Thursday, December 22, 2022

"Musala" - short story

Mt. Musala is the highest mountain not only in Bulgaria but in the entire Balkan Peninsula. At an elevation of 2,925 meters above sea level, its peak is 10 meters higher than Mt. Olympus in Greece. The saying goes that whenever a Greek citizen climbs to the top of Olympus, they bring with them a stone. Enough stones and one day, Olympus would rise higher than Musala. Bulgarians would not be pleased if this happened.

“Hurry up! We’ll make it up there in no time.”

“Let me catch my breath!” I am not a mountain climber and in fact, the only time I get any exercise is by joining an occasional pickup game on the basketball courts. Yet here I am, attempting the ascent to Musala’s peak at the insistence of Angel, my companion on the summer hike. Angel, with a hard ‘g’ like angle, only spelled differently. Angel, my host on a whirlwind one-week visit to Bulgaria.

“You must climb Musala if you want to really know Bulgaria,” he told me when we set off on the two-hour drive south from Sofia to the mountain.

“I thought we were going to the Rila Lakes,” I replied, remembering reading about the seven glacial lakes.

“Too many people there on the weekends. I knew you would prefer something more challenging. Mount Musala.”

Read the rest of the story on Ariel Chart.

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