Crouch left their Hill Street home in September 2006 to start
their new adventure in the beautiful Rila Mountains, where they
have since opened a guesthouse. Despite the ups and downs of the
last year, not to mention a few language barriers, the pair have
said they wouldn't change a thing that has happened in the the
last 12 months.
Speaking from Bulgaria, Rosie commented, "We
are absolutely loving it. It's like everything you see on those
no-going-back holiday shows, you can't speak the language and
there are all these barriers, but you just have to overcome
"It's more than we imagined it to be and the
people are so willing to help, we do speak a little bit of
Bulgarian but it is a hard language to learn."
The couple were holidaying in the region when
they fell in love with the area and decided to begin their new
life in the Rila Mountains, near Rila National Park. However,
they soon found out that life wasn't quite as it was on holiday.
"Our first winter was a shock," explained
Rosie. "One metre of snow fell in five hours but they are very
geared up for it. A snow plough was brought right up to to door
to clear the snow away so you can do your daily business.
"There are certain things we weren't prepared
for, like your car has to have anti-freeze that works below -28
degrees and radiators at home have to have anti-freeze or they
will crack. It was scary for the first couple of days and then
the plough arrived and you realise it's just snow, people live
here and get on with their lives."
The couple may have left Lisburn behind but
they certainly haven't had the chance to be homesick with plenty
of visits from their family. They are also being kept busy
taking their guests on tours of the local area as word spreads
about the guesthouse.
"It has been an experience I wouldn't miss for the world,"
said Rosie. "I wouldn't change any of it, it is all a learning
curve. "It has been a fabulous time and if all goes to plan we
will be here for a long time to some," she concluded.