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Elsa Peters
July 18, 2014, 6:41pm Report to Moderator

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Friday continued

Got to work early on...a couple of boiled eggs with soldiers for breakfast and then on the beams in the bedrooms two and three.  Now some guests love the gentle gnawing of my wee beasties that were in the wood while it was still a tree while I detest it.  I've more or less cleared my bedroom of the sound of munching but the guest bedroom has about three and the third bedroom I'm not sure.  So my mate down the wood yard suggested that the way to remove them was to paint on 'Gas' which I believe it's lamp oil and the bastards just don't like the smell and keel over.  I must admit when I was applying it with a paint brush I got the distinct high feeling that only youngster who sniff glue are partial too but I persevered, did the two rooms and I'm awaiting results.  

Decided that a trip to the Schoolmasters was on the cards.  I had my insurance for the Beast to sort out in Djebel, had to see Bekir and pose a few questions, catch up with the Schoolmaster and his antics and then on to Kardjali.  I needed potting compost to get some of the shrubs individually potted tomorrow and several things that I can't live without but Lidl hadn't got the flash fry bacon...my journey was in vain.  The rest of the trip was OK though and I blame my ex mother in law for sowing seeds in my head this afternoon in Billa of her favourite dirnk of rocket fuel and so the items were dutifully purchased.  Gin, sweet vermouth and tonic water.....Why rocket fuel you may ask?  It makes you go pretty quickly.

Home and shopping packed away.  Nothing for supper, I'm not hungry.  The smell is lingering around the house and I only hope my wee beasties succumb to the charms of it and ...DIE.  LN...I'll give you an update tomorrow when I tackle my bedroom, bathroom and landing.  LN
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Elsa Peters
July 19, 2014, 6:54pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 19th July

Was I a slow starter this morning.  My first eye opening was at five fifteen more or less and I vaguely heard that man from the mosque but then off I went again and it was just before eight for the second coming so to speak.  Accordingly it made the day go rather quickly but the best laid plans of mice and me went lady's anatomy skywards when I couldn't complete the task that I'd allotted to myself.  Firstly breakfast...three of my tomatoes were sitting in the kitchen gathering dust so they were wash, fried off and were delicious on toast and so to start the day.  Out on to the terrace and I heard Mr and Mrs Gouldjan in the field coming from their village so I headed for the fence and saw them bringing along a cow obviously going for a nuptial with the bull and she just didn't want to go.  A little friendly persuasion with a still helped a little but it was really hard work. Noisy old bird in the mulberry today and I noticed that it was a jay when it flew to the next mulberry in Star Mush's garden.  It really didn't want to come out from behind the leaves though.

The sunflower is about to flower and it looks absolutely lovely.  I've never seen one so dark orange before and with so many heads on it.  Those seeds will have to be saved for next year.  More sweat peas and my broad beans have really filled out with the rain and so have the mini cucumbers.  And no watering tonight...it's ready to start raining again.

The Beast was due its MOT today, I checked out the documents before I was to set off to the garage to have the brakes, oil and bits checked and I was short of one.  Each year I pay into the offices in Kardjali a road tax and I had them for the previous five years...and this years ...that I know I paid....zilch.  So let's take the filing system apart....and while I was at it I decided to throw out five years of accumulated rubbish that clogging up the system and start a new labelled system for the remains.  All achieved....one black sack of stuff for the bonfire tomorrow but as for that one document...still zilch.  Another look round the car, nothing,  Checked out Beauty, still nothing and then on to handbags and there it was, sitting in the bottom of my leather bag that I only take to town when I have paperwork to do.  By this time I'd abandoned the hope of getting the MOT done so it's been moved to Monday but at least I have a cleaned up filing system for the use of.  Played around with the Daily Mail sudoku and what a little bugger that was.  Three attempts on the computer and one on paper and still no joy but it was put to one side, I'd invited the Schoolmaster over for supper so now to the kitchen to get something organised.

Found a tin of corned beef, one of beans and made a corned beef hash which turned out OK.  It went down well with a couple of bottle of beer and we watched the thunder clouds forming and dissipating and at one point there was even a rainbow without rain.  He left just before nine to head home...I'm about to wash up and clean the kitchen for tomorrow.  Student tomorrow.... LN...I'm going to have to throw a sweater on...the temperature has dropped so much that I've had to shut the bedroom terrace door....LN



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Elsa Peters
July 19, 2014, 6:57pm Report to Moderator

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And a few more



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Elsa Peters
July 20, 2014, 5:14pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 20th July

Got a friend travelling down through Romania and the offer was on for me to go and see Dracula's Castle.  Now I'm not adverse to travelling but having seen it a few years ago when I took the children ski-ing to that neck of the woods I can't say that I was up for travelling so far for so little...so I sent him these comments....

'The Carpathian mountains contain the highest concentration of large carnivores in Europe, with estimates of over 6000 brown bears, 2500 wolves and some 1750 lynx living in the region. The Romanian Carpathians represent an exceptional tourist attraction.'  Steady as you go my friend, it's not only the Romanians you have to look out for by the look of it....haha...and his reply was...'Ooohh don't tell her.... I wonder if I could sue the Romanian government if she got eaten by a bear or wolves'.....I look forward to meeting them or him later this week....we'll see who makes it.

Over to my students today and she is suffering and feels that her glasses as prescribed by the local optician are doing her no good at all.  Now me...mine are plus two, plus two are easily catered for by the likes of the pound shops...hers cost a fortune and she's still not happy.  This week I might take her into Kardjali since she has a week from work to get them sorted.   Some times it's not what you say but the intimidation of you standing there.

Good day today...we had an interesting discussion about Nationality and where we really belong in the country we live in.  Even though some of it was getting list in translation we all enjoying it bearing in mind that we were in Bulgarian, Turkish and English and that's what Sunday's should be all about.  The outcome is that they are marrying me off to their grandfather who is over from Turkey for a holiday and then I'll be part of the family so no worries on any score.  I did say that the necessity of a weak heart and a big bank balance are the essential of any nuptial and he's deaf so he might not get all the clauses attached to the pre- agreement....It's a joke..believe me.

So the sewing machine ladies are having English lessons so that they understand colours and numbers attached to the garments they make and this funding is coming from Europe.  I have my concerns...a simple chart would suffice and the funding can go elsewhere....I can make the chart up in five minutes in power Point....do you think they would fund me.  Now my student's mum is not part of this culture and works in the factory shop supplying the necessary goodies to make their day go with a swing.  I'm in the process of teaching her English too so that she can speak to the machine ladies in English and watch their confused faces...so much for Euro grants.  Put the money into the schools and educate the teachers so that they speak English during the lessons and not get the students to get on with their workbooks.  Most have had twelve years plus of leaning English and not speak a word.  I had four years of learning French and am able still to communicate in French and my studies were fifty years ago....my teacher bounded in and spoke French from the moment he arrived until we moved on to the next lesson...that's taching for you...

Back home and got the lawn mower out again...I now have stripes.  It's hard work but il looks good when it's finished.  No supper for me...I'm still full from lunch and after my hard work a bottle of beer was the order of the day and that will suffice.  I've just showered and feel much better for it....MOT tomorrow as I said and meeting the Librarian in Djebel and we'll have a ladies shopping day and have two more quilts to buy....really good valued and cheap as chips....LN....I'm out to catch the last of the sun and enjoy the evening...LN



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Elsa Peters
July 21, 2014, 5:18pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 21st July

Seven start this morning, washing in and pegged out by eight fifteen, changed the insurance sticker on the Beast and over to the garage just before nine.  I arrived more or less at the same time as the garage owner's brother so I fitted in with the routing quite well...he got the coffee on and then put up the bonnet.  This morning's task was to give it the once over before I set off to get the MOT and everything was fine.  I joked with him that to lift the bonnet in the UK would be one hundred leva,  The Librarian phoned to say that she was running late so I asked if they would give the Beast it's birthday bath and it looked really good and ready for the boys in Kardjali and when she arrived she parked up and off we set.  Paid my dues so for an inspection and a spruce up...five leva.....

There was one humongous queue approaching Kardjali but fortunately I was taking the back road to the MOT garage.  My favourite man apparently is taking a break in Turkey so the boys set too...did the checks..issued the certificate and new sticker on the windscreen and I was out of the garage in about ten minutes.  Cost for the service..thirty five leva and then on to find a parking space which was really difficult to do.  Kardjali was heaving and not sure if it's because there are lots of people over from Turkey for the holiday or visitors from Greece now that the border is open.  I managed to find a park at the end of town that we wanted to be in and stopped for a coffee, down to the hardware shop and picked up some rather nice tea/coffee mugs and a jam pot to match, over to the quilt shop and one for me and the Schoolmaster and the Librarian picked one up as well.  i think the little lady thought that all her byrams had come together.  Drove back to the other end of town and realised that the traffic jam was because they had got part of the road up on the main Kardjali island and it was chaos.  I had to park in Kaufland car park to go to Billa but they hadn't any fillet steak so it was a wasted effort.  Back to the car, stopped off at Lidl for the bacon they didn't have the other day and then home via the Schoolmasters to drop off his quilt.

Back to the garage, the Librarian retrieved her vehicle and I was home for about four this afternoon....Pretty full day but we lunched in town so no food for me tonight.  Guests tomorrow about lunchtime and not sure if the guest room is required or not but everything ready in case it is.  I've just finished watering the garden, Semile has finished baling the hay from the opposite field with little Jaylan helping him and he's such a happy boy.  He's the young one that can be seen driving the tractor and I got such a big wave from him.  It's now being moved to storage by Remsie's husband with the donkey and trailer...one load gone and one to go.

Time for a shower.  I just need to freshen up before I settle down for the night with the book.  It's been a good day today and I always feel happier when the cars are done and finished for another year.  A lovely calm evening....LN



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Elsa Peters
July 22, 2014, 9:51pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 23rd July

I'm so late posting I think I've missed the day.....

Out to the garage this morning and they sorted out the problem with Beauty...it was a loose connection between the battery and one of the terminals.  Back home in time to receive my guests and we had a really quiet lunch while their washing dried on the line....in this house you welcome guests and show them where the washing machine is...two weeks in Europe and they're ready to use it.

Over to the Schoolmasters this evening since he is a mutual friend and then down to the Macaza restaurant where we had a lovely meal with another couple of Danish colleagues.  Sorry it's so quick tonight....my fairy godmother said midnight but I missed the deadline.....and it's heading for one already and no glass slipper to boot...so no Prince Charming.....charming...LN...tomorrow Kardjali....LN



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Elsa Peters
July 24, 2014, 8:01pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 24th July

Now before I say anything else I have apologies to make.  I made it upstairs to my PC last night after I'd had a hard day in the garden, looking after guests and fell asleep as I was trying to type it up and it had nothing to do with the local beer we were consuming....so tonight ...here we go and let's hope that I'll get to the end....

I still have guests and we've had a brilliant few days with lots of laughs and the Jaffa cake doggy tongue party piece was very forthcoming.  To get the second biscuit you have to eat the first one in the correct order and other guests to this establishment will understand this procedure especially Princess...xx  Remsie arrived this morning and she told me that she is off to Turkey for a family wedding next week and that her son had been over from Belgium but had not gone back.  

This morning's mist burnt away and we've had a brilliant day weather wise...apart from the couple of spots that fell while we were going from the car to the supermarket this afternoon but really nothing to write home about.  This morning we were over to the school masters to walk the dogs and we set off with good intentions but the little one started suffering greatly with the heat so we turned round and walked back down the hill.  On the way up we met a woman filling up her watering can at one of the springs and she insisted on giving me a ....cucumber...I tried to explain that I am growing these things and don't even like them but she insisted so home it came.  

We stopped off and got fresh bread on our way home and also some white cheese bread from the local banichka shop and lunch was pretty late with the said banichkas, cold sausages and salad.  We sat out for this afternoon just watching the birds and the clouds go by and Gouldjan arrived at about six and we chewed over the fat, she spoke about helping out a Moroccan lady with an immigration request using French and off she went at about seven thirty and in we came to get cold chicken and bits for supper....it's been very relaxed today and my guests are enjoying the peace and quiet of the place.  Now down to keep them company again....LN...the men asked to be remembered to you...they're working their little socks off at the schoolmasters and I thing their rubber shoes are wearing a bit thin...Catch you later with a full update...LN



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Elsa Peters
July 25, 2014, 8:12pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 25th July

Out into the garden this morning and watered the things that didn't catch the full force of the rain over night and the morning dew.  I also noticed that there were several tobacco plants that had decided to take root in the lawn so I dug them up and have given them as second lease of life in various flower beds around the garden.  I will be lawnmower day again tomorrow  since the grass has shot up because of the rain and they would have been floored,

Breakfast for my guests was a fry up and we sat around until eleven thirty chewing over the cud and at twelve we left for Kardjali.  The were supposedly leaving me tomorrow going back to the UK on the route that they took down here until I came up with the suggestion yesterday that they go home via Greece, Italy and Switzerland and the idea was adopted and they've booked the ferry for eleven tomorrow night.  Journey from here to the port is about six hours and today we've been planning likely stops along the way and it sounds like fun.  I was invited to join them for the trip back but what on earth do I want to go to the UK for.....it would be a quick turnaround and back here....I;ve got things like lawns to sort out.

So into Kardjali for a few things, over to the leva shop for some reasonably priced cotton trousers, I managed to find some sherry copas for when my guests have gone and I'm home alone with my sherry and port bottles, and then back to Djebel for a couple of loaves of bread and beer for them to take with them on their travels.  We sat out this afternoon. I got supper of chicken wings with potatoes and onions, bottled fruit and cream for pudding and now they are in bed getting in a good night's sleep and I'm about to hit the sack.  The weather has been a bit 'iffy' today.  Hot at times and quite a breeze blowing at others buy it's a calm night tonight.  As I said...all quiet on the western front...LN....I'll be all on my own tomorrow...LN
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Elsa Peters
July 26, 2014, 4:05pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 26th July

Up at six thirty and caught the beautiful red sun from the bottom terrace...it's really nice to wake up to.  There's not a lot of heat in it when it pops up and gives the world a lovely rosy glow and the windows in the little house reflect it...nice feeling.  My guests were up and showered by seven thirty and were working up to a day in the car heading for Italy.  Breakfast was poached eggs on toast and finished off with buttered fruit load.  They should be all right until lunchtime.  They are off over the border into Greece, north of Thessoliniki and over to Igoumenitsa and over to Brindisi for the ferry at eleven tonight.  Fourteen hour crossing and tomorrow...Italia and looking at the photos of the port and surroundings it really looks like it's worth going to.  I waved them goodbye and safe journey at eleven, stripped the beds, towels into the washing machine and pegged out for just before twelve.  Tidied round a bit and am now back to normal after playing all the back issues of Daily Mail sudoku and having an afternoon nap.  

My excuse for a lawn has taken off again and I'm needing to be out there with the lawnmower especially on the top half of the garden and tomorrow looks like it might be the day to do it.  I'm going to cancel my lesson tomorrow...I need a little space and Monday looks full on with picking up Gouldjan at eight thirty to take a load of clothes into school for the poorer families of Djebel. a visit to the photo printing shop, the curtain fabric shop to get the material for recovering my new sofa and chairs and I might even invest in a set of outside chairs that I've seen in Kardjali for the lounge terrace.  I'll think about it until Monday and make my decision then.  

Garden watered and tomorrow is also going to be a day for potting up 'bits' that are around and taking new cuttings of the ones that I might lose if the weather is bad this winter...I'd like backups just in case.  So it's going to be a potter day. It's been very hot today and at seven my time, there doesn't seem to be a lot of air around....a very still evening.  I did catch Semile's son racing the sheep back home despite the heat, stripped off to the waste and running as hard as you like...and he's eleven.  They all have their jobs to do here.  

Supper is going to be what I can find.  There's not much enthusiasm in the camp for cooking and eating a big meal.  LN.....it's time for a 'sup' on the terrace....LN



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Elsa Peters
July 26, 2014, 5:33pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday continued

My supper arrived courtesy of Haciba and she sat and we had a little chat.  She's a little bit worried...her husband has been released from hospital after a major operation and she is trying to cope...They are both old and there is not a lot of medical support for them....my thoughts are with them.  I asked if I could help but I wouldn't know where to start.  She delivered six pancakes and I think it's the beginning of the celebrations for the end of Ramadam.....palechinka to give them the correct title and I do believe I have some icecream to have with them...sorry guests...you missed a treat.

So as the sun came up...now it goes down...LN



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