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Elsa Peters
November 10, 2017, 4:11pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 10th November

A six of the clock start so not bad at all.  I lingered in the pit until eight, couldn't see the mountains at all, wall to wall fog but the house was warm enough.  I'd put a fairly big log on last night before I'd laid down my weary head and most of it had gone so that must have gone on until about three this morning.  I put the washing away, didn't bother getting dressed straight away my PJ's were cosy and warm.  I lobbed out the stale bread for the birds and a can of cannelloni beans that well passed the sell by date so goodness knows where they'd been hiding.  I'll check on the livestock tomorrow.  Poached eggs for breakfast with more coffee and I settled down on the computer for my daily dose of sudoku and a couple of games of Freecell.  Again I had lots of junk offers of things you could never envisage...don't these people ever get bored of creating stupid email addresses and promoting ridiculous products.  I eventually got dresses in clothes that I could go into town in at a minutes notice but there was no phone call from the garage so I gave them a ring.  The tyres hadn't arrived so no joy so I settled into my Russian history latest.  There were a few on Messenger that I responded to and Mrs D of S suggested that I lit my wood burner to make the sun come out as she had washing to dry.  I told her I had firelighters at the ready and we'd see if it worked...I didn't light it but there was a small breakthrough at around twelve and at one thirty I was sitting in my stairwell in the sun and the temperature reached twenty eight degrees.  Free central heating.

I got my head down this afternoon for no other reason than I could.  I had the urge to venture out and cut some more of the long logs into wood burner size lengths but the urge didn't last long.  I'm still waiting for a man that said he would and hasn't been seen or heard of since.  Tova e Bulgaria.....   Let's see how I feel tomorrow but I really need morning sun to shunt some life and enthusiasm into me.  I've just checked the long term weather....it looks like I have to wait until the twentieth of November for anything that hits at good weather....

Six my time and it's an omelette tonight for supper.  I've got a couple of spicy sausages in the fridge that will make a superb filling along with an onion and a sprinkling of cheese.  Simple supper and ready in quicksticks...no lingering longer than I have to these days.  LN...I'm kitchen bound...LN



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Elsa Peters
November 11, 2017, 4:39pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 11th November

Seven start and there was a likelihood that there was going to be a sunrise.  There was but it didn't hang around for long. the clouds came over and it was a bit hit and miss all day.  It's been a cold one, I did manage to catch the morning with the camera but I was soon in again and back into bed with a coffee.  I was out by eight, washed and dressed by ten passed and watched the ravens bombing the magpies.  I'd put some old bread out for the birds, looked out of the bedroom window and saw a cat out there eating the bird food and a magpie waiting for it to finish.  By the time the cat had it's fill ...nothing left for the birds.  At one point there were about thirty ravens in the wild plum tree over the cat but as soon as I went out onto the balcony they all flew away leaving only the cat.  I also noticed a stray cow in the lane between my extended front wall and my neighbours garden.  It appeared to have no way to get out and I'm wondering how it got in there.  The owner has blocked the lane to stop them getting into my neighbour's garden...mine is now stock proof so no worry to me but I felt sorry for the thing.  I managed to flag down the farmer's son in the tractor and told him about it.

Down to the kitchen and the first job was to quarter and slice the grapefruit. The slices are soaking and I'll be making the marmalade tomorrow morning.  Breakfast of sliced spicy sausage with fried egg and fried bread and watched a little of morning TV while I was eating it.  Such a bad habit but there's no one to get upset about it.  Cleared the kitchen, filled up the log container, laid the fire for later and had a burn up.  Surprisingly it went first time and everything was down to ash.  Just a little bit of work in the garden.  I went round with the fork removing the thistles that have germinated slinging them over the wall since that's where the seeds came from.  Next I dug up the dwarf zinnia and sat in the sun removing the seed heads....they're now in an envelope for next year.  I cut a branch from the Gaura lindheimeri that I bought in Greece and I've taken eight cuttings.  I love this plant....it's flowered ever since I bought it in June and is still flowering now...just beautiful.  I've also taken cuttings from the geraniums....the existing are looking a little bedraggled.  

I came in at five, lit the fire and I'm settled in for the night.  I'm not hungry so far so I'll see how the mood takes me later.  Strictly tonight....let's see who's for the off.  Marmalade on the agenda for tomorrow, I've sorted out the jars so they'll need sterilising while the fruit is boiling.  According to the recipe...it's going to need attending to for about two hours...I just hope it's worth it and I'll let you know.  I've just checked...the cow has gone and now I can rest easy.  LN....Time to throw a log on...LN



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Elsa Peters
November 12, 2017, 4:52pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 12th November

Six start so I thought I might as well make use of it.  I put the pot on to boil and it was attending to the kitchen for the next two and a half hours.  I don’t normally have much success with jam and the likes…I end up reading the recipe several times over, panic about the setting point and whether or not the jars are adequately sterilised or whether I’ll poison someone if I give them as gifts.  Anyway….the process was underway.

It was up to the boil by seven and the first session without the sugar was for forty minutes.  The lid was on for the first part and I managed a rolling boil, the sugar went in and the lid came off for the next hour.  I’d taken to removing a hair that had got attached to my bracelet and the watched pot was no longer watched and boiled over leaving the most marvellous smell of toffee apples and candy floss and a beggar of a job to remove the burnt sugar when I’d finished.  So into the little house I went and brought back the jars that I’d sorted yesterday.  I washed them, poured boiling water over them and gave them half an hour in the oven at 100 degrees along with the lids.  Eventually I got to removing the pan from the heat and filling the jars with the product of my endeavours.  Three big jars, one small and one half jar, the contents of which is going to be consumed over the next few days.  I had it on toast for breakfast and the flavour is good but I was really scraping out the pot and ended up with some very caramelised offerings.  

It was ten by the time that I’d finished the kitchen and cooker and I was just having five minutes on the computer when a neighbour’s daughter arrived reminding me that there was a baby party at one today and I’d forgotten all about it.  She mentioned that she was looking for rosehips to dry to make tea and I’ve got loads at the bottom of the garden so we went down and stripped the rose bush and off she went.

I was ready with boots blacked by one and heading down for the coach to take us to the event.  It was at the usual restaurant, standard fare, a chocolate, soup, chicken and salad and a slice of very sickly cake and a baby that obviously didn’t want to be there and making a lot of noise.  Back on the coach and home by three and I settled in to watch the tennis and cycling until the internet went off.  I’ve just lit the fire and typing this up in Word and hoping that it comes back on…I have to find out who’s going home in Strictly….it could be one of several…a few failures last night,,,it’s sorting the sheep out as you might say.  I had a phone call from Bekir this afternoon and I’m picking him up in the morning.  We need to find out the materials that are required for the porch and order the windows from Momchilgrad.  He can also sort my wood for me and I can stack.  I should be a full on day for both of us and Sally can join the party later in the week.  Internet is back up so I want to post before it goes down again...if it goes down again.  LN...Time to chill....LN



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Elsa Peters
November 13, 2017, 6:48pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 13th November

Six start and  it was my favourite hojja with the CD disk at full volume that woke me up.  I just hate the fact that he's using a CD when there are a couple of the real things that sing their little hearts out each morning.  There wasn't a glimmer of light when he kicked off but I left the curtains closed until there was a little of the morning showing.  Coffee and back to bed and played one of my games until I thought it best that I jump to...I was picking up Bekir at eight and I had a bathroom to clean before I set off at seven thirty.  Bekir was checking to see if there was a water leak under the bath so with his nose at the base of the toilet I cleaned the floor and washed it over.  

No breakfast for me and he was waiting to meet me with his chainsaw at the ready.  We drove back and discussed what I wanted him to do and we were soon getting the programme for the day sorted out.  Firstly the porch was sketched out and measured up ready to order the windows later or at least get a quote.  We drove to Momchilgrad and the windows are ordered and they've promised delivery for later this week or early next.  Good lads.  We stopped off in Momchilgrad for cheesy bread and a banichka for Bekir but unfortunately they forgot the cheese in mine so I had it later lashed with butter and my new jam.  His next task was to measure up the metal required for completing the railings for the top of the new wall and fortunately he found quite a lot of the metal on the first floor of the little house.  On to the wood with chainsaw and sliced up the rest from the garage and now it's down to the painter to finish it off.  We went to the materials yard but unfortunately they have it but we didn't manage to get a price for it so we've got to go back tomorrow and hopefully it will be delivered tomorrow.  

I stopped off at Mrs D of S's on the way back and had some cuddles from the little one who was determined to climb up my frame and when in my arms wanted to go down again.  I left her about to 'speak' to daddy on the internet and I drove in to Djebel to top up with fuel for the beast and some for me...grapes and chicken wings and now the grapes are finished and half the chicken wings.  Early night for me...I'm into 'work mode' now and sorry but no photos tonight....it's been a day of action.  LN....Washing up and bed...LN
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Elsa Peters
November 14, 2017, 4:45pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 14th November

Silly five start, read until six then with the light on cat-napped until just before seven and then up, dressed, out and at 'em.  I did managed toast for breakfast before I left and then it was over to pick up Sally and Bekir today.  We had to go down to Sally's house, he rather antiquated welding machine is so heavy that I had to back down the track as far as I could, we walked down to the house and it was put on a little trailer and Bekir pushed it to the Breast.  It took both of them to heave it in.  Down to the materials yard and ended up buying and bringing the metal bar home with us and it ended up through the roof and the car was fully protected against the rust with cardboard and a couple of carrier bags from Lidl.  I remembered to buy some work gloves for the men but that was after they'd loaded the metal into the Beast...bit late but they had them for the rest of the day.

Sally was brought up to speed and assigned his first job and it was as per normal....on the wrong end of a wheelbarrow and getting ready to make cement for the wall.  Sally checked out how many concrete blocks we had and we didn't have enough.  We'd got plenty of the smaller ones but only five of the twenty five centimetre ones so that was a trip into Djebel to find some which fortunately we managed to do.  We only needed twenty.  We got back and Sally was chugging on and was happy now that he had enough to finish the job...my telephone went and it was the garage to tell me that the tyres had arrived so that meant another trip into Djebel to get them done.  I am now fully legal.  The men had also asked me to bring back twenty five kilograms of var but the girl didn't understand so that entailed a telephone call to Bekir and it was soon sorted.  

So Bekir has cut the material for the four panels for the wall and the oddments left over are going to be enough to do the small rails for the little house terrace,  It's not going to stop anyone falling over but it's a warning that it's a pretty long drop...only normally achieved once.  There was an in depth discussion about the overhang on the inside and outside of the wall that's going in and where the windows are going to be installed on the wall.  We eventually settled on a value and Sally has been making the moulds for the overhangs so tomorrow that will be done which is another step towards completion.   I'll be choosing the tiles soon .

We took the back lane to the Greece road and there back lane to the men's village and it knocked five minutes off the journey, I think.  I became a taxi on my way back.  One of the old farmhands was walking home so I stopped and picked him up and I also saw my painter walking up the road on his way home so it was a trip down to his.  I mentioned that the wood had now all been chainsawed to chopping lengths and he reminded me that it's his job to do....which saved me mentioning it.  I lit the fire before we left so the house was warm to come back to.  I really must get into the habit of getting food in the slow cooker....it gets more difficult to decided what to have when you come in at just after six.  So early night for me...I've got some sleep catch-up to get on with.  LN...Same again tomorrow please....weather and work wise.....LN



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Elsa Peters
November 15, 2017, 5:37pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 15th November

Silly night last night...I fell asleep sitting up at the computer. I woke up and watched the chefs cutting the cheeks out of cods'heads, realised that I'd developed at some time a stiff neck so I found out the Deep Heat and applied it thoroughly.  Off to bed and the next awakening was at four so I got my book out and knocked off two percent of the Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart.  Back to sleep and it was seven and then it was all systems go in time to pick up the men.  It was another drab, dank morning so I took the short easy route down the back lane and along the Greek road.  The were ready and armed with various pieces of equipment.  One day on the job working without and then they kick in with what they really need.

I meandered around a little this morning but eventually got my act together and went out and cleared some of the weeds from the new wall.  The seem to be developed really deep roots and I'm not sure that the winter will kill them off.  I've cleared most of the wild roses from the walls so that the men won't be hindered when they come to put up the  railings.  I've also taken some weigela cuttings and they;re safely in the little house.  I've just remembered though that I've left my tools out....I had fairly important decisions to make over the building work that's going on.  Sally was knocking up the rest of the frame for the wall concreting and Bekir was happily working on the fourth railing.  Tomorrow he's doing the little railings for the terrace and then time to start the painting.  This might be down to me...I'll see how I feel in the morning.  With that i mind I went into Kardjali this afternoon and picked up a two and a half litre of something called Three in One which is supposed to suppress rust and act as a protector,  It cost forty leva so I hope it does something.  I was also sent off for more welding rods and I think I got the wrong size despite the fact that I took a sample with me and showed it to the men in the shop.  A little of my own shopping in Lidl and Kaufland and I was home by five ready to take the men home....quick turnaround, frozen stuff into the freezer and then back down the lane which really confused the sheep dog...I've been up and down that lane six times today.

Home the hungry hunter and settled for ham in French stick with one of the ice cream sticks for desert,  I lit the fire first and it's mainly for the comfort factor....it's not really cold tonight....just damp.  Sorry no pickies...another day of activity...but I'll take some tomorrow.  Washing up, log on the fire., a book at bedtime and hopefully straight through tonight.   LN....Cross your fingers for me....LN
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Elsa Peters
November 16, 2017, 5:59pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 16th November

Lovely long sleep last night and it was six this morning when I woke up...suits me fine.  I didn't rush, I wasn't leaving until just after half seven and for some reason I was in the third bedroom which is now converted into my sewing room and my eyes fell on a snow suit that I'd bought when I was a lot younger and it had found its way over here in one of the boxes.  I thought I'd give it a try and the top was OK over pj's but no chance over a snow type sweater and as for the trousers....well they did fit when I bought them.  So to save it gathering dust I decided to send it to a good home but I'd wash in first so into the washing machine, it was cooked by the time I was due to leave but the door appeared to be jammed.  I ran the drain program to see if that would budge it but to no avail and I'd have to come back to it.

Off to pick up the men and took the main road.  Everything was damp and my lane would be alright but as for the lane to the men's village I reckoned that would be suspect.  I took photos of my ride through the villages and hills...it's a very pretty route especially at this time of year with the trees changing colour.  The men were ready for action and set to immediately, I remembered that I'd offered to run Gouldjan's mother into the doctors for an injection after yesterday's x-ray at the hospital so I went shopping while she was being attended to and bought the usual things that you do when you are filling in time but I do have a new witch's broom, very necessary since the men have knackered my other one.  A pair of socks for me. a pair of slippers for my favourite little one, paint brushes for Sally for doing the railings and a new charger for something I couldn't find the charger for.  We headed for the supermarket when she'd finished at the doctors and I'm going to have another shot at marmalade using clemantines this time...wish me luck.  I dropped her off and headed home and my next port of call was Kardjali to change the welding rods that I'd bought yesterday and to go to the window man to confirm the size of the gaps now that the building work was completed.  Bekir had received the estimate which I'd agreed to but we put to bed the door furniture and the final design which may be a little more costly but hey and I ordered the fly screen....I have a phobia about them....I'm in and they're out.  It was a quick stop off at Lidl so that Bekir could look at the instruments which were supposed to be 'on sale' but he'd got his day wrong...it's tomorrow.  I managed to sort the washing machine when I got back....a good thump on the door and the release worked so now I can add engineer to my CV.

One man painted and another welded and just before five they were ready to go home.  Two coats of paint on low wall railings and they're ready to be welded into place and only the one long one to be completed by Bekir.  They've both done well despite the weather but they were able to work inside.  Dropped them off and decided to stop off at Mrs D oi S's on the way home for a coffee and a cuddle with the little one and then homeward bound. perked up the fire, fried off a kilo of mince with onions and that will go in the fridge overnight and now ready to relax for the evening.  A productive day all round.  LN...Nicely relaxed....LN



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Elsa Peters
November 17, 2017, 5:30pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 17th November

First off ...happy birthday to my sister unfortunately no longer with us but remembered fondly.  The forsythia I bought the day before she died is thriving and has produced lots of babies.

Silly four o'clock start again but I managed to go off again until just before seven which was brilliant.  Washed, dressed and into the Beast by seven thirty more or less and set off to pick up the men.  The journey over was normal without any hiccups but as I pulled into the  parking spot in the men's village I noticed steam coming from under the bonnet so I raised the lid and the area was swamped with steam and anti-freeze.  Not a good start to the morning.  I checked the thermostat and it was up but not in the danger zone, I removed the radiator cap after about ten minutes, balanced it on the front edge and unfortunately Sally knocked it and we were now in the position of having no radiator cap.  I managed to get my hand right down to the engine protector bolted on to the underneath of the Beast but couldn't managed to get my hand on it.  Fortunately Bekir came to the rescue, managed to undo the four bolts that were securing the plates and  we found it in the leaves that dropped down as well.  I telephoned the garage to see if I could risk it so Bekir got some hot water from his house, we filled up the radiator, he got another five litres of hot water to take with us and leaving the cap off we set off.  We stopped off in Rogosche to  top it up again and managed to get to the garage with only one top up.  Garage owner's wife's father gave us a lift to my house and I left the Beast and the update is that the radiator should be here in the morning from Varna so fingers crossed.  Bekir's friend from the village came to collect the men and I let them know if we have lift off for Monday.

Anti-climax after that....the rest of the railings are complete and they all have two coats of preservative paint on them and all being well will be put in place on Monday.  Four portions of the mince and onions went in the freezer and the last portion I made with gravy, into a pie dish with it and sliced a potato to cover the mince.  Into the oven it went and forty minutes later I had supper.  The fire has been going from lunchtime today.  It's been cold and damp and not the sort of weather I love at all.  It's still going now with a huge log on it and it should be going for a couple of hours or so...and then we're on to bedtime.   Kitchen finished, Children in Need tonight so something different to fall asleep in front of...and nothing set for the weekend now that I have no transport.  It's actually made me more determined to replace Beauty...there looks like no chance of getting the documents sorted and the police can't help.  LN...A quiet weekend for me...LN



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Elsa Peters
November 18, 2017, 4:50pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 18th November

Silly four start this morning and read for an hour or so and then off until seven thirty and realised I didn't have to go anywhere, or do anything so I leisured it in bed until eight.  Coffee, a load of washing in, washed and dressed, toast for breakfast with my marmalade which does seem to be softening up a little, lit the fire and settled in with my Kindle.  The washing went onto the clothes airer in the bathroom to dry and I only had to wait for the phone call from the garage and unfortunately it was bad news.  The part that had been sent down from Varna was the wrong one and the new one isn't due to arrive until Tuesday   

I settled back down with my book and my brain must have been working on a solution and then it suddenly hit me that one of my friends from Djebel has a little car that I knew was lingering down at the garage.  He bought it when he wrote off his other car and now it's not used.  I gave him a call. he said that it was OK with him but that there was no insurance on it.  A quick call to my student's mum in the garage shop where I normally get my insurance from and three months insurance was seventy leva so I said to go ahead.  I phoned a taxi and headed into Djebel, we all met up at the shop, the car was being brought up from the garage and the only thing left to do was to buy the one month's road tax. thirty lev and I have the car for the next month or so.  It should also make fetching and carrying the men cheaper for me.  I mentioned to Lyubo that I wanted to buy a little car and Beauty could sit in the garage and they could take bits of it when they needed any and we could run a counter account for when mine went in at any time.  The problem with the Beast is not the radiator 'per se' but the plastic that surrounds it or the Bakelite or whatever it's called.

I sat in the borrowed car, I had to think how to drive a car with gears after driving the Beast,  The car had been left in gear with the handbrake off and as I put it into neutral it started to move forward and I had to grab for the handbrake.....a minor panic.  We went through the lights, I drove round the square and by the time that I got to the garage to get the road tax I was back into it.  It only occurred to me as I drove home that I hadn't checked whether there was any fuel or not but I got back safely.  I'd driven back in the dark, the lights are useless so I was on headlights for most of the journey back, the petrol light was flashing but I managed to reverse the car into the drive. Locking the car I realised that the passenger window was down so I fiddled with the window switch and nothing happened.  I went into the house to get a torch to see if I was missing anything like another switch inside and turned off the engine, took the key out and suddenly the cooling fan kicked in and seemed to go on for ages.  It's not good in the dark to try to navigate a strange car.  Eventually I found that the window was on the ignition key and tomorrow in the daylight I'll got through it with a fine tooth comb so that I know what I have to do.  

Six by the time I was in and settled ....at least I have a solution for next week for picking up the men.  The Beast should be ready on Tuesday night but I'll leave it down the garage and return this one when the men finish for the year.  The garage said that I should be charging him for 'exercising' it to save it sitting in the garage.  I'll take the owner out for a meal when everything is back to normal.  No photos....it's been a damp old day again and I came back in the fog.  LN...Learning curve in the morning....LN
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Elsa Peters
November 19, 2017, 3:58pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 19th November

Five start this morning and I didn't managed to get off again so settled myself into the Crystal Cave on the Kindle....I'm enjoying it and four more books in the series.  The fire was still going when I went down for coffee so I threw another log on it and it's still going now.  A little hiccup around three when I had to rescue it but rescue it I did. Washed and dressed by eight but then I clicked on to Film on and the England rugby match was on so that kept me entertained for a while.  I do hate all the analysis though.  They think that the team made too many mistakes and saying how they've got to step up their game for the Tonga match.  I'm sure it's far more technical that it used to be.  Funny decisions by the ref though.  We sent one of the England players off and then not sure how to effect a scrum...what was that all about?

I didn't bother with breakfast but went out to play in the garden.  It started with a bonfire, I'd accumulated a fair amount of rubbish with the men being here so although it was pretty damp it wasn't raining so I emptied the burning bin and got it going.  I think most of it has gone but I'll check in the morning how much the dogs and cats have managed to rescue.  They really have to scavenge for food here....my throw-outs are probably better than the bread that they normally get fed.  I came in at about eleven thirty having cleared most of the bed of the old flowers, removed the old leaves from the rhubarb so that I can get a bucket over it for the winter, cleared under the big terrace wall and that's now ready to put the winter protection around the oleander that I grew from a cutting.  I really don't want to lose it, there were no flowers on it this year but maybe next it will put up a show...fingers crossed.  

Toast and marmalade for a late breakfast and then settled on the sofa with the book.  I managed to read for about an hour but then it was as per normal...the eyes went southwards and I was woken up by a knock on the door at around two.  I was surprised to see the Librarian, we sat in the kitchen and had coffee, did the walk of the garden and generally chatted and off she went around three thirty.  I investigated the little borrowed car while she was here, worked out the windows and how to open up the petrol filler cap and I left at the same time as her to get petrol for the car.  It's strange driving a little one again and I have to remember that the clutch needs some real pressure so that I can change gear.  Otherwise, no problems.  

So it's not been a bad day...damp and there are still patches where the sun wasn't strong enough to dry the terraces.  I did manage to get the hoe out and shock a few weeds into surrender but the darkness comes down pretty quickly and I'm going to blame that for no photos.  Sorry.  Men tomorrow and it's a day for putting up the railings on the wall and terrace.  Everything has been painted twice over and I suspect that Sally might be disturbing and rehousing the wisteria and starting to dig out the toilet.  Strictly results tonight and I really can't call it. It was a mixed bag last night.  LN...Going hunting for supper...LN
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