Back to more updates from our April trip to Bulgaria – have to try and get these all posted before the end of May or else that would be really sad!
This time a quick visit to the market town of Polski Trambesh which is about 45 minutes from Svishtov.
There’s nothing really special or romantic or even very interesting about Polski Trambesh but obviously market day was when everyone came out to meet everyone else. The market is split into two parts. One half is on the town side of the railway tracks and has lots of general stalls, clothes, hardware, etc. – a lot of tat really to our eyes but there were a few bargains to be had in the houseware stalls. We saw a great (huge) gas burner and giant enamelled cooking pots that would be excellent for boiling up pig swill – we will definitely get one of them. But in an economy like BG it is not diffuclt to understand why the cut prices in the market are attractive. It was also interesting that you could find some really small elements of things that might break (electrical or mechanical) in the market so a handy place to come. And we loved seeing the “Del boys” of the old markets int eh UK, obviously doing their hard-sell patter, very entertaining even though we didn’t understand a word of it!
The second half of the market (down through the unlit subway to the other side of the railway tracks) is for fruit and veg, gardening tools, bulbs, seeds, plants, fruit trees and everything like that – from obviously market gardeners to some people who are clearly selling just what they have produced. Fabulous fish and poutry straight from the house/farm, honey and loads and loads of gorgeous fresh fruit and veg. Like lots of countries the stall-holders go from one market to another throughout the week but it was good to see such a wide range of produce. People told us that as the seasons change the produce and products in the market change, so it is a good place to get a bargain at any time of the year.
We got some good advice from a few expats, which was don’t try and grow stuff that – in the season – costs only pennies to buy. The best example is tomatoes… Of course you want a few plants to grow tomatoes you can go out a pick a few for a meal or a salad or whatever. But in the season you want loads of tomatoes to make and bottle and store tomato sauces that will last you through the winter. But the plants take a lot of water (expensive) and a lot of space (better for other produce) to grow – but you can buy loads and loads very very cheaply in markets like Polski Trambesh.
As with most places there were a few dodgy characters around and because we stuck out like sore thumbs (as expats) they hit on us quite a lot. But a few very serious “ney” seemed to do the trick and they left us alone. But all in all a nice tidy little town and I imagine in the height of summer the market would really be throbbing.