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Elsa Peters
July 1, 2019, 8:20pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 1st July

Well that's half the year gone and thank you Linda for your message last night and so pleased you enjoy the pickies.  I send love back to all of you in OZ but it's time that you started thinking about a trip to Europe....Austria, here and the UK...what could be better...

So today has been busy.  The Nipper was delivered to the garage for a wash and brush up and potentially and oil change which in the end it didn't need.  I went with the garage owner to take his son for a swimming lesson in the council pool and what a good time he had.  His father went off to get his car MOT'd and I sat watching the little one and I was filled with pride when this ten year old met with the other members of the group and introduced himself by name to all of them and shook their hand as he did it.  How many in England would have that approach?  Such mature behaviour in a ten yer old.

They all had to lie down on their towels at the beginning of the lesson and they went through the exercises...it was almost like a Pilates class but they were down to their swimwear.  After five minutes of exercises they were allowed to go into the water but they were a little reluctant...the water was cold but he soon warmed them up with lots of to-ing and fro-ing...the instructor is pretty good and keeping them at it.  I sat in the sun watching and taking lots of photos for his mum to look at and she was as proud as could be when I told her about how he introduced himself to the group.  It's nice when your children are praised by an outsider.  So around forty minutes into the lesson, they were all shepherded in to the little pool for a game of water polo and two teams slugged it out and there was only one goal so no one was really counting but they had fun.  Father arrived eventually and we headed home, I picked up the Nipper, went to the shop to show mum the photos and I was home for three.  

I toyed with the rest of the grass but it was much too hot so I got my head down for an hour or so, got changed and headed out to my other family for supper and a catch up.  Really relaxing time and I've been allowed to see wedding dresses before any of the others and sister's dress that she seems to have overspent on....so much so that I took the remains of a packet of biscuits from my bag and gave them to her so that she would have something to eat at work tomorrow.  Done in jest but we all found it funny.  Lovely relaxing day...tomorrow dentist and I think I'm having to take out a mortgage for payment.  LN...prices have risen alarmingly....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 2, 2019, 6:18pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 2nd July

Eleven into bed and straight through until six thirty and a very lazy morning.  Well it started off that way but once I was out of bed it was all systems go.  I washed up from yesterday and it's a good job that I did....the water is off again tonight and I managed to get my bed stripped and two loads of washing on the line before nine...not bad going.  I'd more or less worked it out down to the wire to get to my appointment at the dentist on time but I delayed myself with a visit to my Avatar at about ten.  I'd seen several of the ladies from the village outside Avatar's house yesterday when I came back for the swimming lesson and went to find out what it was all about.  It's not very often that they gather in their best clothes with the long coats on.  I transpires that my sheep farmer's mother wasn't well at all.  I saw her at the mevlit on Saturday but I think she went down hill after that and the Kardjali doctor has sent her to Plovdiv ...I wish her well.

So a quick wash and brush up especially of the teeth and I headed into Djebel to see the dentist via the cash machine.  First one wasn't working and neither was the second and now I was really pushing it for time.  I went back to the first one and the security guard was outside and he mentioned that there was another one at the shop near the restaurant on one of the side roads and sure enough it was there...and working.  I managed to get to the dentist with ten minutes to spare and I was in the chair by eleven and undergoing treatment.  He's good, not got what I would call a very good bedside manner and a little rough with it but the end result is perfect if a little expensive.  At the end of the treatment I mentioned a couple of implants and was told that before any decisions were made I had to go to the Polyclinic dental department and have a 'panorama x-ray' and then we would see the treatments available.  

Back home for one after a visit to my student's home, watched tennis for most of the afternoon and at six thirty I got the urge to finish mowing the grass.  I'd done half of it the other day but it was much to hot to do the remainder earlier in the day.  Fifty minutes later I'd finished it and no flowers to water....there is no water....except for my roof catchings from last week.  

Tomorrow I take the little one to his swimming lesson and I've decided that I might as well go prepared and do an hour's exercise myself ....it sort of makes sense and my only problem was finding my swim costume and where else would ....in the bag from last year behind the kitchen door.  Hey there you go.  It will be boots blacked by nine thirty, at the shop for ten , swimming from eleven to twelve and I believe they serve big fat pizza portions and it will be rude no to.  Lunch with the boy.  LN....Calories out...calories in....LN
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Elsa Peters
July 3, 2019, 5:25pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 3rd July

Brilliant night's sleep, woke up at six thirty and was ready to face the day.  The water was still off so it was back to bottled water for teeth and wash but when I went down stairs to make the coffee, there was a funny rattling sound coming from the pipes over the central heating boiler.  I guess what had happened...a bird had found its way down the chimney but because I have a piece of wood to half close the flue, it was trapped in the pipe.  I took the wood away, there was  loads of dust kicked up and a small bird was frantically pecking at the glass of the burner box trying to escape.  As you know my stairs are open so I imagined this poor thing trying to find his escape route without putting much thought into it and bashing against the long windows in the stair well so first course of action was to close the curtains and shut the rest of the doors leading from the hallway.  I opened the main door to the house, opened the conservatory door, left the fly screen intact so that I wasn't inundated with flying insects and opened the door to the wood burner.  It took it a while and suddenly out it came, headed for the sunlight so I had to make a quick dash to open the conservatory fly screen so that it could escape. and off it went.  Now I don't really like things that flap about which includes butterflies, moths and birds but I managed it.  Curtain open, move along, nothing to see here folks.

So out I went onto the terrace and watched the rest of the birds but at first minus the camera.  Two woodies headed for the lonesome pine but by the time I came back with the super zoom attached they had gone to find food elsewhere.  The sparrows settled in the usual resting spots, a huge crow landed on the electricity cables telling all the rest to keep away and the starlings were out but not in force.  The martins were hanging around the nest under the eaves of the little house and I'm still not sure if we have a hatching in progress.

So with swim suit on, towel in the bag along with sunscreen I headed into Djebel to pick up my charge at ten fifteen.  He must have been watching from their apartment and appeared as I more or less went in to the shop.  He jumped in the back, said goodbye to his mother about ten times and we were off and in his limited English we had sort of a conversation.  I reminded him that I took his brother as a student when his brother was fourteen so he's doing well at ten to be using words and the more he hears, the better his understanding and it's teaching him listening skills.  The teacher here do it from a book and really don't speak the language at all.

We parked up and the swim teacher was waiting outside to take in the boys so I carried on, paid my four lev and headed for the concrete seating at the deep end of the pool away from the instructor's area.  I sat for a while and decided to brave it, tried the steps and gave up, sat on the side for five minutes or so, realised I was being a bit of a coward and tried the steps again.  Where I was going in it must be three meters deep, the surface is warm, the rest is cold and the pool is very wide but hey....I managed forty minutes of swimming more or less once I'd started.  I didn't want to get out, it would have been too cold to get back in,  Eventually I'd had enough and moved my belongings down to where the lesson was taking place and watched my charge.  The lesson finished, he played for a while with one of the other boys but eventually he'd had enough so quick change, over to Lidl and we played granny and grandson and it so reminded me of my grandson and the fun we used to have.  I teased him at the cash desk asking him if he had money for his drink and hamburger and his eyes shot up and I laughed at him and eventually he saw that I didn't mean it.  Safely deposited home to his mother and same again tomorrow....but no lessons next week.  I was told that the instructor is the coach for the Bulgarian water polo team and they are off to Italy for competitions.  I'm mixing with the famous.....

Washing done, the water's back on, slept for the afternoon and I think I've used muscles that thought they wouldn't be needed again...fooled you.  A little light relief with Wimbledon when I woke up and now it's kitchen time to find something to stop the bugs from gnawing away tonight.  Sports filled day and enjoyable and I should sleep well tonight...hopefully.  LN...Pizza or fish fingers or a ham baguette...that is the question....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 4, 2019, 4:48pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 4th July

Six start and the sun was just up.  I managed to get a shot of it, down for coffee and back to bed with my book.  I've started a 'new to me' Scarpetto by Joanna Cornwell and not sure yet if I've read it but time will tell.  The birds were very active this morning and I noticed a pair of wagtails but didn't managed to get a good enough zoom on them.  Washed and dressed bu seven thirty, nothing much to do this morning except be at the shop to pick up my charge by tenish.  Breakfast was the remains of the ham from yesterday on the remains of the baguette so that's two things tidied away....the washing was put away making it three and I indulged myself with breakfast tv until it was more or less time to go.  I did spot my tortoise romping across the grass the speed of torchlight heading for the bottom left corner and he was munching away on grass cuttings when I went for a close-up.

My charge was ready when I arrived and having the final things shoved into his rucksack and we headed out.  Now I've not yet managed to get my radio to tune in to the popular music radio stations and really must get round to it since the first thing he asks for is music.  His father always has it on quite loudly and I suppose he's used to it.  I've got a week to do it though....no swimming next week as I mentioned yesterday.  So we arrived at the venue, he found his friend so went to sit on the bench with him waiting for the trainer to arrive and gather them up.  I went to the cash desk and asked for a ticket to swim and I'd put four lev on the counter which confused him.  He thought that I was paying for my charge as well so I explained that he was having lessons and he gave me a ticket and pushed two lev back towards me.  Yesterday when I'd asked for a pensioner discount the lady had ignored my request so it was bargain basement today.  I carried on inside and indicated to the lad where I would be sitting, he was quite happy with his friend and they waited together.  I spotted him as he came in, waved and he was set and so was I.  Stripped down to the swim suit and oiled up, got my book out and was bracing myself for the entry into the water.  Eventually I plucked up the courage and once in, which did take a time, it was worth the effort and I swam around for about thirty minutes.  The instructor came up and spoke to me and I told him to ignore my technique....I was taught as a young girl to swim but as an old girl I can please myself how I get around in the water...no rules any longer.  

The lesson was finished and I let him play for a little longer with his friend and he went to get changed and I told him I'd wait at the gate.  The first thing he said to me was that he was very hungry and yesterday we'd stopped off at Lidl and he'd had a couple of hamburgers.  I'm not sure that his mother approved having told me that she was encouraging him to take off a couple or so of kilos so today I wasn't going to indulge him, he could wait until we got back to Djebel and then it was her decision what he had to eat.  As it is he ended up with a couple of long sausages in rolls but that was nothing to do with me.

I stopped to chat to her for a while and when the shop got busy I made my excuses and left, washing done and out on the line and I watched Dan Evans go through to the third round which he did in three straight sets and it stopped me from going to sleep.  The thunder was rolling around and dark clouds came over so I went to get the washing in, just in case and looking round the garden there were a few casualties of the dry conditions for the last few days.  I watered the little Buddleia near to the wall and the hydrangea in the long wall garden was looking sad so I fixed up the three garden hoses and managed to get the sprinkler onto the bed.  I left it for about half an hour and then moved it to the new little garden along the long wall and got very wet in the process...ah well...I soon dried.  Suddenly I noticed something moving on the path behind the bed and it's another tortoise but this one is much smaller so either there's a super highway between the outside world and my garden or someone is sending me a message that the wall won't keep everything out.  I'll wait for the next.

I've just noticed the time, the hose is turned off and again I should think about supper but it's been so hot that it cuts my appetite.  I tend to drink a lot of water and I've been on apple juice so I suppose that's just as good.  Nothing at all on the agenda for tomorrow...I'll see how I feel in the morning and if the weather's good I might head up to my hotel above Kardjali.  LN...Very relaxing day again today....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 5, 2019, 4:29pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 5th July

So last night I went out to take a photo of the sunset or the evening sky as it turned out and I saw what I thought was a strange object in the sky which turned out to be a kite, with string attached being flown by Avatar's son with his grandson.  Strange sight in BG...didn't realise that they'd got this far and hadn't seen any in the shops.

Bed at eleven thirty and went through until six this morning and it must have been the exercise yesterday.  Fitbit's having a field day and my results are stacking up quite nicely against the totals recorded by Princess.  Fortunately it's not tracking my grandson's results...I think he was out on manoevers last week...   I went out into the garden to throw the old bread out for the birds and almost stepped on my big tortoise and he made me jump...I didn't expect him there.  I thought it would be quite good fun to put a tracker on it but I've given up that idea now as you will read later.  Instead I set to watering the rest of the garden starting off with the long wall side bed and suddenly I saw my little one heading down the other side of the stack of roof tiles and I'm not sure if it's the same small one or another.  As I said they must have a super highway or the man from next doors garden has decided to trap them in mine so they don't eat his vegetables....well he's potentially got them back.  I pottered in the garden, saw that there were roots had developed on one of the plants that Avatar had given me and so that went into a plastic bottle that I sprayed blue and I have the blue circle on the grass to prove it.  It'll be gone the next time I mow the meadow.  I came in at twelve and I'm wondering why I bothered watering the garden, the weather closed in by about one, the thunder started and it's been raining steadily all afternoon and it still is now.

Wimbledon this afternoon for me and I cooked the pizza which was supposed to be a four cheese on but I didn't taste any.  It's the first from Lidl and it will be the last...not enjoyable at all.  I retrieved a chicken leg from the freezer this morning but alas it will be going into the fridge for tomorrow.  I don't have the hunger pains yet and aren't really expecting them after the pizza....it's sitting very heavily.  

The garden looks good for the rain nd I think I upset one of the moles this morning.  I shoved the hose pipe down one of the holes and it just seemed to go on for ever without filling up which hopefully will deter it...but I doubt it.  As for Little and Large my two tortoise...I saw Large walking by the fly screen and heading for the main terrace so he had to go.  I had a brainwave of using the snow shovel to pick it up...I'm not really in to wildlife...so I scooped it up and put it on the grass outside the front wall towards my neighbour's garden.  Not content with that I went looking for Little and found it munching plants of the little side bed so it was also scooped up and was in the same place.  Now the race was on....Large was off closely followed by Little and into the shrubbery they went.  If they find their way back in...there will be questions asked in the village.  

I've just checked out the weather for the next couple of days and it looks fine....the garden won't need watering so we'll see how things look in the morning.  LN....Another gentle day....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 6, 2019, 4:52pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 6th July

Lane night and early morning left me feeling pretty jaded.  I made it down to the bread van and came back with a fresh loaf and a cheesy bread...and that was breakfast.  I took my Kindle out on to the terrace and settled down on the sofa.  The morning mist had lifted and I needed the umbrella up to keep the sun out of my eyes but I seemed to be plagued with little flies so I tried to think about how to get rid of them.  I went in the house and came out with a Citronella infused wooden candle thingy but the thing wouldn't light despite my best efforts.  Back in the house and came back with some joss sticks, managed to light a couple of them and ...nothing....the flies still lingered so I went back in the house, settled on the sofa and got so comfortable that within the house I was asleep catching up with last night.

I settled in with Wimbledon and was surprised by a car pulling up outside around two this afternoon and it was my Fotinovo friends and was surprised that they both were visiting.  She normally has too much to do in the garden so kettle on, coffee made and we settled on the terrace.  I hadn't seem them for a while so there was quite a bit to catch up on including Bulgarian citizenship and how difficult the test might be in the Bulgarian language.  We discussed jam making and whether or not they wanted some of the wild plums from my garden and since they've invited me for a swim and a meal tomorrow, I'll cut off a few branches and take some for them.  I did get him to do one job for me...I just want to use a phone as a phone and not as anything else...I have tablets for that....so he change a few settings for me, deleted a few programs and now I should not get the message that I'm running short of space....result.

Off they went and I settled down to watch the Konti match and how good was that.  She's now made it to the second week and fingers crossed, the British number one will carry on the good work.  The chicken leg went in the oven along with potatoes, onions and newly lifted beetroot and after one and a half hours they were served with mayo.  When the chicken etc. came out, I sliced an apple, added a little water, sugar and cinnamon and I served that with cream.  The washing up can wait, I'm watching Federer and he seems to be steamrolling through his game.  The Voice Kids tonight...it's good to see the judges respecting the feelings of the contestants...it makes a change in this day and age.  

So it's been a lovely day, a very calm and peaceful evening and I've had a very chilled day.  LN..And not a sighting of a tortoise...so far...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 7, 2019, 7:09pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 7th July

Six thirty start and I bet I'm having a better morning than Dan Evans who got knocked out of Wimbledon last night.  Such a talent with too much to prove which makes him into an arrogant young man...in my personal opinion.  It was a good game though and it could have gone either man...but the best or most consistent man won.

Washing up done, washing in the machine to set to 'on' when my pj's were in it, breakfast of toast and Marmite, shower and hair washed, washing machine started and it was at that point it started to unravel.  I decided to sit out on my bedroom balcony to dry my hair 'au naturel' and I spotted a woodpecker that had obviously collided with my bedroom window earlier.  I'd heard the thud, not thought much about it so on seeing it I got the shovel from downstairs to remove it and put it over the wall. As I lifted it up on the shovel.it sort of disintegrated and lots of tiny worms fell out of it so I carried on and threw it on to the grass and threw the shovel in the other direction..I went down to the kitchen and boiled up a kettle of water, back to the balcony and swabbed the area pretty thoroughly and lay on the bed with the Kindle.  I chose Soda Crush...Angry Birds didn't seem right.  Unfortunately I appeared to be on a winning streak and I knocked off about twelve programs on the trot and I was given extra time and bonus counters and by now the time was moving on.  I hadn't got a set time to be at the venue this lunchtime but I'd set myself a target of two and it was now one fifteen.

I burst into action, dried my hair, pegged out the washing, moved the woodie to over the wall, took the loppers and severed several large branches from my wild plum and put them into one of the garden recuse containers that i have.  This went onto the back seat and at ten to two I set off.  I arrived for just after five past spotting D of S in Fotinovo and I was remembered by the little one as 'mummy's friend'.  I carried on, we didn't linger long and set off for the first hotel with a pool but there were far too many people swimming so we only stayed for a coffee...and on to the next.  This one was better and we found a table, more cold drinks, lots of children jumping in the pool but I managed a swim despite the activity surrounding me.  Very hot yet very relaxing...nothing beats a day in the sun and a swim...makes you feel good.

So back to their house for savoury pulled lamp and salad with fresh bread, followed by ice-cream.  We toured the garden and she has done wonders with it for the first year and has grown unusual vegetables...Coffee to follow....in the Nipper just before nine and came the Greek road home and up the back lane which is a very rough road now that it's baked hard.  Home for nine ten, washing in and put away and now relax...I have nothing to do.  Ten my time and soon be time for bed.  LN....Very pleasant day with friends....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 8, 2019, 4:54pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 8th July

Absolutely ridiculous night last night...and even more stupid morning and I've suffered for it all day.

I went to sleep at a reasonable hour but was awake at two ten according to my Fitbit and not an ounce of sleep left in me...so I took to Soda Crush .  So many games and first time winners and I think it's trying to recompense me for losing all my data from my first registration...and I kept playing until six, still wide awake and raring to go.  Coffee and energised, I was heaving the lawnmower round the big house grass at seven thirty and completed it by nine ten so not bad going..... and just over nine thousand Fitbit steps so I should reach my target today but not if this afternoon had anything to do with it.

I stopped for breakfast and had toast and Marmite and buttered bun loaf, settled for more coffee and time with the new book on the Kindle and promptly went to sleep and was nodding on and off until two this afternoon...obviously catching up on what I'd missed out on.  It didn't help that the weather closed in, the thunder started and the lightening was pretty near and then yes, you've guessed, the electricity went off and it took a while for it to be restored...a person probably just had to press a button.  It's now sodded up the internet and it's freezing at every opportunity so I've abandoned the thought of watching anything today.  I shall probably finish my book this evening.  Am I enjoying it?...Hard to say.  I've not read this writer for a while but she seems to be getting much more technical and referring to the history of the supporting characters but in the absence of anything else I'll stick with it.

The clouds have rolled over, the sun's come out again, about to set over Smolyan and looking at the forecast, it could be like this all week.  Jacket potato tonight....I need a light supper....and hopefully a good night's sleep.  I've just found a video about what to do with Iris when they've finished flowering and intend putting it into practice tomorrow so they don't look so untidy.  LN....Never too old to learn....LN  

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Elsa Peters
July 9, 2019, 4:54pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 9th July

Better night last night.  I woke up at six thirty, opened the door to the balcony even though there was mist or should we call it fog obstructing the view.  I went back to bed after I'd made coffee but had to shut the door, there was no sun and it was cold.  Eventually it lifted and I went out with my second cup and walked the garden planning the activity for the day but not much was achieved.  I undid the umbrella from the balcony, the rain yesterday had left bit all over it so I got the hose going and cleaned everything off.  I left it half open so that it would dry off but in retrospect it was the wrong decision.  

I made toast for breakfast and toyed with taking outside but as I approached the sofa on the terrace one of the visiting cats shot off it and so I removed the cushions, they were wet from yesterday and put them on the bench to dry off.  I picked up the book and carried on with the story, the weather started to close in and just  poured down.  It seemed like only one big cloud up there which just dropped its load but hey... was it heavy.  When that drifted over to Greece, it seemed to dry up pretty quickly and the thirty degrees made every thing muggy.  

I'd made the decision that there would be very little activity today and then it started again but this time the wind was howling and the umbrella on the terrace was almost horizontal so I went out on to the bedroom balcony to try to secure the umbrella getting soaked in the process.  I didn't have much success out there so I went out to the terrace, shut the umbrella completely and wedged the top of it under the balcony and I was soaked.  I made my way back to the bedroom balcony, go down on my knees and ran the bungee chord round the frame made surer it was secured to the balcony rails.  Job done.  I came inside and dripped my way to the bathroom and realised that the solution was to have a shower, wash my hair and have the rest of the afternoon off, I ran the washing machine to get rid of the wet clothes and Wimbledon was calling.  

The rain has stopped now and everything looks very green and I suppose the grass is getting up its strength and I shall be having to get out with the grass mower...it does mean that I get a good step score on the Fitbit.  Jacket potato is in the oven along with two schnitzels so it's time for me to wind this up and concentrate on supper.  The doubles match is about to start, Murray and Williams so that's my evening sorted.  LN....Looks like this has set in for the week.....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 10, 2019, 5:17pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 10th July

Silly night again...two hours in the middle with my book...back to sleep at around six and woke up at eight.  Perhaps I should take up a night shift...I'd do OK.  So I made use of my coffee making facilities and only had last night's water glass to have it in but it did the job.  I made the second and decided that despite the fact that it was a bit of a cloudy start to the day I'd take my book outside and read it on the bench.  I 'pillowed up' got settled and despite the off drop of rain I was doing fine until a rather persistent little fly began to bother me to the point that I came in, got the bedroom chair and using the small table as a footstool, for myself settled and finished my book.  No flies on me inside.  Eventually I made it downstairs at roughly ten thirty and made toast and Marmite for breakfast and by now it looked like it could be a good day in the garden.

Firstly I collected the different pots up from the terrace where the wind had left them, the gladioli near to the mulberry on the right hand side of the garden was at a precarious angle and needed a support to help it to stay vertical so I got the lump hammer and sorted that out.  I'd also noticed that there were escaping Zinnias when I'd mown the lawn and I think life has to be protected.  They are not in the border by the gladioli, I cleared the border, cut back the white pom-pom thingies that the wind had really bashed down and now the zinnias have new homes and they have two chances but a better chance than where they were.  I got out the electricity reel and the hedge trimmer and tackled the forsythia that has put on tremendous growth this year and I'm in a similar position to the beginning of summer...I couldn't see the bottom of the garden from the terrace so it had to go.  As I trimmed the other bush I noticed that 'Little', well I think it's 'Little' has reinstated itself in the garden...well it had....it's now the other side of the wall...we take no prisoners....liberty for everyone.

I was doing OK and then my neighbours came round and I think they were bored.  I made coffee, the daughter wanted a tour of the house so I obliged despite the untidiness...and they left about an hour later with fresh lavender and two bunches of dried from last year.  Off they went so I went back to my gardening and tied up and trimmed my tomatoes and gherkins and as the weather closed in and the thunder started, it was time to put my toys away.  It was almost four o'clock.  Time for Wimbledon and caught the end of the Murray/ Williams match, promptly fell asleep watching the next double match and despite the fact that it's torturous with the program freezing and having to reload the page, I kept at it.  Nadal can do as he will..I've turned it off.

As for the weather, we had deluge after deluge, the plans for the ark out on the desk and I'll order the wood tomorrow....and they call this summer.  LN....Food and bed....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 11, 2019, 5:40pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 11th July

At last a good night's sleep.  It was a six thirty start but that's OK....the kettle was on the landing and the coffee sitting next to it....and straight back into bed.  It was a cloudy start to the day, the door to the balcony was open but I was soon under the light duvet.  The wind was nippy and I was soon on to my second top-up.  Soda Crush was just a dream ...I must have been playing it for a couple of hours and there was no rush to get out to the garden...I was waiting for it to warm up a little first.  Decided that a pair or my long spring cotton trousers  was the order of the day and I put an over t-shirt on top of my thin one thinking that if it did warm up, I could take the top one off but I never did.  I had some really noisy birds in the garden this morning and it was obviously mother and father out with babies.  They were all over the show....the tomato support, walnut, kimono dragon in the middle of the garden, lonesome pine and the clothes prop and I'm still not sure what they are.

Beans on toast for breakfast...I needed something substantial and used another delaying tactic so that I stayed in not out.  I phoned a friend in the UK who's waiting for hospital tests to check if she's had them or not.....and I forgot...it's in the UK.  I did suggest that she skips over with her health card and we could get it done here within the first week of her visit and she'd have the results either the same or the next day.  I said it tongue in cheek but I'm sure if they sent people to the hospital immediately instead of using the hospital booking system it would run smoother.  I'd love to know the 'no-show' ratings.

So out I went at ten thirty and today I was going to put into practice the instructions for cutting back the iris after flowering and getting rid of the dried leaves and boy do they look better.  I haven't managed to do them all....I decided to clear up the acacia bed, trim the rose, get rid of the old poppies and the new weeds and plant up some of the 'over spill' zinnia from the centre bed.  I came in at one thirty, settled on the sofa and checked my emails and Facebook and went out again at three and carried on with the good work.  A lot of the debris has gone over the wall but I did go down to light the bonfire but there was water in the bottom of the container and lots of maggots in there.  I didn't tip the water out, I couldn't imaging all those maggots making a squiggle for it so I tried to light it but without much joy.  I'll have another go tomorrow.

I did get mince out this morning and the intention was to make a shepherd's pie tonight using the rest of the beans but I never got round to it.  It's more than likely going to be a toasted cheese sandwich and I'll be gastronomic tomorrow...I'm a little weary tonight and have done twelve thousand steps according to my Fitbit so am feeling very virtuous.  Eight thirty my time...time to relax.  LN...Djebel in the morning to get the Beast ready for it's MOT...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 12, 2019, 7:27pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 12th July

Normal six start and out on to the balcony with my coffee and there were so many birds in the garden and in the perimeter trees.  I saw jays, golden orioles and woodies galore both ground feeding and defending their territories.  I think the babies that I saw yesterday was a woodie that hadn’t quite got its plumage colours right but they’ll develop in time.  I took the big camera out and as I did I thought it was time to change the battery and sure enough, just at the moment that a couple of woodies were vying for the lonesome pine the battery failed and I was looking for a replacement and obviously, they’d moved on.

Washed, dressed, kitchen sorted eventually but it included taking up the mats and washing them on the terrace.  I had no bread for breakfast and didn't bother to walk down to the van when I heard it down in the square.  I'd planned to go into Djebel at some point, had even written out my list but never made it.  The garage has been out of action and without electricity due to the provider so I thought they'd be really busy down there this morning so I'll be doing it tomorrow.  I pottered in the garden, got the bonfire going, managed a wash load and pegged it out and I have another two tortoise and I've got to find the highway.  I think it's Little that's back but I need to put some nail varnish on his shell to confirm and as for the other one.....it's less than Little.....it's Tiny.  Suddenly it was lunchtime...and I still didn't have any bread so I finished off the biscuits that I had.

I went out at three and decided that the second section of the grass had to be done.  The plantain stalks were annoying me every time I headed down the garden and now they're no more...and I did managed to knock up another ten thousand step.  Tools away early...I wanted to watch the men's semi-finals and that's why the update is late.  Well done Roger....there's something about Nadal that I really can't take to. It's the whole shooting match of his preparation, pulling at his shorts front and back and the strange ritual he has with his ears and nose....but he can play tennis....I'll give him that much.  As for the internet...it's been on and off all through the tennis and I did manage to see the final point and Roger's interview.....and now on to the final.

As for the mince that I was going to prepare tonight....I did it last night and ate half of it and the rest I microwaved for tonight and had it watching the tennis.  Haciber has returned from her holiday in Turkey and came round with a packet of biscuits saying the word 'mevlit' so I suppose someone has had prayers said for them but she also asked me to get her a packet of coffee filters the next time I go into Kardjali and they've been added to my list.  I did give her my box with about fifteen in it to keep her going....she might be having a party now she's back.  LN....Shower and early to bed...and possibly early to rise....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 13, 2019, 4:31pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 13th July

So at one thirty this morning I realised that I wasn't sleeping because I was cold.  I have a lightweight quilt on the bed and a sheet but I needed more so I got up and found another quilt and threw it on the bed and snuggled down.  It was seven thirty before I raised my head from the pillow, made coffee and 'picked up my bed' and walked on to the terrace and got settled out there.  There was sun peeping through the clouds and it never looked like it was going to be a good day.  It ticked along nicely until four this afternoon and then it threw it down and it's still raining now.  Yes we had the warning and shots fired over the bow as per normal and they were near and loud but it didn't deter me from watching, or at least trying to watch Wimbledon.  

I headed in to Djebel had ten minutes or so with my student's mum, picked up a few things from the hardware shop, fresh bread and tins of tuna, chicken wings for tonight but after two good tuna sandwiches I think I'm having chicken wings tomorrow.  I did remember to pick up ice cream....that could be supper.

For the last few days I've had problems with the screen freezing and I have to reload the page.  I wasn't sure if it was my computer, Transponder TV or the provider.  I lost it this afternoon and phoned the provider....the internet was up and down and I complained...expecting nothing further to happen.  Half an hour later I had a phone call and one of engineers phoned to ask me where my house was in my village and I gave him the house number and tried to explain where about it was but about ten minutes later, two internet cans pulled up outside and complete with umbrellas like something out of Mary Poppins, they made a grand entrance.  They followed me upstairs to the desk, the older engineer took one look at it and said that it was a router problem, the younger one was pinging it and said there was nothing wrong with the speed or the outside dish and that they would fit a new one.  He explained that I was to try it for about three days to confirm that it'd fixed it and to go into the shop if everything was ok and return the old one and pay for the new one.  Yes they know where I live but everything was done professionally and with trust.  Off they went with umbrellas fully extended and so far so good....ready for the Wimbledon finals tomorrow.  

The evening has settled down a little, the thunder is only vaguely rumbling but the forecast for tomorrow doesn't look good at all.  We're supposed to be having thunder and rain all day....I'll let you know.    LN....I think they've fixed it....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 14, 2019, 6:56pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 14th July

I'm worn out...I've just finished watching the Men's finals and what a game.  I didn't want him to win but win he did...but someone had to.

As for the rest of the day.  Firstly the storm last night dramatic...the clouds were gathering and heading for Greece but it was obvious that Greece wanted nothing of them so it caused quite a collision over the hillside and then suddenly the squall hit and we had a terrific downpour.  The wind was horrendous and this morning I was emptying the rain out of pots, I lost a gladioli, the flowerpots were everywhere but it didn't take too long to sort out.  It was the weather for long trousers and a hoody but after another breakfast of beans on toast I was out there planting out the seedlings that I'd dug up yesterday but that was after I'd spend about an hour getting my Fitbit to update on my two tablets.  Eventually I managed it but there was swearing involved.

The little garden round the wild plum tree is now planted up as it the bottom new garden.  They have zinnias and self-set yellow daisies...I'm not sure of the lifespan of them but we'll see if they come back next year.  Avatar came round and brought me a dish of her homemade yogurt and said that she hadn't seen me for a while.  She's got guests so I've stayed out of her way but they'll be gone soon.   I put my tools away around three as the rain started and settled in to the match, finished the chicken wings that I'd cooked last night so I was having an early supper.  The rain appears to have cleared up, the moon is out and fingers crossed, it will be a reasonable day tomorrow.  On the agenda....I want the garage to check the filters in the Beast and then I'm taking it into Kardjali for its MOT....well that's the plan for now.  LN...Antiques Roadshow and ...bed.....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 15, 2019, 5:24pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 15th July

What a good night's sleep....once my kidney's decided to pack in for the night.  I'd just settled off when I got the signal that I had to make one small visit for womankind but it was straight back to sleep and right through until seven thirty.  That's knocked my Fitbit sleep averages for six.  Coffee but there was no going out on to the balcony...it was damp and miserable and better going no place than getting soaked.    I used up the rest of the beans on toast for breakfast and I shall waft myself through the day,  I got dressed and headed down the garden to check out the plants that I'd put in yesterday and they were all looking OK and the ground's so wet anyway, they're more likely to be drowned than dried up.

So today I was toying with the different options on what to do when and I made the decision to take the Beast into the garage, have the filters checked and oil replaced if required but I thought I'd made the wrong decision when I got down to the garage.  As I drove through Djebel there were so many cars around and several were in the garage waiting for things to be done.  I know Monday is market day but with the weather being so rubbish I think a lot of the locals were out of their gardens and 'having a day off' with their mates.  I left the keys with the number two in the garage explaining what I needed done and asked them to clean it outside, the inside was acceptable for me and mentioned that it was going for an MOT so the air filter was important.  I walked to the town, took the old modem and box to the internet shop and paid for it....they didn't need the box or old modem so I ended up carrying it round.  I had a few words with my lovely restaurant lady who is the grandmother of my birthday buddy and then carried on to the garage shop to rest my weary bones until the Beast was ready.  The garage owner came up while I was in the shop and went out with several boxes for the Beast but the bill was much better than I'd expected.  He came up to bring another car which was ready for collection and he gave me a lift back to the garage to pick mine up and as I drove away I  turned right for Kardjali instead of left for home...I was taking it for its MOT.

The garage was quiet and I drove straight in to the bay.  The owner came out and shook and kissed my hand, I tried to blush and said 'Monsieur' as he said 'Madame' and off he went to fly his pigeons which he keeps in his old camper van in the yard.  I think his wife is anti them.  My documents were OK, the list of things to be checked were ticked off even though he hadn't moved from the office and he was already printing up the documents and approached the Beast with the windscreen sticker in his hand.  He did lift the bonnet and check something, attached some cables probably for the emissions and drove the car on to the rollers to check the brakes which is a little more difficult with an automatic than a car with gears.  Sticker on, I paid thirty five lev which is the same that I've paid for the last few years, he drove the Beast over the other pit in the drive through and delivered it to the entrance point for me.  I waved to my pigeon man as I left and shall be seeing him next month when the Nipper has to be done.  I drove to Lidl for a few items, carried on to the petrol station and put some in the Beast and then used the back road to get home.

Lovely day and achieved a lot....I received a wedding invitation for a couple that I don't know but I live in the village so have to be invited and so far I'm not even sure who they are related to....better do my homework.  I't going to be a ham baguette for supper, I'm not in the mood to cook and I'm hoping for another good night's rest.  At last the rain has stopped and tit's turned into a pleasant evening but temperature is only nineteen degrees....I think summer doesn't know it's time to put in an appearance.  LN....Time to close up for the night...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 16, 2019, 4:42pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 16th July

Silly night again last night....there was a three hour gap in my sleep register...and I thought it was going to be OK.  I was up and about at six thirty, coffee and back to bed and someone had stolen the Greek mountains...I couldn't even see the bottom of the garden.  I left all doors and windows closed...it was miserable and cold and solaced myself with another coffee as I snuggled down.

For some reason I looked at the floor tiles in the guest bedroom and noticed that there were one or two dead flies so I got the old hoover from the sewing room and only noticed that the hoover pip had a split in it about a foot from where the metal pipe fixes in.  I swore a bit and then thought that if I could get the end out from where it fixed to the machine I could cut the pipe down and reattach it and with the aid of a pair of scissors, I removed the damaged pipe and 'jobs a guddun'.  I now have another job title to add to my CV....hoover fixer.  I finished the hoovering and put it away, down for a ham baguette, back upstairs for the towels and down yet again for shower and hairwash.  I didn't manage to contact the Librarian to see if our mutual plans were coming to fruition so the day was going to be mine.  We had planned swimming and shopping but it took ages for the sun to break through but then only half-heatedly so I got a load of washing in the machine and as the day progressed the weather further deteriorated so the washing was in as soon as possible before the rains came.  And they did but it was only a shower...just enough to keep the grass growing.

I walked the garden and noticed that one of my shrubs had eventually put on three flowers but I think it's in the wrong place...it needs more sun to flourish.  The orange rose by the gate is up for it's second flowering along with the honeysuckle and the little buddleia at the bottom of the garden is doing very well.  It was there that I noticed yet another new tortoise chomping its way through the grass and leaving fair sized messages as it went....in and out so to speak.  Not a lot of activity this afternoon...I munched on tuna mayo on toast, a couple of bananas and settled down for an afternoon nap to catch up on my missed three hours.  No supper required...I'm replete so I shall be trying yet again to have an early night.

I've got swimming duties tomorrow without rain stops play or it's too cold to go....I'm about to drop his parents a message to see if I'm on duty or not.  LN...Come on summer.... we need sun...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 17, 2019, 6:11pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 17th July

Better night last night, six thirty start and nowhere to be until ten if at all.  I made coffee and went back to bed and didn't surface until eight thirty, I had enough bread for breakfast so didn't bother with the van.  I messaged my swim school mum to see if he was up for it or not and she reckoned that it was a little cold for his lesson, I wanted to know if I was putting on clothes for Kardjali or for the garden...and the garden won. It wasn't cold but I know the water at the pool is exceptionally cold so maybe she was taking precautions and I certainly wouldn't have been taking a dip.

I put on long pants with a t-shirt and one of my gardening overshirts and headed out to see what I would be doing today.  I found a couple of cucumber thingies so walked over the road with them and handed them to Avatar who was slicing a watermelon obviously bought from a car and trailer that was doing a brisk business with the ladies from the village.  I was offered but abstained...they were so big that it would have taken me a week to get through it.  I lifted the onions and cleared the patch but there's lots of bindweed that needed removing and I hate that stuff.  It really needs double digging with a fine tooth comb and today wasn't the day....I couldn't find the comb.  I came in at one and had knocked off almost six thousand steps which surprised me.  I made a cheese and ham toasted sandwich for brunch, had a couple of bananas and a bowl of ice-cream and that set me up for a very nice long afternoon snooze.  

I settled in to the internet and then it went down which was due to them not me so I've started to read book five of the Game of Thrones again, got bored with that and armed with my trusty fork and spade I cleared another couple of patches of the garden, weeded round the beetroot, trimmed the tomatoes and all that's left to do is lift the boards that I use to separated out the sections, remove the bindweed from underneath them and replace the boards with new if necessary.  I've just checked the FitbIt  and I've exceeded my daily goal of ten thousand.  Tools away, the onions are drying on the terrace, I've got three beetroot to do something with tomorrow if I don't take the little one swimming and if I do go to Kardjali, I have to get some coffee filter bags for Haciber requested again today and more for myself since I gave her the remainder of my supply.

No supper required....I'm still topped up from my full on brunch.  It was a pleasant day but the storm clouds are gathering so I might have to move the onions to a better place...and I would just like to remind my mate upstairs that ...it's summer.  LN....Swimming or not swimming?  That is the question....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 18, 2019, 4:33pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 18th July

Yet again a silly night....three thirty and nothing doing on the sleep front at all and I'm back to 'shift pattern' sleeping.  Oh for a good all the way through night.  Out of bed by seven thirty, walked the estate holding my coffee to check on the babies that have gone in and everything seems to be doing OK.  There were no 'visitors' in the garden.  Maybe it was just too early for the tortoises but none showed up, perhaps they were having a lie in somewhere.  I checked my messages and the boy was going swimming so I dressed for town but there was no way that I was going to get in that water.  We were down to fourteen degrees one night so I knew it was going to be cold.  

I arrived at ten, we left at ten ten and were on our way.  The car park is very small so we ended up having to pay but I'd rather do that than leave it on the street.  There was a lovely man in the kiosk...no tickets, no receipt and 'mnogo merci' and that's his coffee money.  I had to pay to go in the class this morning, other time I didn't have to and I explained that I was only accompanying my charge but she was determined and for two leva I'm not making a song and dance about it.  The little one had his bathers on so only had to strip off to be ready.  I noticed the instructor and asked him about his trip to Italy with the water polo team and was told that it came third out of a hundred teams in the contest.  I asked him where abouts it was in Italy and he said it was near to Rimini and I mentioned Cattolica and I was bang on.  He was surprised that I knew it but my parents used to go there years ago.  I was right...the water was freezing but my charge managed to jump in, jump out and I told him to keep on breathing....it was very cold.  At this point the instructor said that they would use the baby pool, the group went over to it and I found a bench out of the sun and sat down with my Kindle to carry on with G of T.  They did a few exercises, played water polo and by ten to twelve obviously everyone had had enough, my charge went to get changed and off we went to Billa to buy the coffee filter bags for Haciber.  We carried on to Lidl, he chose the biscuits that he wanted and I picked up a few other things and we headed home.  My now relinquished charge disappeared up to the apartment with the biscuits in his bad and I told him that he was to save some for his parents...well the thought was there.

Home for two thirty after stopping off at the bottom supermarket and buying some large plastic fruit containers that they were getting rid of and the idea is to start sorting out the little house and workshop and tidy things up a bit.  I've got tool everywhere.  Sofa time this afternoon after a couple of ham baguettes and the rest of my bottle of coke and it could have been a grass day but the mood didn't grab me enough...it will keep for tomorrow.  Nothing on the agenda for tomorrow...I have nowhere to go and no one to see...the day is all mine.  LN...Should have got petrol for the mower....doh...LN

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Elsa Peters
July 19, 2019, 6:52pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 19th July

So another night awake at 3.30...one hour reading and then off for the second instalment. Coffee, walk of the garden and didn't see any sign of any of the tortoise at the bottom of the garden.  Just have to mention the moon last night.... bright orange and caught me by surprise...so it was outwith the camera and I posted it on FB.  Now why couldn't it have been that cloudless when it was the night of the eclipse.  I suppose it was somewhere, just not here.

I didn't bother getting changed for the garden, my PJ's last night turned into garden gear and first task was to remove the old cover from the stool that I'd bought and I was surprised...I liked what was underneath.  It's given me a new idea for the colour scheme...I need green covers for the two sofas.  I headed down with the rubbish to sort out the bonfire, I'd tipped it out when it was waterlogged and no matter how hard I tried, including taking down the drill, I couldn't get any holes in it.  Everything was dried out now so I separated out the tins and tun foil for the container down the road, stuff that could be burnt and the remainder that could be buried in the garden.  The container went back on the bricks, the new rubbish was lit and the old garden rubbish put back and everything ticked away nicely.   Another job done.

I came in and fried off the two tomatoes from my garden and had them on toast for breakfast....fruits of my labours and then went back to clearing some of the bigger weeds under the wall at the bottom of the garden and the ivy that was so easy to clear.  It reminded me of twisting up spaghetti over a fork but if was much bigger fork and much more spaghetti.  The grass had to be done but there was too much dew on the ground this morning to tackle it until after lunch.  I took out the little hedge trimmer and did my topiary on the wild plums and was working my way through them when I surprised by the Librarian...she'd found me at the bottom of the garden.

We headed up and I made coffee and we sat on the terrace.  I trimmed the onions has we spoke and they're now ready for stringing and then we came in and I changed some of the settings on her home phone...she was having issues and had lost the ring tone and date settings so I reset everything.  She left soon afterwards to give it a try at home and if it works, fine and there's no point heading up to Kardjali tomorrow...they don't work on Saturday.

I made lunch and settled down on the sofa with the G of T and yes you've guessed it, I had my afternoon snooze and was ready to get back into the garden at four thirty after a swift coffee.  I knew I was short of petrol and thought I'd probably have enough to finish half of it but I was wrong.  I'd got at least half of the main house garden left to do so quickly changed into another pair of trousers and t-shirt, remembered to pick up the book that I'd bought for my student and headed into Djebel.  Book delivered, petrol purchased and back to it.  The main grass is finished and I came in just before eight.  My lunch will suffice, I've showered and washed my hair, I'm on fruit juice and I'm just about to settle in to the first night of the Proms.  Little house grass on the cards for tomorrow and onion stringing....and I'm sure I'll find something else to do.  LN...Proms is going off...too modern for me....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 20, 2019, 6:25pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 20th July

Straight through until seven...whatever next.  I sat out on the bedroom balcony with my coffee and watched the morning come to life and saw someone walking along the bottom wall and couldn't make out who it was until they put up there hand and waved.  It was my next door neighbour collecting the branches of the bush that they use to keep the cows out and apparently they got into her garden yesterday and started to savage the crops.  I named the farmer and yes...it was the same way that told me to get my fences fixed to keep them out but I wasn't going to give her the same advice.  Her method was free if not always successful...mine cost but somehow and I know not how...it doesn't keep the tortoise out...but they're not exactly 'savaging' my crops.

Baked beans on toast for breakfast...the eggs are about to be thrown over the wall and have been in stock for a while.  I know the method, put them into water and if they float they're no use and should be thrown but I don't take chances.  The beans are out of a can.  Again I was out working in my 'last night's PJ's' because they are cotton trousers and a t-shirt.  I watered the terrace pots from the water barrel mixing some of the 'white fertiliser' into the water.  I'd also noticed that I had about ten baby Busy Lizzie seedling in the original pot so I punched some hole in one of the containers, watered the new compost well and potted them up into it and they've spend the day in the shade getting settled.  I used to always have a pot of red ones in an old washbowl on the window sill in the second house we had when I was married.  The were such a joy from the road,  These are white and they'll come in for the winter.  I've also put some wallflower seeds in and fingers crossed they'll germinate.

I realised what I was doing...delaying the inevitable...the rest of the lawn needed to be done so at eleven I went out there and was working well on it until I had a visitor so the kettle went on, we settled on the terrace and he left at just before one.  I was tempted to leave the rest of the lawn but no...back to it and I'd finished around two and I was ready to settle in to watch the athletics from London but I managed a shower and washed my hair again before I settled on the sofa.  I did miss some of them as the eyes went southward but I needed the rest...it was hot out there and the mower seemed to get heavier as I went along.  I might even be thinking about a new one but one that propels itself to take some of the hard work out of it. It's going to be a good week weather wise so it should slow down the growth of the grass ...well here's hoping and I'm strimming tomorrow...I want to get the garden finished.  

Seven my time and I'm thinking about a visit to the kitchen to see what I can find.  Fish fingers have just come to mind and I have large potatoes to make some chippies so that should do just fine.  LN....Sorry no pickies...it's been a workday....LN
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Elsa Peters
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Sunday 21st July

So next door neighbours were still out in the garden at midnight and the child was still up and about and they were finding something amusing.  I had to shut the window and I felt quite crabby and that's not normally me but the child is only nine...time she was in bed.  With the sleep pattern disturbed, I read until three but I suppose the upside was that I didn't wake up in the middle of the night...I just started my second shift late...

I was out on the balcony at seven and one of my woodies was going round all of the eating places and it put me in mind of choosing the right restaurant or visiting a tapas bar.  It started off on the lonesome pine, headed down to the donkey at the bottom of the garden, went to the cherry tree but I couldn't get the camera to focus too well on that visit and then down to the wood that stops me from falling over the air pipe from the septic tank.  It didn't longer long at that one.  It also did quite a lot of ground feeding...it was obviously in need of nourishment this morning.  I couple of jays visited  the pear tree half way down the long wall but there very secretive birds and I didn't manage to get a shot of them.  The golden orioles were singing their little heads off but again....very illusive.  I went downstairs and made my second cup of coffee and sat out o the terrace under the umbrella drinking it.  That sun was hot and so I did  circuit and armed with my trusty scissor, I attacked the flags at under the walnut bed, cut them back and cleared out the old flower heads and the dead leaves from on top of the corms.  I should get a better show this next year.  I carried on up the low wall and cleared round the red hot pokers and they seem to be doing well.  The electric lawnmower came out and I did the yard and the grass outside the wall while I was waiting for the bread van.  I needed fresh bread and eggs, I'd decided on boiled for breakfast, so no sooner had he come than I made my breakfast, washed up, pegged out the washing that I'd done earlier while I was waiting for the kettle to boil for the coffee and made my plans for the rest of the day.

As for the list that I came up with, the main one that's still outstanding is to create a ramp my side of the gate.  It's easy to get the Beast out but the Nipper has trouble going over the concrete under the gate.  The one side is OK, it's where it's been cut away so that the rain water drains from the property under the concrete and into the lane when it throws it down.  That's still on the drawing board.  I started tidying up the workshop and putting things into plastic boxes that I bought the other day from the supermarket and now have to label them up....and I need some more boxes.

I watched the athletics this afternoon and the diving finals...it was too hot to be out.  Supper went in at five thirty and I went out at six to take a few pickies and saw tortoise having it's supper.  Woody has just come back for its top up before bedtime and I suppose I better go and check on the chicken and jacket potato...my top up before bedtime.  Time to put the toys away...the garden is looking good.  LN....Nothing so far for tomorrow but I might head in to Kardjali and find a swimming pool....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 22, 2019, 5:38pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 22nd July

Slow start for me this morning...eight thirty when the little one next door woke me up and it's a good job she did.  I was very slow off the mark, no coffee on the terrace I was more interested in toast for breakfast and then out to the terrace to water the pots that I'd missed last night.  Half nine came round and then ten and I was having issues getting motivated.  I think you know how it is...you imagine doing things positive, I had my mobile and house phone bills to pay, but then it seems to take ages to convert thought into action and then suddenly...you're off.

I got washed, shaved my legs, swimsuit on, long denim dress and linen jacket found from the wardrobe, swim bag checked, wallet checked and packed my tablet to read and by eleven I was in the car and setting off down the back lane.  I parked up near the phone shops in a hatched area along with a whole row of others and hoped no police were lingering and I seemed to have gotten away with it.  Paid over my six leva for the home phone, carried on to the mobile shop and was told that there was no bill, it was being taken out of the deposit I'd left when I took the phone out a few months back and I'm still in credit.  

It was a ten minute drive to my favourite swimming pool in that it kills two birds with one stone,  I can have a lovely day in a reasonably sized pool without any hassle and when I've finished complete my shopping in Kardjali.  Kaufland then Lidl, it was seven thirty when I got home and I must have been in the water for about one and a half hours. I'm absolutely knacked but have that lovely feeling of a day in the sun and fully exercised.

Shopping away and we've just had two peals of thunder so I'm thinking that there's no need to water the pots tonight.  I've gathered in the patio umbrella though in case the wind gets up and it does start to bucket down although looking at the sky....it could be on its way to Greece.  LN.....Time to relax....LN.      

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Elsa Peters
July 23, 2019, 6:22pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 23rd July

According to the Fitbit it was seven this morning when I came to life and what a brilliant morning it was.  Sun was shining it was a very calm day so I stripped down my bed and into the washing machine with it sheets and undercover.  I headed down to the garden and walked the estate carrying my first cup of coffee and removed some of the old lily stalks but feel that they need a little more die back.  I promised myself that I would remake the old bench but that's gone back on the 'to do' list...I didn't feel up to doing much.

Scrambled eggs for breakfast, washing hung out and I headed out to my bedroom balcony with my second coffee to top up my suntan on my legs after they'd had their first outing yesterday without getting them burnt.  I took the cushions out on to the bench, toyed with getting the sunbed from the upstairs in the little house to my balcony but it would have required strength and a length of rope and I really wasn't in the mood for expending energy.  I settled in to G or T and that's Game of thrones not gin and tonic....those days went ages ago....flipped through several of the chapters and concentrated solely on following Jon's story.  I came in when I got a little too warm out there and watched the result of the leadership battle on the big Kindle.  I didn't want to put the main machine on....it saps energy and time....so I went back to the little Kindle and took up the G of T story and realised that we'd probably just gone through out own.

The clouds came over and it was sun and shade for a while but it was still very hot.  I'd taken a bottles of water out with me so kept up my fluid levels and suddenly the wind got up so I  rescued the sheets from the washing line before they headed over to Greece and battened down the garden umbrella.  I made up the bed, took up residence and slept for a couple of hours and felt much better for it.  I checked back on my sleep history for the week and it was pretty poor until last night.  After today effort, or lack of effort, I'm back on average according to the Fitbit...result.  We appear to have had a shower while I was asleep so I'm not watering the garden tonight, I'm thinking about supper but it's probably cheese sticks and cream cheese tonight...I'm following the day's trend of little effort for a result.  

Swimming lesson for the little one tomorrow and I start my duty at ten if all goes well.....I'll wait to hear from his mother.  I'm just hoping that the sleep this afternoon hasn't upset tonight's pattern.  LN....I might even swim again tomorrow.....LN  
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Elsa Peters
July 24, 2019, 3:48pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 24th July

So I must have needed the sleep yesterday afternoon.  I went to bed at midnight and there wasn't a sound from the pavement probably because we don't have any.  Even next door was quiet  probably due to the anticipated rain that never came.  Funny old morning, I was out there by seven thirty and since there could only have been a smattering of rain which had only dampened the terraces, I was out there with the hose pipe firstly on the pots and secondly on the bonfire bed and the vegetable bed but I really needn't have bothered.  I sent a message to my swimmer's mum to see if he was still up for it.  There was intermittent sun here and she replied that he wanted to go for his lesson.  At nine forty five she was on the phone saying that it was raining in Kardjali and did I still want to go and I said it was up to the boy.  He was going to get wet anyway and the water would appear warmer but the Bulgarians don't really like to get wet.  If it's raining, they stay at home or go out with an umbrella.  Any way, we set off and as we did the heavens opened and the road was awash.  It had stopped by the time that we got to the pool and the instructor was sitting outside the gates but there appeared to be no takers.  The pool staff were obvious by their absence so we sat it out for about ten minutes and decided to go home.  We stopped off at Lidl, I bought a few things including donuts and chocolate for both of us and then we headed back to Djebel.

I sat in the shop for a while, the weather cleared up but then the torrential rain started again and it was two thirty before I set off for home.  I put the shopping away and it's turned into a chocolate box day weather wise, blue skies, huge white clouds, sun shining and a gentle breeze.  I was tempted to go out and do a bit to the garden but instead I switched on to  Mrs May's departure and Boris the Bold's acceptance speeches and me thinks he does promise too much but let's wait and see.  

No jobs to do tonight, swimming in the morning and I'm assured that the weather is going to be OK for it.  I have a wedding to go to tomorrow night with the rest of the ladies from the village and it's going to be held at Makaza...the hotel just outside Momchilgrad.  My history with the place and weddings...cold food and slow delivery and slow take away of used plates.    Let's hope it's improved for the guests.  A coach will be going but I might just take the Nipper and go down the back lane...I can come back if I feel the need to evaporate from the scene.  I've had a late lunch and picked my way through the afternoon so no food required for me tonight.  LN....Swim costume at the ready for tomorrow.....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 25, 2019, 10:14pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 25th July

It's been a disjointed day and a lot's been fitted in but I'm really ready for my virtuous couch.  I caught the sunrise this morning and we had the best mist in the mountains for a while and that had to be captured as well.  Woody was out at its various feeding spots but mainly on the ground today...maybe it had a headache and just couldn't face the noise.  I settled for melon and cherries for breakfast, put my swimsuit on with the intention of getting in a few lengths but it wasn't to be.  I picked up the boy and we managed to get a marking space in the venue which was a surprise, the teacher was there and he was stripped off and they were hard at it.  I'd stationed myself down the deep end of the pool and they normally operate at the shallowish end but today for some unknown reason they headed to where I was going to get slowly in the deep end mainly because the water is so cold and it was too much like hard work for me to change my position so I took to the book instead.  Eventually they all moved up the other end but by this time it was coming to the end of the lesson and I wasn't sure whether he wanted to stay and play with his new friends or not so I just got my nose in the book until he'd had enough.

I dropped him off at  one thirty, sat with his mother for a while discussing how to make salves from natural healing flowers and herbs and she gave me some of one that she's made to try out.  This one's got Calendula in it along with plantain, olive oil and beeswax and is supposed to be a healing slave for mosquito bites and itching skin so I'll be starting that off tomorrow.  I had a little rest this afternoon and at four I had a shower and washed my hair to start to get ready for the wedding.  The coach was picking us up in the village at six but I'd no idea what I was going to wear but it all came together nicely.  First bus took us to Djebel and we all piled off and got onto a coach for the final trip to the venue.

It turned out to be the same format for every BG wedding.  The food seems to come in drips and drabs and the final came didn't arrive until ten thirty.  I managed to get some long shots of the couple and I still don't recognise them but I know the family.  I'll surprise the grandmother with a picture of the couple tomorrow.  We all went to catch the coach for the trip home but there was only one so we had to wait.  His first trip was to Djebel, he dropped those off and then came back for our village people.  Home by midnight so I'm late posting but better late than never.  LN....It's been a full on day for a weekday....LN

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Elsa Peters
July 26, 2019, 6:28pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 26th July

It's been a funny old day today.  I phoned England for a catch up call and before I knew it it was getting on for eleven o'clock my time.  It was warmer in the UK though than here which is quite a surprise.  I cleared out the porch and intended and succeeded in washing the carpet and got it out to dry over the garden bench but before that I made a super big omelette, three eggs, a fried off red onion and when the eggs were set I added ham and grated cheese....and that has kept me going all day.

As I said I washed the carpet and the tiles in the porch...it was just looking in need.  I planted up some zinnias and tall white flowers that had been hanging around in pots of water and requiring love and attention and they only got it today.  They'd been discovered growing where they shouldn't and I had to give them a chance of life in another part of the garden.  I hate it when seeds germinate and feel guilty when I don't do anything with them.

As for this afternoon...it did get hot so I took to the sofa with the Kindle and that was it for a couple of hours.  Just before six and now the heat had gone out of the sun I decided to cut the grass and see how far I could go before I ran out of steam and I managed half of it, it was running out of fuel and I was running out of energy and I'll do the remainder tomorrow.  I came in and had a shower and updated my Fitbit wrapped in a bath towel and was heading up the stairs carrying yesterday's washing when I heard someone in the yard.  I clutched the towel closer round me, dropped the basket on the chair and slipped on a dress without anything underneath and went down to see who my visitors were.  It was Zelinger and her grandson who is a waiter in England and who speaks English quite well and they were delivering a joint of meat killed in remembrance of a twin who hadn't made it and a packet of biscuits from Turkey as a present from his parents.  They looked at the garden and Zelinger was amazed how many different flowers I have in my garden and hadn't seen what I call my grave garden before.  She didn't realise that I had another garden that you don't really notice.  Off they went....I suggested that he takes his grandmother to England so that she can learn English.  Out of all the women in the village she has the most potential and hasn't a bad bone in her body so to speak.  

Peanuts and orange juice for supper...it's one of those evenings.  LN....Achieve a lot at the latter part of the day....LN

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July 27, 2019, 6:59pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 27th July

It's been a day of two halves and the interlude was very exciting and very unexpected.  Six start, I watched the sun come up and managed to get out to the garden by eight and watered the pots.  We were heading for another scorcher.  I knew what the rest of my morning was and I think I was trying to put off starting it so I did jobs like mending the garden hose, I did fry  home grown tomatoes and had them on toast for breakfast and went down the bottom of the garden to start the bonfire.  I cleared the weeds from round the mower and dug out a rather large sheet of polythene that had been hanging around on the steps down to the lower room but I couldn't get it to go.  The polythene was too large to put on in one go and now it's sitting at the bottom of the garden awaiting my attention.  

At twelve I started the mowing which was totally the wrong time to be doing it and I stuck at it for about an hour but came in for a drink and five minutes on the sofa.  This time it didn't end in my eyes lids going south and soon I was out there again and finished the rest of it.  I di seem to thrown the machine around into the very weedy areas, closing my eyes as I did it hoping that it didn't throw up too many stones.  Eventually I gave up, put the machine away and headed inside again and this time I settled down with a packet of peanuts, more water and ended up with an ice-cream and at this point I did managed to get my head down for a couple of hours.   I'd not long woken up when a ringing sound came from my small Lenovo on the table in the stairwell and also from the Kindle.  I'd not had a call before over messenger and couldn't think who would be ringing me and it was my cousin's daughter from Australia....what a surprise.  We kept it going for about an hour and a half, covered lot of ancestry and family history that I'd not heard before and it was interesting coming from her side of the family.  Her grandmother and my mother were sisters but not really close and parental squabbles seemed to widen the gap.  I caught up with my cousin and her daughter when my Australian cruise called in to Freemantal and I spent the day with them both, met Linda's daughter and her grandchildren and we've kept in contact since.  

So for the second instalment.  I went out with the battery strimmer and did round the flower beds. I also dug out the wild flower that stood on the raised ground at the bottom of the lonesome pine and decided to dig the hole deeper and put an extra large flower pot in the hole so that I can either put flowers in it or one of the shrubs that I've got going.  The pot's inserted, the back fill is done and tomorrow I'll decide what I'm going to plant in it.  I'm not bothering with supper....it's been another 'picky' day and it's shower time and almost ten my end....it's the Voice Kids final this evening and I'm looking forward to it.  I know which one I want to succeed so fingers crossed.  LN....Shower to freshen before bedtime....LN

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July 27, 2019, 8:40pm Report to Moderator

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That is because it is your new master or mistress. It has adopted you and there is nothing you can do about it.

So you might as well give in gracefully and abide by his/her wishes.
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Elsa Peters
July 28, 2019, 6:58pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 28th July

Trevor...none of them moves when I shout at them...I am not a lover of cats but they love me for some reason.  I'm a dog person and why don't they understand that?...

So today has been a reasonably quiet day.  I was quite active this morning but as the day wore on the activity levels dropped and I just enjoyed the day.  I cooked bacon and egg but the bread when I got it out of the packet bad a small patch of mould on it...so I settled just for the good bits.  The bread van today doesn't arrive until ten thirty...it's Sunday...so we were all waiting for its arrival.  There was a lot of activity...Haciber was on her way back as I made my way down there but as I walked back with my Avatar, she was off there again.  Her daughter in law had arrived with the children and there was a birthday in progress and Haciber was providing the goodies.  I went into Avatar's garden for a sit down and a chat and then Beyser arrived and that put an end to the conversation.  With other locals we manage in Bulgarian and Beyser despite her age always communicates in Turkish.  Only understanding about ten percent of the conversation, I took leave and clutching my loaf of bread headed home.  

I'd watered the plants well last night so didn't have any work to do but I did move out the Bougainvilleas out the conservatory to give them a big drink.  It's not that they get under watered but I'm concerned that they might get over watered so I've designated spaces for them outside now and I'll be cutting the one right back tomorrow.  I didn't cut them back after flowering which I should have done and maybe I should have read the book earlier...story of my life.  The other thing that I was making a decision about was to clear the yard of the container that I made for the ballast for the workmen.  I don't think they'll be coming until the autumn, if at all this year, so I'm going to put in a flower bed against the wall and spread the gravel out and that will tidy up round the compost and water barrel.  It will made the bench stand out as well and be a better backdrop for it.

I took the little Kindle out this afternoon again picking out the best bit of the G of T's and then the message displayed letting me know that it needed a recharge so I had to move inside.  That in itself was dangerous...I settled down with the book and that used up two hours of my day but there again...it's mine to waste.  I did flick over to the World Swimming Championship and the men's success with a gold medal in the medley beating the Americans that have won it for the last twenty years.  Well done to the boys but the women came in last in the final....they need to step up or rather splash harden for better results.  I cooked chilli spiced sausage for supper and intended taking some over for my Avatar and suddenly noticed that it was just after eight thirty so I thought it was a little late so didn't bother.  I shall have enough left over for tomorrow so it will be into the slow cooker with it.  No pictures...I've just not got round to taking any.  LN...Gardening day or a day at the pool...not decided yet...I'll see how I feel.....LN
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Elsa Peters
July 29, 2019, 6:42pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 29th July

Well I beat the sun this morning and watched it come up and then watched it disappear behind the clouds.  Funny incident last night....there were strange noises coming from the bathroom end of the chimney and I anticipated a bird was stuck, eventually it found it's way to the woodburner but not into the burning area and there was no way that I could get to it.  I left it overnight and had forgotten about it until it was flapping against the glass this morning and since I'd been through this performance before...I knew what to do.  I closed all the doors in the downstairs lounge, closed the curtains to the stairs, opened the door to the conservatory and the door and fly screen out to the yard.  I opened the door to the woodburner and off it went, straight towards the light and off into the tree...and it appeared that no harm was done.  

I got on with a few chores, sorted the bonfire and got rid of the polythene, hoed the little new garden to get rid of the 'weedlings' and cooked bacon and egg for breakfast.  I tidied the pots but it got very hot out there so the strimming at the bottom of the garden could wait.  I needed the electric strimmer for that so instead I used the battery one to tidy round the flowerbeds, the yard and the grass between the house and the front wall and it was then that the thunder started and the first few spots of rain came.  I didn't need much convincing that it was time to pack up so I put my toys away, moved the cushions from the outside furniture to the plastic chest on he terrace and secured the umbrella.  It's done about six years and I'd like it to do more.

Swimming was off, it was warm enough and it would have been good but the clouds really came over and I couldn't raise the effort to head to Kardjali.  Gardening was off....what I needed to do required electricity and the strimmer and it was thundering and that's not a real good recipe on a hillside.  Reading, sleep and it's still raining now,  Last night's supper is about to be warmed up and will now become 'tonights', and then it will be an early night for me despite a lethargic day.  LN....Just a few pickies...LN

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July 30, 2019, 1:06am Report to Moderator

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'I am not a lover of cats but they love me for some reason.'

hat is just because cats have a skewed brain. Awkward for no reason!
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Elsa Peters
July 30, 2019, 5:08pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 30th June

Ah...that explains it then Trevor....maybe I was a cat in a previous life...I certainly have a skewed brain and I certainly can be awkward for no reason with some people...downright obstreperous as my parents would say and certainly my teachers.  I was told to wear a beret at school but with a beehive hairdo, I had to grip it on the back of my head to keep it there and certainly wouldn't accept as detention for it....I was wearing it...

I had a very turbulent night...the sheet was all over the place, not in the direction it was placed yesterday and in a half sleep state I was making the bed at five this morning just to get in another hour.  No need to look for the sun, it was a cloudy start to the day as I headed down at seven for coffee and I took it out to walk the garden and there was a gentle rain falling.  It was so fresh out there and I spent half an hour pulling out weeds.  They love this weather, wet and warm but tomorrow it's supposed to be up in the thirties again.  Bacon and egg for breakfast with fried bread, more coffee and I put a load of washing in as it appeared to be clearing up.  As I began to peg it out, a few drops started falling so in it came again, the stuff that would crease went on coat hangers and the rest was left in the basket until the weather improved.  I was in the need for music and started up my old ipod and got Rodriguez on at full volume.  I settled in doing catch-up pottering, the Librarian was coming round this morning, a little bit of computer work to be sorted and then I hung out the washing and we headed up to Djebel for lunch at the Soup Kitchen.  Over to the coffee bar to wash lunch down and then in to the Leva shop and wonder of wonder...I came out buying nothing...now that's a first.

We were home for three, she headed off and I took up the position on the sofa but no sleep this afternoon and so far so good.  We'd had a little more rain but I left the washing where it was and brought it in at around five and everything dry and ready to be put away.  I've now decided that I need one of those old fashioned clothes dryers that hang from the ceiling...I'll be checking out ebay.

The clouds have gathered yet again and it's still quite muggy.  No sunset tonight and lots of rising clouds that look like we could be in for yet more thunder and rain.  I think I shall be having to staple the bed sheet in place tonight....or take a few deep breaths and meditate before I get my head down.  LN...Swimming with the boy tomorrow....LN

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July 30, 2019, 5:22pm Report to Moderator

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30th continued....

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Elsa Peters
July 31, 2019, 4:35pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 31st July

Late to bed last night.....I was on a winning streak in Soda Crush and at two this morning I shut the Kindle down.  I could have been going until dawn but thought it best not to.  I slept OK and woke up at six thirty and headed out to the balcony to enjoy the morning.  The favourite bird was the woodpecker...two were in the mulberry tree knocking seven bells out of it and there was the lazy green woodpecker strutting the garden and picking up everything in sight.  He was probably on the sauce last night.  I went down and made coffee and went back upstairs to secure my position on the bench and carried on with watching my garden come to life.  It did come to my attention...the blasted mole had raised another couple of Vesuvius proportioned hillocks and today was the day that I was going to do something about it.

Into the Nipper for ten ten and I was over to pick up the other nipper.  I hadn't bothered with breakfast so uploaded a packet of biscuits onto the passenger seat...and they remain unopened.  The drive in was pretty normal, everybody jockeying for positions on the road into Kardjali but I turned off and took the back road but unfortunately there were no parking places at the pool so ended up at the pay car park.  I didn't pay to go in today...I wasn't going swimming and hadn't dressed for it, the little one headed for the swimming instructor and I headed for a bench in the shade.  It was a very hot day and I didn't want to bake.  Around the time that the lesson was about to finish I sat on the terraces and waited for the little one to decide he'd had enough and got changed.  I checked with the instructor that he was allowed to go tomorrow wince he'd paid for July and tomorrow we'll have moved on and I'm on swimming duties again.  I stopped for gas and petrol on the way home, a bottle of water for the boy and back to the shop.....and with moles of the garden variety in mind I went to the hardware shop intending to get mothballs to try to keep them at bay and he came up with some mole smokes....reminiscent of the ones I used to use in the UK.  I got my student's mum to give me a run down of the instructions and then we went to town on it thinking about sensible footwear, helmet, elbow length boots and safety glasses but better still would be running shoes...you have to light the touchpaper and run at least eight meters away.  Wish me luck.

On the way back home I called in the shop and bought a few items and stopped off at the waterboard offices, the hot water leaky pipe in the upstairs bathroom needed to be fixed.  I explained my problem to the lady int he office who I know very well and together we went down to find a water specialist, found one, he grabbed a tool box and I drove him home, he fixed the problem and I drove him back to work.  Ten lev for his trouble and I now have a working tap.  Unpacked the car when I arrived for the second time, tuna mayo sandwiches as a very late breakfast so I shan't be needing supper.  

So tomorrow we have swimming, the final one of the year and tomorrow afternoon I'm chasing moles from the garden.  LN...Better get the safety gear sorted....LN

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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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