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Elsa Peters
November 1, 2016, 4:59pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 1st November

So here we go again...white rabbits, pinch and a punch and any more that you'd care to mention.  This change of clocks has made my early morning starts very leisurely....washed and dressed and the Bulgarian vest and tights have gone on,,,first time this year.  I took  photos of the morning, out to the Beast by seven thirty and a steady drive over there.  I took the main road this morning...the car had a little ice on the windscreen but I hadn't got home until ten last night so not much ice had formed.  The radio was a little rubbish on the way over ...I couldn't seem to lock into a station,  It might be something to do with the cold.

So into the Beast they jumped before eight and it was certainly nippy round the gills.  I'd checked the temperature before I left and it was minus three so winter draws on so they say and Bekir proudly showed me a pair of insulated boots...I think he found his little rubber slippers not up to the job yesterday but no change for Sally.  Socks, knitted slippers and rubber shoes...lide a little mountain goat.  Coffee came thick and fast for them today...Sally had lit his fire in the lane, I'd lit mine when we'd arrived home and it took ages for any heat to be in the sun but then the icy wind struck up after lunch.  I waited for the temperature to go up before I went out to play in the garden....I did the paper version of Sunday's sudoku...I hadn't had much luck on screen but eventually managed it.  

So out I went and attacked the rose bush and old sloe bushes at the bottom of the garden and both were really vicious and I have the scratches to prove it.  I also took down part of the fence where the new section is going to be started tomorrow mainly to gauge the levels.  It's a fine line between looking like a major boundary or one that blends in to the hillside so a layer of bricks has been applied and I'm going to fill in the base of the wall to see how it looks when there is soil in the gap....it's very much like British Rail....mind the gap or be mindful of the gap.  

Fires and bonfires were kept going all day and I legged it over the wall to get some shots of their work to date.  Everything is set for the wall to be built tomorrow and then columns and topping.  They might even get it finished this week.  So men home,I've just cooked a nardinitza with onions and had it with hot tomato sauce, mayo with a couple of slices of bread.  That will do me for tonight.  I think a bath is called for, a few aches and pains need to get sorted and then a chilled evening ready for work tomorrow.  Boiler on....LN...and no jumping in the deep end....LN

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Elsa Peters
November 1, 2016, 5:26pm Report to Moderator

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And now for the pickies

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Elsa Peters
November 2, 2016, 5:39pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 2nd November

So last night I was preparing to watch Eggheads but nodded off during Pointless and missed it entirely.  I must have needed it so to speak...bring back summer time...I was used to that.  Eventually got to bed at eleven thirty and again it was a six thirty start, down for seven for coffee and the phone went and it was Bekir saying that he had work to do and they wouldn't be with me today.  In one way I was pleased...the day was all mine and it looked to be a good one with the wind coming from the south but this means another day late on the completion of the wall and I want to get the garden sorted before winter really sets in.

So what did I do for the rest of the day?  I decided to take it easy....no real rush to do anything.  The fire was still going so I gave that the kiss of life and it does make a difference keeping it going and it only takes a few logs to do it.  Breakfast occurred at ten thirty and it consisted of three eggs scrambled in the oil from last night's spicy sausage and onions.  I'd not tried it before, they tasted OK served on buttered toast with yet more coffee.  I had a mental list of things that I could do but the only thing that I managed was one load of washing...it was such a brilliant day, sunshine and a breeze and I should have got it in earlier.  It's now on the airer in the bathroom before getting put away.  It wasn't damp...just cold.

So I took a trip into Djebel to get to the post office before the closing time of four thirty....wrong....what is written on the door doesn't mean a thing...it was only four fifteen when I arrived but the metal gate was locked and not a light in the place.  Reckon they'd shut up shop and gone home since not many people post letters and pensions and payments happen in the mornings.  So at four thirty I was sitting with my student's mum in their shop and catching up on 'things'.  We covered all sorts of topics like meditation, medication, constipation in babies and the journey of the moon at this time of year and the planets.  The odd customer entered and got served but we were back to it.  I did tease her little boy though...he was clutching his teddy bear and I said that teddy had asked me if he could come to my house for a holiday....but then he realised it was a tease and skipped off clutching the said bear.

Home for just before six and again rescued the fire and it was then that I realised the washing was still out and did something about it.  I went out and took a few shots of the new moon Venus and now I know that winter is here.  Just after seven thirty my time....I'll have another go at posting it tomorrow at some point.  I'm down to the kitchen...the hunger grubs are munching.  LN...I've set the alarm for Eggheads...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 3, 2016, 6:06pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 3rd November

So a splendid night's sleep and a beautiful morning to wake up to.  The mist was lying in the valley over the Greek road and it took ages to clear.  The sun wasn't anywhere near so I thought but lying in bed and it surprised me...I was reading away and suddenly it was there. Out with the camera again.  

No phone calls this morning so I was on collection duty...I have men working.  It wasn't so cold this but I still took it steady...there was a little frost on the road.  I stopped off at the bread van in one of the villages and picked up breakfast for all of us.  There were lots of cars parked on the square outside the restaurant in the men's village and a digger was manoeuvring and I missed Bekir heading for his bread van and also picking up breakfast for us.  Ah well, we all had breakfast and lunch...enough to last the day for me at least.  So Sally was there with the wheelbarrow and mixed a whole load of mortar for the wall building and what a difference a day makes.  We would have been there today but they ran out of the mix at four forty so no way was there going to be any more action tonight so they were ready for home at five.  I made the trip into Djebel to post my letter and mentioned to the postmaster that I'd been there at four fifteen the previous day and where was he but there wasn't a glimmer.  He took my letter and gave me my receipt which always makes me laugh and not a work was spoken about the previous day.  I didn't hang around in town and decided that the men were OK so I went on to the pc, played a few games and did FB and emails, moved down on to the sofa in the sun and promptly went to sleep until one.  I obviously need it despite having the day off yesterday.

Lit the fire before we left and men home by five thirty.  I stopped off at Mrs D of S's for a catch-up, D of S is over for a week and I might even have to baby-sit so they can have an evening to themselves.  To be arranged.  Home by seven and my fire was still chugging along nicely...another couple of logs lobbed on but apparently it's not going to be fristy frosty tonight according to Bekir's newspaper.  It's normally wrong...I'll let you know.  Nearly time for Eggheads so going to get this posted.  Mainly morning and evening photos tonight and of course one of the new Berlin wall....columns going in tomorrow and the lid will go on next week.  LN...Pictures to post...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 4, 2016, 5:14pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 4th November

What a silly night last night was.  I was watching television on the pc and they were advertising Question Time and I decided to stay up and watch it.  It's all to do with this post Brexit nonsense...why don't they just get on with it and if they need help with how to kick Brussels...bring back Nigel.  I love watching his attacks on the 'hierarchy', he certainly does a good job of it.  After that I seemed to be thrust into another political debate and a couple of 'would be serious people' (Kevin Maguire and Jo Coburn) were doing a skit based on the Morecambe and Wise breakfast sketch...very funny.  So eventually I got to bed at two thirty and decided that it would be a good idea to set my phone alarm just to make sure that I was up for the boys.

I managed to wake up before the alarm and was washed, dressed and coffeed in quicksticks.  There wasn't much of a sunrise in my neck of the woods and there were clouds all around and it's been like that for most of the day.  So nobody bought breakfast this morning...I'd missed the van between two stops and Bekir didn't bother so it was eleven before I was out with the toaster to knock up a couple of slices slathered with butter and the last of the marmalade until Lidl come up with more.  There was another discussion on the height of the wall and I'm basing most of it on removing the seven years of builder's rubble that's been dumped against the hedgeline.  I've also worked out that I want to see about three and a half breeze blocks all the way down the garden and considering that it's on a bit of a slope...it took some judging but I feel sure that I'm there.  Well I will be after a few more days pushing stuff backwards and forwards and burning debris.  The fence is at last down and I wouldn't like the Herculean task of counting the number of nails I used to keep those bastard bovines out...   We did have a bit of a laugh though...Beauty's battery is flat and I couldn't manage to squeeze in because I'd parked it too near the wall and between the wall and Beauty were the breeze blocks that we needed to complete the wall.  I eventually got in and they were having to push her out into the yard but I suddenly realised that the steering lock was on and I was heading for the porch of the little house.  There was enough room to manoeuvre and the said blocks were brought into play.

So Salli ws still on the wrong end of a shovel and a wheelbarrow and his job was to get on with the columns after finishing off the wall.  After his lunch I caught him sitting in the lane over the camp fire and with his permission I took his photo...He's got such a gentle face and so full of character. Meanwhile ...back in the little house...Bekir sleeps and by the time he woke I had my own garden fire going and he commented that it was cold so I asked him if he'd like a blanket for his bed.  

So three fires going today...two outside and one in the house and the house is toasty tonight....I've just thrown another one on now.  Men home, I drove through to Djebel to fill up with diesel and stopped to buy a few things from the supermarket.  I'm not sure what's on the cards for tomorrow...I might be going it to Kardjali with my painter or alternatively he can chop my wood for money so his choice is...spend or save and I really don't mind what happens.  Just a few pickies tonight....I've been far too busy...   LN...Supper or no supper...that is the question....LN

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Elsa Peters
November 5, 2016, 4:54pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 5th November

So I had my bath last night and fell asleep in there as per normal.  Topped the bath up a couple of times and warmed up before I got out, got my pj's on and slept until seven this morning.  I remembered to draw the curtains so the light didn't wake me up.  I went down to make coffee and to find my phone to see if I was shopping with my painter or not but as I was going downstairs I saw him approaching the door and he was dressed in work clothes.  In this village you have to get work when you can get it so I didn't begrudge the change of plans...my work will be there when he doesn't have other...it's on the back burner.

It was a slow start to the day and not much has happened on my mountainside. I made spicy sausage with fried egg so set myself up for the day but it turned out to be a day of 'could have' but didn't. I did manage to get Beauty back in the garage having charged the battery overnight and this time I remembered not to park her so close to the breeze blocks that they can't be got at.  The intention today was to get down and do a bit more work on the wall to make sure that I don't want another layer of blocks in the middle by my toilet pit.  I can't change the level of that since it's concrete and I'm still not sure if it's tall enough.  It is from the outside but it's the inside I'm concerned about and the final look of it.

So at twelve I was reading, I decided that it was time to get my head down and I did until three this afternoon so the gardening went to the wall not concentrating on it.  This morning's sun was heading round and down so I lit the fire and it's chugging along now.  I watched the rugby this afternoon, did the Daily Mail sudoku after the third attempt but eventually in record time for a Saturday posting.  Chicken wings with potatoes and onions for supper and that should be ready by seven thirty...Strictly tonight so a pleasant relaxing evening for me.

Just a thought that struck me today.  I've seen lots of big bonfires on the internet and I suppose I've become more precious about wood since I've been here.  I see old ladies with sticks on their backs and how much wood plays a part in their existence.  It keeps body and soul together for the winter, for cooking and heating one room in the winter.  I have my own preparation to do.  I come to rely on it totally for heating especially if I lose electricity as happened two years ago.  There will be no bonfires in my garden.....and normally I buy a few fireworks but this year I haven't bothered....I'm kicking back against commercialism.  Rant over...

So supper is heading that way....not many pickies tonight...been far too busy doing nothing.  LN...Enjoy whatever you get up to...LN

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November 5, 2016, 8:48pm Report to Moderator

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I've seen lots of big bonfires on the internet and I suppose I've become more precious about wood since I've been here.  I see old ladies with sticks on their backs and how much wood plays a part in their existence.

I agree with you about that. I've also seen large bonfires with vast amounts of wood being burnt, not just recently either. Surely these people must know that local oldies are in real need of some decent cheap or free wood to keep warm during the winter. I think it is a great pity that some of these people burning their waste wood on a bonfire don't think about the needs of their neighbours, who, lets be honest, in general would share their last seedlings, or whatever, with others.
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Elsa Peters
November 6, 2016, 5:34pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 6th October

So yes it was Strictly last night and I really have to say that the most improvement is for Ed Balls performance.  I'm eating my words,,one has to recognise achievement despite all of the judges comments there's a turnaround...

Six start this morning but I wasn't out of bed at the crack of...no ...I was but only to take photos from the balcony.  The dawn was stupendous this morning...the sky was so red which mellowed dramatically to a paler hue and ....my battery needed changing so the camera got put to one side.  I was washed and dressed by eight and realised that the fire was still showing a glimmer so gave it a boost with a little kindling and it's been going well all day.  The sun's been out but the wind has been blowing stuff around all day.  It was so good though that I put a load of washing in and within an hour I was bringing it in again mainly to stop it ending up in Greece but it was dry in quicksticks.  Meanwhile, I got the garden fork out and set to on the bank until the wind got the better of me.  There is just so much rubbish down there but fortunately there's enough space to dump it in between the old hedge line and the wall. I'm finding old tiles from the original bathroom and the floor tile trimmings but I suppose I'll eventually reach decent soil if I did deeply enough.

I made two phone calls...one to the Librarian to catch up on how she was feeling and how her dog was.  She'd had a visit to the vet and he's been put on antibiotics...I think it's dog flu.  My second call was to Princess to formulate the festive season and I've got two things on the 'to do' list....bread sauce and trifle.  The old joke came out...'can you speak up a bit..I'm a trifle deaf' and we both had a chuckle at it.

I made carrot, potato and chicken soup this morning and that set me up for the day.  No supper required...I'm still digesting it.  Tomorrow I'm off to Kardjali with the Librarian...I'm running out of a few things from the store cupboard so one shop should see me until I leave for the UK and I have to pick up my refund for the leaf collecting and blowing machine that they can't replace.  

I've watched the world cycle track championships this afternoon...what a brilliant bunch are in the wings.  Strictly results tonight so I'll be shouting at the screen again and back on the treadmill again...the wall should take another couple of days.  Photos of the sunrise and very little else today.  LN...Filmon evening for me...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 7, 2016, 5:35pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 7th October

Six thirty start and wasn't even sure how early or late it was...it was dark out there but then at last a glimmer.  It was more over towards Greece and I didn't think we'd see much of that sun today, rain had been suggested, but it didn't happen.  As the clock ticked on it was like turning up the contrast on the tv...it got redder and redder and then the contrast was turned down again and we went back to the gentle morning.

Out for the men at seven thirty and they were waiting.  I went down to the bread van and came back with only an unsliced loaf...all the breakfast goodies had been sold on the way to my village.  The men set to, Sally removed the shuttering from the bottom wall that's been there for the last year and a half.  I've had various offers to remove it which I declined...if there was a problem and part of the cement had come away..the person who put it there had to be responsible for the outcome once it was removed...this is my prescribed thinking pattern of late.

I had two slices of the crusty bread covered with butter for breakfast and arrived at the bottom of the garden clutching my new curved hand saw and attacked the mulberry that had sprouted left, right and centre,  The left and right have gone and I would have sorted out the centre but the Librarian appeared and we were in the Beast and heading for Kardjali in quicksticks.  Over to the cheapy shop and I picked up a couple of sweaters and some baby clothes for the princely sum of five leva.  Over to Kaufland and did the circuit, Kaufland restaurant for lunch, on to Lidl and home for two thirty.  We certainly don't mess around.  Coffee for the boys and tea and coffee for us and we sat in the sun on the terrace watching the men work.  The wind had definitely turned round and was coming up from Greece...almost balmy.  Off she went, I unpacked and put away my stuff, got the washing machine going for the newly acquired, pegged it out and by this time it was heading for men home time.  Bit of sad news...they aren't working tomorrow...apparently Bekir has homework to do so poor Sally goes without pay again.  It's a pity he didn't tell me before we set off...I could have spent the night at the Librarians and done her market tomorrow...ah well....I've got plenty to get on with in the garden.

So fire going and seven fifteen my time....LN...Time to chill...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 8, 2016, 3:57pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 8th November

What a day....The code yellow warning for wind was about right...everything has been skittering all over the place and my day has been spent in the house with the fire going.  It's not that it's cold but the wind and rain makes if feel like you need the fire going.  I did venture out onto the balcony upstairs to take a few photos but to be honest...not much to photograph.

A little bit of a surprise...my phone went at around lunchtime but by the time I'd found it in my bodywarmer pocket it had stopped.  I checked the number and it was a strange code so I was about to check it out on the internet to see if it was Nigeria calling telling me that I'd been left a few million by and uncle that I didn't have.  As I was half way up the stairs, the phone went again but this time I answered it and it was Gouldjan or rather my Cinderella from Germany where she's made her home now that she's married.  We chatted for a while, said that we missed each other and I told her that I keep looking in bus shelters locally to see if she's waiting for a lift to work.  They're getting on very well there, they have a new apartment ready to move in to and she's taking more language lessons in the new year.  She's in a good position.  She speaks Bulgarian, Turkish, French, English and soon to be German so she should do well there.  She's got the support of a good man who said that he doesn't want her out cleaning to bring in some money....they'll manage until she's got her exams and see what turns up.   She made me promise that I'll visit...I said I would but in the spring.

So as for the rest of the day...wind rain, more wind and more rain and tomorrow it's threatening the same but with thunder thrown in.  I might even phone the men and call off tomorrow....no point if they're going to get soaked.  Fire needs attention.  LN...Got my priorities...LN right

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