Made sure we were up in time for breakfast today. I had more toast, cold cuts and cheese, frankfurta and a new spicy sausage that they didn’t have the other day. Followed by more of the tinned strawberries of course. Very slowly got ready – watched an episode of Fullmetal and did a couple of pages of writing in between, since Kel had to shower. Emi messaged us saying to meet her and her mom in Billa, the supermarket over the road. It wasn’t raining, but it looked grey outside so we smartly decided to park our little brolleys in our bags.
We not so smartly forgot to bring Emi’s brolley with us. Kel remembered when we got down to the lobby, so we had to go back up in the lift again to fetch it. We got outside and made it about a third of the way down the road before deciding it was actually far too cold for shorts this time, so we quickly went back yet again to change. I stuck with the same shirt but swapped my little cardigan for a longer one and traded shorts for jeans. I’m glad I decided to pick a variety for this trip. It took three attempts, but we managed to get down to Billa and find our personal Bulgarian guides.
We got the subway into town where Emi had to run a quick errand, then whilst Tamara went off to shop w went to catch the tram into another part of the city centre. I still can’t get over how cheap public transport is here – an unlimited daysaver that includes the subway, buses and trams is only four lev! This place is crazy! I mean, it’s great for us to come over here when it’s so cheap in comparison, but it must have sucked for Emi to come from here to very expensive England for her studies and work. But then I suppose it’s also sad that we’re used to the more expensive place. I feel I’ve been very cheated in life.
We got to the mall that Emi had in mind and the first thing we did was hunt down the food court. We grabbed a Subway – chicken teriyaki with honey mustard and sweet onion sauce for me, yum – then hit the shops. Well, Kel and Emi shopped. I mostly wandered around with them and daydreamed, which is what I usually do when people are shopping. I’m generally not interested in shops unless they sell books or toys. We found the Bulgarian equivalent of Superdrug and the others got quite excited in there over all the makeup and nail varnishes. I joined in somewhat and got a couple of cheap silver eyeliner sticks, primarily for cosplay purposes, then a perfume I’d never heard of before called Eclat D’Arpege by Lanvin, which was really nice. I can never resist getting perfumes in places like this.
To make my shopping experience even better, the next two shops we hit were book shops. Somebody heard my prayers! I went a little crazy for the notebooks, which are one of my biggest weaknesses for impulse buys, and ended up buying seven. Oops! They were all just so awesome though! I found two different pineapple ones – which were obviously a given – one with a manga style Gothic girl’s face on the front, a pretty Japanese style one that actually looks very similar to the one I’m currently writing in, a steampunk looking adventure one, a nice green one with a fancy binder, and another steampunk-like Paris one that is actually laid out more like a day-to-day diary but eh, I can use the date space at the top for my word count instead. Or maybe find an excuse to write a diary perspective story.
We did a couple more nonsense shops after that (i.e. shoes and bags and things. I promise I am actually a girl) then we had a peek around a giant toy store, yay. I bought a little cow with tufty hair for my collection. He’s still yet to be named. By this point we were all officially shopped out, so we headed back to the tram, after quickly taking pictures of a shop we spied called Totally Erected Man. I’m not even kidding. We got the tram back into the part of town that we visited on Saturday and immediately went back to the ice cream shop, which I learnt was called Ice Cream Kingdom in English. I ordered the exact same thing and we sat down outside a mosque to eat. I watched the pretty fountain in front of us and Kel watched the pigeons. She’ll make a great old person.
We got the subway back and went our separate ways so that we could freshen up and get changed. I decided to shower whilst we were back, rather than having to do it much later on. Did some more writing whilst we were in the room and downed a big Red Bull, then got ready again to go back out and meet Emi for nine o’clock. She took us to a typical Bulgarian restaurant where we’d point to a picture that we liked the look of in the menu and she’d translate what it was. We would have been stuffed if we were doing this on our own. I got what was effectively some cheesy chips for the table to share, and a Bulgarian dish called sach, which is pork, onions, peppers and cheese all cooked on a big sizzling platter. It was huge! Not to mention the ratio of meat to everything else was totally wrong for someone who doesn’t like veg. I still ate quite a lot of the onions and peppers though, until I ran out of the meat to go with it. Hey, I’m a big girl now.
On the walk back we had a very lengthy conversation about great TV shows that got cancelled and how much the world would lose its shit if they ever made even one more episode of Firefly – like seriously, I would just explode – then we stumbled back onto one of those weird exercise gym/playground things that we’d noticed on the way there. Of course we had to have a go on them, despite being full of food. I should have claimed one of those ‘wait two hours after eating before you swim’ kinda rules. Tried the pull-up machine and blatantly didn’t even have a hope of doing one. All I could manage was to just hang there and lift my legs a bit. Now I just hate all the guys and gals who can do the salmon ladder in Arrow even more.
The geek discussion continued after we left Emi at her apartment block, as me and Kel talked about how we have the City of Heroes convention on Friday. This will very possibly be one of the best weeks of my life. Had another cherry Carling when we got back, watched more Fullmetal, then conceded to our usual midnight-ish bedtime.