Outside of Galin's guesthouse I awaited our tv interview. It was a big tv interview, a bit like Jonathan Ross but in Bulgarian and the host would be female. When I say host, she was an interviewer and didn't have her own studio like on the Jonathan Ross show. It would be an interview, street side, to give it that gritty and more realistic feel. Furthermore, the TV channel was a bit smaller, a bit more local. But in all other respects it was much like being on the Jonathan Ross Show.
With this in mind I looked both ways down the road for the film crew and truck. Before me stood our woman, with her microphone, and a guy, with a camera. With no sign of any make-up team (they must have been late) I ran a hand through my hair. It was ok since I had showered that morning and was ready for the big appearance. I was looking great, like a young George Clooney who had been growing his hair for five months and lived permanently in sandals.
And then we were ready, Nathan and I. The black and white clacker fell and the camera started to roll. The woman gave us questions and we gave her answers. We gave answers long enough to provide a beautifully articulated and flowing interview, yet short enough for the translator, a third man who had arrived on the scene, to remember and repeat back to her in Bulgarian. He was a good translator. I think.
As conversation flowed back and forth, with short pauses for the translator to work his magic, the interviewer smiled at me. She knew I was a natural. I knew I was a natural. I am a natural. While Nathan talked, I glanced into the camera lens, flashing an 8 million strong audience a glint of my hazelnut eyes, and then I was back answering questions, knowing I'd left those at home hanging on my every word.
"Why Bulgaria?" She asked, "Do you like Kavarna?" She asked, "How did you come up with the idea?" She asked. As I said, it was just like being on Jonathan Ross. The translator repeated my answers and I wondered if the lighting was alright. Did my baby blue t-shirt enhance the appearance of my glorious tan? How well did the camera capture the way the evening breeze rustled my hair?
Before I had time to ponder any further, the interviewer had turned away to face the camera and was wrapping up her work. She asked, finally, whether we planned any future adventures. Nathan said no. I said yes. We all laughed. I laughed for slightly longer than the others, grinning my teeth and throwing a sideways glance into the camera lens. The camera loved me. The woman signed off her report and I offered an ending wink.
After the interview we briefly towed the canoe down the road, displaying the object of glory on its shitty wheels and flexing our biceps. I showed my wooden paddle, the camera man moving slowly up and down. But already the interviewer's mind had moved on and the camera man grew restless. The interview was over and my magnetic captivation of their audience was already caught on film. They had what they needed, so they left.