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Elsa Peters living a new life in Bulgaria    General Boards    My Diary by Elsa Peters  ›  MARCH 2023
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Elsa Peters
March 1, 2023, 6:16pm Report to Moderator

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Wednesday 1st March

So welcome Baba Marta.....the first of March.  It's a day that's celebrated throughout Bulgaria and everyone give a wrist band that is simply woven red and white, knotted on the wrist and on before the second knot you have to make a wish....and I have made my wishes.  Normally I send a card and bands to my friends in the UK but with the postal service being what it is, there's just no chance of anything reaching the required destination so this is my greeting for my friends in the UK and in other counties of the world.

It was another cold and miserable morning when I woke up at six thirty so I made coffee and went back to bed snuggling down in my nest for another hour or so.  It had stopped raining and was drying up the terraces but the temperature was only three degrees outside and after the fifteen last week it's quite a shock to the system.  The plan today was to take the Nipper into the garage to see why the gear stick wasn't moving easily through the gears and if the weather was good I was going with his mother to watch my student play football for the school against another local town school.  I messaged her at eleven and said I was on my way, if she still wanted to go we would go and if not I would make my way to the garage.  As it happened we decided to go but that my car would go down to the garage in the afternoon and they'd look at it then.

We left the shop just before twelve, parked up at the stadium and the teams had already taken to the pitch.  We dried and cleaned off a couple of the seats on the stands and as we waited his father, my other ex-student and his girlfriend arrived and joined us to watch the game.  It was unfairly matched.  My local team had only four players that played football properly, the others had been selected from the school to make up the team where the other lads all played for Kardjali teams, they had a coach, professional kit where our lads played in whatever they could find that was blue but they did well.  Unfortunately they scored two home goals while trying to defend and the eventually score was only three - two to the away team.  Unfortunately my student got a little angry, he engineered one of the goals but the attack players didn't attack when they needed to and stayed in the middle of the field playing more of a defensive game.  I've suggested that my ex-student who enjoys football takes on the task of coaching the local team for his brothers sake if nothing else.

So back to the shop and the garage when it was over, the Nipper was taken down to the garage, they couldn't remove the drain cap from the gearbox, managed to remove the top cap so oiled the gears and put grease on the bits that mattered.  When it goes in next time and the weather is good, they'll made a new part for it and do a proper job on it.  Upside is, it's much easier to change gears now so I'm not complaining.  I asked for a bill, was told that there wasn't one so I've insisted she asks her husband, it's easier to ask them to look at it when it' doesn't appear that I'm asking for a favour.  That done, I received five wrist bands today, had left mine at home in the rush to get to Djebel so went to the supermarket and bought more, back to the shop and we all now have them.  It's a beautiful tradition and tomorrow I shall go round the village and make sure that my ladies have them and next week I shall be running round with flowers for them all...Ladies day on the 8th March.

I arrived home around four, the fire was just about hanging in there so I got it going again, I cooked supper early, spicy sausage, onions and baked beans with bread and that will suffice until the morning.  Just after eight my time, a little television and then bed and feeling very relaxed after a day in the fresh air watching the match and spent with such good company.  LN......I might go to Kardjali if it's not raining.....I'll have to wait and see what the gods bring.LN



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Elsa Peters
March 2, 2023, 6:35pm Report to Moderator

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Thursday 2nd March

Seven start this morning, I topped up the bird dish after throwing out the water from it...the birds were slow to come back but when I checked this evening, they'd had a real good go at it.  The bigger seeds are still there but the grass seeds are all gone. I lit the fire, I hadn't formulated a plan for today, the weather could have gone either way and it really didn't make its mind up so I chanced it and left at around eleven to go to the bank to get my credit card sorted out.  On the way I noticed one of the village young ladies walking and with a long way to the main road I stopped, she willing got in. I dropped her off in Djebel and she offered to pay me so I told her that she didn't have to, she was quite insistent so I smiled and told her to go and I carried on to Kardjali.

I eventually parked up in the bank car-park.  The spaces are limited, only five of them and some clown had parked over the line to the next making it impossible to get my little car in.  I didn't realise there was someone sitting in it until one of the bank employees walked towards it and spoke to someone so I waited until she walked away and as the man was leaving the car I indicated that he was taking up two spaces, he apologised, straightened up and I was able to park up.  He got back in his car and I thought he was waiting for me to go into the bank before he made his next move and as I was entering the bank I noticed that he was using the car park but not going to the bank.  I went passed the security guys mentioning the name of the deputy and I was signalled straight through to her desk.  She was working head down, looked up and invited me to sit down and my card was brought to the desk, I needed my identity card, she tied up the numbers and I have my new card but without a signature strip this time which is a first for me.  We exchanged Baba Marta bands and I left, got back into the car and drove to Kaufland.

The car-park was absolutely full of gypsies begging for money or trolleys to take back for the twenty stotinki and I absolutely refuse any of their advances.  If the parents only were begging that's one thing but all of the little children were out in force as well, what a way to bring them up.  It's not that they don't get money from the state, it's a lifestyle choice and even the man who moves the trolleys told them to clear off from the car park.  Anyway, I bought a few items including a new four USB charging point and one of them is a fast charge connection...it can sit on the table in the stairwell to save me chasing around for where I left things last.  I ran the gauntlet of gypsies once again when I'd emptied my trolley, this time it was a lady with a child in a pushchair and I still said no.  I locked the car up and took the trolley back to the station and they were all still collecting there....aarrrgghhh.  On to Lidl, bought potting compost, new gardening clogs and a joint of pork to curry tomorrow and the rest for the freezer, yogurt  and a few more sweet things and headed home, stopping at my little supermarket for bread for the freezer.  I unpacked the shopping and put it away and sat drinking coffee when there was a knock on the door and my neighbour from the bottom of the village was there with fluffy pancakes.  Zelinger had made them for the anniversary of her husband's death and she'd brought them round asking where I'd been all day.  She saw the petunias in the porch, said that she wanted them and I told her no, she can have some later from the little house.....much too cold to get them today.  Off she went, I put the television on and promptly went to sleep for a couple of hours, waking up at seven and it took a while to come round, I'd gone into a very deep sleep.  I rescued the fire, it's going well and before I came upstairs to write the blog I checked on my mini-greenhouse and the wisteria seeds and lo and behold, the two at the end have started to sprout and there could be more.  First time I've tried them, I'll leave them for another week or so and then pot them up...clever old me.  LN......I've had a good day, enjoyed an easy trip to Kardjali and achieved what I set out to do......LN



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Elsa Peters
March 3, 2023, 5:18pm Report to Moderator

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Friday 3rd March

Damp, cold, miserable and sleet mid morning.  Two degrees out and only fourteen in initially which soon changed the inside when I lit the fire.  The highest outside temperature was four and a half degrees...it's not been one of my best days weather-wise...I much prefer snow.

So birthday greeting went winging their way to Gibraltar, my flat mate from about fifty years ago is celebrating today so I warned her off cake, alcohol etc.....it was what kept up going in the old days and fortunately no more.  We exchanged a few messages on FB and a promise to see each other at some stage this year....as I said, we go back a long way.  Fire going, omelette for breakfast using the last of the spicy sausages and it's kept me going until now.  I did plan on roasting the pork joint that I bought yesterday but now it's cubed and will go into the slow cooker with a sweet and sour sauce for tomorrow night and will be served with a jacket potato.  Nothing like planning ahead.  Washing from yesterday was put away from the airer in the bathroom where it sat overnight....that little room is a godsend in the winter.  Next job was to bring in enough logs for today, fill up the log basket and two log carriers in the porch so there's no chance of running out today or tomorrow if it comes to that.  

I walked the garden when the rain had stopped and took a few pictures of the flowers that are out but there are lots more daffodils on the cusp of opening,  Lots of hyacinths are pushing up the flower stalks and shrubs are budding but not breaking out yet.  They would have been out but this cold snap has but everything behind again.  I had another look at the wisteria and went back to the book to read about the cultivation and I'm thinking of abandoning the attempt after reading that it might take many years before they begin to flower.  I suppose I can always give them to the younger neighbours...I know my friend that's always begging for 'stuff' from the garden will welcome them.  As for doing anything else today, the sofa and television played a big part in my day.....the curtains are all drawn to keep the generated heat in, I'm really missing Transponder TV and thinking about finding another online streaming provider.  Any news from Transponder would be appreciated...a lot of people are very disappointed.  

Seven fifteen my time, I ought to head to the kitchen and search for something that's not going too take much time to prepare.  LN.....Hopefully better weather tomorrow, the pickies show the weeds are doing very well......  LN



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Elsa Peters
March 4, 2023, 6:30pm Report to Moderator

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Saturday 4th March

Silly night last night, I was watching 'The Fall' on Netflix and I just carried on with the episodes.  I had a vague feeling that I'd seen it before but had forgotten most of it, probably catching a few episodes in the UK when it was on TV there.  So it was two when I went to bed, seven thirty when I woke up, it was raining so it didn't seem likely that I would be out gardening today.  I laid the fire and emptied the ash can, two loads of logs in yesterday so I had enough for today. It was seventeen degrees in since I'd kept the fire going last night so having completed most of my chores, made toast.  I also decided to put the cubed pork into the slow cooker making sauce of onions. tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, a dash of vinegar and a tin of tomatoes.  Easy to do and it would cook while I got on with other things like carrying on with my Netflix series.

My neighbour from the bottom square came round and brought me more fluffy pancakes in memory of her father's passing.  She has a habit of looking round the house and spotting new things that she's not noticed before and most of them I bought a long time ago. Her favourite phrase is 'I want one' which is very difficult when the shop has ceased trading and I have to explain it in Bulgarian.  I made her a coffee while she carried on looking round the room, by now it had stopped raining so we walked the garden.  She spotted the wallflowers and commented on how many I had and sure she could have a couple of them so I found the trowel and dug her up a few from the yard and I do have lots of them.  I also had another plant that she wanted, the tyres in the yard took a bashing....and now that's another job for me to do, dig out the grass and tidy up the rest of the plants in there.  Off she went, I found a bag for the booty, thanked her for the fluffy pancakes which I'm told were made with yogurt not milk and we confirmed that we're off to Kardjali on Monday.  I have to go to the post office to see if anything is hiding from me there and then I'll take it as it comes in Kardjali....I have nothing particularly to do there.

Back on the sofa this afternoon and the series is finished so it's an early night for me.  I'm just about to make pasta to have with the pork casserole and I might even have a bath since my eyes have probably taken on a square appearance.  The weather cheered up this afternoon, the moon is out but there are lots of clouds to the west at sunset.  LN......Let's see what tomorrow brings and what else I can pot up besides the four wisteria that I've started from seed from my plant on the workshop terrace......LN



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Elsa Peters
March 5, 2023, 5:36pm Report to Moderator

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Sunday 5th March

A cold night. the temperature dropped to zero but the house was relatively warm and once the sun broke through the house temperature rose considerably. I went back to bed with the Kindle and managed to get a few good times registered with the Sudoku programme, put it away while the going was good and got on with my morning.  I make breakfast of poached eggs, load of washing in and then settled down and watch a film on Netflix, The Starling, I've watched it before and had vague recollections but forgot enough to enjoy it for a second time.  It even brought a tear to my eye, but only one of them.  The washing went on the airer in the bathroom, it could have gone out but the air was cold, next job was to get wood in and set myself up with potting compost, clean pots to get the four wisteria seeds into compost which I did.  They're now sitting on the windowsills in the stairwell and let's see how they progress!!

I phoned a friend in the UK and we chatted for about an hour or so....luckily it still comes off my allowance and costs nothing.  I was going to phone another friend but I have to really search for the number, it wasn't in my phone so I have to check address books.  It was only to thank her for the Christmas card that arrive last Tuesday...the joys of the BG postal service.  So down to the bottom of the garden for a bonfire to get rid of the household rubbish.  I got it going fairly easily and then climbed up and sat on the wall at the bottom of the garden checking the hillside.  The shepherd's two dogs were lying lifeless on the hillside, the sheep weren't out so they were having a day off and probably lay there until four this afternoon.  I had this horrible feeling that someone had poisoned them and they do terrorise the villagers but one of them got un and then the other and they sauntered home...no street patrols today.  I did spend time with my internet security people, there was a request out for a subscription that's about to expire in eight days but I noticed that I have a multicover for the same thing valid until the thirtieth of September.  I phoned them, explained the issue but apparently the company are not able to view subscriptions taken out by third party reseller.  I explained that I thought this was pretty bad policy, I was told that's the way that it is so the other one I'll let expire and will be able to make sure that the other one is activated with the other key that I have.  Problem solved.

By now the day was moving on, I lit the fire at five, set the slow cooker in action with the remains of yesterday's casserole, added curry powder and the rice is cooking as speak.  I'm now going down to check it before it burns to a cinder. I've had a productive day and now to try out the curry.  LN.....Kardjali tomorrow but post office in Rogosche first to see if they have anything hiding in the post office for me...fingers crossed......LN
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Elsa Peters
March 5, 2023, 5:53pm Report to Moderator

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Late pickies for the 5th



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Elsa Peters
March 6, 2023, 7:26pm Report to Moderator

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Monday 6th March

Seven start so not so bad and didn't have to be anywhere until nine thirty so it was a very leisurely morning.  T threw the remains of the rice out for the birds along with the stale bread, two bananas for breakfast, plants watered and in the Nipper by nine twenty.  I opened some of the windows upstairs to let some air through, it was four degrees but the sun was breaking through so it shouldn't get too cold.

I picked up my neighbour and she had lots of luggage with her and it was obvious that we were off to her apartment in Kardjali.  The first stop was the post office in Rogosche and contrary to the information given, the post man wasn't there so I went back to the car and my neighbour went to the Library next door and left her telephone number to give to the post man when he turned up.  We carried on to the apartment, I didn't go in with her bur turned the car round and parked up, she came out once more laden with a the same bag obviously emptied and refilled with things going the other way.  I went to the bank and parked up and confirmed that my details for payment for services didn't need updating but if I want to use the card for internet payments I have to register it with the head office...strange way of working.  This probably accounts for the fact that I couldn't pay for my road tax on both vehicles around Christmas time from the UK and ended up paying with my English bank.  So parked up and we made our way down to my cheapy shop...I hadn't been there for a while, my neighbour had never been there and was like a kid in a sweetie shop.  I did manage to but a pair of leather shoes for when I can come out of boots and a long sleeved shirt for gardening in.  Back to the car and we went to Kaufland and I bought lots of flowers for my ladies for 8th March, some for me and very little else and we forgot about Lidl completely but I did stop for gas to top up the car.

Drove back towards Rogosche and we decided to have one more try at the post office and the man was there.  He'd already been told that I was looking for cards by my student's father who works in Djebel post office, nothing there for me but at least I have his telephone number and can phone and ask.  Drove my neighbour home and we arrived around three, she made coffee and then I headed home, unpacked my shopping, made another coffee and sat of the sofa recouping from the day.  My neighbour doesn't speak any English and communication is difficult because she speaks Bulgarian at me as if I understand everything and doesn't find easy words that I know...so it's not a light conversation.  Fire lit at five, plants in the little house and two yellow roses reduced for quick sale pruned and will find their way in a big tub with others that I bought last year.  It should make a pretty display.  I'm not wanting supper, I bought a banichka and I've grazed on it this afternoon while watching 'Peaky Blinders'.  LN....Half nine my time, almost time for bed, student tomorrow so another full day......LN
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Tuesday 7th March

Six thirty start this morning and somehow I meandered through carrying out the normal routines and finishing quite early.  Firstly though I caught the sunrise and it was amazing how many clouds were over the mountains to the south east and gathering or rather rising without coming over to the Bulgarian side.  I didn't look natural and it must be the wind that doing it.....they are layer on layer.  Poached eggs on ham on toast for breakfast using up the last of the shop bought eggs.  I'm now moving on to the village specials delivered last night by my neighbour and this could be part of the routine going forward.

Everything washed up and put away, bed made, fire laid and now the morning was mine.  I removed the flowers that I'd bought yesterday and put them on one of the dustbin lids and watered them.  The rose bushes got the old flower heads removed and one or two of the ailing buds, they were watered and spent the day in the porch on the window sill and looking much better than they did in the shop.  The porch was tidied, the petunias tied up before the flowers ended up on the floor, more pots tidied and then it was finish up outside, shower, hair washed, dried and I was filling my time until two and that was easily done.  I fired up my old computer and went down memory lane, I was looking for the copies of the CD's that were moved from my iPod ages ago so that I could put them on the memory stick that I use in the car.  I wiped the memory of the stick, copied one set over then found more so opened up the folders and moved more of them over.  The nice thing is, I've moved over playlists so they're not
by artist as they've been loaded, I get them mixed up so it's more enjoyable to listen to.  

Into the Nipper by two, and set off for town for my student's lesson.  I sat with his mother in the shop for a while and we could hear the boy playing football in the lounge and I said that it sounded like Morse Code telling me to hurry up so that we could get on with the game.  He proudly showed me his new running shoes for use on the treadmill and I asked him who was playing football in Kardjali yesterday, I saw the cars outside the stadium.  He said that he was at the match, was playing ball-boy and how he was talking to the players from the other team.....and in English because some of the other team's players were from Europe. We had the lesson, I went back to the shop and he came down with me and his brother had returned from Sofia where he'd had to go up to do more work on his Masters.  I left them all around five thirty, the weather was turning cold and I wanted to get back to light the fire and on my way I caught sight of the moon coming up so put my foot down and managed to get pictures of it before it got lost in the clouds that were forming.  Chicken drumsticks tonight with a jacket potato,,,,it's just finished cooking and time to serve.  LN.....More flowers from Djebel tomorrow morning and some for my student's mum and my ex-student's mum.....and then round the village ....LN



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Elsa Peters
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Tuesday 7th March

Six thirty start this morning and somehow I meandered through carrying out the normal routines and finishing quite early.  Firstly though I caught the sunrise and it was amazing how many clouds were over the mountains to the south east and gathering or rather rising without coming over to the Bulgarian side.  I didn't look natural and it must be the wind that doing it.....they are layer on layer.  Poached eggs on ham on toast for breakfast using up the last of the shop bought eggs.  I'm now moving on to the village specials delivered last night by my neighbour and this could be part of the routine going forward.

Everything washed up and put away, bed made, fire laid and now the morning was mine.  I removed the flowers that I'd bought yesterday and put them on one of the dustbin lids and watered them.  The rose bushes got the old flower heads removed and one or two of the ailing buds, they were watered and spent the day in the porch on the window sill and looking much better than they did in the shop.  The porch was tidied, the petunias tied up before the flowers ended up on the floor, more pots tidied and then it was finish up outside, shower, hair washed, dried and I was filling my time until two and that was easily done.  I fired up my old computer and went down memory lane, I was looking for the copies of the CD's that were moved from my iPod ages ago so that I could put them on the memory stick that I use in the car.  I wiped the memory of the stick, copied one set over then found more so opened up the folders and moved more of them over.  The nice thing is, I've moved over playlists so they're not
by artist as they've been loaded, I get them mixed up so it's more enjoyable to listen to.  

Into the Nipper by two, and set off for town for my student's lesson.  I sat with his mother in the shop for a while and we could hear the boy playing football in the lounge and I said that it sounded like Morse Code telling me to hurry up so that we could get on with the game.  He proudly showed me his new running shoes for use on the treadmill and I asked him who was playing football in Kardjali yesterday, I saw the cars outside the stadium.  He said that he was at the match, was playing ball-boy and how he was talking to the players from the other team.....and in English because some of the other team's players were from Europe. We had the lesson, I went back to the shop and he came down with me and his brother had returned from Sofia where he'd had to go up to do more work on his Masters.  I left them all around five thirty, the weather was turning cold and I wanted to get back to light the fire and on my way I caught sight of the moon coming up so put my foot down and managed to get pictures of it before it got lost in the clouds that were forming.  Chicken drumsticks tonight with a jacket potato,,,,it's just finished cooking and time to serve.  LN.....More flowers from Djebel tomorrow morning and some for my student's mum and my ex-student's mum.....and then round the village ....LN
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Wednesday 8th March

Six thirty start then I rolled over and it was eight the next time I checked on my Fitbit.  Really good night, I'd fallen asleep on the sofa so with two hours there and the  rest of it, I think I obtained a better sleep score that I've had for ages.  The morning jogged along, I made toasted ham sandwich for breakfast, curry for supper into the slow cooker, decided that I would go into Djebel and buy more flowers for my friends and chocolate for my friend that keeps the flower shop.  I over dressed with clothes, the morning was cold but the sun got up and by the time that I arrived in Djebel I was beginning to get a little bit hot under the collar and was wishing I'd left one of the sweaters off.  I parked on the street near the cash point to get money and then thought about parking up on one of the numbered parking bays while I bought flowers, chocolates and gift bags which I did.  I went and delivered the chocolates and the lady was over the moon and almost in tears....she said that no one had given her anything, I said that no point in giving her flowers since she owns a flower shop so I'd bought her chocolates.  The shop was very busy so I went back to the car now in the parking bay and as I arrived, a man approached me and said that I'd have a parking fine for parking where I did.  I checked the national parking permit site and nothing was listed that it was a pay car park so I drove to the police station, the police man said not to worry and then I delivered some flowers to my ex student's mum, sat with her for a couple of minutes in the shop that she looks after and then drove to the town square car park and parked up.  Next delivery was to my student's mum in the car shop and then home.

I sorted out the rest of the flowers and delivered to the village ladies, went down to see my other friend's mum in the next village and sat with her and giving her a welcome break from digging the garden to plant up the vegetables. Home with one hyacinth as a present and a pack of mince meat for the freezer and now the rest of the afternoon and evening was mine....Lots of good will floating around on Ladies Day here...it's really celebrated.  Rive is cooked, supper is about to be served, back to watching my series backtracking after sleeping through a couple of episodes last night.  LN.....Another good day......LN



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My Diary by Elsa Peters (only location)

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