Podcast: Timely release wagons; and Bulgarians and businesses, and other stories

If Bulgaria does not already baffle you, prepare to be bamboozled by the buffoons responsible for what they imagine passes for “English” at the expensively revamped Sofia Central Railway Station.

Yes, the very place that exhorts English-speakers and other foreigners to “timely release wagons”. And that is not some John Wayne get-dem-horses-outta-here moment, it has something to do with how baffled rail passengers should behave.

This and other quirks of latter-day Bulgaria came up in conversation in the latest Bulgaria Now podcast by Lance Nelson, with The Sofia Globe’s publisher and editor-in-chief, Clive Leviev-Sawyer.

Apart from the version of English at the railway station, seemingly in the spirit of Manuel of Fawlty Towers, Lance and Clive dwell on the back-of-a-cigarette-packet legislative drafting that has Bulgarians abroad up in arms about the latest (but watch this space) version of the election law, and the wonderful weirdness of the newest (no, keep on watching this space) amendments to the Foreigners Act.

Those latter versions of draft laws may be a reminder to never employ the “L word” (logic, perish the thought) in considering the strange stuff that passes through Parliament,  but it is certainly grist for the bemused – and amused – observer in the making of this new podcast.

It certainly seems, and this may be one for which there is no need for President Rossen Plevneliev to ask the opinion of the Constitutional Court, that the way that legislators approach their business in Bulgaria, the one law that is immutable is the Law of Unintended Consequences. No wonder those Bulgarians abroad and at home are up in arms, no wonder the good judges of the Constitutional Court might well wonder what will be next in their in-trays, and no wonder – as per Clive’s advice – perhaps the printers that spew out draft legislation in Bulgaria should rather be loaded with disappearing ink than with toner.

It’s all in the latest podcast, along with some notes on minding your Ps and Qs – that is, Plovdiv, and Queen.

(Photo: (c) Clive Leviev-Sawyer)




The Sofia Globe staff

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