EurActiv - Letters to the Editor

Settling in Bulgaria

Sir,

Regarding ‘Centre-right sweeps to victory in Bulgarian elections‘:

My family and four other families are trying to have holidays in Bulgaria, and have bought property there.

We come out twice per year and spend our money there, and in response to this our properties are constantly damaged, meaning every time we arrive we have to spend money we have spent before making repairs to damage done by our neighbours.

Mainly this means replacing the pool pump, clearing the pool of things that have been thrown in, replacing flowers which have been taken, etc. All this because we want to have holidays there.

I and other people there are trying to bring others to Bulgaria, but I don’t think it is worth the trouble as the pool will be broken again, or the filter and pump stolen again. We come out for two weeks at a time, and we can’t spend the whole two weeks making the pool operable and tidying up the gardens, and still have a holiday.

Regards,

Thurston Ian Watkinson

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Comments

  1. Dear Mr. Watkinson,
    Being German myself and married to a Bulgarian I know very well of these problems that arose shortly before and since the accession of Bulgaria to the EU and am sorry to say that these problems are mostly brought on by yourself.
    You have to understand that you are coming to Bulgaria, playing the rich big-shots, buying property …. even with a pool, which nobody in Bulgaria can really afford to have ….. and then, you don’t even live there but only visit 2 times a year.
    Are you really trying to make us believe that something like this would not happen whereever you live !? Well, if I would buy a house in a poor area of London, Liverpool … or any other place …. build a pool and stay there only 2 times a year this same situation would happen there. Because that is the nature of man …. to be jealous of nice things belonging to another and if I can’t have it I will destroy yours.
    It makes me really angry seeing this article of yours… the poor rich man! Have you ever acquired any information about the living circumstances of the people in Bulgaria!? Do you know that what you or one of us spends on food per week is about a full salary per month for a Bulgarian citizen….. and that is in the city, not even in the country site. You should really not be surprised about these incidents.
    But what this also shows us ….. and that is very common, is that there is no integration into the area or understanding of its social life. Foreigners mostly keep to themselves and look at the local people as inferior. So how can you expect these people to respect your property or even you?
    You would have much less problems if you would get befriended with the neighbors, show them that you are also interested in them and the village you own the property. Why not offer your neighbor to use your pool while you are not there and give him a little cash present in exchange for watching after your property and making sure everything is ok and stays like this. Would this little gesture kill you, or do you think it is worth making it and avoiding all this trouble and repair costs!?
    Please understand that I have no intention to attack you personally, but this is happening very often and all over the country and it is getting very upsetting that the locals are not being respected but mostly seen as a problem. We should not forget that we ask foreigners moving to our countries to respect us, our culture, traditions and beliefs. So we should extend the same courtesy to the Bulgarian people. And a little respect, friendliness and generosity will go a long way.

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