From a small village when my great-grandparents grew up, the city had exploded since the war to about seven million subjects . Skalitsa lies in southeastern Bulgaria and was now a tourist destination for skiers on the 300m slopes in the winter and visitors to the Black Sea on the eastern coast.
My great-grandparents were wanders, farmers, and when the wars began, they immigrated to America.
I walked through the market square admiring the local vendors wares when I spied an unusual object on one of the tables. It was two stones wrapped up together with a tag that said Healing Stones.
"What are these?" I asked aloud.
"Healing stones for your aches and pains, very good medicine," the proprietor said in halted English.
"How do you know that?" I asked with skepticism.
"Go up near the mountain, follow the signs to where the large stones lay. This town is well known for them. See for yourself, then come back to me and buy these to take home." He finished his promotion with a toothy grin.
What could I lose? I had the time. Following the signs marked Famous Healing Stones, I left the market area.
After walking to what seemed to be about three miles, I saw the large flat granite stones soaking up the afternoon sun rays. Upon one was an elderly man who had just sat up and crawled off.
"Do they work?" I asked him when he came toward me on the path.
"I feel 100% better, try it," he said, then walked on.
I noticed a small sign nearby that said, "Magnetic Stones. The only place of aside from Mexico where the stones magnetic field cross."
I'm not sure if it was the magnetism or the heat from the rocks, but after thirty minutes of laying there, I felt no pain. I think I will buy those rocks from the vendor. He deserves something for letting me know about this.