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Dear taxi driver

Dear taxi driver

Dear taxi driver,

First of all, thank you for putting up with me, guiding you through the streets of Sofia in my (non-existent) Bulgarian. Anyone who's ever heard me give directions (even in my native language) knows it is a near miracle we eventually made it to the Vietnamese Embassy on time. Thank you for last-minute turning that corner I forgot to indicate and not give me any "silly tourist" looks while I am trying to pronounce the names of the streets in Bulgarian. (FYI your different alphabet is NOT making that any easier). But there is one thing that I want to ask you, one small favour.

Can we PLEASE just sit in the cab cultivating an awkward silence? I get that you are proud of your country (as you should be), I get that you are just trying to be friendly by asking me about my country and that the difference prices taxi drivers charge for 1km are relevant to you. I understand that you are just trying to make my (and your) ride less boring, but I'm fine with boring! I like just staring out of the window, enjoying the rays of autumn sun on my face whilst secretly being afraid we've just had a massive miscommunication and I'm going to end up in another town (and because of the fact that the internet on my phone isn't working any more and I don't have any phone numbers of people that could come and rescue me, this would be a serious problem ;) ). You just took that exit that said Plovdiv and I'm pretty sure that's not where we're supposed to go. What did I accidentally nod my head to when you were asking  me questions in Bulgarian?...)

Seriously though, you don't speak English, I don't speak Bulgarian and the fact that you can say "Kein Problem" in German isn't going to help us out that much either. You seem to think that repeating the same thing over and over again in Bulgarian is going to make me understand what you are talking about. You're even gesturing and smiling (which is not something I see many Bulgarians do) to emphasis certain parts. It's not working. 

Look, you are generally a nice guy, you've only slammed on the brakes twice this ride and your BO is not that bad that it's preventing me from breathing. I appreciate the effort and I'll try to tell you about cab fares if you truly want me to (although I'd highly recommend fact checking my statements) but don't do it for me. I'm perfectly happy if we're both sitting here in silence, in fact I'm a lot happier as I'm not completely drained after my cab ride if I don't have to communicate in Bulgarian for 20+ minutes. I speak 5 languages, it's crowded enough in my head already. 

Trust me, you getting me to my destination (despite all odds) is more than enough for me. Let's just turn up that radio and humm along and enjoy that blissful awkward silence. 

Sofia - Belgrade (I cheated)

Sofia - Belgrade (I cheated)

Life on the road - Toiletries hacks

Life on the road - Toiletries hacks