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Elsa Peters
January 16, 2015, 5:18pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 16th January

Four o'clock start and it was like daylight outside and I caught the moon....real narrow crescent and I half expected a little boy with a fishing rod to be hanging off it.....Back to bed and read for a while and managed to get another hour or so coming to at round about seven.  Very cold this morning and despite the sun I don't think it's got above zero all day but I did manage to get a load of washing done and it's now airing in the upstairs bathroom.

Toast for breakfast and ran the hoover and mop round the upstairs so the house is clean.  It almost felt like spring cleaning but it's too early and I'm thinking that the snow is going to come back and bite us in the bottom again.  Popped over to my Avatar's house and gave her a packet of the mince meat that I bought in Lidl yesterday and came back with a bowl of home made yogurt.  It's very much swings and roundabouts but I made her laugh when I popped my head out of her door and checked for anyone spying on the comings and goings between the Local and the English.  Put two of the packs in the freezer as a back up.

It's been a snooker afternoon but what a rubbish game and it's still going on.  I put it on because I thought that O'Sullivan was playing but I got it wrong.  Good fire going and it needs it tonight.  I've got my PJ's on early, supper was cold chicken and mayo and I'll have to go some to stay awake to catch all of the snooker tonight.  I think I might even make it into Kardjali tomorrow....I need another few bags of coal.   LN



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Elsa Peters
January 17, 2015, 4:23pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 17th January

So another bitterly cold day and the ice has still not melted in the yard despite the sun.  Nothing for it....I stayed home alone.  Rescued the fire at the crack of and warmed the place up.  It hadn't lost it's overnight temperature but it needed a boost once I opened the curtains at sevenish this morning.  The sky was streaked with red pre sunrise but there were clouds hanging over the mountains.  It was almost eight when I notice the sun emerging, it stayed for a while and then went behind the clouds.  This morning it just looked huge and not sure of the reason why.

Used up the old leeks and the remains of the chicken and made a vegetable soup.  This is about to get put into the oven and I've got a few sheets of flaky pastry and we'll see what that does.  It was ready bought, I've not used it before but I thought I'd give it a shot.  Four scrambled eggs on toast for breakfast.  I've got so many that I need to think about using them up.  Had three shots at the Daily Mail five star sudoku but in the end I got there and my average is still under ten minutes so maintaining my record.  Showered and shampooed and got the wool and five double ended needles out and started the first of a pair of socks.  I find beginning knitting with five is always difficult but gets easier as it gets longer.  Watched the snooker this afternoon and my O'Sullivan was well and truly beaten....but it means that I don't have to watch any more....I'm not that interested in who wins.

Down to the kitchen, pie going in and I might be ready for it at about seven thirty.....Temperature has really dropped tonight...time for tending to fires...LN



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Elsa Peters
January 18, 2015, 5:14pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 18th January

Seven ten wake up and noticed the pre-dawn.  Coffee, book, opened the curtains from the bedroom via the lounge to the outside and it was really good.  As you can see, a few good shots but I had to change my position to get the best of it.

No breakfast for me...I was cooking baked apples with a hint of cinnamon with honey, brown sugar, raisins, sultanas and butter to take to my student's hous.  They feed me so I thought it would be a little offering and I learnt a new phrase.  'May your hand always be good to cook special gifts for us'.  They produced a couple of pancakes that they'd had for breakfast and I suggested that we had them with a sprinkling of sugar and lemon juice.  Now the faces changed....it wasn't something that was normal for them but I made one, I split in into several pieces and told them they had to try it....and it was well received.  I think they expected sweet but it's much better for them than pancakes with the jam and chocolate that they normally have...success.

We had chicken and potatoes for lunch and I'd bought yogurt to have with the baked apples and that went down exceedingly well.  No parents today...they were visiting a relative who had undergone an operation so it was me and the girls.  I stayed until four today...the older sister went off to visit a young relative and I was on my way.

Hope and the fire was lit....which took a while.  I couldn't get the log to burn but it's fine now.  I warmed up three sections of the chicken and veg pie and only two portions found itself in the freezer but I did make Bisto gravy to top it all off tonight.  Watching the snooker and we're on an evening session break and Coast to Coast is on in the background.  Two beers down and only one left to work through...LN....I'm about to start the snooker again and search for another bottle or two...LN



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Elsa Peters
January 19, 2015, 6:09pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 19th January

Forgot to mention that when I got back from my student yesterday there was a parcel hanging on my door knob and last night had a conversation with Gouldjan on Skype and her mother had left my present from Turkey.  I didn't open it yesterday but tore the wrapping off this morning and it is a table cloth and now it adorns the kitchen.  Almost eight when I woke up this morning and felt better for an uninterrupted sleep.  I hadn't gone to bed until eleven and perhaps that's the secret but it's a hard job staying awake some nights.

Coffee, no fire to be lit since I was heading into Djebel this morning and it wasn't as cold as it has been for the last couple of weeks or so.  Washed up the dishes from last night and cleaned the kitchen, up on the computer and then dressed for the big city.  Out in the Beast again...it's going much better now that I give it some exercise and I'd already loaded the empty bottles intending to lob them in the first container when I hit Djebel.  Task completed and walked to Gouldjan's school to thank her for the present and to give her and her mother's Christmas presents although somewhat late.  The rest of the girls in the office were apparently amazed that I wrap all presents individually but when it's only a bar of soap, it gives it a special appeal.  So my student's mum was working hard so I didn't stop for long, I caught up with the mother from my favourite restaurant that I hadn't seen for a while, did a quick tour of the market, into the supermarket for bread and a bun loaf and home for just before one.  

Found a tin of salmon that I had bought before Christmas and decided on sandwiches for lunch but it didn't measure up to John West's standard and I shan't be buying it again.  Got the wood in, read for most of the afternoon, lit the fire at four and the temperature seems to have dropped and there was a little snow tonight mixed in with the rain but nothing seems to have stuck.  I was really surprised that there was no rainbow...the sky looked as if there should have been.  Pork slices cooking tonight and I think there will be a few chippies with it and maybe an egg.  I'm feeling very tired tonight...it must be the fresh air today and am going to have trouble staying awake I think....better get my knitting out.  

So down to take care of supper, a little mastica I think to help it down and I think it's time to throw another log on.  LN...a woman's work is never done...well done but never finished...LN



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Elsa Peters
January 20, 2015, 5:12pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 20th January

Six thirty start and the sunrise was spectacular but different.  The sun then made it's way behind the clouds and it didn't really show its face until this afternoon.  Two loads completed.  Stripped my bed down and did the bottom sheet, duvet cover and pillowcases and they were ready to be brought in at four and were hung on the banister in the sun to air so that they could be put back on.  Had a bit of an issue with the petchka pipes this morning.  They were leaking smoke into the room so I transferred the burning logs from the biggie to the little one in the kitchen and cooled down the pipes from the biggie.  Got a rather strong looking log and bashed the pipes home and it seems to have fixed it. It could also have something to do with the direction the wind was blowing and boy, was there a wind...the washing was dried in quicksticks.

Not much to the rest of the day.  I had two birthday cards to make and have to get them in the post so it might mean a trip into Djebel in the morning.  Darts finished, snooker finished and now we have indoor bowls that doesn't seem to have the same appeal so this afternoon I found out a series of House Doctor and watched three episodes.  I sort of associate with him...he's an odd ball too.  Opened a packed of salted almonds while I was watching the videos and now I can't say that there is an immediate need to rush to the kitchen and find something to eat.  It could almost be a fast day since it's fast approaching bedtime for me.  A couple of beers might just hit the spot tonight....it doesn't hurt once in a while to go without food.  So nothing to do, looking forward to bed tonight...and the bedding has that smell when it's been dried outside...and it is January.  So LN.....back to Dr House....LN



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Elsa Peters
January 21, 2015, 4:12pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 21st January

Morning wake up at six twenty and guessed it on the button...Coffee and back to bed with the book and you know the routine by now.  Checked out emails and FB and breakfast called...baked beans on toast and did the usual chores around the house, washing up, emptying the ash cans and then got lost for things to do.

Went into Djebel at eleven to post the birthday cards and over to my student's mum for a chat.  I'd sent her a link to a UK website and she ordered and it was despatched and delivered with three days and I'm still waiting for mine.  Her website,,,House of Fraser...what a fantastic company...via DHL to be recommended.

Home for one thirty and received a phone call to say that my UPS is on its way.  I explained where my house was and true to form he arrived at four thirty with said package.  It's a shame that the rest of the delivery couldn't have gone so smoothly.

So opened it up and some of the things I was expecting were there but some weren't.  The contents have been washed and will be ready for delivery tomorrow and I think I shall have some happy bunnies'.  As for the rest of the contents...not sure but well...you can't get everything you want.

Supper wa shepherd's pie with the residue of this morning's beans and it went down well.  The intention was to freeze on of the portions,,, it didn't happen.  Fire going as of two thirty this afternoon and everything toasty,  I'm about to go down and get my book out in front of the fire...chilled day.  LN....I'm delivering tomorrow if it's dry otherwise Friday...LN....a little beer on the go me thinks...LN



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Elsa Peters
January 22, 2015, 5:08pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 22nd January

Disturbed sleep.  Because it's gone from minus to plus on the thermometer my winter duvet was just so overkill for last night and I woke up sweating my little socks of...or rather my Bulgarian knitted socks off.  So at four I was cooling off and reading and decided that I might get a few more zzz's in and eventually woke up at eight this morning.  Result.   The morning was shrouded in mist/fog and the sun sort of came up and went and the fog was in and out all day.

Looked at some of the ski stuff that I'd washed last night and thought that it needed another rinse and spin.  Some of the washing powder had lingered but again another result.  The two biggies were ok but the junior one, my two piece and the other ski jacket had to be put through the machine again.  I hung them out on the line in the hope that the sun would do its stuff but tonight they are in the upstairs bathroom and will be cooked by the morning.  Breakfast was late.  Two boiled eggs with toast and I put another six in and hard boiled them for snacks should I not feel in the mood for cooking.  It's gone almost salad weather....

Read for a lot of the afternoon on the sofa with the door open.  Lit the fire at five and now it's for comfort....not really needed tonight but it might be a little later.  So tomorrow I'm going to take the ski stuff to my student's mum's shop, some material that she might want to make some cushions out of and some paper for printing labels.  When I wanted some I could only buy a box and I think they'll be there when I'm not at the rate that I'm using them, so a donation will not leave me short.

Time for thinking about supper....can't say that I'm really ravishing so I'm going to get my head in the freezer and see what I can come up with.  Kardjali tomorrow if the weather is good.  Otherwise it's a day of.....what I want it to be.  LN



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Elsa Peters
January 23, 2015, 4:45pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 23rd January

Dull cloudy start and at seven thirty...it was OK by me.  It wasn't raining but low cloud and misty fog and at eight thirty I received a phone call from the Librarian to say that she'd prefer to hole herself up in the house today with a fire and comfort food.  I agreed but my agenda said deliver ski gear to my student's mum, firstly get out the pechka pipes to identify why I had smoke in my downstairs wet room, and secondly solve it.

Removed said pipes and cleaned them out, cleaned out petchka, replaced said pipes, cleaned tiles in the bathroom that were smoke tainted and lit petchka and there was smoke everywhere.  Bashed said pipes with a square sized log and smoke seeked to reduce somewhat and when outside to check and there was smoke pouring out of said chimney.  Eventually the heat warmed the chimney and I think it was an accumulation of the chimney not being warm enough, wind in the wrong direction and eventually all sorted and no further problems today.  It always seems to happen...whenever I run one of those things that supposedly clears the chimney...it doesn't....back to the drawing board Cecil.

Delivered the ski gear along with printer labels and took along the samples of material for my student's cushion.  Success...I have four cushions to make tomorrow.  One of the jackets was a success and the father left the shop wearing one and the others are all in ones so no try outs at the moment.

Picked up Gouldjan and gave her a lift home to save her catching the bus.  Came back fro Djebel with mandarins, oranges, apples and cooking apples so that I can start my healthy diet.  Late lunch of spicy sausage fried off with onions, orange juice, a hit of chili flakes and honey and the intention was to serve it with fresh crusty bread but I mad the mistake of serving it on to a cold plate.  I ended up with chili, onion toffee...an acquired taste but not bad.

Watching Doctor House this evening....three episodes down and they all seem to have run in to each other and there's no letting go.  I might just venture into Kardjali tomorrow if the weather is good alternatively I could make the cushion covers that I've just volunteered to do....Let's see what tomorrow brings.  There are a few flashes of lightening now a claps of thunder...I think I am going to say goodnight to my outside world....LN




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Elsa Peters
January 24, 2015, 10:52pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 25th January

Well it's been one hell of a day with the focus being on pipes that are belching smoke.  I woke up and lit the fire and ended up removing the pipes from my petchka and substituting one of them that was before the one that went into the flue,  And as it happened...no improvement.  So I decided to get the fire going in the kitchen so that I warmed up the chimney...so no effect....and had my arm up the exit pipe and I felt like a vet would during an animal impregnation.....but to no avail...the bathroom still had smoke pouring out of the bottom vent.  

So tomorrow I am buying a length of the pipe used to screen electric pipes and I'm going to shove it up the flu and attach the hoover to the end of it..desperate times call for desperate measures.  Other than calling for Bekir to go up to the roof I have no option but I really want to sort it myself.

As for the rest of the day...I did several rows of knitting, read my book, got in the wood and kept two fires going...seems enough for one day...LN  ...I'm off to lick my wounds....



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Elsa Peters
January 25, 2015, 5:48pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 25th January

No student today....had to sort out my chimney and I tried, believe me I tried but to no avail.  I found an extra length of the cable wrapping plastic pipe and I managed to get it up the chimney from the bathroom to about two meters.  Some of the crap came down but obviously not enough to make a huge difference so I decided to attach a knife to the pipe with fine wire and this got some more down but again...not enough and drastic measures will be taken tomorrow.  I've badly scratched my hand getting the knife and pipe to go round the bend so I'm swathed with Sudocrem and I'm hoping it will do what it does best...heal and stave off infection.

I gave in at one thirty having spent the morning at it, put my tools away, lit the fire to see if warming up the chimney might cause more to dislodge but I've had the bathroom window open all day to clear out the smoke.  I think I'll just put on an extra sweater and save the lungs.  Settled in to watch some more of Doctor House this afternoon and it really is addictive.  I think I watched about six episodes until the need to eat grabbed me so down to the kitchen and tonight it's chicken wings on a bed of potatoes and onions and they should be ready in about half an hour.  Sitting at my desk in the dusk and notice Harold my Hare who has been absent for quite some time come leaping up to my veg patch.  Now the only things growing are broad beans, last years beetroot and weeds so I'm not sure what took his interest but as I tried to get out on to my bedroom balcony with the zoom he legged it back down the garden but stopped just before the walnut tree.  I tried to zoom in but it wouldn't hold focus so I went back to my trusty Sony and you might just be able to see the 'blob'.  At that he took off again and I'm amazed that he's still around with all the dogs that we have guarding sheep.  

So tomorrow I have Bekir to pick up at ten at the restaurant in his village.  I succumbed, phoned him and said that I had a small problem and it will be for him,  I want to get the chimney sorted before the bad weather comes back.  At the moment I can do without the fire...towards the middle of next week we are supposed to be down to minus temperatures yet again....so the fire will be essential.  Supper is ready, I can smell it and so I'm off downstairs....LN....so I'll have a man on my roof again tomorrow...LN



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