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Elsa Peters living a new life in Bulgaria  /  My Diary by Elsa Peters  /  APRIL 2012
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 1, 2012, 5:56am
Sunday 1st April

White rabbits and at least at this time of year you can see them but there was fresh snow on the Greek mountains so let's hope that's where it stays.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 1, 2012, 6:58pm; Reply: 1
Sunday continued

Lazy morning this morning....dug over one of the newly made beds from last year.  The forsythia has survived along with some of the tall yellow flowers and the grass and weeds have done exceptionally well :-/.  They have all gone now to the compost heap along with the cow droppings from Friday's encroachment.  Gap now filled in and the machine gun post has been reloaded.

The weather turned cold mid morning and I knew it was a day for getting the fire going and closing the door on the world.  The Parson's Daughter is now down to about eighty pages to go and I suddenly remembered that I had agreed to go into Kardjali with Gouljan for dinner but couldn't remember what time I had to pick her up so gave her a ring and brought it forward to five instead of six.  The heavens opened as we set off and looking at the huge puddles on the road it can't have stopped while we were in the restaurant.  Food was very good but I do wish they would hang the veal for a short time before they decided it is fit for table or for shoeing boots.....this could have been used for either.  Salad was very good and it is the first time that I have had tomatoes that were skinned in a salad.....I must say it made such a difference to the flavour.  It's a trick I might try when I make mine.  Stuck to the water and alcohol just don't mix....we fought over the bill and I won again.

Home for nine thirty my time...rain still raining and lots of little frogs leaping across the road as we drove back.  There's a hint of thunder and lightening on the far hillside so I've just drawn the curtains to keep it out and I'll be down to the fire in quicksticks tonight.  Livened it up when I got back but it had held up pretty well....LN.....I've just boiled the kettle and have the makings of a nightcap with a little might be an easy day tomorrow...if it rains I just can't see the men up on the roof....LN
Posted by: linda g, April 2, 2012, 6:37am; Reply: 2
Hi Elsa,
Looks like progress on house 2. Photo's are great. And hope the weather becomes better for work to be finished. Not much happening here, Mum ok, I have been sick with a head cold turned bronchitus cough, which has kept me off work for a few days. But getting better. Have an enjoyable Easter, and hope the bunnies leave u something nice, instead of eating all your foliage on their way

Take care. From us here in OZ... :P
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 2, 2012, 5:04pm; Reply: 3
Monday 2nd April

So Linda that accounts for all the jokes that you have been sending work for a few days 'recuperating'. ;) ;)  Get well soon and big hugs for mum and you all take care of each other.

What have they got up to today?  And me as well of course.  Slept really well last night and opened my eyes at seven twenty and out on the road by....well it was delayed.  There was frost on the car this morning with no hint of it last night.  I had to scrape it off before I could get going and then it was a good job that I did.  By the saw mill place there was a trailer across the road.  I wasn't really paying much attention at the time until I realised but I could just go off the road, miss it and safely reach the other side.  No warning triangles, nothing.

Men were eager to get here......they covered in the east wing of the roof and then got out that f** packet to alter the design of the dormer roof.  There were mutterings, Sally wasn't convinced, Bekir took a hammer to persuade him that it would work and so off they went.  Bekir did say to me that this morning they were playing and I believe they were.  I strung out my washing and decided that I could occupy myself in the garden taking in the scenic view of the roof without seemingly paying much attention to it.  Lunch came, lunch went, I continued digging over flower beds and planting out shrubs that I'd rooted in water and only started to pay attention when I saw Bekir standing on the top of the it was getting interesting.  I commented that I didn't realise that I had the Olympic Gymnastic team in training and Bekir said that he was 'like a monkey'.

Semile delivered three carrier bags full of meat for Bekir...he said that it was for his friend and they had their general chit-chat about the local government political parties.  They are at opposing ends of the spectrum but Bekir said that all the documents for his sheep are in order and he votes for Europe so that he should get all the grants going...Semile...well what can I say.....he's for the others.... ;) ;)  Bekir kindly gave me about a kilo of cow meat and it's in the fridge wanting attention...a job for tomorrow I think.

Roof looking good.  Tomorrow they have titivating to do.....and then on with the wood and hardboard.  Finally the bitumen and then we have a big hunt for second hand roof tiles.  I've got some, know where there are others but will definitely have to buy some.  Called in to see KingDom tonight.  They are off to Sofia tomorrow so I am on taxi duty and they fly out on Wednesday morning.  Sad bunnies and I'm going to miss them.

About to go to the kitchen and work out what I can put with already cooked leeks and potato to make a quick brain is being stretched at this point.  I'm sure I'll find something...not starved yet....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 3, 2012, 5:11pm; Reply: 4
Tuesday 3rd April

I am just too tired to write tonight.  It's been a long day.  I think I have covered more kilometers today than any other and it's been over the same roads. :-/

Picked up the men and brought them to work and coffee for three please.  Printed off the lesson for this afternoon for my student and at 11.30 set off to pick up Kingdom and Annie from their home and into Kardjali with their luggage and I could sense the despondency as they set off and it was nothing to do with my driving or that I took Beauty and not the Beast.  Dropped them at the bus station and then  on to Lidl for a few things namely a chain saw but they had sold out, back to Djebel for my student, got a phone call for another ten kilograms of nails and I just hope that they don't place a giant magnet over my house.  I could imaging them all going skywards and me left with a heap of wood and stone.  Since I was out for such a long time I left the kettle in full view with some instant 3 in 1 Nescafe and told them to make their own if they wanted it.  When I got back there were three cups so I reckoned they had been entertaining the sheep farmer and I was right.  I'm going to call this place Tree Tops Cafe, Bar and Restaurant a nice ring to it.

So lesson over, little bit of shopping in Djebel, went home, made another coffee and went down the garden with mine to see how they were doing long view.  The cherry tree needs to be shortened to get the complete picture but otherwise so far so good.  You've heard the response that it is 'our house' not 'my house' and they are building it as such.  Bought them some of the green plastic plant ties as a present and it sat on the back seat of the car.  I'm sure they didn't think it was theirs but taking them home I was invited into the restaurant and bar that they frequent when I drop them off so soda for me and beers for them followed by cheesy chips.  Now what could be nicer except for two plates of cheesy chips.

Finally to Djebel for fuel for tomorrow...yes I know...I should have thought about it before I left Djebel but the brain was not engaged.  Back home going, last night's leek and potato with the added ham is for supper and is now sitting on the wood burner awaiting attention.  I could invite the village in...there's loads of it apart from the fact that it's village is Muslim.

So it's goodnight from me and goodnight from ...well there is no one else.....LN....I have supper to see to, another drink to pour and a book that I realise I have read before but since I can't remember the end....I am still with it....LN
Posted by: MOS, April 4, 2012, 5:56am; Reply: 5
Hi Elsa
Well thats our summer over for another year its snowing here and sticking ime off to make a snowman big huggs G & H  ;)
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 4, 2012, 5:01pm; Reply: 6
Wednesday 4th April

So this morning I read for about an hour and got up at seven and appreciated the leisurely start.  Decided to do my emails before I left and realised that at seven thirty I was still not dressed so got a bit of a move on.  Locked the door whizzed onto the drive and discovered that the bit of concrete that was left over from the men working in the yard earlier in the year, was a greater hazard than I thought it to be.  Toe of clog catches rim of hump, body going faster that interrupted forward velocity of legs, you just know that you are going down but this time I had the sense to go down palms first not knuckles.  Ground was soft....I uttered words that my children don't think I know, picked myself up and swore that the concrete would be no more when I had picked up the men.  Knee has turned a slightly different colour...I don't hurt much but it sort of knocks the wind out of your sails as well as your lungs.  Arrived back in the yard, picks up hammer and it is no more.  Bekir did make a funny saying that I would probably fall down the slight depression the removal had made....I'll risk it.  :-/ :-/

Went to return my Avatar's yogurt bowl that I had forgotten about and had a little left over meat for Socks.  She was picking over her strawberry plants and getting them in and my other neighbour was out in the garden weeding.  She called me over and I helped her get the bundle of weeds on to her back and I thought she was taking them to the tip and unexpectedly she headed down the lane and dropped them in Star Mush's hedge. :-/  

Read my book this afternoon and finished the Paterson one about the flying children that I had read before but the details had forsaken another one at the ready but I was called up to the wreck to add detail to how big I wanted the overhang of the roof on the balcony.  Reminded them that it was our house and that they knew best and it's done and dusted. Only one short side of the roof to have hardboard on and then we're on to the bitumen and now it takes shape.  Next job to source more roof tiles since I want second hand not new to match the first house.

My neighbour came round later today and delivered some pumpkin ready cubed.  Now I'm not a great lover of the stuff so I took a little out of the bag but not only was she insistent that I had it all, she followed me into the kitchen, ordered me to get a saucepan out and the sugar and got it going on the gas.  I moved it on to the wood burner when I went to take the men home but I lifted the lid and gave it the nose test and it didn't pass so now it's back in the kitchen awaiting attention.

Supper is the remains of last nights which was the remains of the night before and I ask myself why do I make so much.  Men are not working tomorrow....they have 'winter documents' to get into Kirkovo for the animals but Sally went to great pains to tell me that they could work on Friday.  So down I go to tend the fire, get my supper, pour a glass of the red stuff (first today) and find a new book to read.....LN....I have things to do. ;) ;)
Posted by: createdbyme4you, April 4, 2012, 8:37pm; Reply: 7
Good to know your ok and the damage was limited  :o my what a good looking estate you got I'm not jealous really I'm not    ;)
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 5, 2012, 9:21am; Reply: 8
Thursday 5th April

Thank you for your kind comments Jackie and for your email.  

This morning I'm hurting.  Not the kind of hurt that 'hurts' but just hurts a bit if you know what I mean.  Aches from yesterday's downward dive that only appear the next day.  Having said men to make coffee for, a good book that I've got into quite quickly and this mornings treasured moment...I have a pair of hoopoes feeding in the garden. They are beautiful crested birds and were quite near the house at one point so I headed for the wreck to get nearer in my socked feet but disturbed them.  Now one bird is back and making its way up the garden but not near enough to get a good shot but I'm watching it now, with the camera at the ready before it's had it's fill of what it feeds on.  I'm going to post the picture I posted last year just so you can see how beautiful they are.

Student this afternoon....about to get a script and a couple of other things to do to keep his attention for one hour or so (well he is a teenager almost).  Having said that I might just watch my bird for a bit longer now that he's attacking my flower bed.

Posted by: Hwlffordd, April 5, 2012, 2:13pm; Reply: 9
The roof on the property is looking awesome and that large window has the most wonderful views :) (I wonder if you'd notice a squatter in there!!)

Might be back over in May to take a look at some places over Smoylan way!
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 5, 2012, 4:39pm; Reply: 10
Thursday continued

I think I just might notice Bob.... squatters would wish that they'd been prosecuted.  

Lessons over and done with for another week.  I managed to prepare three readings and I gave him the choice and I could almost hear his little brain computing a word count so that he got the one with the least in it.  We almost ended up doing and eeny, meeny, mineey on it, had fun with a Wordsearch at the end with both of us struggling to find the last one that was staring us in the face.  Nattered to his mother for a while in the shop, phoned Gouljan to see if she wanted a lift home but she was already on the bus, got some wood in and lit the fire to to add a little warmth to the house.  I could manage without but when you haven't got a tv, it's something to look at.... ;)

Forgot to mention that the water went off last night and it's amazing how your brain is programmed to just turn the tap.  I've got bottled water in the house so no problem but when you go onto automatic pilot and into switch off can't help it.  I'm running out of cups though so I'll have to make the effort of boiling up some bottled to wash up.  

Bekir has phoned...they are unable to work tomorrow he has even more documents to complete in Kirkovo. Poor thing...Bulgaria is emerging and sometimes systems change and not even the administrators know what's supposed to be done.  So another lie in tomorrow....I'll be getting a tad lazy. :-/ :-/...a whole chicken has gone into the oven so it's pickety witch for me tonight and maybe chips with for a good night unless it takes so long to cook that it's chicken and bread with a little of the red.  Let's see how things go....LN.....back to my book.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 6, 2012, 5:02pm; Reply: 11
Friday 6th April

Morning, morning and nothing to do today.  I was expecting a phone call from my librarian to say that they were legging it over but no call so I pottered in the garden for a couple of hours and got my book out getting fully entrenched in the latest novel.  The water came back on at about eleven this morning and was I pleased.  I'd already headed up to the spring and come back with twelve or so litres, had my first cup of coffee and emptied some of the water into the toilet cistern to flush away the debris.  Not enough and not wishing to go back to the spring water, thought that I could live with it so long as I didn't have guests but all fears were put aside when it came back on. :o :o

Still don't feel up to much....I think that Mad March has taken it's toll and April is going to be the month of recuperation.  Stretched out on my activity centre in the hall way in the morning sun, I was called to action as I said by my librarian arriving.  They had come on spec and had to take what was on offer in the kitchen since no forward preparation had been done.  Walked the estate...and even got her up the ladder to see the wreck from the second floor and the ladder proved a little intimidating since the rungs are a little far apart and even I have to stretch out between them.  I came down first and instructed her in the method of descent and all landings were successful.  She also hadn't realised that I had landscaped the side of the house and had raised beds...and she liked it.

So lunch was last night's cooked chicken, sauteed with mushrooms and onions served with pasta......they didn't let me know...they takes what's going.  We played around on their computer for a while, sat down with a box of chocolates that I shall never be tempted to buy again and off on their merry way at about five fifteen,  Lit the fire, last night's log is going for a second night with the addition of some small stuff and coal,  don't feel hungry having had a good meal at lunch time but at eight it's about time I poured the first red of the day.

So in for the night....and what a lovely calm night it is.  A few clouds are gathering overhead and to the west but we'll see what tomorrow brings.  LN.....I was supposed to be sorting out some seeds today so that can wait for's another day.... ;) ;)
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 7, 2012, 5:20am; Reply: 12
Saturday 7th April

Four jobs completed this morning that have been lingering for a while.  You know the sort that I mean.  Hall curtain now has all the hooks in place attaching it to the rings.  There was one missing and now there is none.  Washing finished and about to be hung out, honeysuckle and passion flower supports wired into place and seeds sorted for sowing.  Perhaps I should now head to bed for a rest.... ;)

Mist over the mountains this morning and there is a whiteness to the grass which I'm hoping is dew not frost although my fire was still going this morning and the pump kicked in at about six thirty so I think that's a bit of a record saying that it had only got yesterday's big log on with a little coal surrounding it.  Maybe that's the secret and it's taken me until spring to find out....dohhhh.

So to horse....nothing on the agenda for today so I have a blank canvas to work on....I shall report later.... ;)
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 8, 2012, 1:02pm; Reply: 13
Sunday 8th April

Busy in the garden today and full of energy.  Dug over my vege patches and planted up parsnips, red cabbage (how much?) two rows (especially for those who remember Victoria Woods), runner beans and leeks.  Not bad for someone who would never eat vegetables as a little one and drove my mother to distraction.  'This gravy has got onions in it' I would bellow.....I don't want it.'  I only ate new potatoes if they were small and as for 'greens' would only eat peas if they were processed and no other.  I was horrible and I bet she's watching me now and dad is chuckling his socks off.

It's going to be short and sweet tonight.  A thunderstorm has just made itself known with a few big claps so I'll be off then unless it's short lived.  I've also started off some sweet peas, honeydew melon and ornamental gourds so we'll be watching with interest won't we.

Another big bang from God with his clogs on....a Happy Easter to everyone....pretty quiet down here in my Muslim area....haven't seen an egg all day apart from in the kitchen....

Off's getting nearer....
Posted by: createdbyme4you, April 8, 2012, 2:26pm; Reply: 14
A Happy Easter to you Elsa
weather wise nothing for it but to batten down the hatch's with a drop of something  ;)
Posted by: MOS, April 8, 2012, 4:04pm; Reply: 15
Happy Easter Sugar
was that TWO RED CABBAGES . H is chucling wildely on the sofa ,i wont get any sence out of her all night now
See you soon G & H xx
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 9, 2012, 9:52am; Reply: 16
Monday 9th April

Ah well, the thunderstorm fizzled out by the time I woke up in the chair infront of the fire last night.  My supper was spaghetti bolognaise and delicious and obviously was soporific or was that the wine?  Never sure but went to bed and slept the sleep of the just until six this morning and nodded until six thirty and my phone went just before seven and overnight rain and this mornings drizzle has stopped play.....the men are not working today and if it's raining tomorrow, they won't be here either.  I was in the process of checking out the weather on the BBC weather site when the phone went.

This mornings breakfast was baked beans that I had made myself and dug out of the freezer.  So tonight....remains of beans, some of the bolognaise and a little chili powder and with a portion of sauce into the freezer for another day.  Now I feel organised.

Just had to chase the one bloody cow that insists that the grass is greener in my garden than on the rest of the hillside.  She jumps in from the higher ground and really struggled to get out having to climb over the guttering that I've strung up in the hedge line.  I had the intention of getting out the barbed wire and wrapping it round the fence posts and the trees but it was so cold out there that I came back in and settled down in front of the fire.  Now to check the seeds and I might even complete Fort Knox to keep that beauty out.... where's that winter sweater.....I think it's back again.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 9, 2012, 2:05pm; Reply: 17
Monday continued

I'm scratched to had to be done...two in the garden.  The one knew how to get out...the other didn't so a little gentle persuasion with a half a house brick and a lot of noise made its mind up that it was safer out than in.  It didn't do it very elegantly but buggers can't be chooses and that's not a typo.  So two out and my original was heading in the general direction.  I was in the field the other side of my fence and just hoping that it  wasn't going to make a late charge....ha let it try it. The barbed wire is in place and secured with more wire.  It's attached to the trees in the garden, a bit more fencing and there are three rows so I hope their eyesight is good or I might just hear the screams as they are impaled.  I better empty the freezer ready.  The fence doesn't look pretty...but it looks effective and might just do the job of keeping those cows out. :-/ :-/

Five o'clock my time....the weather has cleared a little but as I said, it's pretty cold today and it's almost tempting to go back to the Bulgarian vest that was discarded last week.  Now here's a funny.  Casting a clout until May is I always thought it was the month of May and I was informed recently that it is May blossom...learn something new every day and never too old to learn.  

Al Murray on the radio on BBC2 and I'm listening to the traffic chaos on the motorways.....I really don't miss it.  Coffee calls.....early supper and I've started a new book so I know what I'll be doing tonight.
Posted by: scarahfluff, April 9, 2012, 2:48pm; Reply: 18
Hope you had a nice Easter Elsa! Sounds like you have sorted the cows at last, mind you, the house brick sounded as bad as the barbed wire.   I could just picture you sitting on the freezer trying to get the lid to close. Take care and enjoy your book. x
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 10, 2012, 6:36pm; Reply: 19
Tuesday 10th April

Cold this morning but at least the rain didn't stop play.  The men set themselves up in the workshop but moved all of the wood to the upper floor and built the walls for the upstairs terrace.  It's beginning to look like a house.

Did my student this afternoon and I think he was demob happy.  I didn't get a lot of sense out of him and he was in a very amusing mood.  He serenaded me with an harmonica, sang to me, told me about his favourite pop music but refused to tell me the name of his girlfriend. The finale was an attempt at an Indian head massage using a piece of kit that they had purchased on one of the shopping expeditions.  

Took the men homewards and we stopped off to try to obtain roof tiles since I don't have enough to finish it of my own.  Several houses in Samodiva and managed to find some in the men's village so now we have to arrange transport.  The price is right to the deal is on.

Went to my restaurant tonight and sat down to supper with the owner and the family.  A huge Moussaka was shared but I was criticised for not eating enough.  Played with the little girl with her plasticine and then homeward bound.  Fire was going but very low when I got home...bed's gone pretty chilly tonight and the weather report is for minus slight frost.

LN....going for my first drink of the evening....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 11, 2012, 4:39pm; Reply: 20
Wednesday 11th April

White over again and magical morning with the sun shielded by the mist holding over the river in the valley.  So over to pick up the men and on the way back we had a discussion about the roof tiles.  One man wanted to sell, the other did but at an inflated price and it is quite a distance from the men's village to mine by tractor.  There were more in a village that is nearer so we stopped off and found the man but he wants his to do his cow shed and coming back into the village I had seen some that had been stripped off the roof and were now stored in the loft.  Bekir found the man and he wasn't sure if he wanted to sell them and they were the wrong colour, and he thought that it wouldn't match very well with the existing ones on this roof.  The decision was made.  With a few from here and a few from there if we weren't careful we could end up with the biggest mishmash of tiles in the village.  Tomorrow we go and get new ones and they will be delivered and no messing with tractors, lorries, negotiating prices and the likes....I just can't be arsed.

My librarian arrived at just after twelve and we headed out to Momchilgrad to have a look at my little house up with the eagles and there was one soaring over it when we got there.  It still exists and I decided that since we were in the town I should pay the outstanding tax on the house, like three years outstanding and the man asked if I wanted to pay all of it.  The total...eighty one leva but Bekir said that I should ask for a refund when he looked at the paper work.  I had been charged for rubbish clearance and since I hadn't ever lived there and in fact there is no one living in the deserted village I had been grossly overcharged and he suggests that I go back in a month or so and query the charges.  Had lunch in town and picked up a lovely pure white azalea and it's stunning.  Masses of flowers and flower buds on it so it should go on for quite some time.  

Men appeared to have a joyful time on the roof and most of the bitumen is in place now and the battening.  Tomorrow should see the end of it and then the tiles can start.  I have one more crew member joining in apparently.  It will make the tiling quicker when there is one fetching and carrying and two banging them home so to speak.  So Semile up on my roof again and I really must give him a bill for the coffee he consumes when I'm away from home.....I think the sign of Tree-Tops Kaf has to go up.... ;) ;)

Round the garden with the camera.....lots of shrubs starting to do their stuff and some that I had thought I'd lost since it has been such a hard winter have started to show signs of life.  Beautiful day today and beautiful time of year but it's gone cold now so the fire's supper tonight...still stuffed from book....the last one...they got married and she died five days later of her brain nobody lived happily ever after in that one :-/ :-/....LN....drinky time...
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 12, 2012, 5:01pm; Reply: 21
Thursday 12th April

Woke up at silly o'clock, read for a while and went up to the pc to get a start on the day.  Dawn this morning was blazing sun, grey clouds intermingled with the pale pink hue and so it had to be captured.  It's been a cold wind today but out of the sun it has been superb and we've had our share of fun.  Off to the builders' merchants this morning and the roof tiles have been ordered and would have been on their way for today but he has two lorries that haven't got one good engine between them.  I don't know if you remember but we had problems with the last delivery but instead of me having to have two guys hanging around for when they arrive, this time the lorry comes with two men that are there to help unload it.  My sheep farmer offered to be there but I said 'when'...'where' and 'how do I let you know".  Two men arriving with the wagon means that we have instant access to labour and at fifteen pounds...I can stand the loss.

Now as for the fun.  You know that I have been saying that this place turns into a cafe the minute my back is I put up a sign for 'Tree Tops Cafe' and 'Patronka'...owner of the Bulgarian.  I forgot to add the price list and that certain people would be treated as 'special' but others would pay Euros for the privilege.   No tables, no chairs that will come but the local wine man saw the sign tonight and I had visions of him appearing and demanding coffee and rakia....arrgggg...perhaps I should take it down.

Delivered a violet to my Avatar today and the smell was wonderful.  Told her it was a present so my other neighbour asked where hers was so I had to skip back to my stream bed outside my wall and pick one for her.  The sheep farmer was around most of the lunchtime today, fixed an outside tap for my Avatar that I provided from my 'shop' and we sat around in the sun chewing the fat so to speak.  My water meter was read next bill is just over four leva....a couple of pounds for the month and I have been asked if I will take some more students and it's over the weekend which will be fine.

So supper cooking.  One spicey sausage with onions, honey, chilli, tomato, red wine and rice over the wood burner and it should be ready when I am.  Found a new wine yesterday which is two leva forty for two litres....not bad and like most cheap wines, first one don't notice the rest.  Now I can smell my supper so I'm going to leg it downstairs and my glass is requiring a refill.  'and don't stop me now....I'm having such a good time'.....and you surely know the rest....LN....busy day tomorrow.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 13, 2012, 4:55pm; Reply: 22
Friday 13th April

Woke at fourish this morning...went on the internet, back to bed and read for a while, settled down to go to sleep and had the most vivid dream where I was driving a car to a dead end and it was on a hill so I abandoned it, lost my wallet and then found it again, drove down another road where I really had to go off road, met up with old girlfriends and told them of my web address.  All that in the space of about one hour.  Quickest my brain has worked in a long time. ;) ;)

Didn't really describe the hazardous journey yesterday when I took the men home.  The steering felt very light and either there was a problem with the tyres or my head had gone squiffy.  When I dropped the men off, I seemed to have more control and reckoned that  their weight in the back must have meant less contact with the road so on the way home it seemed to be better.  Kicked both rear tyres last night and guessed punctures in both and since I couldn't be arsed last night came out this morning and yes, you're probably there before me, both rear tyres as flat as proverbial pancakes.  Got the foot pump out, stuck twenty in each, got the Beast going and picked up the men in luxury.  Got back to the house via the builder's merchants and Djebel and both tyres were still up but the winter tyres had to go and new summer ones bought.  Off to the garage after lunch and stated my requirements and had four new air valves and tyres fitted.  The rear winter ones had two punctures in one and a screw in the wonder I had no control.  So winter ones being stored at the garage and the new ones which is obviously a harder compound should see me through the summer in safety.

Men have finished the bitumen on the roof and they say that it's OK if there is snow tomorrow.  They spent the rest of the afternoon sorting out the upstairs terrace and so far I have not been there to have a look.....that's a job for tomorrow.  Chicken and Hasselback potatoes with roasted carrots and onions and red cabbage and if any body asks me how much I shall say two spoonfuls, are already on their way.  The wine is open, I have a box of cherry liqueurs for afterwards and I'm really looking forward to supper tonight.  It's Easter here this weekend so those eggs I looked for last weekend should make an appearance this.  Post Offices and government departments are closed but the rest of the world goes on its normal way.

Down I go to my lower level, the fire is going, supper is almost there and it's time I topped up my glass.  Can't drink too much though...I think I have two new students tomorrow...not sure it's either tomorrow or Sunday and it's a fairly fluid arrangement...bit like being here really.  I mentioned to Bekir and Sally that I'm going to have 'Tree Tops School' written on the other side of my cafe board and I'll display the most appropriate.... ;) ;) supper calls.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 14, 2012, 4:50am; Reply: 23
Saturday 14th April

There's a gale a blowing in them there hills and thank goodness the bitumen is held into place with very strong glue, flat headed nails and battens otherwise it wouldn't have survived the night.  It was also raining overnight which is good for the seeds and cleans the windows beautifully.  My stork wind chime started at silly o'clock and woke me up...maybe I should have brought it in the house last night so long that it was out of a draught.  Not a gardening day for indoor pursuits so my outdoor hanging chair is coming in for repair. Might have found a new place for it upstairs in the 'not so much a wreck as it was'.... ;) ;)

There's a glimmer of sun between the dark clouds scudding across the sky...maybe a chance that it might clear up. :-/ :-/
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 14, 2012, 5:42pm; Reply: 24
Saturday continued

Nobody turned up so my school sign remained undisplayed to the world....well Dushinkovo at least.  

The weather has been up and down all day...but shock horror...two cows decided to run the wrath of the barbed wire and didn't they have a job getting out.  The second one sat in the ridge between the fence and the bank and I thought that we had a casualty on our hands, so much so that I'd started to empty the freezer to get it in.  Unfortunately the thing got up and limped away.  The hedge is now reinforced with four by four timber and they just stood in the field looking at it.  B*st*rds.

So the rest of the day has been spent inside and I have been laminating some of the scripts that I use for my student and re-engineering the questions so that they take up a single page. It's going OK and radio two has been keeping me company.  I also decided to clear down my laptop of those programs that have been rarely used and defragged is so much quicker.  As it stands I don't have Word on my big machine so it's easier to use my laptop for word stuff.  Works is so much a slimmed down version and frustrates me something rotten.

Lovely rainbow this afternoon...I almost got the shovel out but it was too far to go to be disappointed again.  
Supper tonight cold chicken and a chunk of bread with a drop of the red stuff.  I didn't feel like cooking and this was available.  Eight forty my time, put a huge log on the fire this afternoon and it's about time I gave it a bit of attention...LN....down the stairs I go....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 15, 2012, 3:37pm; Reply: 25
Sunday 15th April

Managed to sleep in until six forty this morning which is good for me,  Sat out on the terrace with my toast and coffee and absorbed the morning.  Sunny day and the wind was a little brisk so decided that it was a good day for getting some washing underway.  Only one load, I keep on top of it pretty well and after all, there is only me.

Worked on my old laptop and is it speedier and still working so I couldn't have deleted anything that was too crucial.  Finished several sets of question to go with the laminated readings. ...but again no one turned up but just as well.  I worked in the garden clearing some of the clover from around the vegetable patch and used the shears to remove it from the top garden.  I could really do with a few sheep but they don't seem to stay in one place and definitely no more stray cows.

So working away and thought....washing....and carried on working and thought washing again.  You know what it's like and it took about three attempts before I managed to get it on the line but now all is safely gathered in, dry, smelling sweetly and off the list.

Came in for a late lunch and got out the cold chicken and thought of having it with mayonnaise but then the taste buds and the imagination took over and the chip pan came out. Three potatoes peeled and chipped and so late lunch became an early supper.  Stuffed like the turkey at Christmas and settling in to a little of the vodka and tonic to help it through the alimentary canal.  

Six thirty my pictures tonight....listening to Johnny Walker on BBC 2 so now going back downstairs and back to the book that I'm reading under sufferance.  You know the's almost as if it's padded out with too much detail and insulting to read.  Problem is there are three books in one cover and one down and one and a half to go.....just curious about the ending......I'll update you.  LN.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 16, 2012, 6:16pm; Reply: 26
Monday 16th April

And am I late tonight....stopped off at a friends in the village where my men get delivered home and caught up with the gossip.....well all that about other people...didn't hear much about me.

Six thirty this morning but last night's chicken didn't sit too well and I think I spent most time in the loo and not in my bed.  Too much information maybe but sh*t happens so they say....Decided that there was no real need to rush about and so took it leisurely until I had ten minutes to wash and dress and then twenty minutes to get to the men.  I arrived just as the news pips were going and I thought that was brilliant timing.  

They set to work on the upstairs terrace, digging out the concrete roof to take the supports and I suddenly realised that the hammer drill was not hammering and there was a frantic cuffuffle upstairs to the tools department in my house and back to the not so wreck.  Delivered coffee just so that I could investigate and there is Bekir covered in grease with various parts of the hammer drill scattered around.  Apparently it was going but not hammering.  Now at a quick calculation of the daily rate and getting rid of the concrete by hand....I decided that a trip to Djebel might be fortuitous and a new one purchased in quick sticks and one hour later, I have a new guarantee and Sally is 'hammering away'.  I did say that Bekir could probably continue with the reassembly at a later date but I think he wanted to get all the screws back in place.  It is now to be used for spares.  We had a lovely time in Djebel together...lots of Bekir's friends didn't understand where he had got the 'Englishwoman' from.  Caught up with Semile and Jaylan and we were invited for coffee which I refused saying that it we didn't get back, Sally couldn't hammer and so no work would be done.  Bekir did buy a cow's head for ten leva from Jaylan and this remained in the wreck until we went home.  It was the way that its tongue hung out that put me off.  I also asked him for a Barnsley chop but they only had half a lamb hanging up so I have to take a picture in so that they know what I am talking about.  Same with most things really..... ;) ;)

So this afternoon I looked at my hanging chair in the garden and catching Bekir hauling the ladder in that general direction I got him to get it down for me.  Job's a guddun.....chair repaired and is now back in place in the cherry tree.  It so happened that I saw this material for seven leva in my favourite shop and I have still loads to spare so what else can I cover?

Men have taken up metal work and yet again so that even the heaviest of my guests can go out onto the upstairs terrace of the 'not so wreck'.  Iron work is all in place and shuttering and tomorrow they do the deed.  Roof tiles should be arriving tomorrow, that's if he gets his lorries on the road again, otherwise they have enough to occupy themselves with.

Dropped the men off and they were late tonight wanting to leave it ready for the concrete tomorrow.  Called in on a friend in their village as I said and I haven't see the girls for about a year now and they commented on how svelt I looked having shed a couple of stone.  In the hardware shop today I did get on the scales and I was offered to the rest of the customers for five leva a kilo....I have yet to work out if I was insulted or not.... :-/ :-/

So still going and my house is super warm.....had tuna mayo for lunch so not really in the mood for anything else so I'll give it a miss after yesterday.  A little red my just see me through...LN....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 17, 2012, 6:59am; Reply: 27
Tuesday 17th April

The concrete is being mixed as we speak so's raining.  Sod's law.....concrete equals rain in our books so it should be nice for the rest of the week.  As I wrote that I remembered my English teacher at school that always put down the word 'nice' as being non-descriptive......'there are lots more in the dictionary that mean something' she would say and consequently it's not one that I use very often.  So for the rest of the week it should be hot, wonderful, sunny, pleasant....any of the aforesaid..... ;) ;)

Now let me prepare for my student....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 17, 2012, 6:09pm; Reply: 28
Tuesday continued

Beautiful day....My student was as tired as ever and so it was with great aplomb that I eventually brought him round to my way of thinking.... ;) ;)

Got home from Djebel at about five and found the men lost for work...the balcony was covered in concrete but they had been told that the wagon with the tiles would be arriving in about an hour which turned into about one and a half hours.  As luck happened, the two youths dispatched to unload the wagon did it all by themselves.  Sally decided that he wanted to unload some of them to make himself useful but Bekir was quite natural at supervising, recounting my cash to make sure that we hadn't over paid and generally seeing in the delivery.  So we managed to get sixty one leva and fifty stotinki off the bill because they hadn't delivered the said amount and when it came to final settlement I said to Bekir that I owed one hundred leva to which he replied that I owed ninety eight leva and eighty stotinki....all for me and one for all.  We are like the three Muscateers...Bekir, Sally and EP. ;) ;)

The infidels unloaded the lorry in quicksticks and Ysat charged them out at thirty leva....I wonder how much they received but I said that if they wanted to work here...they could.

So tonight on my way back to take the men Bekir insisted that I came to a halt beside a rubbish trip and he leaped out of the car, disappeared into the undergrowth and came back with a vause, vase or whatever you like to call it that he had spotted on our way into the village.  I love it.  It's damaged on the lip but who cares...certainly not me....I treasure all things old.  It is now washed, sitting in my lounge and awaiting for ornaments.

Back delivered, concreting done and there will be pictures tomorrow.  Tonight's supper...chicken livers cooked with onions, honey and tomato paste and served with pasta.  It was absolutely delicious and all that was needed was a touch of mushroom soya sauce on the pasta.  A little of the red...went down a treat.

Arrangement with the men...if it is raining tomorrow they are not working and the forecast is rain with thunderstorms which doesn't bode well with working on the it's goodnight from me....I have washing up to do and a glass to fill.....LN....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 18, 2012, 4:54pm; Reply: 29
Wednesday 18th April

What sad miserable weather it's been today.  I thought I had made the wrong decision this morning when it got to seven thirty and I'd decided not to go for the men.  The sun started to glimmer but as the morning rolled out the sun was soon hidden from view and rain started to fall....and it's hardly stopped all day.  It was cold too and I decided to light the fire this morning but only to have a little one going and how long did that go on for.  So I lit it again at lunchtime and then left it to its own devices and made another attempt at it at about five thirty and after much effort, I now have a super large log on it and it's burning away slowly.

Took the remains of the chicken that was no longer fit for human consumption to Tommy this morning and I think he might have reckoned it was Christmas....well not Christmas...he's a Muslim dog.  My other neighbour gave me a bunch of spring onions already washed and prepared so maybe it was my day.

The rest of the day I have played games on the computer, read my book and listened to Radio 2.  I suppose I could have got on with some sewing or knitting but the weather seems to take it out of you.  We get mostly good days in April but at least the threatened thunder and lightening didn't happen.

I've just heated and finished the remains of last night's chicken livers and pasta and I think it was better for having spent the night in the fridge.  Found a new drink.  Dark rum with a few coffee granules in it and topped up with hot water.... Almost eight my time....back to my book and down to enjoy the rest of the fire and my new drink...LN...let's hope it's a better day tomorrow weatherwise....and the roof tiles can start going on......big please....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 19, 2012, 6:06pm; Reply: 30
Thursday 19th April

Six thirty wake up and checked on the weather as to whether the men would be out of their beds or not.  Looked OK, no hint of rain although the mist was clinging to the valleys but off I went and there they were, waiting for me in the cafe.

Back home.....activity today was to put the battening down so that they could get the roof tiles on and jobs a guddun so to speak....they will go on tomorrow and hopefully there will be a third person that again hopefully will not be me getting the tiles skywards so that they can lay them.  I went out and got in another six kilograms of six milemeter since I am told that the roof has a little more slant on it than is normally the case since I wanted more headroom and now I pay the cost me six pounds.

So this morning was quite fun.  There was a lot of motorbike, or 'excuse for one' noise going on and my lovely friend Semile was out with his Simpson.  Bekir is the expert on this machine since he has one so Bekir took it for a spin to identify the problem with it.  It kept cutting out apparently and I thought no petrol but the expert reckoned that there was either oil in the petrol or it needed some.  It was somehow lost in translation.  So when he got back, I sat on the bile.  As he was ready to leave I straddled the machine and off we went for a spin down the village.  I waved to all my 'getting on' neighbours so my name must be mud that the Anglechanka was on the back of the motorbike.  I explained to Semile that a friend had a BMW in the UK and we toured Europe on it so the Simpson was just a taster.  Off he went and during the day Bekir had several phone calls asking what he had done to the bike since it no longer worked and the last we saw of him was from the roof when he was 'walking his baby back home'.

Off to my student this afternoon, went to get the nails, off to my Leva shop and got a beautiful large plate for one leva and an ashtray so that my ashtray shoe is not in danger of getting broken when it comes to smoking outside...not for me, may I add.  My visitors.

Took the men home and decided that I would need more fuel so straight off to Djebel just in case I had a 'cash on the nail' worker tomorrow.  Supper was spicy sausage, spring onions, mushrooms and potato chunks sauteed with tomato paste, honey, chilli and ginger and how delicious was that served with chunky bread.  New red wine opened and I just hope the motto isn't 'I've started so I'll finish'.  It would be sacrilege.

Nine my time so it's almost time to get my little head on the pillow.  Morning comes round very quickly.  LN....the second book in the trilogy is better that the first and it almost brought a tear to my eye....well almost. glass not the bottle is empty, Bernstein is playing away and all is well with my little world.....LN
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 19, 2012, 6:11pm; Reply: 31
Thursday continued

Forgot to post this / these.....I do hope they are back tomorrow.... :-/ :-/

Posted by: MikeyB, April 19, 2012, 8:04pm; Reply: 32
Wow it's looking fantastic EP!  8)

What are you doing with the bit nearest the house on the last picture?
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 20, 2012, 7:39am; Reply: 33
Quoted from MikeyB
Wow it's looking fantastic EP!  8)

What are you doing with the bit nearest the house on the last picture?

Most of that wall is coming down at least to window sill height.  The inside is going to be a patio or a walled garden.  In the hall way....two big windows and a the lounge.  The old fireplace I have kept, the door to the porch is being moved so it faces my entrance door and should be stone faced that's if Sally has any energy left.... ;)

Three men into battle today.  We dug the mayor's nephew out of bed this morning at eight thirty and offered him a couple of days....and he was here in quick sticks.  His job, and he did choose to accept it, was to get all of the tiles up onto the roof of the porch and he's doing a 'Sterling". no, nay sterling.....Leva it's put on the pinny time and play hostess with the ...guess the rest.

Bekir phoned Semile to ask if he wanted to be a good neighbour and help out but he said that unfortunately, he was otherwise engaged....that old chestnut.... :-/ :-/
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 21, 2012, 8:18am; Reply: 34
Saturday 21st April

Sorry now update last was one of the time I'd taken the men the time I'd cooked the time I'd had a couple of was time I went to bed.  I think yestrerday was a busy day all round and I felt knacked. :-/ :-/

So what did they achieve yesterday?  New boy on the block worked out well.  He's done a couple of days here before but useful to have around when you need three instead of two.  Men have done loads of work on the roof and it looks good coming down the hill towards the house.  I was a little disappointed with the tiles.  They're new so I've left instructions that they are to rub a little soot on them while they're up there but in a couple of years or so, I wont even notice I'm sure.  Had to make a trip into Djebel to get a giant sanding disk for cutting the tiles where they meet on the ridges and the valleys...I suppose I forgot all about that stage in the's been so long ago since they did this roof.  Have to make another trip in though to get four more of the beauties so that work can go full speed ahead on permitting.

And for this morning's update.  First things first.  Shower and hair washed and decided to strip the bed down.  It might be time to get rid of the nest and put the summer bedding on.  I need a new mattress for my upstairs bedroom, my original is in the guest room and it seems a pity to take that apart again. Three loads of washing blowing in the breeze and I sat out in the swinging chair and listened to the cuckoo singing its little heart out.  Now we have the noisy chatter of magpies.....there are four of them wafting backwards and forwards in the garden.  Sorted out my appears to have been compromised....what pleasure do they get out of screwing up something that is not hurting them at all. :-/ :-/

On today's list I have onion sets and beetroot seeds to go in.  I had given some hollyhocks yesterday to those need to be found a new home and I'm going to liberally sprinkle seeds on bits of newly dug over flower beds and see what comes up.  Trouble is at this time of year there are so many weeds coming up that you can't tell what's what until they get bigger.  My newly sown sweet-peas are breaking through already so one to chalk up.

Must get on....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 21, 2012, 4:54pm; Reply: 35
Saturday continued

So what did I do?  Onions in, beetroot seeds in and rest of the bed dug over, flowers in, washing in...just before the thunder and lightening started and the rains came down.  And oh, didn't it rain.  Trouble is that the thunder seems to get trapped and it rolls around for a long time.  There were some pretty impressive cracks.  I reckon it's all the fault of the NATO high flyers that have been around for the last couple of days.  There was a mighty boom from one of them and at one point I had the 'home guard' standing to attention when they flew over and where's that camera when it's needed.

Noticed this afternoon that I have lots of seed heads on my freesias and also I have baby corms growing on one of them....never seen it before so I must check out the tinternet to see what that's all about. :-/

Funny sort of light now...hint of setting sun giving everything a murky look and it's still raining.  The nest has gone back went so cold this afternoon so on with a big log and supper is over and done with already.  It's a night for curling up with a good book talking of which.....I might be on for the library tomorrow....I'm on my last.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 22, 2012, 4:26pm; Reply: 36
Sunday 22nd April

Day of rest.....why is it that when you can sleep in you are wide awake at silly o'clock so it was back to the nest with a coffee and a good book.  I decided it was time to get up, looked at the clock and it was only seven of it but decided that I couldn't lie in there for any longer so sat down and read for a little longer with more coffee at my elbow.

Went out, surveyed the estate and decided that it was much warmer inside despite the sun.  Came back inside but I was restless so decided to move all of the plants that have been wintering upstairs for their first taste of spring and gave them a good watering.  It's here boys, start flowering.  Just hope it's no too much of a shock.  Sorted out a heap of material left over from the last sew-in and cut out another quilt cover as a spare for my bedroom.  The sewing machine might even come out tomorrow.  I was tempted to start doing a little more wood work but I think I'll leave it until the wood has dried out a little and I'll pick the straightest lengths.  Decided breakfast was on the cards so made a sausage and onion omelette to keep the wolf from the door and sat out in the sun to eat it.  Sorted out the kitchen, decided it was time to get some seeds in the garden, dig over a few more beds and get rid of a few more weeds.  

Now you know that cow that jumps over the stray beauty found its way in and really did struggle to get out.  It had come in behind the outside toilet but getting in was obviously easier than getting out.  It got it's leg stuck in the fence and I'm hoping that that is enough deterrent otherwise I'm out with the barbed wire tomorrow.  It's the only bit that doesn't have any.... persistent little buggers. :-/ :-/

Seven twenty my time...lovely evening although I'm thinking that I might have to do a little's when you come to sit at night that the fire is always welcoming.  Decided against the library today....just meandered in the garden instead...LN....remains of tuna mayo on toast for tonight....I think breakfast did the trick....just  a few pickies of my day....and last night's wonderful skies.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 23, 2012, 6:07pm; Reply: 37
Monday 23rd April

Quick update connection is 'Poor' and I don't want to risk the wrath of the gods and spend lots of time on here.

Early start and my library is completely digested and I didn't manage to get any more books today...I was far too busy in the garden.  My flower beds are all dug over as is my veg patch and I've now realised the error of my ways.  I didn't make a plan of what I put in where and it's all coming up and I haven't a clue....I know there's red cabbage, leeks, parsnips and green beans so I'll just have to wait a little longer until I can identify them.  At least I know where I put the beetroot and the onions. ;) ;) ;)

Sorted out lots of weedy areas....I seem to have a lot of clover which I know is good for the garden but it does seem to dominate.  I could do with a cow on a lead but not many of those around.

Men busy on the roof and I've been a little lax today with the waitress service.  We were back late from the builder's yard and it all went haywire after that.  They were hauling roof tiles up two at a time and I though it looked like Bekir was fishing so I drew a fish on a piece of card and got Sally to attach it to the next set of bricks heading skywards....caused a bit of a laugh. ;) ;)

Breakfast was a chocolate biscuit courtesy of the men, lunch was a slice of chocolate cake and supper was fish fingers and chips with lashings of tomato ketchup.  Went in the freezer to see what caught my eye and they sort of jumped out at me.  They have been putting the metal work into the roof in the valleys and sticking up some guttering.  Guess what...the lorry has broken down yet again so my delivery for tomorrow might be delayed until Wednesday or even Thursday since there are no roof tiles in the yard and they have to come from Turkey.

So as I said, supper is over and was delicious.....listening to Lenny Kravitz at full volume and wont be too late heading for the nest tonight....LN....I'm almost on my way....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 24, 2012, 5:51pm; Reply: 38
Tuesday 24th April

Lazy Anglechanka...slept in until 6.50 and had had one of those beautiful dreams that you don't want to come out of...don't ask me....don't know but to wake up with that lovely feeling.   Bliss.

Two cups of coffee.  Played on the DS until the time that I realised that I would be late for the men but took time out to dig up a root of Lavender and deposit it at Pepe's door this morning.  Back with the men....they bought me my breakfast of local soft bread with soft cheese in it so I complained to them that I still hadn't found the cheese...but neither had they.  I don't know what the recipe mix is but believe me it's pretty poor or someone. somewhere is having everyone else's share..... :-/ :-/ :-/

Pottered in the garden and got out the scythe to clear some of the foliage.  Sally reckoned Roundup was the solution and I think he is right but I need something to occupy my time.  Dug out some more texts for my student this afternoon and when I arrived we had the 'I can't find my homework, my brother must have destroyed it'.  So I said...give me the's OK but I got no further so I decided to move on to the lesson.  He was quite impressed...the lesson today was smaller but lots more questions that we had to discuss.  I think he's coming on in leaps and bounds and I realised a long time ago that I have to treat him like my have to make it fun or the attention wavers.  We did an exercise on verbs but he was far more interested in telling me about the medal he had won that morning for being able to unfurl a fireman's hose, get through an obstacle course and come out at the other end intact and before anyone else.

So home James...lot of noise from the yard and I realised that the local 'man who likes his drink' had had his fill and was pestering the men.  He tried it on with me and I told him... slowly, slowly and that my ears worked so he had no need to shout.  Prepared my supper before I took the men home so by the time I got back my chicken curry was 'perfick' and my rice done to a tee.

Stuffed to the gills, red on the go and it's a new one at just over two leva for two litres....and only 10% so not so damaging to the kidneys so I think that it's a bargain.  They have even called it Merlot...... going well...all's well with my world so LN....catch you tomorrow....
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 25, 2012, 5:14pm; Reply: 39
Wednesday 25th April

What a day!!!!

Early start like silly o'clock and had a rush on to get the men on own fault...I was playing Freecell and I had one that wouldn't come out for love nor money.

Picked up the men and was conscious that I was going to be at the library for the rest of the day so provisioned them with lots of coffee that they could make for themselves and the kettle and prepared to leave at ten thirty ish.

Arrived and was made welcome.  I returned the books that were digested and delivered a half bottle of the newly found cheap plonk (two litres for two leva forty) for them to savour and make a decision on.  The beauty is that it's only 10% alcohol so you can drink more and not get that's the theory.

Got there and sat out in the sun, collected lots of free plants for my garden, raided the library and I heard that one of the librarians was taking three of the locals to visit a friend in Zlatograd.  It's one of the border  towns with Greece and not one that I go to often since it's a bit of a trek but since they were going anyway I left my car in their village and headed down country.  Because there were four locals visiting the hospital I offered to sit in the back of the Surf on a couple of bags of cement and rode the potholes well.  The ladies went off to do their visiting, the librarian and myself shopped till we's drop and I bought half of the plants that were on offer and so much so that I thing that the shop owner thought it was all her Christmases come at the same time.  Time marched on...the ladies had gone to the hospital...but I was now concerned about my workers and how they were going to get home if I wasn't home at the allotted hour. We phoned the response from the phone...they had gone AWOL....and at this point my brain had kicked in.  I needed a taxi if I was going to make the journey back so one was located....complete with petunias and broom purchased in Djebel ...I made the journey back to the library and back to my house by six p.m.  

At six twenty Bekir and Sally had visitors from Turkey and they were delighted to escort and do the conducted tour of their last two years work.  They are so proud of their achievements that it makes me proud of their achievements if you get my drift.  The upshot was....they got a lift back to their village with their relatives and I could settle into a good book and the wine sooner....result.

Popped round to see my Avatar...she has a new calf and ten new chicks and offered me some of them.  I told her that she was to keep on breeding and I would just take the eggs...seems fair to me.  As for the calf...I told her...three months ,,,,freezer. :-/

Home going...don't want food since I managed to woof down a potato filo pasty thing in Zlatograd and if could be days before the need to eat strikes again...It looks rather like Kew Gardens outside my front door and tomorrow I have to be busy getting them planted.....

LN...tout le mond....I am now into the last book of Boadicea borrowed from my library and a drop of the red stuff.
I have things to do.... ;) ;)
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 25, 2012, 5:15pm; Reply: 40
Wednesday 25th April

What a day!!!!

Early start like silly o'clock and had a rush on to get the men on own fault...I was playing Freecell and I had one that wouldn't come out for love nor money.

Picked up the men and was conscious that I was going to be at the library for the rest of the day so provisioned them with lots of coffee that they could make for themselves and the kettle and prepared to leave at ten thirty ish.

Arrived and was made welcome.  I returned the books that were digested and delivered a half bottle of the newly found cheap plonk (two litres for two leva forty) for them to savour and make a decision on.  The beauty is that it's only 10% alcohol so you can drink more and not get that's the theory.

Got there and sat out in the sun, collected lots of free plants for my garden, raided the library and I heard that one of the librarians was taking three of the locals to visit a friend in Zlatograd.  It's one of the border  towns with Greece and not one that I go to often since it's a bit of a trek but since they were going anyway I left my car in their village and headed down country.  Because there were four locals visiting the hospital I offered to sit in the back of the Surf on a couple of bags of cement and rode the potholes well.  The ladies went off to do their visiting, the librarian and myself shopped till we's drop and I bought half of the plants that were on offer and so much so that I thing that the shop owner thought it was all her Christmases come at the same time.  Time marched on...the ladies had gone to the hospital...but I was now concerned about my workers and how they were going to get home if I wasn't home at the allotted hour. We phoned the response from the phone...they had gone AWOL....and at this point my brain had kicked in.  I needed a taxi if I was going to make the journey back so one was located....complete with petunias and broom purchased in Djebel ...I made the journey back to the library and back to my house by six p.m.  

At six twenty Bekir and Sally had visitors from Turkey and they were delighted to escort and do the conducted tour of their last two years work.  They are so proud of their achievements that it makes me proud of their achievements if you get my drift.  The upshot was....they got a lift back to their village with their relatives and I could settle into a good book and the wine sooner....result.

Popped round to see my Avatar...she has a new calf and ten new chicks and offered me some of them.  I told her that she was to keep on breeding and I would just take the eggs...seems fair to me.  As for the calf...I told her...three months.....freezer. :-/

Home going...don't want food since I managed to woof down a potato filo pasty thing in Zlatograd and if could be days before the need to eat strikes again...It looks rather like Kew Gardens outside my front door and tomorrow I have to be busy getting them planted.....

LN...tout le mond....I am now into the last book of Boadicea borrowed from my library and a drop of the red stuff.
I have things to do.... ;) ;)
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 26, 2012, 5:56pm; Reply: 41
Thursday 26thApril

Just had some good news...the men can't work tomorrow and I think it's about time they had a day off.  It has been so hot today that I think the temperature got through to them so a weekend off to cool might be appreciated and Bekir has 'gosti' from Turkey.

There was a misunderstanding that started it off this morning.  I had said that we would do the roof drains later not thinking that they were hammering in the nails on the tiles to keep them in place.  The guttering by the corridor / terrace had been put in place but they thought that I didn't want it round the rest of the house where in fact I did.  I see so much squelch here that it just has to be done.  So working away on my computer it suddenly struck me that before they did the south facing roof that we ought to be thinking about guttering so Bekir and myself set off for Djebel to get the 'stuff' and I parked in a clearway opposite the shop and then the police came along.  He tooted his horn to see who responded and I did quite quickly receiving an admonishing look from him and his WPC.  One day I'll get out my photos of me in uniform...maybe I should keep them in the car.  So off we trundled with the guttering hanging out of the back of Beauty with a red scar wrapped round the end and homeward bound.

Men worked on the roof...and as Bekir said they were 'playing'.  It's so fiddly that they have to keep cutting tiles but unfortunately I walked down the garden and didn't like the look of what I saw so it's back to the drawing board Cecil...adjustments have to be made.  The tiles were standing proud of the metal work and I didn't want to see the tiles.  My student this afternoon but I think his mind was elsewhere.  His little brother was ill again with a virus that seems to be going around and was running a temperature so mum was at home and not working in the shop.

Men home home even later, fire going and wine out.  No men tomorrow so here's guessing that I wake up at silly o'clock but it's potter time in the garden tomorrow.  I might even get round to making something with wood if the mood takes me.  I have three whole days to myself.  LN....I think summer is here early.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 27, 2012, 6:12pm; Reply: 42
Friday 27th April

Limited update tonight...the connection is 'very poor' so I'm not going to even risk it.  What is it with my service provider...normally when the sun is shining the connection is poor...when it rains it is 'excellent'.  So...I think it's like the noble Duke of was neither up nor down but on no consequence.

Bit of a lazy day today.  I planted the daffodils that I had had given to me, started a bonfire that the rain swiftly put out and dug up a few more weeds.  I really must get a lawn mower or a cow...either way I need to get the garden down to manageable proportions....I get my clogs wet every time I set sail and I now have red stripes on my sock from the polished clogs.  Lit the fire this afternoon but almost at once the sun came out and it was August weather but then came the April showers.  Tommy came round at looked at the bonfire for goodies and realised there was nothing went off home with his tail between his legs.

Supper was home made hamburgers but unfortunately I had no Oxo only cheap alternatives that I shaved into the mix...wrong....kept hitting very salty clumps betwixt the onions and the meat....another back to the drawing board.  I suppose they are OK mixed with water but who puts water in hamburgers.  Washing them down currently with a little of the red stuff....I hope the weather picks up tomorrow....rain rain go away...

The washing was actually dried way was I going to risk it out.....the energy to get it back in before the rain would have been just too much effort...LN....I'm back to my book in the warmth of the fire... Boudicca...last book of the series ...but as for the spelling....various but you know who I mean.  LN...I'll report back on this one.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 28, 2012, 6:30pm; Reply: 43
Saturday 28th April

Silly o'clock again so read until five thirty this morning and then went back to sleep until eight.  Pottered around, had a shower and washed my hair but I think my get up and go has got up and went today.  It was sunny but there was a cold wind so not the day for really being outside and planting stuff.  Everything that is in there is coming up.  I even spotted a couple of beetroot that have broken the surface, my leeks are coming through and I have four beans now that look exceedingly healthy.

Decided to work out the windows required to the 'soon not to be a wreck' and I'll pay the man a visit early next week so he can come and take the measurements.  I've been creating diagrams and pictures on the PC so that we can identify what goes where which really does help.  They bounded in last time, measured it all up and it got a little confusing but this time they're all numbered in advance.

Still into Boudicca....apparently the librarian hasn't read it yet since it has just been sent out from England so I don't want to keep it too long.  Cooked an early evening meal.  The remains of the hamburger stuff I turned into meatballs with a tomato chilli sauce and served them with spaghetti leaving enough for tomorrow.  Fancied something sweet afterwards so had a jar of black cherries, well no, not all of them but it was tempting.  Sleep overcame me after supper and I dognapped in the chair for an hour or so.  The joys of early mornings :-/ :-/

Hoping that tonight I shall go all the way through...I know the books good but not worth waking up for at an ungodly hour.  LN.....I'm heading downward....I little beer might be in the offing tonight.
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 29, 2012, 6:06pm; Reply: 44
Sunday 29th April

So as I thought. six o'clock found me wide awake even though I didn't hit the pillow until twelve thirty last night. :-/ :-/  Read until seven, tried going back off for a while but it was such a beautiful sunrise that I decided that what was the point of lying there to no avail.  

Had a spring in my step....thought I would have breakfast first and realised that the only butter that I had in the fridge was the local stuff that happens to taste like cheese....not for the feint hearted may I add.  So breakfast this morning was fried mushrooms on toast and well worth the effort of peeling them.  Decided that since it was such a lovely day that it would be a little gardening interspersed with a little of Boudicca and I must add, she is no more.  Raced my way to the end and now Tilly Trotter is on the go thanks to Catherine Cookson.

Decided to revisit the top garden and redesign the upper part.  There were so many weeds coming in from the lane and the field that I had to dig them out but what I had forgotten was that underneath the soil was a whole load of stone that was dropped there by the digger when he cleared the front of the house.  Hard work but I am almost there.....most of the weeds have headed for the bonfire and I started it off at about fivish after the wind had died down a little.

Had visitors this afternoon.  The son of my favourite restaurant lady's, his wife and friends and my birthday four year old who shares my birthday or do I share hers?  They had the full conducted tour courtesy of the son.....he almost is as proud of the house as I am.  He kept pointing out things like my original curtains with the wood and the Suffolk latches...and I am very...moderne...

Supper tonight was the remains of last nights and that bottle of beer has taken a hammering since it has been so hot today.  The cherries are deciding if they want to hop in a dish and become pudding....not sure at the moment.  Bonfire still going  strong...try that in England....and I've decided that the cherries won.....I'm off down stairs and heading for the kitchen....LN....must think seriously about a strimmer or a mower....the scythe is just hard work....LN
Posted by: Elsa Peters, April 30, 2012, 7:23pm; Reply: 45
Monday 30th April

Where has this month gone.....and what happened to the night last night.

Went to bed at ten o'clock last night since my little eyes were beginning to head southwards but woke up at one fifteen and there wasn't an ounce of sleep in me.  Tilly Trotter filled the gap until four thirty this morning and then it was disturbed sleep until seven when I got out and readied myself to start the day.  

I'd left a note to self to remember to put the metal in the car that was being returned to the yard this morning and picked up the invoices so that we could sort those out once and for all.  Grabbed a coffee before I left and put it in my insulated beaker and balanced it between my legs as I set off.  Obviously more in there than I thought as I took a bend a bit sharpish and I now have a scald mark where the hot coffee went.  Made me jump about a bit and had a coffee stain where a girl just shouldn't have a damp patch but fortunately I was wearing my camouflage pants so I don't think anyone noticed.  Moved the cup to the passenger seat, made sure that the lid was closed but again another bend, the thing went over and it would have been OK but we had a surprise passenger to Fotinovo, I warned Bekir about the seat so he put a polythene bag on it but it obviously wasn't enough.  Two of us appearing with damp patches... ;) ;)

Arrived at the yard and we've had short deliveries on roof tiles and overcharging and enough was enough.  We also ordered the rest of the roof guttering, the supports, corners and catchments were put in the boot.  The wagon apparently is on its way either tomorrow or the next day....we'll wait and see.  I now have a final, final bill ending in 30 stotinki and he asked me for money but I said that I could run to the thirty stotinki but on the advice of my builders, we pay nothing until the goods are safely gathered in... ;) ;)

So worked hard in the garden this morning, came in for lunch and went out again when the sun had gone down a's been in the high twenties today.  Now where the men were working up on the roof there has been a cooling breeze, but unfortunately down at my level it was scorching.  The roof is really looking how I want it to look....tiles removed, changes made and it's worked.

Supper was a bowl of cheesy chips with tomato sauce.....didn't feel like lingering over a hot stove tonight...half past ten my time and I'm hoping for a better night....LN. I'll be looking out for those white rabbits in the morning....
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