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Bulgaria Is Full Of ‘Squat Shops’ Where People Have To Squat To Buy Stuff

Squatting is obviously in Slavic blood for sure

Photo: © ivaylo getov 2008

Let us introduce to you a small business that is called “Squat Shop”, they are very popular in Bulgaria ever since late 80’s when private ownership and production was legalized. These interesting shops are operated out of the basement cellar windows, however somehow these kind of shops survived despite more rational storefronts becoming available.

These mini-shops have gotten into the hearts of people and remain lucrative business till this day. Most common products sold there are cigarettes or some juices and sodas to help the thirsty people waiting on bus stops.

© ivaylo getov 2008

Thing with them is they are quite eye-catchy, filled with alcohol, coffee, cigarettes in bright colorful displays.

© ivaylo getov 2008

They were called “klek” (squat) shops and you could find them almost in every street in Sofia, thanks to visual artist Ivaylo Getov who made this great photo series about the ‘klek’ shops you can witness this phenomenon.

© ivaylo getov 2008

Unfortunately these shops are disappearing slowly, while some remain open as they have turned into a tourist attraction.

© ivaylo getov 2008

They remind of the times when Bulgarians broke with communism and many people garbed the chance to sell stuff from their basements to try their chances in a new capitalist system.

© ivaylo getov 2008
© ivaylo getov 2008
© ivaylo getov 2008
© ivaylo getov 2008

© ivaylo getov 2008

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