The night Jodie drank 2 Martinis and lost her chips in a hot game of poker

We've just gone through a few days of Bulgarian holidays. The first of March is bound up with ageless folklore and is called Granny March. Ahead of the day, the locals give each other red and white strings, tassels andother ornaments, which are worn on the wrist until one sights a stork or the first buds on a tree. As there aren't too many storks these days in Sofia, we have to hope the Spring comes quickly, or else these colorful bracelets will cut off circulation to our hands.

March 3 is Liberation Day here, marking 131 years since the country, with the aid of Russia and other allies, threw off the yoke of five centuries of Ottomon oppression. Last night there were some fireworks heard in the distance, but on the whole, except for skipping work for what was in essence a 4-day weekend, we are still not sure how, or if Bulgarians celebrated.

Last night, Jodie and I joined 5 other Israeli coworkers in a poker tournament. The buy-in was 20 Leva (about 50 shekels). It was the first time Jodie had ever played a poker tournament, it was the first time her pair of Aces fell to a trio of Kings, and it was the first time she had not one, but 2 Martinis to drink. I also lost, so at 11:30 pm we went outside to hail a taxi home, which wasn't the easiest of tasks.Today things should be back to normal in the country, and we're still 3 days away from the weekend.


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