The first thing I did when cycling into the center of Ruse, Bulgaria the night before was run into these two Mormon Missionaries. While I don’t have the same beliefs, I always like to talk to the Mormon missionaries on my travels because 1) there is a good chance that at least one of them speaks English (and after days/weeks/months of being along in a foreign country it is sometimes nice to have someone to talk to) and 2) I currently live in Utah (which is where the Mormon church is based), so there is a good chance at least one of the missionaries is from Utah.
When I asked if these two young women were from Utah, however, they were quick to tell me that they were not. They were from California! And that’s when I had to explain that I am from Southern California (grew up there, went to college there, all my family is there), but that I currently live in Utah. And no, I had to explain, I am not a member of the church. Almost everyone thinks that if you live in Utah you MUST be a Mormon, but that’s simply not the case.
Anyway, I spoke with the ladies for a bit and then they helped me find a hotel in Ruse for the night. I thanked the ladies, shook their hands and never thought I’d see them again. But the following afternoon, right after checking out of my hotel and trading in all my remaining Bulgarian Lev, Turkish Lira and British Pounds for 260 Romania Leu, I spotted the girls (their names are Lindsay and Ainsley by the way) down the main boulevard. So I rode over on my bicycle, thanked them again for helping me find my hotel the night before, and then snapped this quick photo of the pair before cycling across town, riding over the bridge and entering Romania.