Today our group had the first of two opportunities to visit the Rehabilitation Center in Stolat. The Center is one of the premier rehabilitation facilities in Bulgaria, and is home to about 45 people. After meeting with the resident director and physiotherapist, we split up and met the senior residents we would be evaluating and planning treatments for. Despite the language barrier, we were able to form meaningful connections with the residents at the center. We spent about an hour evaluating the residents’ range of motion, muscle strength, vision, and mobility.
After a brief break for lunch, we did a group activity with some of the residents to increase their social participation and engage them in some movement. It was an incredibly fulfilling experience. We all felt very fortunate to have had the opportunity to meet and work with these kind and interesting residents. They were so welcoming and willing to show us their physical abilities, and they really seemed happy to have had the chance to socialize with us.
We had another delicious meal at the Dan Kolov restaurant and then made an impromptu decision to visit the nearby Dryanovo Monastery, “St. Archangel Michael”. It was up in the hills and simply gorgeous.
We wandered around the grounds where there were beautiful orthodox sculptures, buildings, and frescoes. We also explored the Bacho Kiro caves.
A few of us went on what we thought would be a short hike, and ended up scaling a mountain! We were thrilled to find ourselves at the top at the most picturesque lookout, and spent a few minutes in awe of the view and of how lucky we were to have had the opportunity to go on this trip. We all agreed that our experience of Bulgaria was much more than we could ever have imagined.