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 Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???

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nu2bg
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Fri Dec 18, 2009 10:37 am

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Having read quite a few of the posts on here I see there seem to be mixed feelings about the life in Bulgaria which leads me to think that maybe some have made a mistake ? and they are not as happy as they thought they would be but can't do anything about it as they have all thier investment in Bulgaria, so tell me if this applies to you and why you think your not as happy as you thought you would be
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Mon Dec 21, 2009 8:37 pm

Hi Folks this is a real good thread but some of you are taking it so can we please get back on topic.

ATB

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nu2bg
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Mon Dec 21, 2009 11:12 pm

Well thank you everyone for all the replies, its so interesting to see the views of you all but I get a sense that its 99% positive although some of you have made some mistakes here and there largely you are all very happy with you decission let see what else others have to say and once again thank you all so far
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Tue Dec 22, 2009 2:48 pm

We (me and my husband and spoilt dog) have been living in Bulgaria for almost 10 months now, so it's early days. So what do we think so far of our Bulgarian experience, and more importantly, has it lived up to our expectations?

The experience has been - so far anyway - a very good one. We anticipated a few problems with power and water and have had a few minor blackouts and water cut-offs but nothing major.

The roads - and more especially the drivers on them - are for those with nerves of steel and an extra set of eyes at the back of the head, but we moved here after just under 5 years of living in Turkey where kamikaze drivers are also the norm, so that didn't faze us too much, and had already experienced a water cut of 6 weeks duration one summer over there, so the small cuts we have had in Bulgaria have been easy to deal with.

The language is hard, no two ways about it, and I think if me and St Cyrill met up we'd be having a lively discussion about it (!) as it is so frustrating having already learned Turkish to be starting all over again, and with an older, fuller and exhausted brain! I often think that if all the letters of the Cyrillic alphabet were completely different to the English/European alphabet it would be easier, but there are lots of letters that LOOK identical - and sound totally different..

But in all the really important things we have not been disappointed. It is easy to work here as compared to Turkey where it is almost impossible for a yabanci (foreigner) to get a legal work permit. And, there IS work here if you have a saleable skill.

We find that there's a lot of choice of shops, plenty of variety of stock in them too and plentiful supplies of fresh fruit and vegetables at a fraction of the cost of Turkey, and because Bulgaria is in the EU, there are lots of products from different parts of Europe, but at Bulgarian prices.

Bulgarian wine is superb so if we fancy a tipple there's a bottle of vino for every occasion. Our neighbours are friendly and have been extremely helpful regardless of the fact that communication between us and them is mostly of the pidgin-language-hands-waving variety, they are obviously very patient people!

We have a fast and efficient internet system which allows me to talk for ages on Skype, for free, to my Mum back in Wales, and to all our other family and friends. We have made some friends here of various races including Brits and Bulgarians and there is a smoky little bar here in Elhovo that hosts local live rock bands, so yes, we are happy!!!!

If I could just get to grips with the language enough to understand the news I would be well away, so that's my goal for 2010....

Karen Tony and Tigger
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Tue Dec 22, 2009 3:18 pm

I think this is a very fair evaluation of Bulgaria. We all forget sometimes that many have come from a country with what is classed as a better infrastructure. Bulgaria is like Ireland was so many years ago, pre-EU accession.

It is really interesting to hear from an expat who is coming from Turkey and her perspective on life here.

I agree on the language aspect. That perhaps comes with time? Good luck to you Karen for 2010!!!

Very often expats in Bulgaria feel they are hard done by, too much red tape, can't get Brit foods, can't get this or that, they do things differently. What does anyone really expect. Even those expats in more established countries would say the same thing.

I'm with Karan on this one, enjoy what is different, indeed make a celebration of it. Don't compare is a real key to living elsewhere than your homeland.

Yes, find it all a change - but yes, find happiness too
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scott
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Tue Dec 22, 2009 4:25 pm

I don't live in Bulgaria yet but its ggo to hear of stories like this its hard to imagine that you have swopped Turkey for Bulgaria but this only confirms to me that I am about to make the right decision
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Tue Dec 22, 2009 4:29 pm

Scott I will agree with what you have said here and you to FlorryB it somewhat incredible that you would exchange the Turkey for BG but it just goes to show that BG has something that the others don't ? thank you again to all who have replied
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Wed Dec 23, 2009 8:53 am

Like Abracadabra, I came from another 'idyllic' European country where I lived for 20 years. I retired from my business and then found it would be financially difficult to stay there. There were also other issues to do with life there but this will go off topic.
I made the decision to come and see what Bulgaria had to offer. Firstly it was definitely within my pension even including my partner who is not pensionable. Then I fell in love with my house which took me back to my childhood and it was basically liveable. Within weeks of buying we came to live in a country we had no knowledge of and a difficult language. Yes, another language to challenge my old brain cells. Given the fact that there were no other options open to me I (and my partner) have made the best of it and for the most part still very happy here.
However, I do have concerns for some who move here. It depends so much on where you choose to live. Down south in the Yambol, Elhovo area there are many more Brits (it thats what you want and will help you settle in faster maybe) and there are probably more bars, shops, products etc. In other areas it is still very basic and its wise to live within a short distance of a town. Also, a house with views might be inaccessible in the very cold winters.
Winters are Very Cold and summers Very hot!
Our village is friendly but not overly so and it was up to us to integrate. Coming for a holiday and being welcomed can be very different when you become part of the wallpaper. Then its definitely up to you.
I have said nothing of the bureaucracy which can be confusing to say the least!
All in all I am still happy here at my age but I don't think it would be for me when I was younger. It is a beautifully scenic country but it is also still very poor and it shows in some areas.
I have made the best of it through lack of choice and will be staying but I would definitely advise caution to anyone of a less adventurous spirit or without enough money to return from whence they came if the dream fades.
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Wed Dec 23, 2009 11:04 am

I was unwell in UK suffering from Stress, Anxiety and Depression. One of the symtoms of this was that sweating like a hot flush or for the ladies amongst us tropical moments, however having bought a property and visiting Bulgaria I found that my sweats decreased. We then decided to move to Bulgaria and work here as well, it was a risk as to whether I could go back to work but I have not had a sweat in two years. A couple of weeks ago I went back to the UK for a week and I spent 6 days there before the sweats started again. Bulgaria is not without it's frustrations but we are so lucky to have met some of the nicest people in the world and will continue to fight (financially) to stay here.
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Wed Dec 23, 2009 11:52 am

Thank you oldun for you frank input I found it very interesting, although this isn't my thread its a great one well done nu2bg
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:35 pm

Thank you oldun as scott says its very much to the point and from the heart thank you also Karen.Penny can you tell me did you choose Bulgaria or was it a case of what you could afford at the time? sorry to be so personal its just that you seemed to have moved for health reasons which has made life better for you in a lot of ways I would think, so all in all you are very happy with your chice? thank you all again for the responses keep them coming
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Wed Dec 23, 2009 4:00 pm

Good point you have asked there I do know people who have moved to Bulgaria just because it was cheaper than anywhere else, but they have made a life for themselves and seem to be very happy
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Wed Dec 23, 2009 7:11 pm

i gave up on greece to live in beautiful Bulgaria and have found it to be much more accomodating of foreigners living here.

and same as the posting previous to this one, went all summer every summer without water and often times without electricity

i am happy to say in the three years i have lived in Bulgaria, my water only stopped for three days and that was due to freezing up... urm water to the house that is! lol i am so sure my waters will run, i treated myself to a washing machine, a complete no go in greece!

i also agree it is a much healthier place to live and my own health has improved vastly enabling me to move around a lot, due partly to the local doctors loving of natural remedies rather than heavy duty pills and the freshness of the food and cleanliness of the meat

i originally moved to Bulgaria because of the sheer amount of green my eyes can see!

it is a well looked after country and knows how to manage the water too, something severely lacking where i used to live

and as a huge bonus, had a head start with recognising the Bulgarian alphabet too (very similar to greek)

would i recommend Bulgaria, oh for sure
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Mon Dec 28, 2009 1:12 am

We had planned on moving over to BG for 2 years but had a set back due to ill health - We just love Bulgaria but to be honest I am not sure now that I can live there for longer than 1 to 6 months at a time in the summer. We are out in the middle of nowhere, no bars or restruants, no english speaking people around, no kind of entertainment what so ever - We love the peace and quiet and tranquility of it all and we love the neighbours, but after about a month or so of that, we are both looking forward to coming home. Then when we are home, after about a week 'guess' where we want to be again.

I expect it is real hard to adapt in another country especially if you do not know the language - Living the dream does work out really well for most people and I dare say it will work out for us as and when the time comes. I do think it is a lot to do with mind over matter.

But for now we are happy coming and going as we please - Only time will tell the rest.

Oddy

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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Mon Dec 28, 2009 8:04 am

A very honest answer Oddball and one to take on board for anyone thinking of moving here fulltime. We still love it and have more Bulgarian village friends thatn British otherwise we would not be so happy. No-one speaks english and there are few diversions but at least we are a bus-ride away from a big town. It was up to us to integrate and it has paid off so well even though our Bulgarian is still limited, our understanding is much better. Yesterday we were given a surprise party by all our BUlgarian friends and overwhelmed with gifts. I cannot express how humble we felt that our efforts of 'fitting in' have been so appreciated. It will keep me going for quite a while. For retirement for anyone just wanting a peaceful life it is perfectly possible to have it here in a small Bulgarian village but just make sure you have access to some social life if that is what you want. Most small villages have little in the way of entertainment or restaurants because the locals are still largely self-sufficient and poor.
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PostSubject: Are you really as happy as you thought you would be???   Wed Dec 30, 2009 10:11 pm

Seems this topic has gone astray a little so lets get it back on topic as you may recall the title is Are you really as happy as you thought you would be??? , Having read what most of you have put it seems that the overall opinion is that you are all happy but would change things if you could, well I think wherever we live we would all say that? but its interesting to read that although there are some things your not happy with you are as happy as you can to be which is great

ATB

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