polish1Anna Balawender is 27 years old. She comes from Poland. Anna has arrived in Sofia in April and for almost 6 months she works in a call-center as customer’s support with Polish and English.

- What did you know about Bulgaria before you came here?

- Before I came I’ve tried to do some research. I found it very interesting that when you introduce yourself to somebody you just shake your hands and for me this is very nice and polite. Before I came here I was living in Spain and the people there just give kisses all the time. To be honest I didn’t know that much. There is this thing that when I was at school and we’ve had the history classes, unfortunately, they weren’t that much focused on the Balkans. It was more about the west of Europe and it’s a shame because it is a beautiful country and I wished that I knew more.

- How you find Sofia as a city to live in?

- I really like the fact that the nature is highly appreciated here. Everything is so green and so natural. It seems like Bulgarian people, you love it too. I have the feeling that you are more outdoor people. I like Sofia very much although I found it interesting that some parts are more developed in comparison to others but it is a big city. There are a lot of things that are about to be changed. I have this one thing that I don’t like so much. Unfortunately, some sidewalks are a bit damaged and this is not good for my shoes. (She laughs.) I really like living here and the people are very nice, extremely helpful and also very patient.

- Name your favorite places in Sofia?

- My favorite parts of the city are the parks. I really like Borisova gradina. I like also Zaimov Park and Doktorska gradina – they are so cool. I like downtown and all this little coffee shops over there. I think my favorite street is actually Oborishte because it is so beautiful with all the trees around. It’s so quiet and I just love to hang out there or having a beer at some restaurant.

- Why have you decided to come to live here at first place?

- I was living in Mallorca and I was trying to find a job over there. So I was searching for a job online and I found this job here in Bulgaria. I love my job right now. This was one of the major facts. Before I came I was wondering how it is in Bulgaria. I really liked the pictures of Sofia and actually I have really liked the pictures of Plovdiv. I have never been to Plovdiv but I’ve googled it and it seemed beautiful. I really want to explore more from Bulgaria.
- Is it difficult for you to understand, to learn or even to speak Bulgarian?
- To be honest I didn’t put too much effort to learn Bulgarian which is a shame. But you know the thing is that I think I don’t really have to. When people speak to me in Bulgarian somehow I can imagine what they mean. May be it is because my language also comes from the Slavic group. So I kind of understand it. I can’t speak Bulgarian. I can order a beer and this is enough for now. (She laughs.) I can read Cyrillic alphabet but I would love to learn more because it’s a very nice language.

- What is your Bulgarian favorite word?

- My favorite expression is “Zapovyadaite!” (“Here you are!”). I don’t know why but it sounds so funny.

- What do you think about the magazines City® Info Guides?

- Oh, I love the magazines! There is a map and all events are listed. I could not wait for the next one to come out. For a foreigner as me they are so useful. We don’t know the city. What we read under the internet doesn’t really reflect on what it is in here, for sure. So this magazine can tell you this is worth to visit, this is nice and interesting etc. This is more like a guide about what you can really do in Sofia and I use it very often.