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Elsa Peters
May 1, 2020, 4:00pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 1st May

Silly night, I went to bed at a reasonable time, decided to play Soda Crush and woke up with my finger still on the screen, about an hour later.  Glasses off, Kindle on the bedside table, lights out and no more disturbances until seven this morning.  Sun was up, mist was rising in the valley and it was a beautiful day even though the weather man had forecasted rain for today.  In fact it's been very much like yesterday, the clouds came over around two this afternoon, thunder rumbling around but we only had a few spots of rain...nothing to write home about.

I'm getting ahead of myself...I went out on to the balcony to watch the shepherd's wife walk the sheep over to the high field and she gave me a wave. I heard her husband yelling encouragingly to hurry them up, she probably had lots still to do at the farm.  I made myself a cheese and bacon omelette since the bread was still in the freezer, washed up the dishes from last night and left everything tidy, made my bed and dressed for the garden.  Today's task should I choose to accept it  and there was nobody else to ask was to see how much of the grass I could do and continue clearing the weeds from the side garden.  Because the grass was wet it would have to wait and I started on the garden until I'd had enough.  I can see more soil and have now found the technique to clearing it more easily.  I came in at twelve for water and five minutes rest and actually went out again at one thirty. ...it turned out to be more than the five minutes.  

I started on the main grass and found that I was not following the normal routine but it added spice to what is a boring job.  The first wave was down to the berberis  and I noticed that the Fitbit was running out of juice so i went in to put it on charge before it stopped registering my mammoth achievement and put the waterproof one on.  More water and back to it and managed to do the rest of the main grass but it was hard going.  Because the grass was wet it wasn't settling in the grass catcher but was clogging up the exit and I had to empty it more.  I'd finished it by four so I put the machine away and sat on the bench with some cheese biscuits and the water bottle.  I went in the house and tried to update the Fitbit so that both totals were added together and it was a slow process.  I had to switch the tablet off, it was flashing the total from the first one and then displaying the lower reading from the waterproof one and eventually I managed it.  I thought I'd do a bit more so went back to weeding and found that the broad bean that had stayed out all winter on it's own and not under the protection has broad bean pods on it so I cleared the debris from round it.  I've yet to check out the ones that spent winter under the polythene.

Not too bothered about supper....so far...the mood might take me later.  I'll finish the grass tomorrow, weather permitting otherwise I'm going to get into the same position as before, some long and some short.....and lots more weeding to do.  LN....Roll on summer...LN

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Elsa Peters
May 2, 2020, 5:06pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 2nd May

Good night's sleep according to my Fitbit although I felt that I was a little restless...who am I to judge!!  Heck of a thunderstorm last night and it rained and that seems to be the order of the day now.  We get a few weeks where the mornings are good, the clouds come over around lunchtime, the thunder rattles around a little and then we might have rain.  

Breakfast was another bacon and cheese omelette...the bread is still in the freezer, I didn't take it out because I intended going in to Djebel for a few things but I never made it. I have run out  sweet things to eat and it's just as well.  I dug out the bathroom scales from under the hand basin until and somehow they'd found their way to the back.  I stood on them and they didn't register anything so the hunt was on for a new battery and I found one...surprise, surprise...replaced it and I've worked out how much I need take off and to be honest...I was surprised that I hadn't put more on over the winter.  I opened a few windows upstairs and heard a strimmer so went into the spare bedroom and noticed that my painter was strimmer my Avatar's garden.  She's still in Germany and destined to return on the tenth of May...and it's all flight dependent.  He stopped and I though that he'd run out of petrol so I went to the gate and shouted over to him as he was leaving the garden.  I then heard him strike up again in Haciber's garden so I left him to it.  He appeared in the garden after ten minutes or so and he said that he was OK for fuel but could he leave his machine in the workshop until tomorrow...he had other jobs to do in the village and I think he wasn't really interested in what he was about.  I locked the workshop...better safe than sorry.

So out to the garden, more weeding and I continued with the vegetable garden and exposed the tulips from underneath the weeds.  I dug up a few of the parsley root and some of them are a decent size...and I thought I was growing parsnips and they'd wrongly labeled the packet...wrong....Perhaps they'll be useful for my neighbour with cows...they might like them.  I remembered that I'd done a load of washing and realised it would dry quicker out of the machine so hung it out.  As I turned round I notice the black cat looking towards the base of the terrace wall and was obviously looking at something.  It kept perfectly still and then suddenly shot under the lavender and came out with something ...I know now what ...headed over the wall and took to the bushes to devour whatever it was.  It's a hunter.  

I took five minutes on the terrace, looked at the remainder of the grass and made the decision to tackle it...and I did.  Absolutely shattered but that's another thing off the list and it does look good.  So back to the weeding....I've made a dent in it and it will probably take me another couple of days.  By the time that I've cleared it I should have plants ready to go in, my seeds are doing well.

I came in and synced my Fitbit.  I've done over twenty thousand steps today and that's the first time but the trouble is, once you set a new record...it's there to be beaten.  Supper is in the oven and I settled for local tinned corned beef, baked beans with a topping of sliced potatoes...it goes down well with brown sauce.  LN....I need to go to the kitchen.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 3, 2020, 4:42pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 3rd May

Straight through last night until just before eight and I was amazed.  I made coffee and went back to bed with Soda Crush and after about ten minutes remembered that I still had my painter's strimmer in the wood store so got a wiggle on and got dressed so that I didn't greet him in my PJ's.  I unlocked everything at nine and went out to check on the pot plants and noticed that he was waiting by the gate for me to open up the drawbridge.  He wanted his machine so I unlocked the wood store and he went in and brought it out.  He was off to Avatar's house to cut the side garden and I reminded him that there were a few shrubs nestling in the grass.

I came in and made toast and slathered jam on it...so much for the diet and then went outside to work it off.  I'd set my target on the frog garden little beds and they're still waiting. My attention was drawn yet again to the vegetable patch and I slaved on it like a good'un, the beds are all clear, the parsley root is over the wall and I'm hoping that the cows will take to it.  It's made me realise that the crop has seriously broken up the bed to a greater depth and I only wish that they were parsnips not parsley root.  I thought that seed vendor had made a mistake on the label...and they did look like parsnips so it was an easy mistake to make on my part.  My painter came back and again asked me if I was going into Djebel and I told him that I'd had a message that it was going to be possible to get into main towns without documentation so I was giving Djebel a miss.  He left the machine in the workshop while he went off somewhere else and when he came back to collect his machine I went back with him to point out where the shrubs were...too late...they were no longer and issue.  He didn't last long, said that his shoulder was aching so the rest is yet to be done and off he went.

I came in for a short time and noticed that my lovely daughter had phoned so I called her back and we chatted for around forty minutes about nothing in particular as you do with daughters.  They were supposed to be going to Florida in June but that's now cancelled and are deciding whether to go for a voucher on the flight or the refund.  Did they want a fight or not????  I went out again and by this time the clouds had rolled over and it looked like rain.  I carried on though and separated out the broad beans from the weeds and knocked up a couple of supports and nailed a blank between them, the tulips that I've dug up are planted in a bucket and the poppies are in the new bed at the base of the little house terrace.  I came in, it was now dropping serious ran so I put the tools away, locked up the work shops, cleaned my wellies under the water container and that was me done for the day.  

I came in and was amazed to see that it was half past five...where had the day gone.  I lit a fire, made corned beef sandwiches for supper, have eaten the said sandwiches and am catching the end of Tenable.  It looks like the rain has set in for the night and at least it's good for the garden but to date there are no seeds planted...that's tomorrows job...beetroot and parsnips...I repeat...parsnips.  LN....Hot bath tonight I think....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 4, 2020, 4:27pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 4th May

Rain, rain, go away...come again another day....but I did have a day off.  I woke up at five thirty, coffee, back to bed, a few games, emails and wasted time on FB...but not much else to do.  I moved last night's log to the back of the burner so that I would have it for tonight...and I did.  There were two lingering and they formed the basis to make it a quick job.  I was fascinated, a few of the sheep had blue markings on them but more than normal.  They either been well tupped or or the paint dispenser, took a good shaking and went everywhere and it appears that I was shaking and at full stretch when I took the photo....apologies.

The garden looks good and I'm really pleased with the effort on the vegetable garden and the weeds and parsley root that I slung over the wall were really appreciated by the livestock.  The shepherd had to move them along but they were back towards the middle of the morning.  They must have heard of the properties of parsley root and I was sent the details in an email.  I'll put a single row in this year, thin them out and use them in the same season, not over winter them.   Poached egg for breakfast, followed by toast and jam and then I started watching the morning television which I soon got bored with.  I think they all work to the same negative format with such morose questions and no Piers this morning..and no news about him.  

I settled on the rocking chair in the bedroom and put a plastic bowl upside under my feet to maintain the balance.  I played Sudoku and despite the fat that it was only eleven thirty I fell asleep, it must have been something to do with the extreme day yesterday.  I was half asleep and half awake and it was two thirty when I came round. I went downstairs and noticed that there was a bunch of spring onions on my outside table and thought that they had come from my neighbour with the next door garden and was surprised when Haciber appeared at the window so I went to the door.  They were a gift from her.  I asked her about my Avatar and if she was still coming this week but apparently there are no planes so she is coming in June and by then the two weeks self isolation might be over.

I lit the fire at four, it's nice and cosy, it started to dry up but then started to rain again.  I did one circuit of the garden and checked on the poppies that I'd rescued and planted int he bed under the little house terrace and at least they're standing.  I need to something with corned beef tonight since I opened the can yesterday...decisions, decisions.  LN....A very easy day.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 4, 2020, 4:44pm Report to Moderator

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More pickies

I caught the sheep coming home and the poor shepherdess ended up carrying both the little ones for a time, one then the other and the mother was watching everything that was going on.  She seemed to have red and blue on her fleece maybe to distinguish her from the rest of the flock.  And again at full stretch in the rain...LN

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Elsa Peters
May 5, 2020, 4:40pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 5th May

Somehow I was still awake at one this morning and I've felt shattered all day.  I woke up at six, the sun was about to make an entrance but it was very cloudy and misty and it took ages for it to emerge.  I made a  coffee but decided not to drink it.  I've either eaten something that's not agreed with me or I've picked up an allergy to coffee....it's made me feel uncomfortable, burping frequently so I left breakfast alone and settled for plain yogurt.  That saw me through until this afternoon.

My get up and go has gone for today....I intended planting up the beetroot, parsnips and parsley root but it slipped off the radar.  I washed and dressed, sat in the stairwell with the Sudoku book and felt extraordinarily sleepy so I let the feeling overtake me, I moved to the sofa and didn't wake up until one thirty.  I just felt that I needed to catch up...the excess stepping over the weekend had also taken it out of me so I didn't want to push myself at all today and I didn't.

I switched on the computer on the landing and in my emails I'd had suggestions about family member that I'd been trying to trace.  I still can't get beyond my 1797 'greats' grandfather so decided to ask the provider for help.  I got the normal response advising me 'have you tried this' etc., and believe me I've tried everything and just can't tie down his parents at all and of course, I need that to go backwards.  

Nothing for supper tonight...I'm really giving me tummy a rest but the other thing I've don is to put up a weight chart in the bathroom so that I can start keeping track of the weight loss / weight if the self imposed diet doesn't work.  Regarding our lock-down.....I believe the advice is to be updated tomorrow.  I don't think it will made a difference to me though...I've got into the habit of 'staying home'...unlike most Bulgarians.  We'll 'wait for the next wave to follow.  LN....Back to the ancestry search....LN
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Elsa Peters
May 6, 2020, 4:48pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 6th May

Seven start and not a bad morning.  Sun was up, clouds were high and it looked like we were in for a good day.  I'm still not on top form so was looking for another gentle day and I found it.  The news is that there is no need to take documentation with you to get into Kardjali so I might be doing in it later in the week...I just reckoned that the world and all its friends might be heading in and doing massive shops for store cupboards and freezers....mine can wait.

I didn't bother with coffee, I went out on to the terrace and plucked a lemon from my tree and made what used to be my favourite drink.  Lemon juice, hot water, honey and salt and took it back to bed with me.  I'm going to leave off the coffee and see if that changes things.  I toasted a couple of slices of bread and skimmed it with butter and sat on the bench on the terrace eating it.  The birds were very vocal this morning...it was so quiet and it's amazing how many different songs there are.  I was out there sitting in the sun and I decided to get my winter coat from my legs and repaint my toe nails.  I changed from the jeans that I'd put on originally and put a pair of loose cotton ones so that I could roll them up, got a bowl of hot water with shower gel in it and my razor and did the deed.  I didn't stop there, I gave myself a foot pamper and painted my nails...summer is a 'cummin'.    I even took my jumper off and enjoyed the sun and kept my trousers rolled up for my first summer sun coating.  Unfortunately the clouds started to come over, I brought in the tools of the trade and settled on the sofa with the Kindle.  Sleep overcame me and for the next two hours I was off with the fairies.  I read for the rest of the afternoon and at four lit the fire.  It wasn't cold but we are in for a very wet, drab evening and I've still got wood so I might as well enjoy it and it's chucking it down now.

Supper is still in the freezer so not sure if I actually want anything tonight....I'll leave it until later,  I suppose if the weather is like this tomorrow I might head into Kardjali...Bulgarians don't like rain so might all be staying home.  LN....Weather dependent yet again....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 7, 2020, 5:00pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 7th May

Good night's sleep and woke up at six thirty.  It was a misty old morning and it seemed to take ages for the mist to burn off and when it did, it was a beautiful day but that wind was cold.  I took a pint of lemon tea to bed with me and started playing Soda Crush and for some reason I was on form or the program was feeling sorry for me.  I managed to knock off eight games and most of those at the first attempt but now I have a really difficult on on the go and that should take me a few days at a guess.

Sliced sausage and an egg for breakfast and that's my diet up the shoot already.  I followed it with another bucket of tea and it seems to have done the trick.  The coffee is supposed to be Gold Blend but I'm not sure if it's been made under licence and the composition is different.  I've been drinking it for years without any problem or maybe it's just me.  I tidied the kitchen, filled up the log basket and the starter wood bucket form the wood store and settled on the sofa with the Kindle and caught up on emails and FB.  I walked the garden when I got into the action mode but it didn't last long and I seem to have meandered through the day.  I toyed with Djebel or Kardjali and did neither but at four I decided that I should tackle the little frog garden and get rid of the weeds and the moved on to the rose bed and the stone beds round the trees on the low wall.  I was a bit surprised, Guljan's father appeared on the terrace yelling my name and I thought at first it was my painter.  He asked me where I'd been since he hasn't seen me out and about and I said that the virus had kept me home.  I think they think that Bulgaria doesn't have a problem and only have the impression that the problem is in England.  The government are talking about opening up tourism and guest houses and will put measures in place to open hotels so that the summer season can commence.  I hope it doesn't come back to bite them in the bum.

I came in at six thirty, the sun is still out but that wind almost tempted me to light the fire but a snuggle down in bed and an early night might be on the cards.  I missed the full moon rising a couple of nights ago and last night that wasn't a snowball in hell's chance since the rain set in and it absolutely threw it down but last night I did have a fire.  I'm going to try and catch it tonight.  LN....Time for PJ's and a sweatshirt.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 8, 2020, 5:34pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 8th May

Little bit of a silly night last night...woke up at three and not an ounce of sleep in me so played silly games until four and then managed to get off again and went through until eight.   Having seen a photo of the full moon on a friend's FB page I just happened to catch a glimpse of it coming up last night so I'll bore you with the pickies,  I was going to put it on FB but it was too much like hard work last night and I've just been too busy today.  I washed and dressed since I was expecting guests this morning and obviously safe distancing on the terrace,  I cooked bacon and made and omelette and cleared up the kitchen and sat in the sun in the stairwell doing Sudoku and listening to the morning television and obviously shouting at it  when I stupid question came up and was listening to Boris' father when my guests arrived bearing gifts.  Sweet peas freshly picked form their garden and some butternut squash plants ready for planting out.

We sat on the terrace with coffees and I had tea and put the world to rights.  We came round to discussing flower seeds and I went inside and came out with my flower seed pot and had the mickey taken out of me because of my descriptions of the contents written on the envelopes.  'Pedrea's white things' doesn't give much of an idea as to what the flower looks like but I know what they are and I would recommend them for anyone's garden.  We managed to find several that they wanted and they went away happy bunnies.  They left around twelve thirty and I made the decision to go into Kardjali and get my shopping and driving in in the little one was really weird.  The last time I'd been out in the Nipper I'd had the warning that the gas was finished so I switched over to petrol and then I'd not used it until this morning.  I stopped off at the garage shop and dropped off a couple of shrubs that I brought on and carried on to Kardjali and as I hit the main road the gas warning sound came on again and so I switched over to petrol.  I thought I was running on petrol anyway so I somehow must have done a double click on it last time and it must keep 'cooking on gas' for quite some time,  Anyway into the gas station in Kardjali, filled up and now I know that I'm running on gas, the green light is on.  

On to Kaufland with my list and I'd crossed off four items and had a pretty full trolley and it was eight leva at the checkout.  Four essential items, eighty leva and on to Lidl, the rest of the list knocked off apart from the items that I wanted from Djebel and that was another eight eight leva but at list my list was complete.  Back to Djebel for the remainder and I was pleasantly surprised with a nineteen leva bill and my first spend up for about five weeks.  Parked up under the tree so that I can mow the yard tomorrow...too late to do it after I'd unpacked and put away the shopping.  The fresh chicken legs and wings have been put in the freezer and supper was a rib of flavoured pork so I've nibbled my way through a whole one.

Apparently we're in for a good dry spell so it's gardening tomorrow but I've got to take it carefully.  I appear to have knackered my elbow so I called in for the 'Deep Heat that I'd left at the garage when he had trouble with his neck.  I've rubbed it well into the joint and put a support on it and wrapped it in an elastic bandage.  It really hurts when I lift up a fairly full kettle so I better stop doing that then,  LN...Want to watch Captain Tom's story tonight...what a man....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 9, 2020, 6:03pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 9th May

A day of two halves.  Fairly leisurely morning, normal hot tea to bed, Soda Crush and I was breakfasting on bacon and egg at eight. I moved the car outside the wall with the intention of using the electric mower to cut the grass.  I suddenly noticed that there was a bag of hay near to the gate and I couldn't understand it for a minute but then the penny dropped, it was the one that I'd filled up the water meter box with so that it didn't freeze up over the winter.  I'm assuming that the water board had been round and read it for the first time this year so I either have a rebate or a thumping big bill.  I shall know when it gets taken out of my bank account.  I'd slept last night with a bandaged elbow after I'd rubbed in some Deep Heat so I unpacked it and repacked it with more cream.  The elastic bandage had not got much elasticity left in it so this mornings plan was to take money out of the cashpoint and go to the chemist and buy more bandage a tube of Reparil gel ...so recommended for sports injuries and weeding, although not a recognised sport is still considered dangerous and not only to weeds.

I headed into Djebel after I had spoken to my painter who was finishing off strimming Avatar's paddock.  He mentioned that he had knacked his wrists doing the strimming so I said that I would get him a support bandage and that he could do the equivalent value of the bandage in work...he doesn't like charity or debts.  I had ten minutes with my student's mum in the shop, went to the chemist and made my purchases and since they only had one bandage I went to the little one over the road and bought another two...a spare for me and one for my painter.  Back to the car and over to the little supermarket for a few items and then back home.  I left the car outside the gate, put the shopping away, settled on the sofa at twelve and woke up at two,lingered until two thirty and then decided the who day couldn't be wasted.

I managed to get the wheels adjusted so that the machine didn't keep stopping and starting, finished the yard and then move on to the grass between the wall and the front of the house.  It didn't stop there....I moved on to the grave garden to the side of the house and cleared underneath the bushes.  The little grass mower is standing p tot he job and so is my black cat.  There was another mole lying on the grass and this is definitely different than stated on the internet.  According to one site I visited the is supposed to be one mole per acre since they are quite territorial and solitary.  I've had three caught in and around my garden in the last month..nobody has informed the miles and cats.  The elbow stood up to the treatment well and I ended up weeding the under wall liberating some of the plants. especially from the climbing, clinging ones.  I came in at five thirty, tools away and chicken wings and a jacket potato straight into the oven.  Watched a little tv. had supper, the washing up can wait and I've put the boiler on for a bath.  The new cream will go on the elbow and I'll strap it up for the night and weather permitting...the rest of the grass will be done tomorrow.LN...Bath time....LN

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May 10, 2020, 4:31pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 10th May

Well an early start and I put on TV and cried through Davina Macalls's programme about long lost families where the children were given up at birth.  I then found myself watching Goggle box and never caught it before and was amused by the commentary about Michael Portillo's attempt at joining in with a Bulgarian Fold dance troop...I suppose he did his best.  I was out of bed by seven thirty, washed and dressed and didn't bother with breakfast.  I think I ate too much last night hence the disturbed night and early start.  I'd strapped the elbow up last night after my bath and rubbed in lots of the new gel and probably should have unwrapped it this morning and completed the procedure again but it was too much like hard work.  I've stuck to my regime of hot tea and left off the coffee and feel much better for it...I'll give it a rest for a while.

First job was a bonfire with the household waste and I headed for the wood store at eight thirty and I took the little electric lawnmower and the strimmer to the bottom of the garden.  The electricity cable was unreeled and seventy five meters or so went down the bottom of the garden and I wired it up to the electricity supply from the workshop.  I got distracted though and started on manual labour first...removing the weeds from the fairly big garden by the bonfire.  I suppose it's all due to the very heavy rains in March that the weeds this year seem to have put down deeper roots than I've noticed before.  I managed to unearth a jasmine that I'd forgotten about and most of the garden is now clear of weeds.  There's just one central hidden section but now that I've strimmed between the wall and the back of the bed I shall be able to tackle it from the other side.  Next step was to put the little lawn mower to use but the grass catcher was full in quicksticks so I did most of it without the catcher on....much quicker but I stood one side of the grass exit, one or two stones were being tossed out at some speed.  So back to it but this time with the strimmer where it was really long, I finished the bottom of the garden and back to the bonfire.  I came in for a five minute break, lay on the sofa at about two and slept for an hour or so.  I went back out and carried on strimming until I ran out of cable, I came in at six, tools away and re-threaded the spool.  It's been a good days work.  

Weather permitting I'll mow the rest of it tomorrow and then concentrate on the bottom gardens, I've got some balsam plants that I can take from the long wall garden and they seem to do well without much human intervention.  I've also got a few shrub plants that I can try down the bottom...they make life so much easier.  No pickies today I've been too busy....I'll show you the results tomorrow.  LN....Seven thirty and I'm on the hunt for supper......LN
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Elsa Peters
May 11, 2020, 4:03pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 11th May

Six start so I watched a little of Judge Rinder to relax before I set out of the challenge I'd set myself for today. The grass was beckoning me, I'd done well with the electric mower yesterday but it wasn't up to the job for today.  I've got this idea that it might be useful to run the electric one over the very weedy bits of the lawn more regularly but having said that it might just turn out to be a patchwork version of what I have now...back to the drawing board Cecil.

A pint of hot black tea to start the day which I took back to bed with me and I was washed and dressed by seven thirty, the washing had gone into the machine just after six so I was pegging it out by six thirty and I didn't bother taking new socks from the draw...the ones that I put on were taken from the line.  I started on the grass at eight and made a gallant effort finishing off half of the big lawn by ten more or less.  I came in to give my strapped up arm a rest, lay on the sofa with the Kindle and promptly dropped off for an hour. When I woke up I realised that I'd not had breakfast so made bacon and egg sandwich, turned on morning tv and saw Piers Morgan was back so closed my Kindle down.  So back to it and finished the big lawn and rode roughshod over the bumpy ground at the bottom...it's a good old mower.  I came in again at around twelve, sat out in the sun with my water bottle and again the sun made me drowsy so again I had forty winks.  It was really hard sweaty work and I think I needed the breaks.  

This time, no more breaks, I started again at two and finished the little house lawn, came in at four thirty and my challenge for today was over.  It's a big job but there's no one else to do it, I really must line up a gardener and my painter seems to be the only one in the village that's vaguely interested in doing things for the old ladies and I think I'm rapidly joining the ranks.  Strimming tomorrow or a day off in Kardjali, I have my annual tax to pay on the Beast and I need to go to the Statistics office to finalise my company declaration.  I might even spin a coin to see which comes up trumps.  Off for a shower to remove the layer of salt from my body....I've perspired well today.  LN....I should be slimmer after this......LN  

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Elsa Peters
May 12, 2020, 5:28pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 12th May

Another early start, it was four thirty when I woke up and no sleep left in me.  I made tea, took it back to bed, played a Soda Crush game that I've been stuck on for about four days and without they give me smarties or bombs I shan't be moving on.  I do refuse to pay for the extra moves or tools.  I was out of bed by seven, washed and dressed and cooking scrambled eggs for breakfast and washing up by eight.  Too early I shout.

I settled down with my Sudoku book and knocked off three games, I was actually working up the enthusiasm and energy to get out there and dig for victory.  I'd changed the cord in the strimmer late last night and unfortunately I'd wound the cord round the wrong way.  So I changed it and got it working again.  I started by pulling out the Mikey B bench from under the cranberry near the long wall and was amazed to see that the wood has gone rotten.  I dragged it over to the terrace and there it will stay until I work out how to do it.  I cleared where the bench had been and the terrace, there is now a path between the wall and the back of the bed and then I started to clear the weeds and try to remember where the plants were last year.  I kept having five minutes for water breaks...it's been a hot old day once the wind dropped.  The bed was cleared, I found some marigolds and moved a couple to the other side of the bed, I brought a couple of plants from the terrace and they're now dug in and watered and should be OK.  I also separated a pot of roses that I'd picked up cheaply from Kaufland and planted five of them in a group.   It's looking good.

I came in and settled on the sofa, felt really tired but didn't manage to nod off.  I watched Loose Women and it was so funny today....they don't have to appease the audience since there isn't one.  I went out again and carried on with the bushes along the long wall, uncovered the roof tiles that are destined for a structure where the old toilet was and freed the iris and the daisies from the nearby bed from the clover, grass and vetch.  Tools away at six thirty and again I've not prepared any supper so far.  I think it will be tuna mayo with beetroot, it's quick to do.  LN....More of the same tomorrow.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 13, 2020, 4:29pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 13th May

What a sobering though...even though nothing alcoholic has passed my lips for the last three or so years....today I would have been married for forty eight years if it has lasted.  I almost sent my ex a goodwill message but I think his current wife wouldn't really have appreciated it...   So much water under that bridge and I wouldn't have swapped anything at all....it's good to look back and smile at times and giggle at others.

Seven start and after yesterday's achievements it's been a meandering day.  I didn't have a plan, the weeding of the rest of the bonfire bed could wait but I've got quite a few jobs done.  I'm ahead of myself, bacon and cheese omelette this morning, dishes washed, me washed and dressed and it was eight thirty and the rest of the day was before me.  It was one of those days where you seem to move from job to job and they don't seem to be linked up but by three thirty this afternoon I could tick off a few from my list...that's not the written one, it's the other one that's in my head.

I trimmed the geraniums, cleared the patio pots of weeds and cut back the dying tulips and planted some baby tobacco plants in between them.  I removed the dead oleander from its pot and that's ready for something else and put the potting compost in one of the giant pots that are both empty and awaiting attention.  I pulled out one of my large plastic bowls from under the bench on the terrace and noticed that it had quite a bit hole in the bottom and wouldn't be much use as a bowl and put it to oneside.    Walking through the little house I noticed the garden umbrella and thought it was time for it to be out of the terrace...and it is and I found a use for the bowl...it's nestled on the base with the umbrella post going through it.  I'll get some petunias to fill it, they're pretty.  I did have one brain stretcher, I normally support the umbrella to my balcony  with a bungy cord...the wind across the hillside can sometimes be quite fierce.  Only problem was that from the balcony I couldn't manage to reach the umbrella support and that's quite a long story but eventually I managed it but when I came back to the terrace I noticed that I'd pulled it too far and the top joint was a little bit cocked.  I had two choices, take it all apart or risk removing the concrete triangles and try to rectify the angle...and I did.  I looked at it for a good twenty minutes before I attempted it but it worked out alright in the end.  The big stone that I've been trying to move since I trimmed back the lavender is now moved using the metal garden spade...it was now free space to put in one of the logs that were stored by the side of the house.  It's in situ but the stone is still in the garden..I hadn't got the energy to move it.

I came in for the afternoon and settled on the sofa and yes...I catnapped for a couple of hours, went out and tidied the tools away.  I came in and put a chicken leg in the oven with potatoes, onions and beetroot and it's ready now.  I might even finish off with a bowl of ice-cream.  LN....My supper awaits....LN

PS....My Bee eaters are back....

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Elsa Peters
May 14, 2020, 6:13pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 14th May

Horrible night...I woke up at four thirty and that was the end of my sleep.  I played games for a while drinking my black tea and had stripped the bed and first load was in the washing machine, second load finished and pegged out by eight.  I washed and dressed making the decision that I would go into Kardjali to pay the tax on the Beast and get my information to the Statistics department for the company.  I suppose one out of two isn't bad in the success rate.

I settled for toast for breakfast but as I removed the slices from the wrapper I detected a few spots of mold so the cats benefited and I opened the bun loaf and buttered a couple of slices and that was breakfast sorted. As I walked for the car my painter was walking to work he declined my offer to come back with anything for him from the grand 'metrolopes', I'd forgotten all about the time and was amazed when I realised it was only nine thirty.  I stopped off at the garage shop and asked the same question and she was fine too so I carried on and parked up near to the Statistics Office walked up the stairs to the third floor and there was a closed gate which I tried and it opened.  Beyond the gate was a table and a piece of string over the next set of stairs stopped my rise to the destination on the fourth floor, forms were set out on the table and lots of notices ...in Bulgarian.  I recognised the form from the previous year, started to fill it out in Bulgarian and realised I didn't know what I was doing so I took another form and headed back to the car.  I'd ask my guru in the car shop later on my way home.  Next to the payment office and again there were lots of forms on the door...all in Bulgarian so I cautiously carried on to the second floor and waited by the door.  An assistant came out, I was beckoned in and paid my tax or just over one hundred leva for the year.  Success....I can now use the Beast and my plan to collect the mulching material from the side of the road to spread on the garden is taking shape.

I paid both telephone bills and at least one of them was practicing social distancing allowing only two paying customers in at a time.  I moved on to the biggest hardware shop and managed two by forty litres of compost and then on to Kaufland and I bought the plants for the compost and the hanging rail that I wanted to move to the room that I have my guests in if this lock-down for travel is ever lifted.  On to Lidl for another few items, Back to Djebel and got the form translated so I can complete and delver probably Monday, into our local hardware shop and bought more garden solar lights for the garden.

I drove home and unpacked the shopping putting the plants into a bit bowl of water until tomorrow.  I was too hot and bothered from the morning to think about starting again, toyed with fetching the washing in and making the bed up and even that would wait.  I settled on the sofa and it was three hours later when I woke up so I was obviously catching up  on the sleep I'd missed out of overnight.  Washing in, bed made, water bowl topped up for the plants, I'd had a ham baguette before I went to sleep so there's no supper for me.  LN...Restful gardening day tomorrow.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 15, 2020, 5:01pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 15th May

Much better night, toyed with the idea of sleeping upstairs but crept into my clean nest and snuggled down.  Seven start and the sun was up already, well I say 'up' but it took until two this afternoon to break through the cloud base and by the time that it did, it seemed to disappear just as quickly again.  It's been a hot humid day.  Breakfast was interesting...I used up the roasted veg from the night before last, fried them off and added bacon to the mix and made it into an omelette.  Kitchen tidied, me washed and dressed, I was slow off the mark this morning and then I spent an hour or so walking the garden, sitting and listening to the birds with my extra glass of tea.  I cam in and tuned in to morning TV and promptly turned it off.  They were at it again trying to get the leader of the Welsh assembly to slag off Boris and the government.   He was so goo and wouldn't do it despite pressure...one to be admired.

I eventually got outside after a few Sudoku and my first challenge was to put together the wigwam metal thingy that I'd bought yesterday.  It looked like it had been opened already and I hadn't noticed in the shop but with relief, everything was there.  The instructions were pretty screwed up, for what they were worth, but they had included a diagram of how (a) fits to (b) etc and with a little effort, I did it.  It did take some lining up though, the bolts had to go through pre-drilled holes so I worked out that if I put a screwdriver in the holes first, I could pull the thing into shape.  I'm still not sure what I'm going to do with it or what I'm going to grow up it but the sweet peas do require something.

My painter came in for a chat and i discussed going to pile of pine tree outers that has been left by the loggers by the roadside.  I described what I wanted to do with it , use it as a mulch and he suggested that it was better to pick up the fallen needles from the forest and put it on the garden around October time.  Haciber shouted to me while I was tidying up the yard and she was off to see Remsie's husband, the one they all turn to when they have any problems with the house or garden.  One good thing, he now charges them the going rate which doesn't go down too well, he used to work for a two litre bottle of beer but not any longer.  

I came in at six thirty and then went out again to lock up the little house.  As I walked from the terrace into the little house I looked up and thee was a little black and white face looking at me.  Either she's sitting on eggs or one has hatched already.  There's been no sign of the bee-eaters today at all, maybe the pickings are better further afield.  No idea about supper so far...I'm thinking fish fingers....or nothing.  I'm not that hungry.  LN....A good diet day.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 16, 2020, 5:17pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 16th May

Another day of two halves....Usual morning and poached eggs on ham for breakfast so that I had a good start to the day.  I played around with the pot plants and watered everything in sight even though that sun was stuck behind a hazy sky until lunchtime.  I moved the Beast out of the garage and it fired first time which surprised me.  I'd been caught like that before when I'd got it started, switched off the engine and there wasn't enough juice left to start it to get it back into the garage.  I thought about driving it down to the lake to fill up the water bottles from the spring or into Djebel to get it washed but instead I kept it running in the drive and put it back where it came from.

I decided to attack the cotoneaster growing at the base of my special pine tree, it had become assaulted by clover, vetch and sticky willy making it unsightly and difficult to strim and mow round.  I worked on it for an hour or so, went in for a water break and suddenly felt incredibly tired.  Tools were all over the garden but I didn't do anything about it, I settled on the sofa and I sort of went to sleep but I didn't, half awake and half asleep and the dreams were vivid and very short.  I woke up for real and lay there for about half an hour summoning up the energy to get back out there.  

Back to normal...the base of the tree is cleared, the rubbish is over the wall for the animals even though there's loads of it over there already, a running buffet or a grazing buffet for them.  The cows came over this afternoon and they are incredibly noisy when then munch the grass.  I then took to strimming round the borders of the old fire pit and along the borders of the low wall.  One or two daffodil leaves became casualties but they've had plenty of time to get some stores in for next year.  I moved a few pots around and noticed that one of the big ones awaiting planting has lost one of its handles...I think the hot glue gun has to come out tomorrow.  Tools away, battery from the strimmer back on charge for tomorrow and I think the big hedge trimmer is coming out tomorrow.  The forsythia in the frog garden is getting higher by the day and blocking the view of the bottom of the garden so it needs to be reduced as does the lime shoots behind the large berberis.  They block out the view of the hillside from the terrace.

Every day there is something to do.  I decided to make a list of the jobs but I always seem to find things to do that aren't on there.  Bee-eaters are back....where's the camera.....but by the time that I got ready, they'd gone somewhere else.   LN.....Save it for another day.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 17, 2020, 6:01pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 17th May

I had a really early night, slept through until just before seven and woke up feeling very refreshed.  I took my tea outside and sat on the terrace listening to the birds..the nightingale had been going for it when I went to sleep and again when I woke up and the martins were very active...with lots of  visitors.  As for the cuckoos...there were two of them having a right old ding-dong.  I'm not sure if they were male female and she was playing hard to get or they were fighting over territory.  They are such big birds and make quite a noise in flight.  I made toast and put the last two slices of ham on it and a couple of cheese triangles and sat in the stairwell munching it.  Washed, dressed for gardening and I was ready to face the day.

My plans for reducing overgrown post flowering shrubs was put on the back burner.  As I walked up from the bottom of the garden chasing the cuckoos, my attention was drawn to Mikey B's bench that was still upside down on the workshop terrace.  I went into the workshop and gathered up a few tools, screwdrivers and hammer and WD40 to spray on the reluctant screws and they came out without much effort.  A lot of them fell out, the wood was so rotten so I took a few measurements, cut up some wood, decided to leave it and then went back to it.  I was going to do it properly by drilling holes and screws but I couldn't find a good enough drill bit and there was no way I was driving in to Djebel so I resorted to nails.  It's done but as I turned it upright the other cross rail and one of the legs shed wood fibers so I know that I have to replace the others but by this time it was getting late.  I'd put the local bug killer on it and stained the new to look more or less the same as the old wood but it will all need doing again when the new legs are on.  It could and probably should have been the last of the bench, it is ten years old but I just couldn't let it go.

I swept the terrace to get rid of the rotten wood and onto the bonfire with it and I set fire to it.  Fish finger sandwiches for supper, not exactly a Sunday roast, but it filled the gap.  No plans for tomorrow as yet...I'll see how I feel in the morning.  LN......And now relax......LN

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Elsa Peters
May 18, 2020, 4:45pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 18th May

Early to bed last night and woke up at five, again at six and at seven it seemed a good time to face the world.  A few games on the Kindle, hadn't bothered with FB or email and went out to view the garden and have my first tea outside.  I boiled a couple of eggs and had toast with then, the second toast I covered with Apricot jam and settled down on the sofa intending to catch up on the things I'd missed this morning.  Surprisingly I had a message from my buddies down in Fotinovo suggesting that we took a trip out to Haskovo and if I was interested to drop them a message.  I thought they might have already gone since the message was at just before eight this morning and it was now ten thirty and said that it was a super idea but if they'd left without me, thanks for thinking about me.  They hadn't, they were still at the coffee and toast stage so they said they would be about an hour, which they were.  I washed, dressed for a day out in super thin clothing, it was going to be a scorcher.  We sat in the garden and had coffee and then off down the back lane heading for Kardjali and then Haskovo to the garden centre, a new store that had opened and the big hardware shop.

In the hardware shop I was very tempted with a dip pool but resisted the temptation but I'll check out the purchase and delivery charges on the internet.  At the market garden I was pleased to see that my lady was still working there and what a difference she's made in the place.  It looks so much tidier but she did say that she was sorry that there weren't more bedding plants saying that they were not getting deliveries from Holland because of the virus.  I bought one Salix which is covered in pink tips and picked up two others that needed love and attention and those came for free.  My friends bought quite a few and the car was looking more like Kew Gardens.  Into the new shop and that's where we found the planters and good value for the two.  Into Haskovo centre, we were all feeling hungry and found a Pizzeria restaurant....bliss...and we settled on one salad and I shared a giant four cheese pizza...delicious.  I offered to pay a donation to the bill which was refused so I said I would buy the ice-creams and as we left the restaurant there was an ice-cream stand so we each ordered from the selection, the cartons were weighed and it came to just over seven leva....nothing...one would have been that price in the UK.

Back to Lidl in Kardjali, a few items of shopping and then home through Djebel.  We reckoned that the extra weight from the shopping had reduced the clearance between the car and the gravel on the lane so it was best to take the road.  Shopping unpacked, one more coffee on the terrace and off they went.  What a fab day and so out of the blue.  We are lucky that our lock-down is more or less over, most people are wearing masks when out and they worst place was in Lidl...we timed it wrongly.  No supper for me, too much pizza...tomorrow I have plants to put in and decisions to be made as to where the planters are going to live.  LN....Nice to have been out and about feeling like a tourist....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 19, 2020, 5:29pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 19th May

I went to bed early but woke up at two, it was a very warm night and the nest was on fire or so it seemed.  I played on the Kindle for an hour putting my leg out of bed to act as a thermostat and went off until seven twenty so caught it back again.  Today, the nests,  both upstairs and downstairs have been destroyed, cotton sheets and duvet covers are on both with lighter weight quilts.  What's the betting that the weather's going to change....

Washed and dressed for gardening but not a lot of that happened.  Having stripped the beds, the washing machine was put to good use but I decided against drying them outside, I got bitten quite badly the last time.  The pesky things are minute so you can't see them with the naked eye so better that you take precautions against them....they were dried over the banister in the stairwell.  I had breakfast, two poached eggs with ham on toast followed by one more toast with apricot jam....and it has stayed with me most of the day.  I didn't think that I would want supper but I did.

Today's task was to put up the rolling clothes rail that I'd bought the other day from Kardjali and managed it first time...very simple to do.  I moved out one of the bench type tables into the porch and moved the winter wood starter container and the other wood container into the little house.  The table slid underneath the existing shelving and a lower shelf for storing shoes.  The ash container is now not necessary so I emptied it and that's in the little house as well.  Spring is here.

I watered the pots , moved one or two things in the garden and noticed that the two willow trees that I have in the garden are putting on pink tips like the one that I bought from the market garden yesterday...and that's a surprise.  Not a lot of energy floating around today but I seem to have achieved a lot of 'bitsa' stuff....bits of this and bits of that but sometimes days are like that.  I had a phone call from the UK and we put the world to rights...why should Piers Morgan have the monopoly.

I put supper in while I was finishing off and it was ready by seven.  A whole rack of ribs and I decamped to the computer on the landing with ribs, mayo, tomato ketchup, kitchen roll, knife and form and spoon for the mayo.  I tried to find baby wipes but they'd all dried out but I was close enough to the bathroom to make a reasonable job of cleaning up.  Down with the residue and back upstairs with ice-cream...is there no end to this opulence!!  More of the same tomorrow but a little more activity on the garden.  LN....Chilled day....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 20, 2020, 3:48pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 20th May

First night in the cotton sheets and it seemed to work but I went to bed so early that I was awake at five thirty...Soda Crush felt pity for me and delivered the solution to a puzzle that's kept me busy for a day or so, the next two were easy, I ate all the chocolates and found the bears but then it presented me with another super hard one.  I haven't bothered with it all day, I've just been too busy.

Ham and cheese omelette for breakfast and at eight it was all ship shape and Bristol fashion, I settled with a Sudoku and set off with the Beast to take it for a check-up and to get it spruced up.  It's not really been out since Christmas but tomorrow I'm off to get two bales of potting compost and it will be easier in the biggie.  I stopped off in Djebel to buy a mask, I'd forgotten to pick mine up when I left the house and since you're not supposed to go into a chemist without one decided to go to my little chemist instead and at the same time picked up some more insect bite gel...they're getting active.  I was down to fifteen leva when I left the chemist so headed to the cashpoint leaving the car in the high street but as I walked towards the bank I was struggling to remember the sequence on the keypad.  I just don't remember numbers very well.  Three attempts and the messages were in Bulgarian so I hadn't got a clue so I cancelled the transaction, went back to the Beast and moved on to the next cash point having referred to my memory jogger and cash was delivered.  

I moved down to the garage and was asked why I hadn't been down the the Nipper to change from winter to summer tyres.  It was only then that I remembered about it...the virus has upset a whole lot of things.  Oil was checked, tyre pressures OK and then three of them set about giving it a shampoo and polish but only on the outside.  The muck inside is mine all mine.  I didn't pay up, I arranged to take the Nipper in for tyre change and another spruce up and again it was a quiet afternoon so the three of them worked on it.  The bill came to eighty leva but that included repair to the rims for my summer tyres, I'd knacked them going down the back lane and they'd had to be taken to Kardjali where apparently the guy looked very disapprovingly at the damage. I said he would have said that it was unfortunately due to an aged English person taking the lane faster than she should.

I heard on the radio driving back that we are supposed to have hailstones tomorrow, the temperature today has reached thirty and tomorrow it's going down to fifteen with showers.  I suppose I should have come back and sorted the grass out but didn't.  Instead I've put chicken wings and veg to roast in the oven and it's smelling as if it will soon be ready.  No bee-eaters again, maybe the patrolling cats have put them off.  LN....Another day out tomorrow....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 21, 2020, 5:41pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 21st May

Best night's sleep for ages according to my Fitbit...eight-one percent.  I think that's best ever.  It was early when I went to bed so early to rise and at five thirty I really didn't believe what showed up on the screen when I synced it with the tablet.  I'm sure it lies to me!!  I didn't have to leave until ten and I had lots to do and lots of time to fill.  I did play silly games for an hour or so, decided to have a shower and wash my hair and then it was out to the garden to dig up some gifts to take with me.  Lily of the Valley, Michaelmas Daisies, more Iris, tobacco plants and a baby shrub all freshly dug and watered well.  There really was no need, the rain arrived at around two today, with the wind and the thunder and lightening.  I loaded the plants into the Beast and off I set at around ten and it was a pleasure to be driving the biggie again on a journey.

I did the circular tour of the garden, offered coffee and chose water instead and we set off for Kirkovo.  Today's journey was to pick up potting compost, I'm tired of buying rubbish and my soil is so poor that I need to put something back.  Lovely journey down to the town. it's like driving through the bowl of a volcano and lots of sandstone shapes and hillocks.  The main river sweeps through the valley and where was my camera?  It was in my bag but I was driving.  We stopped off first at the market and I bought more petunias, snapdragons. sun daisies, red peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers so I have work to do tomorrow.  The market was very quiet with only fruit and veg stalls there and I also bought potatoes and cherries that I left half with my host and hostess when I set off for home.  On to the agricultural merchants and I got two huge bags of potting compost and the man lifted them into the back of the Beast...and they're still there...they are heavy and not a job to be tackled when it's persisting down with rain.  We went back to the house and lunch arrived and we sat chewing the fat for the afternoon and were all convinced that we'd done the right thing by moving here...it isn't the England that we loved and adored.

Home for three thirty and pulled up outside since the cows were coming up the street and waited for them to go by before I opened the gate..the last thing I wanted was to have to chase cows out and by this time it was bucketing down.  I maneuvered the Beast into the garage, went back to close the gate and a car pulled up asking me direction for somebody's house and I said that I didn't know my neighbours and told him that I was English.  He then tried to explain in English who he was looking for and I apologised but said I was leaving, I was wet, he was in the dry.  I left and he left so I unloaded the purchases and went in and lit a fire and very welcome it was too and suddenly my neighbour was there delivering a pot of home made yogurt and some eggs so I gave her some of the cherries as a thank you.  Cold chicken wings for supper followed by fresh cherries for me and for six leva...they've gone a long way between lots of people and I still have some left for tomorrow.  

Gardening tomorrow if the weather clears up a little but it will be good to get them in, better that they're water in not dried out in the temperatures we had earlier in the week.  LN......Good day...a lot achieved....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 22, 2020, 5:45pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 22nd May

Another funny night.  I woke up at two, a trip to the little room and tried to get back off to sleep and nothing doing so I played Soda Crush for an hour or so.  It was five thirty when I came to for the second time so not much of a night's sleep for me.  It left me a little jaded for the rest of the day and I felt I was having to push myself and I did.  Toasted ham and cheese sandwich for breakfast and then it was 'let the day begin'.

It started in the kitchen when I cleaned three roasting tins that had been used for wings and things and I'd been a bit lazy so last night put them with washing up liquid, Cif and hot water to soak overnight and I use a washing up bowl so that I don't get grease in the sink drain.  That done I emptied the dirty water over the wall and was coming back into the house when my painter was walking the village delivering the lunches to those less fortunate in the village.  He asked how I was and I said fine and remembered that I had two two hundred and fifty litre bales of potting compost in the back of the Beast and he could help with that.  I said to come back after he'd finished his delivery, it wasn't urgent and we agreed that would be OK.  I finished the kitchen and then thought about the bales and made a start on it.  I moved the Beast forward so that I could open the back door making it more or less level with the door to the wood store.  The calculation is fifty litres of potting compost weighs approximately twenty two kilograms and fortunately I didn't make the calculation before I attempted moving it to the wood store.

I pulled the first bale forward sliding it against the one underneath and it fell to the garage floor and I managed to avoid the exhaust and the ball hitch.  I dragged it towards the door and couldn't lift it over the door sill so used my garden spade to raise it over the sill and edged it forward on the spade sitting on the handle to keep it raised against the weight of the bale, slow but effective.  I dragged it clear of the door and it was in...one down and one to go and now that the technique was tested and successful, the second one was easier and stored on its small end so easy to use.  I phoned my painter telling him not to rush back because I didn't need him any more but he eventually turned up, saying that he was sorry he got held up by an old lady, a stray dog and some chickens....he does find them.

I checked out what I'd bought yesterday and decided that it was time to sort out the veg garden.  I picked the overwintered broad beans, dug up the ones that needed digging up and left only two standing with two giant poppy plants, dug over the next beds, constructed the support for the tomatoes and then planted up six tomato plants, two cucumber plants and moved on to the next bed.  I removed the winter protector, dug over that bed and put in the peppers, moved on to the next and Haciber was in the garden delivering pancakes to celebrate the end of byram.  She looked at the plants on the table so I told her to pick one which she did, I picked a lemon, took the pancakes and lemon into the kitchen, warmed them up again and had them with sugar and lemon...all three of them and felt stuffed.  I forced myself out again and sorted out two other beds planting beetroot, parsnip and celeriac.  Tools away, I headed in at four, I'd had enough and promptly settled down on the sofa, remembered that the flower pots were sitting out in the sun so went out again, put them into a deep plastic tray and gave them a good water until tomorrow, now that I have my compost I can get them sorted.

Back to the sofa and I fell asleep and didn't wake up until just after seven, catching up on the lack of sleep overnight and restoring myself from the efforts of the day.  I woke up cold and immediately set about lighting the fire, not really necessary but comforting, no need for supper, the pancakes are sitting heavily on my digestion and at eight thirty, it will soon be time for bed.  What a day...more gardening tomorrow and then the grass needs cutting and more strimming to be done...never ending, sun, rain is good for the garden but not for me.  LN.....And now relax....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 23, 2020, 5:40pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 23rd May

So I woke up this morning at five thirty, everything seemed to be moving pretty rapidly, I was washed, dressed for the garden, the bread was not the best so I thought I'd wait and take bread from the van.  I haven't done this for several weeks.  I was pleased to see that he was wearing a mask and we did maintain distance.  Before I went for the bread I set about the vegetable garden, lifted the tulips and dug over the rest of the beds ready for the seeds.  I'd done all of this before I breakfasted on poached egg on toast.  After breakfast I planted out some cabbage thingies that were growing form the seeds that I'd put out for the birds for winter.  I don't like greens but the village can have them.  I was putting off cutting the grass, eventually I decided to take the challenge and I succeeded.  It was still damp underneath I should have probably left it but with the rain heading our way next week and a cloudy day tomorrow, I took the opportunity.

I came in for a break around twelve and was surprised by one of the children from the village.  I'd forgotten it was the day that the children collect sweets from the villagers and fortunately I had the bag of chocolate caramels so opened it and handed them over.  I asked her why she was the only one and she said that she didn't know but they came round later.  Haciber also paid me a visit and brought the other type of pancake, I had three of the frothy ones and managed two with jam on for lunch.  Back to it again and it took me until four this afternoon to finish it.  I came in and checked my Fitbit and I've done twenty three thousand plus steps today and decided to update the results on the tablet since I hadn't Blue-toothed it since Thursday and that's when the fun began.  The tablet just couldn't see it and since I'm in competition with my daughter, I wanted this recording.  She beats me most weeks and this week I might just stand a chance.  Managed it in the end, tools away and all locked up and came up to watch a little tv on the computer and that's when I spotted the bee-eaters and was surprised by a woodpecker on my tree.

Tuna for supper tonight, the boiler is on for a bath, Saturday nights are not what they used to be on the tv so it will be another early night for me.  Strimming tomorrow and then I'm going to be filling the pots with the new compost and planting out the oleander and repotting the fuschias..the last compost that I bought was rubbish and I have got two huge bags of it to use up.  The new pots will be filled with petunias and so will the snapdragons.  I need to get them settled in before the weather changes.  LN....Another good day.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 24, 2020, 4:56pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 24th May

Early start again but I've kept going all day so should sleep OK...fingers crossed.  Black tea again and back to bed with the Soda Crush and sure enough, the game gave up and I moved on to the next and then the next....washed, dressed and put on the same clothes from yesterday, it was a cold start to the day.  I was undecided what to have for breakfast but I settled on bacon and egg and as I'd had such an early start that I had washed up and it was still only eight thirty and the day was in front of me.

I opened up one of the bales of potting compost and was really impressed with it.  I started on the oleander that I'd grown from seed and were now desperately in need of a homes of their own and now they have.  They're in fairly big pots and are now sitting on the terrace, watered in and fingers crossed, they should settle in nicely and look very healthy.  The new concrete containers are completed with sun daisies and petunias and the rest of the re-potting can happen to morrow weather permitting.  I moved on to the grave garden which was definitely in need of love and attention and it got it today.  There was a lot of clover that had grown through the shrubs along with grass that I'd not really seen before but living next to a field has advantages in that it's very quiet but when the wind blows, I do get all sorts over the wall.  Battling with the weeds, planting up the cleared patches and removing the fir tree that was hanging on took me through to four thirty and I came in for a coffee and a small packet of biscuits.  I didn't go out again until five thirty and really to tidy things away, I'd done enough for today and as I went out it started to rain, the forecasters were right, they said we would have showers today, but it was short and sweet and now it's turned into a very settled evening.  

So if it does rain tomorrow I'm going in to Kardjali to deposit my company documentation in the appropriate box at the Statistics Office.  If it's fine I'll carry on with the gardening now that I'm in the mood for weeding and finishing off what I started a few weeks ago.  I'm really pleased with the garden...it's looking good.  LN.....Now to find something for supper.....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 25, 2020, 4:10pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 25th May

Early morning again but I played games for a while and then got up to watch the sun come up and put the washing away.  I went out on my bedroom balcony and there were cuckoos all over the show this morning. One almost dived at me on the balcony, we didn't expect each other and then it took off for the electricity line near to the pylon and joined two mates.  It was a pretty cool start to the day, the clouds lit up with the sunrise but the sun wasn't out for long and that's been the story of today.  Hot at times and then a cold wind for the rest of it and tonight there's a chill about me that a bath will sort out later.  

Beans on toast for breakfast, they were left over from last night's supper.  I decided not to go into Kardjali, the garden between the steps to the garden and the terrace had a bad attack of weeds...and since rain has been predicted for the next few days,it had to be done.  It was a slow process, there were lots of baby poppies but they're OK living in the rough ground but I didn't want them there. Once it was cleared, I dug up about fifteen zinnias from the fire pit bed  and planted them up, tried to water them but the spray attachment on the end of the hose had lost it's clip so was spraying everywhere except where I wanted it.  It's on the list when I head to the hardware store.  I also cut the geraniums back and took about ten cuttings and planted them up.  I should have done it sooner, last year's wood doesn't produce very good blooms.  More old pots emptied and the tulip bulbs put in the little house to dry off, new compost added and delphinium seeds planted.  I had a visit from two of the village ladies and they were in the gate before I new it and on to the terrace.  One of them wanted one of my roses from the front gate, they were going over so I cut her a spray from the pink rose near the other gate and they went away happy.

I tidied up as the weather was deteriorating, it had clouded over, it was cold and now it's started to rain.  This is supposed to be lingering for a few day so I might very well go to Kardjali tomorrow.  LN....Decisions, decisions....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 26, 2020, 4:39pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 26th May

Silly night last night...I went to bed at eleven thirty, settled down to sleep and on with the light at twelve and Soda Crush until two.  According to the Fitbit I only had seven percent deep sleep...not enough but I managed the day without having an afternoon nap.  I forgot to mention that I woke just before seven so not much sleep at all.  I looked out at the terrace and there was compost all around the new concrete pot that I planted up yesterday....blasted cats.  Apparently the secret is not to leave too much soil exposed and they leave it alone.  That was going to be the first job, clean up and then plant some more in the container.

There was half a packet of bacon that needed doing something with so I did and popped an egg in the pan and half a slice of bread and that was breakfast.  I followed it with a slice of toast with apricot jam...I was planning a day of strimming which didn't happen.  Washed, dressed for the garden and got out the Sudoku book and knocked off a few puzzles and didn't get out to the garden until eleven.  It was pretty cloudy out there and cold so I sorted out the container first, repotted the fuchsia cutting that I'd brought from England into the new compost.  The one that I'd used was retaining too much water and it was suffering so maybe it will do better.  I potted up several new shrubs that I'd got from the market garden, emptied the tulip bulbs from others, planted up more tobacco babies and upset a giant ants nest in the process and removed the couch grass from the bed.  The weather deteriorated and got really cold, thunder rattled around and it eventually started to rain so I packed up and came in around two.  I made a cup of coffee and opened a small packet of biscuits and demolished them dipping them in the coffee and worked up the energy to get in to town for a new tap for the water barrel, a spray head for the garden hose and some more ant powder.  I also remembered a couple of drill bits...the bench is still on the list of 'to-do's'.

I drove into town, bought the items I'd gone in for, popped into the car shop and sat with my student's mum for about an hour for a town update.  I related the story of getting the bags of potting compost from the Beast into workshop and was told to be careful and I promised I would in future with a smile on my face.  My student was home from university because of the virus and we tapped feet, the new handshake.  His little brother came in and was trying to get money from his mum for a Donner kebab but it wasn't happening.  His lip dropped and we laughed..cruel aren't we.  Down to the little supermarket for water, biscuits, a tin of tuna and a packet of ham and coming out of the shop I met up with Emula, one of the lads from the village that I hadn't seen for some time, we chatted for a time about the old Cleo of all things and he asked if it was for sale and too late, it's been de-registered and is only suitable for scrap.

Home James, I fitted the tap to the outside water barrel, not sure that the spray will fit the hose but it was too cold outside to play around with it, chicken and veg in the oven and it should be ready soon.  Rain clouds are coming in again and it looks like we've got this for a while...come on it's May and nearly June.  LN....Morre of the same tomorrow or strimming if the mood takes me....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 27, 2020, 3:59pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 27th May

Reasonable night's sleep but it was an early start. I made a guess at six thirty but it was five thirty....to early and too late to try again.  I made tea and took it back to bed and settled in to Soda Crush until I ran out of lives and then moved on to Judge Rinder on Transponder.  I made more tea, washed and dressed and watched the rain come down.  I toyed with the idea of going in to Kardjali but the cold, wet weather put me off.  I made toast and jam for breakfast, threw the old bread over the wall for the animals and a few slices on the lawn for the sparrows.

There's not been a lot of activity today.  I did managed to complete the form for the Statistics Department, in Bulgarian and that's now awaiting delivery to the office.  Chances are that there's still the unattended desk and the form just needs posting in the box so because of the weather...it can wait for another day or so.  Around lunchtime it really threw it down, very heavy rain, trees bending in the wind and lots of new branches ending up on the grass.  I suppose it's good for the seeds I've planted as long as the ants haven't secreted them away already, but the rain needs to be followed by sun to encourage them.

It's been a tele day.  I've just lit the fire, had cold chicken which was supposed to be transformed into a curry for supper which never materialised.  It was just too much like hard work.  I'm following it with the top of a packet of chocolate biscuits which I'm hoping remains that I'm just eating the top few.  A very bedraggled cuckoo settled on the walnut, a few 'cucks' and not many 'oos' and the bee-eaters must be having a hard time of it...not many bees about.  LN...Time to put the biscuits back down stairs....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 28, 2020, 3:08pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 28th May

So last night there was a change in the views over the hillside.  There was a complete rainbow between us and the next village and it was so dramatic.  I tried to take a video with my camera to catch it all but it seemed to be taking too long to work it out.  There's another button on the front of the camera and using the wheel on the top didn't seem to work but for some reason it didn't work so I took photos instead.  I was just to close too the whole thing to take a picture of all of it.  I'll get it sorted for next time.

I went to bed around midnight and put my head down around one and was awake again at six so not a lot of sleep last night.  The usual morning routine of tea, back to bed, the weather looked quite promising but it was lying to me....it was all downhill after that.  I found a packet of bacon in the freezer and used up the last four eggs on an omelette so that I could start on the new ones before they went out of date.  I've got this phobia about eggs and freshness.  I put a couple of cheese triangles on it and it went down well and it's done me through until now.  

Another inactive day....no chance of getting out there, it's very wet underfoot, too wet for the strimmer and definitely too wet for me.  I'm not doing well in this sort of weather, my step rate has gone down and I've got no inclination to push it up.  I went out and filled up the log basket, there is the possibility of another fire this evening and despite the fact that it is appearing to clear up with yet another rainbow, the temperature has not gone up greatly.  I did venture out into the garden to take a few photographs, the last one of the red hot pokers showed that they were just peaking through...and now...check them out.  One thing struck me that the flowers on the cultivated philadelphus has many more flowers but they are smaller than the wild ones but both smell divine.

So I move into the evening, I've not thought about supper yet but as I said, that omelette has not moved very far down the food chain.  As for the days...I've been ahead of myself all week, marked up yesterday as Thursday which now has been amended and thought today was Friday and couldn't understand this morning why my bank hadn't sent a text of monies going in to the account and I hadn't received an email that I normally get every week on a Friday.  I put it down to the virus....it's upset my state of mind I think, I'm fed up of the coverage, there's not the normal balance of life and there's no future plans made.  By now I've normally thought about going to the UK, arranging a holiday in Turkey, booked a cruise or been for the Saturday markets to Greece. One day, fingers crossed, it might sort itself out.  LN....Time to get that fire going...LN

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Elsa Peters
May 29, 2020, 5:34pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 29th May

Another rubbishy day weatherwise....rain, rain, go away.  To be fair, it wasn't too bad this morning but by lunchtime the clouds were coming over and by five thirty, there was one heck of a front that came over along with thunder and lightening...dramatic.

As for my morning, it was very leisurely and it took me until ten thirty to get dressed.  I fried the rest bacon from the fridge and had a couple of bacon sandwiches for breakfast and ate them watching them while I checked my emails on the computer.  I'd tried to get through to the provider on the Kindle and it couldn't find the server so that's why I moved to the biggie.  I was only spurred into action by a phone call from the post office to tell me that I had a 'cartichka' and that seemed very interesting.  I'm still waiting for cards for mother's day and my daughter said she'd sent something else for me and at twelve I set off for the post office before the lady went for her lunch.  I recognised the handwriting straightaway and it was from the friend that I sent the birthday flowers to, to say thank you.  She described how beautiful the flowers were so I'll be tempted to use the company again.

Back home and settled on the sofa with my Kindle and got stuck into a new book that so far I'd ignored.  I think my eyes were just heading south when my Fotinovo friend arrived with a pot of homemade strawberry jam so it was on with the kettle, updates all round and I said that I had thought of phoning him, I'd had a message from the Librarian's son, they hadn't managed to contact her and were beginning to get worried.  I'd thought of going over since she wasn't answering any of her phones and my friend suggested that we took off, straightaway and checked it out.  It's quite a way from me so I offered to drive over leaving his car at his house and we could carry on together but he insisted that he had nothing else to do, he would drive me back.  On the way he spotted a bird on the road that he'd seen on his way over and stopped to pick it up and put it on the verge.  It was a very dazed shrike so I just had to take a photo.  We parked up, both of the gates were padlocked but there was washing out and the dogs were about so I moved to the bottom gate and shouted for her to come out.  It took a time but out she came so I passed on the message from her son and daughter-in-law.  Duty done.

On to my friends house for coffee and a walk round the garden, he drove me home and we walked my garden and off he went with some good strong cuttings and another climber with very good roots that I'd pulled off my front wall.  We both took some good photos of the very black sky that had appeared and we've earmarked plants that he wants from my garden.  Off he went, I had fish finger sandwiches for supper, too lazy to do anything else.  I've just had a message from the Librarian's family thanking me, she's phoned.  LN....Fire going and now into the evening....LN

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Elsa Peters
May 30, 2020, 3:47pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 30th May

Six start this morning, tea, back to bed, Soda Crush, one good game and one that's dragged on and will be there for the next time that I open up the program. I could buy extra lives but it's not my way....patience is a virtue.  I put a load of washing in at just after seven and decided that it would be put to dry upstairs in my summer bedroom in the sun..for as long as it managed to stay.  

I washed up from last night, took a packet of bacon from the freezer and put half of it in the pan with an egg and that was breakfast sorted.  I was unsure what to do today, I'm going into Kardjali on Monday to put the form into the office and do a little shopping and unfortunately it was far too wet to get the strimmer out so gardening was out of the question.  I started to walk the garden to check on the clematis and passion flower and my attention was drawn to the bench with its two good legs and two that needed replacing.  I'd worked out that since I'd managed to get the drill working that it was going to be made easier but when I put the drill bit in and gave it a burst of electricity...it failed to work.  I check the power connections and they were all intact so back to the drawing board Cecil.  I cut the two new legs out and the cross piece, took out the old screws and was about to drill the new pieces to fit into the old holes and that's when I hit the brick wall.  It's all back together with nails and I'll do it properly at a later date.  It still needs a cross strut putting in to hold it all secure but it was at that point that I had to put my toys away, the weather had gone into the usual pattern,,,sunny morning, clouds come over, thunder and rain.  My gardening neighbour had popped her head over this morning to find out what I was doing and she gave me the weather report...'rain, after lunch' and she as right.

I came in at two, had the rest of the Camembert for lunch some Riveta and took it upstairs and fired up the computer.  Transponder TV was freezing and not delivering a good service but I managed to stay awake and watched 'Chicken Run'.  The fire is going, the washing has been moved to the bathroom and will finish drying overnight.  The chicken wings that I got from the freezer this morning are now in the fridge and I'll have them tomorrow...that cheese is lying heavily.  'Frozen' is on the Beeb tonight...have to watch my namesake.  LN....Bath, t.v. and an early night.....LN

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Elsa Peters
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Sunday 31st May

I didn't have that bath last night, I watched 'Frozen'. and really enjoyed it.  I'd watched it several years ago and forgotten all about it...and found out it was by Hans Christian Anderson....such a clever story teller.   So in bed by ten thirty and checking up on my Fitbit, it was a pretty restless night even though even though it seemed as if I'd had a good night.  I made bacon and egg for breakfast, washed dressed and my goodness it was cold.  It was twelve degrees outside and nineteen in by I resorted to my Bulgarian vest and it reminded me the childhood saying to 'Ne're cast a clout until May is out' and I'd cast it but retrieved it.  It was raining but only slightly but I wasn't interested in making a name for myself outside.  I settled on the sofa with the Kindle and an incredible tiredness came over me and it was eleven thirty when I came to for the second time.  

It was still a cold miserable outlook, it was starting to clear up and I decided I should really make an effort.  Princess fortunately delayed it, she phoned for a catch-up and I really appreciate that she does.  They are both furloughed, the company they work for is getting back into the flow and are expecting to restart soon.  She said that she's got the best suntan ever and I've suggested that they don't come over here, you would think that I'm the visitor.  My face and hands are brown from working in the garden nut the rest hasn't had any exposure and until the weather picks up, that how it's going to stay.

Eventually the sun came out and I joined it.  I tidied round the compost bin in the yard removing the weeds, planted up a lacy hydrangea under the grape vine and cut back the vine....it never really does any good and grapes really need lots of care.  I repotted the two bougainvilleas, cleared the weeds from round the pot plants and was out there until the rain and thunder drove me inside at six.  Chicken wings and vegetables went into the oven to roast while I sorted some of the shrub cuttings that I'd taken and put them into water to absorb all they can before they get dipped in the rooting compound and then in the soil.  I went out again and tipped the rest of the containers upside down so that they don't collect the rain...the last thing I want is mosquitoes breeding.  

Supper was very filling and I even left three of the chicken wings for tomorrow.  I fancied ice-cream but haven't any so it's on the list for tomorrow along with several other items.  I have to stop off at my student's mother's shop to pick up a letter that they've been holding on to but it's not the one that I was waiting for, two from Princess have gone missing. I think I shall be heading for my cheapy shop after I've delivered my document...I'm having withdrawal symptoms.  LN...Let the evening begin....LN  

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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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