Sunday, August 01, 2010

Going South!

Its been a busy July, and I'm finally due a vacation. In my part of the world, that means going south - and south of here is the deep Balkans. I'm off to the Koprivshtitsa festival in Bulgaria tomorrow. Every five years the historic village of Koprivshtitsa in central Bulgaria hosts a festival of folk music performed exclusively by non-professional village musicians. It's like the Burning Man of Bulgarian folk music. A weekend of Bulgarian geezers blowing their bagpipes, sawing away on gadulkas, singing in their tight village harmonies, amidst some of the most inedible crap festival food on this blessed earth. Ten years ago a kebab from Koprivshtitsa sent me to the emergency ward of Sofia hospital. I have since learned a thing or two about eating during Bulgarian heat waves. And I will be there. And posting. I have been to the last two festivals in Koprivshtitsa, and there is no way I would miss this, killer kebabche or no. After that I will spend a few weeks in Istanbul, the Best City in the Grilled Meat World. This blog actually began years ago as a document of my addiction to Turkish grilled meat in Istanbul, and grew from there.
Last week I played a gig with Muzsikas at the Artist's Valley Festival in Kapolcs, near Veszprém. Luckily, the festival food is a bit better in those parts. The The Técsői Banda from the Ukraine was busy playing at the Katlan Toni village-style catering area, growing fat on free gulyas and rooster ball stew.After leaving Kapolcs we headed back to Veszprém, my Mom's home town, to catch the train back to Budapest. I still have a lot of relatives living here, and it is certainly one of the prettiest towns in Hungary, if only because it isn't flat.
As soon as I get into Bulgaria I'll be posting more: truly disturbing food, flacid pastries, amazing peasant ladies, and those frightening bagpipes - the gaida - that I love almost as much as Transylvanian Gypsy music.

3 comments:

Ganch said...

I can't wait to hear all about this festival! Green with envy but grateful that you'll be writing about it...

易建佑青 said...
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Wayne Bell said...

I, along with my partner, have been to Vesprem and thoroughly enjoyed it. We stayed in hotel called: Topo. They had great food to offer.