Monday, June 14, 2010

Гургулят (Gurgulyat)

On Saturday, I joined some friends on a hike to the nearby village of Гургулят (Gurgulyat). With a population of fewer than 40 (excluding livestock), Gurgulyat isn’t exactly a tourist hotspot. Like many Bulgarian villages, the place appears to be dying. As outsiders, it’s easy for us to romanticize such places and mourn for their loss thinking they have seen better days. Maybe they have, but, having spoken to people who grew up in villages like Gurgulyat, I know life in such places was never easy. And, if you look closely, you realize that these places aren’t dying. Crumbling buildings and a relative absence of people may not jive with our romantic notion of such places, but I doubt the villages’ glory days do either. And, as much as I enjoyed the day we spent in Gurgulyat, I’m not sure I would want it any other way than it is now.

A dirt track leading to the village.

Shots around town.

Prior to the time we returned to town to have lunch and catch the bus home, we saw two people. This guy and his wife.

We also ran into their horse ... in the middle of the street.

We had the rest of this to ourselves.

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