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Elsa Peters
March 1, 2021, 3:45pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 1st March

Well here we go again...another month and they seem to fly by at the moment....maybe it's because I'm getting older.  So all my good plans went out or the window....I thought that Djebel would be humming so decided that I shall go in in the morning....my babas will have to wait another day. So the restaurants in Bulgaria have opened their doors today, and we'll see how well they do at counting how many are allowed at each table.  They've put the restrictions at fifteen at the moment to stop weddings so let's see how the locals get round that.  I'd like to wish friends and family a Happy Baba Marta day....I've not sent cards and wrist bands this year, the postage has been so naff getting here that I didn't want to risk it the other way.  I'm still waiting for my birthday cards from Moonpig.. Princess and my son are probably entitled to refunds....the cards are now almost two weeks overdue.  Bit more good news...my student's sister has produced a daughter at the hospital in Momchilgrad.  Lots of pictures on FB of balloons and boxes...we potentially have another Princess on the way.

Breakfast was very late this morning....one boiled egg underdone and the other overdone.  The underdone one that was still in its shell went back in, I didn't eat the first one quickly enough and that was the one that became overdone.  There must be a system, poached are much easier to control.  It was too cold to go out gardening, it was white over and the temperature was down to minus two...I thought it had started to warm up overnight but I was wrong.  It was up to twenty four inside though so I lay on the sofa, Princess had sent me down a suggestion on Netflix so I started to watch Rebecca and really enjoyed it.  The After Eights took another beating, I have one box left.  It's been another lazy day.  I did managed to put a pork curry in the slow cooker, the rice is on the woodburner drying out and supper should be ready and over by six.

So let's see what happens tomorrow...this time I make no promises.  LN....Rice needs checking....LN






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Elsa Peters
March 2, 2021, 4:50pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 2rd March

Absolute fiasco last night with my special night of quiz programmes....I fell asleep during the first and woke up watching the programme after the ones I wanted to watch.  So to bed miffed but I went straight to sleep and woke up at six thirty so at least my Fitbit recorded a good sleep score for me.  The upside was that I've felt awake all day but as for energy and enthusiasm, I'm not sure where that's disappeared to.  I settled for toast and Marmite for breakfast, washed and dressed for town but as I was working up the energy to set off my neighbour who looks after her mother but lives in Kardjali came round with some cake and coffee.  Apparently she was celebrating the anniversary of her husband's death so I got goodies and a packet of coffee powder.  I was surprised that my neighbour wasn't working but she said that they had no work for the rest of the week so she's using her time to work on their gardens.  I think it's sheer habit as to how much they grow....there's only two of them and she's only here at weekends.

I offered coffee and she accepted and she's the one that looks at everything growing in the garden or pots and either wants the pot or a cutting.  The bizzie lizzies came under scrutiny and yes, I lost the new cutting including a pot to a container to put it in.  She was also eying up my bay tree that's destined for the garden but I managed to keep it intact.  I tried to explain what it was and eventually I checked Google translate and we agreed that it was a bay tree and yes, I'll be taking her a cutting when mine settles in the garden.  Off she went at around eleven thirty, we discussed the vaccine and I was wanting her to ask me to take her and I would have done but lots of the locals are unsure of whether to have it or not.  When I saw her to the gate, that wind was raw so I put another sweater on and filled up the two log baskets from the porch.  I didn't linger long outside, even without a fire the house was warm so that made my mind up that I wasn't venturing out today....I'd had enough fresh air.

Played around on ancestry this afternoon, I'm determined to find my relatives that headed off to Canada but despite my best efforts, still no nearer.  I think I need to contact the daughter of one of my grandfather's brother.  Apparently her grandfather went out to visit them but I think she may have to really delve into memory banks.  I remember my mother had a dish that she was very proud of that came back from Canada but when my parent's home was taken apart when my father died, I haven't a clue where it went and my sister is not around to ask.  Watched Countdown this afternoon and settled down with the remains of the tub of cream cheese and biscuits so I shan't be needing supper tonight.  Gentle sunset and that temperature is really going down again, the fire's going well so it will be soon time to draw the curtain between the lounge and the stairwell.  LN....Let's see if I can stay awake until bedtime.....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 3, 2021, 5:36pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 3rd March

Well despite a really white over start this morning, it warmed up considerably and I've had a good day in the garden.  I woke up around six thirty, made coffee and went back to bed after checking the outside and inside temperatures on the weather station....it was cccc....old but by seven the sun was up and my free central heating had arrived.  Out of bed by seven, meandered around for a while emptying the bathroom bins and waste paper bins and getting it ready for a bonfire later.  I watched a little of morning television until I got fed up with the news, moved to the kitchen and was having bacon and egg on toast by eight thirty and putting hamburger sausages into the remains of the rice and curry sauce and that was going to be supper for much later.

I'd started watching a Netflix series last night, Alias Grace and it had sort of fascinated me.  Based on the book my Margaret Attwood I feel now that I'd like to read the book to see if it came to a better conclusion than Netflix.  After breakfast I watched another couple of episodes, eventually got washed and dressed and went outside to get on with some gardening...it was too good a day to waste.  I first potted up some buddlieh cuttings that were lingering in water and they're now in the little house, I started the bonfire, picked up the hedge trimmers and the loppers from the wood store and headed for the front gate.  The rose had gone out of control and so had the honeysuckle that had wound itself round it so now it's all chopped back.  Now I hate roses, nice to look at but dreadful to trim back and I always seem to get stabbed.  I put off the fateful task and went back in the house, back to Netflix and finished the series.  I felt stunned and couldn't work out if Grace had lied her way though it, was really responsible for the death of her master and housekeeper or had really been taken over by another entity.  If in doubt refer to the book....screen writers have a strange way with them.

Back outside, and cleared the roses and honeysuckle from in front of the Nipper and got it moved down to the bonfire and eventually I got it going well.  I looked at the buddlieh and they were about to put out leaves so they both got trimmed back since they were quite leggy and they kept the bonfire going for even longer.  On the downside, the burning bin is almost on its last legs and this last session has put it into the 'dispose and replace' slot on the things to do list.  The last one came from the garage so I shall have to pay them a visit to see if they have a spare one that I can buy from them...after all I do get two for the price of one barrel.

I came in at five and got the fire going, put some of the curry and rice into a bowl and had an early supper followed by After Eights.  Had my best day for a while on Fitbit today, knocked off nine thousand and six hundred steps today and might have to walk round the house a few times to reach the goal.  Lots of fresh air today and bending and stretching so I've put the boiler on for a bath and as soon as I've posted this, that's where I'm heading.  LN...Good to get back into gentle exercise again......LN





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Elsa Peters
March 4, 2021, 5:59pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 4th March

Six thirty start, I did have my bath last night and woke up with the water cold at eleven so got dried, warmed by the fire and then to bed.  I always remember my mother banging on the bathroom door and asking if I was asleep which woke me up and I responded with 'no, of course not'.  I've been doing it for years and I'm still here to tell the tale.

Another cold night but the central heating came up at just after seven and with the sun came the rise in temperature.  The water was off, I couldn't wash up but I did manage to make beans on toast for breakfast.  The birds got a slice of bread and the cats got the remains of the curried sausages over the wall and it was still early.  It was a chemical wash for me and I got dressed determined to do something and my intention was to go to the garage and get a new oil barrel to replace the burning bin in the garden,  I'd just put my face paint on and there was a knock on the door.  It was my Fotinovo friend, he guessed that I was about to go out and I explained where so we didn't make coffee, we headed to Djebel and down to the garage.  I saw the owner, explained what I wanted and we went to the back of the garage and there were small ones and big ones so I chose to small ones that I'll paint and use for flower containers and the big one was halved, the tops are off the small ones and we sat in the sun waiting for the work to be done.  I paid the man, we drove back into Djebel and sat in one of the open air cafes and enjoyed being out and about again.  Lots of distance between the tables with the waitresses wearing masks so we didn't have to.  I had a phone call from the post office and arranged to call in on the way back from town...a parcel and cards had arrived...and only two weeks late.

Back to mine and the car was unloaded while I put the kettle on and again, we sat out in the sun with more coffee.  He put me through my paces with my new phone getting me to speak to the lady that appears to be trapped inside it and get her to make phone calls for me.  I managed it but I think even she was getting frustrated with me.  Off he went, I took one of the larger down to the bottom of the garden, took the old one off the stones, dug out the contents into the log carrier and dumped it in the far corner of the garden.  I put the new one in place and the old one is crumpled ready to go down to the container in the village square tomorrow.  I put a load of washing in just in case the water is off tomorrow again. washed up, made a coffee and finished the After Eight and put on Netflix since Transponder TV just didn't want to hold the signal.

It's been a lovely day today, beautiful weather, new burning pit in place and two more barrels to get planted up tomorrow.  Early March and sitting out in the sun in a warm breeze, I don't mind cold nights as long as that sun shows its face.  LN.....Sixteen tomorrow so it's a gardening day......LN



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Elsa Peters
March 5, 2021, 6:38pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 5th March

Woke just before seven, sun was up and what a good night's sleep.  I went to bed quite early last night and didn't exercise my brain on brainteasers before bedtime with sudoku and silly games, straight to sleep and it worked.  It wasn't so cold out this morning but since the sun was up already, the temperature station had already recorded the increase.  Princess phoned this morning for a catch up and it was good to talk to her.

The water was still a problem today, it was running but very slowly and I reckoned there was a problem with the water pump that pushes it round the villages.  I went out and fed the birds, managed to wash up from yesterday and didn't bother with breakfast.  At ten I put the rubbish that was destined for the container into the log carrier, picked up a pack of martenitsa wrist bands and headed off thinking that I was bound to run into some of the ladies.  As I was trundling by Haciber's house she came out to see where I was going so I slipped a band on her wrist and knotted it to keep it in place and she told me that Beyser and Zelinger were in her house so I left my trolley by the road, shoes on the doorstep and went into the lounge and the fire was at full pelt.  It was roasting in there and despite being invited to coffee, there wasn't much air in there so I abstained, fitted them with wristbands and left.  I carried on with my log carrier and dumped the rubbish in the container and visited the younger neighbour when I saw her working in the garden.  I applied the wrist band, again she offered me coffee that I refused and then she came out with two glasses of coke so we sat in the garden enjoying the morning.  Her mother came out to join us with a plate of biscuits...so I was having a late breakfast.  I was offered onions but came back with a jars of pine tip syrup and one of strawberry and I had great fun trying to get her to say 'strawberry'.  Bulgarians can't get their tongues round three consonants and then the vowel.  Walking back I saw the lady that has the garden next to my house so she had a band and then Emula's mother noticed that there was activity and came out for hers.  I carried on home, put my log carrier away, locked up and that was the end of activity for today.

I went on the computer upstairs, answered emails and settled in to watch Loose Women.  Went down to the kitchen and cooked a couple of beef burgers and had them on bread with tomato sauce.  Now this really was my late breakfast, late lunch and was probably going to be my last for the day and so far so good.  A full tummy requires rest and I promptly fell asleep in front of the computer for an hour or so and at five went down to close the windows since the temperature was dropping and there was another phone call from the UK and we made it last for an hour or so...again, another catch up.  I went down and lit the fire, it was a slow starter but eventually I got it going and have just thrown another log on and it's going well.  The outside temperature is still nine degrees but having checked the weather forecast for tomorrow, it's supposed to snow tomorrow night but only a token offering of one centimetre but it should be white over by Sunday morning.

Athletics have just started so I'm going to wind up.  LN.... Another lazy day.....LN
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Elsa Peters
March 6, 2021, 6:01pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 6th March

Another funny night.  I went to sleep in front of the computer again and woke up at the beginning of a programme about the archaeologist who discovered and excavated the site of Koner in Turkey.  It charted him finding a hill and with perseverance persuaded the Turkish government to allow his to work the site and it went back approximately to ninth century BC....four thousand before the Egyptians.  The good news is that this is on the list of stop-offs if you take the trip down to Cappadocia only flying to Antalya not taking the road trip as I did last time.  It's not on my bucket list.  History states that the first civilisation was in Mesopotamia, Ur of the Chaldees and this find blasted the theory out of the water. What he found from his excavations was that there were not roads and the houses were placed against each other and they enter the houses by using ladders and the flat roof of each house became the roadway.  There was also a tour of the museum in Ankara and I was lucky enough to go round it and see lots of the exhibits from the site and it made more sense after seeing the programme. It was two thirty more or less when the programme finished so again...late to bed.

I woke at six thirty and then went back off again until eight fifteen which was much more respectable.  It was a dull old morning but the temperature was OK so I meandered round the house and eventually cooked poached egg on toast for breakfast and put on the athletics and watched that until more or less two this afternoon.  I did a few things in between including seeing off a gypsy fellow that barged his way into the conservatory while I was lying on the sofa so I bounded out to stop him in his tracks.  In his hands he had huge bedcovers that he was selling and offered them to me at ridiculously low prices and mumbling that he needed benzine for his car.  I told him I didn't been them and that he must leave and eventually he went but really quite persistent.  I ventured out into the garden and weeded a couple of the pots and one of the edged flower beds but that wind was cold so I didn't stay out for long.  I filled up the log container and brought that into the conservatory heeding the warning that there could be snow overnight....one centimetre....but best be prepared.  

Netflix went on this afternoon and I finished watching the end of Robert the Bruce and his defence of Scotland against the English.  I'm getting much better at history thanks to Netflix!!  I put a chicken leg with diced potatoes into the oven and at five thirty I had supper ready for eating.  Washing up done, blog in the process and I've just put the athletics back on for the next session.  Nothing much on now until 'The Voice' later tonight and so now time to relax....not that today has had much pressure attached to it.  LN....Probably heading into Djebel tomorrow to buy the plants for the ladies for Women's Day on Monday the 8th,,,,,LN




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Elsa Peters
March 7, 2021, 7:32pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 7th March

So midnight when I hit the sack last night and didn't wake up until just after seven thirty.  That one centimetre of snow didn't materialise, it was minus one degree outside, nineteen in, but there was a chill wind that kept me indoors for most of the day.  I had very little to go out for, I had enough wood and food in but I was hunting around for something sweet to eat and the cupboard was bare Mother Hubbard...but I survived.

I had an early bath and lingered for about an hour an a half and realised in retrospect that I should have lit the fire before I headed upstairs.  I dressed quickly to keep the warmth in, made toast and had it with apricot jam and then turned on the athletics to catch up on the morning results and events.  I checked my emails and FB's and was surprised to receive an email from an old work colleague from thirty odd years ago.  We've sort of kept in touch but without much detail and I'll respond to it when I work out the answers.  We lived quite a way from each other when I was in the UK so it wasn't easy to see each other.....but Covid over, she will be included in my road trip of the UK....whenever that happens.  I kept looking at the wood burner and realised that the only thing between me a a raging fire was a match and I gave in and set fire to it and was soon enjoying the warmth and view of a roaring log fire.

So the athletics finished and I carried on watching a series on Netflix and it became very easy to just press 'next' and watch until the end. It was originally made in France and overdubbed with American accents and the occasional shot of Madame Guillotine seemed strangely out of place considering the date of the drama was set around 1808.  Around six my time the hunger bugs became very active so I pushed the 'pause' button and ended up with several corned beef and brown sauce sandwiches and the gap was filled so I continued until the final credits.  Over to Transponder again to continue with the athletics and they'd finished so it was on to the Red Button to watch the results and award ceremonies and now it's back to BBC 2 to finish off the day nicely.

I didn't managed to get into Djebel today so it's going to be a fairly early start tomorrow to get the Ladies Day flowers or pot plants for friends in Djebel and for the ladies of the village....March is a busy month.  I'll do a top up shop in the local supermarket, I'm at Immigration in Kardjali on Wednesday so will do a bigger shop when I'm there.  LN....Time to throw another log on the fire....LN
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Elsa Peters
March 8, 2021, 5:14pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 8th March

Firstly Happy International Women's Day to all my female friends.  We've all come a long way!!

Another silly night.  I fell asleep watching Antiques Roadshow, woke up at twelve. started to watch another to wake up enough to go to bed, it was a series and the next one followed and suddenly the final part of it was going to show so I decided to watch until the end,  End result.....three AM..... and another one that I didn't really get the ending. I checked the weather before I went to bed and it was a cold old night and at three the stars were very bright and on the weather station it was showing minus three out...fortunately I was in.  And so to bed.

Good night's sleep despite the fact that there was little of it since I woke up at half eight but adding the two sessions together I'd knocked up my eight hours or so Fitbit would tell me.  I put a load of washing in the machine and set it going, washed dress for Djebel, didn't bother with breakfast thinking I'd get something in town.  I hung the washing on the line and set off for town and eventually found a parking place behind the market.  I went to the shop where I normally buy my flowers but the pot plants were very expensive and not very good quality so I didn't buy them and decided to look for other stalls on the market. I didn't have any luck but had noticed on my drive in that I'd seen flowers outside another shop so walked over to it and they had just one pretty yellow rose left so I snapped it up for my student's mum and first stop was to deliver it.  She apologised that she had nothing for me so I reiterated that I don't give to receive, we had a chat but the shop got busy so I said fond farewells and went back to the original flower display.  I bought ten individually wrapped carnations, back to the car, delivered on to my other student's mum and again she was very busy so I had a quick update with her and then down to the supermarket for the essential supplies and then home.  I parked up and then decided to deliver the flowers to the ladies before putting the Nipper in the drive and noticed that there were no little black slip-on shoes outside Haciber's house and suddenly noticed that they were all sitting on the benches near the square so I drove down there and gave out my flowers wishing them all 'Chestit praznic'.....Happy ladies day.  As I was about to pull away, the free food for pensioners delivery wagon was delivering and every one of the ladies was given another carnation and the man stopped and gave me one,  A present from the mayor of Djebel....so this is where my rates go.

Home for two thirty and I'd bought a pizza from one of the shops in Djebel along with a banichka so I finished the banichka and save the pizza for tonight to save me cooking.  Washing in, fire lit and then a phone call to the UK to check up on an old friend to confirm that she was OK.  We go back to teenage years and there's only a few of us left now so we care a lot about each other.  

No mistakes tonight.....when I feel tired I'm gong to bed no matter the time....although the sofa is pretty comfortable.  LN.....Nothing on for tomorrow so far, I'll wait and see.....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 9, 2021, 5:01pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 9th March

So another late night, early morning but not as bad as the night before.  I did managed two and a half out of three quiz programmes but woke up in time to get to bed reasonably.  I slept well and woke up at seven thirty, not a bad morning but cold so I got dressed quickly to retain the night-time heat in the old bones.

I made toast and jam for breakfast, put yesterday's bread that I'd bought into the freezer and managed to get the washing up done, kitchen tidied and collected up the rubbish for a bonfire.  I did remember that the new burning barrel had had oil stored in it so I gingerly got the fire going.  It blazed well and so next time it should be alright and I kept it going by trimming back a few of the bushes that had just started to bud so killed two birds with one stone so to speak,  Having trimmed the bushes back I decided to tackle the weeds on the long bed under the little house terrace and things are looking better.  I moved to the little bed between the two sets of stairs and it took a while, but that's now cleared and I finished with a flourish by filling the log carrier, wheeled it in and went on to the upstairs computer,  

I posted a picture yesterday of the graffiti that I found in one of the parish records and it caused quite a stir.  Several have commented on it and want to know where to find it and after one and a half hours I gave up.  I remember writing down the name of the parish and the book but could I find it,....no and that's really frustrating.  I started to look at the records in and around the same time but still no joy so I gave up and it will be there for another day.  So at five this afternoon I realised that I'd left my toys out so went out and put them away, locked up the little house and lit the fire to bring comfort to the homestead.  I made my way to the  kitchen, peeled a potato and an onion, diced the potato and put it on to boil,  The onions went into a bowl with the contents of a tin of tuna and when the potatoes were done they were added to the bowl and mayonnaise topped everything off, a quick stir round and supper was ready.  

Working in the garden today has given me the enthusiasm to get the garden sorted.  The lawnmower wants a service before I strike it up for this year so it's on the list but top of the list for tomorrow is to get my new registration card.  I'm making an early start just in case the masses decided to gather but by nine I should be OK and bet the rush.  LN....Better get a really early night.....LN
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March 10, 2021, 6:06pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 10th March

So it was an early night last night and slept through until six thirty and didn't have to be anywhere until nine...so time to fill.  I didn't bother with breakfast but should have done, I was in the Nipper at twenty after eight and thought I would manage to get to the cafe bar for nine...and I made it...spot on.  The Migration office was round the corner and we should have set off straight away but didn't and waited in line.  I was just picking up my new card and my compatriots were making sure of the process for getting their cards renewed.  The lady who was handling my transaction was about as pleasant as a bulldog that's eaten a nettle and had trouble locating my card.  She checked the safe, went into the back office and ended up locating it in the computer, back to the back office and a signature was required before I took possession.  I tried to be pleasant with her but with a mask on it's only possible to smile with the eyes...and she was having none of it.  My compatriots questions were partly answered but our sleuth found the forms that need completing written in Bulgarian and English so all they need is a person writing Bulgarian...sorted.

We walked round and picked up a picture that had been framed and what a good job they've made of it.  The frame seems to pick out the colours of the picture...a consolidated good choice.  They wrapped it and we made our way to the polyclinic to check if we could have our second jab but they didn't have any and it was too early anyway.  They also queried an EHIC card under the Bulgarian system, I have mine already covered by England since I'm a pensioner and managed to find a local who wanted to show them where they could complete the necessary forms and pay the fees.  The bank had closed for lunch so that's going to be saved for another day.

We met up again in Lidl, I filled up with a few essentials and carried on to Djebel where I bought the new down pipe for the outside sink and an aerosol spray can of green paint for the oil barrel that I bought and I already have a blue one for the other one.  Back home, shopping away and lay on the sofa and had a quick nap but nothing to write home about.  I lit the fire and went upstairs on the computer and managed to find the elusive graffiti drawing in one of the Parish record books so posted the location to a couple of people on the ancestry website who'd asked where they could find the original.  I had to find it for my own sake....I'm like a terrier at times.

Just thrown another log on the fire, cream cheese and breadsticks for supper and that will see me through until morning.  Supposedly we're in for another cold spell so I shan't be moving far from home and that fire will be kept alive and well.  LN....I have my new residency card.....another job out of the way.....LN
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Thursday 11th March

Lovely night's sleep and I was really surprised when I opened the curtains.  We had had a delivery of snow and it was still coming down.  It was the wet sloppy stuff and it started to dissolve around lunchtime but it's still there now.  Temperature was around minus one over night but has gone up to about two degrees plus but destined to go down again later tonight.  Lots of freezing fog around this morning and I'm pleased that I'd changed my original plans for today to visit one of the other markets in the area.  Not a day to go visiting or shopping.  I toyed with the idea of lighting the fire and when I checked it was still going from last night so it was a matter of sticking another log on it and it's been going all day.  

Mushrooms on toast for breakfast and I peeled the rest of the mushrooms intending to make soup for tonight and they're still sitting in the saucepan awaiting my attention.  I tidied the kitchen and collected up some washing and got that on the clothes airer in the bathroom, it will be dry ready  to put away in the morning.  As for the rest of the day, I've been a bit 'picky' on food, finished off a bag of jelly crocodiles, made a ham baguette for lunch and just finished off the cream cheese with the bread sticks.  I only ventured out of the house to top up the log basket from the good wood stored in the little house and the log carrier from the wood store just to make sure that I didn't run out later today.  I had to get out the snow shovel to clear a path to the wood store, for some reason the snow was deeper there and hadn't melted.  

More of the same tomorrow, I've started to clear out the filing to do with my ancestor records.  I've got five trees going at the moment, my father's family I've concentrated on the most, my mother's family on my grandfather's side is going OK but grandmother's family name was Jones and that's more difficult to sort out.  I've gone back two generations on my brother in law's family and I've reviewed some of the results from my seasonal guest's family from Scotland when more records were released.  There's an awful lot of filing to do and I certainly won't be venturing out.  LN.....A very restful day....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 12, 2021, 4:38pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 12th March

Another cold start but the temperature went up to about five degrees and we've had the thaw so it's been water dripping noisily down the drainpipes but at last everything has dried up.  I've just been out to put bread with the remains of the gravy that I made over the wall for the cats and didn't stay out there very long, the wind was still cold so I'm pleased that I've kept the fire going all day.  Admittedly the door to the conservatory was open as I took up a position on the sofa with my Kindle and it was just about right temperature wise.

I didn't have a good night, I was still reading at three this morning but eventually lights out and went to sleep.  I was still awake at seven though and managed to see the day out without shutting my eyes.  I had my first half tablet of the day before breakfast and the one that I've gone back on that the doctor recommended, after breakfast.  I read up on the dose and can double it from what was prescribed, it's a vitamin with extras.  The idea is that it supplies more blood to the brain and keeps you firing on all cylinders so I topped up with two months supply when I was in Kardjali on Wednesday.  They're expensive but if they work, worth it.  Two days in they must have done something, I made poached eggs on ham for breakfast and got a duck breast from the freezer this morning and roasted potatoes and red cabbage in a casserole in the oven and topped it all off with orange gravy...delicious.

Not a lot of activity today, I started to read 'The Book Thief' again and realised that I'd not read the author's preface so had missed out on a lot of scene setting.  Now I thin I shall understand the plot better and at eight percent in, I'm keen to continue.  LN...More of the same tomorrow....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 13, 2021, 3:35pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 13th March

Cold overnight again and the central heating was slow to come up this morning but when it did, despite a cold wind, it's been beautiful in the sun.  I made coffee and went back to bed for a while but at eight thirty I was making an omelette of ham and cheese using up the last old eggs and by nine, the kitchen was tidy and I was looking for things to do.  I toyed with the idea of having a bath and lazing for a couple of hours but instead, washed and dressed and the bath is scheduled for later this evening.  I went on to the computer on the landing and started looking through some old photographs that I'd brought from the UK and realised that I hadn't got them on this computer so I retook photos of them and I'll load them later.  I've got some of me in a knitted swimsuit at the tender age of two and I really should put them into an album for my daughter and link them to the ancestry records that I've managed to work through.  

There was quite a lot of commotion in the lane outside the garden which is next to mine.  A tractor was attempting to get into the garden from the road and had difficulties negotiating the ditch and the fact that he was trying to get through only a gate's width.  He tried it front ways a few times and then realised that no way was he going to manage it so he ended up going in backwards which was much more sensible considering the size of the wheels.  I found out a jacket for her to work in that I'd put on one side for my friend in the village.  I locked up and started to make my way down to her house but noticed that there was a crowd of men in the square and I wasn't sure if they were having a service at the mosque or someone had died so I went back home and I was updated by my garden neighbour's husband.  Apparently there are elections due and the posses were out.  I went down a little later and six of my ladies were sitting on the benches and all clutching freeby hats with the logo on.  They asked me if I had one and I said that I supported the other party, their eyes shot up and I said that it was a joke and no I hadn't got one.  The neighbour was working in Kardjali, Haciber was curious to see what was in the bag but no way was I letting on.  

I went home and set to spraying the two oil containers that I'd bought but cleaned them first with spirit to get rid of the oil.  I'm very pleased with them but now they're in the little house until the weather gets better and the pots are flowering.  I moved my attention to the tyres near the little house terrace, cleaned out the area and removed the weeds.  I had a bonfire, move the outside cushions to the bench on the terrace, made a cup of coffee, demolished a packet of tea biscuits, planted sunflower seeds four to a pot and put the tools away.  Lots of the garden coming to life again despite the recent snow, one or two have suffered especially the japonica but most other things are fine.  Camera at the ready I moved round the garden and now at five twenty, it's time I lit the fire.  Not thinking about supper so far, the biscuits were a mistake so it will probably to cheese and biscuits.  LN.....Boiler going on......LN



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Elsa Peters
March 14, 2021, 6:25pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 14th March

Happy Mothers' Day to all those out there and I'm fondly remembering my mother on this day.  I think I 'took the wings' that she wasn't able to by virtue of the fact that I was born thirty odd years after her and I have to thank her for lots.  I suppose she gave me the courage to go out there even though that little girl on the inside was concerned for the outcome of some of the things that I've done, but I tried and most of the time managed it.  I sorted out Mothers Day cards from my stash, thanks to Bulgarian post and Moonpig, despite assurances to my daughter that it would be delivered on time...the odds were against it.  I'll cancel the day until the card arrives as I did with my birthday.

Princess phoned very early for her to wish me a happy day.  I had a pretty slow start and it's been a pretty slow day.  I went out to carry on where I'd left off with the weeding and had every intention of getting the lawnmower fired up or more to the point to see if it would.  I started to dig it out of its winter home but gave up, despite the sun the wind was cold so I came in and settled myself on the sofa and into Netflix.  I've been watch a series that I wasn't sure if I was understanding or enjoying but by episode three I stuck it out and it got better and I binged watched it to the end.  So that was a few hours after the event.

Supper of local corned beef, baked beans and a sliced potato topping is in the oven.  There is a new programme of 'Grace' starting and I remember meeting the author of the books in Lewes Law Courts one Saturday morning at a book signing.  He did lots of his research in Brighton and Lewes and most of his books are based in and around Brighton.  I gave up on them, I had difficulty reading them in that I knew the places he was referring to and it spoiled the plot for me....I might watch the first and see how it goes.

Supper is ready so it's going to be short and sweet tonight.  Nothing on the agenda for tomorrow so far but things change.  LN....Back to my fire....LN
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Elsa Peters
March 15, 2021, 7:23pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 15th March

So no phone calls today so it looks like Mothers' Day is put off for another day.  There is only one card on its way...my son admitted last night on the phone that mine is still in the shop and I reminded him that one year I actually chose my own on the day before the day.  Good job I'm forgiving.

Six thirty start and it was very dark skies with a little touch of red over the mountains and it stayed dull until eight when the sun did break through.  I washed and dressed and found a pair of trousers that I'd forgotten I'd bought and managed to get into them so another pair to work in.  They've got pockets everywhere so a place for everything.  I didn't bother with breakfast or should I say I started work and it sort of went by the way.  I took the empty log carrier outside, filled it with the dry logs from the little house and filled up the log basket, back to the wood store and topped it and dragged it back into the conservatory.  I was ready for tonight, I laid the fire, emptied the ash can and took the depository for the ash and put it on the garden...it's wood ash after all.

It was then down to business.  I found the lawnmower and moved it into the workshop from the wood store, emptied out the old petrol so that I could turn it on its side and check that I'd put it away cleaned underneath and I had.  I removed the air filter and cleaned it out and it really needs a good wash but that could wait.  I checked the oil and topped it up, moved it on to the yard and half filled it with new petrol, pressed the bit at the front to get the petrol through and fire it up.  First time....no go...second time it burst into life so maybe it will do another year.  I need to get the blade sharpened, I did try it out on the grass in the yard and it's cutting but not that well.  I put it away, it was too wet to put it to use today and the clouds had come over again.  Next step was to check on the battery for the rechargeable strimmer and I realised that I'd got the electrics going through a timer so I had to move plugs round a bit so no fairy lights for now but at least the battery for the strimmer is charged and so is the hand held hedge trimmer.  I checked one of the units inside, five minutes later I tried to turn the kettle on and realised that the electricity to the house was no more and thought I'd messed it up.  The quickest way to check was to aske the ladies and found three pairs of little black shoes and sticks outside Beyser's house so I knocked and no, nobody had electricity so I was back in the hands of the provider....fortunately it didn't take long.  I tested the strimmer out by clearing the weeds on the front lawn which was growing high against the border surrounds. I watered the plants in the little house and noticed that there are lots of petunias that have survived the winter and so will be ready to go out when the weather settles down and winter goes.  

Tools away, it was spotting with rain and the wind was cold so I moved in to the sofa, lay down with my kindle and that was it until two thirty.  I moved up to the computer on the landing and settled in to Ancestry and devised a method of getting the tree printed out so spent the afternoon sticking and pasting  so that I can get it all on one sheet eventually so I might very well head into Kardjali tomorrow to buy some really large heavy duty paper to make the final version of the tree back to 1656 for definite until I've confirmed the rest.  I lit the fire at five thirty and put a rack of ribs with jacket potatoes in the oven at five thirty and went back up to the computer and that's when the heavens opened and the thunder and lightening started.  It was so close that I turned off both phones, toyed with turning the computer off but I kept at it and eventually it went over.  The outside temperature is eleven degrees, what a change from last week.

Supper over, fire going well, phones about to go on and it's quiz night tonight.  I've had my afternoon rest so I should manage to see the evening out.  LN....Kardjali if the weather is good,,..,I'll play it by ear.....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 16, 2021, 5:03pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 16th March

Silly five thirty start this morning and when I tried to go back to sleep, not an ounce of sleep in me so I took to the Kindle, tried to check emails and it couldn't access the server so I presumed that it had done an overnight update....and I was right.  I was out of bed by seven, finished clearing the kitchen and washing up the oven dishes from last night and made toast for breakfast.  It had rained overnight and appeared to be drying up but it wasn't the day to be walking around Kardjali with only a little shopping list so I made my mind up that I wouldn't bother.  I put a couple of slices of bread out for the sparrows and watched them on the bird house squabbling like naughty children.  I was tempted to take a photo and send it to my Avatar who's still in Germany where she's wintered with her son and daughter-in-law just to let her know that I was looking after the birds that she used to feed.  Unfortunately the camera was upstairs and I was comfortable at the table in the stairwell and it was just too much like hard work to go and get it.....another time, the sparrows will be there tomorrow.

I was playing Candy Crush on the Chuwi tablet and for some reason I was on a roll.  I managed to complete twelve challenges and my time never ran out so I ended up just shutting the lid on it...sitting still I was cold and needed to move into active mode so I did.  I washed and dressed, emptied the ash can and set the fire but chose not to set fire to it yet, the weather station was telling me that it wasn't cold but my body was telling me otherwise so another sweater went on.  I switched on the computer upstairs and next time I looked it was one thirty and my toast had been used up so I peeled two potatoes and made tuna mayo and sat at the computer on the landing and demolished the lot.  The ancestry company that I use send me lot of 'hints' but I really wish they would be more selective.  One of them pointed me in the direction of one of my great, great grandfather's sisters but in fact was nothing to do with this child but was the daughter of one of the brothers.  I'm not sure where they get their information from but resolving each hint take time and it's frustrating and so much so that I've stopped looking at them.

I lit the fire as the rain came down and the weather really set in.  I've not got to do a cooked supper tonight, lunch did what it had to and I've not used much energy on activity only keeping warm.  I've put the boiler on, I'm going to settle down for an hour in a hot bath with a book, I'm really getting stuck into the Book Thief.  LN.....Cheer up weather....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 17, 2021, 5:57pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 17th March

So another dull and miserable day.  I thought at one point it was going to clear up but no, at least it didn't rain...not that it would have made a difference to me, I've only put my nose out of the door twice, the second time to get some smaller logs to get the fire going.

I woke at seven, made coffee and moved to the stairwell and sat watching the world come to life.  Nothing much around, the birds made one visit to the feeding station and picked at the old bread and I intended to put some fresh out but I forgot but at least they had something.  The cats were pacing and even they had nothing over the wall, I'd had ribs last night and picked every bit of meat from them.  I played a few games, did my emails and checked out the postings on FB but there was nothing of interest on that.  The row rumbles on about Europe turning it's back on the vaccination and again it's probably all down to profit but with most of Europe shutting shop again, Sofia is locked down again and the rest of Europe is about to go into a panic mode.  

So ancestry again this afternoon....I've been trying to understand one of the wills that I've downloaded.  There's one mystery in it where he leaves the house and contents to his daughter Alice who is still a spinster but I can't find her birth anywhere but he could have possibly married again to an Alice Dale but I can't find the death of his first wife so I need to get my head round it.  I was doing OK until I got cold realising that it was now five so I lit the fire, put the chicken leg that I'd taken out of the freezer yesterday into the oven and went back to the document and magnifying glass.  I used the unburnt wood from last night at my attempt to get the fire going but had to resort to going to the wood store for some thin branches to give it the boost.  It didn't take long and the house was soon up to temperature, the chicken was cooked so I brought it up to the computer in the dish that I'd cooked it in and supper is over and done with...and only one dish to wash up and that can wait until tomorrow,

The garden is still waiting for attention and the grass still grows so I'm hoping that at least we get some dry weather before I have to resort to getting someone in with a giant strimmer because it's too long for the mower.  I've cut back the Bizzie Lizzie and got five new plants which I hope will root.....I'm intending to give them to my ladies for Easter.... whenever that is here...I know it's not the same as the UK.  Nothing on for tomorrow and it's been another lazy day...but it's not doing me much harm I'm sure.  LN....Time for another log......LN
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Elsa Peters
March 18, 2021, 6:52pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 18th March

Seven thirty start and it looked like it could be a good morning.  I made toast for breakfast, heaped in the coffee, stripped the bed and managed to do three loads of washing and it was still only nine thirty.  I'd decided on a shower and hair wash, it was definitely in need of love and attention but unfortunately I'd never had a shower while the washing machine was going and what a nightmare that was.  The cold fill was seemingly affecting the water supply to the shower and it was up and down like a yoyo but I'll know for next time.  It settled down when the last load finished, I lingered enjoying the warmth knowing that it was going to be a little cool as I left the shower room.  I'd been out in my PJ's and pegged out the quilt cover and the bottom sheet, the rest was on the clothes airer in the bathroom upstairs so I got dressed, dried my hair, and went out to peg out the rest of the big stuff and ...it had started to rain so back to the drawing board.  Everything went back inside, the bedlinen was draped over the banister, I lit the fire so that at least the stuff on the airer would have a chance of drying and the heat from the fire would ensure that the bedlinen was dried ready for tonight.  The quilt and bottom sheet are fleece blankets so they don't take long to dry at all provided that you put them on the top spin program and I had.

As for the rest of the day, it's been pretty laid back again.  By twelve the fire was going well, the house was warm so I took to the sofa and trawled Netflix to see what I wanted a series to watch.  Now I've heard a lot about Peaky Blinders, hadn't watched any of it when it was on the TV so settled down to watch the first and yes, it's interesting so I did three episodes straight after each other and I could be hooked.  I made tuna mayo with toast for a late lunch and as the weather deteriorated rapidly I hunkered down, got the chocolates out and envisaged myself as the Lindor Chocolate eating lady with the long sleeved sweater that gets cosied up.  Too many years between us but I can dream.

I got mince out of the freezer this morning intending to do something with it but it's now in the fridge.  The tuna and toast will suffice for tonight and I'll blame it on the chocolate.  The bed's made up, the mattress turned and top to bottomed which was a bit of an effort but I managed it, I'm clean from my shower and shampoo so I'm looking forward to snuggling down in the nest tonight.  It really is throwing it down outside and appears to be set in for the night.  I hope it clears up for tomorrow, I'm going to clean out the woodburner tomorrow.  It's been a bit 'smoky' today which could be down to the weather but I've noticed that since I removed one of the long pipes and put in the radiator, there has been more soot than normal accumulating in the woodburner.  Tomorrow I'm removing the radiator, it's not as cold as it was and replacing the pipe so back to original design and see if that cures it.  

Almost nine my time so soon time to test out the nest....or settle down to another episode of PB.....I think I'm going to like it.  I've done some more on ancestry and filled in a few more gaps and now have over four hundred people in my tree.  LN....Time to investigate a stand alone program....LN
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Elsa Peters
March 19, 2021, 6:56pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 19th March

Well what a surprise this morning.  I hadn't bothered shutting the curtain between me and the stairwell outside world and it was snowing.  I checked the weather reports and it said that I was in for sun and clouds...I think they'd got it wrong.  Well it was where I was sitting.  It was melting as it fell on the terrace and the outside temperature was one degree but it started coming down in huge flakes so in next to no time it was white over, around ten centimetres in the yard and terraces white over.  I felt sorry for the daffodils, hyacinths and forsythia, everything was bent over with the weight of the snow.  I made toast for breakfast and sat eating it watching the snow fall, a bit like watching paint dry and considered what I'd set up for myself for the day.  Washed and dressed, put on my fisherman's smock as a coverall and found out my rubber gloves...I was tackling the radiator and the rest of the pipes of the woodburner.

I got dressed for the outing to the woodstore for brushes and tubs to put the pipes in as I dismantled them and found the pipes that were replacing the radiator.  It had to be done, the soot in the radiator was blocking the airways and smoke was escaping.  I brought the three rung step ladder in and removed the radiator pipes and this gave more space to take the others out.  I put them straight into the tub so that the soot went into it and then it was straightforward removal.  I appeared to be juggling pipes at one point and dropped one which scattered soot on the lounge carpet but there was soon a naked woodburner in front of me.  I cleaned the woodburner and to be honest there wasn't a lot of soot in it and the pipes were more or less clear,  The problem was obviously the radiator, I banged it a couple of times on the base of the tub and quite a lot was removed but it wasn't going back.  It was snowing outside and I wanted to get the fire going.  Pipes replaced and the fire lit at around eleven and no issues with smoke escaping....my job was done. I tidied up and put the tools away, got in more starter wood from the little house and filled up the log carrier with old and new wood.  I hoovered round to get up the spillages, made a cup of coffee and settled down on the sofa...Peaky Blinders.  Along with the coffee went a packet of biscuits and they are no more.  

The snow had slowed down and the temperature went up and it was melting as it was falling.  The terraces have cleared themselves which saved me the trouble and it should be gone by tomorrow providing the thermometer doesn't fall.  I moved to the kitchen and used the mince to make spaghetti bolognaise and there was plenty for tonight and the rest has gone into the fridge for tomorrow.  I was going to make cannelloni but couldn't be bothered to stuff the pasta so I shall be doing that tomorrow.  So supper over, washing up done and kitchen tidied and I felt a bit of a niggle in my back where I'd obviously stretched getting the pipes out so I've put the boiler on for a Badedas bath.  LN....An hour's relaxation....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 20, 2021, 6:13pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 20th March

So I woke first time when it was dark, paid a trip to the little room and instead of grabbing the Kindle I snuggled down again and it was seven thirty when I woke for the second time....it's a habit I must get in to.  Coffee, I sat at the table in the stairwell and there wasn't a lot of activity in the garden, very few birds about, no cats and there appeared to be a few snow flakes but that's as far as it got.  The thaw was on.  I got dressed, it was down to sixteen degrees in the lounge and only one degree outside and again put on my Lindor chocolate sweater, it makes me feel cosy but unfortunately not a chocolate in sight....I'd finished them yesterday so instead I settled for scrambled eggs on toast which went down very well.  I'd had boiled eggs the other morning and felt queasy after them so I thought I'd cook them well today so no repercussions.

I lit the fire and decided that the rest of my day would probably be spent watching Netflix, Peaky Blinders was about to fill my day but someone else had a different plan.  I'd struck up the first episode of the day and there was a knock window and I had a visitor.  I hadn't opened up shop for the day so the outside door was still locked but I let him in, he put the kettle on while I turned off the TV and opened up the lounge...not space for two to sit comfortably now the TV has replace the visitor's chair.  Coffee made we settled down for a catch-up and I'm reliably informed that this weather is going to continue for another week or so and then we get back to late spring temperatures.  There's supposed to be more snow intermingled with sleet and rain so Peaky Blinders is going to come into its own or I'll have to find something else to do like sewing or being creative with material and a glue gun.  So two coffees down and off he went around one heading homewards and I settled down again but at three I felt the need to go into Djebel.  If snow was on the cards I needed more bread, mayo and potatoes so at three thirty I was in the Nipper and off to Djebel complete with a shopping list.  A few cars coming the other way on the lane and speed so I was really careful, the sides of the lane still had snow on it and of course we had some very bored cows on the road waiting for milking.  I didn't go any further than the first supermarket, managed to sneak into a space near the door and grabbed a trolley, they make life easier.  Onions and potatoes went in first, apricot juice and then I attacked the biscuits where they have small packets for about forty five stotinki and I never feel guilty about finishing the packet, they only contain around eight biscuits...just enough.

The same bored cows were still waiting on the road so I gingerly went round them, shopping unpacked and put away and I decided to walk the garden, and counted that I have fourteen forsythia bushes in flower, some very large patches of daffodils and the blossom on the apricot is a beautiful shade of pink.  I walked back to the house and picked up the rubbish and the lighter and went down and set fire to it in the burner.  I could have down with collecting everything that wanted burning but there'll be another day.  I made coffee and had one of the small packs of biscuits, headed for the kitchen and stuffed the cannelloni, with the remains of yesterday's bolognaise, made white sauce, poured it over the stuffed cannelloni and it should be ready anytime now.  Fire was reluctant when I got back from Djebel but I coaxed it into life again and it burning well now.  'The Voice' final tonight at ten thirty my time so I'll try to stay awake for it.  Nothing on for tomorrow now that I've topped up on supplies from Djebel, I should be OK until the snow clears.  LN....Supper calls....LN
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Elsa Peters
March 21, 2021, 5:43pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 21st March

So a very early start for me and it did force me to get my head down this afternoon for an hour or so.  I made coffee and started my day, it was down to sixteen degrees in the house and zero degrees outside with firstly snow, then rain and sleet and now back to snow.  The fire was still going this morning so I gave it the kiss of life, resuscitated it and it's been going all day.  

I decided to make breakfast of beans on toast, put the loaves that I'd bought yesterday into the freezer if this weather is going to continue.  Unfortunately I opened a tin of cannelloni beans by mistake so put them to oneside and I was going to have to concoct something to use them up.  Beans on toast went down well, I hadn't bothered getting dressed but had had a 'chemical' wash with Micellar water so had freshened up and went back to the kitchen, fried off the pork with onions, added the beans, a can of tomatoes and some chili flakes and that's now in the slow cooker for supper.  I cleared the kitchen and then settled down to Peaky Blinders for a binge session.

This was disturbed, at eleven one of my neighbours daughters appeared at the window as I was stretched out on the sofa.  It was the one that I'd promised the jacket to so I invited her in, switched the television off, made coffee, went back and grabbed the bag with the jacket from the porch and we sat in the lounge well apart from each other.  Apparently the  Covid numbers in Bulgaria have risen sharply and even though I've had one jab, I'm still very careful.  She works in Kardjali and the hospital is said to be full....she should be more careful because of her mother and the rest of my neighbours.  No one is having the vaccination, they don't believe Covid exists and that they are impervious to catching it.   One word for it...'Covidiots'....I gave her the jacket which I suggested she use for gardening and she said she would use if for work...it was too good to garden in.  She left about twelve fifteen wearing the jacket and the snow had started to come down again so she was protected on her way home.

Back to the sofa for me and log duties and it was while watching a gardening program that I nodded off.  I got through about three more of my Netflix and it's very compulsive viewing....a family at war.  Seven thirty my time, I've just got back into my pyjamas and am about to sort out supper.  It's white over again now with the temperature falling so let's see what we're left with tomorrow.  LN....Another restful day.....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 22, 2021, 3:51pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 22nd March

Another late to bed watching Netflix and an early start and instead of getting my head down again I rose into my little world with coffee. Sudoku and more coffee.  The fire was just about going but didn't really burst into life when I put some kindling on so ended up adding a fire lighter and we were soon underway.  It was just on zero outside but was down to fifteen in the stairwell and I was cold and fortunately the fire soon pumped it up to seventeen and the addition of an extra sweater helped out.  I hate these cold miserable days, the snow had gone except for on the mountains but there wasn't a glimmer of sun at all...I know it's up there somewhere but there was a thumping great cloud base that was denying its existence.  

I made toast for breakfast, put the remains of last night's supper into the freezer for another day and thought about what I could get up to today.  There was no chance of doing anything outside, even a bonfire was out of the question despite having things to burn.  Despite the cold weather the garden has really come to life with lots of different sorts of daffodils and narcissus coming into flower,  The forsythia is cheering up the garden and the iris have put on about twenty centimetres and won't belong before the buds appear.  I really need to get out there once the frost has gone to cutback the rest of the shrubs.  Green buds are already appearing but the growth will be stronger on new wood...well that's the plan according to Monty Don.

I did get my head down for an hour or so this afternoon and my day has been spent watching Netflix and feeding the fire....not good for me...I need more activity in my routine.  I could have gone into Kardjali but it's no fun walking around in the rain and spending money that I really don't need to spend....boring.  Supper tonight is the cannelloni that I didn't put in the freezer from the other night followed by stewed apples and I'm going to attempt custard using vanilla powder since there's no custard powder here.  LN....Please cheer up weather....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 23, 2021, 5:29pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 23rd March

Five thirty start and I wasn't really ready for it.  I played a few games and decided that I'd put the Kindle to bed and see if I could gain more needed sleep and I did...it was eight thirty when I came too for the second time.  I made more coffee, didn't bother with breakfast and realised that I had a telephone bill that needed to be paid so I thought I'd do it on the phone since there was a button specifically for it....wrong move.  I forgot that if paying for it with a card then I my bank had to authorise the payment sent to me via a message and at this point but coming away from the program to pay the bill to accept the authorisation details that needed to be entered, the transaction wasn't available.  What I should have done was to make the payment via the internet and then I have the authorisation code available on a separate device.  You know that feeling when you realise that you're not really getting anywhere, technology seems to be out of your reach and you're operating in a system that starts off in English because you've requested it and then the sub-screens revert to Bulgarian.  And I gave up and made the decision to go into Kardjali, do my shop in Kaufland, pay the outstanding bill and organise automatic payment each month from my bank.  CBA with the hassle.  I also went to the tax office and paid the annual charge for the Beast and all that's left is to do is to pay my annual tax for the houses in Djebel and my legal 'stuff' will be complete and I can hold my head high.  I also paid a visit to my stationery shop and bought very large paper to write up the family chart, a pen and pencil set for myself and extra leads and the bill came to twenty five leva...cheap at half the price.

Back in the Nipper and went to Kaufland and picked up essentials and not much else except hundred gram jars of Gold Blend that were on offer and cheaper than the cost of one of the two hundred gram jars.  I carried on to Lidl again to top up with butter, toilet rolls and cream cheese and that was about it.  Home for four thirty and there was a hint of snow as I came through Djebel but it was gone as I reached the village and the sun was shining but no heat in it.  Nipper unloaded and while I was out and about I filled up the log carrier so that I didn't have to go out again.  I locked up for the night, put the shopping away, lit the fire, watched an episode of Peaky Blinders, turned the TV off, went to the kitchen and put chicken leg and vegetables into the oven...that was supper sorted.  

I went up to the computer on the landing and checked emails and one confirmed that a standing order had been set up so that's another task off my monthly 'to do' list.  I went down to check on supper and my phone in my handbag was ringing and it was my Princess checking that I was still breathing and not spending the inheritance....and that's out little joke.  I mentioned that I'd spent money on stationery and I was dutifully chastised but her....we both love pens and pencils.

Supper is ready, vegetables and chicken cooked and to be served with mayo.  I'm hoping that it warms up a little tomorrow, I need to have a bonfire otherwise I might be tempted to watch the end of Peaky Blinders, it would be rude no to.  LN....I'm pleased I've been out and about today.....it makes you feel better.....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 24, 2021, 5:29pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 24th March

Funny old day.  I woke up fairly early and was surprised by a white garden after going to bed with a starry sky.  The fire was still going so I kept rejuvenated it and stoked it up, went back to bed with more coffee and the Kindle, played games, toast for breakfast and an episode of Peaky Blinders which has turned very gritty and dark but I turned it off, made my way to the bathroom and started to fill the bath.  I settled in and after an hour or so felt suitable refreshed so dried off and noticed that outside was a white out, it was gale force out there and it had dropped about ten centimetres while I was luxuriating.  I didn't linger long with the bath towel round me but did notice that the cows had been let loose to graze...poor things, they all headed for the shelter of the hedge line just over the wall.  I had a sudden thought about the electricity and tested one of the light switches and sure enough it was off and now I had to get into action quickly.  No electricity, no pump for the heating so I dressed quickly and went down to the kitchen and removed the tiles and everything that was sitting on the little boiler in the kitchen and with the shovel moved the burning wood from the biggie to the little boiler.  There was a fair sized log that I moved using the fire tongues and the metal bucket and now the heat was transferred to the kitchen leaving the door to the woodburner open to extract the heat.  It came on again after an hour or so but I wasn't seduced by it expecting it to go off again and it did but it's surprising how much heat the little one puts out.

With very little to do I started to go through the ancestry documents that substantiate the tree and threw several away.  The electricity came back on so I fired up the computer and got more confused by ancestry, I can't find a birth record for one of the blood lines and I ended up using different search criteria thinking he may have been born before his parents married but still couldn't find him and quite a lot hinges on him.  At three the weather improved considerably and I went out to clear the terraces, the drive and out to the road just in case I needed the car at any point.  My painter was coming down the road and stopped for a chat, he asked me what I was doing but I thought it was pretty obvious with snow shovel in hand.  Off he went, I filled up a couple of the log carriers and took the rubbish down to the bottom of the garden and had a bonfire and didn't stay long down there, that wind was icy.  I'd kept the little burner going and now it was time to transfer one of the new logs back again to get the big one going and it didn't take long before I had a roaring fire.

So another surprise tonight was an amazing sky after the sun had gone down.  I went outside to take photos from the terrace and the remains of the water on the terrace had started to freeze so I took my time walking back to the house.  The clouds were lit up but as the colour drained from them there were three layers, it's a clear sky now and the moon's up but goodness knows what we'll get overnight.  I'll leave it in the lap of the gods.  LN....Snow shovel is in the conservatory as a precaution....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 25, 2021, 5:18pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 25th March

Fairly early start again, it had only snowed lightly overnight and it was still coming down but very gently.  It was cold though, the weather station was showing minus five outside but inside it wasn't too bad at all. The fire was still going so I threw a log on, made coffee and went back to bed with the Kindle for an hour or so until it had really warmed up inside.  There was a glimmer of sun showing through, the grey clouds were gathering and I really wasn't sure how the rest of the day would pan out.  I made poached eggs on toast for breakfast, threw the remains of the French stick over the wall for the cats, emptied the peelings into the composter and that was my work done for the day so what was left.  I put Netflix on and carried on watching a series that I'd started last night.  It's a Spanish dubbed thingy and set in the thirteen hundred so it's historic as well and fairly good to pass the time.  There wasn't much hope of doing anything outside, too cold for me and with the snow still coming down, gently can turn into unholy chaos very quickly so I thought inside was best.  The sun came up slowly but surely and eventually the thaw set in, the air and wind was still cold but the terraces are clear and most of the snow from the garden has gone.

I settled back on the sofa with my new series and woke up again at one so I obviously needed to do a catch up on sleep due to late nights and early mornings. I made more coffee and went to put the washing that I'd done on the clothes airer in the bathroom and meandered to the computer, struck it up and sat there until five thirty on ancestry still trying to convince myself that all the links I've made are correct.  I was also investigating a program that I could use on my own computer not tying me to a search program.  I looked at one and they wanted almost eighty pounds for it so I quickly came off the site...that seems like an awful lot of money and I'll ask around my contacts.  I left the computer and got the fire going again and now it's doing what it has to do.  I made tuna mayo for supper adding boiled potatoes to pad it out and I have some left over to make a potato omelette for tomorrow's breakfast.  

Temperature's going down again so it could be another cold night and this week has seemed particularly long but Friday tomorrow, another week towards April and hopefully a bit more sun with heat in it.  LN....Bring on summer....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 26, 2021, 3:45pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 26th March

Well what a change in the weather and so welcome. I woke up at around six, opened the curtains and saw that it was white over but this time with frost and the weather station confirmed that it was fffrrreeezing out there.  I went back to bed with my coffee and noticed that the sun was about to break so I grabbed the camera and took a shot from the bed.  I was out of my nest by eight and first off was to make that potato, onion and cheese omelette for breakfast and that done, emails sorted, washed and dressed and I was looking for things to occupy me for the day.

I went out to water the plants in the porch and the well water that I'd collected was finished.  I noticed that the snow from the roof was dripping from the downpipe so I made the decision to put the water catchment system in place so that I didn't have to go down to the well.  That always seems to involve other people, I feel obliged to ask the neighbours if they want bottles filling so this meant that I would collect enough for the next few days from my roof.  I found the barrel, I'd cleaned it out before I'd put it away for the winter so nothing to do but put it in place on the bricks, I found the bucket and the filter, put everything in place and opened the tap and put a bottle in place.  As the snow melted all I got was a drip, drip but eventually I managed to fill one bottle and three quarters fill another...saves getting the Nipper out.  Next job was to clear out the brambles that had come over from near the garden next door and settled between the garage wall on the main wall and cut back the roses.  Bit of a spiky mission but managed it and disposed of without any personal damage.  I dug over the area as best I could, dug up some ground cover hypericum and planted a few roots.  I moved on to the old bonfire pit and cut back the Greek plant that flowers prolifically all summer once it get's started and cleared the weeds.  The battery strimmer came out and I'm only waiting for the zinnias to grow, the seeds are in.  I carried on with the strimmer and cleared some of the grass that seems to have, and has, a life of its own and suddenly the fireworks went off on my wrist....somehow I'd knocked off my ten thousand steps.  Quick break for coffee and some buttered bun loaf and then out to sit in the sun and sod's law, it went in so I moved back outside,

So two areas planted up, the old gravel area has cornflowers and dianthus and a seed tray has tobacco, seeds from Lanzarote and snapdragons and the tray is in the porch so hopefully they shouldn't take long to germinate.  Temperature outside reached ten degrees today so maybe we're on the up, just about to light the fire in case it drops tonight.  LN....I've had a good day.....LN



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March 27, 2021, 5:49pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 27th March

Another early start but since I started off my nightly rest period in the bath and woke up when the water was cold, I'd had my allotted sleep minutes according to Fitbit.  Back to bed with a coffee, it was minus three outside and felt chilly inside so bed was the warmest place since the fire was dead as a dodo and not worth reigniting.  The sun came up like a big red ball so I waited for it to do its stuff and it was soon warm enough to walk round in my PJ's.  I made toast for breakfast and smothered it with my home made peach jam and sat in the sun watching breakfast TV and catching up on the news.  I went upstairs to get the camera and decided that I really should get washed, dressed and teeth sorted so I could start my day.  I did what I'd gone upstairs to do but then foolishly put the computer on to do emails, spent time going through Facebook and carried on watching television on the big one until suddenly a message came up that the site wasn't secure and that I should update my security settings.  The message also asked me to check the date and time on the computer so I decided to come away from the site, switch off the computer and get out in the garden where the only security setting was the wall that I'd put round the garden to keep the cows out.

I went out and opened up the workshop and took the little electric mower out.  It was now getting on for eleven and the grass had dried off a little so I was going to see if the little machine would manage it and it did.  It did throw up a lump of something which caught me in the corner of my eye and it reminded me that I should really be wearing my work goggles so I found them out and wore them for the rest of the day.  I had a bit of a fight with the mower, I was using it without the catching basket but I had to keep the back flap up so that the grass was shot out of the machine.  I think I caught most of it in my work boots so when I'd finished the grass in front of the main terrace, I emptied them out, brushed off my jeans and socks and moved inside to make a coffee and I went out again and sat on the bench in the sun.  

Work boots and goggles on again and first job was to remove the winter cover from the veg patch and put it back under the little house terrace.  Unfortunately I had to bang a few nails in to keep it together for the move.  I took out the loppers and removed one of the junipers from the grave garden's biggest bed and trimmed the rose that used to sit by the front gate, there was lots of die back on it.  So boot filling time, out with the mower again and I did the grave garden but there was far more clumps of grass in this section and it was pretty slow going...but it's done.  Tools away, boots emptied again, socks and trousers into the washing machine, fire lit and fish finger sandwiches for supper.  LN....It's been a good day...spring may be here.....LN
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March 28, 2021, 5:42pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 28th March

So last night I put the clocks on so that I wouldn't for get and spend the day out of sync with the rest of Bulgarians. It was six thirty when I woke up and the day had already begun, only the one clock to sort....the one that is supposed to lose only one second in a million years (maybe an exaggeration on my part) but the blasted thing hadn't communicated with its controller and it hadn't moved on,  Now this weather station cum timing device is a real bastard to change and the controls are on the back of it so one tends to forget where is the clock button and the set button and it's really crucial.  I got the book out and eventually managed it and expect that it will revert tomorrow and  I'll have to go through the process again.

Coffee and back to bed with the Kindle and Sudoku and eventually I got up at eight, made toast and headed upstairs to get washed and dressed to start my day.  I'd been in conversation with my student to see if they were going to see her sister and the new baby in the near future.  I had a present that needed to be taken and it turned out that they might be going later today if everything worked out.  I'd bought a stuffed moon that was musical and decided that I would give them a money box that I'd bought in Zlatograd at the pottery centre and it's pretty unique, a brown dog with floppy ears and orange spots on it...lovely.   Suddenly I had this urge to make a money envelope /card with a little inspirational verse on it and obviously some money so that they could either buy something or put it towards something that they wanted or needed.  The garden could wait for today, I was heading to see the family.  So I made the card, wrapped the money box so that it didn't break on its journey, put everything in a gift bag and set off at eleven thirty for Djebel.

My student was there, the mother was in the garden working her socks off and the husband was working somewhere with one of the uncles.  I sat chatting for a while and was presented with food which is normal, some meat banichka, beans and cheese and pickles, crème caramel to finish with and coffee.  The mother came in and she looked shattered, apparently the family had had one or two upsets and they were having an emotionally tough time.  Of course the presents had to be unwrapped and rewrapped, my student can't leave anything alone but the card remained sealed and was for the mother and child.  The husband came back and we had a few words, they chose to eat outside and the decision was taken that they would go to visit the baby.  I thanked them for their hospitality, we couldn't hug and despite my words I don't think I can get my student to get the vaccination.  She wants that we go on holiday together but I've stated that if she doesn't have the jab, no way can we go.

I stopped off at the supermarket for eggs, bred and cheese biscuits on my way home.  The clouds were starting to come over and I toyed with the idea of starting in the garden and decided that tomorrow is another day....it could wait.  Television on and I ended up watching part of the snooker final and the World Skating Championship from Stockholm...it's come a long way from Robin Cousins.  Supper was cheese biscuits with cream cheese, that will do me until tomorrow.....I've been fed already.  LN....It was a good catch-up.....LN

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Monday 29th March

Seven start, it looked like it could be a good day but despite the sun it's been a cold wind.  Coffee and back to bed, surfaced, washed and dressed by nine, toast for breakfast and waited for it to warm up before I headed outside,

First job was to clear up some of the debris from the Porch, I'd been saving lots of cheese pots and they'd just been dumped.  Now they're stacked and will collect the end of year seeds.  Various other pots have been put ready to burn along with several small plastic bottles that I shall never use and you ask yourself, why oh why do I collect them.

I had two objectives today...clear out the vegetable patch and dig it over and secondly to mow the main grass and I had to wait for the wind to dry it off a little before I did that.  There was lots of clover and chickweed in the vegetable patch and now there is none.  I did manage to find five weigela sticks that I'd stuck in when I pruned them back last year and they have new growth on them.  I'm not sure if they have roots, I'll see how they go.  I didn't plant anything, I'll rake it over tomorrow and put in beetroot, garlic and onion sets.  It's much too early for anything else. I sat out in the sun out of the wind and looked at the oleander that has been hard hit this winter.  According to Monty Don they can be pruned hard before the growing season starts and I'll blame him if I've killed the thing.  I've got about ten of last years plants that have spent the winter in the little house so I'm not short of them so they can go around the garden when it warms up a little.  At the moment everything stays in the little house, the last snow blast caught us out but at least everything was where it should be.  By three thirty I'd knocked off eleven thousand steps on the Fitbit and was praying for the mower to run out of petrol but instead I could feel my heart thumping away so I felt I'd done enough. I let the throttle go, picked up my hat where I'd dropped it because it kept falling over my eyes and put the mower back in it's under little house balcony, it's summer garage.  I've still more to do tomorrow if the weather is good.

In by four thirty, laid the fire and settled down to watch Netflix but there was nothing showing that interested me so I headed for the kitchen and prepared supper. Chicken and roasted veg for tonight and it should be ready around six thirty.  I saw the stork today on its flight path and unfortunately. I was outside and the camera was in...sod's law but now I've seen it once, it's back to its normal routine and I'll be waiting for it.  Nothing set in stone for tomorrow but I might find a market and get a few more plants, when the daffs go there's only tulips to take their place so I need more.  LN....Monday quiz night and maybe a bath just to ease away the aches that I think I might have after bending, weeding and digging.  LN....I'm getting to old for this.. ...LN



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Elsa Peters
March 30, 2021, 3:49pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 30th March

So it looked a very promising morning. The sun was a big red ball in the sky but the wind struck up at around ten thirty and that was the end of my sitting in the sun.

Washed and dressed by eight, decided not to go hunting for more plants, I've been caught out like that before when the weather suddenly changes and the temperature drops.  You can only store so many in the porch and little house.  I used the left over roast vegetables form last night and made an omelette for breakfast and it was very tasty and set me up until two this afternoon.  I had intentions of doing the rest of the grass but I was waiting for the wind to dry it off a little  so that it didn't clog up the mower so spent time having a bonfire and moving plants on to the terrace.  The cushion box came out but I didn't bother with cushions for the bench as I sat out in the sun drinking yet more coffee.  As the wind picked up I moved inside and settled myself on the sofa, still intending to finish the grass but the enthusiasm waned somewhat.  I was very close to nodding off but just managed to keep awake enough to make tuna mayo sandwiches for a late lunch and then settled in to a new series to me on Netflix.  I'm getting disappointed and only seem to be getting Bulgarian offers at the moment...I'll have to get Princess to recommend some for me.

At four I bit the bullet, put petrol in the mower and finished the main house grass and did part of the grass in front of the little house,  I'd gone out with hat and body warmer and I needed both...I was cold when I came in.  At the moment I haven't got any room for supper, I've eaten too much today.  The boiler is on, I need to linger in a Badedas bath tonight and my hair desperately needs washing.  So if it's good weather tomorrow but without that biting wind I'm strimming and clearing the weeds from the flower beds.  LN.....I hate it but it has to be done....LN



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Elsa Peters
March 31, 2021, 4:41pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 31st March

So I had my bath last night and just managed to save my Kindle from sharing the experience.  I was just at the sleep stage and the woke me up and a rapid reaction on my part scooped it on to the bathroom unit and towel.  Lucky old me...I should know by now that it's not a good idea but I was playing Sudoku until seconds before.  That put a stop to my snooze mood, I quickly washed down, fortunately I'd washed and rinsed my hair already and it was in a towel so into a bath towel and down to the fire grabbing PJ's on the way.  I brushed out my hair and it was fairly dry already so plaited it, snuggled down on the sofa and watched the end of some program or other and then went to bed.  I slept through until three thirty, turned over and went back until six thirty so not bad for me.  Coffee and back to bed for a while, up and out by eight and made poached eggs on toast to set myself up for the day and I was still in my pyjamas at ten so I though it was about time I launched myself into the world.  I had been out and put bread out for the birds but no takers, it was too cold for anything to be out.

My dream last night had been about a problem that I'm having with my ancestry.  One of the wills states that John named the grandchildren as his beneficiaries and the house was to go to his beloved daughter Alice and I can find no Alice in the family except that someone named John, who I'd dreamed could have been his son, may have married Alice so I fired up the computer to check it out and joy, oh joy, no internet and it was off for about three hours.  I phoned the engineer and he said that the electricity to the antenna had failed.  It's good to have phone number of the people that know.  I settled down with the documents and decided to go though old notes and realised that I'd done loads of research and it was more confusing and no issues resolved so I made a coffee and demolished a packet of biscuits and it was now getting of for one so that was lunch sorted.  The internet came back on but by this time I knew that it wasn't an easy one to solve so after an hour or so I shut the computer down and headed back to the lounge to watch Netflix and a Spanish murder mystery and five episodes later it was time to get supper underway, the fire and get myself into evening mode.

Supper should be ready in around twenty minutes.  As for working outside, no way Hose, it was far too cold for me to be out there, it was very deceptive.  The gust have been cruel with clouds whistling across the sky and there will be other day, I'm off life's treadmill.  LN....Kitchen and fire duties are calling me......LN



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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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