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Elsa Peters
January 1, 2021, 6:46pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 1st January

So I stopped up last night to bring in the Bulgarian Ney Year but didn't managed to hang on to the UK turnover.  Lots of messages on FB with New Year greetings with the main theme...let's get back to normal.  In my humble opinion it's going to take some time....this second wave seems more virulent and more people going down with it especially in the UK.

Lovely morning, I woke up at seven thirty and there was a frost on the ground and the temperature was plus one.  The sun was just breaking though, misty clouds in the valley that eventually turned into freezing fog but that cleared and it's been good all day.  Better the day so better the deed....so I decided to remove the pipes from the wood burner and give them a good clean.  There wasn't much soot in them but I made sure that they were all locked in securely when I put them back together again and so far so good....not a hint of smoke except up and out of the chimney  I cleared away most of the mess and finished off with the hoover and carrying on with the conservatory so that it was tidy for visitors should any appear.  By this time the bugs were biting so I made bacon and egg for breakfast, tidies the kitchen, put a load of washing in.  Next on the list was to empty the tiles from the Nipper, put the seats back, load up the car with the bags that needed delivering and I set off for the first port of call.

My painter still wasn't at home, I knocked for a while, gave up so carried on to Guljan's house to see her parents .Benje the dog announced my arrival and mother came out and was surprised to see me.  I handed over the gift and then came the offers of coffee, baklava, banichka, tea and I settled for baklava but then the others were foisted upon me.....you can't refuse.  In typical Turkish fashion my bag to take home was already being assembled and I've enough food for the next week.  I also have a pot of her home-made yogurt.  We talked about not being able to go places and the effect of the virus in Germany in that her daughter hasn't been able to visit despite having three weeks without work.  I'd promised to go over to Germany this year but then the virus hit and as it happens I've not been anywhere and neither have they.  

I came home and lit the fire, put the washing on the airer and put a chicken in the oven for supper along with a jacket potato and noticed that I had a missed call from the UK from Angela so I called her back and we spent about forty minutes on catch-up.  She's a dear friend and we normally manage at least a few evenings over Christmas together when I'm in the UK but this year she settled for visits from the family.  We talked Netflix and I recommended a few series that I'd watched since she has access and Bridgeton was one of them.  Unfortunately I've got to the end of the series...shame...I want more.

By this time the chicken was cooked as as I fetched it out I put an apple in to back and that was my pudding but unfortunately no cream and I didn't fancy yogurt with it.  Washing up done, log on the fire, want to watch Torville and Dean with their Balero tonight on a glacial lake.  Pretty good at their ages that they're still at it...almost time to hang up their skates.  Might be at the garage tomorrow for my gas system check up...I'm waiting for the call from the garage.  LN.....Nothing else on the agenda so far......LN



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Elsa Peters
January 2, 2021, 5:19pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 2nd January

Funny old day, I woke up at five this morning, played a few games and at seven thirty I was starting my day for real.  I'd watched the sun come up, the temperature outside was minus two degrees and there had been a ground frost overnight and everything looked very picturesque.  Inside the house had maintained nineteen degrees so there was no need to light the fire once the sun came up.  I logged on to the big computer and was very aware that the little camera hadn't had the pictures cleared out of it for a while so that was one of my morning tasks.  I'd rather face it and clear the files that the camera warn me that there wasn't enough space to take the best shop of the century so now I'll be ready for it.  While the files were transferring, I used the new Sony to capture the morning.  

That done I got dressed and made bacon and egg sandwich for breakfast, washed up, tidied round and set the fire for later.  I waited for a phone call from the garage and when that came I had been given the time of two thirty to take the Nipper down.  That gave me a few hours before I needed to be anywhere so I settled down on the sofa watching Netflix and caught up on the missed sleep from last night.  I had a further call at one to say that the time had been changed to five and I thought it was odd since it would be getting dark but I really need for it to be looked at so I agreed.  The phone went again and it was my good friend from the UK returning a call that I'd made before the holiday so we had a catch-up with a promise that the next time I'm in UK I will made the journey to see her.  She made Bulgaria, I'm sure I can make Nottingham and I'd just put the phone down and it went again and it was the garage again, it's now been moved to tomorrow and no time has been given...at least it will be in the light.

I lit the fire since I really didn't have anywhere to go, settled down on the sofa again and watched a very peculiar musical film with a very odd story line.  I recognised some of the music and characters but had never seen it before.  I was feeling hungry so raided the fridge and came out with a plate of cold chicken and a bunch of grapes and it felt quite decadent.  Fortunately they were pip-less so easy to eat.  New 'The Voice' starting this evening so that's something to follow and I've yet to find a new series on Netflix that's going to keep me enthralled  occupied.  Seven fifteen my time so now into my evening.  LN...I'll hopefully have a call from the garage in the morning......LN



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Elsa Peters
January 3, 2021, 4:28pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 3rd January

Eight start this morning and I didn't linger in be bed just in case I had a phone call to ask me to present the Nipper at the garage...and I'm still waiting for the call.  I did call the garage around twelve to see if they had heard anything but the man that's doing the service is from Plovdiv was killing an animal last night and following normal procedures, he had a skin full last night and wasn't available for comment.  I settled for yogurt this morning, laid the fire and despite the rain I didn't bother lighting it and moved upstairs on to the computer and was surprised at around eleven but a bit of a commotion at my door and my friend from Fotinovo was making an entrance and said that there was a man in my garden who was just leaving.  I guessed it was my painter so made my way outside and it was, his present was in the conservatory so I called him back and handed it to him.  He asked why and I said that it was for the help that he gives me and is on call should I need anything, I normally don't but he is on the end of a phone.

So on when the kettle and the coffee was made.  We talked weather and how horrible it was today and how it had changed from the two frosty clear days that we'd just had.  What he did introduce me to was a series on You Tube that he had come across and it's a Chinese young lady that's gone back to traditional customs, looking after her grandmother and has become a wow on You Tube especially with the Chinese that are able to reminisce when they see what she gets up to following traditional methods.  More coffee and off he went, I'd lit the fire so stoked it up, put the rest of the chicken in the slow cooker for tonight's supper.  I added curry powder and the rice is about to go on.  

I played around with some tiny elephants that had been given me as a present last Christmas and I'd not done anything with them and so today I found out the piece of wood that I want to use as a base and tried them out.  I took a photograph to send to the person that had given them to me and she approves.  I'll be in the little house sanding the board off as soon as the weather warms up.

So tomorrow I shall be on standby for the garage again.  I've got my road taxes for the cars to sort tomorrow and fortunately I can do it on line.  I'm assured that we shall be having the frosty-sunshiny weather back again and bring it on.  LN...I have rice to cook.....LN



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Elsa Peters
January 4, 2021, 6:26pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 4th January

Seven thirty start and I was up and at it and ready for the early morning call to the garage....which never came.  I feel I've got to go there tomorrow to see if there is another garage in Kardjali or to get the plugs checked over to see that they are working correctly.  It's all weather dependent, if it's hissing down I'm going to be staying put.  It started off OK, rained briefly, dried up and kept an even temperature and now it's thundering and chucking it down.  If only it was snowing, that would be more wintery.

I settled for yogurt for breakfast again, trying to be a good girl and staying off the fatty stuff.  I didn't feel too good this morning but got better as the day wore on, not that I did very much.  I'd got enough wood in so that was a blessing and didn't light the fire until four this afternoon and it's ticking along nicely now.  I've been upstairs on the computer most of the day, I went back to chasing my ancestors and realised that I'd accepted a hint that had introduced people into my tree that I didn't want so they've been removed.  I think it's from my relative in New Zealand who has shot down the wrong path despite my advising him of the dates that that path hinged on.  I verified mine with probate records and those have taken me two more generations back. It's difficult sometimes...you just can't accept other peoples trees into yours.  

I did managed to road tax both cars over the internet today.  It was a bit of a performance, the website isn't intuitive and takes you back over a few different screens just to get to the same place.  There's also a 'I'm not a robot' with pictures that are not easy to follow and once you get into the payment screens you have to put in your own bank password and then wait for a telephone password which is all very well but the 'subscreens' aren't translated into English so you have to take it slowly.  Anyway I've done it, printed off and laminated the document to go into each vehicle.

I've just heard some strange noises outside and realised that it's probably my solar lights that are swinging in the 'breeze' or getting knocked around in the gale that's blowing.  I'm not into supper tonight, I had biscuits and cheese about an hour ago so will manage until the morning and it will probably be a cooked breakfast....it's kind of comforting.  The thunder's getting louder and the flashes nearer so it's time I logged off.  LN....Where's my winter?.....LN
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Elsa Peters
January 5, 2021, 6:04pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 5th January

So awake at six this morning and snuggled down for another hour...there was nothing to get up for at that time in the morning.  I didn't managed to go off to sleep though so at seven thirty I made it out of bed, went upstairs, got washed and dressed and prepared to face the day.  I was still hoping for that elusive call from the garage....and I'm still waiting.  I did get a call from the post office though, I had letters waiting for me and she would be at the post office until one thirty.  I did the usual things like throwing food over the wall for the cats and my almost adopted black one was first in line.  I stood watching it over the wall as it tentatively walked towards the chicken bones and crunched on some, looked up at me and then head down again.  I left the cat to it and walked back to the house and while I was out there decided to fill-up the log carrier, empty the ashes and set the fire for later.  Perfection, thy name is Peters.

Breakfast next, scrambled eggs on toast and mince meat out of the freezer with the intention of creating spaghetti bolognaise for supper but that plan bit the dust.  It's now in the fridge for tomorrow and supper was a few ginger biscuits with cream cheese....not particularly healthy but very tasty.  The biscuits from Kaufland reminded me of the Swedish pepperkocker biscuits that I used to bring back for Christmas when I was working over there.  I only managed about five of them and now pegs seal the bag and the cheese is back in the fridge.  I drove to the post office and was amazed how many bored looking cows were on the road blocking the way.  I really slows the traffic what little there is of it and it's quite fun when another car is coming the opposite way and the skill is to get through them first.

This afternoon I was on the computer and decided to look what compact discs I had in the drawer and found some I haven't played for ages.  I got through Bocelli, Sting and Elaine Page and I really must sort out the Apple iPod and get the original copy of the discs on to my main machine,  Syncing it won't do it....it will delete the files from the iPod.  Help has been requested and I have the instructions but I need someone to keep on the straight and narrow and not made any errors.  I phoned Princess to see if she was still working at the junior school and she said that she was still.  They hadn't many pupils in and the teacher was working with the class and online with some of the others.  I also phoned another old friend and had a post Christmas catch-up wishing her a Happy New Year.  Our friendship goes back almost sixty years,   Garage in the morning to see if there are any others that can get the work done on the Nipper.  LN.....I hate the way you get let down at times,,,,LN



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Elsa Peters
January 6, 2021, 6:08pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 6th January

So my decorations came down yesterday except for the twinkly lights that are still up in the conservatory on the timer and the lights between the lounge and the stairwell that I put on when I feel like getting cheered up.  Christmas is over, it hasn't felt like much of one but I feel strangely calm about the whole thing.  The weather has picked up for the last two days despite the fact that it's cold but the house has maintained it's normal eighteen to twenty one despite what's happening outside.

Awake at six thirty, chemical wash, the water is still off and I must find out where the problem is by asking the neighbours.  I'm hoping it's general and not just me.  I made toast for breakfast with Marmite and while reorganising the top cupboard I came across an old OXO tin that I'd brought from the UK so cleaned it up and will use it for something else.  I made the bolognaise sauce ready for tonight and had two portions extra that went into the freezer.  I phoned the garage and his wife said they would ask the Plovdiv man and phone me back which she did.  Friday was arranged but no time given but I was advised to go down the garage to see if the problem was a relay switch.  I got my backside into gear, wnet down the garage and the brother tried another relay from another connector and hey presto...it worked.  They had one in stock at the shop and down it came, it was fitted and all done and dusted for twenty five lev.  I decided to carry on to Kardjali to get a few items and to see if coffee was on offer so first stop was Kaufland.  I did a browse of the hardware section and saw that they had on off three step stepladders with the holding rail and I decided to buy one for safety.  I suddenly remembered that my friends in Fotinovo had talked about them so I phone and asked if they wanted a set and they did.  I picked up a few more bargains, back in the Nipper and on to Lidl and bought more water to make up for the lack of it from the taps.  Coming out of Lidl I phoned and offered to deliver the stops, it waa a nice day for a drive.  Lunch was on offer and I stayed until five and we covered lots of topics.

I drove home, unpacked the car, lit the fire, past on to get supper underway, chicken legs from Kaufland into freezer and calved up a lump of pork and got four portions out of it and that's int he freezer too.  Dupper was ready by six thirty and I moved upstairs with my dish, water bottle and put Transponder on to watch Tipping Point or at least  the end of it.  I can't wash up since I have to water and tomorrow i'll  have to take a trip to the spring and fill up some large plastic bottles.  I'll ask the other ladies in the village, they might be in a similar position.  Nothing on the agenda for tomorrow so far....might find something to do out of the norm.  LN....Only a mercy water run tomorrow.....LN
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Elsa Peters
January 7, 2021, 3:52pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 7th January

So I woke up this morning on the sofa at two fifteen and the Czar and family were just being shot....which means that I've got to view the last couple of episodes again.  I know Rasputin was killed but I don't know how.  It's been a strange series.  I was in St. Petersburg and visited the main places, Rasputin was mentioned but I never appreciated the hold that he had over the royal family until now.  I also didn't know that he was such a randy individual....if it moved he's have a go for it.

So switched everything off and went to bed and slept through until seven thirty and everything in the garden was lovely.  The water was still off so I put more bleach down it and bottled water from the spring and went upstairs and on to the computer.  At ten there was a loud knock on the door, I was part dressed and washed so grabbed a sweater and headed down and it was  Gouldjan's father and he'd been sent round for some large plastic water bottles.  I'd mentioned to his wife that I had lots of them and that they were welcome to them, they have cows and needed them for storage but with the water being off they obviously wanted more.  We made out way into the little house and the bottles are all strung up on a bungee cord so I took about ten off and he went out with them to his car.  He wished me good health and that I live for another fifty years which I hoped was an exaggeration and told him that I'd be happy with what I got.  So at this point I moved a filled bottle from little house to the conservatory to take up to the bathroom.  Next job was to sort some bottles out for me and put a few extra into the Nipper, locked up and headed down to Zelinger's house to see if she wanted any from the spring.  She was so pleased to see me, immediately found me three bottles out and Beyser was also there and she wanted some too so my spare bottles were coming in handy already.  Emula's mother saw me pull up and wanted another bottle filling and my little old lady was making her way to get an empty bottle when I told her not to, I had spares.  Off I set down the lane and came across the reason why we didn't have water.  There was a digger, about six men and a couple of vans and two men were actually digging.  Fortunately I turn off just before the activity centre and followed a car down to the spring.  I know the men by sight, they started filling up their bottles while I waited and one of them told me that he had built the surrounds of the spring and maintained the outside of it.  Off they went and I set about filling my eleven bottles, moving the Nipper nearer so I didn't have so far to carry the filled ones...they're quite heavy.

Job done and I drove back to the village and the ladies were sitting on the bench waiting for me.  I unloaded two and carried them down to Zelinger's house, Emula's mother took hers and I carried the little old lady's bottle to the door.  Back in the Nipper and drove to Beyser's house and carried hers to the door, she insisted that I wait and gave me some Nescafe instant packet coffee as a thank you,  Back home and mine were unloaded into the little house and locked up, loaded the log carrier so that I have ample for tonight and took up my position on the sofa with a book.  About an hour later the water started to flow into the tanks but there was so much air in the pipes that I ended up checking that everything was OK.  I must remember not to do any washing for the next few days....I bet there's lots of sandy water in the pipes too.  I suppose that you don't really have this problem in the UK and are warned about it if the water's going off.  That's why I always keep bottled water in...you never know.

So brownie points earned from the village today....my washing up is still waiting to be done so that's my next job before I make supper.  LN....Restful but useful day.....LN



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Elsa Peters
January 8, 2021, 6:03pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 8th January

So I tried last night to watch the Channel 4 programme about Egypt and it was touch and go all the way and eventually I gave up and went to bed and then couldn't get to sleep.  I turned to the Kindle and played games for an hour or so and them managed to get my head down successfully until seven thirty this morning,  I was slow off the mark and still in bed at nine thirty until I managed to lock up the Kindle and gave up in disdain.  I eventually managed to get it to reboot, shut it up and it's been in rest and recuperation for the rest of the day.

Bacon sandwich again and it was amazing how much fat came out of it.  I drained it well and removed the fat from the pan into a metal dish and wiped it round ready for tomorrow.  I've still got three slices of bacon that will be eaten tomorrow. Didn't do a lot, washed up from yesterday and the day before now that the water is on and gave the kitchen a good going over.  I'd done the washing last night and put it on the airer but it still needed longer to dry and I'll give it another day before I put it away.  I even had a bath last night so really made use of the facilities.  Picked up my phone and noticed a mussed call which is nothing unusual and noticed that it was from the post office lady so I phoned her back and she was going to be there until half two so I set off at one thirty.  I thought about taking the Beast for a run so went to start it up and it the battery was flat as a pancake so it need to go on charge but tomorrow is another day.  There was a huge queue at the post office so I jumped it, wearing my mask of course and explained that I only had to pick up some letters.  It was pension day so I asked her if she had any for me and she seriously replied that there was none for today.  She'd obviously studied the contents by feeling the envelopes and said she thought one of the brown envelopes was from the bank and there was a card in it,,,,wrong,,,,it was my new Union Jack EHIC that I'd ordered.  One more from the pensions people about my winter fuel payment and two cards, one thank you and one Christmas from another old friend with a suggestion that we meet up if I get to the UK any time in the next few years...just before we both cop it.

Ancestry this afternoon......I'd done some research for a friend in the UK and mentioned that more Scottish records had been released so have tried to take it further back that eighteen twenty in the Gorbals.  I was only working from odd notes that and didn't have my original workings out and this afternoon make sense of it all and tomorrow I can do some real work on it.  

It's been cloudy all day except for one brief interlude and now the temperature is dropping,  When it's cold and damp it's tempting to keep the fire going all day but I managed to give last out until five and it's going strong now.  Too dull to take photos and nothing much of interest in the garden...even the cats stayed away.  All locked up for the night, big log on which should see me through until bedtime and tuna and potato salad made and eaten and it still only eight o'clock.  LN....Time to relax....LN
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January 9, 2021, 3:44pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 9th January

So last night I was working on the ancestry chart for a friend and at eleven decided that I'd had enough but wasn't ready for sleep so I found an interesting one on Netflix to get stuck into.  It was entitled 'Unorthodox', had German subtitles in places and it was about a Jewish girls battle against orthodoxy and finding her own life in the world.  Very compelling but at one thirty I reckoned I'd like to save some of it for later so switched off and went to bed.

Woke at seven thirty, made coffee and straight way went back to Netflix and by nine thirty I'd finished it and was positively drawn in to the conclusion.  If you get a chance to watch it do so....and outlines the belonging to a religion or cult through as a generational thing not out of choice....very powerful and moving.  So off with the television, breakfast and the rest of the bacon went, washed and dressed and went up to the landing and watched a very secretive jay finding something in the grass to eat and then go to the mulberry to eat it before going down to find more.  It spent quite some time on its pursuit and despite how timid it was I managed a few shots before it went off to find new pastures.  Back to the kitchen and realised that the oranges weren't going to turn into marmalade so time I got a wiggle on.  I put aside four oranges and two lemons and followed the new 'fast recipe' that I'd found on the web and thought I'd give it a go.  I washed the fruit well, used the juicer to make sure that all the pips were removed and sliced up the peel and put them in the blender along with the juice.  I added a little water so that the blender wasn't struggling too much, put it all in a big saucepan and added one kilo of sugar.  I brought it to the boil and left it for twenty minutes to turn 'gloopy', sterilised a couple of jars and found new lids and poured the jam into the jars.  It appears to have worked, it's gone cold and fairly solid and this one needs to be kept in the fridge so that's where it is.  Washing up complete and while I was at it I decided that barbecued pork bubble away in the slow cooker while I  took up a position on the sofa.

My calm was disturbed by a phone call from the UK, I was on the phone for about an hour and then the line went dead.  I thought I was phoning back but instead phoned Princess, she phoned back and the next minute Beyser was at the door so I agreed to phone Princess back.  Beyser had brought round a present for me as a thank you for the Christmas presents and my getting the water the other day and I have new PJ's....red and white.  I opened the 'After Eight' so that she could take some home with her and now I have an opened box,,,they will have to go.  So I phone Princess back and we agreed that the red and white PJ's will become Christmas jamas and go very nicely with the sprout socks....nothing like forward planning.

It's been a good day today, the fire's going well and there's a huge log on it and it should last a while.  Supper is ready, 'The Voice' on tele tonight and the snooker starts tomorrow.  LN.....Lockdown just got better.....LN



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Elsa Peters
January 10, 2021, 4:01pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 10th January

So last night I watched some of what I'd scheduled, slept through other things but on the whole went to bed relaxed and straight off to sleep again.  I did have my first awakening at six but then back to sleep and it was eight thirty when my day began for real.  It was raining again and has been throwing it down all day, dull miserable, cold and I haven't bothered to get out of my PJ's and only put a thick sweater on to stave off the cold. I made boiled eggs for breakfast and very tasty they were.  Lidl large ones, very yellow so I suppose the chickens did see some sunlight.  Kitchen tidied and I went up to the computer to check emails and FB and found nothing to interest me so I carried on with the investigations I've been doing on ancestry and have moved on quite nicely and am now back to seventeen ninety six in new territory.  Only got one stumbling block on a wife but that's the icing...I'm following the male line to maintain the name and trace it back.

I've worked on that all day and lit the fire at two and have been topping up the caffeine levels regularly and I've just remembered that my last effort is in the microwave.... retrieved.  The only photo today was of the ginger cat and even that looked wet and bedraggled sitting on the wall under the walnut and when the wind whipped up it changed position hiding behind a bush.  Even the locals don't like it.  If the temperature would drop we would have loads of snow and then I would be happy.  This damp, drab, miserable weather does nothing for my demeanour.  Snow is predicted for Wednesday though so that should improve things.

So supper is going in the oven and on the menu there is barbecued spare rib with potato wedges and should be ready in about half an hour.  LN....My move downstairs is imminent.....LN



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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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