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 Itchyfeet's Blog

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PostSubject: Itchyfeet's Blog   Thu Jul 12, 2012 10:52 am

First topic message reminder :

I haven't tried Blog Writing before, but have put our first reflections of living in Bulgaria down in print so that we can look at them in a few years time:

Our last pieces of furniture from our home in Turkey finally turned up here in Bulgaria this past week and our two leather sofas that we bought off of Ebay many weeks ago are being collected from the UK to come here in the next few days.  This will complete our inventory of things much needed for sustaining life here in this former Communist country.  Whilst this is going on some of our wood has also arrived and is pilled up just inside our gate, these come in metre lengths but have to be cut up to useful sizes in readiness for putting on our wood burner in the coming Winter.  This means that I have to cut them up with the newly acquired Chain Saw in the coming weeks before another great load turn up to be cut up, we expect to use somewhere in the region of 15 cubic metres of wood to stave off the cold.  Thermal clothes are in abundance in our wardrobes and are being held in readiness for the Winter to come.    So as you can see this is an action packed Ranch style homestead that we are currently living in.   Our massive gate which keeps unwanted intruders from our property has wooden staves rather like "
South Fork"
and we need a lot of strength to get them open.

Our life here has changed from being Townies to "
The Darling Buds of May"
- I have been fortunate in securing my own Katherine Zeeta Jones in the personage of Annette and she has shown that our own Zeeta is up to the mark and has even outshone the real one in many ways.  On the other hand of course I can't help but feel that I have been short changed from some of the exciting and exhilarating things of the real one, but I am not complaining!!   Must remember to go to Specsavers when I am next in the UK.

The house seems to be full of furniture, nick knacks and most things and there is still boxes and bags to unpack, goodness knows where they will all go.  We moved out from an apartment in Turkey to this big house of 200 square metres and we still need more room, strange, but it appears to be the case.   The dogs are happy and spend most of their time smiling and looking at us and commanding attention with nuzzling our legs and arms until we put our hand out and stroke them.  Ayla is due for her clipping of her coat tomorrow, she looks more like a sheep wandering around the field as her coat seems to have grown even more than last year and so to keep her comfortable and cool it all has to come off.

It is in to Veliko Tarnovo tomorrow to get an air conditioner apart from other things, temperatures here seem to be higher than Turkey and come July and August it will be impossible to sleep without something to keep us cool.   The grass and weeds appear to grow at an alarming rate and the strimmer has been working hard in an effort to keep the field to a reasonable height, this means that anything that is hiding in the foliage has to get the hell out or stand the chance of being sliced by the saw blade on the end.  Endless snails have been topped whilst this extensive task is going on.   The snails here are huge and resemble almost half the size of a tennis ball, it wouldn't be so bad if there was only a few of them but the field is covered in them, there must be thousands hiding in the grass and weeds keenly watching out for the strimmer to pass by followed by me wielding the massive machine across our large field wishing that I hadn't started doing the job.  We assume that the Storks come here to eat them and this is what makes up most of their diet, there is the green Lizards of course, they are about a foot long and although their bodies are green, their heads are blue and they can change colour according to what surrounds them. So in all, a great change from living near the sea in the Aegean region of Turkey and also a great change from living in the UK.
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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:20 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Priceless! I was wanting a cheer up, thanks Itchy. g

Mrs Eq

Thanks, Mrs Eq - I am glad that I made your day!!

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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Sat Feb 16, 2013 5:54 pm

[size=150:1nvu8wro]Roll On the Summer - Winter nearly karput!!

With only a few weeks to go before the Winter has finished (we hope) I have already earmarked our DIY work for the coming warmer weather. So knowing what I already have to do it is frustrating to see the cloudy skies and the occasional rain that accompanies it. We are on the precipise so to speak of getting on with our work and enjoying the satisfaction that follows finishing jobs around the house and the land. Whilst these thoughts are going through our heads, we have frequent visits from Bernard and the usual sit down at our dining table, with occasional "
chin, chin"
being said to whatever drink we are holding. Bernard has a liking for the real Scottish Whisky as opposed to his home made brew of Paskalevets Whisky, we have bought bottles of Scotch now and again for him and he appears to finish them off with great gusto.

Not too many weeks from now, he will be mouching about in trees around our lanes and eagerly searching for the ingredients for his next "
brew up"
at his personal distillery. He will be grabbing my hand and taking me to see the magic potions being fermented and metal pipes will be belching out a steamy substance from the nozzles before poured into one of his bottles ready for consumption later in the year. No moment is wasted in recreating his "
liquor vault"
and filling it to the plimsole line. His distillery is in his garden and the pipes that he uses will have been covered in snow for much of the Winter. I am sure that a quick scrub down and a good blast through the pipes takes place before he prepares the next brew in readiness for the drinking season.

Bernard, like a lot of the BG's sits on his seat that he has made outside his house, most of our villagers appear to do the same. They sit there for hours waiting for someone to walk by and greet them, these seats are usually made with a metal framing and then wooden seats and backs are screwed onto them. Nothing special about them of course, but they perform a function for them and they enjoy endless hours on them sometimes asleep and sometimes awake, depending on whether anyone has passed by and also whether the sun has shone on them and they have felt cosy enough to drop off to sleep. The seat outside our property has been taken apart by descendants of the last owner and the seat and back has been nailed to our wall. A large black bow had been pinned to it together with a picture and writing informing whoever is reading it that this person had lived in the house behind the sign and has now moved on to pastures new, not in this world of course, but in the next. The seat and backing is still nailed to the wall because I have been busy attending to other DIY duties and moving it all back onto the metal framing is not on my agenda at the moment. We did take some advice from one of our neighbours about removing the "
deceased notice"
, bearing in mind that we live in a village and the last thing we wanted to do was upset anyone by taking it down. We were advised that taking the sign down would not create a problem and the next day the sign was gone.

I am sure there are many parts of the BG culture that we will learn about as time goes on and we will find out how to approach each thing when it happens. We have attended one of the village functions which took place in what had been a library I understand from one of the villagers, there was music with a DJ and the local mayor was present together with nearly everyone in the village. Every now and again an impromptu speech was given by whoever felt like giving one, only in Bulgaski of course and then the music restarted and they were off again on the dance floor, most of which was modern BG music. Occasionally they played one of their traditional pieces and nearly everybody got up to dance, it was obvious that this was their culture and this was one of their old songs that they all knew how to dance. The lead was usually taken by the mayor, who after all, he had to take pride of place, this was his village, he skipped and tapped his feet in time with the music and swished his hanky around at the same time followed by his minions. Whilst sitting there and not being able to take part in their dance, I wandered what traditional music we had in Great Britain and came to the conclusion that Morris Dancers smacking their poles at each other and jingling those tiny bells on their ankles was the nearest thing to what I was watching.

The villagers have decided that they will appoint someone to translate the speeches into English when they have any further functions, there are probably 6 British families living in our village now and we all visit the local bar where everything happens at least once a week. The bar opens at 8.30 am, this is not my time of the day to be swigging at beer, but quite a few of the locals get in there early to drink and talk to their pals. It is also the time of the day when anyone needing work done at their property arranges to meet BG's who want to work. Whoever needs something doing explains what is to be done and the locals appoint who is the most experienced for doing the work, it seems a fair system. My experience of local workmen is that they will only give you a finished job price and not go into what they want to earn for a days work, but we have had local villagers doing work on the land and have been happy with the result. Roll on the Summer when we can get out into the open air and get things done, starting this year with some vegetables on our land, that will be a steep learning curve for us!! I can remember my granddad taking me to his allotment alongside Southern Railway track at Wimbledon, we had to cross the live rail to get to it!! He was growing runner beans and in his zest to make them grow longer and straight, he had attached a piece of cotton on each one with a metal nut and there they were blowing in the wind, can't imagine anyone doing that anymore!!
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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:17 pm

Now the weather has improved there is DIY materials laying about to be used and jobs to be started and now I am spoilt for choice what to do next. Suffice it to say Annette has determined what she wants done first, so that is my agenda set for next few days!!


s s s
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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Thu Feb 21, 2013 1:37 pm

Oooo do you have bits of green appearing too? I so love the spring. :Clap:We have even had a dry week, something we have forgotten ever happens, and there are definite sproutings happening.

Flipping cold though, brrrr. No chance of warming up with a spot of DIY, no fun being in a rented house. I'm sure Annette will keep you busy, us ladies always know what is most important to tackle.

Mrs Eq.

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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Fri Feb 22, 2013 7:03 am

Itchy my friend I have not fogotten you just been so busy I have now caught up with your blog and as always a fantastic read T for sharing your experiences with us and sharing the joys of life sport :Hearts:it

Oddy

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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:46 pm

What a great read and yes you are learning all the time about the different things and culture that the Bulgarians have to offer us all and its so nice to hear you say how much you are enjoying the life but better when the the Summer comes as you rightly say.
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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Fri Feb 22, 2013 5:44 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
Oooo do you have bits of green appearing too? I so love the spring. :Clap:We have even had a dry week, something we have forgotten ever happens, and there are definite sproutings happening.

Flipping cold though, brrrr. No chance of warming up with a spot of DIY, no fun being in a rented house. I'm sure Annette will keep you busy, us ladies always know what is most important to tackle.

Mrs Eq.


Thanks Mrs Eq, knackered already, no chance of getting out into the field just yet, putting all my energy to doing work in the house.
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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Mon Mar 04, 2013 2:42 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
What a great read and yes you are learning all the time about the different things and culture that the Bulgarians have to offer us all and its so nice to hear you say how much you are enjoying the life but better when the the Summer comes as you rightly say.

Thanks Blink - we are never too old to learn and there is plenty more to learn I am sure!!

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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:51 pm

What can I say, brilliant, I had to spread the whole 10 pages over 2 days as it was too good to just read all at once and have to say not once did it ever get boring, so please keep it coming.

As for the wood chopping saga, I saw a youtube video which I thought was excellent, where the person had (presumably) nailed a car tyre onto the top of his chopping block, then filled it up with wood to be cut, that way even with near misses something not only got cut but nothing flying out left right or centre and no constant bending down picking up wood still to be cut or that which had fallen of, then once all the logs had been cut they could be put where ever you wanted to put them.



I posted the search page as it shows more than just the one method.
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] ... dOnPWjqqbQ

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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Tue Mar 12, 2013 9:48 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
What can I say, brilliant, I had to spread the whole 10 pages over 2 days as it was too good to just read all at once and have to say not once did it ever get boring, so please keep it coming.

As for the wood chopping saga, I saw a youtube video which I thought was excellent, where the person had (presumably) nailed a car tyre onto the top of his chopping block, then filled it up with wood to be cut, that way even with near misses something not only got cut but nothing flying out left right or centre and no constant bending down picking up wood still to be cut or that which had fallen of, then once all the logs had been cut they could be put where ever you wanted to put them.


Many thanks for your comments - my next episode in our experiences in life are almost ready, just a bit of tidying up before being posted.

Your chopping block thoughts on using the tyre sounds good, I will need a bigger chopping block before I try it out.

c c
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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:02 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
What can I say, brilliant, I had to spread the whole 10 pages over 2 days as it was too good to just read all at once and have to say not once did it ever get boring, so please keep it coming.

As for the wood chopping saga, I saw a youtube video which I thought was excellent, where the person had (presumably) nailed a car tyre onto the top of his chopping block, then filled it up with wood to be cut, that way even with near misses something not only got cut but nothing flying out left right or centre and no constant bending down picking up wood still to be cut or that which had fallen of, then once all the logs had been cut they could be put where ever you wanted to put them.


Many thanks for your comments - my next episode in our experiences in life are almost ready, just a bit of tidying up before being posted.

Your chopping block thoughts on using the tyre sounds good, I will need a bigger chopping block before I try it out.

c c
........................but have you got a big enough chopper.................. ::
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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Tue Mar 12, 2013 11:46 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
........................but have you got a big enough chopper.................. ::
Strange you should ask that but I was always taught never to brag or mock the afflicted so my reply would have to be Angel

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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Wed Mar 13, 2013 2:42 pm

Thanks Itchy

I have caught up now with everything fab read as always - Well done and T for sharing H H

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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Sat Apr 20, 2013 1:34 pm

The Forum has very kindly given us Blog writers a nice heading amongst the advertising and all should be well, but I have noticed that there is a great decline in members reading my Blog's and so as an experiment I have re-posted one I wrote a month ago and posted it here to see what difference if any that the readership might be!!

[size=150:3h8afm98]Get The Starting Blocks Out!!

At the present time life here in BG is like being a contestant in a 100 metre athletics race. The weather is holding us all up from getting out into the garden and making a good start to getting the ground ready for planting vegetables. My starting blocks have been nailed down ready at the front door in readiness for the race and so far my body has arrived at the scene with the short sleeved shirt and shorts, albeit the shorts have a pair of Long John's underneath them, but no contestants because the weather has been so wretched to start any race.

With big plans for doing momentous jobs outside and inside the house, I have had to lower my standards and start using that thing called a paint brush. I cannot kick start my body until the heat arrives and then it is all systems go for action packed days until the Autumn, every day will be a challenge and conquest. Of course there won't be a knighthood at the end of it all, but the inevitable and hopeful praise from my own version of Katherine Zeeta Jones in the personage of Annette who will be plying me with drink and food to enable me complete all my jobs and rush past the finish line.

We all have our own way of doing things and what time of the day we do them, in my case nothing is started until the clock reaches double figures. I have always been the same and I can remember my father seeing me appearing from my bedroom at noon and making an appearance in the kitchen and then he uttered those all familiar words "
wait until you get in the armed forces, that will make man of you."
At family gatherings my uncles used to say the same thing to me and all my male cousins, it used to sound like a threat really and after having seen many films of the UK armed forces in action it would appear that they were telling us the truth.

I joined the Boy's Brigade when I was 13 and at that time the BB was a pre emptive introduction for the armed forces and we did Physical exercises which I didn't like and first aid which I enjoyed with great big bandages and put splints on other members. We put bandages and splints on one poor soul, his legs and arms were covered in the things and he couldn't move an inch, so given this situation we took it upon ourselves and put him on a stretcher and carried him outside and left him perched on the middle of a horse trough!! Can't remember what happened after that, except that we were called to report to our captain to explain ourselves.

On the good side, the BB had a band and I started playing the snare drum and ended up being the solo drummer for the 5th Thames Valley Company and solo drummer for our battalion. Eventually I bought a drum kit and set it all up in my bedroom, can't remember what my neighbours said about it now, but I used to play to my hearts content with earphones jammed over my ears. After much practice with the drum kit I made contact with a music agent and he sent me all over London as a freelance drummer playing with rock groups and dance bands. The Derby and Joan club in Wandsworth was a function never to be forgotten, I arrived late because I couldn't find the venue and heard the band playing before I walked in the dance hall and could hear them playing, but no drummer, so that was the right destination. After opening the door I was confronted with dozens of people dancing and an all woman dance band, my version of the "
Saint Bernard's Waltz"
is something else.

So I appear to have written quite a lot and still only half way through what I started out to write, so it is best if I split this blog into two parts, so to be continued . . . . . .
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PostSubject: Re: Itchyfeet's Blog   Sat Apr 20, 2013 9:34 pm

I love real life blogs like this and I'm looking forward to the next one. I have to admit I am one of those members who hasn't ventured over to the other site, no reason why I guess I am just use to being on here.
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