Teddy Bear Two-Step

Vitosha Mountain, Sofia, Bulgaria

Vitosha under threat

There’s a song I learned when very young that, despite it’s apparently carefree scenario, always scared me a little.

I’ve been reminded of this ditty recently, as Bulgaria controversially tackles amendments to the Forestry Law. There have been mass protests in Sofia and other cities, and counter-demonstrations allegedly masterminded by the ruling party and a handful of interested parties.

The amendments to the law were approved in parliament, and sent to the President, who vetoed the proposals. The Bulgarian National Assembly duly accepted the veto, and will continue to work on amended proposals, given the general outcry of anger and resistance.

Protestors basically complain that:

“They are not satisfied with the fact that the act:

1. Presents state aid to private corporations, for which the EC has criticised Bulgaria;

2. Allows construction works under the Public-Private partnership Act instead of through public tenders;

3. Favours the Vitosha Ski Company;

4. Allows over-construction due to the extended scope of acceptable construction;

5. Allows clearing of the forests without plan.”

If you go down to the woods today…

So, here’s the song, with lyrics composed in 1932 by an Irish songwriter, Jimmy Kennedy, to a melody dating back to 1907. Originally called the ‘Teddy Bear Two-Step’, it’s also known as ‘The Teddy Bears Picnic’.

My sole question is: who are the Bulgarian Teddy Bears, in reality?

If you go down to the woods today
You’re sure of a big surprise
If you go down to the woods today
You’d better go in disguise.

For every bear that ever there was
Will gather there for certain, because
Today’s the day the Teddy Bears have their picnic.

Every Teddy Bear who’s been good
Is sure of a treat today.
There’s lots of marvellous things to eat
And wonderful games to play.

Beneath the trees where nobody sees
They’ll hide and seek as long as they please
‘Cause that’s the way the Teddy Bears have their picnic.

If you go down to the woods today
You’d better not go alone
It’s lovely down in the woods today
But safer to stay at home.

For every bear that ever there was
Will gather there for certain, because
Today’s the day the Teddy Bears have their picnic.

 Image source: http://www.sofia-city.info/
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