Ivet Lalova: European 100-metre Dash Champion

29.06.2012 § Leave a comment

Ivet Lálova, a 28-year old Bulgarian, became the European champion in the 100 m dash on June 28, 2012 in Helsinki, Finland.

The daughter of a competitive sprinter, she placed fourth overall in 100 m at the 2004 Olympics and won the 200 m gold medal at the European Indoor Championship in Madrid the following year. With a record of 10.77s set in 2004, she is the tenth-fastest woman of all time and the fastest white woman in the world at the moment.

Her career was interrupted by an idiotic accident when a careless athlete collided with her during a warmup on June 14, 2005, breaking her femur. Since then, she has been steadily regaining her speed after seven surgical interventions and a long and difficult recovery. It’s great to see her at the top of her game and I look forward to cheering her on in London.

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Bulgarians Around the World

28.06.2012 § 1 Comment

I stumbled across Fusion Tables – a cool new Google feature that lets users create, merge and visualize tables, and immediately used it for something Bulgaria-related. The map below represents the number of Bulgarians per country, as estimated by the embassy or consulate of each country, for 2011.

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The Origins of Bulgaria: Myths and Facts

26.06.2012 § 12 Comments

What follows is a tale of two, well, tales. More specifically, two tales of the origin of the Bulgarian state.

One tale says that Bulgaria is 1331 years old (having been founded in 681), speaks of an age-old alliance between the prosperous Slavic tribes on the Balkans and a refugee band of Bulgars pushed out of Crimea by overwhelmingly strong adversaries, and is prominent in every history book, in every cocktail party summary of Bulgarian history, in every Bulgaria-themed blog.

The other, well, makes a little bit more sense. Stick with me through 3400 words and I will show you some fascinating examples of manipulation of historical facts, as well as a different logical account of the foundation of the Bulgarian state.

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Bulgaria on National Geographic’s “Best Tours of Europe” List for 2012

25.06.2012 § Leave a comment

A 12-day comprehensive tour of Bulgaria is one of the ten prime European tours for 2012 according to National Geographic‘s “50 Tours of a Lifetime” list.

The tour features a spectacular itinerary and is a good bargain at ~5000$ (minus airfare). Food, wine tastings, 4- and 5-star hotels, and visits to Bulgaria’s foremost sights are included.

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Walking Tours of Sofia 1: The Essentials

21.06.2012 § 9 Comments

The Legacy of Nikola Fichev

20.06.2012 § 3 Comments

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Nikola Fichev (also known as Kolyu Ficheto) is Bulgaria’s best-known Revival-era master-builder and architect. An orphan, he became a builder’s apprentice at age 10, and eventually taught himself the fundamentals of construction, architecture, drafting and arithmetic required to become one of the most prolific masters of the 19th century. He was also fluent in Turkish, Greek, Serbian and Romanian.

In his lifetime (1800-1881), he built four bridges, over a dozen churches, a town hall, monasteries, houses and inns, all between Veliko Tarnovo and the Danube port of Svishtov. He used innovative building methods and embedded revolving pillars into several of his churches. The pillars would be able to freely rotate around their centres as long as the integrity of the building’s foundations was not compromised. Despite being built almost 150 years ago, many still revolve to this day. Here are just a few of his masterpieces that can still be seen in Bulgaria.

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“The Errors of Santa Claus” – Parallel Text

20.06.2012 § 3 Comments

Due to a serious lack of parallel English-Bulgarian text for learners, I have decided to experiment with posting professional Bulgarian translations of English-language material and aligning the source and translated text for the benefit of learners of Bulgarian. What follows is the beginning of a short story by Stephen Leacock.

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