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Elsa Peters living a new life in Bulgaria    General Boards    My Diary by Elsa Peters  ›  SEPTEMBER 2017
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Elsa Peters
September 1, 2017, 4:44pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 1st September

Silly night again.  I was falling asleep at nine thirty so went to bed...wrong move.  I was awake at one thirty. read for a while, back off again and awake at five, back off again eventually and awake at eight.  I think the five alarm was the man in the next village with his very loud music that he plays in opposition to the mosque in Djebel.  The hoddja in Djebel does his best but he hasn't got a volume knob attached as does the man with the player in the next village.  Having said that...it's their holiday so why not.  I'm sure we have some revellers around Christmas that get up peoples noses.  

So phone calls were made this morning and I ordered the new batteries for the Librarian's Surf.  She's been caught with no juice so no go.  I waited for the phone call from the garage and it eventually came at two.  Prior to that Gyuldjan arrived at eleven this morning to use the internet again but came with a parcel of meat that I put straight in the freezer.  I get a portion of the animal that was killed for the festival.  Poor thing looks absolutely knacked leading up to her wedding and after about an hour on the computer asked if she would go to sleep on the bed and of course I said yes.  I cleaned up the little house balcony and some of the wood that's lying around and was about to start on the potting up when her husband arrived.  I told him where she was so he went up to the bedroom and I hope woke her with a loving kiss but probably a good shake would work better.  Off they went to visit his parents in his village but she did ask if she could come back and sleep here tonight...I know her house is full so she's down stairs in the winter room.

Off to Djebel to get the batteries and then down to the Librarians to deliver them.  I think she knows 'a man who can' who's going to fit them tomorrow.  Today is difficult...no one is available...too busy with families.  We sat for a while with coffee and I was home for five thirty.  I warmed up the remains of the curry from last night and finished supper early and decided that a few of the pot plants looked in need of a good drink so it was out with the hose pipe.  Half way through two of the children from the lower village arrived clutching several black plastic bags full of meat.  With much deliberation and a very serious face he handed  two to me that are now sitting waiting on the kitchen table and need packing for the freezer.  Such a wonderful surprise.

So now Egghead has just started....Gyuldjan was warned to be back by eight and she's already late and might not turn up...I'll wait and see.  Can't do pictures on the first post of the month...they are to follow.  LN...Now...relax...LN
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Elsa Peters
September 1, 2017, 5:13pm Report to Moderator

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And now the pickies

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Elsa Peters
September 2, 2017, 5:14pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 2nd September

My early morning electronic 'spiritual' music that is much better sung locally woke me up this morning before the sun so I had an hour or so watching the birds and the bees clutching my coffee to my chest.  It was not so warm out there.  The birds were very active and it's amazing how many different ones there are.  I was dive bombed by the martins but they were moving so quickly that I just couldn't catch them in flight, there were a couple of woodpeckers that I could hear but not see since they were in the bushes at the bottom of the garden, the fly catchers were on sentry duty and swooping down to catch insects on flight and the crow was telling every one to stay away from his or her patch.  The blue tit was pretending to be a flycatcher and jumping up and down on my tree and there was a wagtail proudly flitting across the grass.  All in all ...a very gentle start to the day.

I was slow to get dressed and missed the first visit of the bread van and wanted to catch him on his return journey.  Remsier was walking down the road so we waited together, I bought bread, she bought a couple of chocolate croissants and she handed me one and we sat in the garden and had our breakfast together....so my intended bacon sandwich was put on hold.

Off she toddled, I went back to taking my cuttings and generally clearing out the little house.  It's been a bit of a dumping ground for glass bottles and old coffee tins but they have to go...you only need so many for soaking paint brushes and the rest.  It was so hot so I took to the computer and caught up with essentials.  There was a shout from the yard and my painter was there with his family...they'd been down to the cemetery which is something that they all do at this festive time.  He's not going back to Sofia to work so I've lined him up for one or two jobs when the holiday is over.  My benches want painting again and my old wood wants chopping.  Had my nap today...it's been a busy few days and I felt I needed it and managed to catch the highlights from the Diamond League athletics.  When that was over I realised that it was now too late to get the Beast cleaned for the wedding tomorrow so I decided to do it myself and I've saved myself twelve leva and it didn't take long at all and would have been much quicker if Remsier hadn't come back for a second instalment.  I finished it when she left and even hoovered the inside.  Haciber came round and gave me some baclava that was a present from her son's new girlfriend.  Apparently she's paying a visit to the village tomorrow...it would be good to catch up with her since I've fiddled around with photos of her for the family.

Tools away....I've just finished watching the end of Mamma Mia and I'll be taking a soak in the bath and tarting up my toe nails...getting ready for a wedding.  I'm not sure about supper...it's probably going to be a cheese and onion sandwich but no plans as yet to get down to the kitchen and burst into action.  LN....Gentle day. lots of amiable contact with the villagers...LN

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Elsa Peters
September 3, 2017, 5:13pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 3rd September

So this morning it was a seven start and my deadline for today was ten thirty.  I sat with a coffee working out a bit of a timetable and at eight it was in to the shower, hair washed and enveloped in towels I headed for my bedroom and the hairdryer.  I had only one problem...I hadn't decided which outfit to wear.  I had a choice of three but shoes to match two and was short of a top to wear under any of them.  I had to dig through my underwear drawer, tried one, tried two and eventually settled for a little black number which could go with any of the outfits so back to square one.  I decided to dry my hair instead and contemplate which one it would be and I eventually settled on the German grey number with a large belt with a huge silver buckle.  I suddenly remembered I had black toe-less shoes which meant that I had to do the naked toe nails so I hitched up my skirt which is more or less mid calf length, toe nails done and fingers to match.  I tried the shoes on and settled for the enclosed one so job done but not really necessary.  The bed now was looking as if a bomb had gone off but at least I'd made my decision and was ready to get into the Beast by ten thirty.

I headed down the village towards Cinderella's village and there were lots of people waiting at different points of the road for the coach.  I stopped at the bus stop in the village and her parents were there along with her sister and children and the children were dying to get into the Beast.  We settled for the sister, husband and children and the Cinderella's parents were travelling with the villagers on the coach.  We went down the back lane and were more or less first to arrive at the venue but it didn't take long for the relatives to arrive, the coach to park up and a minibus for the bridegroom's villagers.  It's the way it's done here...it's normally one or sometimes two from each family and I think there must have been around three hundred in total.  I was sited on the family and my official title was photographer although two others were present...one sporting a huge Sony and the other a smaller Canon but they were both much bigger than mine.  I wasn't frowned on though and took my place with the officials and I think I got a few more than they did since I was there earlier.

The bride and groom arrived in their own car which was decorated with ribbons.  She eventually emerged, straightened out the frothy dress, headed for the boot to retrieve wine glasses, champagne, a bottle of wine and they were all set head down the arcade of guests clutching carnations.  The couple moved through and the bouquet was traditionally thrown, caught and I stayed well back from that.  The champagne and glasses were brought out in the venue, the couple sipped the champagne and the glasses were thrown over their heads and crashed on the floor.  Now I'm not sure which bit of heritage this comes from.  I know they do it in the Jewish religion but not sure of any others.  Anyway out came the dustpan and brush and they were in to their first dance with the fireworks a little too close to the dress for comfort for me....again...tradition.  There was a lot of dancing, I picked at my salad which everyone had, ate a few peanuts, drank water and there was just a lot of activity.  No speeches though so that's good but the food seems to be interspersed with everything else.  

Money time and this time I got a better view of the action.  Ribbon was placed round the bride and bridegroom's necks and it started rolling in.  His parents gave jewellery and I was surprised to see a pop sock materialise to get the bracelets on the bride's wrist.  I hope she's got one to hand to get them off again.  She received a beautiful necklace and other bits of gold were pinned to the neck ribbons.  The rest of the food came interspersed with activity and the finale was the cutting of the cake. again with fireworks out of the top of it. a little more dancing and then a winding up.  I had gained another two for the Beast on the way home.  The mother of the bride came back in the back of the Beast and I helped to get her out when we stopped off at the bus stop in their village.  We unloaded the goodies, I refused any more cake but I reckon that some will be heading my way soon.

I have taken loads of photographs which now need sorting so I've just got a few to post.  The day went well and soon the couple will be heading back to Germany.  It wasn't the usual crowd for me but I've made more friends from the other villages.  I was approached by the father of one of the ladies that come to visit me when they come to visit their parents and he explained that he was the father of the three girls....and as I took off from the bus stop they were just heading back and waved.  So out of my glad rags and into a pair of cotton trousers and t-shirt....it's been a very hot day.    I've just eaten an ice-cream as well....I've given up counting calories for today.  LN....They're married and the parents are happy....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 4, 2017, 4:04pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 4th September

Lovely night last night and woke up at six thirty and watched the sun come up with a coffee.  I went out to the garden to check up what might have happened overnight and ...nothing has.  I watered some of the pots since yesterday was a pretty dry day and checked out the cuttings in the little house.  I gave them a good watering and at some point tomorrow I'm going to get the two hundred water storage container and get it set up to save me walking backwards and forwards.  So I got the car out and had a few minutes with my Avatar.  She was mixing cement and dolloping it on the top of the wall ready for winter protection.  She collected up the ends of the grit heaps at the beginning of the year and used that as ballast and I've offered her more if she wants it.  She can have it from my heap.  

The Librarian arrived and I shouted that I was over with my Avatar but I used Bulgarian.  Avatar asked me why when the Librarian doesn't really speak it and I said I didn't know and we had a little giggle about it....I do love her.  So back home and collected my things together, out with the Beast and we both drove into Djebel to get her car sorted.  I popped into the Garage shop and explained the problem to my student's mum who has it happened was on the phone to her husband at the garage.  By the time the Librarian arrived they were all waiting with spanners at the ready and she really thought they were mind readers.  We piled into mine and left them to it...stopped at the leva shop and I bought a couple of large bowls for the little house for storing the plants in, more potting compost, pizza for late breakfast and then we went down to the market and I saw lots of changes.  I'd not been down there for a while and they've built shops at the road side which adds protection for the stallholders.  I bought grapes and the Librarian filled up with fresh veggies, back to Kaufland and I noticed that it had Gold Blend coffee on promotion so I bought one jar.  I always used to buy it in the UK but felt it must be the water...it didn't taste the same here and for the extra in price just wasn't worth it.  Lidl for me and the Librarian picked up her computer that was in for repair and was told there was nothing wrong with it.  I find this surprising since it wouldn't even boot for the woman in the repair shop when we took it in.  I didn't go in....I might have felt pugilistic tendencies coming over me...

Back to the garage and her car was ready...home to mine ...we had a cold drink and off she went.  I've had a very lazy afternoon....I might jump to tomorrow.  It's been pretty hot and sticky since lunchtime and I was hoping it would rain but the clouds have rolled over and it looks like I might have to water the plants.  Ah well...winter comes soon.   LN ...Pointless,   Eggheads and then bed....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 5, 2017, 4:54pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 5th September

It was a half seven start this morning and I lingered in the pit with my coffee and Candy Crush until eight forty five.  The sun was half hidden by clouds and they had to be captured.  I missed the bread van but there was a third of a French stick which sufficed for breakfast with my new reduced pear jam.  I wouldn't write home about it...very sweet and the chunks didn't really taste of anything.  I shan't be buying that again.  Dressed and headed for the garden and the clock was quite swift to go round today.  

I opened up the card for Ms D of S's daughter's first birthday and realised had to find another present to go in it,  I'd bought a set of skittles for her and the gift bag to go with it and they definitely wouldn't have fit in the first one.  I scanned the gift bag and made a card for the little one, packed the little one with a t-shirt that I'd got from the charity shop and put everything ready for a visit later in the afternoon.  I headed into the little house and removed the old window frames and put them into one of the other rooms.  I stacked up the rest of the wood, took two old tyres from the what will eventually be the kitchen and used them to make a stand for the new big plastic container earmarked for compost.  Three more pots of cuttings, buddelia babies potted up and two pots of clematis seeds buried and fingers crossed they will germinate.  I need to buy another couple of clematis, the ones that I have flower early and I it would be nice to have more colour in the workshop terrace garden.  It was a pretty warm day so everything in the little house needed watering again as did the terrace pots.

I came in at one and settled on the sofa with my tablet , checked emails and Facebook and by two made contact with Ms D to confirm that it was OK to go over this afternoon.  I dressed for the occasion, went into Djebel to get some fuel for the Beast, stopped off and had a few minutes with my student's mum, popped into the supermarket to get chicken wings for tonight and a loaf of bread...everything at home is destined for the hillside tomorrow.  I arrived at three thirty and spent a lovely afternoon with them all.  The little one is a poppet, pulling herself up and walking round furniture, she's not too sure about getting down from furniture yet but that will hopefully come before a flat head. Home for five thirty, chicken wings, onions and potatoes into the oven and they were ready for seven.  Now demolished, only the washing up left and after threatening rain when I was driving over to Ms D of S's but it was only a threat.  Now it's coming down though and the temperature has dropped considerably.  I've just caught the sunset though and was surprised....just a band of red over the mountains...the rest of the mountains have all disappeared, grey everywhere.  Time to shut the windows and doors and batten down the hatches.  LN...The plants are enjoying it at least...LN

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Elsa Peters
September 6, 2017, 4:50pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 6th September

Seven start but the rain from last night had evaporated and now the mountains were no more.  You could hardly see the bottom of the garden.  Everything was still, no wind at all and it took ages for the mist to burn off.  I was slow off the mark too....I had nowhere to go and nothing to do so what was the rush.  I got a load of washing in ever hopeful that we would have a good day.  Accuweather said that we would and I believed it but it didn't really get going temperature wise until this afternoon.  

First job was a bonfire and there was still a lot left in the burner from last time so I turned it over and got it going again and added today's rubbish to it.  It was still a little damp but it soon got going and there were several others on the hillside doing the same thing.  It must be the day for it.  By the time I got the washing out most of the smoke had dissipated but I've enough garden that it doesn't really bother me....the smoke never seems to cling to anything that's out there.  So breakfast was a ham sandwich...I'd bought fresh bread yesterday so it was OK but it does go over very quickly here.  I suppose it's because they don't stick in the same amount of preservatives as in the UK.  The old stuff was lobbed over the wall for the animals...it's pretty poor pickings now that I've got the burner down the bottom but the cats still come round and look at where the bin used to be sited...ever hopeful.

I settled down after lunchtime for a snooze on the sofa but I was only half there when my Avatar appeared in the doorway clutching a plate of home made banichka and now lunch had arrived.  She didn't want to come in, she said she was going back to sleep and we decided it must be the weather.  The change from hot to cold, dry to moisture laden air has caught us all out.  I went back to the sofa and read for a while, ate my newly acquired lunch and promptly went off again.  A full tummy as they say requires rest...so that's what I gave it.  I was still on the sofa reading when she came back.  I'd heard the ladies talking in the road and I eventually found out why she was here.  She doesn't like asking me to do things for her but tomorrow I'm taking her to Djebel to get her gas bottle filled up before she goes back to Germany in eight days time and to get some money out of the cash point.  She wanted me to take her card which as we know in the UK is a big no-no hence that's why I said that she must come with me....We went into the little house and I showed her my cuttings  labelling them for her sake 'spring shrubs', 'summer shrubs' she never knows the names of anything and it's our little joke.  At this Beyser appears in the garden with one of the lovely honeysuckle shrubs that has the most amazing red tubular flowers.  It had sprung up with her tomatoes and now it was mine so tomorrow's task is to find a space for it where it will flourish.  

Almost eight my time...cold chicken wings left over from last night for supper so not a lot of effort there.  Tomorrow and early trip into Djebel and then I think it's time the grass was cut before it really takes hold again and it might be out with the hoe to chop the heads off the weeds.  Decisions, decisions.  One more trip tonight with my Kindle to show the wedding photos to my Avatar and a picture of one of the neighbours who is the father of the woman that comes to see me when she is over from Ankara.  I have to put a name to the family and she will probably know them.  LN...I'm on my way....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 7, 2017, 4:14pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 7th September

Five start so I turned over and managed to get in another couple of hours. I opened the door to the terrace but soon closed it again.  Despite the sun it was cold so I hopped back into bed, picked up my Kindle and spent the next hour spreading jam and getting bears over the string and winning counters.  I suddenly remembered that I was destined to take my Avatar in to Djebel this morning for a top up for her cooker gas bottle and to get some money out of the cash point.  I dressed for the occasion, went over with my Kindle to show her the photographs of  Gouldjan's wedding and the family that I was trying to place and Haciber was out there like lightening to join in the fun.  I saw the gas bottle by the gate so knew the trip was on so I explained that I was going to have some breakfast, she was going to do the same, and I'd be back by nine.  Marmalade on toast, half a cup of coffee, car out and down the road to turn the car then back to her house.  I loaded the bottle into the back of the Beast, she loaded herself into the back and off we set.

I managed to find a parking place near to the bank and she handed me her card.  We had to wait...the woman in front was taking out money from several cards and checking the receipts to make sure the machine was working properly...doh....it's not human.  I asked my Avatar to watch me to show her how easy it is to take money out but she wasn't having any of it.  I handed the money and the card back to her after slipping it in the folder with the password on the front and security is not as good as in the UK.  It's all come very quickly to them.

Over to the gas station and I recognised the man as the husband of my lady from the hardware shop.  We had a conversation about the weather, I explained that it was my neighbour that wanted only ten leva's worth which he dutifully put in the bottle.  Down to the supermarket, she didn't get out and I popped in for a few things so that she thought that I needed things.  She only let me take her in because she thought I had things to do...so I tell fibs sometimes.  We made it home safely and I wrestled the bottle into the house and as we came out Gouldjan and her new husband had pulled up in their car.  She'd gone to Haciber's house so Haciber had to run quickly back home frightened that she was missing something, I got in the Beast and headed home.  Gouldjan followed on and I told her that I'd got one hundred and ninety photos from the wedding and did she want them on a memory stick.  I gave her three bags of charity clothes that I'd been holding for her and off they set and she said that she'd come back after lunch.  I set about putting the photos on the stick and they picked it up around one thirty.  They're off to Germany tomorrow...two thousand plus miles to drive and he was yawning already and she doesn't drive....good luck to him.

I've had a very leisurely afternoon....it was too hot to do anything else.  Had a conversation with an old friend about the Live, Laugh and Love' phrase and I mentioned that I had a drawer pack with individual drawer for each letter and now she wants one.  I went out at four and managed to plant up the honeysuckle that Beyser had given me yesterday, I've cooked spicy sausage and onions and supper is over for tonight....a little tele and then an early night for me...no siesta today.  LN...Supper with the family tomorrow....LN

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Friday 8th September

Lazy morning and again the sun was up before me but I did take a coffee out on to the terrace and braved the cold air.  I had bread from yesterday so didn't need to go to the bread van but the phone went at eight thirty and it was Gouldjan to say that they were in Haskovo already and on their way to Germany.  She also wanted to thank me for all the help that I'd given her in the run up to the wedding and for allowing her to use my internet for the invitations and the likes and the bed where she rested her weary head when it all go too much.  I've told her I'll get my own back when I go visit them in Germany probably later this year.

Eventually I got round to doing something in the garden.  Again I put off the lawn...it was just too hot again once that sun got up.  The lavender is no more...I've trimmed the flower stalks off and they are now in little clumps hanging upside down drying off in the little house.  I did take pillow cases out so that the seeds would fall into them but I'm going to give them a couple of days first so that the moisture doesn't hang about in the pillow cases.  I also gave the lavender a hard trim and got rid of the dead stuff underneath.  The one at the furthest end from the steps has lots of honeysuckle growing through it and I've now got a jam jar full of the trimmings and I'm hoping they'll root.  The rest of the debris was taken down to the bottom of the garden and while I was there I decided to do a little weeding....well the amount was little but the weeds were gynormous.  It's been a neglected area but I think I've now decided what I want to do with the area and the sort of path that I want running through it.  Tomorrow might be a day for putting a plan into action.  Finally I watered the garden...the flowers were looking a little worse for wear and positively parched and some of the shrubs had leaves hanging down.

I came in at five fifteen, washed and got ready for an evening with the family.  Supper was up to usual standard with one of the local dishes served along with very sweet tomatoes from their garden.  Melon and biscuits for afters and I left at just after ten hence the late update,  I didn't have a siesta this afternoon and I'm looking forward to my bed tonight....there's nothing on the agenda for tomorrow outside the perimeter...so far....so I'll see what I can achieve from the blue print.  LN....Bed calls....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 9, 2017, 4:01pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 9th September

Seven start and coffee on the terrace but I could have done with a sweater this morning.  Sun was up but no warmth in it but it soon caught up with itself.  I was going to head out to the bread van but realised that the loaf that I got from the supermarket on Thursday was still worth doing something with so I fried it off with some bacon, lashed it with brown sauce and glutinously munched my way through it.  My failing was that I didn't make the second but since I'd cleared the kitchen I decided to abstain.  More coffee, DM Sudoku and a five star in ten minutes is a bit of a record.  I meandered for a while on FB, answered a few emails and made apologies for a none appearance at a wedding celebration tonight in London.  Maybe I was feeling my age when I refused but I saw the photos of the bride and groom on FB last night so I'm only missing out on the bun fight.

I did managed to get the pillow cases onto the lavender but it did fight back.  I swept up the already fallen seeds and ended up sneezing and feeling asthmatic...it's pretty powerful stuff.  I came in for water and five minutes but then grabbed the nettle disguised as a lawn mower and decided to tackle the grass.  My enthusiasm did fail me after I done the big house lawn and the surrounds to the grave garden to the side and the rest can be done tomorrow.  I've already put the fuel can in the back of the Beast....I had to top up the mower and expect there to be insufficient to finish the job.  The strimmer needs to be brought in to play tomorrow....there's a lot of this creeping weed which looks very pretty when it's flowering but hangs itself over the surrounds of the gardens and the mower just doesn't cope with it.  Having looked at the weather forecast...it's supposed to be thirty plus tomorrow...I could be heading for my last day at the pool so early start in the garden...or perhaps leave it until Monday.  Not sure of the bird that I caught on the electricity wires this afternoon...I'll have to get the bird book out.

So I've got TV Catchup on and just watched a repeat of University challenge and was amazed how many of the answers I remembered from the other night.  Only Connect is on, how do people's brains work that way and as for the Wall...so obscure.   Strictly starting tonight so I'm on a countdown to Christmas or so it seems....where as the year gone.  Nothing on for supper so far...it will be a look in the fridge to see what's available, probably spicy sausage again.  LN....I think my mojo is coming back.....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 10, 2017, 6:19pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 10th September

Half six start and beat the sun this morning.  I sat on the bedroom terrace with my coffee and watched the mist change in the valley,  We'd had a freak shower last night along with a few flashes of lightening but I didn't hear much thunder.  It was probably because I had the Last Night of the Proms' at full blast but I risked it with the PC and everything was fine.  I went out to the garden and started weeding round the walnut tree.  As you know I'm about to start developing this area and started off my digging up the walnut that's self set under the original and it needs to be somewhere else.  It's sitting in a bucket of water for tonight...I'll find a place for it tomorrow.  I found out the barbed wire that my Avatar wanted for the front fence to keep the cows out and took over my coil of the wire to secure the other in place and started cutting up some ten centimetre lengths for her to make it easier.  So I went back home and heard the bread van coming so back down the road and my Avatar had the last cheesy bread so she was determined that I should have it and she got pizza for herself.  We sat in her garden, I left her to do the work and I headed home.

Back down the garden and continued where I'd left off.  I used the hedge trimmer to tidy up one of the shaped bushes, did a bit more weeding and came in for a drink.  It was beginning to get hot out there so I changed my location.  I looked in the wood store and reckoned that it needed sorting so that when the new lot comes I know exactly where it's going.  Last years was moved under the window and despite a promise that my painter was coming to clear last years from the garage...he's not turned up so I got the old axe and the lump hammer which was successful last year and managed to split about half of it.  I was conscious that I was making a lot of noise but hey...omelettes and eggs sprang to mind.  I was in and out keeping my fluid levels up and when I was splitting the last one I noticed my painter walking towards my gate.  Apparently according to my Avatar, he'd asked what I was doing, she told him splitting wood and he came up in a bit of a frenzy telling me that it;s men's work and that I shouldn't be using the axe as a splitter.  Anyway...he's coming with his chain saw to finish the rest on Tuesday so it'll be time to get the next lot in.  I shall only get six cubics this year...I've still got lots left from last.  So off he went, I went to see my Avatar and related the story to her and came back put my tools away and went in to start supper.  Avatar had said that she'd had nothing for evening meal last night and that at midnight her tummy had started rumbling....so I cooked enough for two.....spicy sausage with tomatoes and cannelloni beans topped off with butter fried croutons.  I whipped it over telling her that her tummy kept me awake last night and I didn't want a reoccurance....

I finished my supper...there's lots of washing up to be done tomorrow morning...CBA tnight.  I think a bath is in order firstly to get rid of the salt from the perspiration...log splitting is hard work and secondly to ease the aching limbs.  Good day's work though.  LN....Mojo is back with a vengeance....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 11, 2017, 4:31pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 11th September

Normal six thirty start and after my late bath last night and warm PJ's I slept really well.  I caught sight of the reflection of the sun as I went down for my coffee so it was kettle on, locating the camera, taking the shot and I went out on to the main terrace to enjoy my cuppa.  I looked up and there was rather a large bird on the grass by my tree and I half expected it to fly away when I went back inside for the camera but surprise. surprise it was still there.  When I got it in camera shot I realised it was a lazy woodpecker ground feeding and by the looks of him he's a really old bird.  Not content with the one two more appeared but this time on the tree.  They had a bit of a fight as to who's territory it was but the old one still foraged in the grass unaware of the disturbance.  What sightings I had...and I managed to get the shots to prove it.  The older one eventually decided that floor pickings had been exhausted and he made his way to the tree to join in the bun fight.  Five minutes later it was all over and they shot off on to the hillside.

I came back in and faced the washing up for the last couple of days and within five minutes the kitchen was ship shape.  I made another coffee and out on to the terrace again contemplating what was on the agenda for breakfast and top of the list was a bacon sandwich again with fried bread since it was yesterdays.  I lay on the sofa with the Kindle and checked out emails and the likes while I munched my sandwich, took the plate back into the kitchen and re tidied the kitchen only this time it took only two seconds.  I decided a little more computer time was necessary so it was on to the main machine but even though it's mine to waste I decide I was wasting too much so I powered down and headed out to the garden and watered the pots.  I also remembered that it was my good friend Angela's birthday so I made a phone call to the birthday girl and she seemed in good spirits.  I'd love to be there with her but ...next year...

The next mission was to dead head the zinnias but I left the sunflowers...the finches are having a field day with them.  As for zinnia seeds I have so many of them that I might be putting them out for a snack for the birds come the colder weather...perhaps I should just harvest the lot of them...sunflowers included.  I also collected some of the big yellow daisy seeds with black centres and they been put into an envelope and labelled and added to the others in the little house.  As for the cuttings...they're looking good.  Forsythia, hypericom and buddlea seem to be doing best, what I think is a mimosa tree seems to be thriving and I'll keep fingers crossed for the rest.  They wont be going out until next year...they'll all spend the winter inside to form good strong plants.

Spent the afternoon on the sofa with a book that I'd brought over from England and forgotten about.  I've read it a few times and it's the journey of a high priestess through the initiation process.  Some good philosophies to ponder on,  I did nod off for an hour or so...it's been a corker again but it's much cooler now.  Supper of a chicken leg with onions and potatoes cubed is in the oven and I should really go and check on it...it's smelling good.  My painter is due tomorrow to clear the rest of the wood from the garage and while he's got his chain saw here...I might get him to trim down the huge logs that are by the house wall and make some seating for the garden...just a thought for now but I'll give it more thought later.    LN...Supper, relax and think chunky furniture....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 12, 2017, 5:43pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 12th September

Five start for me and it was black as you like....but I didn't manage to go off again.  This time Candy Crush came to the rescue along with coffee and it was soon half six and I was waiting for sunrise.  I noticed that there was a heck of a front over the mountains towards Greece and it looked like there might be a chance of rain...wrong.  Cloudy sunrise but interesting patterns in the clouds, I went back to my Kindle, read for a while and then next thing at just before eight my painter was there with his chain saw and some leeks and tomatoes for me.  At this point I was still in my PJ's but they're decent enough to accept visitors so I went out to greet him, told him he was early and from then on it was all systems go.  He said the new axe that I'd bought wasn't much cop so we discussed asking my Avatar for the use of hers.  As it happened she'd seen him walking up the road so had made her way over with home made yogurt and a bucket of unripe apricots that are now in the little house to ripen.  I walked back with her to fetch the axe and I had a discussion with my painter as to why he didn't want to use mine and was trying to use my old one....but he was coerced into it and after about three swipes with it declared it was better than he had ever used before due to the design of the metal on the blade.  I have a convert to all things Lidl....

I started sorting the wood from the garage into what I thought he could manage with the axe and the other I put to one side ready for the chain saw.  As it happened he decided that he could do most of it so I moved it from the garage to the yard so it was easier for him to get to.  I swept up the garage and set about tidying up the porch to the little house.  I decided that the new wood could go into the workshop and the wood from last year could go in the little house and there was more chance of using up some of the really old stuff with the newly chopped.  I am preparing for winter and September is like that.  The starter wood I put into the little house and that's a job for tomorrow...I have two large containers of it already but the rest might as well be done to make the place tidier,

Off he went after we'd stacked and cleaned and by one I was in the kitchen looking for something to eat and settled for local corned beef and toast because the bread had really gone over.  I settled on the sofa for a while and thought I'd check emails and the likes and there was no internet so back to the sofa with my book which didn't last long.  Sleep over came me and it was about half three when I arose from the dead.  I returned the axe to my Avatar and we sat in the garden, Haciber joined us and then Avatars grandsons came to visit so I soon legged it home.  I don't like intruding even though one of them is friends with my student and we go back a while.  I finished tidying the yard and put the debris on the garden to rot down and add more bulk to the soil...I've watered the garden since the promise of rain amounted to zilch and now I'm in for the night and ready Eggheads now the internet is back and much quicker after the maintenance at their end.  We've achieved lots today and tomorrow should really break the back of it.  I'll put in an order for six cubic and that should really set me up for the winter.  LN....I have some TV to watch...LN


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Elsa Peters
September 13, 2017, 3:31pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 13th September

Dark when I woke up but it was six but didn't feel like it.  The last hour had been a recurring dream that I was pleased to get out of but for the life of me cannot remember anything more about it.  I started playing my Candy Crush in that there was nothing else much to do...the washing up could wait and my next appointment was with the bread van.  I assembled the rubbish for a bonfire, took the leeks in and topped them for tonight's supper, checked out the cuttings in the little house and suddenly realised it was eight fifteen and still in PJ's so got a bit of a move on and suddenly I heard what I took to be his horn and headed down the village.  Beyser's garden was busy....my Avatar when there and Haciber and I wondered why they weren't on the way to the van when I realised ....there was no van.  It was somebody else with the same sort of horn.  I sat in the garden with the ladies until nine and I decided that the best solution was to give the money to Avatar, she was going to the van anyway and I'd pick it up from her.  As it happened....no van and some very disappointed ladies.  About nine thirty Avatar arrived with bread from yesterday, gave me back my money and she'd cooked and delivered three pancakes.  I had this sudden urge to cover them with sugar and lemon. remembered that I had no lemons in the house but that I had a lemon tree on the terrace.  I took the biggest there was and there was so much juice in it....delicious.  She also went away with some cucumbers and tomatoes from yesterday's goody bag from my painter....I have so many tomatoes and I don't like cucumbers.  I watered the pot plants since it looked like it could be another scorcher but it's been on and off all day.  By lunch time it looked as if the heavens were about to open but then it cleared up again and now there's a mixture of blue, grey and white.

My first job was to sort out the lock on the workshop.  It closed spasmodically, the lock plate was bent and it was very frustrating.  I removed the plate, put it on the outside of the frame and now it works perfectly.  I've also made another support for the plate by straightening a water down pipe clamp in the vice and added it to the door frame.  Clever old me and the screw holes were in the same place.  As for this afternoon...I went down the garden armed with my new tree lopper and attacked the two sloe bushes that are growing and reduced the two wild roses to no more than stumps in the ground.  I just hate roses...they are vicious and seem to hate me attaching themselves at every opportunity to arms, legs and hands.  The bigger sloe still needs some work on it...the main branch is really old so needs removing for the new stuff to take over.  I topped up the bonfire with the cuttings and the weeds and the bottom of the garden is beginning to take shape.  I came in for a water top up, lay on the sofa and I heard a strange noise and couldn't work out where it was coming from.  Eventually I tracked it down to the bathroom and it was obvious that a bird had found its way down the chimney and was now sitting and flapping about in the compartment where you get at the soot to clean it out.  No I'm not very good with birds so I went over to Avatar and I'd cooked up a plan involving a bag  to cover the hole and a flap to make sure that it didn't escape into the rest of the house.  She came over, undid the door on the soot hole, removed the inside plate, put her hand in and picked up the bird so so much for my detailed plans.  She carried it outside, opened her hand and it shot off over the hillside without a backwards glance.

Suddenly there was a flurry of activity and a ginger cat was sitting on the wall having obviously chased something up into the tree.  I couldn't see who was up there so I chased the ginger one away and there in the branches was one of the little ones, probably one of his, hanging on for dear life.  I came away to let her come down, I've just checked and she's made it successfully.  So no plans for supper so far...the leeks are crying out for attention but I suspect they'll have to wait for tomorrow.  It's going to be something quick and easy tonight.  Tomorrow is more gardening now I'm back in the mood.  I think a frame round the big sloe should help it get established again.  LN...Shower, a little TV and a book at bedtime....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 14, 2017, 4:36pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 14th September

Silly five start so it was Kindle and games to fill in some of the morning.  The sky was just starting to show some colour so I went out to take a few pickies of the morning but I was soon back in bed and enjoying the view.  With the sun moving round the sky and it's starting point, the view constantly changes and I just love it.  I did take lots of pickies with the Canon but the cable seems to have gone wonky donkey so I've ordered another one from the UK which should be with me in the next week or so.  I've fiddled with it but to no avail so the pickies are pretty limited today...

I was out watering the ones that I didn't get round to last night and I got absolutely drenched.  The cut off valve in the pipe to connect the two hoses seemed to have jammed so there was pressure on the wall end.  I took it off and forgot to turn it off first...Miss Wet T-Shirt was parading the garden.  So much so that I heard the bread van but knew that I wouldn't make it but the next thing my Avatar was in the garden asking if I wanted bread since she was going down there.  Apparently they all knew but me that there wasn't going to be a delivery tomorrow so it was top up time.  I asked her to get me a loaf but by the time that she'd got back to the road the van had already left and when we caught him on his return trip he only had brown left.  I was fortunate ....I had the half loaf that she'd given me yesterday and it was enough for Marmite on toast for breakfast which I ate doing my emails. and then the internet went down again so it was switch off time for me.

At half ten my visions of working in the garden had paled into insignificance.  The day was a corker again so I settled on the sofa and continued reading my old book from the UK.  I think I've read it three or four times but I'm going to do research on the writer....I don't know how much of it is true and for some reason I need to know.  She has some very interesting ideas that I associate with and if I'm doing that I definitely need to know.  So you can guess the rest....my eyelids headed southwards but it was an early start.  It was four before there were any signs of life and by this time it was OK to go out to the garden.  I sorted out the hose...it was dirt in the connector and gave the garden a good watering...you have to feel for them.  I dug over one of the sections of the veg garden removing the weeds and some of the bindweed that seems to be the scourge of some of the flowerbeds as well.  Again my Avatar disturbed me from my gardening only this time to return the one lev that I'd lent to her this morning to get the bread.  I told her to keep it but she surreptitiously slid it on to the outside table and we laughed about it.  I knew she would.  I've got this sneaky suspicion that she'll be making bread in the morning so that we all have fresh...

So seven thirty my time....I've had nothing since my Marmite from this morning and I'm beginning to feel peckish.  The sheep have just gone over the hill with the dog leading them but they were very reluctant....poor things must be worn out trying to nibble an existence when there's very little out there.   We need rain and lots of it.  Kitchen bound...those grubs are biting.  LN....I'm on a mission heading for the freezer...LN

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Elsa Peters
September 15, 2017, 4:30pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 15th September

Horrible night....I was awake at one thirty and read three.  I got my head down on the pillow and no sooner that I was about to nod when I heard the drone of a mossie.  I was up in a flash, couldn't see it or hear it  again so got out the spray and gave the bedroom a good blast.  By now it was getting on for four, I managed the rest of the night and woke up just before seven.  The sun wasn't up but I watched it come up sitting on the terrace with a coffee and thanking the big man upstairs for leading me to this place.  I had the urge to take up yoga again...it would be a beautiful place to meditate but with winter coming up and wood to get in...I reckoned that some of the positions might make my autumn more difficult than it normally is.  

I got the remains of my Avatar's bread out but there were a few green spots on it so it got lobbed over the hillside. I remembered that there was a brown 'healthy' loaf in the freezer so I took it out and tried to cut enough to make toast....and no luck so I put it on the sofa on the sun to thaw out a bit.  In the meantime I repaired the strimmer once I'd managed to remember where the new cutting plate was, pout a new blade on it and strimmed the grass between the lawn and the front wall and around the yard.  I did round the tomb garden and the veg patch and by this time the bread surrendered to the knife.  Four slices of toast with butter  and the rest of the marmalade and ginger jam so I'm waiting for Lidl to bring in more and yet more coffee.  By this time it was getting too hot to go out and do more in the garden...it was going to be another scorcher.  I'd promised my painter that I would print up his photo that I'd taken ages ago and get it in a frame for his daughter who's over from Norway.  Now the creation was easy but as for the printing, I'd used gloss printing paper and the printer just wouldn't take it up. It drew up the gloss paper and the one underneath and I ended up taking the back off the printer and feeding it in manually and eventually, and I mean eventually, I managed to print it.  It's framed and the two that  were not supposed to print I've laminated so he's got three for the price of 'zilch'.  I played on the computer for a while and eventually got out into the garden again at just after four.  I cut out the old wood from the sloe tree, did a bit of weeding and came back and sorted out one of the old pots.  I renewed the compost and potted up a couple of little bushes that have been hanging around for a while.  

Supper is over...I was hungry and settled for baked beans on toast leaving just enough bread and butter for tomorrow.  I think I might be heading into Kardjali tomorrow...I have a few things to get and I might just be tempted to see if the pool has water in it.  I shan't be gardening...I've lost my mojo again and the weather's looks like being again...hot, hot, hot.  The fly spray is coming out early tonight...doors closed and getting a good dowsing.  From Guldjan's wedding I took a cutting from a Busy Lizzie and I'm pleased to see that the roots are starting.  LN...A very restful day....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 16, 2017, 4:33pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 16th September

Six thirty start and I was amazed how dark it was.  I watched the sun-up and said goodbye to the moon...it was pretty magic this morning.  When the sun did come up I was back to Egypt and the way that they worshipped its arrival each day and reading a book about the progression of a princess through her initiation....it took me back to when I was out there.  So I came down, washed up from last night and walked the garden.  I came in, had a shower and washed my hair, rang my Painter to tell him that his photo was ready.  He was working so didn't want to come into Kardjali so I left the photographs in the little car on seat but it's still there now.  I went down to the bread van and since it's spasmodic at the moment, I bought two and put one in the freezer.  Avatar was nowhere to be seen so as I was driving by the house I stopped off to see if she wanted anything from Kardjali.  The answer was no so off I set on the dirt road.

Parked up in the usual square but there was no little man to take the money so it was a free day.  I went to the first cheapy shop and managed to get a denim jacket as ordered by my student, carried on to pay my telephone bill but the shop apparently is now not working on a Saturday.  I carried on to the next cheapy shop and picked up a couple of t-shirts, a pair of jeans and a very short skirt, all destined for my student and her sister.  Kaufland and bought a draw pack that's now sitting in pieces in the middle of the corridor needing only a hammer, wood glue and a screwdriver and apparently more than one pair of hands.  I'll tackle it tomorrow and finally to Lidl for mainly butter but with two kilogram bags of daffodils, I managed to knock up a sizeable bill.

I stopped off at my student's home and the family had just finished lunch and were trying to get me fattened up and I refused all advances.  I settled for a coffee and three small biscuits and they were over the moon with the clothes.  The jeans were a perfect fit for both of them, the jacket need a slight alteration on the sleeves, the t-shirts were brilliant and the skirt looked real funky.  Total bill for everything about seven leva and next week the father want's to go so it looks like I have a date but the daughters have got to come as well.  Chicken wings from the supermarket and more mayo , petrol in the can for the lawnmower and home for four.  Settled in and watched the Triathlon World Champion final which I was amazed at.  The women have such stamina and I was disturbed from my tele and my supper of roasted veg with chicken wings by Beyser bringing me a photo of her father that she wants enlarging, printing and framing.  She looked at the draw pack lying on the floor so I showed her a picture of what it would eventually look like and she couldn't believe that it was down to me.

Garden needs watering after such a hot day yet again. the daffodils are in the little house but wont be brought into play until next month.  Washing up and kitchen tidy on the agenda and a bonfire...I've got a bag of rubbish that will be better out than in.  LN...A hose is calling me....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 17, 2017, 4:52pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 17th September

Normal start....the garden that I didn't water last night despite the garden hose calling out to me was completed this morning.  Looks like I might be in for a hefty water bill again.  I suppose the first thing I should ask the men to do is to sort out the well,  I've got the submersible pump...I just need to get another hard hat to make sure that the one that goes down comes up again.  It was all down to the old man that lived next door and part lived in my house....he was in the first stages of dementia I reckon and stone and clothes went down there.  We'll know for a fact when it all comes up again.  I had my bonfire and as I looked over the hillside there was another fire going on.  I thought no more about it and suddenly there was a fire engine rushing down the road clanging away and about half an hour later, we had a couple of police cars with all systems in action.  It didn't take long to get it sorted though and all's good.

I heard the bread van but didn't need to make the trip.  I looked at the pile of wood that had the makings of a five draw cabinet and I'm still not sure where it's going to sit and its purpose.  I thought about using it to store the computer paper but I suppose I'm used to it sitting on the shelving unit.  It needs more thought.  Breakfast didn't need much thought though....fried bacon, egg and fried bread with brown sauce and it's done me well all day.  A banana was the only thing to pass my lips besides breakfast.  I settled in to do the photograph for my neighbour and again I had a problem with the paper.  It seems to draw through about three sheets with it so that the photo paper is underneath the one that is printing so again I fed it in manually and managed to get it to print and it's framed.  I did take it down to her but there were shoes outside but no one appeared to be home so I'll do it later.

Now as for the chest.  It's done, it's standing, the six drawers are made and are encased in the carcass and the only problem I had was with the wheels.  No mention of them made in the destructions apart from a picture showing them in situ.....I've got three in, but three wheels on my wagon is insufficient...I need to think about that tomorrow as well as the use it's going to be put to.  My plant from my desk is potted up and will sit on my desk to make sure that it gets the love an attention it deserves.  It's got a little bit of poo from the birds nest under the nest on the little house terrace.  I'm just hoping it's not too strong for the roots.  Super programme tonight on Beeb 2...hunting with eagles...and now it's time for it to go off...garden watering again, food and my real book at bedtime.  Another scorcher today but it's turned into a gentle evening with still a fair amount of heat lingering.  I've just put the mosquito tablet in the electric plug, the water went off and now it's on again....LN...All's good in my littlw world.....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 18, 2017, 5:38pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 18th September

It was dark when I woke up and thee was a super view of the moon and above it was Venus...according to the internet.  It was difficult focusing it but eventually managed to catch the pair of them.  The rest of the sky was full of stars and its due to the fact that there's so little light pollution when I live.  I made it back to bed and didn't get  out again until the sun was up and it was obvious that it was going to stay there for the rest of the day and it did.  I took coffee out to the terrace and my scruffy woodpecker was strutting his stuff on the lawn.  I suppose it's easier than clinging on to a tree and bashing hell out of it.

I took my neighbours photo round at about eight fifteen and she was insistent that I got paid for my work.  I had to shout her and become really straight faced telling her that I didn't want money.  Mine is not a photographic studio.  I was taken into the inner sanctum and shown her gallery of family that have moved on to a higher plane and she burst into tears so I ended up consoling as well as telling her that I didn't want money for the work.  I left her and went over to Avatar's house and we sat in the garden with her daughter-in-law who is usually in bed at this time.  They're on a mission to get things sorted...she is taking my Avatar away to Germany tomorrow for the winter but I've been invited to go and experience their life in Germany and are quite proud of the fact that they have Ikea within walking distance....what a temptation.  As we sat in the garden, mu photo neighbour came over with four eggs from her chickens for my work and Haciber joined us complaining that she thought she had the flu starting.  I told her to stay on the wall and not come near... I don't want a summer cold...always the worst...  

About a week or so ago I was clearing the old daisy stalks and I felt something slide down the side of my little nail finger.  I couldn't see anything so I ignored it but it began to feel tender so I started worrying it, prodding and poking as you do and this morning I eventually got the little blighter out.  It was only a thin sliver but obviously my body finally rejected it...and it feels like it's on the mend already...Sudocreme and a bandage to the rescue.  I played around in the garden with a bonfire and moving more of the stones from round the rose at the bottom of the garden. I cleared one wheelbarrow and the second one is laden but the temperature was hotting up so I wasn't out there for long.  I watered the pots but the water pressure is down and according to the neighbours there's a hole in the pipe further along but by tonight, the pressure had gone down considerably...we have no water.  I've got bottles so there's no problem but I'll be down to the spring in the morning.  

I've had a very lazy afternoon and done nothing except read and sleep.  I did mange to get some mince out of the freezer intending to do something with it but it's found its way into the freezer.  The crickets are belting out the night time music along with the frogs down by the lake.  LN....Supper might not be happening tonight....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 19, 2017, 4:11pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 19th September

So last night I couldn't water the garden...the water was off completely so that trickle had dried up completely.  Not strictly true....it was gushing somewhere but not down the pipe and in my direction.  It was dark when I surfaced this morning and I was out there to see if I could catch the moon and Venus again.  Venus was there but no moon...I was just so lucky to catch it yesterday.  I was out on the terrace for seven thirty  and despite the sun being out there was a chill in the air which I was pleased about.  There was no chance of watering the garden...the water was still off.  My Avatar came round and handed me the keys to her house...she goes tonight and I'm the custodian.  I said that I would be checking under the mattress for any money that she's left and she said to check her money box first and she reminded me what it looked like.  It's our joke...

I sorted the water bottles out and intended to go up to the spring at the top of the village to fill them up.  Firstly though I headed in to Djebel and had to take a diversion round the back of the old school...the road was up and men were down the hole. First stop was to pay my internet, I normally pay for ten months and get the year but I'd been told that the rate had gone up and  I got very confused when she tried to tell me how much and even she was getting confused with the new tariffs.  She got her calculator out and I have to pay only two leva difference from last year....so I said yes before she recalculated.  I paid my home phone bill, round to the supermarket , bought two large bottles of water and headed for the diversion back into the village but by this time the road was back to normal so I parked up, got the camera out just to see what they were doing.  I didn't stay too long...they weren't looking too happy about it.  The electric provider stopped for a chat and I though something else was going to fail...false alarm...everything is working even the water now.

I've watered the garden already...everything was looking very 'crispy' and it's going to be my first job tomorrow.  We need rain.  The kitchen is calling me to do something with the mince and I think it's going to be a home-made hamburger.  No need to go up to the spring unless this is just a temporary repair and we'll see in the morning.  LN...Time to change venue....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 20, 2017, 5:39pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 20th September

It was a night for sleeping on top of the quilt with the sheet...it was a hot one.  Having said that the dawn was gentle, the sun came up behind the clouds and eventually broke through.  I went out to the terrace to have my coffee and it was quite cool out there but not uncomfortable.  I was joined by Scruffy my woody foraging in the grass again and eventually he made his way to the tea tree half way up the garden and with the lens on top magnification I managed to catch him.  He did oblige though by moving on to my fir tree and it was so close I could here him moving about.  He was joined by one of the others on the top of the tree but then they both suddenly took off and left the tree to the pied fly catcher who bounded between the washing line. the tree and the ground.  I must have been out there for about half an hour just absorbing the activity.

Boiled eggs for breakfast...I read somewhere that they will keep you going all day and they did.  I managed to weed the path down by the big wall and dug it over so that the water can be absorbed quicker and it doesn't run off.  I moved on to the bottom of the garden and put a little bit of effort into the stony area that I'm clearing but I didn't stay out there long.  I was perspiring so I came in and got settled into my book.  I posted a few pickies to Facebook, did my Sudoku, got my head down and was out there at five with hose in hand and got the garden watered early and it sure needed it.  Despite valiant efforts I wasn't able to capture clearly the very large humming moths that came round the garden at sundown.  The camera shutter stayed shut for too long so the image is not clear at all.  Unfortunately the Canon cable is knacked and the new one should be arriving tomorrow...it makes it difficult to get them on to the computer.

So I've got the rest of the mince for tonight...it's been a fruit day after the eggs for breakfast.  I want to take a few pounds off...the activity levels have been down with the high temperatures that we've had.  Sorry for those suffering in the UK for moaning about it....it's been a long time without rain.  LN....Eggheads calls....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 21, 2017, 4:49pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 21st September

Very disturbed night...at four this morning there was thunder, lightning and torrential rain.  I normally leave the curtains and the door open but I was pleased I'd closed the door last night.  The wind was howling, the rain was lashing and so I snuggled down and managed to get off until seven again and all we were left with were clouds.  There was just a gig band of grey with a reddish twinge over towards Turkey but still a fair amount of blue out there.  I took my coffee out on to the terrace and managed to find a dry cushion to put on the metal chair, picked up the secateurs and dead headed the zinnias so that they keep flowering.

I made a phone call so that my wood could be ordered and decided to take a trip into Djebel to have some cash in the house to pay for it if it was delivered today.  As I got the Beast out of the drive I noticed one of the local ladies walking towards the house so I cleared the back seat guessing that she was off somewhere which entailed a fairly long walk,  I approached her as she got nearer the gate and asked her if she wanted a lift anywhere.  Her little face lit up and I helped her into the back seat,,,she was off to visit her sister in one of the local villages.  She was over from Turkey, had gone out for the seven o'clock bus which in fact left at six thirty and had waited in the bus shelter but had had no luck with anyone heading in her direction.  We carried on towards Djebel and as we hit the main road there was another man that I usually found on the road somewhere so I slowed down and he got in and nothing was really said.  We carried on to the Ustra turnoff and the lady asked to be dropped off and the village she wanted was two kilometres along the road and I was tempted to take her.  As I was about to pull away, a car tuned into the way that she wanted to go and slowed down so at least she had her second lift.  I carried on to Djebel, dropped off the man and popped into the car shop and asked for a tin of yellow spray paint and my student's mum thought that I was serious.  It was when I asked for the 'Taxi' sign that she realised I was joking.

I parked up, got my money out of the cash point and stopped off at the supermarket for onions and potatoes and a couple of cartons of fruit juice and was home for ten fifteen.  By now the sun had escaped the clouds, the sky was blue and there was heat in the sun and I sat out on the terrace again with a coffee and contemplated what the rest of the day held and it wasn't going to be much.  I was tired due to the disturbed night so on went the computer, Sudoku, Freecell and a phone call to the UK.  The rest of the afternoon was a bit of a blur and I settled into my book and watch the storm gathering.  The weather forecast was that there would be rain by four which I'd more or less ignored but they were right.  I put supper in the oven settling for roasted onions, potato and chicken wings and served it up one and a half hours later.  A full tummy required rest so I nodded off for an hour or so and topped up my energy banks.  The upside is that I don't have to water the garden again and everything is looking  so much better...the crispiness is going.

Fingers crossed that we don't have any more eruptions, the clouds are now only on the perimeter of my hillside home and let's hope it stays that way.  LN...Fingers and toes crossed...LN

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Elsa Peters
September 22, 2017, 3:57pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 22nd September

So again we had the rain last night but it was still a warm one.  I slept on top of the duvet again but at four this morning I was awake, cold, so I snuggled down and slept through until seven thirty.  The mists were hanging in the valley over the rivers and the wind was blowing it  until it dissipated.  I hung about in bed until just after eight and eventually made it down to the terrace with coffee in hand.  There was bird activity in the garden but no woodpeckers...I reckon they'd had breakfast before I could get out there with the camera and disturb them.

Boiled eggs for breakfast again and I had enough toast left to smother it with apricot jam.  I cleared the kitchen and sorted out the rubbish and headed down the garden armed with a box of matches.  I don't know whether it was the wind that was responsible or a very large dog but the burning barrel was on its side.  I put it upright and noticed that there was a lot of rubbish that was only half burnt  so the fire was very reluctant to get started.  I found the polythene dug up from under the big wall and added it to the mix, some dried wood that was lying around and eventually I got a good burn going.  I did take time out though to sit on the wall on the bottom of the garden and look just how far I've come.  Amazing how the garden has perked up after a couple of heavy showers.

I then went back to the rose and sloe tree plot and wheeled another couple of barrows of stones under the corner of the little walls.  I'm still trying to think of the plants that I want to put down there...I'll wait and see which cuttings take.  I was out there until two, came in for a drink and suddenly realised that the sky had gone incredibly dark very quickly, the wind has started to blow things around and it had started to rain.  I made my way outside and collected up the tools of my trade, checked the bonfire then came in and got out of my wet t-shirt and into a warm sweater.  I quickly buzzed round the house to close doors and windows before the inside was destroyed and settled down with my book for a while but surprise, surprise....no nodding off.  

I have had an early supper of the rest of the chicken wings from last night and am not sure what I'm doing tomorrow.  My student's father wanted to go into Kardjali....I've heard nothing from him so I'll check in the morning.  According to the weatherman...no rain is forecast for tomorrow so I'll be back gardening.  LN....Another Herculean task....LN

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September 23, 2017, 4:39pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 23rd September

A day of rest....I couldn't see the mountains again this morning and it took ages for the mist to clear.  A seven thirty start and it was nine before I went out to carry on digging at the bottom of the garden.  It was really difficult.  It's naturally stony down there and whenever I put in my garden fork I had to jiggle it about to get any depth with my fully clogged foot and I was bringing up shale.  I was out with my sweater on...it was a cool morning but by the time I'd worked for about thirty minutes I was stripping off and down to PJ top and fleecy trousers.   I stopped for coffee and to collect hammer and nails and thought I'd use the old wood at the bottom of the garden to make a surround for the new bed but it was so hard to sink the supports into the ground that  I gave up and decided to edging with stone blocks.  It's part done but I've realised that I going to have to dig the bed over a couple of times and put loads of compost and manure into it to get anything to grow.  

I made it out again briefly but then came in and started to watch the women's world cycling championship. I was doing OK but suddenly the internet dropped on the last lap so I switched it off and headed for the kitchen to make the last of the chicken wings into a rice and curry mix which was ready at about five thirty.  By this point the internet was resumed at really fast speed and I watched the end of the race.

Time to get the tools in...I've not had the same enthusiasm today....it's the ground quality.  If I knew that it was only builder's rubble and underneath it there was soil I would be OK...but I'm realising now that there isn't and it will need building.  LN....My Herculean task continues....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 24, 2017, 4:20pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 24th September

Six thirty start, the sky was a wonderful red and later blue and pink and suddenly the sun was up.  Mist handing around in the valleys and a joy to behold.  I love mornings out here apart from when someone steals my mountains...   Sorted the kitchen and the fridge out...there were one or two things lingering that shouldn't have been and lobbed them over the wall for the animals.  I made it down to the bread van....the ladies were there and I had two invitations for coffee which I declined and one man that asked if I'd been to the UK since he hadn't seen me about.  I came to the conclusion that he might not have been about...they have the garden next to my little house but it appears that his wife does most of the work...normal out here.  Toast for breakfast and then to horse so to speak.

I eventually got out to the garden at ten and was in at eleven with my Sudoku book and pen in hand.  I used the excuse that I needed water but I hadn't got much inclination for the task in hand.  I was out there by eleven and had the plan formulated.  I decided that I was going to abandon the work round the sloe tree and extend the little garden that I put in a couple of years ago.  I treated it like an 'in box exercise'....if I go this going and planted up then something would be happening while I got on with the perimeters of the rest of the ground.  It's not a little area to sort.....but I need digestible chunks.  I was in at twelve thirty again but this time I took to my book and yes...you've guessed it.  I nodded off for just over an hour and it appears I needed it although I didn't think so.  Out with the book again and another couple of games and at four I was out there again and I've just come in.  The garden is extended, the plants are in, the bonfire is moved and is chugging along nicely. I had to really did for victory to clear the stone from the bed and ended up using the technique of saturating it with water to loosen the stone and then brute force and ignorance,  Done and dusted,

No thoughts on supper tonight so far....perhaps inspiration will hit me later.  I'm more likely to settle for a good soak and book at bedtime.  Kardjali tomorrow to sort out some admin and it will be a trip round the cheapy shops I expect.....don't need any other shopping except maybe...a few packets of the equivalent of chocolate coated peanuts from Lidl.  LN...Time to check out TV Catchup.....LN  

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Elsa Peters
September 25, 2017, 4:39pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 25th September

Six thirty start but there was an awakening around two this morning when I woke up, realised that I'd fallen asleep playing Candy Crush....the light was still on and the game was in progress and waiting for input.  I closed up the Kindle, switched off the light and it had to wait until this morning for me to continue.  I'd gone into the bath and chilled out watching The Child in Time....not sure if I enjoyed it or not and was going to download the book to my Kindle but reading the reviews...I'll settle for the adaptation.

Lovely red sky this morning which got more vivid as we headed for sun-up but it disappeared so quickly, the sky went grey and there was very little else to see but at least I saw some of it.  I intended washing my hair this morning but I couldn't be bothered, I was heading for Kardjali so I dressed for the occasion with one of the jackets from my cheapy shop.  Since it was going to be formal discussions with a couple of government departments I wanted to look fairly professional and presentable and it worked.  The jacket went on, boots went on ....and I was ready for them to bring it on.

I parked up at my usual place and paid over one lev and telling the man that I was off to see the Finance Department and said I would settle up with his later and he understood what I meant.  I'd received a latter from them on Friday, had scanned it and run it through a OCR reader and fortunately knew what I was up against.  For the last eight years I'd submitted the same documents before the end of March..  This year there was an added bonus in that I had to go to the Statistic office and I tried to explain that the company was only formed to purchase the houses as was the law in those days.  The ladies in the office were more interested in what I was earning and I told them nothing. since I was a pensioner and whether I actually accepted money for people staying in my house.  Unbelievable...they really hadn't got a clue and the upshot was...there was another form that hadn't raised it's ugly head for eight years but now I'd been 'invited' to visit the department within the next seven days.  And here I was.  The first office was brilliant and they even put me in touch with a lady who had a smattering of English.  She prepared the forms for me, said it was disgusting that there was nothing to differentiate between active and dormant companies and told me where my next port of call was.  I walked to the next venue but failed to pass my cheapy shop and managed to pick up a hag from Gap, two cardigans for my students, a dress for the baby which might be made into a book cover or a cushion and a couple of sweaters for me.  The cost...three leva...which roughly translated is one pound forty.  They held on to them and I picked them up on the walk back to the car park.

Now this office was distinctly hostile.  I was directed to the cash desk, handed over forty three leva to submit the forms and then up to the office and this is where the fun started.  I told her to use simple words with present tenses but she didn't.  I asked her to write down what was required from the first office, headed back with my instructions and we eventually managed to print the forms.  Now Princess and her husband are also on the company and their signatures were required which has never been necessary before....so she instructed me to sign for them, said that no one would check and she was write.  I did add pp...as is 'on behalf of' which was my let out should it be questioned at a later date.  I returned to the second office, the documents were accepted, computerised and I was told to go back to the first office with my stamped form.  I went back to my English speaking lady, she viewed the form and said that it was mine to keep and I questioned why I was there.  She advised me to go home, she was not going to apply a fine because she thought that would be unfair and she assured me that there would be no follow up.  And it only took four and a half hours to sort it.  Next year I shall have all my ducks in a row.

Quick stop off at Lidl on the way home and fuel, back up the lane and home for three thirty and knackered.  Ham baguette for a late lunch and I put some chicken legs in to cook while I was chilling after the gruelling morning.  I'll be popping gifts in the next time I'm in town.  I know they're only doing their jobs but some just don't do it...they think that volume levels improve understanding.  Cheapy clothes washed and dried and tomorrow I shall meet my student for lunch if she's available and if not...I have daffodil bulbs that need planting...that should keep me busy.  On the third photo it looks like something is either sk-ing on the top of my plum tree or something is on fire....I only noticed it when it was on the PC.....I must ask some questions.     LN...Tele-time.....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 26, 2017, 3:03pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 26th September

So after an early night last night I was awake by four thirty but I think it was the rain that woke me in the first place.  Thunder. lightening and pouring rain.  I eventually got off again and it was just before eight when I came to the second time.  I was cold but I hung around in PJ's until ten and eventually got dressed in warm clothes and the internet was up and down like a bride's nightie so I switched it all off since the thunder had started again and I set up camp on the sofa.  

At eleven I gave in and lit the fire.  I expected it to be slow since the chimney had not been used but no...it was soon up and running and I waited for the first time for the water to go round the system so that I could check out the radiators...and it was a goer.  I rescued the outside cushions and put them under the balcony to drip dry, put the heavy duty plastic sheet in the wooden unit by the door so that the rain was held back from the pallet doorstep where the shoes get dumped.  A lake had started by the front gates where the leaves had blocked the drainage holes so I was out there with a section of hose pipe and it soon drained away.  I went back to the desk and started to take pictures of the garden activity.  Woody was out there clinging on to the tree but then decided that it was less precarious on the ground and the very shy jay was parading on the wall until he sensed my presence and he shot off.  The starlings were practising their aerial displays and shot by the bottom of the garden when I was sitting at my desk and I was really lucky to catch them.

Haciber came round with spinach and onion pancakes and sat down which is unusual...she doesn't normally stay but was fascinated by the fire and the warmth throughout the house thanks to the radiators.  They have a single room and once you leave it, you get cold.  I washed her plate, put a couple of bananas on it for her to take home and she commented on the fact that I had a couple of scented tee-lights burning to make the house cheery.  I opened a packed and gave her half a dozen to take home with her bundling it all in a carrier so the other neighbours didn't spot the goodies but having said that...not many people were out and about...too wet.

I've got cold chicken for supper...I cooked four legs last night.  The weather has at last cleared up...we have a touch of blue but I've got the feeling that it could go either way.  I'm doing the blog early...just in case the thunder comes back again and I lose the internet.  So daffodils didn't happen today but the ground should be really soft to get them in tomorrow if the rain stays away.  LN....That chicken's calling....LN

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

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Wednesday 27th September

So a silly night again...I was awake at three so it was out with the book and I was reading until four. I'd closed the curtains last night and the side window and I think I was out of oxygen with the fire going all day yesterday so I re-opened it and eventually went off again until just before eight.   I was intending to go down to get fresh bread but when the van arrived I was still in PJ's so I resorted to the freezer where I managed to stash one.  It was a horrible morning...it wasn't raining but I it didn't seem far away.  I togged up with warm clothing, found my old gardening boots and was determined to get out there and do 'something'.  By the time I was dressed and raring to go, it was raining but it was on with the leather waistcoat for protection and to keep out the wind and headed for the little house.  

I've repotted the orange tree that had roots popping out the bottom, the gardenia has been dug up and I now have two plants instead of one, some of the day lily babies are not in different parts of the garden and two pots of the oriental lilies are being tested.  Two huge pots now have daffodils in them for the spring and the lots of the others are in the main garden.  I headed down to the new garden and cleared some of the stone that was surrounding it, started the bonfire but without much success since everything was so wet  and eventually came in at six.  I'm knacked, but I feel I've had a good day and finished off by washing down the terraces, bringing in some of the outside furniture and making a few steps towards winter.

Unfortunately there was  no let up in the weather at all.  It did stop raining but it's been damp and miserable and the clouds have covered the mountains and now it's started again.  Not sure about supper...it will be what I can find.  LN...And then a bath...LN

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Elsa Peters
September 28, 2017, 3:47pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday  28th September

Oh what a lovely bath...I was watching Strictly roundup but TV Catch-up kept freezing, the sound was out of sync with the picture so I switched it off and headed for the bathroom.  I managed to get my hair washed so got my book out and sat on the sofa to take some of the moisture out of it before I hit the sack.  Five start again and it was the book out again until six when I headed down to the kitchen to make coffee.  I'd not cleared up from last night's fish fingers and potato croquettes done in the oven and in fact I'd not washed up at all yesterday so the kitchen was and still is pristine....just as I like it.

I went on to the PC and I suddenly decided that I was going to lay the rug that I'd bought about a month ago.  I was still in my PJ's at this point so I had to take the computer apart and move as much furniture as I could from the top landing and it will look OK eventually...it has to work itself flat, it's been rolled up for ages.  I was in the process of sorting out the cables that always end up like spaghetti and my painter came to the door and he was querying out telephone conversation a couple of days ago.  He said he didn't understand.  When I came back from Kardjali on Monday there was a pair of garden loppers leaning against the fly screen.  Now I'd assumed that my painter had returned the pair that I'd given to him and that was where the confusion lay.  I thought about it for a while and it suddenly hit me that I'd bought a pair about two years ago and given them to the Librarian and she must have returned them.   Riddle solved.    So back to cable sorting, computer all systems go, cables all tidied and I phoned  the Librarian to thank her and we shall probably be meeting up early next week for a catch up.

Washed and dressed and despite the weather I was determined to continue with the bottom of the garden.  I'd put a load into the washing machine so pegged it out and I thought it might end up in Greece.  Working away I thought it was about to throw it down so it scooped up the washing and it's on the airer in the bathroom and most of it was dry.  Problem was, once in I settled down on the sofa with Soda Crush and I could feel my eyes going so I steeled myself and headed out and gave myself a deadline of six and I stuck to it.  I could do with lighting the fire...it's another cold damp evening.  The house isn't cold but it's the soothing glow of the fire.  Not many pickies tonight...I've been too busy.  LN...Pot luck for supper again....LN

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Elsa Peters
September 29, 2017, 4:27pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 29th September

Silly night again...I was awake at four, read until five and back to sleep until seven thirty.  Cold, miserable, not raining but not a glimmer of sun, blue sky or anything connected with late summer.  Not that it is now...Autumn has been declared and boy has it arrived.  It was twenty one degrees in the house so the house maintained it's temperature but it was a really long morning in my PJ's.  I forgot...supper last night was very exceptional for me.  I'd forgotten that I's removed a joint of lamb that was given to my by one of my neighbours and it had languished in the fridge overnight.  To keep it company on the plate I'd put potatoes in the oven to roast, peas and gravy finished it off.  When I took the lamb out of the oven I was unsure how to cut it up...I wasn't sure what it was so hasn't a clue where the bone lay so I chunked it.  It was really delicious and the potatoes really crispy and as for the peas...they were normal peas.  

So the rest of my morning.  I'd looked at the bookcase on the landing which hadn't got any place for books and had become a bit of a jumble.  It is now sorted....the shoe boxes have been sorted and labelled, the paper stack has been ordered, old Christmas cards have been put into one box working on the assumption that Bulgarian post may not deliver all that is sent so I have some to display.  I've also been through the training material that I used for my student and sorted it into degrees of difficulty ready for my next little one.  I eventually got dressed at two thirty and the pop up container is full of things that now need burning but that's for another day.

At four I took the remains of the lamb out of the fridge and carved the rest of the meat from it.  I worked out that it was from the neck but the shape of the bones and there was enough to mix with gravy to make a shepherds out of it.  Potatoes peeled. boiled, mashed with butter, slathered over the meat and into the oven with it.  I went back up stairs to carry on with the final sorting and suddenly my telephone rang so I went down to answer it  and my painter with a buddy were in the yard and it was him phoning.  Bit of a strange request ...did I have any diesel to which the answer had to be no.  The friend had a diesel and gas car and didn't think he had enough to get to Djebel so I offered to wait for a telephone call from them if they got stuck and bail them out by driving them to Djebel.  There wasn't a phone call so I'm guessing that they made it.  The shepherds pie came out of the oven and the potato was really crispy and the pans are now soaking to remove the last few crispy bit that I couldn't.  I followed it with chocolate ice cream.

I've lit the fire tonight but am using the old wood that was taken from the hillside last year and now I'm settled for the evening.  LN...A day of a different sort of achievement ...LN
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Elsa Peters
September 30, 2017, 3:26pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 30th September

Seven start this morning and it was a cold damp start again and it's stayed that way all day.  I was down to the bread van and gave one of my ladies a hug and then two other declared that it was favouritism so I hugged the other two that were down there and threatened the van driver with the same treatment but controlled myself.  I ended up with two loaves, one for the freezer and a cheesy bread which was my breakfast.  I'd got dressed into outdoor clothes but I've been indoor most of the day.  I did venture out for wood for the fire and also got the chop saw going when I became creative in the third bedroom.  Last year I'd converted the old wash stand into a sewing table and I'd had visions that the new multi-drawer chest that I've just put together would fit underneath it and would store my sewing cottons and bits and pieces.  Guess what...the unit was just an inch shorted so I had the brain wave that I could put blocks of wood under the legs of the sewing table and then the unit would fit underneath.....and now it does.  Five of the drawers are full and one spare which is destined for my knitting needles and crochet hooks and now I have a free sliding basket that's been ear-marked for the lavender bag material.

I decided that I wouldn't be going anywhere...it was too damp and cold so I lit the fire and have been feeding it all day.  This afternoon I was bored so I got out my felt tips and completed one of the pictures from my mindfulness crayon book that I bought a couple of years ago.  Very therapeutic....  and I've got a whole book to go.  I also decided to book my flights to the UK for Christmas before the prices go up as the winter draws on.  Done and dusted and the price is very reasonable including booking my seat both ways at the front of the plane and on the aisle.  So supper is in...chicken wings...my favourite and my new found favourite waiting to go in...croquette potatoes.  Strictly tonight but I'm currently watching the rowing ....come on Britain.  LN.....Fire needs attending to.....LN

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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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