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Elsa Peters
March 1, 2017, 5:22pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 1st March

So pinch and a punch for the first of the month, white rabbits and because I'm in Bulgaria....Chestita Baba Marta....we welcome grandmother Marta for the start of March.  Today's the day where we give each other woven white and red bands which get tied on the wrist and don't come off until we see the first stork or a new fruit tree in blossom.  I've sent several to the UK to friends and family and I'm sending the rest of you a imaginary band for well being for the rest of the year...

Silly four thirty start, read for a while and tried to go back to sleep but nothing doing so out of bed by seven.  Coffee and then into the shower, washed and dried my hair and was ready for eight to head to the bread van clutching my Baba Marta bands for my ladies. Unfortunately they'd forgotten that it was March the first but Haciber, Zelinger and Byser had theirs first and then one more lady arrived and she had one as well.  I asked the mobile shop owner who happens to be Byser's grandson if he wanted one too so I added one to his collection.  Walked back home and the clouds were really peculiar this morning.  There were stars out at five, gathering clouds at seven, a little rain at seven thirty and dull as ditch water apart from on the mountains where the sun was shining.  

The Librarian arrived at nine thirty, we swapped wrist bands and set off for Haskovo.  I stopped off in Djebel to see my student's mum and again we swapped bands and then into the hardware shop to see my favourite assistant.  Uneventful journey into Haskovo, straight to big hardware shop and straight to the shrubs that were on offer and I filled up the trolley.  There was a female assistant who was determined to speak to us in English and wanted to help us out.  Her level of English was good and when we got to the checkout...there was yet another one that wanted to try us out.  From there we went to the market garden and after a phone call we got the prices reduced...they're not officially open yet.

Into Lidl in Haskovo and picked up ham, French stick and had lunch on the side of the road and I used a lollipop stick to spread the butter on the bread...needs as needs must...I don't carry dangerous weapons in the car.  Home for four and kettle on, quick coffee and the Librarian sett off for home.  I unpacked the car, put the chicken that I'd bought from Lidl and lit the fire.  Chicken was ready for six thirty and I feel thoroughly stuffed.  Post lunch date with Zelinger tomorrow with the rest of the ladies of the village...plants to put in tomorrow and so a busy day.           LN..Time for washing up....LN
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Elsa Peters
March 1, 2017, 6:00pm Report to Moderator

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Pickies for today

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Elsa Peters
March 2, 2017, 5:33pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 2nd March

So it was an early night for me last night and as expected I was awake at six but I blame the rain.  It was pouring down and I thought that we were set for a miserable day and I was surprised how it eventually turned out.  It had stopped by eight thirty, I grabbed myself a bowl of the dreaded concrete muesli with mild and settled down in front of the fire attempting a one to sixteen sixteen square sudoku.  Happily I decided that I wouldn't spend the day worrying myself with trivia so I went out, painted the keys to the workshops with different coloured nail varnish so that having a choice of three would not be a problem in future.  It had got too much for my addled brain and I always picked the wrong one and having them all on the same ring...I always seemed to go for the wrong one twice if you know what I mean.  

I took the camera out and took a photo of the crocus on the little terrace bed and the bulbs that are coming up.  I went down to the little terrace and noticed that the winter flowering jasmine was in flower.  They are so pretty and out before anything else.  The forsythia looks about to burst forth and by now the sun was taking over the sky so everything else was having a boost.  So now what did I get up to for the rest of the day.  I decided to carry on digging out the rubbish from the bottom of the garden and I found the inevitable jam pot lids along with the broken roof tiles and the off cuts from the floor and wall tiles.  Amazing what you find.  At five to twelve I realised that I had to be down the road for a lunch date so it was a quick wash, change and a skip down the road.  Lots of my neighbours were there, a few speak Bulgarian but always Turkish to each other.  I sit there like a bit of a lemon but I love to watch the animation between them.  The food was good, stewed beef, stuffed vine leaves and frothy pancakes with honey, pine resin sauce, figs, roasted pumpkin and fresh yogurt.  Coffee to finish with a slice of gateau and I was home for one thirty.  I topped up the fire and sat with a coffee and my mega hard sudoku, managed to put two numbers in and decided it was less painful moving old brickwork.  So out I went again.   Emula came round and we chatted for ten minutes or so.... I came in at six thirty and I could see where I'd been working...I've had a good day and another couple of days on it should finish it.

Cold chicken and mayo for supper watching Tipping Point but no jackpot counter out tonight.  More garden work in the morning if the weather is good and I might be out to lunch...depends on one or two things.  I'm about to put the boiler on...I'm going to longer in a hot bath tonight to make sure the old bones don't ache.  Lovely moon tonight....we're back to a crescent one.  LN...A very pleasant rewarding day...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 2, 2017, 5:35pm Report to Moderator

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And there's more

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Elsa Peters
March 3, 2017, 5:24pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 3rd March

And what a beautiful and productive day it's been.  Seven ten start and the sun was trying hard to burn off the mist and eventually it succeeded and it turned into a chocolate box morning with mist hanging in the valley and over the road to Greece.  I tried the muesli again and it's the last morning for it.  It sets solid just over the rib cage and gives me gyp.  I'm back to bacon and eggs, beans on toast and the fattening foods.

I was around with the camera and captured my long time friends in the form of teddies that have travelled well and my tortoise that was a present from my son years ago.  Dressed and out to the garden since my lunch date wasn't up to it and is suffering from a cold but it's been rearranged.  I started off clearing under the little house terrace getting rid of the weeds, managed that but didn't finish the big terrace garden.  Instead I removed the cotoneaster that was a cutting from the Polyclinic in Kardjali but it's just too big where it was initially sited.  It's now under the long wall and should do well there.  My next task was to rake over the section of the veg garden dug over yesterday to put the garlic in and it's still waiting.  My brain tripped again and I ended up making a shelving unit out of a pallet for the bottom of the steps leading into the underneath room.  It was out with the old engine oil and it's drying off before I put it at the bottom of the steps.  It's to take all those things that I have to walk into the workshop to fetch such as the secateurs and coated wire for supporting the plants.

I came in at four to enjoy a cup of coffee, settled down to do a sudoku and unfortunately my eyelids went down for an hour or so.  I woke up suitable refreshed, got the fire going and more wood in and then out to the garden again and dug over another couple of beds on the veg garden.  What a day.  More cold chicken tonight...in a lazy mood.  LN...the fire needs attending to...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 4, 2017, 4:40pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 4th March

So it was a six start this morning and I opened the curtains in the bottom bedroom so that I could watch the dawn.  The sky changed to that marvellous predawn blue and orange and I waited for the sun to come up.  It was a calm morning...no wind to speak of and a perfect day for washing but then the wind got up and there was a distinct chill in the air but not a cloud in the sky.  

I was down to the bread van and it wasn't that I wanted bread but Haciber has been bugging me for a photo of the grandchildren's birthday taken in Sweden.  The bread man has it on his phone and despite my efforts on the internet I can't managed to locate it so I gave him my email address and asked him to sent the photo to. me.  Haciber was by my side as I explained the full story so I put my arm round her and gave her a reassuring hug that I was doing my best...honest.  I had a fresh crusty loaf and made ham sandwiches for breakfast...no muesli for me as promised.

I'd done a little in the garden before I headed for the bread van and carried on with the valiant effort and planted a couple more of the shrubs.  I tried to light the bonfire to get rid of the house rubbish but it just wouldn't go.  I'm thinking that I've got to get rid of the barrel and go back to the burning pit...it was much more efficient.  

Came in at eleven  and tackled my nails so that I didn't look as if I'd done an engine change having painted the shelving unit with old engine oil yesterday.  Soaked in washing up liquid, nails cut down to a reasonable level and cleared the dirt and oil from the cuticles.  I found a bottle of Sally Hanson nail restorer and applied a couple of layers and now the resolution to always wear gloves...watch this space.

Over to my other neighbours for  fluffy pancakes, cake, yogurt, macaroni in yogurt and coffee.  More ladies here today than yesterday but more or less the same crowd but this time we had videos taken on mobile phones.  This little bunch use technology more than I do.  So home for two thirty, head down for an hour or so and Haciber was round with a bottle of home made yogurt drink asking if the photo had arrived and I had to say that it hadn't.  I suppose he must be busy.  I lit the fire, got the washing in and put it on the upstairs radiator, tidied my toys away from the garden and now chilling.  Lining up the indoor athletics and then the Voice tonight.....I'm a little bit hooked on it.  It seems like the cold is a little better so we might be out for lunch tomorrow but we'll take a rain check in the morning.  It there's a cold wind it might be off.  No supper...still stuffed from my lunch with my ladies so now back to the athletics.   LN....Another beautiful day...LN  

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Elsa Peters
March 5, 2017, 5:34pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 5th March

Stupid phone went off at five thirty this morning....by the time I got there it had stopped and I was heading back to bed when it started again.  I answer the early morning calls in case there is a problem in the UK but it was some Bulgarian man asking for somewhere in Sofia....No apology but there again didn't expect one.  I didn't managed to get off again and it left me feeling jaded but the day could only get better.

I managed to get the bonfire going eventually and got rid of the rubbish from yesterday.  I was out in the garden for seven and finished weeding the flower beds knowing that I was on a short day today....I was out for lunch.  Cleared away the tools by eleven thirty, washed and changed and into the Beast by twelve twenty and over to Mrs D of S's as arranged.  The little one gets bigger everyday and has come through her cold OK.  We set off for Romantica, my lunch companion settled for a beer while I headed for the water and orange juice and the little one was on the bottle again....cheesy chips and mixed grill but not the world's best...I think we were both disappointed.

It's been a while since I was doing the holding and nursing but it soon came back and she's a poppet.   Coffee and then more coffee at the drop off point, home for five thirty and not a bad day...No pickies today...LN...Too busy baby worshipping....LN
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March 6, 2017, 11:12am Report to Moderator

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Thank you and Chestita Baba Marta to you too! xXx

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Elsa Peters
March 6, 2017, 6:55pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 6th March

You are very welcome Mikey B but it's a shame it didn't get there on time but they're still selling them here so no sweat.I wish you everything it said in the letter..Unfortunately I'm going to have to resize your pickie...it's thrown the formatting out...

Lovely sunrise but it was downhill after that.  I spent the morning in Djebel at the police station with CID but can't discuss much about it but all will be revealed...I'll give them a little time to work on it.  Very friendly office and the head of CID came round with a box of chocolates for no apparent reason and then I had to go in to Kardjali clutching a document that was to be show if anyone asked.  It's a follow on from the incident with the gypsy woman at the end ofl last month.  Lots of to-ing and fro-ing in Kardjali and I have to go back on Friday.  I really would like to do some process flow documents to help them out...left hand, right hand and elbow spring mind.  We had a tremendous downpour in Kardjali and a massive wind sprung out of nowhere but as it died down the rain stopped and it turned into a beautiful blue sky with white fluffy evening.

Back home for five thirty....got the fire going since the temperature has really dropped.  It looks like winter is making a comeback....LN  Chop some more wood someone...that'll be me then...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 7, 2017, 4:51pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 7th March

Six thirty start this morning and the fire was still going so bank it up....get more wood in and keep it going all day.  The temperature has been down again with rain showers most of the day.

I put the news on Filmon this morning and I realised why I never used to watch it in the UK.  I know it's not to be sat in front of because they keep repeating stuff so it went off quicker than it loaded first thing.  Breakfast was poached eggs on toast, the bread was a little stale but I hadn't bothered to go down to the van this morning.  I was busy making cards for international ladies day tomorrow and a couple of gifts and remembering to switch my laminator off....I think the thermostat has gone on it as it gets very hot.  Cheap enough when I bought it and so it's time to look out for the next Lidl specials.

I was reading most of the day and a couple of calls to the UK to sort out a few administration items.  I find some of the call centre people really annoying and you can get from pillar to post but fortunately it was only the once today with another number to phone.  That's the advantage of the new home phone deal...one hundred minutes to the UK and five hundred to any other network in Bulgaria for only six leva a month.  

I didn't bother with lunch...the eggs are sitting hatching in my tummy and I don't think I'm in for supper either.  I've got visitors tomorrow for ladies day and tomorrow at the crack of I'm heading into Djebel to buy flowers for my ladies in the village and a few for my Djebel ladies.  I'm doing lunch with the girls here but it's going to be a cold one....but maybe made a potato salad in the morning.

Settling in for Filmon tonight....I've done too much reading.  I'm starting onIan Banks....Culture series....so good to get my teeth inti something as long as it's not hypnotising and addictive.  I've got too much to do in the garden at the weekend....it's supposed to be drying up.  LN...Happy International ladies day for tomorrow.....LN

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Elsa Peters
March 8, 2017, 4:34pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 8th March

I love the month of March here...we have Baba Marta and day is filled with good wishes to everyone for the rest of the year.  It signifies rebirth of the trees now that winter is supposedly over and then we move on to the 8th March...International Ladies Day but in Bulgaria it is almost like a mother's day in the UK but without the having to go and see mother syndrome...it's flowers for everyone.

I was awake at three, read for a while and then managed to get off until seven.  The fires was still going and since it looked cold and wet out there so I threw on a log and it burst into life.  Quickly washed and dressed, tidied around but left the kitchen until later, out with the hoover, quick swish round downstairs, into the car by eight thirty and off to Djebel.  I parked up and went to one of the many stores selling flowers and selected ten singly wrapped flowers for my ladies, two rather lovely hyacinths for my visitors later in the day, and two pot plants for my students' mums.  Delivered the first one to the shop that she works in and she was very surprised to receive anything, on to the second and handed over her plant and she gave me a beautiful rose.  I also handed one of the wrapped ones to my lady in the hardware shop...can't leave her out.

So down to the supermarket with the shopping list and got everything that I needed for lunch for Mrs D of S and the Librarian and I was home for ten.  I whipped round the village and gave them the flowers, unpacked my shopping and at eleven my first guest arrived closely followed by the second.  We swapped presents and I'd made cards, we sat around baby watching as is our want because she's a little poppet and eventually I made it to the kitchen to start lunch.  Onions fried off with spicy sausage with a hint of chilli flakes, tomatoes, two lots of cheese, beetroot and pickles, cucumber and fresh crusty bread.  We were all on juice since the cars were parked outside and we finished off the lunch with a big fat slice of cream cake...it would have been rude not to.  Normally we go out for lunch but the weather was so rubbish that I thought it better to have the Ladies lunch at my house and we really enjoyed it.  Much more relaxed.  Coffee to follow but by three the little one was getting fractious so it was out with all of them.

I washed up, cranked up the volume of Neil Diamond who'd been playing gently in the background from the ipod, settled myself on the sofa with the Kindle enjoying the quiet after the storm.  Next thing there was a knock on the door and Zelinger is out there with a bag of goodies for me.  I invited her in but she refused...it was pouring down but she was quickly off down the road.  Two minutes later Haciber is at the door with yet more presents...it's almost like Christmas only better...the gifts are so unexpected.  So I wrapped up some cake left over from lunch and handed it to Haciber and two minutes later she was back with a dish of her home-made yogurt.  Their generosity amazes me.

So now it's tele time.  I have enough onions and sausage mix to get myself a super omelette but I might save that for breakfast....too much cake.  LN....I super day...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 9, 2017, 6:23pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 9th March

I was awake at five thirty and I was awake and there was not an ounce of sleep left in me.  I read my new Ian Banks for a while, didn't sink into the book enough to keep at it so I was playing on my DS against myself.  The good thing about that is that you can pack up when you want without losing face...Seven still came around and the fire by this time was burning quite nicely and looking at the rain, damp and the trees blowing around...the fire would be a good place to be.  Topped up the coffee again and decided that breakfast was on the cards.  Yesterday's spicy sausage left over from lunch was put into the frying pan, I whisked up three eggs and made one ginormous omelette.  I also put the remains of the beetroot and tiny pickled onions into the mixture, topped it all off with grated cheese, folded it into a dish and...breakfast was served.

I washed and cleared the kitchen, topped up the log basket and walked the garden.  It was a grim old day.  I did have the feeling that I could get out there and get a few shrubs in but the mood soon went and I stashed myself on the sofa with the Kindle...so back to the book.  I'm getting into it a little more....so I'll stick with it.  I did get my head down until two this afternoon and then I decided that it was going to be a pc afternoon.  I got my old laptop down from the shelf, cleaned up the recycle bin and the temporary files so that it ran better and it managed Filmon very well except that the adverts weren't blocked.  I couldn't be bothered chasing why but there wasn't a lot of activity from the sofa this afternoon.

Eggheads is on now and lack of exercise has dulled the appetite so there'll be nothing for me tonight.  Tomorrow I shall need to fortify myself...up to Kardjali to get my administration completed.  Back to the fire for me and hoping that tomorrow the weather will be better....I don't need a day in the rain.  LN..A rested but not very interesting day...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 10, 2017, 6:06pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 10th March

Fire was still going and I topped it up even though I was going out for the day.  I was tired but awake and again just like yesterday, I couldn't get off again.  Washed and dressed by seven thirty, I didn't bother with breakfast although I probably should have done and headed into Kardjali at eight thirty.  Horrible morning...rainy, drab, misty and very cold.  I stopped off at Kardjali to get a couple of boxes of chocolates...they always help the wheels go round when you are doing documents and are normally well received.  I also bought one of those taps that plug into the electricity and give you hot water.  I thought it would be a good idea for the outside sink on the little house.  If I got Bekir to put in a switch valve I could have hot or cold on the same supply but I could unplug it and take it in for the winter.  Good reduction on them otherwise I wouldn't have bothered.

So first office and document ready waiting for me, eventually found the next office and I've never met such rude people when I found the correct office eventually.  My company card has seen better days and I wanted to renew it...apparently ow you only get a document not a card and despite the fact that it was seven leva and I offered to pay it...she hadn't got the time so I left slagging her off to the security police on the door.  Nice men....Over to the charity shop since it was on the way back and I managed to find a pair of hardly used red leather shoes for five leva.  I walked back to the car park and headed for the second charity shop and bought a duvet cover that's got enough material to cover the outside furniture for the hopefully coming summer.  Over to the final destination and the head of the department was brilliant filling the forms in for me.  I got invited into his office so I could see the web address to check when my document would be ready and he offered me one of the inevitable  chocolates from a large box on his desk so I added to the cache with a box of biscuits.

Home James...I stopped off in Djebel for a chat with my student's mum and bought a fresh chicken from the supermarket and was home for four thirty.  Both fires lit and churning it out in quick sticks, chicken into the oven with roasties, onions and carrots, stuffed some apples to bake and feel thoroughly stuffed.  Everything went down well but it's sitting a little heavy at the moment...I probably need a five mile run to settle it.

Fires need to be sorted and the washing up needs to be done.  There is no magic fairy in this house.  The moon is hiding behind scudding clouds and I'm hoping for a better day tomorrow.  LN...Fire duty and kitchen.....LN

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Elsa Peters
March 11, 2017, 6:39pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 11th March

Slept well but was slow to come round.  I was in one of those recurring dreams that you want to come out of but you don't.  Eventually I opened my eyes, headed for the kitchen, sat looking at the lousy morning and struck a few things off the potential days workload.  In fact I struck quite a lot off...I didn't see the point of going out there in the rain to get the shrubs in.  Fire and breakfast called and I attended to both.  Poached eggs on toast, sat at the table in the stairwell with the next cup of coffee and noticed that there were a couple of woodpeckers hanging around the wild plum tree.  I found the camera and managed to take a few pictures but I had to take them through the window...if I'd have gone out on to the balcony they would have flown.  Some of them were actually through the window and the fly screen so I apologise in advance.

Excitement over I cleaned up the kitchen and took to the sofa with the kindle to check emails and Facebook. I received a phone call from the UK which took up an hour or so and then moved upstairs onto the desktop and attempted the DM Sudoku which is still waiting to be solved.  It's one of those that I shall have to print and tackle slowly probably on the sofa in front of the fire.  Wood in, I settled down on the sofa to read for a while and it was no good....the afternoon was spent in the land of nod.

Today has been a rugby day and well done England..they started up well and got points early on and continued with the pressure.  Obviously the best game and result of the competition...congratulations.  Tonight I shall be watching the Voice but before that it will be a supper of cold chicken and mayo and the boiler is on for a soak in the bath.  Having said that ...I've just looked at the clock and it's just after eight thirty my time...the evening is well on its way to bedtime.  LN...Kitchen, food, bath, TV...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 12, 2017, 5:19pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 12th March

Six o'clock start so it was the usual routines of fire, coffee, ash can, open curtains and I was pleasantly surprised that there was a hint of blue in the sky and it's been reasonable all day.  Unfortunately there was a pretty brisk wind and it was cold.  I'd got enough wood in for the day so didn't have to do the lugging this morning.  Tidies away the washing from last night, washed and dressed and ready to face the day and then wasted an hour on the Sudoku from the last couple of days and they are still unsolved.  I'll have another go later....even though the solution is on the click of a button....it's the challenge.

Popped into Djebel and to my students house and we sat having tea in the garden despite the cold.  They've bought a new bed settee for the lounge and the old one has found itself onto the terrace.  I offered to take it away...like over to mine but they're going to leave it out for the summer but it's going to be wrecked if we have any more rain.  I think they should have stored it in the corridor until the weather gets better. Back home for eleven, the fire needed a little love and attention and the weather drew me outside.  I put my fisherman's smock over my sweater to keep out the wind and planted my two new rose bushes in the hole left in the concrete on the new little house terrace.  I dug it out well to get rid of the builders rubbish first, then took soil from the vegetable patch and dug it in deep.  Walking back I noticed a patch of chives in the lawn so it was out with the trowel and I split up the clump and buried the newbies in the vegetable garden next to the garlic that I'd put in earlier.

In by four thirty, hot cup of coffee and a little time on the Kindle and now it's in for a gentle evening.  It's the second part of 'the Voice' tonight and all twelve contestants will have be selected for the next phase.  It's nice to see talent come through but as to yet I have no favourites.  Nothing on the agenda for tomorrow but things can change overnight.  LN...Cold chicken and mayo on the menu....LN

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March 12, 2017, 5:22pm Report to Moderator

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And a few more

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Elsa Peters
March 13, 2017, 4:39pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 13th March

Four thirty start but I managed to get off again in quicksticks and came to at six thirty.  Felt pretty energetic this morning...got the fire going and by eight I was ready to get going.  I didn't bother with breakfast, I intended getting most of the shrubs in today and had enough bread so didn't have to leg it down the road.  I got the shrubs out to start but then got waylaid by how untidy the logs looked in the garage.  I was running short of the large ones that can just gone on and last forever and I knew there were some lingering under the huge ones so they had to be removed.  Instead of just doing the obvious I decided to get out the axe and chop up some of the really big ones but I don't do it the conventional way.  I get the axe embedded and then wallop it with the club hammer and wait until the wood decides to give up and split.  Not pretty but effective.  I managed to spit enough to manage for the next few days and the 'ready to go' are stacked and easy to get at and all that before ten thirty this morning, swept and cleared the garage and started the bonfire with the debris....

I came in for a while and grabbed a coffee and biscuits for dipping and had a few minutes rest and relaxation before the next onslaught.  I cleared the little house terrace and burnt a couple of old plastic pots and planted the contents of one against the corner of the new wall.  It should restore privacy to the garden from my nearest neighbours.  The rest of the day was spent putting in the shrubs and moving plants around the garden.  I had a huge clump of daisies and now I have several smaller ones scattered around and I've dug up some day lilies from the frog garden and distributed those.  Was I pleased when it started to rain...I could come inside and not feel guilty but I sure ache.....it's been an active day.

So all tools away....I've got some chicken soup on the go and I've added vegetables but that's for tomorrow....Again I've got nothing on the agenda for tomorrow....it could be more gardening now that I'm in the mood if the weather improves...I'll have to wait and see.  LN...Biscuits and tele...rude not to...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 14, 2017, 5:49pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 14th March

Early start but didn't managed to get off again.  Coffee, fire, ash can....all the usual routines....washed up and tidied the kitchen, emptied the household rubbish and got the fire going outside and that should keep the cats out.  Yesterday's bonfire of the old flower pots left very little for them to root in overnight.  Breakfast of beans on toast with the second cup of coffee and got out the Sudoku book and exercised the brain for half an hour or so.  

It wasn't raining but looked as if it was about to any minute.  I cleared the little flower bed on the main terrace...the chickweed had really taken over.  I found a packet to seeds and decided to pot them up and they're watered and sitting in the little house.  I also found some exclusive seed packets and there were a couple of horn of plenty so read the instructions and they're soaking in warm water for the next twenty four hours.  They'll be potted up tomorrow.  I did read up in my flower encyclopaedia and they're supposed to be really poisonous so I better not put them too near the base of the wall for the cows when they pop their heads over looking for something to nibble.

I came in for a coffee and at three went out again having summoned up the courage to tackle the downstairs bedroom garden.  With the new wall going in it's upset the levels and the garden edging had stopped in mid flow.  I searched round the garden and found some good chunks of old stone and it became a challenge to move some of them from the bottom of the garden to the top.  The wheelbarrow came into play, turned on its side, the chunk was manoeuvred into the barrow and I heaved on the other side and managed to get it upright with the stone inside it.Several trips later...I had enough stone and began the challenge.  The job is more or less complete...I have to move more earth until I'm satisfied with the levels...came in just before six and that will be a job for tomorrow.

The chicken soup was tarted up with the remains of the can of baked beans and macaroni.  Delicious and yet more for tomorrow.  The temperature is dropping and we're supposed to be going back into minus figures tonight.  Let's hope it doesn't knock the new buds back.  Rest of the top garden tomorrow and then I'm heading down to do a bit more stone shifting.  All go in my neck of the woods.  LN....I need another soak to ease the muscles...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 15, 2017, 5:10pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 15th March

Seven thirty start this morning and I put it down to the late bath...I got in at nine thirty...promptly fell asleep...kept topping up the water in a half sleep and eventually emerged at twelve thirty.  It's normal for me to go to sleep in the bath.  I remember when I lived at home, my mother always knocking on the bathroom door asking if I was asleep in there and I usually was. I'd washed my hair so it was bed with damp hair but lovely warm pj's from the radiator since the fire was still going.

I didn't bother light the fire today but I'm regretting it now.  It seems to be taking ages for the house to warm through even though it's been going since five.  Poached eggs on toast for breakfast to set me up for the day.  Fascinating today...I've never seen a cat fight and this seemed to develop very quickly.  Firstly I spotted the ginger and white one heading for the burning barrel and in it went eventually emerging when realising that there was nothing there to eat.  Five minutes later I looked out again and this time the ginger male and the little one were sizing each other up and then it kicked off.  I think he was in the mood and she wasn't and at the first encounter there was fur flying.  I stood watching a little longer, another spat, more fur and I didn't want to have blood on my hands so I went out and shouted at them.  Neither took any notice so I headed down the garden and eventually they skedaddled.  They could have their differences in another place...not my garden.

I went out at ten thirty to fill a lidded container with potting compost and was just putting my horn of plenty in when I heard a car pull up outside.  I went to look and it was one of the men from the other village and he was asking about the rubbish metal from my old fence.  He'd asked me about it before and I said that he is welcome to it and so he pulled his trailer down near the well in the little lane, I found the wheelbarrow out for him and basically left him to it after showing him that there was lots more on the hillside.  I offered him coffee at two when I stopped for mine and we sat out at the little table in the yard and drank it together.  Off he set again and by four I don't think he could have got another nail in the trailer and he's coming back on Sunday to clear the metal from my garden and I'll probably pay him for doing it even though he's going to sell the metal....it should pay for his fuel.

So as to my exploits in the garden.  I moved some daffodils that were growing in the lane....I think they were my bulbs any way from before the wall went in.  They're now in the new gardens.  I dug over the garden halfway down the wall and cleared some of the mutilated hedge, shifted lots of soil and raked the lawn over dumping the rubbish at the base of the wall.  Before I do much more, the toilet needs to be demolished and I can bury the debris in the same place....so much to do and so little time.

I came in at five, fire going, supper is left overs from last night but I've added some curry spice to it, Filmon seems to have gone into deep decline with the racing from Cheltenham or wherever it's coming from...out of kilter.  I'm about to go start warming up the soup and feel that it's been a good day today.  We had a brief glimpse of the sun this afternoon but it's raining again now.  Still, good for the garden but please stop it by tomorrow...pretty please.  LN...Seven my time, supper and bed....LN

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Elsa Peters
March 16, 2017, 5:08pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 16th March

Silly early morning start and at four twenty I still couldn't get off again so I was out with the Sudoku book and settled in and knocked a few off.  I made a coffee, lit the fire because I wanted it to be warm for tonight.  It had been a cold old night and I think that's why I didn't sleep well...I was cold watching filmon last night and when I got into bed since the fire had gone out early through neglect.  So tonight the house is warm as the fire's been ticking over all day.

I was out in the garden at seven thirty this morning and settled on clearing the top garden and was good to my word.  I had to get bread today so headed down when I heard the horn going and there were new people down there that I hadn't met before.  I was introduced as a neighbour, the man said that he didn't speak English but I countered it with that most of the ladies did and his eye brows shot up.  This was translated into Turkish for the neighbours that don't even speak Bulgarian and it caused quite a giggle from the girls.  I brought back two loaves and a cheesy bread and had my breakfast walking round the garden.  I was straight back to it, dug most of the patch over, raked it over and took down most of the quince.  It should really be dug out but today wasn't the day.  Once it was raked I found some old grass seed in the workshop so decided to spread it and see what comes up that's if the sparrows leave it alone.  I haven't put any string over it to stop them...they're welcome to it.

I came in for a coffee and managed to get my head down for an hour or so and felt pretty rested after it.  Straight back to it again and ended up clearing the weeds from under the front wall but ran out of steam when it came to clearing it away and dumping the debris down the bottom of the garden.  I've put it on the list for tomorrow along with painting the old windows that I've used as flower borders with the engine oil but this time I shall be wearing gloves.

Supper is going to be a cheese and onion sandwich and I can almost taste it so I better get on and make it.  Another good day in the garden...LN...It's coming together...LN

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March 17, 2017, 4:53pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 17th March

Well half way through this month already but the signs of spring are slow.   We need a few more days of sun.

It was a seven thirty start today and thank you fire for prolonging it...I swear it has something to do with it.  I had a bit of a shock though, as I staggered towards the kitchen I checked out my wall clock and it said twenty to ten which I had to think about.  Fortunately my wrist watch was sitting on the table underneath the clock and that gave me the correct time.  So down it came from the wall, into the kitchen and down with the olive pot from the shelf and where else would you keep spare A4's.  I inserted the said battery and my life was back on schedule and it's still going now.  Coffee, cleared the kitchen and the rest of the curry stuff was thrown over the hillside for the dogs, cats or whatever and I suddenly had a yearning for a bacon sandwich.  I got the bacon out of the freezer, thawed it out, left it on the work surface and it was another hour before I got round to making breakfast.  I got on to the computer upstairs for emails and FB and played a few games, down to the kitchen and what was going to be a bacon sandwich turned into bacon, egg and fried bread and it set me up for the day.

I eventually got washed and dressed and headed out with the wheelbarrow  and spade and started working on dropping the level of the patch by the walnut and using some of the soil to fill up where I'd stopped a couple of days ago.  I've still got some rubble that needs to find its way to the base of the wall so the infill will be done in stages.  My outside toilet is half down so that needs to be completely demolished and one shove would do it but I'll leave it to the experts.  I have other heaps of stone chippings and bits of tiles and bricks that I need to barrow over but I was more in the mood for digging today.  The original plans to get out the paint brush were aborted...it was raining this morning so it was on to plan B which is always the one initiated when plan A can't be achieved...

I came in for a coffee after a couple of hours or so and sat in the sun by the table in the stair well.  The next event  was two of my neighbours coming round with stuffed croissants and a chocolate milky drink.  Apparently it's the anniversary of someone's husband and as is the norm...feed the village.  Mine have gone...thank you an afternoon snack but the sell by date is some time in June....makes me wonder what's really in them.  

I went out again to carry on where I'd left off and after three barrow loads it started to rain and was I pleased.  It was tools away in quicksticks and back to the house banking up the fire and bringing it to life again.  It didn't last long though but I just couldn't drum up any enthusiasm to get out there again so I didn't.  Bit of a pink tinged sky tonight and it's supposed to be a better day tomorrow so I'm off out with my ladies that lunch and the baby who's going to have far more attention than is good for her and a taste of cheesy chips....or a slice of cucumber and I'm guessing which one she'll prefer.  Enough ramblings...I'm not even thinking about supper yet..the croissants are still lingering somewhere near the middle of the chest.  LN...I need a coffee to sluice them down...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 18, 2017, 10:50pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 18th March

Early morning start and there was pink in them there clouds.  Only managed toast for breakfast with lashings of apricot jam knowing that I was out for lunch.  I'd got a couple of hours to kill before they arrived so I went out into the garden and got rid of the weeds along the long wall...they were very thick but I found plants that I'd forgotten about and they're budding nicely.  My dark purple hydrangea has loads of buds on it and despite the fact that it was a supermarket find...it's doing them proud.

Guests arrived at just after eleven and rooted me out of the garden.  I got the coffee on since it was a little early to set off for lunch but not for one little sweetie.  Mr's D of S offered to drive us over to the Makaza Hotel on the outskirts of Momchilgrad and the place was in full swing with several children's birthday parties taking place but it wasn't too obvious since the room's large and can cope with it.  Cheesy chips, salad and pizza.  I ordered a calzone thinking that it was going to be like the ones in Italian restaurants...wrong it was a flat based one but I managed to get through it ...eventually where as the others took doggy bags home with them for later.  I've not had anything for supper though so I've had mine in one sitting not two.

The little one was a little fractious...I think she's had a couple of busy days so we didn't linger long over coffee.  We were home for just before three so I went in and they went on their way.  It didn't seem like a Saturday...we normally do our socialising in the week or on a Sunday and I suddenly remembered that we were in for an afternoon of rugby so that's what I did.  I ggt so engrossed that I forgot all about my update and then settled in for the Voice and it's just finished now.  

Rain is forecast for tomorrow so I'll probably be helping the man with the metal collection so that it's done and dusted.  I don't want him to be out there all day at his pace.  Nothing else on the agenda....LN...and now to bed said sleepy head...LN

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March 19, 2017, 5:04pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 19th March

Couldn't get off to sleep last night and I was playing silly games at two thirty and unable to catch up...my internal alarm kicked in at seven ten so up about to face the world.  I was expecting my metal man today but maybe he was put off by the weather forecast stating that it was going to be raining most of the day but no such luck....and he didn't turn up.  We had a brief shower this morning and then it's been good for the rest of the day.  At one point the sweater came off disclosing that I'd put it over my pyjama top and since it has the word Moo embroidered on it...it felt very agricultural.  Toast for breakfast with a hint of Vegemite and thank you to my cousin in Australia for sending it over....and then out and at it.  

I cleared up the bank by the falling down toilet and raked it over dumping the debris at the base of the new wall.  The bottom of the garden before the wall went in was looking OK with a few shrubs and flowers but it had really gone to pot.  Stone had been dumped round an old rose and a sloe bush and there were a couple of miniature pear trees down there but it was going to take drastic measures to make anything of it...so I made a start.  The old rose and the sloe bush have been cut to the ground, one of the pears has been removed and the other neatened up.  I've released a spiraea and a baby fir from the weeds and also dug round the medlar tree and then it was a matter of digging over where I could and clearing the stone and old tiles from the soil.  It was my builder's dumping area.  So I can see the wood for the trees and I can almost see the finished article.  I don't make a plan because then you have to stick to it....much more fun my way.  

So a couple of sausages with onions and potatoes are in the oven and something is smelling good down there.  Seven my time and I'm feeling knacked...it might be on with the boiler and a two hour soak tonight to ease the aching limbs....About another three days on the garden and it should be knocked into shape....and then it might be time to tackle the lawn....out with my trusty lawn mower but I suppose I better think about giving it a service first....always work for the wicked.  LN...those sausages are requiring my attention...LN

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Monday 20th March

The sleep of the just last night…straight through from eleven to seven twenty which for me is sheer bliss.  Made a coffee, sat by the table in the stairwell, drank that and went back for a second cup which is unusual.  I normally let the first one go cold and then it top-up all day.  I swear I only have one cup…

Breakfast was a cold sausage and then it was dressed and ready just in case my Metal Mickey decided to turn up with his hot rod and trailer but unfortunately not today.  I had the third cup of coffee walking the garden looking for tender green shoots on the new shrubs and I wasn’t disappointed.  They are doing well.  

Three loads of washing done today…I stripped the bed and am looking forward to getting into a fresh bed tonight. I wasn’t in the mood for earth shifting today so instead I sorted out seeds and beetroot and bean seeds are in…three rows of each.  The rest of the day has been taken up with removing the old flower pots, cleaning them up, checking out what’s survived and there aren’t many casualties.  I’ve got lots of baby geraniums that need to be moved on to something bigger but several of the ‘twigs’ that I stuck into any pot that was going have buds on them already.  I’ll have to wait until they burst forth to see what I managed to propagate.  

Noisy afternoon…I think the lambs have had their first outing and they were frantically searching for their mothers.  I spotted a couple that really made me smile…..completely black apart from white tails.  The sheep dog was on patrol and one of the little ones look like he could have fathered it.  The rest of the afternoon was spent sorting out my PC that was continuously blue screening and I reckon it was down of one of the updates that was sent down.  I've restored it to the last available date and fingers crossed...it seems to be OK.

Closing up for the night and I heard Metal Mickey’s car heading up the road and watched it go by the gate.  I think it has something to do with the spoiler on the back.  I caught him on the way back and apparently he came round on Saturday where I was expecting him on Sunday so we’ve made a new date.  I really need to see the back of the metal littering the garden.  As he came to drive off though it took him several attempts to get it going…me thinks he needs a new battery.  

So supper is not on the cards…lunch was a very large cheese and onion sandwich and that will suffice until morning.  The fire is going but needs attention,  LN…Coffee needs topping up…LN

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Elsa Peters
March 21, 2017, 6:13pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 21st March

Again a really good night's sleep and it was the sun that woke me up.  It was already up at six thirty which surprised me....and when the clock goes back this weekend....it will be a five thirty start...

Coffee, no fire I reckoned it wouldn't be needed today.  I went out and took photos of the morning and realised that it was a little nippy out there so soon came in and went for the second cup.  I sat and watched the morning and struggled into clothing by eight thirty and headed out to walk the garden.  Today was one of those days that I wasn't sure what to do.  I got a washing load out, swept through the ground floor and generally tidied round, cooked an omelette for breakfast, ended up potting up some seeds, repotting the jasmine and clearing out the remaining pots.  I'd looked at the window frames that I'm using as flower surrounds in the garden and decided that they needed a coating of old engine oil so that was my next task.  It didn't stop there, I did round the vegetable patch and on the third I heard a car pull up so headed up to the terrace to check who was out there.  I vaguely recognised the two men...it was the chief of police from Djebel and the local police man who I'd dealt with a couple of weeks ago when I had an incident with a gypsy.  I'd got rubber gloves on covered with the old engine oil so I peeled them off and we shook hands.  He'd obviously heard that I'd renovated the house and had come to look.  He walked the top terrace and looked down the garden and commented how beautiful the view was, I offered them coffe which they refused, we chatted for a while and then they left.  I was really surprised by the visit.

So back to it and finished the vegetable patch surround and by this time, time was ticking on.  Came in at four, my next visitor was my painter who had finished work in Djebel.  He's working on the apartment blocks being insulated and has another four days work before he starts his next lot.  We've made temporary arrangements to go into Kardjali on Friday if he doesn't have work....it's been a while since we did a trip together.  Supper of spare rib pork chops with barbecue sauce topping and now on to Eggheads.  Tomorrow night I'm out for supper at my students and tomorrow will be more of the same if the weather is good.  LN...What an exciting life...LN

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Elsa Peters
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Wednesday 22nd March

Six fifteen start this morning and I sat out with my coffee on the terrace waiting for my central heating to come up.  It was a bit on the chill side but a very fresh morning...the air's so pure around here until I start my bonfire going...

Got dressed and went out into the garden.  My neighbour came round and inspected the estate to see what she could take of the plant variety but I've not got much that's ready.  She's earmarked Forsythia and I did give her a bag of lavender from my cache upstairs and told her to make it into a sleep aid for her mother who's pretty fragile,  I showed her the one that I've got as a pattern but I hadn't got one already made to give her.  Maybe that's a new item on the list.  Off to the bread van for bread and unfortunately I came back with a box of biscuits that are no more.  I find it very difficult to meter them out...it becomes a case of...'just one more' and then there's no more,

I played around with the seeds after demolishing half a loaf with butter and apricot jam sitting in the sun,  By twelve I was feeling jaded so lay on the sofa and got my head down along with the rest of me for an hour or so.  Out with another coffee and decided that the rest of the plants that I got from Haskovo had to go in and headed down the bottom of the garden with four of them.  Unfortunately I got sidetracked and have managed to  level off more of the garden and clear some of the rubbish.....I can now see where I'm going with it...I have a plan inside.  Spent a good half an hour watching the stork.  I saw it arrive and it kindly stood around waiting for me to get the camera.  It was quite a long way away so bear with me....but it means that the martinitsa can definitely come off and get hung around the garden.  It did move on to the next pond and I managed to spot it but I had to call it a day....I wanted to catch it in flight but need to get ready...I'm out to supper tonight.  LN...Wash, decent clothes and away...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 23, 2017, 4:41pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 23rd March

Five o'clock start and one of those silly dreams that you can't get out of until you open your eyes and start the day/  I beat the sun this morning...in fact beat everything...Lovely crescent moon but the camera didn't want to know.  I tried to snuggle down again after my coffee but got going with Candy Crush and managed to find the bears and chew all the chewing gum.  I'm pretty disciplined though...I don't buy any more time so I'm not a very good customer for them.

Seven o'clock came round quickly and I was washed dressed, breakfasted and the kitchen tidied by eight so a complete blank canvas and didn't know what to do first.  I'd been looking at the pots and there were some baby geraniums that needed potting up for the main terrace so they're now done.  I gave them all a good drink, put the orange and lemon plants into new pots with new compost and trimmed them up.  There's lots of new growth on them but they were straggly.  My next task was to find some wood, grab the saw, hammer and nails and I made a trug for the colourful pots that I bought last year and much to the amusement of my ladies.  They only have to see me with that sort of equipment and I reckon that there is a male side to me.  I laughed with them and said that I only have the same equipment as they have and they carried on, on their walk.

I came in at twelve and had a little rest and the eyes were heading southwards but never quite made it.  I was out again and forced myself to get digging down the bottom of the garden to get it levelled up.  The mood lasted until five so I came in, lit the fire, emptied the Canon of the photos since the card was full and put some pork chops in the oven for supper.

Lovely weather today again...not so hot as yesterday, the wind was chill but there again...it's still only March.  Supper's ready...kitchen calls...LN....I've worked up an appetite...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 24, 2017, 5:28pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 24th March

Absolutely stupid night...I was awake at two thirty, read until five, sleep until six fifteen and a member of the wide awake club after that.  And no reason in my book for it to be that way.  The upside is that the washing was out on the line for seven thirty, I was showered and shampooed and hair dried, breakfasted by eight so I telephoned my painter to see if he was wanting to go into Kardjali or not.  I think he was asleep when I phoned but said that he had work to do so would not be joining me and thanked me for remembering.  So just before that I'd had a message from Mrs D of S to see if I wanted anything from Djebel, she was prepared to get it and bring it round if I was having problems dragging myself away from my gardening...Yes...and some.  I told her that I had to go into Kardjali to pick up my new driving licence and cash point card but that we could meet in Djebel for a coffee but instead she asked if she could tag along into Kardjali with me and I jumped at the chance of being out with the little one again.

So list made, Haciber asked me if I could get her some washing powder so it was added to my list and the day went like clockwork.  There was a queue at Kat where I had to pick up my licence but the assistant spotted me, my documents were produced and I was called to the front of the queue.  Two packets of biscuits on my last tirp worked well.  Over to the bank and the same treatment, down to Kaufland and we just happened to bump into the Librarian at the cash desk.  I joined the queue behind her and jostled her trolley, she pushed back but didn't look up so I did it again and she was about to let fly when she saw it was me...so we both had a little giggle.  All shopping away and over to the pizza shop for lunch and then the cake shop for afters, dropped her at her car and met up again in Lidl to finish the shopping.  Back to Djebel, swapped the luggage over and I was home for about four.  Washing in, shopping away, I delivered the washing powder but Haciber was on a visit so I went home and lay on the sofa in the sun and was about to nod off and she was there with the money and a packed of biscuits from Turkey.  

Washing away, lit the fire, no supper for me I'm stuffed to the gills from the pizza and the big fat chocolate cake that followed it.  Metal Mickey is here tomorrow and that will be one more thing off my mind.  Just a few pickies of the morning and evening...too busy with baby in between.  LN...Hoping for a better night...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 25, 2017, 3:44pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 25th March

Six start this morning and dark as you like out thee.  I made coffee and went back to bed...nothing to get up for this early soplayed on the Kindle and read for a while.  Out of bed by seven, washed, dressed, breakfasted on French stick with ham while I went out to the garden.  My neighbours are back from Turkey for a few days and I saw them digging for victory at the bottom of their huge garden.  I checked out the new shrubs and they appear to be coming on in leaps and bounds, back in for a top up on the coffee stakes and another chunk of French stick.  

I got the strimmer out of the tool shed and checked both batteries which appear still to be charged from last year.  There are clumps of grass growing under the front wall and there's not enough for the lawn mower so the strimmer will cope with it and did.  My neighbour saw me out there and asked me what I was doing so I explained and she proudly told me that she'd planted up potatoes, peppers, tomatoes and beans which I'm thinking is a little early for the tomatoes and peppers but she's local and should know best.

So this morning I'm expecting Metal Mickey and he didn't let me down.  He arrived with his Lada, we shook hands and then he was straight for the wheelbarrow and down to business.  After the first load Haciber appeared and said that she had some old fencing if he was interested and he certainly was so my job was put on hold while he went over the road with my wheelbarrow to do the deed.  I was concerned that there wouldn't be enough space for mine...but he managed somehow.  My painter walked by with his wife and we had a few words and he went on his way and another neighbour came round to talk with Mickey.  It seems he's a popular sort of chap.  Any way...mine all finished by eleven fifteen and I cleared the leaves from the oak tree that had been lodged between the metal heap and dumped them down the bottom of the garden.  I shoved a few chunks of stone around, came back and had a bonfire with some plastic that had also been trapped and generally played around for a couple of hours with the strimmer.

Into the house for a coffee, lay on the sofa and it was eyes southwards for an hour or so and I woke up cold so lit the fire.  I went out to shut up shop, tidy the tools away and do a final bit of strimming and suddenly the wind got up to gale force so it was down tools, got the log carrier loaded and wheeled it in to the house and then the heavens opened but at least the wind has died down.

So another job ticked off...the metal has gone and it's back to construction when the men decided to appear again.  I've just got the old wood that has been dumped at the bottom of the garden to sort...it's good enough to use for pot covers or garden seats so a new saw is required and some nails and I might even run to screws.  I like parking benches so that if I feel that I want to have five minutes to take in the view...there's somewhere to rest my weary bones.  

Now the sun's just come out so I'm going to look for a rainbow...just a hint of one but not worth getting the spade out for and heading over the hillside.  LN....Almost relax time...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 26, 2017, 4:07pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 26th March

So I put the clocks forward last night so that I wouldn't forget but it seems that the rest of the day has gone like clockwork.  Happy Mother's Day to my own mother even though she's not with me physically anymore, my daughter and daughter in law and those I've adopted on the way.  I could name a few but won't...Hope you've all been spoilt rotten.  I had phone calls, cards that will eventually arrive since it's Bulgarian postal system and surprise messages on FB.  Thank you everyone of you.

So a real pea souper to wake up to and it seemed to get thicker as the day wore on.  I took my coffee out, chatted to my neighbour and she was back to Turkey today leaving her veg to grow unattended.  I checked out my little garden and my garlic have just pushed up their first stalks, the beans and beetroot are being lazy but the chives are doing well.  I walked down to the bottom of the garden and could hardly see the house but as I walked back I saw a strange bird sitting on the house ridge.  I went inside and got the camera and took a few shots from the yard but then went out on to the balcony and managed to get some better ones.  I reckon he was asleep at first, roused himself and then took to the wing once more.  Looks like a pigeon to me but not the normal sort...perhaps just needed a rest.

First task this morning was to plant up the forsythia I'd dug up yesterday from the little house garden.  It had never looked happy there being planted on the old soot heap and where some seem to like it...it never had.  It was reluctantly flowering but I've moved it to the base of the front and new side wall and put some good compost in the hole.  Now let's see what it does...  Off down the bottom with the spade and I was determined to get more of the digging and levelling done.  I worked up quite a steam but then it started to cloud over and the wind got up so I came in and started looking at holidays on the internet.  It had now got to about one thirty and even though it was early to light the fire, I lit it anyway and not long after there was a very deep rumbling of thunder, the wind got up to gale force and the heavens opened.  Huge hailstones, very intense thunder so I came off the internet and took to my book for a couple of hours.  It seemed to rattle around for ages, the spade is still abandoned at the bottom of the garden but I did managed to lock up before it really started.

Again I would ask where the day has gone....it's seven my time and there's not much that's been achieved today that could be set in stone.  LN...Kitchen for supper, fire for warmth and Filmon for company....LN    

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Elsa Peters
March 27, 2017, 5:08pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 27th March

Seven o'clock start and that hour has really made a difference.  My biological clock has failed to catch up and I seem to have been paying for it all day.  The weather didn't help...it wasn't raining but very close to it.  I looked out at the garden and pledged that I would finish the digging today but I went out and that wind was biting cold so I took back the pledge...there is no rush only what I self impose.  Better weather will come...just not today.  Having said that, the sun did come out this afternoon but the temperature didn't go up by much and the wind didn't drop....so I stayed in.

Breakfast of two poached with ham on toast and that's been it so far for the day.  I haven't used much energy...I've been reading most of the day...or trying to at least.  I'm reading Ian Banks and I'm still not sure why at the moment.  I can't seem to get into the characters and it may take some time.  This afternoon I watched 'Who do you think you are' which I find an intriguing programme.  It makes me more interested in chasing back especially on my father's side of the family...my mother's has already been done by my cousin's daughter in Australia...I think it's down to me investing in paying for internet access to the census material.

So it's gardening tomorrow if the weather picks up otherwise I think I might have a trip to Kardjali....there are a few things that I didn't get on the last shopping trip that require some leg work.  No fire ...the sun has raised the temperature in the house enough for comfort.  No pictures...it's been a lay on the sofa and recoup strength day.  LN...Now kitchen for inspiration....LN
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Elsa Peters
March 28, 2017, 5:17pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 28th March

So I learnt my lesson from last night...the fire is going already.  I was OK while I was watching Filmon upstairs but when I came to go to bed downstairs....it was chilly and thank goodness I haven't taken the nest apart,  one fleece under blanket and duvet cover.  Awake by six forty five and the mist was hanging in valley and there was a ground frost which surprised me.  I went out to take a few photos and didn't bother with shoes but I soon came in and got my clogs on and back out again I went.

I watched the sun come up over the mountains, rescued my baby plants from their frozen water containers and left them to drain, the rain from the day before had swamped them and I hadn't checked.  I've got to get out there tomorrow and clean the plastic trugs before the mosquitoes settle.  The poor lemon tree was looking a little crystallised but it thawed out in quick sitcks once the sun came up.

Breakfast was a banana first thing and then down to the bread van when I heard his horn.  I placed the usual order, one sliced one unsliced and he had cheesy bread so that was breakfast sorted and I demolished it walking round the garden.  Next step was to pick up the phone and call the Librarian to check that she was OK.  The phone went dead in my hand but she phoned back a minute later and at her request we met up in Kardjali for a meander, lunch and a general mooch.  Lunch at a local very popular watering hole and we managed to beat the rush, Kaufland, Lidl and I finished off at the garage in Djebel so that they could try and find a 'rattle'.  Over the pit, temporary repair sorted and it goes into 'hospital' tomorrow.....a little repair round the back axle.  Stopped off at the other garage leaving Djebel where the sister of the original owner of Beauty that's holed up in the garage.  Because the ownership was not transferred over to me, I've managed to track down the daughter of the registered owner and her husband is going to get the necessary paperwork organised when the other brother comes back from working in Germany.  That will be a relief...I shall officially own it...

Home for five thirty, shopping unpacked, everything in the right place, fish finger sandwiched for supper since we had a cooked lunch in Kardjali....fire belting it out and all's good in my little world.  LN....Fingers crossed for a reasonable bill tomorrow...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 29, 2017, 3:38pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 29th March

Really good night's sleep, seven start and a beautiful morning to wake up to.  Clear skies and a blank canvas in front of me except for getting the Beast into the garage for what appeared to be a minor repair which it would have been if the part had been available but more of that later.

Washed dressed, banana for breakfast, washing in the machine to work away without any input and into the Beast just before nine.  I stopped off at the post office in Rogosche to see if there were any mother's days cards that so far hadn't made it to me. The door said they should be open at eight thirty but a passerby said that they should be there in the next ten minutes or so....Tova e Bulgaria....

Dropped the car off at the garage and walked back to the garage shop to sit and chat to my student's mum.  She had the list of the required parts but there was one issue.  The Beast has an electronic switch that can change the suspension through soft, medium and hard and these weren't available from the normal suppliers and no one had any record of the part number in their systems.  Eventually I decided to leave the shop and for them to do further investigation, did a little shopping and took a taxi from the town centre.  I didn't know the taxi driver but when we stopped outside the house he asked me how much I normally pay so I said between eight and ten so he said ten and then asked me the same question.  I gave the same response and he offered me two lev back....and wanted to shake on it.  I told him not to bother, smiled sweetly and got out of the car.  I shall pay eight next timeI get the same man.

I spent a couple of hours on the internet trying to get the necessary part.  The garage had managed to locate from Japan...eight hundred lev each so we settled for the Bulgarian solution...fix standard ones...I never changed the pressure button anyway.  I'm still without and feel a little lost without it even though I don't need it.  Psychological no doubt.  Out to the garden and planted up thirty bulbs and another thirty to go.  I didn't do any digging, I wasn't in the mood.  Washing in and put away and the fire is already going.  Even though we've had a sunny day...it's been a sharp wind again.  Sp hopefully more of the same tomorrow and I shall finish moving that soil....I keep looking at it but that doesn't make it move at all.  Potatoes, onions and chicken for supper...well it will be when I get myself down to the kitchen.  LN....Beast should be fixed tomorrow...LN

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March 30, 2017, 4:08pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 30th March

The sun was up before me this morning so I was into the kitchen, washed up from the last couple of days and took my coffee out to the terrace and sat in the sun in my PJ's.  Beautiful morning, not a cloud in the sky and not much wind...that came later.  I cooked bacon, egg and fried bread for breakfast thinking that if I was going out to do the deed with the shovel, pick and walking stick that I needed something to sustain me but it took another hour before I was ready to set sail for the bottom of the garden.  I've got the technique now and was going along swimmingly until the wind turned to gale force and even though I'd got a leather waistcoat on it was going straight through the armholes so I only managed a couple of hours.  I came in and settled myself on the sofa and at two my phone went and it was the garage to say that my car was ready.  On automatic pilot I said I would be there for three forgetting that it was the car I was going to fetch and I had to organise transport.  I toyed with the idea of a taxi but then remembered that the school bus came at four fifteen and that would be soon enough to get the Beast.  The bus was late but I caught it outside the house and got in the front with the driver.  Since I was catching it on its outward journey I went down to the lower village that few get to see and we dropped of one school girl and one from the baby nursery with the grandma.  At this point there was only me left on the bus so we turned round and back to my village and on to Djebel.  He asked me where I was going and I told him that I had to pick up my car from the garage, he knew the owner and took me down there.  Luybo's comment was that I had 'big transport' and at a cost of two leva for the scenic tour...I did pretty well.  

All the work done on the Beast and the Bulgarian work round was completed at a very reasonable rate.  I drove back to the village, stopped off and got some more paint brushes and work gloves...there's a couple of fingers missing on my last pair and I know not why...I think they were Sally's from last year.  Lovely drive home and a very calm evening.  I've just taken the photos of the garden...I was going to take a picture of the storks in Djebel but they were obviously out topping up on frogs and the likes for the night.  Another few hours on the garden tomorrow should make another dent in it.  I forget that the plot that I'm digging over is the average size garden in the UK....and I expect to do it in quicksticks....Still...slow and steady and a little and often....it's a good motto.  Few clouds gathering now but according to the weather forecast it should be good tomorrow....LN..Kitchen calls...hunger bugs are biting...LN

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Elsa Peters
March 30, 2017, 4:11pm Report to Moderator

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More pickies

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Elsa Peters
March 30, 2017, 4:35pm Report to Moderator

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And yest more

Chicken leg with potatoes and onions in the oven so supper is sorted.  Just a couple of the evening sky.....LN

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Elsa Peters
March 31, 2017, 3:16pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 31st March

Six o'clock start and dark as you like.  I could have gone back but instead chose coffee, I played a few games and got out on to the terrace for my second cup.  It had rained in the night...the terraces were in the process of drying off but it's good for the new shrubs and the seeds coming though.  Washed and dressed by eight and breakfast was Ryvita with smoked cheese and I think I was delaying going out.  That wind was brisk and cold and it took me until ten thirty before I was out there armed with fork, spade, rake and Bulgarian bashing tool.  I've cleared a lot more and planted three more shrubs down there that had been waiting for the right spot.  I also found a clump of seeds and I think that they are sunflowers so I've distributed them around the garden and only time will tell.  I came in for half an hour or so when I could stand the wind no longer but again back out at twelve and came in again at two.  I'd had enough.

I was tempted to go into the workshop and service the lawnmower so that I could runit over tomorrow if the weather stays dry but instead I lit the fire, got the book out and again attempted to settle in to the Ian Banks but just no joy.  Instead I'm going to read Diane Galbadon's Outlander series.  I've probably forgotten enough for me to enjoy it again.  As I looked out there was smoke rising from the hillside and I can only assume that it's down to my sheep farmer.  I don't know why or what it's about...I shall have to ask him when I see him.  Another local mystery....

So the end of another month...we're a quarter of the way through the year already....Soon be time to order the wood for winter...
LN......spicy sausage tonight with a hint of chilli....LN

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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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