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Elsa Peters
December 1, 2013, 5:44am Report to Moderator

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Sunday 1st December

Good morning and the answer didn't come on a postcard but in an email.  His memory was jogged or one of 'those upstairs' sent him a message and here is wiki's take on the fruits from yesterday...

'Maclura pomifera, commonly called Osage orange, hedge apple, horse apple, monkey ball, bois d'arc, bodark, or bodock is a small deciduous tree or large shrub, typically growing to 8–15 metres (26–49 ft) tall. It is dioecious, with male and female flowers on different plants. The fruit from a multiple fruit family, is roughly spherical, but bumpy, and 7.6–15 centimetres (3–6 in) in diameter. It is filled with a sticky white latex. In fall, its color turns a bright yellow-green. It is not closely related to the orange: Maclura belongs to the mulberry family, Moraceae, while oranges belong to the family Rutaceae.'

So now have it and look what I've saved you on postage....almost eight my time...the day is before me....have a good one...  
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Elsa Peters
December 1, 2013, 4:22pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday continued

Cold this morning but the fire was still in so I rescued it.  The day warmed up but I let the fire tick over all day and tonight the house is toasty warm.  Remsier came round this morning and it was for nothing in particular,  We discussed the weather, the general state of play but there was nothing she wanted but the photographs from the baby party but I'll do them tomorrow.  I had to change every cartridge on the printer.  It didn't tell me that it wasn't working but the yellow was not printing at all.  So much for Brother printers.

Read for a while this afternoon and thought I would get my head down but only managed about an hour.  I had such a vivid dream that I think I was better awake.  Cooked spaghetti bolognaise and it was a toss up as to whether it had beans thrown in and became a chilli but I thought Avatar would prefer it 'au naturel'.  Dear Tommy her dog was champing at the bit when I arrived at the gate but he'll get what's left tomorrow...tonight it's mine and theirs.

Put some food out for today into the burning pit and set fire to it but there was a general rush of cats and magpies for the remains.  At one point there were five magpies around the cat but it was not intimidated....cat had her/his fill and then they encroached.  

Supper over and delicious....a little mastica on the go and then down to the fire and my book.  I've started book four...so far so good...LN...enjoy your evening.




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Elsa Peters
December 2, 2013, 5:57pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 2nd December

Four thirty start, read for a while and then back off again until just before seven.  Sleep pattern is all to blazes since I get so tired in the evening, have a nap and then expect to do the complete eight hours but it doesn't work like that.  

Lazy morning because there was nothing to get going for and it was damp and cold.  Sudden  burst of energy and I was washed, dressed and tried to get a loaf of bread out of the freezer and the second drawer had stuck fast.  The ice had seized hold of one of the packs of meat and there was just no go.  Unplugged the cable, ran upstairs to get the hairdryer, emptied what I could and waited for the hairdryer to do its stuff and everything back and ready to replace the plug after about half an hour.  The surge of activity stayed with me for the rest of the day.  The discarded planks of wood that should have been stored in the house before the men left are now ...stored in the house.  The rest of the debris has been sorted and is either ready for the wood burner or stacked to be used again.  The metal that is supposedly for the remainder of the wall was on the floor of the garage and I had to drive over it to get the car in.  Again that's in the little house and the garage is now swept, the fallen leaves collected and burnt and the bits of metal put into a container.  All this activity took me until four thirty this afternoon and the temperature began to drop and sleet was falling but that seems to have petered out.

Fire has been going most of the day and it's been very welcome as I've popped in and out.  Supper was the remains of last night's spaghetti bolognaise and a couple of chocolate biscuits to help it down and now back to my book.   No photos today, it was just too dark by the time that I'd been back and forward from the yard to the little house but at least I feel that it's tidy for the winter.  LN...it's been an active day...
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Elsa Peters
December 3, 2013, 6:48am Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 3rd December

Six fifteen this morning so it's getting better.  There was a glimmer of light over the mountains that got better and better and now, that little ball of hot stuff in the sky is flooding the house with light and warmth so not much wood for me today.  Heck of a wind though and as I stood outside on my bedroom balcony taking photos this morning, it fair cut through my little fleecies so I didn't linger too long.

There must have been quite a wind in the night too as I notice several garden accoutrements have been on the move namely my antique woodburner and that is now partly under the Beast.  A plastic bowl was scurrying about the lounge terrace at one this morning but it didn't disturb me for long and I let it have its fun.  Eight thirty my time....when it warms up I'm out to make a real start on the metal bank...I've looked at it for long enough and it's time it went...alternatively I could get my knitting out and become creative but the clothes from Turkey for ten leva take a lot of beating.  I've even photographed it for you...it's so cosy and warm and is one more layer to the 'winter cabbage' that we all become with so many layers.

Toast for breakfast, but I should have left the bread out yesterday when I defrosted the freezer but  I can now afford to get good stuff in there now that I've ditched the 'bits' that we all accumulate with the intention of getting them out and doing something with them.  Well I did something with them....I threw them over the hedge for my army of cats that patrol the garden and its perimeters.  Now to horse....



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Elsa Peters
December 3, 2013, 7:36pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday update

Well the metal mound is still there...the weather didn't go much above the zero and the wind was howling all day.  It took quite a few pegs to keep some of the washing on the line and as it was my jeans escaped...but fortunately they fell where I could retrieve them.  All was safely gathered in...I only put out the towels, jeans and a sweater...the rest went on the airer in the bathroom.

Fire going all day.  Read for most of the afternoon but this evening decided to ball up a couple of skeins of wool,  First one went OK, second one reminded me somewhat of spaghetti and the same colour...but I stuck with it and I've started a set of wrist warmers for my Avatar for including in her Christmas goody bag.  If the weather stays like this she'll be needing them on her trips to the outside privy....

Nine thirty my time....almost time to get my little head down but not had a nap today so hoping it's a seven start tomorrow...I'll miss sunrise but hey...I've captured most of them to date....LN...I've got a fire to attend to said Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrue, Cuthbert, Dibble and Grub...if my memory serves me correctly....   LN
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Elsa Peters
December 4, 2013, 5:04pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 4th December

Seven o'clock start this morning...it seems to be working.  Beautiful sunny day ...now....but minus six showing on the thermometer with a front over the Greek mountains when I went out earlier to empty the ash can.  Lit the fire and went to get the wood in and I should know better by now to do it with just the PJ's on but hey, it took all of five minutes but that wind was fair whistling again. Washed and dressed, didn't feel much like breakfast and if you don't, why force yourself.  Got the sewing machine out and did a job that I'd thought about for a while and not got round to.  The fleece blanket that the boys ruined while clearing the grass in the early part of the year is now made into a door curtain and permanently attached to it's own pole so that I don't have to juggle it each evening.  I also made a Christmas present and I can't tell you more, it would spoil it.  Had another go at cleaning the stairwell windows....I've got to organise some sort of platform...the brain is thinking about it.

Phoned the Librarian for an update on the parcel saga and they are still waiting for customs to release it from Sofia....not looking good at this point and DHL is having to earn it's fees....I think the solution is to have it readdressed to the UK...it's much simpler there.  So I was sitting in the hallway in the sun and I suddenly felt very warm and looked at the thermometer and it was showing thirty seven.  Now those that have visited my home know that it's almost like living in a conservatory but when it's on 'freezing' outside, it just shows what a good friend the sun can be.  As for the fire, I'd only got a couple of logs on it.  Two of the clock into Djebel in the Beast armed with a shopping list. Bread, black wool to finish the present, diesel for the Beast so that it doesn't freeze and an assortment of little presents to make up the goodie bags for my neighbours.  Jobs-a-guddun but I forgot the wrapping paper so it's back to the shops tomorrow.

Home at five, the fire was still ticking along nicely, moved some more wood inside under the wood burner to dry out, did my emails and found a cruise going round the Orkney Islands in May from Scotland that looks promising.  Fed Tommy the remains of everything that I had left from the Chicken curry that I was making and now down to my fire, my knitting and I think it's going to be an Irish coffee this evening....sounds like a plan...LN
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Elsa Peters
December 5, 2013, 8:59pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 5th December

Up nice and early this morning, fire still going from last night so rescued it.  Eight o'clock was on the phone to the Librarian asking her if she wanted to come and play today.  I suggested a visit to Kardjali, a mouch round the shops, see what we could pick up for very little, I wanted to buy the wool to finish the present that I couldn't get yesterday and we could have lunch in town.  The answer was yes and who wouldn't be tempted by such an offer so she was here at nine thirty after finishing off her chores and we set off at about ten.  Did my dress shop and picked up a Doris Streich black evening top for three leva fifty (that's about one seventy to you and me) and a bronze coloured over top for four fifty so I have my Christmas outfit sorted.  I t would also have been rude not to snap up a polo neck sweater and a Christopher and Banks woolen cardigan spending yet another eleven leva so total spend,,,about a tenner.  As for the Librarian...she managed to pick up a ski type jacket for working in the garden or just leaving in the jeep for five leva and again I say...rude not to.

Over to one of the dinky do shops and got the christmas presents for the girls which were beautifully gift wrapped for free, picked up a set of six egg cups since the ones that I use allow the eggs to rotate or simply disappear 'somewhere down there' and a couple of christmas table trees which were original and pretty with it.  On to the wool shop and got another present and two kilograms of wool for nine leva a kilogram, one black and the other brown with bobbles, on to lunch, half chicken each with chippies and salad, into the mosque toilets for a brief interlude then off to our favourite leva shop to try to track down wrapping paper for the presents to no avail. There are lots of gift bags but for the ladies of my village I like to wrap the presents individually and they are used to that after three years and come to expect it and finally to the market to get a couple of fleece blankets for the second of Librarian's presents.  

Home for four thirty, quick cup of coffee with the Librarian and gave my fire the kiss of life and back in the car to meet Gouldjan in Djebel at five at the school for a night of fun and festivities in one of the local restaurants.  As it turned out, two her friends appeared but we disappeared to go to the town to track down the illusive wrapping paper which we did so tomorrow I can do everything that I need to do.  I am moving towards my departure.  Back to the gathering and only two others arrived so we sat around for a while and I answered twenty questions as to why I am in Bulgaria and eventually I suggested that we made a move because I was hungry and there was no food in the offing and I was drinking orange juice.  We made out leave and set out for my favourite restaurant and ordered chicken livers, salad and cheesy chips with an apricot juice this time since the Beast was still waiting to get back to the stable....and at nine thirty I dropped Gouldjan off and headed home even managing to get the Beast into the drive.

Unpacked some of the shopping and the rest can wait...We had a lovely time this morning and it was good to get Gouldjan out for a meal and a chat...we haven't done that for a while either.  Coffee and Brandy at my elbow...so pleased with my purchases today...I do love a good bargain and Doris Streich is one of my favourite designers.  LN....so chilled....and talking of which...it was minus three as we were heading home...brrrr...LN



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Elsa Peters
December 6, 2013, 5:16am Report to Moderator

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Friday 6th December

Another beautiful day looming and the mist is rising...where did this adage come from that a red sky in the morning is a shepherd's warning?....I don't think it applies to Bulgaria....and I suppose I could steal a march on the day...nice and early and I have lots to do...catch you later...



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Elsa Peters
December 6, 2013, 4:53pm Report to Moderator

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Friday continued

Brilliant start to the day and worked well.  Brought my outside table into the lounge and my sun lounger into the workshop, the one outside bench into my downstairs bedroom and it's at times like this that you need another pair of hands to get the other end of the thing that you are trying to move.  Having said that ...all is safely gathered in and the plants and pots are now in the little house to keep them safe from the frost.  There are even lower temperatures forecast but tonight doesn't seem so cold as last night.  

Settled down on the sofa in the hall with a book and a bar of extra cocoa chocolate at about four this afternoon after today's exertion and woke up at five thirty to the dying embers of the woodburner in the dark but that was soon remedied.  Lamp on, quick poker job on the fire, added a couple of logs and off we go again.  Just added some coal and another big log and that should do it for the night.

Had trouble getting on Google tonight.  I'd been listening to radio two this afternoon just before I went off to nodsville, heard it go quiet and then when I tried to reconnect I kept getting the message that it was resolving host.  All seems sorted now after restarting it a couple of times...maybe a glitch.  So after my bar of chocolate I can't say that there are any hunger pains rattling around so I might be light on calories this evening but don't think there's much chance of me fading away just yet.  Present packing tomorrow I think....it didn't get done today but I really have nowhere to go tomorrow and it's a nice feeling.  Moon out and there's a large 'something' hanging in there underneath it....I must check out what it is and now back to my book and the fire.  LN....I'm getting ready for departure...in slow easy stages...LN
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Elsa Peters
December 7, 2013, 5:24pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 7th December

Seven o'clock start without any interruptions and fire salvaged.  Dull start to the day with a biting wind that rattled through the PJ's when I went to empty the ash can.  Hungry this morning....I didn't eat last night and so it was a half can of beans on toast for breakfast and decided that the cooker could do with a good clean ready for the new year....don't try and join up the thought process...there wasn't a lot going on this morning.  Cats had a field day...the curry that I'd made out of the two old chicken legs from the freezer clearout should never have seen the light of day.  I should have disposed of them from the onset but you know what it's like....economy is saturated in the bones but then the stomach says no....and I couldn't bring myself to eat it but there was a very ginger tom with a very ginger looking curry mouth.

So settled in and carried on with the present I'm making and it's very close to being finished...as I said can't tell you too much about it because then the cat would be out of the bag and it's not a curry faced one.  Found last years Christmas tree decorations and realised that they are too big for the little artificial ones that I bought from Kardjali and it's as well that I got a couple of boxes of mini-decorations.  The rope of lights is on the wall of the little house and Santa is climbing the ladder by the main house front door but not sure how much of it will be left by morning...we have gale force winds blowing but mostly gusting stripping trees of their final leaves and bringing with it a snow flurry this afternoon which turned into nothing more serious.

Cooked fish fingers and chippies for a late lunch, read this afternoon and those presents are still waiting for their wrappings.  I did make the gift tags this morning so I'm one step on the way but the eyes headed downwards as the words on the Kindle blended together and woke up about an hour later.  Closed up for the night...again I don't suppose I shall be wanting supper after munching my way through lunch and tomorrow I'm Djebel bound for my student and family.  We're making lasagne together for lunch, they've not done it before and since Mum's lasagne used to be my son's favourite, I'll give it my best shot.

Seven fifteen my time...I'm beginning to feel a little Christmassy with the fairy lights twinkling in the hall way and this time next week I'll be at the airport hopefully waiting for the plane.  I bet this week flies by...



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