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Elsa Peters
June 1, 2021, 4:17pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 1st June

So it was another early start and at seven I was out enjoying the morning.  I heard a car outside the wall at the front of the house so I went round to see what was happening and saw a red old car, the window opened and my neighbours from Turkey had arrived to do some work on the wreck next door.  As they were setting off, I asked if they had had the vaccination and the back door of the car opened and the wife said...'Naaa'...so I responded with 'Heidi' which roughly translates as 'go away' and I laughed.  At this point they drove off and I bet that had a chunter in the car.  I didn't bother with breakfast again just in case I had to repeat the blood test and set off for the main hospital just before nine to give myself time to park.  I parked up eventually on a side road and got to the cubicle by ten to ten and there were several waiting with numbers lower than mine.  I was approached by one of the others and he asked me which number I had so I told him eight and he said that he was number eight also and he pointed out that mine was dated the day before.  I made my way to reception and one of the other ladies dealt with my query and said that I'd got the wrong date.  I pointed out that the time on the receipt for my payment for the appointment was timed at eleven twenty yesterday and my appointment was given as ten so why give me an appointment before I'd even got to the hospital.  Now some officious employees don't like errors pointing out to them so she said that she would make me an appointment for eight thirty tomorrow but thinking about it later, the one that took my money, put the wrong date on the slip and didn't enter me on the list for the doctor.   No apologies, no putting me as an extra on the list so I settled for the new appointment and have to go to the hospital tomorrow again.

I went back to the polyclinic to find out the results of my blood test but the doctor wasn't in so I spoke to the receptionist and explained what had happened and that I'd find out the results of everything the next day but showed her that where I'd had the blood taken, the area was very swollen, hot and red and she insisted that I wait for the doctor and she phoned her to return to the surgery and immediately said that I was to go back to see the head of department for dermatology.  I told her I didn't want to go because I would have to negotiate the receptionist that I'd just had a ruck with and she virtually pleaded with me to go...so I did.. My doctor gave me the result of my blood test and everything is OK.  I returned to the hospital reception and smiled as I approached and the one that I'd had the disagreement with took my documents, took my one lev, never smiled at me but the other one did and I got my appointment immediately.  I joined the queue, was seen after twenty minutes and the doctor said that it was an infection and wrote out a prescription for me and gave me the report for my doctor so back to the polyclinic.  I left the form with another doctor, mine nor the receptionist were in residence so I'll see them tomorrow.  

So there I was extolling the virtues of the Bulgarian health system and I still am but I'm sure that they will not make the same mistake again with any future booking.  Over to the chemist and I'm on antibiotics for seven days, I've taken one and it seems to have gone down a little already.  As I arrived home, the rain started, the temperature outside is down to twelve degrees and I'm seriously thinking about lighting the fire and I've added the quilt that I'd put away and it's now back on the bed.  LN....Let's see what happens tomorrow at my eye test......LN
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Elsa Peters
June 2, 2021, 3:32pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 2nd June

So another early start but this time I had somewhere to go.  It was a cold morning and I should have put socks on s my doctor reminded me later in the day.  I went to the loo before I left but half way to Kardjali I felt I needed a pit stop but at just after seven in the morning you really have to drench the brain bank and suddenly Kaufland came to mind and I pulled on to the car park and saw with relief that the store was open and...... that's really good to know.  I pulled on to the hospital car park and managed to find a parking space by being a little cheeky pointing to a very short space near the parking cubicle.  He smiled at me, moved his bottle of water to stop anyone parking there but my Nipper fitted perfectly Cinderella.  I walked half way to the hospital entranced and realised that I'd left my mask in the car so I went to retrieve it and set off again.  The hospital was empty and I was the first to sit down outside number eight cubicle and within half an hour, the area was heaving.  I was first in when the optician arrived bang on time.

I handed my form over and asked him if he spoke English and sheepishly he said that he spoke 'a little'.  The assistant started filling in the form without difficulty so that was a start.  He asked me what was the problem to I explained it to him and I got a complement on my Bulgarian.  We sailed through the examination, he gave me the 'puff' test and diagnosed dry eye syndrome and I had two lots of eye sprays, one with cortisone that I have to put in the 'bad' eye for seven days and one that I can use in both eyes for as long as it lasts.  I've not met this guy before and he is so different from my usual one....I think I'll settle for him in the future.  I signed my forms and walked back to the car and made my way to the Polyclinic and fortunately found a paid parking spot and as I walked to the hospital the police were out in force booking everybody parked on the street in the vicinity of the hospital.  They must be getting short of funds again.  I went to see my doctor to show her the prescription and the diagnosis and she agreed that if it doesn't improve I should go back and see him again.

I drove to Kaufland, bought a few items including two bags of compost and was home for eleven thirty and felt knacked, I've had busy times at the hospital but at least I know my blood test is OK, my ECG was OK, my cholesterol is OK so it's more or less like an MOT.  I drove home and was there by eleven fifteen and marvelled at what I'd achieved.  I made coffee and ate a jam doughnut and there was a message from my co-traveller to Thassos to say that he'd filled in the form for our entry into Greece and it seemed that I would have to fill in my own form since I wasn't 'family' or resident in the same home.  He volunteered to come over to make sure that we had the same accommodation details entered and I'll get the email at midnight the night before we leave for Greece.  I am registered and all the documentation is in place.  We say under the bedroom balcony out of the light shower and I know it's good for the garden but I'm sick of it now.  I did a load of washing and put it on the airer, I'm going to light the 'fire to make sure that the washing can be put away in the morning.  Supper is going to be lightweight, I've put the boiler on, I'm destined for the bath tonight, an early night and tomorrow I'll be sorting my packing or at least deciding what I want to include.  LN.....And now ..relax.....LN
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Elsa Peters
June 2, 2021, 3:48pm Report to Moderator

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And a few pickies



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Elsa Peters
June 3, 2021, 5:28pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 3rd June

Well after the sapping events of the last three days with so many visits to doctors and hospital I didn't wake up this morning until just before eight and what a welcome change.  It was a misty old morning but then it burnt off, a little nippy as I threw the remains of the French stick that I'd bought yesterday out to the cats and any other takers over the wall.  As I was walking back to the house, one of the bushes in the grave garden moved and on closer inspection the black cat was hiding under one of the Spireas and all I saw was a pair of green eyes staring back at me.  I think it sees this garden as a place of refuge with the potential of getting fed.  She settled on the one slice of bread that I'd put out for the birds, maybe she didn't like the flavour and texture of the French stick either and it's the last time I buy one from Kaufland.

I made bacon and fried egg for breakfast to give me a good start for the day and there's not been a lot of activity other than trying on summer clothes that have been stashed away in the chest in my bedroom.  So far this year I haven't done the winter/summer sorting and put the winter ones away.  I did manage to make a beef curry and put it in the slow cooker to work while I didn't, and searching for potential things to pack, have found shoes in the third bedroom that really need throwing out.  I found my trainers and they might be going with me to Greece especially if there is any walking involved. Last night's washing remained on the airer to make sure it was really dry before I put if away and I washed another couple of sweaters and put them out and at this point, as per normal, the clouds rolled over but it didn't rain thank goodness.  

At two, Netflix went on and that was me, head down until four catching up on the last few days.  I woke up cold so lit the fire and for June it's almost unheard of.  I've still got plenty of wood so I'd rather be comfortable that suffering for the sake of four or five logs for an evening.  It's not really suffering but I do like to be comfortable.  I enjoyed my curry and used a new boil in the bag rice pack but think I really enjoy the real thing.  I seem to have more control over how soft and fluffy it gets.  It was OK but nothing to write home about and I was unsure how much salt to add, next time I will go back to the old method.  I finished off with peach yogurt and my antibiotic tablet, nothing like sending it down in style.  

I found the 'family' this morning, Blue Boy was at the top end of the garden and Rosie was down the bottom which was a complete reversal.  As for Sandy, not spotted for a few days now...could be anywhere.  Eight thirty my time, all quiet on all fronts and I think it's going to be an early night with the Kindle.  LN....Building my strength up for next week....LN
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Elsa Peters
June 4, 2021, 5:23pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 4th June

Funny old day for weather.  It was an eight start for me and as I sat at the desk I spotted the 'family' out and about so took pictures to identify them later.  As I said yesterday they'd swopped territories and they had remained in the new areas overnight.  The sun was out early on, it clouded over a little and then cleared so I thought it was time for another top up so at ten or thereabouts I moved the chair out to the balcony, put up my 'curtain' to protect the cows' prying eyes and in my underwear took up a horizontal position and got another coating of sun on.  As you've guessed it's all in preparation for Thassos, I don't want to be lily white when I hit the beach.  I liberally put sunscreen on but could feel it burning but no need to worry, the sun wasn't out for too long.

Having taken the pickies of the tortoises this morning it made me realise that the rainy weather had encouraged the grass and weeds to grow in what I loosely term a lawn.  With it now clouding over I got the mower out and as I started it up it groaned and moaned and I knew that it needed cleaning underneath so I persevered until the petrol ran out and tipped it on its side.  Having done this it was plain to see that it really needed sorting so I took a kitchen knife and cleaned the underside thoroughly, oiled around where the blade spins round, filled it up with petrol and fired it up again.  It works like a dream now and I managed to get down to the lump of wood in the middle of the main house grass, it certainly needed it.  I gave the cows a shock when I put the clippings over the wall, one bolted and the rest of them followed suit and they headed down to the pond.

By now it was getting on for three so I went for another search for one of my long lost relatives and still can't managed to pin down a birth or baptism record for him thereby confirming his father.  I only have a last will and testament stating that his father, John and his father in law should administer his will, so because I can't find his father I'm not sure of his mother either.  It's been about two years on the burner and like a spot, I keep picking the top off it.  I eventually gave up and settled down to Netflix, it was threatening rain so nothing more to do outside.  I've finished the series I was watching so I'm on the hunt for the next but instead found a film about Mary Queen of Scots which I managed to get to the end of and then promptly fell asleep for about half an hour.  Supper was easy, a can of tuna with mayo, onions and beetroot followed by more peach yogurt and I've just realised that its twenty after eight my time....the evening has shot by.  The terraces are starting to dry up again but looking at the long range it looks like this weather is running into next week...thank goodness I shall be in Thassos all being well.  I was always told to not count the chickens before...When I was out there I noticed that the cherry tree is absolutely laden and I've just see a jay heading in that direction....doing my bit for the wild-life.  LN....An impromptu day in the garden...it does look better though......LN



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Elsa Peters
June 5, 2021, 8:33pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 5th June

Silly start for me, I woke up at four and didn't managed to get back off to sleep until four this afternoon in the bath.  By eight I'd managed breakfast and washed up, and eventually I was able to see the bottom of the garden so I went to check on the family but no signs of either.  It was a pretty cold start to the day with wall to wall or rather, mountain to mountain fog. I had a bit of a meander morning, I was trying to sort clothes out for Thassos digging deeply into my summer clothes chest and coming out with others that I'd forgotten I'd even bought and I really must have a sort out.

At ten thirty I'd written a list and wrote a list of things that I needed including petrol for the mower and euro for the trip.  First stop the change shop and that's one thing ticked off, second over to the cheapy shop for masks for the trip and the ruling is if we're not from the same family we have to wear masks in the car so ten new ones as reserves.  I stopped off at my student's mum's shop for a chat and updates and then over to see a friends new shop that she's opened but she was off visiting so I had to find her in another friend's shop.  So many friends and so many shops.  I stopped off and bought myself a pizza for lunch and a local yogurt drink, twenty leva of fuel for the mower and bread and sun tan lotion from the supermarket and it was still only one thirty when I arrived home.  

I warmed up the pizza and munched my way through it and put a load of washing in the machine and went upstairs for a bath,  Unfortunately I forgot to put the boiler on. woke up in cold water and couldn't top it up with hot so washed my hair and conditioned it, rinsed it off, got out of the bath and wrapped myself in thick soft towels to warm up again.  It was now getting on for four thirty so I dried my hair and for some strange reason it looked good left lose so I toyed with the idea of leaving it like that for this evening's jazz night at one of the hotels in Kardjali.  We've all had those days when you can't decide what to wear and I was putting things on and taking them off until I remembered that it was an outside venue so leggings went on with a role neck sweater and covered with my very long lambs wool cardigan which is very warm and it was for the best.  I'd arranged to meet my compatriots in crime at the venue, managed to park up in the car park and was shown to their table,  They'd beaten me to the first round so I coughed up for the second and stuck to water and orange juice....it does for me these days.  We had simple food, the groups were OK but it wasn't true jazz, more a mixture of styles and as I suspected the temperature dropped and by ten I was ready to depart and head for home. Interestingly, the fire-flies were out and about, strange things aren't they,

I'm not used to driving at night and really wish they would replace the road markings when they've renewed the road surface,, Not that it means much to a Bulgarian but I find them useful.  I didn't find any stray cows on the way home, all must be safely gathered in and there was very little traffic.  I suddenly remembered that I'd not put the washing on the airer so that was my first job and fingers crossed, it will dry in the house.  Nothing on the agenda for tomorrow except packing,,,and that shouldn't take long.  LN.....Only two days to go....LN
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Elsa Peters
June 6, 2021, 5:13pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 6th June

Six start and then I got my head down again and it was eight when I woke for the second time.  I settled for toast for breakfast, old bread out for the cat and over the wall for the birds. it was a much better morning from what we've had lately and I sat on the bench and enjoyed the morning.  I settled for sorting clothes and have at last more or less settled on what I'm taking with me to Thassos, I ended up putting sweaters away and tee-shirts on to the shelving unit in the bedroom.  It's just not been the weather to encourage this sort of action before.

I meandered through most of the morning and at one I challenged myself to get on with the grass cutting.  My neighbour turned up around eleven to return a pair of wire cutters that I'd leant her, the fence is renewed and the cows are kept outside the boundaries.  We sat drinking apple juice and then made out way out to the garden, she's the neighbour that look to see what's new and if she's able to carry it home with her and I found a Choisya that needed putting into soil and not held in a pot so off she went with new treasure.  I made a start on the grass and it was pretty hot out there for the first few laps and it seemed fairly easy going.  Unfortunately it was still pretty wet underneath and the damp slowed down the transit of the cuttings into the basket and I was having to empty every couple of runs.  Eventually I'd finished the main area and came in for water and settled on the sofa for an hour or so and at four went out again and then the clouds came over.  Not only did we have large raindrops but thunder and lightening and firstly I don't like thunder and it's not good weather for mowing grass so I gave up at six.  

Two loads of washing done and is on the clothes airer moved into my bedroom to get the sun if it shows its face tomorrow and I've accumulated ironing which is not normal for me,,,,but I want to take a couple of pairs of cotton trousers with me.  I noticed that I had a very colourful lizard on the terrace and I was amazed how long the tail was.  It even waited for me to go in the house and get the camera so that I could take the shot and just a few more of the flowers that have appeared.  Gentle day tomorrow, out for lunch in Djebel with my student and a catch-up.  LN.....Now I'm getting excited.....LN



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Elsa Peters
June 7, 2021, 5:14pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 7th June

Well this morning began with a message to say that I had another form to fill in for our trip to Thassos confirming our details, the port of departure and arrival, email and telephone numbers.  Apparently this was only introduced today so it's a moving target....and you just hope that you've got all bases covered.  I've packed a few times and unpacked and packed again.  I was originally taking a rucksack and one for my swimwear but now I done away with the second bag,,,too much baggage.  So tonight I'm waiting for my last form that is supposed to arrive at midnight and then off tomorrow morning.

It was quite a good morning, toast again for breakfast and the last of the washing done and just as I was pegging out we had a few drops of rain fall.  What is it with this weather and it's supposed to last until the end of the month and there's no chance of getting my wood in like I did last year around this time.  It's a good job that I've still got some.  At eleven I was in the Nipper and was heading towards my student's house for an early lunch.  We hadn't had a catch up for ages and I was really looking forward to it.  I stopped off at the supermarket and bought a giant box of lemon After Eights and a packet of biscuits and she was waiting at the gate for me.  Her father was there, lunch was chicken and salad and she'd made a banana yogurt for desert but we had that when I arrived...pudding first.  Her mother arrived at one from her work and we talked about gardens, the weather and family.  She went back to work, I stayed with my student and I agreed to bring back a bottle of sea water for her to smell....she's missing the sea and Greece.  I've tried to persuade her to have the vaccination but there's so much wrong press about if.  I mentioned to my student that I had two tortoise and that they were the same ones as last year, she said that she had one and thinks it's the same so I told her about me putting nail varnish on the shell so that I could identify them and she's going to do the same.  

I left at two thirty, stopped off at the cash point and carried on home and by this time it was really raining so my first job was to get out the few things I'd put out this morning.  It was actually raining harder in Djebel than here so it wasn't too wet.  I shan't need supper, I'm still topped up from lunchtime so just a snack later.  Updates are likely to be quick or none existent ....not sure of internet access and wifi points.  Bear with me....I'll put lots of pickies on later.  LN.....Just a few thigs to sort......LN
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Elsa Peters
June 8, 2021, 5:19pm Report to Moderator

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Tuesday 8th June

What an eventful day.  I didn't go to bed until one this morning, I waited for my Passenger location form to come through at just after midnight, printed it off and then went to bed.  Everything was assembled in the hallway, I only had to fill in the five hours before I had to get up and drive to the next village.  I set the alarm but was awake before it, made coffee and left the house at six forty five having to take the long way round because of the road closure.  I presented myself at seven fifteen and we loaded the car and set off for the border complete with all necessary documentation.

The border crossing took about an hour and we were soon on our way to the ferry departure point, more documents to fill in but soon we were on our way to Thassos.  Into the hire car and we headed east of the island and arrived at the apartment around three thirty.  Luggage unpacked and we decided to walk down to the beach and for me to take in the surroundings and what a beautiful place it is.  It's such a shame though, the tourists are not coming due to Covid and the restaurant owners are desperate for new diners.  We ended up at a restaurant that my friends have been to before, they were well received and the meal was very good.

A quick trip round the supermarket and now about to sit on the balcony and it will be an early night for all of us,,,,,it was an early start.  No pickies....I've taken  lots but there's no USB port on this machine to attach the camera.....they'll have to wait.  LN....Let the good times commence....LN
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Elsa Peters
June 9, 2021, 4:17pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 9th June

Sleepless night but what can be expected from a new to me bed.  I thought I would be straight to sleep but no to be.  Eventually I fell asleep at 1 but was awake at six and dressed by seven and we were in the car and searching for breakfast by eight.  We headed up the coast and found a baker's shop and settled for feta in fill and by this time a coffee shop was open.  Back into the car and over to a beautiful cove and no one else was there so it made it a no brained.  Eventually a few more arrived but we swam in water that was cold to get in but very soothing once you'd made it.  By twelve we'd had enough sun so went to the supermarket and picked up a few things for lunch in a very leisurely fashion a took it back to the apartment.

One stayed to paint and I was taken to see the historical sights, a few more beaches and dinky door shops.  Back for five thirty, off to another rustic restaurant for supper.  LN....Thassos is magical....LN
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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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