Granny, I’m marrying a vegetarian

Petya (Bulgaria) and Kyle (USA)

My grandparents are sweet simple people. They live in a small village up in the Mountains of Bulgaria and spend most of their time working their land and taking care of their animals. They always look forward to Christmas when, traditionally, the entire extended family gets together for a big feast. We usually eat pork that came off the back (or butt) of a pig they had been raising themselves.

Grandma was a little bit suspicious when she found out I was planning to marry an American boy. Her suspicion turned into outrage when she found out that Kyle was not only American but also vegetarian.

What do you mean he doesn’t eat meat?
Well, he doesn’t, Grandma.
No meat at all? Ever? Not even for dinner?
No. No. No. He’s been vegetarian for most of his life.
What do you mean most of his life?
He’s been vegetarian since he was 15.
Does his mother know he doesn’t eat meat?
She does, Grandma. She does.

Grandma is quiet for a little while. I know she’s trying to come to peace with the idea that she will have a foreign non-meateater in her family soon and she will simply have to accept that. I also know she loves me more than anything and in her silence I recognize a true effort to stay positive. Still, she really seems to be struggling with the whole vegetarianism thing. It really is THAT BAD for her. Eventually, she breaks the silence:

OK, so… he’s vegetarian. But does he drink?
Well… I am not sure how to answer, but I choose to say the truth. He does drink, yes.
OH! GOOD! You should have just told me earlier.

She seemed SO happy and relieved. And I guess she was right. I should have told her earlier.

Petya has a whole blog dedicated to her cross-cultural marriage. In her words it is ‘an ongoing story about travel, cross-cultural (mis)-understanding and running-ins with immigration authorities on both sides of the Atlantic ocean’

Go and have a look at How to Marry a Bulgarian.

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4 Comments

  • I must say this is a very interesting blog! It is the first time I come across a blog like this and it is such a great idea. It’s nice to read other people’s stories, some are interesting and it’s always good to know other people’s way of thinking and seeing both sides of the story!
    Good on you who created this blog, I’ll sure be coming back to read more!
    Thanks for visiting my blog by the way!

  • Hello and thanks for visiting! I’m glad you enjoyed it. Hope to see you again soon.

  • love Bulgarian Grannies :) Mine is from Lovech. She’s very pleased I eat meat and that I hate veggies. So much that I am gaining a bit of weight. As colombian I find Bulgarian food pleasing. Traditional Colombian food is basically power food. It means lots of potatoes, beans, meat and soups. Little Salad. I think traditional Bulgarian food is very rich in terms of flavor.My wife is fighting back with Salads however, but granny always says: ” Salad? I thought you love him, not hate him!.” I try to please my wife, but then baba goes: ” glupusti!eat kid, eat! and then she throws some of hwer food in my plate” Then, there’s this very intense exchange in Bulgarian between baba and my wife, it looks like they are going to fight, but they are actually ” talking” about it :P hilarious!

  • Great story! I come from the UK, where people are generally quite calm, so I always find it difficult to know whether my friends and family from Southern Europe are arguing or just being animated! Sometimes it seems to me like there’s a huge fight going on, but really they are just having a discussion.