III. Kaloyan

Kaloyan Assenov accompanied a small group of visitors consisting of a theatre workshop participants as a guide on an outing to a monastery in the mountains. I was still in the area and tagged along. On the ride, he told us about the mountains and some of the industrial projects that had started after the fall of communism with disastrous effects on the area. I invited for this recorded conversation while we were walking through the grounds of the monastery. His frankness and good humour in facing the challenges of unemployment were remarkable. He had been the principle of one of the schools in Varshets that had been closed due to the drastic depopulation of the area. He said the population of the town, that was once a vacation destination because of its mineral springs, had been reduced by more than two-thirds in less than twenty years. Many young families had migrated to bigger cities or abroad, and Kaloyan now had to consider a similar move.

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