When I was traveling I never expected that I would want to stay for so long in one place as I did in Bansko. So many people have been arriving here for just a single day or week and they end up staying for a whole month, season or buy an apartment in the first week they arrive. Have you ever heard of a place that does this with people? I would like to know… because I have never seen this before!
Have you ever experienced the love of strangers that treat you like family… just because. They don’t expect anything in return. It is something I experience in the Coworking Bansko community. I wasn’t looking or asking for it… I just received! There is something special about ‘receiving’ help, kindness, hospitality from people you just met. There are no strangers in Coworking Bansko, only friends you haven’t yet met.
I don’t meet this behavior in every place I go. That’s why I’m interested in finding out what about Bulgaria it is that keeps dragging me back here. In the past 4 years, I came 7(!) times to Bulgaria. Even leaving now, I’m planning on coming back in a few months to Bansko. Really, why?? I usually tell people: “It’s the beautiful untouched nature, cheap living, and friendly people.”. Others who have been in Bulgaria doubt that last. If you haven’t been here yet, you must know that Bulgarians usually don’t smile much, they can even appear quite grumpy. But behind that facade I meet so much hospitality, wisdom, strength, that is unknown in the country where I come from.
There are about 20 Bulgarians all over the country I call ‘friends’, but in Bansko, I spend most of my time with the expat community. People who came to the small-town life in Bansko from New-Zealand, Canada, France, the US, Argentina, Russia, … from all over the world.
Last Friday I went to a ‘womens circle’, a workshop only for women with yoga to heal, nourish, transform and build our vital energy. Oh yeah, don’t be mistaken, even in Bansko I found my tribe! How amazing is it that these women circles are organized here, and that I can go to aerial-yoga, have a yoni-egg test group, take barefoot hikes in the mountains, do juice-fasts together, watch environmental documentaries on a big screen and talk about personal development with so many around me. The heck, I even did my first test-workshop about Tantra here! And if you are thinking now, that this is one of those hippie-communities, where the majority is laying the whole day in a hammock, smoking weed and dance free-spirited around a campfire at night… No judgment in here, I also LOVE this environment from time to time! But you should come to Bansko and see for yourself that it’s completely different. 90% of the people I hang out with here are entrepreneurs, freelancers, innovators as programmers, translators, marketers or in sales. Only the other 10% is more in the creative-emotional field as artists, life-coaches, and yoga teachers. Still, many of those more rational people are very open to spirituality and personal growth.
After that women's circle a few days ago, I asked the teacher, who was Irish, how she ended up living in Bulgaria. She said something about stars that aligned and energy fields, the cards that showed her the path that just leads her here. Hmmm, interesting... And I started asking myself, is there a deeper meaning that I’m so drawn to Bulgaria?
A few minutes of googling brought me to lists of ‘most spiritual places in the world’ where Bulgaria is ranked higher than famous places like Machu Picchu or Tibet. In the mountains of Rila, you can find seven lakes, a place people from far away travel to. It’s said to have one of the strongest energy fields in the world and sensitive people who have experience with lucid dreaming appear to have the most incredible nights there. I believe I need to come back to experience this for myself in the summer sun.
I still don't know what exactly it is that is attracting me and so many other awesome people to this place. It might be something energetically or Coworking Bansko just did a very amazing job with creating a diverse interesting community here.
See you soon Bansko. My Bulgarian addiction ain’t over yet.