I could smell it before I saw it. The air in my neighborhood is infused with lemon. Head down this morning watching for dupki (Sofia’s notorious gaps, wobbles and craters in the footpath) I was moving at a quick pace, with only 1 minute to get to my tram stop. I look up and there they are. Bulgaria’s hope. Juicing lemons to make old school limonada.
I’m hopelessly late, but who could not stop? They each speak a bit of English, enough to make a sale. As they fill my plastic cup with the fresh cool juice and charge me 60 stotinki I ask them what they will do with the money.
“We’ll use it for fun”, the boy replies. I pass them 1 lev and say, “Keep the change,” but the little girl in the floral dress is adamant that I get my 40 stotinki back. Bless her.
As I sip my limonada and walk briskly on, I ponder what awaits these children. In a nation embroiled in incessant civilian protests against pervasive governmental corruption (today marks the 22nd day of protests), the future is somewhat grim. I hope for a brighter Bulgaria for my little lemonade entrepreneurs. Keep protesting Bulgaria!!!