Rose-Picking in the Rose Valley
The Rose Valley in Bulgaria is famous for its rose-growing industry which has been cultivated there for centuries, and which produces 85% of the world's rose oil. The picking season lasts from May to June and Wikipedia mentions that during this period, the area gives off a pleasant scent. I will call Wikipedia out for making such a severe understatement - the whole valley actually smells like perfume during this time. Any time we would drive through it in May or June, we would always roll down our windows and soak it all in!
Today, I got an even closer look (ahem, sniff) at these gorgeous plants as I got a chance to take some pictures of the gathering process. Traditionally a woman's task, it requires great dexterity and patience because the flowers are carefully cut one by one and then sent to the distilleries. And the local gypsy women are the masters at it - the same ladies who were so sweet and generous to pose for me. The cherry on top was them gifting me a few of the roses to take home!
Lovely treat for a lovely day. Happy Tuesday!