Saturday 31 January 2009

Flying Sponge Cake - Not!

Flying Sponge Cake - NotCakes are lovely, it's not often we get them as they are expensive items and quite a luxury, but it was a the weekend so Baba had treated us and paid this from a measly pension she gets. It was one of those cakes that just melt in your mouth and the sponge was so light it could fly away from the plate quite easily. My one unfortunately didn't fly. As I tried to take the first bite, the cake toppled and fell on the floor. Unedible as from that point, I was offered half of Baba's cake as compensation.

Friday 30 January 2009

Embedded Splinter

Embedded SplinterKnocks and bruises happen all the time, I don't think there has been a day where a little pain has been experienced from this. Today the pain was felt more than most days as I tried to tackle a door whose latch wouldn't work. Before I had really begun the pain was inflicted. As I surveyed the latch I felt behind the metal bracket and a small splinter got between my nail and finger. another day another ouch! This ouch will last quite a few days as the blood followed the extraction of the splinter.

Thursday 29 January 2009

Bread for the Dog

Bread for the DogCarrying a loaf of bread from the car to the kitchen is such a simple job. What can go wrong? Well this can. As I took the loaf in one hand to get the keys out of my pocket, the plastic bag split and the slices of bread scattered themselves all over the wet yard. The bread was only fit for next door's dog . It was a trip to the shop for another loaf, this time it was carried in a carrier bag.

Wednesday 28 January 2009

More Than A Trip

Every has a trip, it is emabssassing, but we get over it, after all it's only a trip. But not all trips are the same, some lead onto other things. This happened today as I entered the kitchen. My slippers are slightly too big for me and they caught the edge of the carpet and I tripped up. This caused me to fall forward towards the dining table. My hands went up to the table to break my fall and fell upon a glass of orange juice that was standing there. The glass of orange was knocked and the juice flew over the table ont the lap of Baba who was sittgin opposite. She jumped up and the plate in front of her was flipped and the soup spilt as well. This was a comedy of errors with no reheasals or script having been read. Every has a trip, it is embarrassing, but we get over it, after all it's only a trip. But not all trips are the same, some lead onto other things. This happened today as I entered the kitchen. My slippers are slightly too big for me and they caught the edge of the carpet and I tripped up. This caused me to fall forward towards the dining table. My hands went up to the table to break my fall and fell upon a glass of orange juice that was standing there. The glass of orange was knocked and the juice flew over the table on tthe lap of Baba who was sitting opposite. She jumped up and the plate in front of her was flipped and the soup spilt as well. This was a comedy of errors with no rehearsals or script having been read.

Tuesday 27 January 2009

Flying Cornflakes

Flying CornflakesIt was cornflakes for breakfast this morning as got the meal ready. The cornflakes come in a plastic bag, which is very hard to open. Once the bag is open, it tears very easily. Can you guess what happened next? You're right, the bag was being forced open and it suddenly gave with the rip going beyond just a little opening. All the cornflakes just flew out and all over the table and floor. Next time I'll use scissors or a knife.

Monday 26 January 2009

Finger Stabbing

Finger Stabbing I was peeling an apple for Baba this evening, she can't deal with the skin on apples due to her lack of teeth. the knife that was used was so old and had been sharpened so many times that it was more like a sword. Not being familiar with this knife an accident was waiting to happen and it did. As I stabbed my finger misjudging the length of the knife when cutting the apple into segments.

Sunday 25 January 2009

Skalitsa Healing Stones and Ripped Jacket

In the Skalitsa farmhouse today as the warm weather continued, we walked to the healing stones for a quick lie on them to get rid of all the winter aches and pains we had. After about 20 minutes we climbed down them and I slipped and ripped my jacket in the process. Another job for Baba as we get back to Yambol this afternoon. We feel much better physically, but can ill afford new clothes with these types of bad luck.

Saturday 24 January 2009

Boiler Broken - Again

Boiler Broken - AgainMidday and just had a jog, the boiler had been switched on early in the morning for some warm water after I had got back. After all this being cut off with water and ice over the last two weeks, it was quite a luxury to have to opportunity of a shower. In the wet room for the shower only to find that there wasn't any hot water! Apparently the boiler now wasn't working, there was no electric getting through to heat the element. Another call now for someone to come and have a look at it, and of course, no shower!

Friday 23 January 2009

Woken Twice

Baba was asleep as I worked quietly on the lap top just after lunchtime. I went to the bedroom for something as I heard the skype ring tone sound waking Baba up. I didn't manage catch it in time to get the call. I unplugged the laptop and took it in the bewdroom out of ear shot of Baba who went back to sleep. I tried to call the caller back but they were now off line. The lap top was now back in the main room and plugged in again. Five minutes later the same caller rang again waking Baba up for the second time! I unplugged it and took it back into the bedroom again and finally spoke to the caller. Baba only sleeps for an hour of so a day and this happen at this time, twice!

Thursday 22 January 2009

Mozilla FireFox Browser Crashes

I have set up around 80 of my favourite sites I visit everyday to see whether they have any new post and occasionally comment on a few that have. The time it take to load these are around 20 minutes so I do this first thing before going to the bathroom. By the time I have finished all the sites have opened up and I can browse away. Today, the Mozilla FireFox browser crashed while I was in the bathroom and the whole process had to start all over again with twiddling thumbs while I was waiting.

Wednesday 21 January 2009

Apple Core Bad

Apple Core BadI have an apple a day, these are Bulgarian home produced local apples that are so tasty I look forward to this apple eating occasion every morning. I normally eat the core and all that is left is the stalk. This morning the enjoyable process started as the apple was crunched away as normal. Suddenly there is a sharp bitter taste n my mouth as I look at the apple, the centre was rotten and I had eaten and swallow half of it. No halves of maggots found today, but I'll look before I bite.

Tuesday 20 January 2009

One Step To The Washing Machine

One Step To The Washing MachineIt was another few kilometres out jogging today and a change of scenery as all the ice and snow has finally gone after two day of temperatures soaring to +10-12 C. All that is left are big puddles. Sometime they cover the whole width of the road as I avoid the vast majority. There was an instance of this and I had to jog into puddle water, as there was no escape. What I didn’t see was the mud laying under the water as my trainer squelched into the deep layer of mud, this of course was scattered all over my running kit as the next steps were taken. Straight in the washing machine when I got back.

Monday 19 January 2009

Yet Again No Water In Yambol

Yet Again No Water In YambolAfter seven days without water in Yambol, then travelling to Skalitsa and spending the the best part of a day to get water back by defrosting a frozen farmhouse, it was back to Yambol yesterday evening. This morning after an early jog for a few kilometres, the pace picked up in the last stretch of road looking forward to a shower after my efforts. It was sods law that when back in the house, the water had been cut off! Not due to frost but another reason. How long for this time?

Sunday 18 January 2009

Head Hit Twice - In The Same Place

Head Hit Twice - In The Same PlaceIn Skalitsa today it was an early but foggy start to the day as I began the chores of collecting the wood for the wood burner that had kept me warm in the farmhouse all night. The wood stores are kept in an outbuilding which is a former pigsty. The door is a side of an old wardrobe held upright with an old metal rod. As I tried to move the metal rod it sprung back and hit me on the head. No blood, just sore as I carried on. The as I took the wood out in a box, my head hit the low wooden beam above the door - In exactly the same place as the metal rod had hit minutes early! This always happens, you hurt an area of you body and it get hit time and time again in the same place!

Saturday 17 January 2009

Banana Skin Accident

Banana Skin AccidentEvery once in a while something happens that is quite funny after the event, but not during it. Today I went for a jog, only a few kilometres to get the Christmas and New Year excess weight off me. The snow scattered fields glistened under the bright sun glaring down in the deep blue sky. My eye however were on the road as the cracks and potholes are at their worst during winter here. I caught sight of a banana skin ahead that had been thrown out of a car. The slap stick thoughts about slipping on a banana skin came into my head. This wasn't going to happen to me as I side stepped it. However the side step made me slip and I tumbled into some snow on the verge. I was unhurt and just glad nobody saw it happen. Funny now, but most annoying at the time.

Friday 16 January 2009

7th Day Without Water - More Expense

7th Day Without Water - More ExpenseThe ice has now gone as we splash our way up the street for a daily loaf of bread and more bottled water. When we got back home and found that we still had no water (the 7th day now) even though the thaw has melted most of the snow that was around. The bad luck was that the bottled water was now sold out and no new supplies in until tomrrow. We have now to take the car to the supermarket (more exspense) to get more water supplies. We are expecting water any moment, but still have to spend as a result.

Thursday 15 January 2009

Icy Ceramic Steps

Icy Ceramic StepsThe routine this week is different as Galia is off work in hospital, so different things happen at different times. With these unfamiliar systems there is bound to be something that goes wrong - and it did. The result was painful as my chin is still throbbing with the knock it got. It was getting the bottled water from the local shop, as we still have no water after six days, then climbing the stairs up to the front door. My foot slipped on the icy ceramic surface and my shin hit the apex of the lower step with great force. Another very bloody and painful moment as the antiseptic was applied moments later.

Wednesday 14 January 2009

Iced Roads - Taxi Costs

Iced Roads - Taxi CostsBad luck usually cost money and today was no exception. We had to go to the clinic for a medical check up this morning. Still without water, this being the fifth day, we looked out and saw that it was raining. We thought the thaw was on its way with this. As we stepped outside, there was no such thaw, the rain turned into ice directly it hit the ground. Looking at the Lada, it was caked in 1/2 cm of solid ice all over, the door stuck fast and jammed. The road were also pure ice, no chance of driving anywhere on this road. We had to slid our way to a main road that had been gritted and got a taxi to the clinic and back.

Tuesday 13 January 2009

Free Water Available - Too Late Frozen Again!

Free Water Available - Too Late Frozen AgainSome excellent new came in last night. Out neighbour two door away has managed to defrost his water main pipe and has running water again after three days. We were told that we can fill some bottles with the water this morning. This will save us lots of money having to buy water and at least see us through the next two days with the water we planned to store.

This morning, loaded with bottles and buckets, the trip was made. When I got there I was told that the pipes had frozen up again overnight and there was no water coming through again. It is now day four without water and the wait for a thaw continues.

Monday 12 January 2009

Frostbitten Feet

Frostbitten FeetFrostbitten feet today, I stupidly wore sandals driving to work in -18 C temperatures. The radiator of the car froze, the engine overheated and of course the car heating system didn't work! Ouch! This will now be a painful few days and a lesson learnt, don't take chances in this severe cold weather. Why is it always that lessons are learnt from pain?

Sunday 11 January 2009

No Gas, No Water and No Internet

No Gas, No Water and No InternetThe only day off we get off from work out of 12 days and we want to relax and get out breath back. Wouldn't you know it, we woke up to no water, the gas had run out and no more at the service station due to Russians cutting gas lines and the Internet wasn't working. All on a Sunday of course when there is nothing yuou can do about it. At least we had electric and some snow in the yard to melt as a substitue. We never complain though, just get on with things, life here is never boring with all the bad luck that happens.

Saturday 10 January 2009

Too Cold for Gas Fueled Lada

Too Cold for Gas Fueled LadaYet again the Lada features as a jinx seems to be going on at the moment. It was so cold last night that this morning the gas system just wouldn't fire up the car. It was a switch over to petrol as the car shuddered into action. Then as I turned into the main road the car shut down. I was now causing a hold up as the engine turned over again and again to try and start it again. It out and pushing the car into a side street with Galia steering and that where it remains until the sun rises shines on it to warm it up.

I went to pick it up after lunch and it started first time as I took it back home. What will I do on Monday is the temperature is as low?

Friday 9 January 2009

Snapped Lada Car Key

Snapped Lada Car KeyIt was so cold last night that the lock on the car door has frozen solid. Some water was warmed up and poured over it as the key now fitted into the locking mechanism. As the key turned it snapped with half of the key now wedged in. It seems that ever day there is another problem with the Lada car. So from now on, until the car door lock is repaired, entry will be from the passenger side. I just hope my back holds out climbing over the seat avoiding the knobbly gear lever.

Thursday 8 January 2009

Scratched Car Windscreen

Scratched Car WindscreenThe ice was particularly dense on the car windscreen this morning and my credit card had already snapped weeks ago from scraping, so I resorted to a ceramic tile. That was the only thing I could find. After doing the job very well and wondering why others don't use this as an ice-scraper, I found out why when the ice had all gone. There on the window were loads of big deep scratches that will remain there for the life of the windscreen. It was bad enough before, but even worse now!

Wednesday 7 January 2009

Muddy Car Door and Windows

Muddy Car Door and WindowsIt was an unusual site today as the local supermarket car park was full of cars. This is the first time I have know it to be full since moving here. So I looked for a place on the street and found done in a prime position not really understanding why any one else hasn't parked there. When I had finished shopping I realised why. There was a big puddle in the road and as cars zoomed past it splash the muddy water all over the side of my car leaving mud all over the doors and windows. Some major cleaning by hand is now needed as it doesn't rain here right now, it just snows.

Tuesday 6 January 2009

Snow Pictures

Today was Yordan Imen Den or Jordan name day as I went for a walk to the church for a blessing and then to the River Tundzha where there was the ceremony of diving into the ice cold waters to retrieve a cross thrown in by the priest. I had to wait two hours in freezing weather and continuous snow fall for this event to happen. I survived, but my rechargeable batteries in my camera didn't like the below freezing temperatures and gave up on me. Hence no photographs of the swimmers in the river.

Monday 5 January 2009

Lada Ventilater System Broken

Lada Ventilater System BrokenAfter digging my Lada out of the snow this morning and making the daily run the work and back, the ventilation system stopped working. After investigating the problem there were leaves blocking the system. The plastic vents were taken out to clear the blockage, but only then did I find out that they can't be put back in without the whole dashboard being taken off. This is a job for the garage!

Sunday 4 January 2009

Why Bother Shovelling Snow?

It had been a day where snow was lying and like every other families in the village a path was made clear for incoming visitors. Having slaved with a shovel for at least 20 minutes, a path was made from the road to the house as I looked back proudly at the clearing. Three hours later, the snow returned and the path was completely covered again. I won't bother again today.

Saturday 3 January 2009

Bathroom Cabinet Mirror Door Accident

 bathroom cabinet mirror door  accidentStill in the party mood and of course the following morning the consequence of that was a dozy man who went to wash and shave in the bathroom. Not realising that the cabinet that had a swing door mirror that was open when bowing to washing his face, rose to meet the corner of the mirror and ended up with a cut head. This of course woke me up and further work was needed with antiseptic and cotton wall to stem the bleeding. Makes a change from cutting myself from shaving I suppose.

Friday 2 January 2009

Snowed In

Snowed InWe were due to go to a party this evening, the third night in a row, then the snow came. We are effectively snowed in this evening and had to call our hosts to inform them. Shame as we haven't seen these people for nearly a year and were looking forward to catching up with the news and gossip. Looks like another evening that will be put aside to do this.

Thursday 1 January 2009

New Year Resolution - Not!

New Year and a new chapter in Bulgaria. The New Year Resolution was to start jogging again to get my weight down but it had failed on the first day as we visited friends at lunchtime and had a few drinks. Before we knew it, it was dark outside and too dangerous to jog in pitch blackness, and I don't want any more bad luck today with falling over or bumping into something. This must be a record for any New Year resolution in my books. Any way there's always tomorrow, who says you have to abide by man made conventions anyway.

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