Bulgarians also celebrate Valentine's Day, but February 14th is equally well known in
for another celebration – Трифон Зарезан (St. Trifon's Day). On Трифон Зарезан,
grape growers theoretically go out and prune the vines in their vineyards, pour
some wine over the vines for good luck, and then proceed to celebrate by drinking lots and
lots of wine. The folks who I know who celebrate Трифон Зарезан generally skip
all but the last step. Since I didn't have a valentine and wasn't up for a
night of heavy drinking, I didn't celebrate anything on February 14th. Bulgaria
The process was fairly simple. From 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m., we picked grapes. We picked big purple grapes, pink grapes, white grapes, green grapes, tiny purple grapes ... at least seven varieties in all.
The grapes went from the vines to buckets ...
and from buckets to crates ...
then the barrels were prepared ...
and the grapes were mashed ...
and then transferred to the barrels.
By 7:15 p.m., all the grapes had been mashed and dumped into the barrels, all the buckets and crates had been cleaned, and we were sitting down enjoying a sampling of the previous year's efforts. It would be a couple months before this year's hard work would pay off.
There were lots of bees and wasps enjoying the nectar from the grapes. I got stung a couple times, but it wasn't a big deal.
There were also a few harmless butterflies enjoying the nectar.
This is Rexy, the family pitbull.
Far more menacing was this mouse murdering hen.
A few other shots from around the village.