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Elsa Peters living a new life in Bulgaria    General Boards    My Diary by Elsa Peters  ›  JANUARY 2017
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Elsa Peters
January 1, 2017, 7:09pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 1st January

Well I managed to see the New Year in with the London fireworks...but on the TV.  I suffered the Robbie Williams concert...oh how he's changed.  I found it amazing how he got the audience to sing most of his songs for him and as for the dancers, prancing around tied into their costumes....at the outrageous price for the tickets....I reckon they were done but as he said...they seemed well on the way and were bound to enjoy it.  First rant of the year over...

Normal seven thirty start, read for a while, crumpets for breakfast knowing that I was out for a carvery later so didn't want to get thoroughly stuffed before the occasion.  It was and still is a horrible day out there....I don't think it's stopped raining all day.  I got photos from home today and they have snow....I suppose ours would have been if the temperature had dropped.  Shall we all blame global warming for the lack of the white stuff.  I lingered in the bath with the Kindle and it survived, ended up in the third bedroom sorting through toy cars that are now going on to another home via either the charity shop or a man who has a market stall.  I suppose if you know about old cars there's money to be made but I don't so I'll have to trust a man who does.  

Ready for the off at just before one.  I'd bought my daughter another present after Christmas from the sales and I wanted to give it to her before I went back.  I found a card and cut out the word 'Christmas' and printed 'everything' on the inside and ordered her to 'stay happy' which she normally is.  So all round soft drinks...what lightweights we are but in some cases it's more down to Mr Plod than anything else.  They've been lots of sightings of roaming law enforcement around Brighton....and rightly so.  So we went to the pub that we were at two weeks ago and boy has this holiday gone quickly.  So over to the buffet.  I went for standard while my lovely daughter, husband and grandson went for large.  I think the difference is only in the quantity of meat and the size of the Yorkshire Pudding.  The rest of the veg are free flow so you can help yourself and we did.  Roast, mashed and chipped, carrots, sprouts, parsnips, peas (two types), stuffing, onions and all the sauces you can imagine and the rule is that what fits on gets eaten.  Most of it went...we cleared our plates, grandson buckled but we reckoned it was down to the chocolate consumed for breakfast.  It's a boy thing....when they get to the age he is....you don't really monitor the intake and expect them to take responsibility for it...

So I have work to do over the next few days.  I have to sort a box and courier out and contents.  It's all piled up ready and we'll see how much fits Cinderella.  No supper for me...stuffed to the gunnels...about to see if I can find anything worth watching on the TV....Filmon seems so uncomplicated what with two remotes to negotiate.  LN...Three hundred and sixty four days of blank canvas left....LN
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Elsa Peters
January 1, 2017, 7:40pm Report to Moderator

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Pickies from today

I forgot to mention...I'm still getting used to the new camera so not many to publish....

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Elsa Peters
January 2, 2017, 10:04pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 2nd January

Don't know what you did last night but I caught 'What we did on our holiday'.  Never heard of it before or seen it but the children's acting was second to none.  Very gentle script and humour with a lovely twist.  Catch it on catch up if you missed it....

Eight start, toast for breakfast and got on the phone to arrange my taxi for Thursday morning for the unearthly hour of four fifteen.  Today has been one of activity.  My suitcase is packed and the box is in the hall with the consignment note waiting for the driver.  Going on to the web to find a carrier for the parcel was daunting.  No one seemed to want to give a quote for carriage and I hate it when it asks you to put in your card details before you know how much they are going to take from you.  Anyway...better than I thought and it's supposed to be delivered within three to four days.  I'll wait and see....it was longer than that last time.

Over to Angela and John's this afternoon.  My host had run some security programs on her computer the last time we were there and it hadn't been the same since.  She couldn't get into her emails at all so bells were ringing for me.  I kept the conversation flowing while he slogged away and played with her five year old grand-daughter who was convinced that I was the real one out of Frozen.  Six thirty and we ordered the takeaway, progress was being made on the computer, the food was delivered at seven fifteen and my first chicken dhansak was underway,  Hot spicy and almost worth staying in the UK for...well almost.  Home for fine fifteen which is the reason that the update is late and not a decent photo to show.  I'd had to use my Sony phone and everything at sixty plus was very blue and blurred and not worth publishing.  Minus two tonight on our way home and I've just checked out the Bulgarian temperatures for Thursday night and it looks to be in the really minus figures...Friday minus eleven and Saturday....minus twenty one....something to look forward to and I better get the home fires burning as soon as I get home to warm the house up and get the extra quilts out.

Sorry no pickies....LN...A book at bedtime for me...LN
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Elsa Peters
January 3, 2017, 8:40pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 2nd January

Sleepless night...it's a pity I wasn't off to the airport this morning I would have made the taxi at four fifteen.  I don't know why except that I fell asleep reading and went into a deep dream sleep that was exceptionally vivid and I could relate it to my host later.  It was to do with his daughter and I don't know why she should have been in my thoughts.  Second wake state was at seven thirty, down for coffee and toast and I headed for what used to be my little study/my son's music room and found out the old photos and newspaper cuttings.  I've lots of my parents, their parents, me growing up, my children and my sister's three and I was going to take some out with me but instead I took photos of them...much easier to carry.  I did find an interesting newspaper article about a horse crashing through the window of my grandmother's fish and chip shop and thrashing around on the floor.  I'm going to put it on FB on the town page and other photos from the area of some of the older citizens on a day out to Wedgwood's pottery factory.  There will probably be several that recognise their mothers or grandmothers having an away day.  My mother is the youngest on the photo...I think she went along to keep the others in line and make sure that they brought everybody home again.  I also found an article about the first headmaster of the grammar school I went to recounting how he was the youngest applicant for the job.  The things you find when you're not really looking.

So today was a clear up way in lots of ways. The new charger unit and two batteries for my new camera arrived so they've been packed already.  The cover for the camera charger point looks a little fragile to me so it will be good to charge up and load with the spares.  I started looking at some of my old books and came across one on astrology telling me how to create a birth chart.  Now me being a lazy so and so decided to see if there was a freeby on the internet that would do it for me without having to use sidereal tables and I found one.  Thirty seconds and four to six hours work was done and now it's just the interpretation.  All the planets in the right houses and telling me which star signs were influencing them...Shimplesss.

Princess was back to work today and came round after work and it was time to spend time with her without any one else present.  We reminisced about people and events from the past and got back on to familiar footing.  I do miss her when I go away....maybe this year.

That's about it for this time....Mrs D of S did message me on FB and suggested that I top up with lots of goodies on the way through Djebel on Thursday.  Apparently the cold snap is longer than the two days that were predicted and the snow much deeper.  Mr D of S is supposedly heading back to Sofia...we'll have to wait and see if that happens.   I might be snowed out...he might be snowed in.  I'm down to the warmth....and then an early night for me,  I'm building up my resistance to tiredness ready for my mammoth especially if there's snow about.  LN..Another book at bedtime...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 4, 2017, 8:10pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 4th January

Seven start again this morning and back to bed with the Kindle.  The pickies that I'd put on FB yesterday caused quite a lot of activity, there were lots of ladies about my age whose mothers, aunties, grannies were captured on film and this hadn't seen the light of day obviously.  I have lots more...in those days it was normal to take photo to record events....I shall have to keep digging.  At least those are out there now and memory joggers for quite a lot of people.

So realising that it's going to be so cold in BG I've revised the list of clothing that I'm actually carrying in person and not in my carry-on.  One more sweater with and extra layer of sleeves since tomorrow's temperature appears to be going to be minus four especially at four fifteen.  I also realised that some of the clothing I was wearing had yet to be packed so it was out with some of the clothes that are staying here and into the case with them.  Silly really...I could have put them in the box that was going to BG and done without them for a few days but I never got round to it.  The courier arrived at about twelve thirty, scanned the box and entered it into his system and away it went.  I did ask him if he could give me an estimate to which he replied that it could be there tomorrow.  Perhaps I should have gone DHL and not EasyJet...

This afternoon has been one of managing to hold my nerve and temper.  My host decided that he wanted to reline the lounge curtains and I was sort of roped in to it much to my chagrin and in my estimation, it's time that they were thrown more than repaired and when the clamps came in from the garage and a huge plank of wood so that we could line things up....maybe not my way of doing things but back to normality soon.  Lovely conversation with my son today though and we've both agreed to keep in touch more.  He's busy with a family and job but again it's all down to discipline and on my part too. Hand written to the children would not go amiss.  Princess has just phoned to wish me a safe journey and she'll be looking out for my blog tomorrow.

Horrible day today....by about lunchtime it was black as you like and now the temperature has dropped.  I'm off for a bath and an early night....three thirty is going to come round quickly and can't keep a taxi waiting.  LN....Fingers crossed for on-time flights and straightforward onward journey....LN
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January 5, 2017, 1:10pm Report to Moderator

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Now if you'd have said when I saw you... I could have helped to put you in a box for DHL!      

Now no sledging until you get home!!
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Elsa Peters
January 5, 2017, 6:04pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 5th January

I'm home, both fires are going and the hot water boiler is on.  It's a little bit chilly with minus five outside but at least all is safely gathered in with the thread of rain or snow at about nine tonight so not long to wait.  I shall be sledging tomorrow Mikey B when I go to fetch more logs in.

So the alarm went at three forty five and did I have a mare setting them on the mobiles.  They hide these in unusual place but eventually one had got a normal alarm and one a chicken and it frightened the life out of me when it went off and I couldn't turn the blasted thing off so the phone was switched off.  Out for the taxi at four ten and he was waiting for me and Gatwick for four forty five.  So why do that change things?  I was travelling only with hand luggage but they've changed the process for scanning your boarding pass and there were several dippy daydreams that were supposed to be helping out passengers but their conversation was obviously more important than my confused expression.  Not an ounce of proactivity between them.  I negotiated that and then they've change the security process.  You lose sight of your luggage and there were two other trays between my toiletries and suitcase and I ended up waiting with boots, toiletries, belt and passport in hand and I hadn't a clue why my suitcase was behind plastic and I couldn't get at it.  One of the guys behind the counter said that he would be with me in a minute and I racked my brains to think what I could have missed and not declared.  As it happened, I didn't have to open it up...another process changed.  So on to departures and I was approached by a lady doing a survey on the changes they've made to the processes...and did I have a field day.  Loading was cleverly approached until the end when it was a free for all.  I was one of the ealier ones to board and had chosen my seat in advance so putting my luggage in the overhead was no problem at all,  As the flight filled up this became more difficult...they'll be charging for hand luggage soon....watch this space...Flight was on time, the captain made up fifteen minutes on the journey and I made the twelve o'clock bus down to Kardjali.  The next bus was waiting and I was in Djebel for four thirty....a record for me.  The Beast was waiting for me outside my student's shop and after stopping off to do some shopping, I was home for five.  

Fires going, the air is cold but to be expected but getting there, boiler is on for a shower, case unpacked, cream profiteroles and coffee made it go with a swing.  No photos again.  I'd packed my camera in my suitcase and it stayed there until I got home.....I'll be back to normal tomorrow I promise.

In summary I've enjoy my time in the UK but my hillside looks just as good as it did.  It was the same as when I'd left it, nothing had changed or moved...everyone left it alone.  LN....I'm off for a shower to warm up the bones...LN
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Elsa Peters
January 6, 2017, 5:20pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 6th January

So I was in bed by eleven last night with my hat on and the fire going strong.  The intention was to keep it going all night and I did.  I was awakened at two thirty this morning by the mother or all thunderstorms.  It was flash and bang without much interruption and it kept going for about an hour or so.  Now I've never known a thunderstorm when it's snowing.  I'd checked last night and it had started raining and the snow must have started but the terrace was glittery as the ice crystals formed before it finally took purchase.  I did notice that there was a light in the yard and I realised that I must have left a door on the Beast partially open so at four I was out there and made sure it was shut properly and the thunder was still knocking about,  I read until six and then went off again eventually coming to at eight thirty.

A quick wash was on the cards, the snow had really started to come down and there wasn't a glimmer of my free central heating so it was on with the layers, another pair of pyjamas on top of the ones that I was wearing, padded trousers, another pair of socks and my alpaca jumper followed by a heavy wool zip up cardigan.  On with the beret, snow gloves, wellies and it was log top up time.  I was down to one in the house so desperate needs result in desperate measures.....so out I went. carrying my trusty log carrier.  Firstly I cleared the snow to the workshop and from the door to the Beast so that I could have a clear run at it.  Three loads in, another load of kindling and small logs for the kitchen wood burner and all is safely gathered in.  It should do me for a couple of days and I got the second log carrier dug out from under more prepared kindling and that ready loaded with big stuff.

I sent a couple of emails with pictures of the snow to my daughter who is now in the process of doing the snow dance.  I've got it...she wants it and I spend the rest of the morning sorting out cables and chargers for phones and cameras.  I didn't bother with breakfast but I did put the chicken wings with potatoes and onions into the oven at about twelve and lunch was ready at one thirty.  I'd added a baked apple with honey, brown sugar and raisins and using the adage of  full tummy requires rest, I spent the afternoon on the sofa in a state of hibernation waking up a six.  Fire duties, everything loaded for this evening and the temperature in the house has risen from nine to fourteen so it's heading in the right direction.

It's still snowing and the wind has got up blowing the snow into drifts.  You can't see where I cleared it but with my trusty snow shovel...it really doesn't take long to do it.  I'm in for the night....sledging tomorrow Mikey B....I might even make it down to the bread van to see my neighbours....I haven't caught sight of anybody since I've been back only the back of the bread van as it was leaving the village this morning.  I'm back to my book....I'm back on the second of the Harry Bosch that I bought in the UK and again the style is reflective of a documented account of collecting evidence to prove his case.  Thirty percent to go....I should be through it tonight.

The fire is calling me...I have work to do.  LN...Time to throw some logs on...LN

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January 6, 2017, 9:08pm Report to Moderator

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In that case I want pictures or it didn't happen  

I see Google is still well and truly out of date....

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Elsa Peters
January 7, 2017, 5:51pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 7th January

That would explain why my son doesn't want to visit Mikey B.  I've had to take the photo off but I'm trying to get it back for comparison.  It screwed up the format of eBlah....   I have posted one that I took earlier so I shall give you the proof and I'll contact Google to let them know that it's time we had an update....

The house is warm...lots of minus last night and tonight is going to be even colder.  I went out this morning and noticed that the snow plough or tractor had in fact been down the road dumping the snow over the drive and making it nigh on impossible to get out even if I'd wanted to but there was no chance of that....Had a bath this morning and lingered for a while.  The bathroom is directly above the wood burner and the pipes to the chimney so it was really toasty in there.  Straight back into double layer of new pyjamas and vest, pyjama top and fleece jumper....I leave nothing to chance.  A couple of poached eggs for breakfast and then it was into the wood store, two wheely bins of logs into the house and enough to keep the little one going with smaller ones...a log for every occasion...big ones, small ones and I bet those of you that know the song will be singing it later...I went out and cleared part of the terrace but it started to snow again so I thought it was wasted effort.

I settled down on the sofa to read for a while and there was a knock at the door.  My painter had arrived, he'd seen the snow and asked for a shovel...he was going to remove it for me.  I invited him in, he was reluctant since he was wearing his boots and I had to tell him a couple of times that it was OK...Eventually he came in and sat down on the sofa and I went into the other room and brought out his Christmas present.  I hadn't seen him before I left...apparently he was working in Momchilgrad and that's why he had been to chop my oversized logs and he obviously felt pretty bad about it.  He guessed what it was....a bottle of Smirnoff so I guess his afternoon was OK.

We went outside and he was interested in the work that the men had done and he was really impressed,  He hadn't seen the terrace or the steps down and approved of the plans.  I got the shovel for him from the workshop and he set to to remove the snow plough droppings.  Why they do it I haven't a clue...the other side of the road is all fields and it wouldn't make a jot of difference if it was dropped there.  We worked together and it took about ten minutes but not that I'm going anywhere.  Off he toddled with his bottle and I settled myself down again.

Not a lot of activity this afternoon.  I did find some curtains out with the intention of putting some up on extending poles to act as a airlock on the big windows.  One curtain is up but I need to get to the workshop to find another rail and the next two can go up.  It's supposed to be minus seventeen tonight...a little chilly.  

Nearly eight my time...I've got the cold chicken wings tonight...I was going to make soup but the afternoon was taken up with other things...and tomorrow is another day.  Other curtains tomorrow...they will do as a temporary measure for this cold snap...A little Filmon and then down to the fire.  LN...I hear the kitchen calling...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 8, 2017, 5:20pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 8th January

Off to bed last night at ten thirty and up at four throwing logs on the two wood burners to keep the home fires burning.  I read for a while and went back off again but was up at seven thirty....I was washed and dressed in quicksticks although the bathroom is toasty...warmest room in the house.  Boot blacked by eight fifteen and I was out by the gate listening out for the bread van.  I had a sliced loaf but it was from Thursday's bake off so fancied an fresh uncut and a sliced for the freezer.  The van was more or less on time but there wasn't anybody out...I haven't seen any of the normal crew since I got back but I hear from the driver that everybody is OK.

The sun was slow to come up and then when it got over the mountains it was still behind cloud and disappeared just as quickly as it had appeared.  I have two thermometers out on the terrace...the one was showing minus five and the other plus ten so they can both be binned.  I took the inside one out and it quickly fell to minus ten...now that was more like it so I came in again and had two very thick slices of the fresh bread with lashings of butter and nothing else on it.  The old loaf I fried in some old fat that I keep in a jar by the cooker....this went out in two dishes to the birds, one on the terrace and the other on Beauty since the robin seems to have adopted the garage.  Out again, drive smoothed out and path to the woodshed cleared and yet again and by this time the sun was breaking though and despite the cold it was a lovely day.  It made more of an attempt this afternoon and really made a name for itself.  Free central heating.

Staked out claim on the sofa with the Kindle this afternoon until sleep overtook me.  At four thirty I headed for the kitchen, fried off a couple of onions and some spicy sausage and had it with mayo, chilli sauce and yet more bread.  Seven my time and I'm heading down to the fire...the temperature dropped rapidly once the sun went down and it's forecast for minus fourteen tonight and more snow.  So back to the Kindle and the next Harry Bosch book....this one has some excitement in it and fifty percent to go. I might find a sewing project for tomorrow...I;ve got four storage boxes that need a makeover....LN..I'll see what the morning brings....LN

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January 9, 2017, 5:26pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 9th January

The sleep of the just last night...seven thirty start, the huge log that I'd put on the fire last night hadn't done its stuff and had gone out but it didn't take long to get everything back into action.  Ash cans first, kettle on, big fire, little fire and everything moving by seven forty. No hanging around here...things happen.  I did glance the thermometer and it was at minus thirteen but it didn't feel that cold but there again I was out and in in quicksticks.  

It was a glum old morning and it's been like that all day.  The weather forecasters call it 'frigid' and I always thought it mean something else.  I made breakfast of spicy sausage, fried bread and egg and sat with a coffee looking at the garden and realised that the food for the birds had gone and there were some thumping big footprints round it and the bowl on the floor.  It could have been an albatross but reckon more likely to be one of the stray dogs....but if they were hungry...you're welcome.  Put the rest of the spicy sausages in with the remains of last nights, chilli powder, kidney beans, tomatoes and tomato paste and into the slow cooker with it to be ready when I am later.  I read for a while, I had plenty of logs in so didn't bust a gut going out to top up and left that until this afternoon but if really caught me out when I did.  I got my trusty log carrier ready, realised that the snow had covered up my path to the wood store so cleared the path with the snow shovel.  I'd gone out without gloves and suddenly I realised that it was really cold out there at three this afternoon.  Quickly into the store, filled up the carrier, into the house with the second one that was already filled and waiting but went back, topped up the second one and that's in the kitchen.  Found my gloves and went out again and cleared the terrace but it's till snowing now so that was probably a waste of time...lightweight exercise though.

As for the rest of the day...got a couple of letters ready to go, finished my filing and got new folders started for this year but what I really want is a shredder...come on Lidl.  I know I burn stuff but it would be more complete...   Listened to my music stored on the pc and there is a distinct lack of pickies tonight but the girl done good yesterday...it's just been a grey snowy day.

Supper was a little heavy on the chilli and plenty left for tomorrow.  Six squares of chocolate and it's rationed...only two bars left and one box that I've just remembered in the lounge....maybe not so rationed.  Princess has just phoned with an update...I do enjoy her phone calls and now it's time for Filmon, Pointless and Eggheads and down to the fire and my book.  Looks like the storage box project is shelved for another day.  LN...Time for tele...LN
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January 10, 2017, 4:15pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 10th January

Five thirty start this morning and I went to the window to check if there was more snow....and there was and it was chucking it down.  I put the outside floodlight on to take the photos, threw another log on the fire to keep it ticking over gently and was surprised that the little one was still in so that got topped up as well.  Kettle on, coffee and then back to bed with the Kindle.  I felt very well rested but I've hardly pushed the boat out with anything likely to consume energy but not a lot you can do.  I read until seven then got my head down again waking at eight thirty and now to really start the day.

More wood on the fire and I didn't have to rush out for more...I'd plenty in store and would do it later.  Poached eggs on toast for breakfast and the next job was to top up the slow cooker and turn in on and it's ready for when I want it.  It's been a reading day.  I've almost knocked off the last of the Bosch books that I bought and I'll have to be looking for something else to keep me out of mischief.  An update on my parcel from the UK...it's been registered as being received in Sofia from Hungary but I think the onward will be slower.  I'm guessing it won't leave until it can have a clear run and there's not much danger of that.

So topped up the log carrier at about quarter after three and had to clear the path yet again.  The wind had got up and there was lots of snow blowing around as well as coming down and there are one or two drifts around the place.  I only cleared the path to the woodshed and round the entrance door....no point in doing the rest...it's still coming down and still blowing around.

I still haven't got started on my project.  I visualise the process but that's as far as it gets...maybe tomorrow.  I'm going to have an early supper after I've been round and closed the curtains putting a layer of insulation between the glass and me.  LN....Food calls....LN

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Elsa Peters
January 11, 2017, 4:12pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 11th January

Seven start and the huge log that I'd put on last night was still glowing but not burning so it was out with the firelighters, on with the tinder and go for it with the matches.  It didn't take long and soon the hot water was pumping round the system.  The little fire was still hanging in there as well so by eight it was all systems go.  I got washed and dressed early...I was down to a two day old loaf so thought I would have that for the birds and get fresh for the house.  I went out...it had stopped snowing so the path to the woodstore was cleared while I was waiting for my man with a van, I cleared to the road but at nine thirty I realised that my man with the van had got lost and wouldn't be making it so I settled for two day old bread with a fried egg for breakfast.

I got in another lot of little starting wood, old wood for the little kitchen petchka and another container of logs for the main burner.  It's all go here.    I had a bonfire to clear the rubbish and started it in the half barrel even though there was snow at the bottom of it but it seemed to get rid of it...let's see what the cats make of it although there haven't been many of them around.  I put some cornflakes out for the robin on top of Beauty and managed to get a shot of him but I don't think he likes cornflakes and is content picking the grubs and insects off the wood in the garage which suits me fine.  I also notice the blackbird making a quick escape from there carrying something fairly large in its beak as it headed over the opposite field.

I finished my book and am now looking for another series or perhaps I'll go back over one of the old ones.  It's been a while since I read the Outlander books.  I went on the internet and checked for my parcel half expecting it to arrive today after it left Sofia last night but it appears to have again landed in Sofia.  He must have turned back when he looked at the weather forecast for the area and it really started to snow heavily around lunchtime again and it's still snowing now.  Winter egh....and we've got another week or so of it.

Internet is up and down hence the early update....curtain ceremony due any minute and I'll get locked up for the night.  It's supposed to have that little ball of warmth in the sky shining tomorrow for part of the day...we might be able to add a little colour to the pickies.  Supper is last night's remains with another can of beans added...this could go on for days.  LN...Posted before it goes down again...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 12, 2017, 4:14pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 12th January

Seven start and by seven thirty both fires were going, coffee was on the go and I'd washed up from the last two days so what next but to go back to bed with the Kindle.  I was on there for about ten minutes, I remembered that I had wanted fresh bread so dressed, out there with the trusty implements clear the snow while I waited for his horn to sound.  So at nine I was still clearing snow and heard something going up the main road and it was the bread van and obviously I'd missed it on its way to the other villages.  I flagged him down, he had bread so I took two from him.  I was a bit unsure when I stopped him...it's a slight incline and I wondered if he'd be able to pull away but he did without any wheel-spin.  He obviously knows his vehicle and is used to stopping and starting in these conditions.

Fresh bread with spread cheese...I'm saving the butter and eking it out until I can get to Kardjali for more,  Emurla came along the road while I was clearing the drive and said that he had been in the house for too long and was off for a walk.  He left and I noticed that Haciber's son was clearing his car by the side of the road so I asked him if he wanted any help clearing the road since he'd only got a small spade.  He refused help and I'd just got back to the drive and Haciber came up to the house, it's the first time that I've seen her since I've been back.  We had a hug and she said that the village had all been ill with flu but were getting over it.  She handed me a present...a pair of purple spotted socks but she took them from under her cardigan....you don't let the others know.

I went indoors and the next thing there is a whistle outside and the only one that does that is Emurla and he asked if he could borrow my snow scoop to go and help the guy that had just refused help from me.  With instruction not to break it, he trotted off and half an hour later he returned it to its resting place.  Apparently the son had to go and get winter tyres on the car...he lives in Sweden and had come back to visit and got caught out with the weather.

I got two lots of wood in....I don't think it's going to be as cold as it has been but it's best to be prepared.  My parcel is still in Sofia and they're probably waiting for the snow to clear before they attempt it again.  It was quite pleasant when the sun showed its face and we had the makings of a thaw.  Snow was falling off the roof and the balconies but there's still lots to go.  

New set of books books and I'm trying to get into the first one.  Twelve in the set so keeping my fingers crossed.  Now back to my book and the fire...LN...Fires to load...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 13, 2017, 4:41pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 13th January

Four a.m.start, coffee back to bed and didn't managed to get back to sleep.  Kept the home fire burning...the little one I didn't bother with...the kitchen was warm enough.  Eventually got out and about but it was pretty lazy after that.  I phoned the Librarian to say happy birthday and catch up from my trip to the UK.  She's also snowed in and not likely to be going anywhere for the next few days.  Toast for breakfast and gave the birds some more of the old loaf....blackies and tits abound in this garden.  

Daily Mail sudoku, FB and emails and I decided to get dressed at ten thirty....lazy being.  First job was to set to on the Beast and remove the foot of snow from the roof and the ice from the bonnet so that I can think about putting the battery charger on it tomorrow.  It was lovely out...almost tropical but with two pairs of gloves on, my hands became really cold as the gloves got soggier.  I used the snow shovel so that I could reach the parts that other couldn't and snapped off the ice scrapper for the windows.  That ice was thick.  I came in after an hour or so...cold tingling hands dictated that I should be in.  The fire was ticking over all day and only really brought it to life at about four this afternoon.  Once I'd thawed out I was out there again.  The terraces were looking soggy so my snow shovel came into its own again and I cleared the snow and dumped it over the edge.  There was a layer of ice that I tried to remove but no go....if the weather is good tomorrow it should dry up but with the snow melting on the roof...it's going to take some time.

Road report from Mrs D of S....she had to go into Djebel today and stated that there were icy patches and the hardest part was getting out of her village.  I think I'm going to have the same problem especially through the forest.  I've ear marked Sunday for my trip to Kardjali....more snow forecast for Monday and Tuesday but I shan't be taking the rough road down the mountain....

Lovely full moon last night but not much chance tonight now that the clouds have rolled in and it's the warmest it's been since I got back.  Not much in the line of food prepared....I've got to go and be adventurous in the kitchen...I think it might be cheese, onion and potato pie.  Enough for now...kitchen then teletime.  LN...It's been a good day....LN

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Elsa Peters
January 14, 2017, 5:28pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 14th January

Seven start again and it's getting to be a habit that I hope stays around for a while.  The big fire hadn't survived but with a firelighter and a little kindling the wood from last night was going big time.  It was really dried out.  I toyed with the idea of having and early bath but there were things that I wanted to do outside so I left that for this afternoon and really lingered over it.

So as to this morning.  I found a packet of bacon in the freezer, fried it off with an egg and slapped it between two slices of bread.  Grabbed another coffee and headed to the PC and logged on to check the overnight postings.  No emails that needed anything urgent but that parcel that is supposedly on it's way now carries the message since I chased them yesterday....delivery as agreed....but I'm not sure who they agreed it with and it certainly wasn't me.  They advertise three to four days....it was picked up on the fourth and still hasn't got here.  I can forgive them the last couple of days but hopefully it should be here on Monday.  I've almost forgotten what is in it....

Out came the battery charger and I connected it up to the Beast and it now fires so Kardjali tomorrow.  I saw Remsier this morning and when she saw me by the Beast she asked if I was on my way to Djebel and I had to say no and I explained that the battery needed charging.  I think she was about to give me a list and I might have to take a trip round my neighbours tomorrow to see if they have any requirements.  Logs in, leg of lamb out of the freezer, terraces and garage entrance cleared of the ice and into the bath and lingered for a couple of hours with the Kindle.  It was just after three when I emerged, lamb into the oven with roast potatoes, fires banked up and Daily Mail sudoku that is yet to be solved.  Battery charger removed and cable and charger returned to the woodstore after I'd checked that it was working and I'm a happy bunny.  First load of washing in since I've been back and I've just heard it ping to say that it's finished and curtains drawn, keys in, washing up done and I'm settled for the night.  Pretty drab weather today...not raining but warm and damp and everything dripping.  I bar of chocolate should finish the day off.  LN...I think I spotted one earlier...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 15, 2017, 5:50pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 15th January

I've had an exceptionally good morning.  Last Thursday morning I looked in the morrow and noticed one of my earrings was missing.  It was one of a pair I bought with money that my mother left me and they;ve always signified my 'mother' to me.  I was devastated.  I searched the bed, stripped the sheets off it, looked in all the clothes I taken off to see if it had caught on anything and zilch.  There was a foot of snow outside, I'd moved loads of it about clearing paths, couldn't exactly say when I'd lost it and since there are screw butterflies on the back, couldn't work out how.  The only thing that came to my head was 'seek and thou shalt find'.  On Friday I was feel that they were earrings, that I could send one off to my jeweller in Lewes who would make a replacement and yet I wouldn't consider them lost until all the snow had melted and then I would take that step.  I went out every morning as the snow receded and checked the new ground and this morning outside the gate I was rewarded....I found it and considering how much ground there was to cover....someone up there was helping me out and a big thank you.

And for the rest of the day.  The car started so I headed into Kardjali and I'd already phoned the Librarian and we agreed to meet on Kaufland car park at eleven.  We did our shopping, left out cars on the park and walked to find a restaurant for lunch so it was pizzas for us, came back to another coffee and cake shop and it was two big cakes and cappuccinos for the pair of us and did I feel stuffed.  Back in the cars and over to Lidl and earlier in the day my student's mum had told me that Lidl had a bargain offer on oranges so I bought four kilo for me and another four for my neighbours to share...they all need their vitamin C the way they're couching and hacking.  Back home for three, unpacked and put away the shopping and delivered the oranges to Haciber first who wasn't at home so I opened the door and slipped them inside, on to Beyser's and again there was nobody at home so left hers on the doorstep and thirdly on to Zelinger's and they were all there.  Zelinger took her oranges and put them into the kitchen so that the others wouldn't see them but I explained that I'd already dropped them at the other's houses so it was OK to talk about them.  I stayed for a while but it's obvious that they're all getting over something and at that Haciber shot up and we all headed home.  I made a joke that she wanted to see if I'd really left oranges at her house and we all giggled at that.  I hadn't been home five minutes and Haciber is round with a return gift of tinned tomato paste and it's labelled with a basic label that I reckon comes in a food parcel to the pensioners.  I'm going to tell her that if she keeps giving me presents for everyone that I give her I'm going to stop....

At last we had a reasonable sunset and the temperature has really dropped.  Fire is going but I think I'm going to light the little one in the kitchen...it keeps the other part of the house warm.  I don't want any supper...I'm still stuffed from lunch.  It's supposed to start snowing around ten tonight but no sign of it so far.  As for my feeling of well being....I keep checking and my earring is still there.  I've yet to find the back for it but I'll keep looking as the snow further recedes unless there are shed loads tomorrow and I'll give up for a while.  LN...Keep smiling on me...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 16, 2017, 5:34pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 16th January

Silly night...I was wide awake at two thirty, read for a while, topped up the fire and eventually got off at about four until seven thirty.  The snow was falling gently and it got up steam and it came down for the rest of the day.  I washed and dressed and headed out to clear the terrace so that I would hear the bread vans horn and didn't so I reckon that I'm on stale bread until tomorrow.  The birds got the rest of the unsliced while I kept the slice for me.

Just before nine I had a phone call in English from DHL asking me for more details of my address.  I explained that there are no more details, I do not have a street name and so I explained exactly where the house was in the village.  Before it was easy but now that the old bus shelter has gone I have to guess the distance from the main square.  She asked me if I spoke Bulgarian since the courier didn't and I said that I think I had enough to accept a delivery.  I spent the morning doing sudoku, reading, got another load of wood in and was trying to do something with the remains of the lamb which was proving to be difficult.  As I was stripping the bone the courier arrived, he dropped the parcel on the bench outside, I asked him if he needed a signature and he said that it wasn't necessary and off he went onto the snow covered road...no plough today so far.  I carried it into the house, unpacked it and was surprised by some of the contents and I'm not sure how the Brighton bus timetable found its way into the box.  All good but unfortunately I'm not able to move them on to their final destination...no way I'm venturing out in this.

I've had a lazy afternoon watching the snooker on Filmon but I did go out and clear the terrace, yard and my exit to the main road...just in case.  It looks like this weather is with us until the end of the week...enough now and the temperature is set to drop again...it's been OK today.  Tomorrow I'm doing something...though not sure what it is yet.  I need to be creative.  LN...I want an undisturbed sleep tonight...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 17, 2017, 5:11pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 17th January

I'd woke up fairly early and put on the outside light to see if it had kept its promise and snowed and it had and it still was.  I threw a log on and went back to bed but didn't linger long....I really needed bread this morning.  To fill in the time so that I didn't miss the van I cleared the terraces and up to the wood store, had a bonfire and heard the snow tractor coming down the road and yes...he dumped a lot of the big stuff in front of the drive.  I soon went out there and cleared the remainer from the grarden and up to the road...I like to be clear just in case there is an emergency and it might not be of my making.  I saw the van outside Remsie's gate so made my way down to the bottom of the village to wait for him to arrive.  I saw Haciber as I was walking down and I just beat her to it.  I had two sliced and one unslice so that I don't have to watch out tomorrow and so that I have enough for the birds that seem to be relying on my donations.  As I walked back I noticed that Haciber's drive was really deep in snow so I went back with my trusty snow shovel and cleared from her door to the road and down to her wood shed.  For my trouble she handed me a bag of potatoes and onions and I stopped off on my way back and moved some of the snow from Beyser's drive and she was insistent at looking in my bag from Haciber and as I was walking back home, they both shouted me and she handed me four eggs.  So my efforts were rewarded.

I filled up my two log carriers and I have plenty in warming for the next few days.  I always like to burn the logs that have been in overnight.  Bit of a lazy day apart from this morning's efforts and it's been spent reading, sleeping as my eyes headed south for a while this afternoon and very little else.  The garden has been full of birds since I've been putting stuff out and at one point I counted six blackbirds at the feeding station and four tits.  The rest of the afternoon was spent cooking.  I'd got a chunk of pork out of the freezer last night so I took two sliced off it for tonight and the rest I cubed and there's a curry in the slow cooker for the next couple of days.  I made a sweet and sour sauce for the slices, peeled three potatoes and made Haselbacks, the pork went into the over until it was time to turn it over, the sauce was added and peas done to finish the meal off.  Really tasty and lychees and cream for afters.  It brought some colour into the day.

Seven my time and time for a little tele....More snow is expected overnight and tomorrow so I might be round the village again in the morning.  LN...Better get an early night...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 18, 2017, 7:01pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 18th January

Three thirty first wake up call, coffee and threw a log on the fire, read for a while and then got my head down until seven thirty.  There seems to be a pattern forming here and not sure if it's to keep the home fires burning.  I did look out and it was chucking it down again and all my work from yesterday clearing everything in sight was undone.  Ah well.

I didn't rush out this morning ....I stripped my bed and got my nest in the washing machine so tonight I have a beautiful clean bed to get in to and I really ought to get the boiler on for a bath so that I'm in a fit state to greet it.  While it was undone I turned the mattress, shook the mattress protector and put a fitted sheet on top of it to save the bottom sheet rucking up so I'll see if that works.  Breakfast of baked beans on toast but that was after I sorted out the feeding station for the birds.  They had apples and bread this morning and some chicken wings that I found lingering at the bottom of the fridge.  The blackies were back as were the tits and that seems to be the only variety I'm attracting at the moment.  

At one I went out to clear the yard, terraces and drive thinking that the plough had been through once and not anticipating that it would come through again.  I came in at three more or less and I'd even gotten down to clear the steps to the new underneath storage room that we've created.  It had more or less stopped snowing, I managed to get one container full of logs in and the I heard it rumbling down the road.  The snow plough was making a second trip and yes, it had blocked the drive again so out with the scoop and again I managed to clear it.  If you leave it and it's a hard frost, it's very difficult to shift that's why I make a point of keeping on top of it.

Made the bed up, finished one and started a new book, put one portion of the curry into the freezer and served up curry and rice at six thirty.  Almost nine my time and I'm heading for the bath tub...and a book at bedtime but making sure that I stay awake I don't want any more floating Kindles.  The terraces are covered again and it's again chucking it down so my work is cut out for tomorrow......LN...Fingers crossed for a restful night....LN

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Elsa Peters
January 19, 2017, 4:02pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 19th January

Well I had my bath, the Kindle survived but I fell asleep in there and woke up at twelve thirty and it was time for bed.  I dried off and got into my layers, threw a final log on the fire and slept through until six thirty this morning.  I did managed to take a photo at that time and was it wild out there.  Chucking it down and the wind was blowing it every which way.

I was still heaving at opening time, I heard the snow plough which heralds the arrival of the bread wagon but I still have provisions so didn't need to venture out.  I did look out of the upstairs guest room at the road though...no traffic and my drive was once again blocked by the fall out from the snow tractor.  I put it on my 'to do' list bur realised that there was not a lot I could or would do about it until it stops snowing.  I'm going no where.

I scrambled three eggs for breakfast and had them on toast finishing off with another slice of toast with apricot jam and it's seen me through for the rest of the day.  I did venture out about twelve to fill up the log container working on the principle of better safe than without dry wood, cleared the path to the wood shed first and through to the door but the wind was blowing straight for the door so I came up with a solution.  I've got some waterproof material that's used for sun blinds and I think I bought it to make something like a ship's sail to cover one of the terraces for shade.  Anyway....it's now folded double and suspended on one of my expandable shower curtain rails about a meter from the door to stop the snow blowing in the porch.  Another brainwave that I'll have to patent or build a proper porch and push the door to the other end of the terrace.  It would make a great place for storing wood when it's like this.

As for the rest of the day....I've kept both fires going, intended to make leak and potato soup but haven't got round to it yet but not really hungry since I've expended very little energy today.  It's not snowing so heavily just now but the forecast is not good for overnight but we're supposed to have sun tomorrow so I better get clearing before it starts thawing.  Guess we'll be testing out the drain holes in the wall.

And now for a little television..and no bath tonight.   LN....I'll do for a few more days....LN

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Elsa Peters
January 20, 2017, 6:15pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 20th January

Silly night again...I went to bed at ten and woke up at twelve and the sleep bug had gone.  I read until two thirty and then managed to get rid of the night until six thirty and then it was in to the day.  I juiced a couple of oranges, one lemon, into a glass with hot water, salt and honey, topped up with hot water and back to bed with the Kindle.  Seven thirty saw me getting washed and dressed, I wanted fresh bread so that I could give the old to the birds and I was out clearing the route to the wood store, a new position for the bird feeding station and the burning of the kitchen rubbish.  I heard the snow tractor heading down the road so I stood by the gate and challenged him to drop his load on my exit to the road.  He saw me, manoeuvred his scoop into the drive, stopped, angled it inot the pile on the right of my drive and scooped it further down the road.  He reversed up, had another shot at it and took even more out for me.....I love him...

Back to the personal clearing...I cleared the terrace, opened up the little house and the wood store and got in the wood for the day for both fires and more tinder.  Out went the curry and rice from the night before last and the stale bread into the feeding bowl and one eager blackie was out already.  The bread wagon didn't come today but the Djebel bus did even though it was late.  I'm not short of bread....I still have one in the freezer so there was no panic.  As for birds, I've acquired a jay who dropped in, took the biggest piece of bread and shot off again.  A very shy bird.

An afternoon of sofa surfing with the Kindle and snoozing, it was on with Filmon and the snooker.  I've just made supper of cheese and potato pie topped with bacon and I've made two so one for another day.  It should be ready in around ten minutes and the Trump monster has really shook up the schedules for today.  Everything seems to have moved channels.  So down for supper I can smell it, it's ready.  LN....I'll let you know how tasty it was...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 21, 2017, 3:46pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 21st January

Another silly night and I was awake at four thirty so it was log on, check on the snowfall and there was no new stuff, a glass of water and then back to bed.  I read for a while and went off again until seven thirty, washed, dressed and out clearing the lounge terrace letting the weather do the rest.  I checked for the bread van and missed it apparently.  I mentioned to Remsier that it hadn't turned up and she said that it had at twenty to nine so not sure where I was when that happened.  

It's been a very lazy day.  I used the rest of the bacon from last night and had it with a fried egg and fried bread.  I topped up the feeding station but they weren't too keep on cornflakes and they're still in the dish.  The jay was hanging around in the tree but I didn't managed to catch it at the trough so to speak...it was far too quick for that.  I finished my book and realise that I've got the books out of sequence so I was on the internet to see where I'd gone wrong so that I get them back in order.  My eyes did head southwards for an hour or so but hopefully not enough to spoil another night.  

It's been a beautiful day...lots of sun but very cold so I walked the estate this afternoon and was amazed by the different animal tracks that there are.  Some are so light on the surface and it would be good to know what they are.  My wellie boot tracks were easy to follow....they went down two feet more or less and to prove it my trousers were wet when i came in.  It's going to be another cold one tonight....there is very little movement on the snow on the road and very little traffic.  I think it might be Monday before I manage to get out but the Beast started first time today.

So now I've settled in to watch the snooker....my favourite Ronnie is battling it out as we speak.  Supper will be what I find and want to cook....the second cheese and onion pie that was going to be put into the freezer never made it...I finished it last night.  Another restful day tomorrow....apart from clearing the remaining terraces in the morning.  LN...Back to the snooker...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 22, 2017, 5:06pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 22nd January

Well this was the first morning that I woke up and the air in the bedroom was cold.  The fire hadn't been going all that well last night and it must have gone out around one so the first job was to clear out the soot from the top of the wood burner and then get the fire lighter into action.  It didn't take long and it was many minuses out last night so I wasn't surprised that there was a chill in the air.  I looked out and the mountains had disappeared...there was freezing fog and I could't see the bottom of the garden.  Coffee, cosied down once the fire was going, washed and dressed for eight and gave up on the bread wagon....it was too cold standing around in anticipation.

I found some mushrooms in the fridge that had in fact frozen so I made a point of adjusting the temperature setting.  I thawed them out, peeled them, fried them off in butter and had them on toast.  I put a couple of slices of bread out with some of the sauce from the sweet and sour pork that I found in the fridge for the birds and added some onions and leeks and made the rest into soup for lunch.  My next job was to separate out some chicken legs that I'd bought on my last trip into Kardjali.  Stupidly I'd left them all in one bag so it was boiling the kettle and angling the hot water to the best position and now I have two lots of two in individual bags and three waiting for some action on my part.  

Two lots of wood in and then the sun came out and the temperature shot up to twenty eight in the house...who needs fires. I grabbed the snow shovel, cleared part of the garden, the little house terrace and the steps down to the under storage and I've a mystery with the water drains.  Both grills were not where they should be but they were iced t the concrete and I left them for another day.

Snooker this afternoon and I'll be ready for the evening session.  I had some of the soup for lunch so no really in the mood for any top-ups...LN...Bath, snooker, top up fire and bed...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 23, 2017, 4:46pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 23rd January

So Ronnie did it last night and I'm not sure which charm school he's attending but he seems to have changed from the bad boy that I first admired from afar.  Not a clean cut game towards the end but he still on cue so to speak.  I banked the fire up overnight...I didn't want to wake up with cold air brushing my face again despite the fact that it was heading into well below last night...no excuse for it to creep inside.  Six thirty and it was just about it so topped it up, back to bed with coffee and was then humming and arhing as to whether I would catch the nine o'clock bus and spend an hour waiting for Mrs D of S in Djebel or get out the Beast and risk it.  If I was going in then I had cards I had to make and get in the post so it was washed dressed, I jumped into several layers since it was a damp, cold and grey day out there, put a load of washing in, had a bonfire and it was still only eight thirty.  Made the cards, red winter boots on, put the snow shovel in the Beast and left at about ten.

I drove really slowly and I realised that I hadn't taken my camera should I have any mishaps but I had remembered my phone.  I set off OK and one of the guys from the village who works in the petrol station started off after me and followed me most of the way to the main road.  It wasn't an easy journey up to that point but it was wacky races on the main road...idiots driving too fast for the conditions, overtaking where they shouldn't and I'd almost forgotten...I'm in BG and that's what they do.  Djebel was heaving and had trouble finding a parking place on the main street so I headed towards the post office with the intention of phoning Mrs D of S from there.  I parked on a side road, went into the post office and she was in there already...she'd managed to get a lift into town.  Happy New Years were said and a general catch-up, I related the saga of the ear-ring while we waited, and waited, and waited for the man who usually takes in the mail to put in an appearance but it was the one lady who appeared to be doing everything.  She called us over to join the main queue and we waited another half hour until our turn came up.  That done I paid my house phone bill, I went to my lev magazine and my lady had managed to find me another stainless steel milk churn which I was overjoyed about.  I told her I wanted to make an outside candle holder out of it and she thought that I was very creative....it's not done yet...tell me that when it's finished.  We walked through the market and towards the supermarket,  We didn't stop for coffee as she'd left the little one with a neighbour and didn't want to be out long.  I went back to the car and back to the post office to get my annual road permit but despite the queue inside, the door was locked and no more were getting in....either that or it was a hostage situation that nobody was taking much notice of.  I drove back to town and over the one of the local garages and managed to get the permit from there.  The guy was determine to speak to me in English and I managed to fill in the gaps in Bulgaria and we got along just fine.  I stopped off at the supermarket and then gingerly started for home.  You don't realise how many hills and valleys there are until you come to drive it in the snow.  The roads in Djebel were disgusting.  The pavements were very icy and the locals were really complaining.  There was no salted grit down and apparently there were lots of complaints.  

So I met one of the really long steady hills coming out of Djebel and was doing fine until I hit some rutted ice...the Beast skittered a little but then it was slow and steady and my next issue was getting back in the drive.  I've cleared most of it as you know so I parked a little below my drive, got out and opened the gates, back into the Beast and tried reversing onto the drive and with all wheels not liking the upward gradient.....I slithered about.  I tried again and decided to carry on to the next village, turn around where the bus turns and approach the drive from the hill down and it worked.  Straight in, parked up, emptied car, fire relit, chicken legs into the oven, early chicken and chippies for supper, book out and head down for an hour or so.  It's supposed to be minus ten tonight so I shall be keeping the home fires burning.  Now that the snooker has finished I shall have to find something else to occupy me....you can only read so many books.  It might be out with the crotchet hook and use up some of the wool I have.

So it looks like the Beast is back in the drive and won't be going out for a while even though it's now legal for the coming year.  I little Filmon....I forgot my camera so no shots today but at least I conquered my fear and managed to drive to Djebel and stock up with sweet nibbles...LN...Logs on and what is there nice to eat....LN

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Elsa Peters
January 24, 2017, 4:38pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 24th January

Another silly night...woke up at one thirty and read until five, slept until seven thirty and have had a rotten day.  It's been cold, dull, I've felt cold and there really wasn't any need.  The fire was going though not well.  I think it's something to do with the lack of wind or the weather...no draught up the chimney.

Breakfast was toast with a new marmalade that I'd got sometime in summer and it had added cinnamon.  All I can say is I wouldn't buy it again.  It's been a mixture or reading, game playing and sleeping.  I didn't get the wood in until two thirty today but once out there I got out the metal spade and chipped the ice from the little house terrace and steps.  I checked out the steps down to the under house storage room and replaced the covers on the drainage pipes.  I was unsure why they'd become displaced so I've put them back to see if they stay where they should be.

Haciber came round this afternoon with a bowl of rice and meat so it must be someone's mevlit.  Her sister was with her and I invited them in but the sister said that she had lots of work to do and I reckon they were round the village delivering their rice.  I handed them the dish back..I'd rinsed it but not thoroughly and mentioned this when I handed it back but it didn't seem to worry either of them.

The camera never came out today...it was dull and I felt the same way.  There is supposed to be snow again overnight and there were a few flakes falling earlier.   LN...Pretty please..a better night tonight...LN
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Elsa Peters
January 25, 2017, 4:14pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 25th January

Much better night...seven thirty start this morning and only one put stop of ten minutes or so.  Perhaps the recipe is two bad night and one good one...I must start keeping a chart.  Fire was still going so I rescued it but didn't bother with the little one...it was cold but not that cold.  I put the thermometer that I'd been using inside, outside and reset it.  It gives minimum, maximum and current and having just checked it out...it apparently reached three degrees and I reckon that must have been when I left the door open this afternoon and it's not dropped lower than the zero but that wind was bleak.

I spent a lot of the morning in bed reading until I was ready for breakfast.  I cooked spicy sausage with a fried egg and it was lashing of coffee all day today and not done a lot.  I designed and printed some new business cards, not that I have a business but whenever I'm asked for my telephone number I can never remember it.  Ask me what numbers I've had in the past and I'm OK with that...I have a mental block of my own...hence the cards.  It's also useful if you have to complain and take things back...leave them a card and there's no excuse.  I've had music going all day today.  I had this urge to play the 'Fiddler on the Roof' CD which was a present from Princess and it normally brings a tear to my eye....but only the one.  I think it goes back to a romance when I was much younger and never played itself out because of religious differences.  'Nuf said'...

No wood to get in today....I seem to have stocked up well yesterday and I've not had the fire roaring away.  Once the house gets warm it sort of stays that way...until it's minus fifteen outside...then it struggles a bit.  I've also got a couple of external drives that I've looked through today.  There are lots of old photos on them of various holidays around the world and I was amazed at some of the pickies of Petra and Ephesus....sometimes we just forget.  I've lit the little wood burner and it soon warms the place up and I've just been to check it out.  There was lots of crackling coming from the kitchen but everything is fine...the house isn't on fire but there's a surge of heat coming up the stairs.  

So nothing on the cards for tomorrow.  I was invited out for supper tonight to my students since I haven't seen them since I've been  back but I said no because of the roads.  It's one thing risking it in the daytime when there's traffic...another at night when there's not much about.  We'll save it for another time.  The third of the chicken legs will go tonight...cold with mayo and it should be enough to see me through.  I do prefer a good breakfast and pick for the rest of the day.  Not much activity these days and don't want to go back to being a chunky waller.  The snow that was predicted never arrived and according to the forecast...we have sun tomorrow...let's wait and see.  LN...Photos, post, supper, bed and book....LN

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Elsa Peters
January 26, 2017, 3:25pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 26th January

It was a good night and a five o'clock start but I had a good book to finish so not a problem with that.  Fire rescued, coffee made and back to bed.  Out by seven thirty, more coffee and since it was cold and cold and more cold, I decided to cook my breakfast early to give my body something to work on.  One spicy sausage sliced and fried and two fried eggs and it did the trick.  I lit the little fire in the kitchen to give the house an extra boost and sat on the sofa reading and I could hear this ping, ping and it was coming from the metal pipes from the wood burner to the chimney and it had just started to snow.  Now the fire was going well and obviously everything was getting a little warm so I fully closed up the wood burner, the pump was going hell for leather and I was getting a little concerned.  Eventually everything calmed down, it was the rubbish on the insides of the pipes pinging off as the pipes expanded so I now had a job to do.  I waited until everything had cooled down, removed the pipes, cleaned them outside, cleaned the burner, put them back and lit the fire again,  Start to finish...twenty minutes but it's a job that you put off...it had been on my mind to do and now it's done.  There wasn't an awful lot of soot but obviously the heat had instigated the outcome.

The snow didn't come to much, I did top up the feeding station for the birds but not had many visitors.  I think they're able to forage so that must be what they've been doing.  The sun eventually came out around two this afternoon but it hasn't melted much.  The outside thermometer has come in again...it felt much colder than the minus three it had recorded and I don't think I've put it in the correct position to give an accurate reading.  It need to be in the shade but if I do that with it I can't see it without going outside to look closely at it....back to the drawing board Cecil....

Early update today, I'm getting a little bit bored now and I'm tired of sudoku and reading even though I've got a good book on the go.  I suppose I could always start making lavender bags...I've got a bucket of seeds from last year....now to drum up the enthusiasm.  I need to attend to the fires...it supposed to be down to minus seventeen overnight...and that's cold.  LN...I have work to do...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 27, 2017, 4:07pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 27th January

So today I am saying happy birthday to my eighteen year old CJ and I've put some money in the 'Bank of Mum' so that he can get what he wants or what he needs.  I messaged him on FB...I've posted his card but it was late getting to the post office because there was no getting out.  They might surprise me though...it could be there...well live in hope as they say.

Five start this morning and despite how hard I tried I couldn't get off again.  It was a cold one and no fire had survived so it was emergency fire lighting but it didn't take too long before the water started galloping through the radiators.  It couldn't have been out long.  Coffee and back to bed but I really couldn't get into the book that is written by the blockbuster I've just finished reading.  The characters had changed and maybe it was one of his earlier ones...not the same bite to it.  It was half past eight when I made my beans on toast, put the food out for the birds and cleaned up the kitchen.  The sky was clear at first light, then a hell of a front came over from Turkey that eventually ran its course and the sun broke through.  It was very slow at first but despite the sun, it didn't warm up very much..the snow is still very crisp and not so even after I made my way down to the bottom of the garden following the animal snow prints.  I think the hare is visiting and something big that puts one foot in front of the other....I should get me a web cam.  Wood in and found a few big ones in the outside heap in the garage that have been brought in to keep the home fires burning.  They'll sit for a couple of days to warm up...they're not damp only cold.

Lay in the sun and had another attempt at the book but managed to find another by the same author with the same characters so settled for than one instead.  Head down by twelve but Haciber was round with a Mevlit chocolate croissant and some chocolate milk drink so that was lunch and it's been pickerty witch for the rest of the day.  Checked the thermometer and the temperature went up to twenty eight in the house today with the sun being on the windows so the fire was allowed to go out but they're both going now....it's going to be another gold one.  

I checked out the road surface and nothing has moved and it's a skating rink out there.  Yes I have got a four wheel drive and I could go out but I'm not really short of anything...just would like a little company and see a few more faces.  I could visit my neighbours but they mainly speak Turkish and that's really hard work...I could manage the Bulgarian but they can't.  So in for a few more days...I didn't get round to the lavender bags and didn't really get round to much at all.  I must try harder tomorrow.  LN...I'll talk to myself later to night...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 28, 2017, 4:14pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 28th January

Seven thirty start and not much to start really.  The fire was hanging in there and got it going again.  Looking at the sky though I knew that it was OK to go out but probably wait until the secondary heating appeared over the hillside which it eventually did.  In the stairwell the temperature had gone down to fifteen overnight but eventually rose slowly and steadily to twenty five and not bade for free.

As I said I didn't do much.  I made coffee and went on to the PC on the top landing and checked FB and emails, the Daily Mail suduko for today has eluded me so I've printed it off to attempt it on paper.  It's a little easier when you can make jottings at the side of the page.  The hunger grubs started nibbling so I went down, sliced and fried off one of the sausages, added an egg to the pan and half of the can of beans from the other day and breakfast was served.  I lay in the sun and carried on with my book, eventually nodded off and spent part of the afternoon chipping away at the ice on the drive and my bit of the road with the metal spade but there was no way to move the majority of it.  Despite the sun it hadn't really got through to the packed ice so I don't hold out much hope of getting out for the next few days.  Another carrier of wood filled and put into the kitchen.  Two year old wood burns really hot so in fact I'm burning less as long as I keep the fire closed up.....more heat for your lev so to speak.  I did move the snow from round the lavender bushes and it's amazing that there is still lots of perfume when you brush by them  I also dug out a couple more bushes that are weighed down with snow but my hands got so cold and I gave it up as a bad joy...I'll leave it to nature.

Closed up for the night, curtains drawn, fires going and a couple of chicken legs are in the oven for tonight's supper.  I was going to do a jacket with them but the potatoes aren't looking so good so I'll cube some with some onions and put them in the oven.  My book's finished so I'm on the lookout for another series...and that stiff talking to to myself may happen tomorrow.  LN...Logs, kitchen and a little Filmon.....LN

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Elsa Peters
January 29, 2017, 6:08pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 29th January

Five thirty start, rescued the fire, freezing fog outside so bed was the best option.  After all it was Sunday...day of rest.  I was out of bed by seven thirty though...I needed bread and didn't want to miss the van this morning and was outside with boots, hat and gloves and listening out him.  After half an hour I got bored, got the camera out and took a few shots but moved into the guest room, took my jacket off and kept watch from the window.  I still didn't here anything and now it was nearing eight thirty and by chance I looked to where the van normally stops and there he was.  I leapt down the stairs , grabbed my money out of my jacket pocket and legged it down hoping that he wouldn't drive off and leave me stranded.  I got there in time and there were a couple of the locals out and I mentioned that I didn't hear his horn to announce his arrival and was told that his horn wasn't working.  One of the ladies said that she'd been waiting since eight...I'll take to looking inside.  She did invite me for coffee but since I hadn't breakfasted yet...that was my priority.  So with fresh bread I made two huge cheese and onion sandwiches which hit the spot.  Bread and walnut oil in the feeding station and its seems to be popular and it amuses me how the blackies tend to dip down and protect their legs from the cold...

The sun came up and the temperature went up in the house and so much so that I let the fire go out.  Not much point in burning it when you don't have to.  I got the book out and read for a while and at twelve was ready for my early siesta and at half past one I was walking the estate, getting in a load of wood, chipping away at the ice again at the top of the drive and tomorrow I'm heading out.  I've had enough of being housebound.

I got the fire going early afternoon, watched the tennis this afternoon and well done to Federa, then caught the bowls final.  Not sure about anything for supper yet...I've put the boiler on and I'm going to soak for an hour or so and see if I need to get creative in the kitchen.  LN....Time to check fire and boiler...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 30, 2017, 4:34pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 30th January

So I woke up this morning and guessed at the time firstly thinking it was between six thirty and seven thirty and then I settled on seven twenty and my biological clock had not let me down.  I checked the clock and I was spot on...result.  No back to bed for me and I wasn't going to bother to keep the fire going.  I intended to head out for the day but I looked at the sky, grey every which way and a very thin layer of snow and I gave it up as a bad job.  I sat down and looked at my shopping list and if the truth be known, there was really not much on it that I couldn't live without and so I threw a log on the fire and realised that my destiny was tied to the house once more...the weather had got the better of me.  I filled up the feeding station and fixed the price at twopence a bag and that's especially for Mrs. D of S.  I check out if she had managed to get out yet or anything in between and after a negative response, I'll have to leave my Santa delivery until the end of the week...again weather permitting.

I put Filmon on, caught Jeremy Kyle and it's been downhill ever since.  I did manage a bacon and egg sandwich for a late breakfast and tuna mayonnaise for a late lunch but the two spare rib chops destined for supper and in the fridge and will come out tomorrow.  It's been a very lazy day.  I did go out check the road surface to see if there was any change but there was very little of a thaw going on.  I managed to get in a load of logs and I've just lit the little on in the kitchen.  Checking the local weather, it's going down to minus nine by tomorrow morning so it's pump up the gas so to speak.  

Another cold night....LN...Battening and stoking...LN

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Elsa Peters
January 31, 2017, 4:15pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 31st January

It's nearly gone...in just a few more hours I'll be in to the very busy birthday month. CJ just caught the end of January, Princess next, my son, mine and my usual guest....that's a lot of cards and so much so that I'm thinking of paying a visit not sending cards.  I've been looking at flights this morning, prices are not bad....I just need to make a decision before the prices soar.

So it was a dull old morning and exactly seven twenty again when I was making my way to the kitchen for the first coffee of the day.  The routine is curtain, fire, kettle, ash can while the kettle boils, made the bed, sit down with the Kindle while the fire takes hold and then wait for the body to require nourishment,  It happened earlier this morning...two poached eggs on toast served up at eight thirty with the second cup of coffee.  When I came to wash up I realised that the water wasn't very hot so into investigation mode.  I headed for the upstairs bathroom to wash and put the washing away and realised that I'd knocked the switch on the boiler hence the luke warm water.  Not much to do...I went out to the road and finished removing the ice from the top of the drive.  Emular was walking down the road and he's asked that I take some photos of the village and post them in the Dushinkovo FB page.  Haciber came along to where we were chewing over the cud and she mentioned that her son has gone back to Sweden, her daughter and sister have gone back to Turkey and she now has her life back together.  I filled up the log containers and now I'm settled in for the night.  So white rabbits for tomorrow but I must admit I haven't seen Harold...only his footprints.  LN..TV and bed...LN

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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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