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Elsa Peters
July 17, 2015, 6:22pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 17th July

Five thirty start and out washed and dressed for the day by six.  I got the strimmer out and by seven thirty I had done down the lane on the other side of the little garden wall so that my painter could carry on regardless but it all went a little pear shaped.  I went in a got buttered fresh chunky bread on a plate and a jar of really thick apricot jam and was heading outside when I saw my painter and he made me jump...you know how it happens sometimes...your brain is somewhere else and it comes as a surprise. He asked me to put my plate down and gave me the customary greeting as a mark of respect for one of the oldies.  Your hand is kissed and pressed to the forehead and I was so touched and I thank him for his greeting.  Today he couldn't work...the same ones that had criticised him for yesterday had obviously got through to him and had bowed to pressure and so he should.  There is no urgency with the railings...we agreed he would do them when he wanted and also agreed that two coats would be better than one so I'll leave the arrangements in his capable hands.

I had a guest around lunchtime who is visiting her parents.  Apparently her parents had told her that there was an English person in the village and she made a point of finding me out.  Between broken English, Turkish and Bulgarian we spoke for about half an hour with the promise that she would come again before she went back on Sunday.   Lots of garden tidying , bushes at the bottom of the garden trimmed and some heaps of stones moved down from the workshop terrace down to the bottom of the garden and I came in when the temperature really soared.

I phoned the lawn mower shop to check where my parcel was and was told to phone back after two when there would be an English speaker.  Again I was to phone back at four when he was guaranteed to be there and he was.  I reordered the part and took every number that I could find on the lawn mower, the exact part was identified and it will be couriered on Monday and delivered on Tuesday....result.  The Librarian arrived around two thirty and I'd got beetroot from the garden and was in the process of boiling it when she arrived.  We had coffee, walked the garden and she left with ready cooked beetroot and her ding-dong Avon that I'd ordered for her.  We are swimming on Monday if the weather holds and will have an early start before the lads turn up for their bombing practice.  

Watered the garden, didn't manage to get a final strimming in tonight but there is always tomorrow.  Only a trip to Djebel on the agenda for tomorrow....I want to stock up on local tonic water and fruit juices that are on offer and I also have an order from the Librarian for some of the same.

Nice sunrise and sunset tonight...only captured the fall....far too busy in the garden this morning....LN.....very mellow day...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 18, 2015, 7:39pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 18th July

Well it's been a very chilled day with lots of activity and not a lot of capturing on camera..  I sat out this morning and watched the sun come up and I was too comfortable to go get the camera to capture it...and that's been the story for the rest of the day.

My painter arrived at seven thirty this morning and made me jump since I hadn't heard him...He set to work immediately and he realised that he had need of a special brush to get underneath the railings and his word for it was a brush known as 'bird's beak' and I was unsure what he wanted but it was a paintbrush with a hinged bit in the middle that you can angle to do in the crevices.  My painter noticed that my tyre was without air at the bottom so I pumped it up and straight to the garage and the problem was some metal embedded in the tyre.  That was another five leva spent....

Stopped off at the shop and bought a chicken and several cartons of juice and some of them are for the Librarian.  They were on offer at the local supermarket and the local bottle of tonic to go with it.  I watched the Davies cup and the doubles match...and then it was time to get the chicken cooked.

Really hot today so not much activity this afternoon and tonight is pretty much the same....LN...there will be photos tomorrow....
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Elsa Peters
July 19, 2015, 6:20pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 19th July

Five thirty start and up and at it.  Out with the hose and watch the sun come up and the bonfire was still going so topped it up and got quite a good head of smoke.  Out with the strimmer and was surprised by my painter at seven fifteen who brought me round potatoes, carrots, onions, runner beans, cucumber, a small marrow and two bunches of herbs.  He proudly told me that there were no chemicals at all and having cooked some of the carrots, beans and potatoes for supper tonight....they were delicious.

So off he went on his bicycle delivering to other parts of the village but he was back just before eight and set to immediately.  It was a scorcher today but I helped him out by trimming back the shrubs that were covering part of the railing but I asked him to be careful with the sunflowers but there was really no need...he's just so caring.  At ten thirty I asked him if I could get him anything to drink....some juice and I was surprised when he said yes and we sat on the terrace and his only comment was that it was very sweet.  He suggested I got a juicer and made my own and it's a reminder to me that I have one and what the heck am I buying juice for.  As he was tidying up I noticed that one of his trouser legs was covered in paint and he explained that he'd tripped over and it had gone all over his leg and he asked if he could take what was left in the bottle of paint remover to get it off his leg.  So tomorrow he's back and he said that he thought he would finish tomorrow and I reminded him that there were the railings round the balconies to do as well and he said that he'd forgotten about them.....and off he set at ten minutes to twelve having done his half day with the remover strapped to his bicycle.

I'd had a good morning in the garden carrying on tidying from the building work and sorting the wood into piles for processing either on the bonfire or to keep for winter.  I filled up a couple of barrow loads of rubble from by the stone heap and generally cleared it ready to think about putting down some grass seed.  There are a few wild plum to dig up where they've spread onto the paths and down the wall to the bottom of the garden,  I want to try and keep that area clear so that there is a clear path along the wall.  It was all go and I came in dripping with perspiration, tried to get on the internet and the providers were having problems so played a few games of Freecell to cool down and then decided to shut up shop and get my head down for a while and it was four thirty when I surfaced.  I strimmed the middle of the grass and got rid of the plantain heads that bash against your legs when you walk the garden....finished for five thirty, showered and washed my hair and sat out in a bath tower on the terrace combing my hair out and enjoying the silence.  I stayed out until a couple of little flies forced me in and set to cooking some potatoes, carrots and beans for supper to have with the cold chicken from yesterday.  

So tools put away, garden watered, nine ten my time and I'm wondering where the day has gone....fortunately tonight there is a breeze picking up so it could be a comfortable night....LN.....I'm over to my virtuous couch...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 20, 2015, 5:23pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 20th July

Well missed the sunrise but I lay and watched the rosy glow from my bed as it came over the hill.  It had been a bit of a strange night...having slept for three hours yesterday I wasn't surprised by my lack of interest in getting some zzz's in but by one I'd had enough so got the DS machine out and played for a while until I reached that hypnotic state....It struck me last night that with the door open onto my bedroom terrace and listening to the night birds and the screech owl that seems to settle in my tree...it's like sleeping outdoors with all of the benefits....most flying things kept out and just the sounds of the night.....

Full on this morning....I was waiting for my painter to arrive to see if he needed anything from Djebel before I took off on a jolly and sat on the terrace repairing a linen top that I'd bought in Mania for stotinki but the pocket was coming adrift.....all repaired, dipped in water and hung out on the line so remove the creases but as I said it's linen so it doesn't really matter.  When my guy arrived he asked me if I was going into Djebel and I said yes if we needed anything so he wrote me a list of sunflower seeds for nibbling on and a bottle of Ariana since the mobile shop didn't have any.  Being committed now to a trip I asked him how much sandpaper we'd got left and I put another four meters on the list.  I went on to Messenger and left a message for the Librarian that I would be there for ten and to warm me up a sunbed.  Shopping done, sunning gear gather and as it happened there was no one in the pool at all so we had the pick of the beds and swimming by ten thirty and it was bliss until the bombers arrived at about twelve thirty and a group of young girls at one.  Now the girls were really girlie and the boys were like bees round a honey pot.  Upside was they congregated down the shallow end so the rest was free of the blighters.  The Librarian's neighbour joined us for lunch and back in the pool for a final swim and we left at three and I was home for three forty five more or less and only just managed to get back into the village before the asphalt machine started doing it's stuff at full road width....nothing in and nothing out.  Washing done and out for four fifteen and back in dried and aired for seven and it's a beautiful evening.  There's a pair of blackbirds scurrying across the law and dipping to feed and several birds on the roof with nesting or feeding requirements...It's my roof...off with you...

So as the sun goes down I'm looking a little like the evening sky despite lashings of sun cream...but as I say...I should be brown tomorrow and there's that lovely afterglow of a day in the sun...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 21, 2015, 7:23pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 21st July

What a full on day.....Lovely morning and I apolgise for taking more photos of the rising of the sun but hey...I'm on a par with the Egyptians and almost worship it.  Bed stripped, machine loaded, coffee brewing and I sat outside for a good half an hour just doing nothing but enjoying my morning.  There were a couple of golden oriels doing there stuff, the martins were aerial bombing and there was a sparrow that seemed determined to get into the martin's nest but he was also give a short sharp message that it was a no fly area.  My painter arrived and started work and we were trying to invent something to paint the underside of the railings since the gap is not uniform...hand made railings and all that.  The first one that he suggested patented didn't really get off the drawing board and failed at the first hurdle but there will be more prototypes tomorrow....

Gouldjan arrived at nine fifteen and had missed the bus and the milk wagons and wanted a lift into Rogosche which is the nearest pickup point for the through buses to Kardjali.  I noticed that I'd got text message from the couriers that were delivering my but for the lawnmower but since the road was subject to closure because of the asphalt machine I asked her to phone and have the part delivered to her school.  So she phoned me at eleven to say that it had arrived and everything in the garden seemed loverly.  I pottered for a while, my painter had finished what he set out to do and the next thing I knew he was bringing out the bicycle for the little house and pumping up the tyres.  He lowered the saddle and opened up the gate and I cycled down to the turnaround at the bottom of the village and back again much to the amusement of my Avatar.  The fear of the roaming dogs stops me going out further but I might just give it a try.  Gouldjan's father just missed the performance but came in the garden to talk to the painter and was amazed how much garden I have.  From the road my garden looks nothing....but once inside it's like Mary Poppins'  bag...goes on forever.

I set to with the table for the terrace that will also serve as a leg rest to one of the chairs on the terrace and blow me down there is a courier at the gate with another parcel.  I accepted it, paid the dues and opened it up and it was the part that I appear to have ordered twice and it was being delivered by two different companies.  Any road up...I fitted it so I am now a lawnmower engineer and fired it up and it went so I knocked off half of the lawn but in the heat of the day maybe not a sensible thing to do so came inside and got my head down for an hour or so.

Table complete, Gouldjan came round and delivered the second parcel and we tried to work it out but couldn't.  I can only think that the original order placed by the man at Practice was delivered by the first courier to Gouldjan and my follow-up telephone call created a subsequent order but not to worry...it's in reserve.  Took Gouldjan home, watered the garden, final nails in the table and put on wood preservative and another coat will be applied in the morning.  All tools and bike away and supper was anything I could find to throw into the frying pan and it worked out well.  A little beer to wash it down and nothing on the agenda tomorrow.  The balcony rails will be completed tomorrow and then I need to find sunshine superman something else to do....can't let him go that easily.

LN.....I'm shutting up shop for the night after a very successful day...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 22, 2015, 6:32pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 22nd July

Awake with the birds but this time watched the glow of the morning...but then had to go out and capture it.  Watered the garden and I feel so sorry for the poor flowers and shrubs....they're getting burnt to buggery despite two watering sessions a day...I think I'll have to leave the hose on trickle all night to see if it seeps into the ground.

Sat out with a coffee and started to hand sew the two pieces of the extra large cushion that I've doctored to make one that matches the other three.  I was stitching away and suddenly heard a noise that didn't fit in with the surroundings and it was my painter and it was only seven thirty.  He was keen to show me the rollers he'd made and I joked that it looked like his would be patented and not mine.  He'd made those yesterday afternoon to solve the problem of painting the bottom of the bottom rail....inventive bloke.

I looked at my outside sink area and realised that it was time for a makeover.  It's never made it to any 'to do' list but out with the plastic window from the winter snow shield and it was looking better already, out with the dark brown wood stain and I did the screen, the wood underneath the door mat that stops the mat getting wet and the shelving unit that supports the outside sink.  My Avatar's ladder came into play for painting the metal on the balcony but then there was a problem on his getting down.  He thought it was an intrusion going through my bedroom but I put his mind at rest...were not as precious about it as the local ladies.

He left at twelve and went to say goodbye to his brother who was working in Denmark and flying out the next day.  I think he's going to miss him...his father had died earlier in the year and they have been working on the family house.  So he said his farewells, came and told me and then on his bike and home but asking me if there was anything I wanted from his garden tomorrow.  The are such kind souls.  Tools away, door closed and outside key removed and I had ten minutes on the PC and then head down for a couple of hours....it is really that hot.  Tools out again and painted the outside arm chair with the same wood preservative and I had a memory of it being the first chair that I'd made when I got here......the rest will be done on Friday...tomorrow it's off to Kardjali for a day in town.  Planted out a spirea in the little house garden and nearly went base over apex on a root that was just a tad over the ground height so out if came...but it was bigger that I thought it was initially but that's the last time I'll trip over that one.

Lovely sunset as per normal, the moon's up already.  I've just watched Eggheads and the prize money roles over for another day....who will beat them?  The screech owl that just started up so it's almost time for me to take to my bed....LN.....it's been another busy old day...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 23, 2015, 7:50pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 23rd July

Five thirty start, garden watered, sat for a coffee for a while and then burst into action.  I trimmed a jasmine that had gone wild on the little house terrace with my new Bosch trimmer that appears to only take the light stuff so maybe I need a proper hedge trimmer...it's on the list.  I noticed that a new white fuschia cutting was in need of finding a home of its own so took a flower pot and poked at the soil with a potting shovel and a frog or toad (I know not which) jumped to the top of the pot and frightened the life out of me.  Now I'm not good with country things and that goes from the big to the little but I had to go and get the camera.  Last seen on the terrace and obviously has a new home where it hopes it won't be disturbed.  I sat out in the sun for a while abandoning all hopes of repotting the  fuschia and attacked the two parts of the bench seat to make them into one again and looked up and there was my painter explaining that one of the other people from the village wanted him for a day of cement workings but he'd told him that he had to ask me first.  I immediately agreed that he could work when and where he wanted....I only have another couple of days or so unless I really start to look for other work for him and there is really lots to do.  So off he went with a clear conscience and  I dragged the second long bench out from the kitchen window terrace and got to work with the wood preservative wanting to finish it by the time the Librarian arrived which I did.  Showered, shampooed, lipstick on and off we set taking two cars with the intention of leaving hers in the garage and we'd take mine to Kardjali.  So the best laid plans...the road asphalt machine was taking up all the carriage way and when asked how long the response was that when they hit a wide patch we could go round them.

We turned round, I dropped my car off and off we sent to go down the 'rough' back road to the main Greek highway and we were in Kardjali for just after ten.  Over to Mania for a few things that neither of us could live without, a look round the other one, into the bank but my favourite lady is on holiday for the next week or so so I'll leave that work for when she returns.  Out to lunch, pizza, cheesy chips and salad and on to Kaufland where I spotted a bargain.  I'd notice the ordinary Kindle at twenty four percent discount the previous week and thought it was a bargain but now it was on at fifty percent reduction at just seventy eight lev.....so at the present exchange rate it was a really good buy.  Two years guarantee with it and then on to Lidl and caught the end of the English week and grabbed a few pots of marmalade and some cans of Guinness....and rude not to.

Back for three thirty more or less, unpacked my shopping, registered the Kindle, watered the garden again and it was time to go off to my student's home for supper delivering gifts of Madeira cake and a Honeydew melon. Lovely night with the family...there schedule has been really upset with all the comings and goings of guests from Turkey....and the four of them still have to work.  So home now....a can of the black stuff on the go.  It's been a warm old day and looks as if it's going to be a warm old night but with the terrace door open and the bathroom window...at least there is air circulation.  LN.... from a lovely starry night in BG.....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 24, 2015, 6:28pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 24th July

Four thirty start and I'm not sure of the reason why but I thought I take advantage of the cheap rate electricity so the first load went in.  Back to bed with a coffee and waited for morning but I was half way through watering the garden when the sun managed to briefly show it's little face between the clouds and then disappear and it was considerably cooler this morning.  I got a fire going in the garden and cleared more of the scrub that's been left around from the strimming and some of the old wood,  How much old wood does a girl need...I'm getting seriously overrun by it now that the old fence is down.  My next job was to take the heads off the white and pink poppies and to get them sorted for next year...it's seed collection time only this year I'm going to have them all correctly labeled not just stuck into tins.

My painter arrived this morning at eight and had sweetcorn and beetroot with him and by nine the beetroot were bubbling on the cooker.  The sweet corn are still in their outers and I must remember to put them in the fridge.  I checked my messages on FB and there was one from Mrs D of S telling me that she was heading for Kardjali on the bus and since I hadn't managed to exchange the head for her strimmer I arranged to meet her at ten thirty leaving my painter to paint and with full instructions for closing the house down when his time was up.  Strimmer head changed, drinks in the restaurant, Kaufland, Billa and Lidl and I shall drop off the heavy stuff on Monday on my way for a swim weather permitting since she taxies it back from Djebel.  Got home for about three and head down until five and was awakened by the sounds music from the bottom square.  There's a local wedding tomorrow so it will be on with the gladrags but the night before there is music and dancing in the square but unfortunately the ladies party is the other side of Kardjali and most people will be going over there.  I made my way down picking up my Avatar on the way down and met up with my local ladies just off the square and managed to get a few photos.

Back we trooped to Avatar's garden and we sat around in the garden and it's such a beautiful evening.  More men are making it to the square and the music is still going but it will probably still be going after I've laid my head on the pillow.  Last day of the painter tomorrow and I had to get in some more reserves.  He's done a fantastic job and he's so thorough....and not a bit spilt where it shouldn't be apart from his trousers when he tripped over the honeysuckle and I did notice that they were now cutoffs just below the knee sort of long shorts.  

Gardening day tomorrow but more of a gentle day.  I need to sort out Gouldjan's bedroom for Sunday night but the wedding is tomorrow and I'm chauffeuring some of the local ladies.  Now for a little drink and then to bed said Zeberdee......LN  

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Elsa Peters
July 25, 2015, 10:05pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 26th July

Rosy glow of morning woke me up but I did nothing about it but eventually went down for coffee but firstly I had to wash about two days worth of dishes before I could enjoy the solitude of morning on the terrace.  Watered the garden and decided to get the lawn mower going to attack the areas that I didn't do the first time I took it on a test run but it started OK and it was throwing dust and seeds out of the catcher so there is obviously enough through draught.  My painter arrived this morning at seven thirty and he'd finished the balcony by eight thirty saying that he wouldn't charge me for this morning as he had to get back to sort his own garden out and had to get into Djebel to go to the supermarket.  I needed to go in anyway to get to the cash point as I wanted to settle up with him so I said that I would take him to save him going on his bike.  We were there by nine and I asked him how long he wanted and we settled on  nine thirty back at the car.  He was waiting outside the supermarket and suddenly he rushed back in and came out with a watermelon  and when I saw that it was only just over a lev I went in and got one for myself.  We put the big ladder back in the little house, he helped me carry the outside sofa to it's summer resting place on the terrace and then off he rode shouting that he'd see me tomorrow and since I've already paid him for tomorrow....I better find something for him to do....

I set to on the downstairs bedroom and washed everything in sight, put wood preservative on the second chair for the terrace as the thunder rolled around me and eventually the skies broke and dropped their load.  It did clear up for around four thirty but I was showering and shampooing and getting ready for the wedding bash at one of the local hotels.  Picked up Gouldjan, Avatar's daughter and her cousin from Djebel and we arrived in good time getting a good table to view the wedding activities.  Lovely evening and my three local lads were busy with the cameras and throwing money at the guys playing the Bulgarian bagpipes.  Home for midnight and there wasn't a sound from the pavement but I can expect it later...we beat the bus home....Easy day tomorrow...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 26, 2015, 7:28pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 26th July

What a day of activity.  Sunday is supposed to be the day of rest but it didn't turn out that way.  After last night's late night it was seven before I raised my little head from the pillow and didn't burst into action until half of the clock.  I watered the garden which was much needed and move the chair that was sitting in the middle of the yard to its rightful place on the lounge terrace and generally sorted out the cushions.  Tomorrow's job should I choose to accept it is to recover the cushions and generally smarten them all up but I'm so pleased that the two chairs and the sofa are out there with the new table and it looks the d's b's so to speak.  I think this year is about pulling it all together.

My painter came by around eight and he said that he was off fishing.  I did ask him about a rod but his comment was that he knew where the fish were and would use a net...discretely.... so that no fine is incurred in the taking of the contents of the river..Off he went on his bicycle and I thought that was it but he came back to take one of the bottles of beer secreted in the garage and said that beer with fish was superb...and off he went explaining that he has work to do for the next few days but if I want him for painting the hall, kitchen and downstairs bathroom he's available now that I've got the paint and roller.  Jobs a guddun me thinks.

Fantastic bonfire of old sawdust, shoes, hedge trimming and some of the rubbish from the little house.  It was a bitsa day....nothing specific but enough to keep me going until I ran out of steam and my overnight guest accommodation is all that could be asked for.  I'm just about to print up a bill for her as a joke,  I got the call at four saying that she had lots of luggage and could I collect her from the next village and I asked her if she had moved out because no way was she moving in.  She has her sister over from Turkey and the house is not built for what was expected of it and the children are not exactly early to bed birds like in the UK.  Any way...picked her up and with ten minutes she was fast asleep in the downstairs bedroom and dead to the world for the next two hours.  I decided that I would tidy up my seed collection on the lounge terrace until my eyelids sang a different tune and I was out for the count for an hour or so.

Into the house I went and clattered around a bit reminding her that she had come to work on stuff for her work and off she went up to the landing desk to make a start on it.  I put chicken wings in the oven, made potato salad and cooked the beans that my painter had delivered.  I served up at nine and now she's working again, I've washed up and having fine minutes of my time on here.  She's back home for six thirty tomorrow morning and I'll take her into work at eight since I want to insure the Beast...I think it's expired.  I'm delivering toilet rolls, wine and beer to Ms D of S tomorrow and she might be up for a swim if the weather looks good.  I need a day of rest....and it's a lovely feeling after a day in the sun by a pool.

Half ten and she's still tapping away...I'm going to say LN and tell her it's lights out by eleven...Only the one photo today...I was amazed by the cloud formation...the lower dark clouds were up with the big white ones...see what you make of it....LN

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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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