If I ever read the Foreign Office Website on travel advice I do not think I would ever leave the luxury of my cotton wool duvet.

Similarly if I ever listened to half of the horror stories of Sofia the capital of Bulgaria I think Id resort to back to back DVD box set of X -Factor wrapped up in my cotton wool duvet.

From Prague onwards, the stories of Sofia keep coming. Stolen Passports, pickpockets, stolen bicycles, street robbery, corruption and Bulgarian Mafia. Every traveller on the road has a negative story of Sofia.  You are not part of the gang if you don’t. The more I hear the more I cannot wait to visit.

There is no smoke without fire of course, but it is a nice little city with friendly people, cobbled streets and good food.

I of course have my own little story that I will use when a moment is required to keep up the exaggeration of the horrors of Sofia. My eyes widened when an old guy desperate to sell me a gigantic pair of binoculars suddenly pulled out the biggest ‘Rambo’ knife with the shiny serrated edge, I have ever seen and waved it at my face. A minuscule second of horror swept through me followed by the realisation that he  only wanted me to buy it.

214 words on Sofia up until this point of this entry will not help reducing the negative perceptions of  this city and Bulgarians. The fact that I have not actually said anything positive will not help either.

Fortunately for me the groups of Bulgarian gangs running prostitution, human trafficking and thieving in the UK are not representative of my experiences  Bulgaria or its people.

Before I press ‘Publish’ I am just going to check that my bike is still chained to the fence outside.


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