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Collection takes us back to the "pearls" of communism

10 November 2014 / 12:11:58  GRReporter
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Polina Spartyanova

Polina Spartyanova

Today Bulgaria celebrates 25 years since the collapse of the totalitarian Communist regime. The Plenum of the Central Committee of the Bulgarian Communist Party that was held on 10 November 1989 dismissed party General Secretary Todor Zhivkov after 33 years of monocracy. This was the beginning of political changes in Bulgaria and the transition to parliamentary democracy and market economy. On this occasion, we met with Jordan Karaivanov who started collecting socialist objects of historical value after 10 November. He graduated from a secondary technical school in the field of internal combustion engines and he is currently working as a technician-engineer at "Geoplanproekt" company in Sofia.
     What has democracy brought to you over the past 25 years?
     We all rejoiced when democracy came, but did not know what was awaiting us, so we thought that we would be better off. Democracy like Socialism has its positive and negative sides, but the two are not comparable. Public transport, electricity and heating were much cheaper at that time compared to the present day but there were restrictions to travelling abroad and one had to wait 15 years to buy a car. Now there are no such restrictions and everything is available, but the majority of people cannot afford it.
     Do you feel nostalgia for socialism and why?
     I think I do. Now my condition in financial terms is much better but I do not think that my life has significantly improved since then. Peace, which for me is the most important thing, is gone. Currently there is no certainty for your life tomorrow, namely that you will work where you are working today. You constantly meet poor and unemployed people. There were people digging in the garbage at that time as well, but as gymnastics coach of "our golden girls" Neshka Robeva said, "Now they are queuing to dig in the garbage." There had never been such poverty under socialism, there was work for all and even a shortage of workforce.
     What was there in socialism that today's democracy lacks the most?
     Employment of the population is the most important thing because all evils are due to its absence. If everyone works and is busy in some way, this ignorance will not be around us. People are constantly stealing. Do you think there is a village house that has not been robbed? Is there a flat in the city that has not been robbed? There was no such a thing during socialism... I will give you just one example: what Todor Zhivkov built, they are even unable to paint it at present.
     You have an impressive collection of objects from the time of the People's Republic of Bulgaria. When did you start to collect them and what prompted you to take up this hobby?
     I started to collect them after 10 November. Basically I am a collector and I love to collect old things, but then I saw some people, smarter than me, starting to collect communist symbols and it became fashionable at some point. I have been collecting and buying things for my collection for 25 years and this is my biggest weakness - the relics of socialism. During socialism, for example, we collected stuff from the time of King Boris III ...

Tags: 25 years since the fall of communism in BulgariaTodor ZhivkovSocialismJordan Karaivanov
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