Image courtesy of Josua De on Unsplash.

At every breakfast I had as a child in Koprivshtitsa, my grandparents insisted that I had my cup full of milk.  The milk came directly from the barn of one of my grandmother’s close acquaintances.  It was unpasteurized and non-homogenized, and my grandparents boiled it twice to minimize the risk of getting sick.  No communist factory had messed this milk up.  It had not been watered down or processed to kill contamination.  Neither had it been forced through tubes, poured into dull-looking plastic packaging and sealed shut, so that a grumpy seller could slam down this product of the communist economy in front of a customer, addressing him or her as “comrade.”  A comrade who might as well have been number 57 in line.  Five more customers served and the rest of the comrades waiting would be turned away to head home empty-handed.

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