I’m Bulgarian and I don’t understand York

Don’t get me started on gravy

bulgaria international student university york

Moving to another country is pretty damn exciting.

But while we tend to focus only on the positive things about moving, the negatives are easily overlooked. Then you move in and face a reality which is seriously different to what you were expecting.

York is nothing like Bulgaria – and I learnt this the hard way.

Why do you have two taps?

This is the first thing I noticed. Why are there two? Why are my only options scalding or freezing?


I had to ring my mum and complain about the devastating conditions over here.

My life is really complicated now. In the mornings I spend about 20 minutes to wash my hands, face and teeth, only because I need to mix cold and hot water three times.  

Where are the non-stop shops?

I’m that type of person who likes to binge on junk food at 1am. Yes, we do that in Bulgaria, so it’s really surprising to find out there no 24-hour shops in York. Or at least I haven’t found one yet.

Clothes shops are the worst. What if I have a crisis in the Salvation queue and decide to shake up my look? Thanks Zara for your selfish opening hours

What even is this

Even the clubs close early. You’re all a set of part-timers. I’m used to rolling out of clubs at 6am, in time for the McDonald’s breakfast menu. Anything before 3am is disgraceful.

It will be difficult for me to get used to, but hopefully I’ll adjust.

What is the Yorkshire accent?

Before coming in York, I’ll admit I was warned about there being “an accent” in the North of England.

I thought I’d manage. During my first two weeks, It was as if I’d never learnt English.

Why do you name houses?

Definitely, this is one of the most confusing things I’ve seen. Like, every house has a different name. What was wrong with numbers?


Children should be named. Not houses.

Why did no-one tell me York is the most haunted city in England?

Are you telling me that on my walk home after a night out, the spirit of some baker’s dead daughter will appear in front of me and scream in my face? If so, I’m packing my bags and leaving.

A student might do that though. I wouldn’t be surprised.

Thanks, skirting board of knowledge

Where are the tables in nightclubs?

Beyond the ridiculous opening times, the other thing I don’t understand is why there are so few tables in the clubs. Bulgaria do things properly.

Absolutely ballin’

There are more tables and dancefloors. It’s really comfortable because you can leave your stuff like purses, drink, jackets, hipflasks – the lot, and enjoy dancing.

In York we’re forced to take drinks onto the floor as if we’re slow-dancing with them. Vodka and Coke stains are a nightmare to get out.

There’s a pub on campus?

This was a welcome surprise. Like, this is the coolest thing ever.

Obviously, Bulgaria has pubs near the unis, but never on campus. I guess this makes me like York a little more.


Despite the atrocities, York is stunning – but you all really do need to sort out your tap situation.