July morning!

By Dimitar Panayatov (8-D)

(Editor’s note: I had not heard of this holiday until Dimitar submitted this piece to the paper. I’d love more details about how it’s celebrated in Burgas; I’m so sad I was not there to enjoy it! P.S.)

July Morning is a tradition in Bulgaria, connected with the hippie movement, to meet the sunrise on the first day of July. The welcoming of the sunrise is conceived as a symbolic welcome of a new beginning and expectations of a better future from the participants. 

The name of the holiday is associated with the famous 1971 song "July Morning" by the English rock band Uriah Heep, according to Wikipedia.
Every June 30 until July 1, many people gather on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast to meet the sunrise together.
The rocks at Kamen Bryag

It started as a hippie holiday in Varna in 1980, and later the celebration moved to the village of Varvara, Tsarevo. It is currently celebrated regularly with the participation of John Lawton, lead singer of Uriah Heep, at rocks near the village of Kamen Bryag, where the sun first shines on Bulgaria's easternmost coast. Some people say that the words of the Uriah Heep song were also used as a protest against communist rule, but it continued as part of the festivities after the fall of the regime.
 Especially popular venues are the banks of rivers and all kinds of water pools, hilly areas with the widest possible visibility of the terrain, as well as any hill around the country's big cities.

JULY MORNING lyrics/Uriah Heep

There I was on a July morning
Looking for love
With the strength
Of a new day dawning
And the beautiful sun

At the sound
Of the first bird singing
I was leaving for home
With the storm
And the night behind me
And a road of my own

With the day came the resolution
I’ll be looking for you
La la la laI was looking for love
In the strangest places
Wasn’t a stone
That I left unturned
Must have tried more
Than a thousand faces
But not one was aware
Of the fire that burned

In my heart, in my mind, in my soul
La la la la

There I was on a July morning
I was looking for love
With the strength
Of a new day dawning
And the beautiful sun

And at the sound
Of the first bird singing
I was leaving for home
With the storm
And the night behind me
Yeah, and a road of my own

Football is here! (Along with some jokes …)

By Alexandra Sarieva (8-D)

The return of the English Premier League is something many of us had been waiting for. Though in Bulgaria I never noticed the postponing of the matches, Football is now here again!

To all the fans, congrats! Especially to Liverpool for winning the Premier League! They have gained enough points, as Man City lost to Chelsea and now is unable to reach Liverpool, even if they win every following match and if Liverpool loses every one.  As a football fan myself, I will not be mentioning which football team I support as I don’t want people to hate me; no, it’s not Manchester United!

I watch football on the TV, as I pay 8 leva monthly for Diema Sport 40. 

Let’s get to some football news… yeah, not my thing but hey! I’m a journalist, I can mention news…. Except for the biggest news about Liverpool, there’s more…. On a site that isn’t very popular, I’ve found the greatest news… 

  • A player from the Reds had been caught trying to steal from Jurgen Klopp…. He was basically caught “red-handed”.  Get it?
  • Another thing, Manchester United was blamed again for laundering money. They have brushed aside the accusations as they have brushed aside Brighton 3-0. That’s the 40th accusation for this year.
  • Another thing, Manchester City was accused of having laundered money. I can’t believe it! As their coach Pep Guardiola wears the same pants every match, it’s hard to believe he laundered money as he hardly laundered his pants.
  • Manchester City has decided to sack their lunches because of the Coronavirus for them to be kept safe. They have said that they have already sacked a lot of lunch and think that they may have a sacking record, but I think Man United holds it — but with managers.
  • Another rumour. It has been said that Ernesto Valverde has said in an interview that he was able to buy 14 players for 200 million Euros each and make a team with substitutes. He then started to think of faking players’ prices. Didn’t faking it start with Messi’s size after the growth hormone injections?

Of course, I missed football like a ball in the hands of Loris Karius (Liverpool goalie). I love that unexplainable passion that it creates in me.  Sometimes I love that competitive spirit it has and especially when the person next to me supports the other team. It is interesting mainly cause of the funny side. You may mock the players  and have fun teasing the person next to you, especially if they’re a Man U fan.

That’s enough I suppose. Have a nice day!

All jokes are mine.

Betrayal

By Alexandra Sarieva (8 D)

I hush you in your silence

And yet I come again.

I lock lips before the violence,

colder still now and then …

Oh my sweet nothingness,

the prettiest of all

You’re the poison of the youth

The wisdom that will fall.

You should already know.

How it’s all now turning,

I may have already been burned

But my heart is still burning.

Betrayal you say,

But I heard something else

The chanting of Burn her!

I want her to melt!

A man

By Jasen Zhekov (9th)

What is a man, but a squabble?

A smearing flick of dust

Made to wimp and wobble

Can be destroyed by a wind’s gust

Attempting a living unjust

In a landscape of bone and dust.

What is a man, but a walker?

Ill and deformed, of the war a skulker

He keeps on moving, legs shaking

While the lands bellow his very feet are quaking

With the cries and pains of those long gone

He was the only one.

What is a man, but an anomaly?

With functions different bodily

Dying from the inside constantly

What an oddity

Not by its design,

Of many others to combine

And in his DNA to put a line.

What is a man, but a heretic?

He reaches it at long last.

Skulls and bones lie down in tons

Flesh and gore galore 

Blood rivers out pour

From the ground human tongues

In a lake of human lungs

Splattered into little crumbs

Bottomless, no drains 

Fueled by the bloody rains.

Bloody massacre and murder reigns

As far as the eye can see

As far as one can be.

It was humanity

Or what was left from its vanity.

Only he was left

The last surviving repulsive test

Of these creatures vile.

He stood there in denial

They cannot all be gone

There must be at least one

To live on this barren land.

What is a man, but a survivor?

“Look far and wide, my child

Run around like a boar wild

All of them are gone

You were too late, it had already begun

What had to has been done

You are the only one

Yet to be undone”

What is a man, but an ant?

He, that little speck of dust,

Living for the goal unjust

For this doomed race, vulgar and robust

To not be wiped out in a wind’s gust

But instead, to live on

Even in one man’s soul

That was already gone.

What is a man, but a corpse?

“Why did you come here, child”

Spoke as such the silhouette

The Architect

The Disconnect

The Intellect

The Manifest

The Suspect

Of all this

Mindless, bloody pirouette

“To this land of pain

That to your goal

Has no gain?

Have you come here

To end your race

And find your resting place?

To end your suffering

In this mortal realm?

No, 

You are but a pitiful creation.”

What is a man, but a fake?

“You are not pure bred

Like the humans lying in this gore

Showering this land in lead

War after war

Death after death

Dirty, horrible, corrupt

Years of pain and suffering uncut

They met an end 

Abrupt.”

“What is a man?

A man is but a sinner

A wretched killer

A slimy grave digger

A deadly wasp stinger

A gun trigger

What do you consider

Differs from a man

And a death giver?”

“What are you, but a mutation of man?

Not like him one

No, you never were

Impostor”

A single tear 

Went down his face.

So, this is the end

Of his race.

No, of the humans

His makers

Like the silhouette

Made them.

“Begone.”

What was a man?

Nothing.

The land falls quiet.

No sound

No stories to tell

No future, past

Or present

No life

No death

It was all over

It had been ever since it began

Only the silhouette was left

To create Its next failure

In the endless cycle

Called “Life”.

A most unusual hobby!

By Julia Ivanova (11th)

If you are like me and you like to research or watch or even investigate (if possible) missing person or murder cases, then this article is for you!

Many people ask me, “Julia, what is your hobby? What do you do in your free time? How do you relax?” and to that I say “I like to listen to murder cases on YouTube!”. The face they make when they hear this answer is priceless. After that the question, “How do you relax to that?” comes up and usually I don’t have a specific answer for it.

Two years ago I decided that I wanted to study something medicine -related. I thought a lot about it and I set my goal – I was determined to study hard and to become a surgeon. Unfortunately, not long after that I realized that probably won’t happen and like any basic teenager from this decade, I decided to go on Netflix and watch something.

That was the moment that changed my thinking completely. I came across the series “IZombie” (I personally think it’s very interesting!), in which the lead character works in a morgue and eats the brains of the deceased, then sees visions of their memories and helps a detective solve unsolved murder cases.

I got really into it and I started researching true-life crime cases on YouTube, because I just wanted to know more! Well, one thing led to another, and suddenly I found myself watching an hour-long video about a killer sociopath and while listening to that in the background, I was playing games, doing my make-up, cleaning my room and even eating!

                It’s hard to explain why I like these videos, but what I know is that I can’t stop watching them! Two of my favourite cases are about a woman named Julia (like me!! haha), who created a poison and sold it to women who wanted to kill their husbands; and the other one is about a guy who came on a trip to Bulgaria, more specifically Sunny Beach, and after a night out with the boys he disappeared!

                I’m wondering if I should become a detective or a pathologist or something like that. For now I’m just watching these videos, learning how the killers’ minds work and getting some tips on how to get rid of a body and how to get away with a murder!

If you like these kinds of videos, I can recommend these YouTube channels: Bailey Sarian – she covers really interesting murder cases while doing her make-up, Bella Fiori – she covers missing persons cases, and Eleanor Neale – she does pretty long videos, but that is because she does her research right!

Attitudes towards smoking

By Julia Ivanova (11th)

For this article Julia interviewed two 11th-graders..

11e, boy, non-smoker (an athlete)

1.       Do you smoke?

-No.

2.       What do you think about second-hand smoking, is it really that bad for the health?

-I think it’s very unhealthy for the non-smokers, because smoking is so bad that it even threatens the lives of people who are around smokers. That’s due to the fact that almost every substance contained in cigarettes is deadly or harmful in a way.

3.       Do you have any problems caused by smoking or smokers around you?

-I haven’t had any problems caused by smokers around me so far (if we exclude that it’s kind of hard to breathe around them and the bad smell), but that might be because both of my parents smoke and I have gotten used to it.

4.       Should public smoking be allowed?

-“Should” is a strong word. But I think that if by now there hasn’t been a law made about public smoking then the rest of the community doesn’t have such a big problem with it.

5.       What do you think about electronic cigarettes?

-I think that a cigarette is a cigarette. Whether it is electronic or normal it’s still unhealthy. The less a person smokes, the better.

6.       Does the smoke from cigarettes bother you?

-As I already said, it doesn’t bother me much because I’ve been around smokers since I was little. Shortly, no.

11e, girl, an artist, smoker

1.                  Do you smoke?

– Yes.

2.            What do you smoke?

               – Almost every possible kind of cigarette, a couple other types of electronic cigarettes and iqos.

3.            Since when have you been smoking?

               -I have been smoking for 5 or 6 years now.

4.            What made you start smoking?

               – I started smoking not because my friends were smoking (I was one of the first to smoke), but because it calmed me whenever I did.

5.            How many cigarettes per day do you smoke?

               – Relatively few – 3 or 4 times a day.

6.            What do you think about second-hand smoking, is it really that bad for the health?

               – I think that it does have a negative effect on non-smokers, but there are people who don’t smoke and are not bothered to be around smokers

7.            Do you have any problems caused by smoking or smokers around you?

               -Sometimes I do have problems when I’m around people who smoke too much too frequently. Generally, it affects the lungs and it’s very unhealthy.

8.            Should public smoking be allowed?

               – I think that it should be allowed, but not everywhere; I think everything has to be tailored with the place and the situation and we shouldn’t practice public smoking too much.

9.            What do you think about electronic cigarettes?

               -Also very unhealthy and bad, they are even worse for the health than cigarettes although the statements are the opposite. 

10.         Have you tried to stop smoking? Why?

               -Yes, I have tried to stop many times, because I have had lung problems, every time I got sick, for example.

11.         Does the smoke from cigarettes bother you?

               – Not really, but like I said we should always consider where we are and who are we with.

12.         Do you think being a smoker affects what others think about you?

               – I don’t think so, even though these days there are a lot of people who disrespect smokers. Generally, the people who I surround myself with, don’t care if others (or me) smoke or not.

13. Do your parents smoke?

               -They do smoke, but with measure.

14. Do your parents know you smoke?

               – Yes, they do, they don’t approve of it, but they have adult conversations with me on the topic.

This is the second article in our series about smoking and students’ attitudes. In the first article, Ivo Radev (8th) interviewed an 8th-grade former smoker.

*Lycoris radiata (a poem)

A poem by Denislav Dranchev (9th)

Orange sunset 

on that day we met 

lest I forget 

since then I’m yet

to see those eyes 

though I’d hate for them 

to see my cries 

and how I’ve grown numb. 

How I shake

please hold my hands still 

like always, take 

them and squeeze tight until 

I awaken 

from this dream,

but now forsaken

how I scream

...

and curse this world 

without you, 

and lay curled 

with no one to turn to. 

...

Long road,

on both sides flowed 

those flowers – signs which bode 

bad, so I was told, 

red spider lilies, where 

we parted ways,

you know, I went there 

and waited days,

...

for your return

the warmth of your embrace,

now replaced by a searing burn 

in my chest and face. 

...

Black clouds 

above the dirt where you lay

black crowds 

mourning your last day. 

...

And from that soil sprout 

those flowers red 

without

you I feel dead. 

...

So pretty 

they are, I’ve grown to hate with time,

I pity,

those flowers with a fate like mine. 

...

So can I too like them bloom

even atop a tomb 

of the one whom 

I loved to doom?

*This poem revolves around the red spider lily (lycoris radiata in Latin, therefore the name of the poem), otherwise known as the flower of death. It’s known to bloom in and around graveyards and some myths say that if you see spider lilies on the road when parting with someone, that would be the last time you meet them. 

Education in South Korea

By Berrin Yesil (11th)

Nowadays, so many students in my school and also my friends are  so interested in learning about the culture of South Korea, and especially in getting an  education there impacted by big  successful Kpop groups, Korean dramas, and as well as it having a really fast network.  So, if you are curious about the educational system of South Korea, you are welcome to gain some new knowledge here!

 Just as the cultures of South Korea and Bulgaria are radically different, their ways of work and education are quite different, too. The fact is that South Korean people are workaholics and if you study there you’ll have some difficulties with spending time — like you’ll become  more tired there than in Bulgaria — there are a lot of benefits to studying there. These benefits are that South Korea is a unique study destination for international students, has outstanding educational rankings, first-rate facilities and technical programs; and it is an affordable option for international study, offers a unique university experience, a place to develop language skills and to get ready for international work.

 According to Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_in_South_Korea, first of all, Korean education is about kindergarten; primary school from 1 to 6 grade; middle school from 7 to 9 grade; high school from 10 to 12 grade and then university ( tertiary education).

    Many students in Korea start kindergarten at the age of three, and continue to study there for three or four years before starting their formal education. Children are expected to learn basic maths, reading and writing. Also, in this education it is included to learn how read and write in Korean and often in English as well as Chinese. Teachers teach them to recognize body parts, food and nutrition, and adult jobs in those languages by using games. 

  Moreover, Korean kindergartens offer their classes in English in order to give to students a “head- start” in later mandatory English. 

    In primary school, students have different programs in their subjects, and  usually the class teachers cover most of the subjects. However, there are some specialized teachers, such as for physical education or foreign languages. 

 In first and second grade they learn Korean, mathematics, and physical education.

 In third till sixth grades the subjects  taught are : Korean, English, Moral Education, Social Studies, Mathematics, Science, Art, Music, Practical Arts and Physical education.

 Unfortunately, there is a  disadvantage in this education and this is that teachers  still  use corporal punishment discreetly for bad behaviour or bad discipline, even though since 2011 this kind of punishment is officially prohibited as mentioned in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_in_South_Korea.  

 Also, according to Wikipedia,  during middle school, students have  to take their studies much more seriously. They have to take seven classes a day to study Korean, Algebra, Geometry, English, social studies and science, with each lesson lasting  for 45 minutes, while in Bulgaria lessons last for 40 minutes. Regulation uniforms and haircuts are enforced, according to AsiaSociety.org (https://asiasociety.org/education/south-korean-education?fbclid=IwAR2hAJ7x4yA6-JQPD8ffLqfT4bX0IQbi82HyYAg_x0PMsdI3TPOuAj0BoIE). Moreover, students’ lives are more controlled, teachers  move around from classroom to classroom and a few teachers apart from these who teach special subjects have their own rooms to which students come. 

    In the period of high school students must study for increasingly long hours each year moving towards graduation to be more competitive in order to enter extremely attractive universities in Korea. They have two semesters from March to August and  from September to February.

 In Korea, it is said, that if you sleep three hours each night, you’ll enter into a top university, if you sleep for four hours each night you’ll enter into another university, but if you sleep five or more hours each night, forget entering any university. Therefore by that logic, in high school  students leave home at 5 a.m. and finish their school at 4 p.m. After that they go to a studying room in the school or to a library instead of going home; this is called “yaja” or evening self- study. By the fact that schools provide paid dinner for them, students don’t need to go back home for food. After finishing that evening self-study, they return home and to specialty study school till 3 a.m. from Monday to Friday, but often at the weekends, too. By the way each lesson lasts for 50 minutes. This is written also in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_in_South_Korea.

   According to AsiaSociety.org (https://asiasociety.org/education/south-korean-education?fbclid=IwAR2hAJ7x4yA6-JQPD8ffLqfT4bX0IQbi82HyYAg_x0PMsdI3TPOuAj0BoIE),  entrance to the universities is based largely on the scores that students achieve on the CSAT, which accounts for 60% of the admission criteria while the remaining 40% is dependent on grades from comprehensive high school records. In addition to the CSAT scores, universities also take volunteer experience, extracurricular activities, letters of recommendation, school awards, and portfolios into consideration when assessing a prospective applicant. It’s the same program in Bulgaria but here instead of CSAT scores, the results from the matriculation exams are considered. 

  Three  universities recognized  as the  top are Seoul National University, Korea University, and Yonsei University. The other well-known universities are  Pohang University of Science and Technology, Sogang University, Sungkyunkwan University and Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology while in Bulgarian they are : UNSS, SU “Paisii Hilendarski”, Technical University Sofia, VTU “Saint Kiril  and  Metodii”.

 Bachelor’s degrees are from four-year colleges and universities, like  national universities of education, The Korean National Open University, technical colleges and cyber universities but it can take six years for  medicine, law and dentistry. Also, bachelor degrees require up to 130 to 140 credit hours to be completed.

 In order to enter in Master’s degree, the applicant must have   a Bachelor’s degree with a GPA of 3.0 (B) or greater from a recognized institution, two recommendation letters from the professors and an undergraduate record showing their GPA and qualifying examinations in addition to an interview. The programs will involve 24 credit hours of coursework. So, if students achieve a GPA of 3.0 (B)  or higher, pass a comprehensive examination as well as the other foreign language examination, they will be able to take a Master’s degree.

 According to https://gezimanya.com/guney-kore/guney-korede-tatiller-bayramlar-onemli-gunler?fbclid=IwAR3vVpxwBT60rI0LWlZc5DJ86uIDib1J0YMuQSubaxjcZFixvFhCE-EbHqE (translated from Turkish)  about vacations, Koreans have holidays on 1, 2 January because of the New Year, on 1 March because of the Independence  Day, on 22 May because of the Bhudda’s birthday, on 6th June for Remembrance Day, on 17 July because of Constitution Day, on 15 August because of Freedom Day, on 3 October because of the National Liberation Day, Thanksgiving depends on the Chinese calendar and on the 25th December because of Christmas. We also have our national days and holidays on 1 January, the New Year, on 3rd March because of the liberation from the Ottoman Empire, on 19th April because of Easter called Velikden, on 1 May because of the Day of the Workers, on 6th May George Day and Day of Bulgarian Army, on 24th May because of the Day of  Cyrillic alphabet, on 6th September because of the Union Bulgaria, on 22nd September because of Independence Day, on 1 November because of Teachers Day and on the 25th December – Christmas as it is said in http://xn--b1aekbb1acci5f.com/pochivnidni2020.html (translated from Bulgarian)

Star (a poem)

A poem by Berrin Yesil (11th)

(April is traditionally “poetry month” but we are extending the custom into May!)

I wish all the stars were shining

in front of us with all the brightness.

Don’t go, we didn’t finish singing,

you aren’t ready to go back to the sadness.

Can you by my side just stay

without any tear from your eye to cry?

The first thing that will meet you is day,

I promise you, just don’t hesitate to try!

Will you hold my hand

if I make your heart healing,

if I make precious our time spent,

will you agree with the hardships dealing?

Will you hold me tightly

until we are together?

Don’t go away silently,

you’ll be that star forever!

Halt! (a poem)

A poem for our times

By Denislav Drachev (9th)

> A hammer has fallen upon us, hard iron,
> a judgement for our ways until now,
> playing around the open mouth of a lion
> we’ve been bitten without knowing how
>
> strong it’s jaw was, unknowingly playful,
> we were sinful we were severely careless,
> should’ve been grateful
> for the way everything was.
>
> Quarantined and isolated,
> we’re a danger to each other,
> every man is infected,
> it leaves me to wonder
>
> how it all got so bad,
> I guess it’s an event to reflect upon
> and one to maybe make us realise what we had,
> though quite comical what it took was for it to be gone.
>
> It’s mindboggling how much eye to eye means,
> now that we have none.
> Besides it, many other simple things
> that we could’ve done
>
> while we had the chance, we let it go to waste,
> but it’s meaningless to reflect like that
> and look back jealous of those old days
> and make up scenarios like what
>
> we would’ve done, had we known.
> It’s bad to scramble around,
> speaking to ourselves in that tone,
> because that way we’re bound
>
> to dig ourselves further than we already are,
> so instead let’s tolerate it with a furrowed brow
> and then watch and see how far
> it will get us- the drive we have now.
>
>
> And let this be a lesson
> for the future us
> who’ll stand under the sun
> remembering how everything was…