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Part 8: From Albena through Slatni Pjassazi to Varna

4th of May 2004•11:21 hours
When the train leaves Varna, I don't just see the well-known Eastern-European housing-blocks, which I meanwhile can see the charm of. But there are also real slums and they are not small at all. No cosy dacha's along the water for the summertime, but permanent inhabited expired small wooden huts surrounds by waste and detritus. In spite of the beautiful marsh nature of this sea bay, the environmental polution is dominating the landscape. Everywhere you can see large factories, levellings, floating foam on the rivers and dirt along banks and verges. Bulgaria is a country of contrasts.

Yesterday, coming from the picturesque Baltchik, I passed Albena, a newly created paradise of well-looking hotels with outside swimming pools amids flower fields, parks and bunches. The outside world of gypsies and robbers was kept out by means of a gate with a pass system at the entrance. Therefor it missed all charm and I had seen enough of it within half an hour. Fortunately a minibus left pretty soon. Slatni Pjassazi (golden sands) with its old hotels and beautiful bunches is created over a longer period in a more organic way, that's why it looks more messy and varied. The result is that here, between the touristic pearls a lot of suffering, ugliness and poverty needs to be passed. For this reason, most of the tourists whom I spotted not even take the effort to explore the city by foot, but step into a taxi as soon as possible to bridge the distance between resort and restaurant. I rather go walking to look around and ignore the many taxi drivers who beg for taking a ride. After I have arrived in Varna I watched the orthodox cathedral with its golden cupola. Many vagrants, but also other folks try to attract the attention, want to change money or offer their goods for sale.

A nice man with beard asks me if I already have a place to sleep. He shows me the complete city center but none of his family members with a spare room is at home, all the single old ladies are doing shopping and usually they don't have a cellular phone. The fourth attempt then nevertheless succeeds, the place is not close to the sea but near the city centre and the bed is not too bad after all, more comforable than the ones before. I leave my backpack behind and do not want to lose time before exploring the city, it is already late in the afternoon, I stay here only one night and the city is large. Most of the museums are already closed, so I only make a visit to the archaeological museum. In the centre there are many little bars and green small squares where people are standing on the street to talk with each other. On many squares there are fontains and sources, most of them with warm water. Between the centre and the seaside is a large elongated park where it is almost more crowded then in the centre. Along the beach one is still very busy with building up beach clubs, the stones buildings with restaurants seem to be from a another era. Nobody is laying on the beach, apparently one still finds it too cold.

A little further away, however, more people can be found on the beach, and I astonish myself that most of them even walk around in swimmingsuits or underpants whereas the Rumanians and Bulgarians can be seen everywhere wearing long trousers when they are on the beach. Then I understand why. An enormous water fall with warm water falls into the sea. From a source and from some pipes comes hot springwater and a special spot is created where one can take off clothes and hang them on a line. People relax in the water and wash themselves under the hot water jets. I cannot resist the seduction and also take off my clothes and take a dive under the water fall in the sea. When I am lying in the warm water a cute guy passes by. He jumps out of his clothes, goes with his underpants into the water and layes himself beside me in the warm water. In laborious German he tries to make a chat, while he is examining me without shame. Soon I become so-called too hot (in several respects), so I take another dive into the cold sea and dry my body with my t-shirt. The guy offers his towel to me and asks if I like to drink a cup of coffee with him. Okay, why not? We walk along the beach and I feel my skin is still tingling from the warm water. At the first beach club I want to go inside, but he puts for to walk further towards the dolphinarium. There we find a newly created lounge bar with trendy couches and a view on dolphins who are swimming under water. We drink something and he confesses that he is gay. I am bi and have a friend, I tell him, while we climb along a steep staircase back to the beach. But I am already lost. Underway to the city we let ourselved fall in the sand and start having sex.
Date: 2004-11-09 18:58:15

Visit : Central Java


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