A month and a half have passed since the pandemic and social isolation. Not only in Plovdiv, but around the world nothing is the same. We have learned to hide behind masks, guard against anything and everyone, and stay home more. We do it in the hope that it is temporary and at some point, we will return to normal - what we have previously taken for granted and not even appreciated.
That is why we, the team of the only digital guide under the hills, asked ourselves what is the thing we miss most from our beloved Plovdiv from the life before the coronavirus. We have collected our 5 things for you, and feel free to add more in the comments.
The crowded Main Street
Plovdiv is known for having the longest pedestrian street in Europe and it was absolutely mandatory for residents and guests of the city to make at least a few strolls. The selfie next to the Together sign, a picture with the statue of the famous Plovdiv jokester Milyo, a panoramic view of the remains of the Roman Stadium - these are just a small part of the pictures that regularly appeared on social media before. And now, in the city center, it's kind of quiet, everyone walks quickly, striving for their final destination, unwilling to stop and admire the incredible architecture and the surrounding beauty.
The bars full of life
They were the first to close their doors when the state of emergency was announced. They removed their tables, chairs and umbrellas, and are now with dark windows - somehow empty and lonely. There are no people, the energy that has breathed life into the oldest living city in Europe is missing. Just a year ago, the spring under the hills was filled with thousands of tourists and locals sitting over a glass of wine, beer or just a cooling lemonade. Waiters barely passed between the tables, and sometimes people even waited outside for free places. We miss the noise, but most of all we miss the laughter and the good mood that hovered around.
Drinks on the hill
There is one more thing - typicallyPlovdivian, which is also totally banned at the moment. Walking in certain areas is allowed, but under strict conditions, and it is now absolutely unthinkable to enjoy the splendor of the Plovdiv sunset from one of the hills. We now send it away on our terraces every day, hoping it won't always be like this.
Hugging our loved ones
There is no way that you haven’t at least once in the previous days met a friend and awkwardly wondered whether to shake hands, hug, or just say hello from a distance. The whole hysteria around the pandemic has totally changed our perceptions of loved ones. We try to protect them as much as possible and it seems that we have left physical proximity for moments when it will be safe.
The freedom to roam aimlessly
One of the biggest charms in Plovdiv - getting lost in the streets of Kapana or the Old Town, where there is something interesting and memorable at every corner, has also become a luxury. Fortunately, we don’t announce our location or destination with a text and a declaration, but again, the sense of easiness is not the same.
Photos: Georgi Matov