Saturday, January 5, 2013

Chestita nova godina i Kukeri

честита нова година!! за много години!!
Chestita nova godina!! Za mnogo godini!!
Happy New Year!! For many years!!

On New Year's Day I was in Razlog, Bulgaria. Razlog is situated in southwestern Bulgaria valley from which you have a panoramic view the Pirin, Rila and Rhodope mountains. Basically, it's gorgeous. On New Year's Day, the Municipality of Razlog hosts its annual Kukeri Festival in the town square. Each quarter (neighborhood) assembles its Kukeri dancers and, in one sense, it is a competition to see which quarter is the best.

But what is Kukeri?  According to the most trusted site on the Internet (read: Wikipedia), Kukeri is

a traditional Bulgarian ritual to scare away evil spirits, with costumed men performing the ritual. The costumes cover most of the body and include decorated wooden masks of animals (sometimes double-faced) and large bells attached to the belt. Around New Year and before Lent, the kukeri walk and dance through the village to scare evil spirits away with the costumes and the sound of the bells, as well as to provide a good harvest, health, and happiness to the village during the year.

Thanks, Wikipedia, for that expert analysis!

In any case I had a lot of fun and took a boatload of pictures and a few video clips. I hope you all enjoy these.

Zhiv i zdrav (Life and life).


  1. hello :) I am from Bulgaria Razlog I was born there :)

  2. Hi Chris,

    I am married to the guy who just made the previous posting I was assigned to Razlog from 97-99 with the Peace Corps. It was the best thing I ever did with my life and the fulfillment of a dream that was, as it turns out, always within reach. Not only did I do my Peace Corps dream, I found a husband in the process and now have two cool kids as a result who often help me in the third goal of Peace Corps, sharing the culture with Americans.

    If you are reading this post and have who have a dream you haven't acted on yet, I am here to tell you, it is within reach. Just take the first step, keep stepping, and don't forget to enjoy the journey!

    Vsitchko hoobavo,