I remember the first time that Net and I came to Bulgaria on a property viewing trip, and as soon as we left the airport in Sofia the first thing that we were faced with was a large gypsy area. Hardly a good advert for the country, but we soon noticed the countryside changing and we were soon hooked. The scenery is forever changing along with the seasons. There is so much of Bulgaria that is unspoilt, and hopefully it will remain that way for a long time. As you travel the country from the mountains in the West to the coastline in the East, or from the Danube plains in the North to more mountains in the South there are large areas still teeming with wildlife. Yes there is a littering problem that is a bit upsetting, but the younger Bulgarians are becoming greener and more ecologically aware, so various clean up programs are carried out throughout the year. The middle aged are often the culprits as they seem to feel that someone else will clean up after them. There are lakes and rivers criss crossing the country, and where there is water there is nature. We have seen Deer, Wild Boar, Pine Martens and all kinds of reptiles, and that is just in the area round the village where we live.
A lot of it seems to stem from what will happen in January 2014 when Bulgaria and Romania get full rights within the EU. If you were to believe everything that has been written in the newspapers then the UK is going to be deluged by more than the existing populations of the two countries. This is clearly a stupid argument but the tabloids have been making a lot of noise about this, and not only the press but also some of the fringe politicians. I can understand how upsetting it must be for Bulgarians, they are a proud people but the message that they are recieving is that they are not welcome. Nothing is mentioned about the numerous professional Bulgarians and Romanians who are already making a valuable contribution to society in the UK. Yet thanks to the UK press, some of the uneducated have decided to conduct their own versions of witch hunts and tell some Bulgarians, who have been in the country for years (earning and paying taxes) that they are not welcome. This is meant to be the 21st Century not 1930s Germany. Even the Charge d'Affaire from the Embassy in Sofia has been giving interviews trying to calm the situation.