End of the line

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Dear fellow bloggers and travelers. This is the end of journey. Throughout the semester I interviewed many different people with different travelling experience and desires. I learned how to shoot and edit videos and sound and user different apps that can be integrated with wordpress.

The journey began with a college student Mia Chakarova whose dream vacation is Chile. If she has a million dollars she would like to buy hacienda near Santiago and ski all the time in the resorts in the Andes.

Then Evgeni Bizhev, a junior here at AUBG he has been to London and Berlin but he prefers London. He would buy a house in Kensington and explore the city.

Next stop is Dusseldorf where my cousin lives. The most memorable experience he had was the 16 hour walk around the city. His dream vacation is the place he wants to live which is Cologne. He likes the vibe and architecture better.

We now move to Spain where Ivan Stoykov, an AUBG graduate has been. The architecture is what amazed him the most. His dream vacation would be to make a field trip around Europe and visit as many countries as he can. He would start with the Scandinavians.

Next we move to the Far East all the way to the Japan. This is where my sister Martina wants to go. The main reasons are all the Japanese cartoons she watched when she was young and she wants to taste their traditional food – Ramen.

From Japan we jump across the Pacific Ocean to Alaska. This is where an AUBG freshman Boyanna Godumova was on Work and Travel this summer. She liked the climate there and the fact at 11p.m is still light although there is some adjustment period. Her dream vacation would be to visit more culturally rich countries stating with Egypt.

We move back a little bit to the middle of the Pacific Ocean – to Hawaii. This is where my next traveler would want to go. Elena Doncheva is a junior at AUBG and has been to Work and Travel this summer in Massachusetts. Her dream vacation would be to visit Hawaii and all the surrounding islands.

Our journey ends in the holy city of Jerusalem. This is where an AUBG prof. Dimitar Christozov was on his visit to Israel. He actually lived near Tel Aviv for a year but Jerusalem is a city that is a must see and I agree.

At the end of the journey I think that I finally managed to answer the question of my blog. If people had a million dollars they would like to visit exotic places and buy properties on these places so they can go back anytime they want.

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Fear Not This Holy Land – Jerusalem

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So, this is the final interview about the travelling adventurists. Like I said in my midterm post the final interview will be about the travelling experience and desires of an AUBG professor. The character of today’s post is Professor Dimitar Christozov. Dimitar Christozov is a CS Professor at American University in Bulgaria, since 1993. He has more than 30 years of research and education experience in areas as computer science, applied statistics, information systems.

I usually begin my stories with where people have travelled and what specifically they liked about the places they visited and then I ask the question about the dream vacation. This time I will start with Professor Christozov’s dream vacation. Contrary to what most people I have interviewed Professor Christozov’s dream vacation is not some “exotic” place in the common sense of the word. When I asked him he replied:

Let me show you where I spent all my vacations.

And he showed me a picture of his villa in Polkovnik Serafimovo. It is a village located in the area of the city of Smolyan in the southern part of the Rodopi Mountains near the Greek border. He likes to spend two or three months during the summer there with his family and friends.

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That’s all I need, the beautiful view of nature I see every morning from my terrace.

Almost every night they build a fire, make a barbeque, gather round and talk. It is a very relaxing experience, he says. “And, on top if it I have time to concentrate on my research problems, to write papers, and even to read books.”

Professor Christozov however has travelled a lot abroad visiting many countries but the one he liked the most and spent most time in is Israel. Located in the Middle East on the Mediterranean cost it is a country on three seas and most of the year it’s warm and you can go the beaches. Most of the time the Professor spends in Israel is in the small town of Yafo where he actually lived for almost a year. It is located close to downtown Tel Aviv so one can always travel and enjoy the live in the big cosmopolitan city. What he likes most is the medieval architecture and artistic atmosphere in Yafo Ha’Atika – one of the oldest cities in the world stated on the road of pilgrims to the Holy City of Jerusalem.

The location of Yafo is the fastest way to get to Jerusalem. And of course “every person visiting Israel must visit Jerusalem”, he says. There are many places to visit.

Entering through the Jaffa Gate near the Citadel (Tower of David) starts the tour of the Old City of Jerusalem. The Old City and its maze of ancient pathways is confusing and nearly impossible to describe; it is literally a plethora of intertwining alleyways full of shops and ancient treasures ranging from hundreds of years B.C.E., to the Middle Ages. The Old City is divided into separate Christian, Arab, Armenian and Jewish quarters.

It was very interested to hear about his time in Israel because I have been there a long time ago and now I heard a similar type of experience. I also remember the maze of pathways and the medieval ambience of the Old City. I also heard about places the Professor visited that I didn’t have the chance to visit.

For more exciting travelling stories follow me on Twitter and check out the five shot video below.

That peaceful land, that beautiful land…

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Elena Doncheva is a junior in JMC and BUS. She is one of the many students here at AUBG that have been to a Work and travel program in the United States. Wildwood, New Jersey and Nantucket, Massachusetts are her WAT destinations. Of these she liked Nantucket the most because of the many AUBGers that go there and also the money she made and the many other people she met there.

Nantucket is a small island in Cape Cod. Elena liked it because of it and because of the journey to get there. From the airport – a bus and then a ferry.

I got to see different landscapes. From the tall buildings of Boston to the countryside to the sea in one mini trip.

Apart from the USA Work and Travel Elena travelled to other places like Holland, Spain, Greece and Turkey. Of all these places she liked Turkey the most. It is a secular Muslim country that is tolerant to its tourists, she said.

It is perfectly ok for a woman to be dressed only in a swimsuit in Antalya.

Other place that she liked of course is Istanbul. I haven’t been there but at least I get to hear stories about it. A city on two continents, capital of the Ottoman Empire for over 600 years Istanbul (former Constantinople) is a city one can find the wonders of nature, human artifacts, and the testimony of the past and the bustle of everyday life in a close relationship. For those who will remain briefly in the city, there are day tours including the important historical sites, museums, the famous Covered Bazaar and its vicinity.

Coming to the question of the dream vacation, Elena would like to visit Hawaii.

“The last two years I’ve been on Work and Travel I really wanted to go there on vacation but I never had the time.”

Hawaii is home to one of the world’s most active volcanoes and the world’s tallest sea mountain. It is a birthplace of modern surfing, and Hawaii Regional Cuisine. Elena, like many other adventuresome young people who find themselves with a million dollars would buy a luxurious hacienda in Honolulu and travel to all of the six major islands in Hawaii. They are Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Maui, and Hawaii Island. Each island has its own distinct personality and offers its own adventures, activities and sights. Mark Twain called Hawaii, “That peaceful land, that beautiful land… the climate, one long delicious summer day, and the good that die experience no change, for they but fall asleep in one heaven and wake up in another.”

The rainiest summer ever

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Boyanna Atanasova, an AUBG freshman had her first Work and Travel experience in Alaska this summer. To start with, she enjoyed the adventure from the very beginning. Travelling by plane was also part of the excitement.

Even if she was in the summer the weather almost the whole time was rainy.

I heard stories from people that had been there previously. They said it was the rainiest summer ever.” Well, what are the odd?

Another very unusual thing about Alaska is that the weather can change very rapidly. In one summer you can see the change from spring to summer to fall. Talking about the weather now I really want to go there because the temperatures during the summer don’t go above 20 degrees Celsius which for me during a July and August summer is heaven on Earth.

The shift between night and day is also very strange thing for me so I found it interesting.

I went to bed at like 2pm I woke up at 4 in the morning, I looked outside it was bright as a day, as a midday.” Boyanna says at first it is difficult to adjust to that but then you start to get used to it. She says it is very nice to sit on the porch of your accommodation at 11pm and sky is bright. “You don’t need light or anything.

Another weird phenomenon is when it’s raining the whole day and then in evening is suddenly stops and becomes hot and humid.

Coming to the question of the one million dollars and the dream vacation the destinations in Boyanna’s list are quite a few. Egypt for example is a country she’d like to visit first of all to see the Pyramids and The Sphinx and also to experience the culture. Going further to the East, Thailand is another destination she would like to visit because of stories she heard. And I also heard that Bangkok is a city that never sleeps.

Halfway

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Dear fellow bloggers. Although my blog is about travelling I am very proud with the other things as well. As a blogger I am supposed to interview people and I have interviewed a person ever since I created the blog. I also learned how to shoot and edit short videos which was the most interesting part of this blog. Most of the videos have got nothing to do with travelling but I think they are still fun to watch.

So far I’ve interviewed people about their travelling experiences and where would they like to spend their dream vacation. People want to travel everywhere. From Chile, through Western Europe all the way to Japan. They want to experience the culture, the cuisine, the architecture.

Stay tuned to my blog to find out about the dream vacation of an AUBG professor. In the meantime, check my latest video. It’s doesn’t have much to do with travelling but I had a lot of fun making it.