Glossary
Balkantourist: Under communism, the state-owned enterprise that had a monopoly
on tourism. After 1998, Balkantourist became a private tourism company.
Banitza: A breakfast pastry made of philo dough, eggs, and feta cheese
Boza: A sweet, thick drink made of fermented malt and usually had for breakfast
Chalga: Music that is a fusion between Roma music and traditional Bulgarian folk
comecon: The economic organization that existed from 1949 to 1991, linking the
ussr with Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, East Germany,
Mongolia, Cuba, and Vietnam, with Yugoslavia as an associated member. Albania
also belonged between 1949 and 1961. The comecon was formally disbanded in
June 1991.
Cyrene: Bulgarian white cheese similar to the Greek feta cheese
ds: State Security, the Bulgarian equivalent of the kgb
Gevrek (gevretsi): A Bulgarian bread that is a cross between a pretzel and a bagel and
sold on the streets for breakfast
Lev (leva): The Bulgarian currency, for example: one lev, two leva, three leva, etc.
Meze: Any appetizer eaten with rakiya
Mutra: A Bulgarian mobster
Mutressa: The girlfriend of a mutra
Mutri: The plural of mutra, mobsters
Nomenklatura: Members of the former communist elite
Pochivni stantzii: Holiday houses owned by enterprises for their employees
Rakiya: Bulgarian brandy, usually distilled from grapes
Stotinki: The Bulgarian cent. There are one hundred stotinki in one lev.
Vitosha: The mountain that overlooks Sofia, and the main shopping street in Sofia
Vitoshka: A diminutive of Vitosha, which refers only to the street
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