by Rumen Spasov
“Almost Intimately” by Irina Papancheva (publishing house Kronos, 2007) could be defined as a diary of a female spirit, searching for itself in the exciting spaces of the university culture of the Sofia Students’ town, of fusion with the Bulgarian nature and also with Prague…The reader gets the feeling of a well-travelled Bulgarian female character, emancipated and self-confident, frank almost to the point of exhibitionism, creating the feeling that she would manage anywhere in the world. The story, written from a female perspective, describes the search for self-perfection, the refusal to be bound by routine and to accept that human relationships can be fruitless, with overcoming transiency in a search of a real friendship – a friendship which paradoxically contains both lasting bitterness and reconciliation. At the end there is an optimistic, full of life feeling for the future, germinating from the personal experience.
“Am. And not just am but I am an emancipated and independent woman…” – these are the key words to the understanding and the immersing into this aesthetic feast, full of dynamic contemporaneity, flowing into exquisite eroticism, at places, shared by the main female character for whom “…the emotional orgasm is stronger than the physical one”, even though arguably within the framework of the human wholeness there is no such division.