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Elsa Peters living a new life in Bulgaria    General Boards    My Diary by Elsa Peters  ›  NOVEMBER 2016
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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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Elsa Peters
November 9, 2016, 3:12pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 9th November

What a rough old night and at six thirty this morning the rain was belting down and it was blowing a gale out there.  At seven I phoned Bekir and  suggested that they stayed at home today...I'd checked the weather report on the internet and by lunchtime it was supposed to be really hammering it down.  As it was it came much earlier and the wind didn't abate at all.  

So by nine this morning I'd got a load of washing done and it was on the upstairs airer, cooked a couple of poached eggs for breakfast, couldn't really play on the internet since by this time the thunder had started in earnest and for the rest of the day it's been a lazy one.  I did go out and survey the damage and pci up the overturned plants and bushes and rescued the sunbed cover which was slowly working itself away from the frame but it wasn't until I came back inside that I noticed that the honeysuckle was no longer resident on the terrace but was unceremoniously deposited on the terrace along with the framework that supports it.  Oh dear...I shall need the help of one of the men tomorrow or Friday to lift it back up...it's pretty heavy.  

I also noticed that I had a lake by the front gate due to the fact that the drainage pipe was blocked from the other end.  I donned my yellow wellies, putting on my water engineer head and brandishing a length of wire I poked out the said pipe and made a trench on the exit outside the gate and in a short time it had almost disappeared.  In the meantime the electricity had gone off so that meant cleaning off the accumulated objects from the little petchka in the kitchen and moving the hot coals from the central heating petchka since no electricity...no pump.

The thunder is still rattling around and I'm posting early in case the electricity goes off again....it's on for now...but who knows.  Not sure what the weather is going to do tomorrow...it could be another day without the men but the cows were on the perimeter this morning and that's where they stayed.....jobsaguddun so to speak.  Better get supper cooked just in case....we wanted rain and by golly we got it.  LN..Kitchen bound...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 10, 2016, 6:15pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 10th November

So I phoned the men this morning for a weather report and according to the radio and the internet, it was going to be dull at first but then it would get better during the day and...no rain.  Well my internet did say rain after four this afternoon and on the way back I mentioned this to Bekir and he said no way so I took a leva bet out with him and he won.  He wouldn't accept the money though...it's double or quits tomorrow.

On my drive over I managed to see a couple of fir trees that had come down and blocked my side of the road and there were several large rocks that had been brought down.  On the way back there were a few biggies on the road so we took it gingerly.  The men were straight to it...I cooked bacon and egg and made a sandwich out of it and got my strength together to tackle the honeysuckle and get it back to it's rightful place.  The bench support came apart so it was out with the hammer and nails before I tackled the plant itself and I did have to call on Bekir to lift it into its resting place.  I'd trimmed it back quite hard and managed to get a couple of rooted plants and they're in the garden already.

I concentrated on the wall today removing some of the bushes so that Sally could get at the wall to put the wooden capping on.  Bekir was busy making and inserting the metal supports in the channel and as predicted, the sun came out and it turned into a pleasant day until the sun set and the temperature dropped.  I dropped them home on time and called in to Mrs D of S but missed D of S...he'd been sent out to get beer and a bit like Oates....it might take some time.  I'd lit the fire before we left and the house was toasty to come back to...I've just polished off the remains of a packet of chocolate chip cookies so supper will have to wait.  Same again tomorrow please with the weather....I have more work to do on the wall....LN....Wish me luck...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 11, 2016, 5:28pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 11th November

So I woke at five thirty, realised that I could have another hour or so and so I did....You know those mornings where you are so cosy in bed that you don't want to be anywhere else and you snuggle down again knowing that you can,  Morning was breaking at the second wakening and I love the first lights.  Watching it evolve through the different hues and hopefully culminating in that bright beauty bringing my central heating in.

Washed, dressed and out to get the men at just after seven thirty and popped in the shop to get fresh bread.  Bekir disappeared to their bread van and Sally said that he'd gone to buy the old bread for the dogs...wrong...he'd bought breakfast for all of us...marmalade filled sweet rolls.  I doctored mine with butter and more marmalade and sat out on the terrace in the sun with a coffee and was it warm out there.  The men set to mixing the filling for the shuttering on the top of the wall and Sally was the barrow boy.  I don't know how he keeps going....there's nothing of him so to speak but he's remarkably fit and with stamina.  I was out to the garden and I realised that the work I'd done so far was being undone with a wheelbarrow being pushed over it so I found other things to do.  With the weather closing in I've put most of the plants that don't like the cold in the little house and taking cuttings of the geraniums ready for next year.  I don't bring them in the house....I really don't like the smell.  The petunias have all been cut back and this afternoon I set to on the frog garden and took the marigolds up.  They'd all been attacked by the frost and now they're all bonfired.  Lots of seeds fell when I was lifting them so I know that they'll be plenty for next year.

Haciber came round this afternoon and there have been two mevlits in the village so we all had cheesy bread and sweet buns and chocolate drinks courtesy of the prayers for the dead.  The men were back to it....it's along old wall and unfortunately Sally mixed up too much stuff in his last offering so it was late when they got away.  Bekir is over to a health open air spa in Greece tonight with his buddies and then supper in Zlatograd...it's much cheaper eating here than in Greece.  Best of both worlds.  I was home by six and the fire I'd lit before I went was still going strong and the house thoroughly warmed up.  Two more days on the wall and then a few days off and on to the little house terrace....all go in this neck of the woods.  LN....Time to start my weekend...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 12, 2016, 4:48pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 12th November

So it was a five o'clock start and I'm not really sure why.  I thought that I'd read for a while and then drop off again but seven o'clock came and I was still reading so decided to make a day of it.  Morning sunrise was wonderful but the glory sadly didn't last for the rest of the day.  

I was out at eight getting rid of the bathroom and kitchen rubbish and reestablishing my yesterday bonfire that had sadly let me down.  I had great plans for today intending to stack the wood properly sorting out the rubbish for outside use and getting rid of the 'bits' that the two men have left scattered over the garden.  The bonfire was going well and then the rain started....that morning had disappeared and I wasn't really liking the one that I was left with.  I stuck it out for a while but was getting wetter so came in.  I posted my morning pickies on Facebook didn't bother with breakfast but kept thinking about it...you know those mornings when things just get in the way and put to one side until really you can't wait any longer.  I got the fire going and it was back to my book for a while and then toasted ham sandwiches sprung to mind and after that I made leek and potato soup adding a few bacon rashers from the other day.  Back to my book remembering that I had soup on the go, switched off the cooker and a wave of tiredness overtook me so I got my head down for an hour.

It was still raining when I woke up and a plastic stool come table was zinging its way around the terrace but fortunately I brought in yesterday's coffee cup earlier otherwise that would have gone.  I've had a very lazy day and why not...building work is such hard work....I've just had my soup...I put half of it through the blender and it was delicious served with buttered toast.  It will do me until breakfast...rib sticking stuff.  Strictly tonight and I'm hoping for better weather tomorrow....I don't like two days of 'nothingness' together ...I get twitchy.  Clouds are scudding tonight and that moon seems to be filling out even though it's not supposed to be the Beaver Moon until the 14th...it's got a couple of days to go.  Apparently we won't see another as big as this until 2034 and I doubt very much I'll be seeing that.. ......LN....Down to the fire to keep the home fires burning....LN

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Elsa Peters
November 13, 2016, 4:49pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 13th November

Seven this morning but what a storm we had last night....Lashing rain, gusty winds and thunder and lightening.  It started roughly towards the end of Strictly and I hung in there.  Normally I'll put the pc down immediately but didn't...I waited for the last couple to dance and that was it.  Thank you and good night, I was down on the sofa in front of the fire, drew the curtains so that I didn't have the panoramic view of the storm...it was just too close.  It eased off about eleven so I was up to bed, curtains drawn and it worked...as I said...seven this morning. I'd beaten the sunrise but nothing particularly dramatic about it this morning...the sky was clear with not even a cloud to threaten its appearance and it was up in a flash and stayed out for most of the day but the wind was chill.  

Poached eggs on toast for breakfast, a load of washing done and dusted and out there and I walked the garden with the intention of having a bit of a sort out...wrong.  I'd been reading about chimney fires on FB and decided to clear out my wood burner.  It had been a little reluctant yesterday and me reading things into things and expecting the worst took it too its ultimate conclusion.  Wood burner...done...pipes...done...chimney...as far as I could reach with my bendy pipe...done....flue box in the bathroom...done.  I did end up with a few facial smudges and a Hitler type shadowing on the upper lip but that was soon fixed after all the cleaning up was done.  I lit the fire to check for smoke leaks but nothing that a bang on the pipes didn't fix and it's been going like a dream all day.  

Remsie popped round this afternoon and was amazed at how warm the house was.  She had three wood burners and most of her day is spent running round keeping them all going.  It reminds me of plate spinning...there's always one that seems to need attention.  Off she went to visit Zelinger my other neighbour....keep on the move and someone else will sort out the fires.

Six thirty my time and just finished the last of the soup,  I've put a jacket potato in the oven to have later and some meat that I wasn't sure what it was but now that it's thawed out it's gammon pieces and it's smelling pretty good from up here.  Strictly results tonight and I'm not really sure how it's going to pan out...'Jo Public' obviously has favourites despite the calibre of the dancing.  

Not many pics today.  As I said the sun was up before I noticed it and the pipes were back before I managed to get the camera out.  As for the moon...one more day and it should be at full volume and I'm hoping it stays clear to capture it.  LN....Jacket and requires my attention...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 14, 2016, 9:06pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 14th November

Six thirty start again and that moon was just as bright this morning as last night.  I'd draw the curtains but I don't want to oversleep when it's a work day for my boys...said Wendy.  I took a few pictures of the morning and we were back to a cloudy blue sky which is somewhat more dramatic than the clear blue one but the sun had to fight its way over the low cloud base over the mountains.

I had to thaw the car out this morning...there was a good layer of frost on the windscreen and I was thankful that they boys at the garage added anti-freeze to my washers. Two squirts and it was clear and the rest could ease off as the car warmed up.   I was surprised to see that my neighbour had arrived from Turkey and lord help them in their shell of a house....I bed they're pretty cold in there but their business not mine.  Bekir was waiting but without chainsaw so I reminded him that he was supposed to bring it and he went back for it.  I headed over to their bread wagon and picked up a loaf and breakfast for us all for around four lev...not bad at all.  Sally was lingering and wouldn't get int he car until I did....he just doesn't take liberties.

Coffee to go with the buns and they started on the continuation of the wall.  At last I made a decision on one section of the wall that I felt needed another layer of breeze blocks.  It's the stretch behind the toiled tank and I can't lower it unlike the rest of the garden since it has a concrete top on it so I dug the breeze blocks out of the garage and it was done in quicksticks...only eight blocks.  The rest of the edging is finished now and the shuttering complete...tomorrow will see more or less the finished wall apart from tarting it up on the brickwork which should take another day or so.  

Bit of a shock today...the man who delivers the ballast misjudged the gate and more or less took the small one off its hinges leaving a repair job for Bekir and myself.  Unfortunately what could I say but it would have been nice if he'd have said sorry but he was more concerned about the door of his wagon.  The men chugged on, I was digging up shrubs in the wrong place and putting them in a better place.  This garden is going to take a little time to put right again but it will be well worth it.

Dropped the men home and carried on to my student's house for supper with her family...Lentil soup followed by grilled mackerel and salad and finished off with their version of a baked apple which was probably better when it was warm so I should have gone yesterday instead.  The father shot out after supper and came back with some meddlers from the tree in their garden and I'd forgotten how tasty they are.  I hope my tree in the garden decides to fruit next year.  It's supposed to be minus six this evening so I relit the fire when I got back home...it just keeps the chill off.  Just a few pictures...that super moon didn't look as big tonight as it did last night but at least it's shining.  LN....Hot drink and bed.....LN

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Elsa Peters
November 15, 2016, 6:43pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 15th November

So last night I got the fire going furiously and it was too much effort to go up stairs to bed so I took to the downstairs bedroom for the first time this winter.  I'd put a new quilt cover on it that was warm to get in to so I snuggled down and crashed out until six thirty.  Not much of a sunrise...there was a faint hint of orange that had disappeared by the time I'd managed to find the camera.

Coffee and out for the men and it was Sally's turn to get the breakfast in.  I settled for the cheesy bun while the boys had the marmalade ones and I cut mine open to find nothing inside it so I headed for the fridge and filled it with my white cheese.  I put it in the frying pan and warmed it through and showed the men saying that I thought I'd won the lottery on the bun front.  They'd sussed it out though...and knew that there was teasing a foot.  They carried on with the wall, I was out clearing the garden but I soon came in because if was cold out there.  The fire was going when I got up and I've kept it going all day..but I realised that I was out of kindling so I spent an hour or so chopping up the old wood from the little house.  I cleaned out the half oil barrel and that now holds the kindling.

A quick trip in to Djebel this afternoon since the men were out of cement and I stopped off at the leva shop and bought a new pair of fingerless gloves....I know I have some Dennis the Menace ones somewhere but couldn't be bothered to search for them.  I popped in to my student mum's shop since I'd seen a photo of my student by the sea.  They'd gone off to Greece on Sunday and we joked about how much they'd spent on two coffees and two juices....a little more than you would have to have spent here.  

So back home, finished clearing the leaves from the yard and dumping them under the new wall.  The men chugged on and the wall is finished apart from the final grouting and the four pillars to make it the same as the front wall.  Bring it on you cows....Men home early...they'd run out of made up cement and had no where to put it....and I'd put chicken wings, a jacket potato and an apple filled with fruit, brown sugar and honey in the oven.  Back home and everything was cooked and is now eaten....delicious.  

No photos today...too cold to be standing out there but if the sun is out tomorrow I promise to make up for it.    LN....One last push on the wall tomorrow...LN
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Elsa Peters
November 16, 2016, 5:39pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 16th November

Sunrise came up on me pretty swiftly this morning...I didn't wake until seven which was a first for me.  I really should buy another clock for the wall in the winter lounge.  From the bed I can't see the time so panicked a bit but checked on my bathroom visit to confirm that I wasn't too early or too late for anything.  I put a log on the fire and went back to bed with my coffee, eventually easing myself out at seven twenty five giving myself ten minutes to get washed and dressed and five minutes to thaw the car out.  It wasn't a heavy frost so the washers did it for me so no scraping involved but the sky is pretty clear tonight so it could just be heavier.

Nobody got breakfast this morning so I settled for poached on toast and the men had what they'd got stashed in their bags or left over from yesterday.  I didn't rush out this morning but waited for the thaw before I went for it.  I cleared the bonfire out and started it but it wasn't having any of it today.  I'll put it down to the wind being in the wrong direction and the stuff that I was trying to burn being too damp.  I'll have another go tomorrow.  I cleared on of the big bushes out that was covered in old wire netting and I heard the boys chortling... I think Bekir was saying that if I waited he would do it with the chainsaw but it became an obsession to finish it.  I got most of it out but the root went off into another sucker and this was pretty close to my toilet pit so I think it's best left to Bekir.  The root was about four inches in diameter and certainly not going to tackle it with a handsaw...I wasn't that determined.  So I went back to finding the levels against the breeze blocks and have uncovered the old tiles from the bathroom dumped six or seven years ago.  It's a bit like memory lane...my own history in the making.

Sally worked on the rendering while Bekir made the shuttering for the columns so that it matches the wall down the lane.  I'm only having four done for privacy in the downstairs bedroom and I can grow some decent shrubs against it.  Decent weather today but the temperature didn't go up that much.  I did manage ten minutes on the sunbed but the sweaters were pretty necessary...to keep moving is to keep warm.  Men home by just after five thirty.  I'd put my hamburgers ready for the pan and the chippies were already to go in so it was all systems go.  Burgers on plus a sliced onion, chip pan on, beans open, half a can of beans eaten with spoon from can, mayo and spicy tomato sauce in dish, tasted hamburgers and the cats or dogs will enjoy them I'm sure tomorrow but not for me.  They tasted sour and I didn't like the texture.  First and last time that I've had them from Kaufland.  Served up the remains of the beans and chippies and they filled the gap.  Seven thirty my time so almost time for a little relax with Filmon and we've just had a flash of lightening...that wasn't forecast...LN...Better get posting quickly...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 17, 2016, 7:19pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 17th November

So today would have been my sister's birthday so I'll still wish her a happy day wherever she might be.  

Five thirty start and it was a gentle resuscitation and the hot water was soon belting around the system.  It was pretty cold over night...I caught the thermometer at minus four when I went out to empty the ash can.  The house was warm though...the fire had been going all night and the sun came up at post seven which boosted my central heating no end.  My internal thermometer was ticking around twenty two.  Over for the men and they were ready and waiting at five to eight.  Nobody bought breakfast again.  The vans were just in the wrong place.  I made coffee for all of us since it was so cold but as the day wore on it turned into a very pleasant day.  Into Djebel this morning to put some diesel in the Beast and Sally asked me to get petrol for him so it was twenty levas worth into a water bottle.  I also popped in to the shop that I got my fingerless gloves in and bought two plastic trays for my winter plants, lots of goodies for my 'Christmas' presents for my ladies.  It's not their holiday but it's a thank you for the things that they do for me during the year.

Sally was still on his wall finishing, the men filled the column shuttering and I was working in the garden.  The other shuttering was removed from the wall, Bekir was busy with his chainsaw and most of the structuring is done now on the garden...and now let the hard work begin.  I've got loads of soil to shunt around and I have to bury the seven years of rubbish.  Huge garden bonfire to get rid of the trimming from the logs that Bekir cut, I've got most of them away but the rest I can do tomorrow.

Men home and I stopped off and had some time with Mrs D of S catching up on the saga of documents for the new little lady.  It all hinges round our registration number on our residency cards..  if you don't have one you can't gat anything done including her first injections.  I was home for seven thirty, chip butty for supper and catching up on Children in Need and the rickshaw challenge...Brave youngsters.  Only a few pickies ...LN...It's been a busy day...LN  

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Elsa Peters
November 18, 2016, 6:13pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 18th November

Six thirty start and opened the curtains and saw...nothing but fog and freezing fog to boot.  I was back to bed with a coffee after I'd got the fire livened up, out of bed by ten after seven and in the car by seven thirty.  Such a good idea putting anti-freeze in the washers...it takes all the hard work out of clearing the ice from the windscreen.  A couple of minutes with the window heaters on and I was ready to set sail.

Picked up the men and really fancied cheesy bread for breakfast but there wasn't one mobile bread van in sight.  I was so determined that I dropped the men off and headed for the next village but I didn't have to go that far.  He was in the square surrounded by my local ladies and they were surprised to see me pull up in the car and I had to explain that I'd dropped the men off.  So cheesy bread for all of us and coffee and then I tied a piece of string to Sally's leg so we wouldn't loose him at the bottom of the garden and the next thing I head the drill going.  I checked it out and Bekir was removing the old corner of the little house ready to replace it with new metal and concrete.  They didn't bother getting the mix right in the olden days so I'm told.  

The next thing we heard was Zelinger shouting for Bekir to head over to her house via the fields and we thought that there was something seriously wrong.  As it was she handed him nine yeasty pancakes and a carton of juice which really buggered up lunch and sleep for Bekir but we ate them and they were back to work in half an hour.  This made the afternoon exceptionally long but I told them that as soon as they thought they'd finished for the day...we could be on our way.  As it was it was four forty when they packed up.  Bekir had found Australia down his hole and Sally was now working on the outside of the wall.

Funny incident this afternoon.  A plane came overhead which is not normal unless it's military so I took a photo of it using full zoom.  A few seconds later it was doing a turn and ended up going back it had come from and about half an hour later it was back but without any jet stream so I snapped it again.  I've checked for any incident on the internet but nothing...just curious.  I got the fire going again around three this afternoon and by four it was really humming.  The remains of yesterday's burn up were relit with added fuel and some would argue that it's a waste but I've got so much hanging around and this stuff had lots of old wire netting embedded so best way for it to go.

Men home for five more or less, I got back for five thirty and we've had a lovely day.  The weather turned out fine eventually and you could actually get down to one sweater.  Fire been going inside all day so the house is toasty this evening.  Not sure what tomorrow is going to bring....I'll see how I feel in the morning if it's a 'carry on gardening day' or a shopping trip in to the grand metrolopes....Fish finger sandwiches for supper....I should do OK until tomorrow....LN...Teletime for teletubbies...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 19, 2016, 7:05pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 19th November

Six thirty start despite it wasn't a work day.  Coffee and back to bed since there wasn't an ounce of sleep in me.  I played a few silly computer games but was up and about by eight...I had work to do.  There wasn't much of a morning...lots of mist around again and it took ages to burn off.  Breakfast of poached eggs on toast and then it was out to it.  I eventually got rid of the remains of the big stump that's been burning for the last two days and at last there's no wire netting in the burning pit.  It should be straightforward from now on.

I was working away on the computer and noticed that there were two four by fours on the hillside.  The one left gingerly over the hillside and eventually appeared on the main road.  The second one left after ten minutes but unfortunately they'd left a gate open and when the sheep came over the hill, they headed straight for the gap and there was some heated shouting and redirecting the sheep to the allotted pastures.  One of the jeeps came back after about an hour and positioned himself back where he started...I'm just a bit curious what they were doing...I'll probably be informed...someone will know.

The rest of the afternoon was spent digging up roots but the big one I decided to build a fire under it.  No amount of digging was going to move it, well not the amount I was ready to do.  I came in at five and got my indoor fire going again, watched the tennis semifinal with Mr Murray, put the heater on and have not long surfaced feeling exceptionally clean and in PJ's ready for bed and lined up for Strictly.

Same again tomorrow I think...more soil to shift and sift.....LN...Strictly has arrived...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 20, 2016, 6:02pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 20th November

So what happened to the day of rest....it didn't visit me today....

Six thirty start which seems pretty normal, coffee back to bed after putting in a load of washing, breakfast of baked beans on toast at eight and ready to tackle the final frontier with the tree stump.  I kitted myself up with axe, pick axe, matches in case I got desperate and resorted to desperate measures.  It was one of those jobs where you start with one tool, decided to use the next, go back to the first and end up sitting down looking at the job all over again.  Slow and stead and it came out in stages but I realised that it had been in the ground a long time and the roots were deep, thick and long.  I had the feeling that that this is how a dentist must feel with a canal root filling....

I managed to get the fire started with a few plastic flower pots, leaves and some twigs and once going it didn't let me down.  So eventually I'd got the roots and loaded it on to the bonfire.  I'd looked at the quince and poked around a bit with the pick axe and decided it's a job for another day.  It was at that point that I came in the house, used the Kindle to check emails and FB updates and I could feel the eyelids going southwards and I was out for about and hour and felt really zonked when I woke.  Eventually I went out to check on the bonfire and it had all burnt away so I put some more on and fiddled around with it and it burst into life again.  Now I don't like burning wood but it was riddled with wet and dry rot so on to the fire it went and I've cleared the pile.  I looked after it most of the time....I don't leave fires unattended...but I put the metal lid on it and came in at six to work my magic on the wood burner.  No supper tonight...I managed to fit in cold meat with cold beans and beetroot before nodding off and it should do me until the morning.  

Strictly results tonight...another good one will probably go instead of the one that should.  LN....I'm off to check fires, inside and out...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 21, 2016, 5:43pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 21st November

How exciting last night...the general consensus was that Mr Murray would not win after he had had such a tough time getting to the final.  The Saturday match against the Canadian being one of the nails that would be in the lid.  Well done Andy...the commentators were using their own yardsticks.....Andy has a different one and when the going gets tough...some of us just chugg on to the end with sheer bloody mindedness.  I know that Mum Murray has been driven but to have two of your offsprings at number one in the world...not bad going egh...And then to Strictly...The ones in the dance off shouldn't have been there but out of the choice of two...Greg had to go....and we were all driven to tears.  How can somebody be bottom of the leader board every week and the public just vote to keep him in...but I suppose that's how Trump got there.  Rant over....

Six fifteen start and it was dark as you like or as you don't like.  I remembered that I had to go into the cash point this morning to get enough out to pay my bill at the materials yard but it was a bit of a shock.  Normally the machine allows me to specify the language I want to use...this machine didn't and I had to wade my way through it but eventually I got there.  Straight to pick up the men from Djebel and Bekir sauntered up from the house and Sally's opinion was that he'd had a little too much the night before.  I was assured it wasn't the case so down to the yard, paid the bill, more cement and metal into the Beast and home for nine.  Sally with the cement, Bekir with the metal insert for the corner of the wall and me printing off my boarding passes for my flight to the UK.....it seems to be getting here pretty swiftly.

My bonfire was still going so got rid of some more old roots that were lying around.  I collected some of the stone heaps from around the garden and cleared under the cherry ready for planting the daffodils.  The stones were dumped under the wall near to where I was working yesterday along with the leaves and the soil will go on it tomorrow.....progress.  I also notice that there were some white patches on the ground where the four by four was parked the other day so I took a photo and asked Bekir if he had any idea what it could be.  It looked like something had been marked out so we legged it over the wall and went to look and the peasant that had been driving it had dumped his lunch packaging on the hillside.  No  other rubbish in sight...I'm going to see if I can make out the number...and I might even do something about it....

Unfortunately it's been a coldish damp day...not the sort that I really like but there were no complaints from the men.  I popped into Djebel again this afternoon to get enough money out to pay the men and saw my painter in the supermarket so I told him where the Beast was parked and he was waiting but with a face mask on.  He's got raging flu and didn't want to pass it on...thank goodness.  I dropped him off and the men had really chugged on.  Only a few centimetres to go but they need day light for this bit.  Lots of tamping and inserting some of the stones to fill the gaps since I want the wall pointed up not covered with render.  Men home, fire going but it's been reluctant today and I've put it down to the damp cloying weather.  Not much to go now...I might even get that terrace for Christmas.  LN...Tele time....LN

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Elsa Peters
November 22, 2016, 5:41pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 22nd November

It's been a busy old day.  Five thirty start, coffee and back to bed, dressed and in the Beast for seven thirty and the men were on time.  Bekir appeared from his home and I asked him why he wasn't spending his time in the cafe these mornings...he came back saying that the coffee was rubbish so he's obviously getting better at home.  He came clutching a bag of four Barnsly chops cut from a goat that he'd slaughtered on Sunday and it was all because I'd shown him a photo of how to prepare a Barnsly chop.  They went in the fridge and I knew what I was having for supper,

The rest of the corner pillar has been completed, the wood has been taken from the towers on the side wall, I took some radiator water from Beauty and into a bottle it went so that I could take it down to the garage to check out the antifreeze content.  I'd asked Bekir to checkout the free water supply that I'd queried with the water supplier who shook his shoulders at me.  So all the tools came out, the hosepipe was brought into play, the sleeves were rolled up and eventually the shut off valve was removed which of course allowed the water to pour out but fortunately the hose shoved it on to the hillside.  On inspection the valve was so old and we headed into Djebel to see what we could find.  The lady laughed...she'd see nothing like it and had nothing to supply us with.  On to the garage and the headlight was fixed, the fluid in the bottle was up to standard so nothing needed to be added and on the way back Bekir spotted a pretty little dog that he set his heart on.  We spent ten minutes trying to tempt it down but nothing was doing, back to the watering hole when we got back and it's fixed by threading string round the valve and waiting for it to seal.  Sally has been digging out the little house bedroom terrace, sifting the soil and putting it on the new garden under the wall.  We've all had a lovely day.

I put onion, potatoes, my one parsnip that I'd dug up from the garden and squash in the oven to roast, I took the men home and the goat was cooked when I came back.  Men home by five thirty and me by ten to six.  I fried off two of the chops in butter and oil until they were browned off and straight in to the oven with them in a really hot oven.  They were in there for fifteen minutes and they were the nicest chops that I  think I've ever had...fantastic flavour and I've got two more for tomorrow and the veg were delicious too.  Lucky me and a full tummy deserves rest...LN...Time to get my feet up...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 22, 2016, 5:44pm Report to Moderator

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And a few more pickies

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Elsa Peters
November 23, 2016, 6:13pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 23rd November

Five thirty start and the fire was in but not in if you know what I mean.  There was a glimmer, I put some wood on it and it smouldered and I put it down to the dank weather and no wind.  It even didn't respond to a fire lighter and kindling and it stayed like that until lunchtime more or less.  I went back to bed with coffee and both Kindles needed recharging so I just lay there and watched the dawn coming up.  Thee was a faint glimmer of pink but nothing to bother getting out of bed for to take a photo and washed, dressed and ready for the off by seven thirty five.  I managed to spot the bread magazine on the way so stopped off and got breakfast for me and the troops and as I arrived Sally was just going to his bread van so I shouted that I'd got breakfast which confused the driver no end...He couldn't understand where I'd got it from so Sally had to explain.  

Coffee and breakfast first off, Sally set to digging out the footings for the little house terrace and Bekir was clearing up the wood from the recent constructions and it seemed to be potter time so I suggested that he made me a container out of the boards so that I can get some or most of the daffodils in.  He took to the idea and he made it in quicksticks and I spent part of the afternoon scraping off the old cement from the boards before I apply old engine oil to it or paint that I have knocking around.  I want it to look like the other stuff that sits on the terrace.  Two visitors today...the Librarian arrived on her way to Kardjali and just as she was leaving Mrs D of S arrived so we sat in the sun enjoying coffee.  

I spent the rest of the afternoon planting things that have been hanging around awaiting the wall finishing and it's going to look filled out in the spring.  Not a lot of greenery around at this time of year.  Got the washing in at three before it got damp again...it had dried pretty well and went straight on to the airer in the bathroom.  My bed is made up for winter...I stripped it and washed it this morning and 'the nest' is now in situ.  Fleece bottom sheet and quilt cover...warm and snugly to get in to.

Men home by five thirty and I drove into Djebel to top up the diesel since they decided that they would work tomorrow.  I realised that I was out of potatoes having lobbed the soft ones to the donkey this morning and came back and cooked the two remaining goat chops, chippies and I had them with cold beans and beetroot....heavenly.  So tomorrow more of the same and I'll get the box ready for planting up.  It's going to sit on the main house terrace and get filled with a Christmas tree and daffodil bulbs and it should look very seasonal.  LN...It's relax time...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 23, 2016, 6:16pm Report to Moderator

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And a few more

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Elsa Peters
November 24, 2016, 6:23pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 24th November

Such a busy day with guests that it's not been a day for taking photos...sorry...and so much work has been done.

Five thirty start but after a coffee and a look at the Kindle my eyes headed southwards and it was seven thirty when I awoke second time around which just gave me time to get washed and dressed and head out for the men.  It was white over and down to about minus three...the windscreen was done from the inside though not the outside...that was too much like hard work.  So men ready and waiting and we passed my bread van one stop up from mine and I asked it they wanted breakfast and they didn't.  I legged it down, had a chat with a couple of my neighbours and handed Zelinger a pair or fingerless gloves since she had admired mine.  She was so sweet and asked if they were a present...they just don't assume here.  Back to the men and out with the coffee and that hole outside the little underneath room is getting bigger by the hour.  I spent the morning trying to find some screw on wheels that I'm sure I bought and have obviously put them somewhere really safe and never to be found again.  I decided that a trip into Djebel to get another lot was the quicker and safer option...they'll turn up I'm sure.  They were needed to put on the newly constructed flower box otherwise I'll never be able to move it again.

I bumped into Mrs D of S in Djebel and she was shopping for a wood burner with her neighbour....She was quoted eighty plus leva for one and since I have two lying idle in the little house I suggested that she have one of those and save her money.  They followed me home more or less, I'd managed to clean it up and apparently it's already installed and working...we certainly don't mess around here..it's too cold to think about it for long.  Off they went after a coffee and later that afternoon I discovered Mrs D of S's handbag on the sofa in the lounge so it was a stop off after dropping off the men to return it and any excuse to see the little one again.

So this afternoon Bekir put the wheels on the box and I got some old engine oil and mixed it with some wood preservative and painted the box and it's come out OK.  It needs to be turned over tomorrow and I'll paint some of the mixture on the top of the inside, then I can fill it with soil and plant up the million and one daffodils that need something doing with them.  Emula came round with the spoils of his labours today and was clutching a bottle of beer and one of coke.  He asked for permission to come into the garden which was really sweet...no one else seems to bother....and asked if I could provide three glasses so that he could share the beer with Bekir and Sally.  Since it was twenty to five I saw no harm in it and I still saw Bekir heading up and down the garden with the wheelbarrow so it didn't stop play.

Men home, handbag delivered, fire crackling away, not in to food yet a while....the mood might take me later.  I'm off to Kardjali tomorrow with the Librarian and the men have decided to work since snow is forecast for a couple of days early next week and the temperature is going to drop.  We might be having an enforced drop in productivity. I'm doing some investigation as to whether you can get Filmon on a wifi TV and if not, there's no point in me getting one tomorrow.  Only one pick of the early sun which fortunately came out after lunch and it turned out to be really pleasant until the sun went down.  Starry night so the temperature I'm sure will drop and we should be white over tomorrow.  LN... So tele time for me....LN.

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November 25, 2016, 5:12pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 25th November

Silly night's sleep...I am just too warm in the nest.  I was awake at three thirty and it took me ages to get off again, awake at five thirty more or less and catnapped until seven when I got up, washed and dressed, put the washing away and had to put a spurt on to go for the men.  I was there for eight, it was a very misty morning but not as cold as it had been.  They set to straight away and I made them their first coffee at nine.  The sun was out then in, hidden behind the swirling mist and accordingly the temperature was up and down like a fiddler's elbow.  I'd managed to keep the fire going all night so it was OK in but chilly out and since I was going in to Kardjali I asked Bekir if he would take out the old florescent light that had given up the ghost from under the kitchen worktop so I could find a replacement.  

The Librarian arrived at ten and we set off down the back lane and surprise, surprise, they've re-routed the bottom of the track so that it's straight and not like a dog's hind leg.  If you'd have tried it from the bottom in the dark you'd never have found it.  A big improvement but I think the road is a 'no-no' in the winter...too steep and it will be too slippery.  

First stop was to the electrical shop to get the new tube for the kitchen light and I found a couple of lovely glass lamp shades for eight leva each and ten for the fittings.  Next stop was the Leva shop for goodies for my Christmas gifts for my ladies, the opticians for a replacement for the last lot I broke, the cheapy clothes shop to see what they were giving away and then over to the hospital to visit a friend of the Librarians that's been incarcerated for a few days.  Kaufland for a few top-ups, lunch from the car-park restaurant, over to the Japanski shop as we call it and I bought a pair of thick socks to wear in my wellies and finally to Lidl on the way out of Kardjali.  Where did the day go!

Back to mine via the rough road and the Librarian was on her way with not even time for a coffee.  The men had really chugged on with the digging out of the under room storage space and the new stone and cement wall was two and a half feet high.  Metal had gone in at the base of the original cement column....they really know their stuff.  Bekir fitted the replacement tube for me and they were ready with boots blacked by five and home by twenty past.  We're on phone calls next week...the weather reports are so variant.

I was back home in quicksticks, topped the fire up, shut up the house for the night from the outside elements and am preparing for the weekend.  I have nothing that I have to do but I want to get the new wooden box finished and planted up for the terrace, sort out the new range of mountains that has appeared on what was my flower bed, oil the outside furniture ready to bring in for the winter.  I think we've taken the downstairs room to a level I wasn't expecting with steps going down, drainage, door and concrete floor but it will be a fabulous place for storing 'winter stuff' when the little house is completed.

Lunch out so not ready for anything just yet...time for relaxing and a little television,  I didn't bother buying one today...it looks like Filmon is a no-no so I'll make do with my monitor and the Black Friday in Bulgaria didn't really amount to much in my neck of the woods.  LN...Vivre le Weekend...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 25, 2016, 5:18pm Report to Moderator

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And a few more

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Elsa Peters
November 26, 2016, 5:19pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 26th November

Seven start but I lingered and eventually got out at seven thirty.  The fire was still going so I chirped it up, emptied the ash can and banked it up and it's been going all day.  I dropped Princess and email....it's her husband's birthday so I sent a few squiglies so they can have a drink on me tonight.  

It took until lunchtime this morning for the fog to lift and it seems to be the pattern.  Heavy frost and fog overnight with stunning afternoons but unfortunately I was too busy to get the camera out....well I forgot until sundown and then it was too late for outside shots.  So what have I done today.  I found a packet of bacon in the freezer so it was a bacon and egg sandwich for breakfast which set me up for the day and did a load of washing.  I finished painting the flower chest and it's drying in the yard, I had a good bonfire to get rid of the rubbish that the men have dug out of the little house basement and the empty cement bags, managed to plant up some bulbs that I bought yesterday and moved a couple of shrubs.  Not all of the list completed but getting there.  I brought the washing in and was dreading that it was going to smell of the bonfire but there was such a breeze today that it was OK.  It's now on the airer in the bathroom and since that sits over the pipes to the chimney from the wood burner...I shall be putting it away tomorrow morning fully dried and aired.

Supper went in at five ....spare rib chops with home-made barbecue sauce, roasted potatoes, carrots, onions, parsnips and my only complaint...the parsnips were so woody and most of them were thrown away.  I only bought them yesterday from Kaufland so they're off future lists for the time being.  I'll content myself with my little ones....at least they've had the frost in them now ...small but tasty.

Strictly tonight but before that I'm going to have a bath to ease away the aches and pains of the day...the boiler is on.  Nothing on the agenda for tomorrow but I'm going to measure up the heap of soil under the balcony.  I had an idea that I want to put to the men before they do anymore building work to the right of where they're working now but with snow forecast for next week, I might not be seeing anything of them until it clears....LN...My bath of asses milk awaits...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 27, 2016, 4:44pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 27th November

Six thirty and went back to bed with my coffee, tried reading for a while but put the Kindle away and watched the dawn break.  Not that it broke much...the mist came in thick and fast when the sun came up and it was more or less lunchtime before it lifted and four thirty when it decided to return.  Kept the fire going all night and it was ticking over beautifully after a little of poking and prodding.  Poached egg and boiled ham on toast this morning but not until eight thirty-ish and then it was on to Filmon on the Kindle until I found something worth watching.  Interesting programme about the Pointless presenter charting his television history and his final foray into music and recording.  I'd not heard of him before Pointless...don't know how I missed him.  

So out into the garden...cleared out the bonfire pit and took two wheelbarrows of dust and 'stuff' to the bottom of the garden, took the old metal out and replaced it with the half oil drum but it's not as efficient.  I shall probably go back to the original design and use the barrel as a flower pot...a flaming big one.  I moved the new wooden plant box into situ and the wheels worked,  I know Bekir laughed when I suggested it but it works for me.  Planted up three quarters of the daffodils, some in the tyres, others in large pots that are housed in metal buckets and the rest will go in the box when I managed to line it with polythene and fill it up with soil.

Came in just before five...my house fire had gone out so that was the first job and it's ticking away as we speak, I've settled for a coffee and a chocolate bar...I'll see how I feel later about food.  I might be going into Kardjali tomorrow...it depends if the men decide to work or not.  I have new prescription glasses to pick up and I'll see how long I can keep these for without losing an arm but at least they don't cost and arm and a leg here...not like the UK.  In for the night now...curtains drawn and hatches battened down.  LN...It looks like another cold one...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 28, 2016, 8:57pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 28th November

So seven start this morning and it was a grey old day again.  Bekir phoned at ten past and said that they wouldn't be working...he had work to do at home and with snow forecast for tomorrow they would have two days off.  It was just as well....it rained most of the day ...on and off so I would have been taking them home early and lighter in the pocket.

I rescued the fire and kept it going most of the day.  I was washed and dressed by nine but didn't get my backside into gear until around eleven when I set off for Kardjali.  First stop was glasses and they were ready waiting for me and that was the first fifty leva gone, paid my home phone bill, managed to remember an apple corer for my student from the kitchen gadget shop and then headed for Kaufland for the final thrust for gifts for various people.  That over with I was back to Djebel and picked up a loaf of bread, five minutes with my student's mum and then home to a fire that was still going, a coffee and a sit down.  It had been a busy old day.  I did get my head down for the proverbial forty winks and at five forty headed back to Djebel for supper with the family.

Lovely evening with them but by ten I was beginning to think home time.   The road was fairly flooded in places, the rain is still coming down and the temperature appears to be dropping.   The Beast is in the drive...I don't want any of the speeding idiots skidding off the road into it if it is icy and snow is down by the morning.  Present wrapping tomorrow and card writing...I have a full day ahead of me....LN..If it's white over...I'll post early...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 29, 2016, 4:59pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 29th November

Six thirty start and I was excited to see what the weather was doing and it was ...snowing.  It was very wet on the terraces though so it wasn't really sticking at that point and has been on off all day.  It's on the mountains though so I have something to look at but at last it's covered the garden and it's been coming down now for the last couple of hours and the wind's blowing it all over the place.

So what have I done today.  Breakfast of poached egg on toast, washed up, brought in a load of logs from the workshop where they are really dry so that it would burn brightly and give out lots of heat...and it has.  I did remember to go out and take the bottle brush plant into the little house...it's threatening minus ten tonight so I didn't want any harm to come to it.  I also took in the abelia...it's supposed to be able to withstand 7 on the plant Reichter scale bit I didn't want to risk it.  The rest of the plants look OK and the baby geraniums all see to be flowering....now who'd have thought it.  Cedric is no more...he should have found a little house for the winter...it's just not cricket.  

As for the rest of the day I've been wrapping the presents for my ladies and I'm thinking that I need to get bigger bags for them. I've over-killed this year but they do so much for me in the year.  Now the men are supposed to be working tomorrow but I think that not going to happen.  It's white over now and as I said...really low temperature overnight so they'd need ski gear and ice picks.

Unfortunately none of the supermarkets had the plastic snow shovel...for them it's early and the snow doesn't normally arrive until the middle of December or early January so I'll have to make do with the metal one.  So back to the fire now...I've put a super huge potato in the oven so it's a jacket tonight.  LN...Stay warm everybody in BG...LN

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Elsa Peters
November 30, 2016, 5:36pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 30th November

So it was a five thirty start and topped up the fire, made coffee and it was pitch black outside but no snow was falling.  I tried hard to see the thermometer but gave up in the end...standing with a torch aimed at a little red line encased in a snowing glass tube wasn't working for me and it was too much like hard work to go out and check.  All I know is that it 'looked cold' and that was enough for me.  Back to the nest with the coffee and it realised that it was seven twenty and no phone call from the men so I assumed there that bad weather had stopped play.  They did say Wednesday but with it being many minuses outside I wasn't venturing out anyway and the dark clouds were scudding across the sky even though the lighter clouds above them seemed to be going in the opposite direction.

I got dressed ready to face the day though...I wanted to top up with bread and was hoping that he would make it through.  I was almost giving up at eight twenty but then I heard the horn so it was wellies on, big coat hat and cloves and off I strode all be it gingerly.  The road was treacherous...no snow plough or tractor down it and no grit had been applied.  I mentioned this to the bread man and he said that no one had been down to do the road and it was sheet ice all the way to the main road.  While I was out emptied the ash can and got enough wood in for the day and waited patiently for the added bonus of the central heading to show it's little face but it was very reluctant.  

Read for quite a time today and got my head down for an hour or so....five thirty is quite early to wake up and I appear to be catching up on last week's early morning starts.  Supper went in at four thirty, ready by six thirty and another baked apple followed supper into the oven.  All over and done with.  I didn't wrap any presents today but I did write my cards that I need to send from here...the rest will go from the UK when I get there.  So little bit of teletime....and time to top up the fire....LN...Minus twelve is on the cards for tonight...LN

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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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