An End but Not THE End!

Dear reader,

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With one of the members of my pack of dogs… Snowball

This is the end… I mean of the semester, because I don’t plan to stop looking for dreamers. I know that I have started this blog as a project for my Multimedia Journalism Class. However, I’m from those who easily get attached to everyone and everything (not by chance all the pets I have taken from the street are still at home, although I always promise my mum that they will stay just for a day). That’s why I don’t think that I will be able to say goodbye to this virtual shelter of mine and I hope that next semester I will have enough time to find more people whose stories to share with you.

But for now, let me concentrate on this final post and let me apologize in advance for its extraordinary length…

PART ONE: What about me???

Honestly speaking, I had a tough time choosing what to tell you this time and after a few sleepless nights of constant planning, I realized that every time I was interviewing my victims, I was wondering what I would answer to the questions I was asking them. That’s why no matter how narcissistic it may sound, I decided to interview myself and to share with you my personal story… I think that after torturing so many people, this is fair enough…703698_10200242573254780_1950499318_o

1. Do you consider yourself a dreamer?

The truth is that I have never thought about this before I started this blog. And now, I could say that I am definitely a huge, huge dreamer.  I guess I spend 80% of my time dreaming and 20% studying, from which about 90% I spend in dreaming about passing my exams. So, it turns out I am dreaming almost all the time and thank heavens my dreams usually come true, because otherwise I won’t be able to graduate soon!!!

2. What was your childhood dream?

That’s easy, because this one has never changed and will never change. But let me tell you a story…

In my country, there is a superstition that the first object children catch with their hands when they start walking predetermines their future profession. I made my first steps on my first birthday. Later on that day, either to facilitate me or to fly in the face of fortune, on the threshold of our living room my mother arranged a textbook in mathematics (thank goodness I didn’t choose it), a photographic camera, a typewriter, a fiddlestick, a stethoscope, and a recorder.

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First steps outside…

My grandmother took me out of my cot and left me at the one end of the corridor. The spectacle was to begin. The curtains were raised and the domestic public took its stand near the living room’s door. Without waiting for their loud applauses, I started walking and crawling towards the end of the “stage”, where the members of my audience were shouting encouragingly as if it they were watching a cockfight.  

When I reached the threshold, my public was already impatient to see whether the barrier of objects there would arouse my curiosity. I sat on the floor and stretched my little fingers towards the textbook, but when I was about to touch it, as if something pushed me and with great efforts I took the vintage recorder, standing to the left. It was a heavy metal box in silver and black, covered with numerous buttons. I started pressing them, smiling and giggling as if I was aware of what I was doing. 

“She will become a journalist,” my grandfather said with conviction like a real prophet.

This was the end of the spectacle. The curtains were dropped and the baby taken back into the crib, where she fell asleep almost immediately.

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The future journalist… Not by chance I hate pink so much!!!

I am telling you this story as if I remember it vividly.  The truth is I do not, but when I heard it for the first time from my mother, I felt as if I have always known it. I am not sure whether this is a mere coincidence or a destiny, but I have always dreamed of becoming a journalist. When asked what they want to be when they grow up, little girls usually say a princess, a teacher, or a doctor. But this wasn’t the case with me. I cannot think of a time when I wanted to be something else. And yet, do not imagine that before being born I was summoned to court, where fate was the judge and where it was decided that my life-long sentence would be to be a journalist. No, nothing like that ever happened to anyone, because destiny’s main purpose is to direct our life not to determine its course.

Personally, I do not believe in superstitions and fortunetelling. Therefore, it is impossible for me to acknowledge that my future can be ordained. But I believe in destiny. I believe in the destiny that you and I create for ourselves. Not by chance Franklin D. Roosevelt once said that “men are not prisoners of fate but of their own minds,” and I would add of their own dreams. After all, fate doesn’t create us, we create it. The choices we made yesterday determine who we are today and those that we make now determine who we will be tomorrow. So be careful what you wish for, because sooner or later you have to bear the consequences of these choices.

I was lucky that the main consequence of my dream is actually this blog!!!

3. What are you dreaming of now?

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Next time I hope to be in the cockpit…

In fact, lots of things, but I will tell you about the most difficult one to achieve… I want to fly an airplane one day or at least a helicopter. I simply love being in the sky. This feeling – it is something I cannot describe. It is more than freedom, more than fear, more than peace. It is a feeling for which a word has not yet been created!

4. Tell me about a dream on which you gave up!

When I started high school, I really wanted to continue my education in the USA. So, all these years I was preparing for this and it was not easy at all because I had to take SATs in different subjects. The problem came from the fact that I was actually studying everything in Bulgarian. Moreover, the curriculums were different in many areas, so yes this was a challenge, which I successfully overcame in the end. However, after seeing the first letter starting with “Congratulations! You are admitted…” I didn’t smile. At that moment I realized that I was not ready to go so far away from home and just to throw away my life here and to start all over in an unknown country. My mum is definitely the happiest from my decision, although traveling from Blagoevgrad to my hometown takes the same time as traveling from Sofia to New York, but even this miserable fact makes me smile…

5. What is your recipe for making dreams come true?

179149_4830199240635_769171914_nActually, pretty simple. I call it DFB.

D is for “dream,” because in order to make dreams a reality, first of all, you need to have some.

F stands for “fight,” because if you patiently wait for something to happen without making some effort, just forget about it. If you want something, take it!

B is for “believe,” because sometimes just to believe is enough!

6. Do you think that there is a place for the dreamers nowadays or they will be chewed up and spit out by the conventional society?

Of course there is a place for the dreamers nowadays. Actually, today there is no place for the conventional society. So, I truly believe and hope that it will be the dreamers who will chew up and spit out the so called conventional thinkers…

 Well, this was definitely the easiest interview for this blog… At least I was not feeling guilty at all for wasting someone else’s time…

PART 2: What did I learn during this journey?

I am from those crazy people who still make plans of the lessons they read, use colorful pens, and highlight important things… That’s why I decided to make something like a summary plan of what I have learned during these past three months as an MMJ student!!!

I. The lessons I have learned for myself:

  1. It is never too early to start writing your next story!!!
  2. Technology doesn’t like me and rarely cooperates with me!!!
  3. Write down your passwords even if you always use the same one!!!
  4. Always check that you are holding the camera the right way!!!
  5. Never allow the charm of your interviewee to make you forget to press the button for shooting! Otherwise, you will end up with a 4-shot video in the best case scenario. And this is a serious problem if you are shy enough to ask him to meet again!!!

II.The lessons I have learned from my victims

1. Lesson №1: Dream Realistically

Professor John Rodrigue was the first person I interviewed for my blog and the main message he tried to convey through his story was: “Dream big, but dream big in something that you can actually do!

2. Lesson №2: Never Give Up!

The next person I asked to share her dreams with me and with you was one of my best friends – Kali Kurtova. She was part of the AUBG community and also one of my roommates last year. However, she went to study in the Medical University in Sofia in order to fulfill her dream of becoming a doctor. So, she is the perfect example for someone who never gives up on their goals. “I’ve come to learn that you don’t reach your dream because you’re destined to, but because you’re determined to,” was one thing she told me that I will never be able to forget!

3. Lesson №3: It Is the Journey That Matters, Not the Destination!

The third person who willingly agreed to answer my questions was Hristo Georgiev. He told me so many things that I have no idea how to sum them up in just a few sentences. However, if I had to make a cheat sheet, I would choose the following quote, because it’ll always remind me for the main lesson I learned from him: “basically it is not the fact of becoming that makes you happy, but actually the process of doing it, because when you go back and see how much you have done, you feel that immense satisfaction of yourself.”

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4. Lesson №4: Stop Dreaming and Start Doing

Ivaylo Stefkov was my next victim. He was a total mystery for me and in a way he still is, because you cannot get to know a guy just from a seven minute talk about his dreams. However, what I realized about Ivo is that he is not from those who dream quietly in the corner. He is from those who dream and then always act. Not by chance, his main message was: “stop dreaming!”

5. Lesson №5: There is Always a Place for Dreaming

Anna Bashuk was the last AUBGer I interviewed before the Fall Break. What can I say about her?! She just knows how to make you laugh. Anna is the typical freedom-loving person – a traveler, a photographer, a writer, a person who believes that “there is always place for dreaming, because otherwise it is boring to live!”

6. Lesson №6: Do What Brings You Joy!

The next person who shared her dreams with me was the smiley girl Tsveti Zaharieva, whose main advice to all of us was to always do what brings us joy, “because if it doesn’t bring you joy then nobody will feel it for you if you don’t feel it yourself, she further explained.

7. Lesson №7: Just Follow Your Dreams!

I really enjoyed this interview for two reasons. First of all, it was my seventh one and seven is my favorite number. Secondly, just because of the person I talked to. I remember that the one and only thought that came to my mind after we finished was: “I regret not getting to know him earlier.” However, later is better than never after all. Bojan Mladenovski is the one I am talking about – the one who successfully convinced me that “dreams are your own matter and if you want to follow them, you should definitely follow them.”

8. Lesson №8: “Be Positive”

The last victim of this blog was Desi Nikolova, the life with whom exceeded all my dreams and expectations (she is my roommate for those of you with dirty thoughts). What I won’t forget about this story is her recipe for making dreams come true. Not only because of the exciting manner in which she shouted it in my ear, but because of the recipe itself: “Being positive,” she told me, “this is the ultimate recipe for everything.”

PART THREE: Time to conclude, but not to say goodbye!

The truth is that these past three months changed me for the better. Not to mention that I even overcame my “fear” of being in front of a video camera… I am thankful for being was part of Blogwarts – the best MMJ class ever. I am thankful for being literally forced to create AUBG Dreaming! I am thankful even for opening an account in Twitter! I sincerely enjoyed every second of this short but priceless journey, and I am sure this is not the end!

Happy Holidays to everyone and keep dreaming!BeFunky_null_1.jpg

Xoxo

Sabi 🙂

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Lesson №7: Be Positive!

Dear reader,

As my next victim jokes, we have two weeks to save this semester. Luckily for you, this is the last time in which I am going to bother you with the wishes of other people, so that you can fully devote to your most urgent goal right now, namely to pass the finals.

The person with whom I decided to meet you today is the one who I should have interviewed at the very beginning of this blog if I had to arrange my interviewees in order of importance to me. However, as I have already mentioned in my previous story – the best things, always come last.

Without too much beating around the bush – this week I am going to tell you about the dreams of my lovely roomie – Desi Nikolova.

Photo: Personal Archive
Photo: Personal Archive

We found each other on the first day of the Orientation Week three semesters ago. I will never forget the first time I saw her and I am sure that she has no clue about this random meeting.  I was going to our room together with my mother.  When we walked out of the elevator on the fourth floor of Skapto 2, we saw another mother-daughter couple that was to go down. The one and only thing I asked myself at that moment, as we were passing each other, was: Is this girl going to be my roommate? A few hours later, the door of room 2426 opened and thank heavens that same girl walked in.

Freshmen <3
Freshmen ❤

I have to admit that we are not very much alike. But this is what makes our life together so exciting. Our first year at AUBG was a series of unforgettable memories that won us the hatred of our initial neighbors. As a result, now we are living one floor below – a change that we do not regret at all, because the boys who live next door definitely share our noisy lifestyle (although it is also possible that we are just getting older and well-behaved).

We needed some time (not too much) to get used to each other. In fact, mainly she had to get accustomed to my awful habit of getting up early. But who cannot start liking me, and most importantly, who cannot start liking Desi – her jokes, her sense of humor, her crazy ideas, her exceptional cooking skills, her laughter while sleeping (which is a bit creepy, but you get used to it with the time), her honesty and straightforwardness. I love our girly talks and I love even more the moments when we decide to go to Intro to Sleeping instead to Calculus. And honestly speaking, I cannot imagine waking up at the end of our favorite class and seeing another person on the opposite bed.

She is a great singer... I guarantee! Photo: Personal Archive
She is a great singer… I guarantee! Photo: Personal Archive

Desi has always been passionate about music. After all “those who sing, do not think evil” as one Bulgarian proverb says.  As a kid her one and only wish was to be engaged in music in every possible way and “basically this happened.” She participated in many concerts and even in an opera. She was performing all the time and she even recorded a song. However, fame and success didn’t turn her head. Actually, she would have never shared these achievements with me if it was not for the sake of this blog. But the most interesting part is that her childhood dream is not much different from what she wants right now.

Desi describes herself as “a huge dreamer.” In fact, what she believes is that “if you don’t dream, then you are half-existing.” However, she thinks that dreams are not enough to help you live to “your fullest capacity.” For her a real person is the one who not only dreams, but who also does something to make his or her goals become a reality. “Otherwise people are just lingering in the wind,” she says.

When I asked Desi about a dream that she never even tried to make come true, I was so relieved that she didn’t find time for it. Actually, it is something extreme and dangerous, at least from my perspective, although I am not a very reliable dangerometer. What she wanted was to try kitesurfing. “One summer I was really up for it, but I was just watching it from the side and saying to myself how cool it is and at the same time I didn’t do anything,” she shared with me. I guess this is the reason I have a roommate now…

As I have already mentioned, she is from the few people who made their childhood dreams come alive. “Being involved in concerts, having a song recorded, and performing in the biggest concert hall in Bulgaria” are just a few from the goals she turned into a real life story. But as an ambitious AUBG student, she thinks that this is not enough: “Recently, I have been consumed with work and studying. But I hope to realize my dream even further.” From the future, she wants to have the opportunity to be engaged in music professionally. However, she is not from those who made big plans: “First I will finish what I have started here at AUBG and see what happens.”

10304967_10152796833223672_6008072403139294694_nAnother dream that she made come true is her coming to AUBG, “which turned out even more spectacular” than what she imagined. (Not sure whether she meant the University or the parties, but…) While in high school, Desi hoped to “go to a place where to get along with people well” and to “feel comfortable around them.”  “I am really thankful that I went to the SAT, it was worth it, finally now that I am here,” she jokes.  “And of course, I have to graduate successfully. This would be even better,” she adds and we both burst into laughter.

When I asked her about her recipe for making dreams come true, she didn’t even wait for me to finish my question and shouted: “Being positive!” Desi believes that “this is the ultimate recipe for everything.” (Obviously, only when she cooks, this doesn’t help a lot!) Her advice to you, my dear reader, is to “preserve this spark that guides you and makes you safe and comfortable with what you are doing” and of course to try “making small steps each day towards what you want to accomplish.”

Being a dreamer herself, Desi thinks that those people “have this way of connecting with each other.” “They sense it,” she says, “It is an inner connection which happens among people and they find a way to connect with each other no matter what.” After all, the common misconception that opposites attract each other is always true only for electrons. Humans… well, we are just always an exception…

Xoxo

Keep dreaming!

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Dreaming about My First Storify and Thinglinking about Dreaming!

Dear reader,

This is the first Storify project I have ever made. https://storify.com/AUBGdreaming/dreaming

You can check it and laugh at how bad I am with it. 😀

sssCool things don’t stop here. Now I and my MMJ fellow-students are “thinglinking.” Here is my first thingling project: https://www.thinglink.com/scene/588736842816290817

jksddjksfj

Have an amazing day!

And keep dreaming, because otherwise I will continue posting my boring storifies!!!

xoxo

Lesson №6: Do What Brings You Joy!

Dear reader,

Today I have decided to tell you about the dreams of one really special young lady I have the honor and the privilege to know. I will give you a hint …Her smile overshines the sun….

And if this had been the sole requirement for admission at AUBG, she would have been the one and only student here.  And you, my dear reader – you, most probably, have already guessed who I am talking about. Yes, you are totally right – this time, I will meet you with Tsvetiana ‘Tsveti’ Zaharieva, whose charming smile, I am sure, you have already noticed walking around the campus of AUBG.

In action... Photo: Anastasiia Hryshchenko
In action… Photo: Anastasiia Hryshchenko

When I meet Tsveti, I know that the rest of my day cannot be darkened by anything.  That’s why I love meeting her in the morning. This just foreshadows that something good will, eventually, happen to me. She just brings this positive energy with her all the time, wherever she goes. She is like the sun. She shines for everybody.  To be honest, sometimes I wonder what the world would be if everyone was like her. But then I realize that as is the sun one and only so is Tsveti. Of course we need more people who have her big heart, her enthusiasm, and her kindness. However, nobody is like her and nobody will ever be.

Tsveti defines herself as a dreamer: “I do consider myself a dreamer… and I believe that these dreams will happen at some point, maybe not in the near future, maybe not at all, but I will be trying to make them come true.” And I am sure that sooner or later what she truly wants will turn into reality, because when you want them madly, badly, and repeatedly, and when you have the courage to chase them, dreams always come alive.

As a kid Tsveti wanted to be a doctor. Actually, knowing how much she likes helping others, this was not a surprise for me at all: “I wouldn’t say that I fulfilled that dream, but it was actually a very big one. I really wanted to be helping people,” she told me. However, in the end she came to spread happiness here at AUBG, where medicine is still a taboo.

This smile... Photo: Anastasiia Hryshchenko
This smile… Photo: Anastasiia Hryshchenko

She found it difficult to tell me about a dream that she didn’t even try to make come true: “If you consider not going to a Broadway show, because your friends didn’t want to go to that show in particular, I would say so,” she  said with a note of regret in her voice.  As you may already know, Tsveti is an irreplaceable member of the Musical here at AUBG, but her passion, actually, started long before she came to the University. This past summer, while in the States, she really wanted to see Les Misérables on Broadway. However, her friends were up to something else, and she decided she can’t let her them go to another show alone (what a devoted friend, ah?). “Then I really regretted not seeing especially this musical on Broadway,” she added. But after all, what is the reason for watching a Broadway show if you cannot share this moment with your besties?!

Tsveti’s biggest dream was to be where she is now – at AUBG: “It was a dream for me to be studying here. It sounds cliché, I know. But it really was a dream!” During her first years in high school, similarly to many other young Bulgarians, Tsveti wanted to go abroad and to continue her education in a prestigious university far from Bulgaria. “Back then, I was blind in that sense,” she shared. However, after a profound research, she came to the realization that AUBG is actually the place for her: “I realized that it is actually a really cool place and a really want to go there. So it was really a dream coming true. And thankfully, AUBG exceeded my expectations.”

Hidden or not, her smile is always there! Photo: Anastasiia Hryshchenko
Hidden or not, her smile is still there! Photo: Anastasiia Hryshchenko

What does she want from the future? Well, she “still cannot find the answer” of this question. “The one thing that I am hundred percent sure is that whatever I do, whenever I do it, wherever I am, I need to be helping people in a way. I need to be doing something significant that will not be only of my personal benefit but also helping others in a sense. I just want to have other people share the happiness with me,” she told me.  (And believe me – she is able to give looooots of happiness.)

Her rules for making dreams come true are easy to remember:

  1. Work hard!
  2. Research beforehand!
  3. Put everything you have got in what you are doing!
  4. Be proud of what you are doing!

And the most important one:

  1. Do what brings you joy, because as Tsveti said “if it doesn’t bring you joy then nobody will feel it for you if you don’t feel it yourself.”

Tsveti is more than certain that “dreamers are very much needed” today.  “They are the people that give us another perspective. They bring the color and the happiness. They represent the other side.” It is true that the world needs dreamers. But it also needs doers.  The world simply needs more TsvetiS.

xoxo

P.S. Dear Tsveti, this is what we want to tell you:

And finally, my storify that was inspired by Tsveti!

https://storify.com/AUBGdreaming/she-smiles-all-the-time-she-inspired-my-second-sto

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Reflections in the Middle

Dear reader,

It is hard for me to acknowledge it, but with every single word I write, I am coming closer to the end of my MMJ journey. When I think about saying goodbye to this virtual shelter of mine, I feel as if I have to say goodbye to a something that is already part of me – something that I love and sincerely enjoy. But I am still in the middle of the road I am supposed to walk till the end of this semester, and the middle is not the end, so let’s keep the tears for December…

This week I won’t tell you a typical story or something new. This week I don’t have a victim. This week will be a reflection – a reflection on what I have learned through these six weeks as a MMJ student.

Autumn & Dreaming at AUBG:

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I am from those people who don’t make lists and who always come back with a bag full of unnecessary stuff – a bag that contains everything but the one thing I truly need. But this is something typical for the fair sex to which I happen to belong (which, by the way, is not an easy task, but that is another topic). However, in order not to miss something really important, this time I decided to go against my female nature and to prepare a short list of the most significant things I’ve learned for these 42 days as a MMJ blogger. Here it is:

  • Dream, but dream realistically! 

This is the main message Prof. Rodrigue shared with me when I interviewed him for my first story. ‘’Dream big, but dream big in something that you can actually do,” he told me. People like to say that there is nothing impossible. However, how true is this statement exactly? Can you go to Jupiter? Can you go back in time? No, or at least not in the near future. These things, unfortunately, can be only a product of our imagination. That’s why, dear reader, don’t waste your precious time and even more precious nerves in chasing what cannot be reached.

  • Don’t give up on your dreams!

Do you remember Kali? Of course, you do. Who can forget her?! This lesson is inspired by her and by her persistence when it comes to dreams: “I’ve come to learn that you don’t reach your dream because you’re destined to, but because you’re determined to, she shared with me. And if I have to be honest, I always try to believe in fate but I just can’t. I am a die-hard supporter of the idea that our story is not written for us, because it is us who are supposed to write it.

  • The journey matters, not the final destination!

Hristo Georgiev was the next person from whom I looked for some wisdom. And I definitely found what I wanted: Every single day you have to think of who you are trying to become and one day you become. And basically it is not the fact of becoming that makes you happy, but actually the process of doing it, because when you go back and see how much you have done, you feel that immense satisfaction of yourself, he told me. And he is totally right. When we are trying to reach our goals, sometimes we forget the real objective of starting chasing them. Yes, we will achieve what we are aiming at, but is this what really matters? Isn’t it the journey that teaches us more about our destination than the destination itself?

  • Stop dreaming! Act!

This was the message of Ivaylo Stefkov – my victim №4. His words may sound a bit controversial, but actually they are the very truth. If you wait for wind to take you where you dream to go, this will never happen. Wind is a powerful but ungrateful element. Don’t expect it to help you. Moreover, it is not its job to push you towards your destination. Well, eventually it will take you somewhere, but there is no guarantee that it will be the place you want to be. That’s why you better not count on it.

  • There is always a place for dreaming!

Of course, there is, because, as Anna Bashuk told me last week,otherwise it is boring to live!”  Yet, if life was a grey movie, it would have been dreams that would bring color to it.

In case the “fall break spirit” has already conquered you, or you are just too lazy to read, this video summarizes what I want to tell you:

This is all for this week, my dear reader. Now, you can go back to dreaming!

Xoxo

P.S. To all MMJ people – Have an incredible and memorable fall break! Indulge yourself in idleness to the max!

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Midterm Exam and A Dream Coming True

Dear readers,

Today was the day – the midterm day! I had an assignment to find a news story related in a way to the topic of my blog and to write a post about the reaction of the AUBG students to it. Here is what I found about the dream of one 66-year-old American:

Lary Hester, 66, who has been blind for almost half his life due to a condition known as retinitis pigmentosa, is able to see the light again. A month ago, professionals from the Duke Eye Center in North Carolina implemented an electronic stimulator in the man’s left eye. At the beginning of October, the device was turned on for the first time. It does not restore vision completely, but it allows its users to differentiate shades and shapes. For Hester, the most important advantage of the electronic stimulator is that he can see his wife again.

Lary Hester Photo: www.dailymail.co.uk
Lary Hester Photo: http://www.dailymail.co.uk

After hearing the news about Lary Hester, Desislava Nikolova, a sophomore at the American University in Bulgaria, decided to begin an interesting initiative on campus – a new club called “Positive Thinkiers.” She believes that  “after the tragedy last week the AUBG community needs to hear about more positive things.”

Parts from my interview with Desislava Nikolova:

Desislava Nikolova Photo: Personal Archive
Desislava Nikolova

Her message to all AUBG students is: “Dream! Hope! Believe! And always, always smile!”

Here is my News Package:

Lesson №5: There is always a place for dreaming!

Dear reader,

If you ask me to describe my next interviewee in one word, I will choose “an adventurer.” But I know that this won’t help you out, so let me give you some more clues…

She is a junior at the American University in Bulgaris (AUBG). She is from Russia. She studies Journalism and Mass Communication. She is in my Multimedia Journalism class (I know that this brings the options almost to one). She is the most radiant person I know. She has a great sense of humor. She is interested in “photography, layout, reading, writing, walking, traveling” and “moving around all the time.” Yes, she is …. Anna Bashuk!

Anna in Baraboo, WI, USA. Photo: Personal Archive
Anna in Baraboo, WI, USA. Photo: Personal Archive

I would say that Anna is not the typical dreamer. I would call her a what-if-dreamer, because she is from those people who don’t imagine things they know will never come true. She is from those who think of the “alternative scenarios” of what has already happened and who always try “to think of something that is possible to achieve.”

As a kid Anna wanted to be a singer, although she believes that she “can’t sing and everyone knows it” (I still don’t). She used to make up songs and to perform them in the yard of her house together with her friend. The most interesting part of the story she shared was the one about the bottles of water that were the perfect substitutes for microphones during their concerts. This brought much more color to the anyway vivid picture in my head. “Once we invited our parents”, she recalled, “and probably that’s when my dream ended,” she added and we both burst into laughter. And actually her saying that this happened somewhere [when she was] between one and seven” didn’t help us stop.

In Volda, Norway. Photo: Personal Archive
In Volda, Norway. Photo: Personal Archive

This dream didn’t work out very well and I guess her neighbors were more than thankful and relieved back then.

When she learned to read, however, something not less creative came to her mind – she “wanted to write books for kids.” She didn’t specify the exact time when this idea first struck her, but I guess it was somewhere between seven and twelve. This dream though ended right when it started” and it is not something that she can imagine herself doing nowadays, although she still enjoys writing but, you know, different kind of writing.

On the question about the dreams she has already made a reality, her instantaneous answer was: “I am here!” She wanted to go abroad and to be more independent – something that she definitely achieved after coming to AUBG: “When you are 16 or 17, you want it [to be more independent] so bad that it becomes a dream. So, once I got here it was a little dream coming true.”

In Green Bay, WI, USA; Photo: Personal Archive
Geirangerfjorden, Norway. Photo: Personal Archive

As I have already mentioned, Anna’s greatest passion is travelling and her biggest dreams, both past and present, are somehow oriented in this direction. Her wanderlust reminded me of one of the few quotes I was able to learn by heart, one by Hans Christian Anderson:

“To move, to breathe, to fly, to float,

To gain all while you give,

To roam the roads of land remote,

To travel is to live.”

Well, then Anna definitely lives life to the fullest.

In Green Bay, WI, USA. Photo: Personal Archive
In Green Bay, WI, USA. Photo: Personal Archive

“I want to have a job which is going to allow me to move as much as I can. I hate being stuck in one place.” One day she dreams of going to Australia. In fact, this comes from one of her childhood dreams to see Hugh Jackman – her favorite actor, though nowadays this has nothing to do with her desire to visit and explore the deepest and the most mysterious places in the world. To see the Northern Lights is next in her to-do list. But she doesn’t want to see them through the lens as most people do. She wants to be on the place where you can actually see them with your eyes.” But as she herself admits she will need lots of time and even more money to bring these dreams to life.

 In Chicago, IL, USA. Photo: Personal Archive
In Chicago, IL, USA. Photo: Personal Archive

Anna believes that “there is always place for dreaming, because otherwise it is boring to live!” Dreams are magic. No matter whether they come true or not, they make our lives much more colorful. They allow us escape the harsh reality we face every single day.They help us keep the smile on our faces even when the sun in our lives goes down. Dreams make us open our eyes in the morning. Dreams make our hearts beat faster every time we allow them to conquer our minds. More or less, they help us survive! That’s why, dear reader, keep dreaming, because you never know when a power much stronger than the magic of dreams will make you close your eyes forever!

P.S. My stomach and my mouth still hurt from laughing during this interview. Thanks, Anna, for the most pleasant pain and for the most productive abs workout ever!

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