Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Visit to Stanevo Nov 30th - Dec 3rd 2012

After the last trip, we had decided to return to the house to view the new bathroom & get the new units for the kitchenette.
Everything packed as we were taking a suitcase with us loaded with various items including some stuff for Si & Mandy.
Awake at 3.15am on the Friday morning 

for the drive to Gatwick airport ready for the 6.20am flight to Sofia.
All went well & we were off.
2 ¾ of an hour & we were in the airport.
We met Dimitar & Illian as arranged.
Had a quick chat & they handed us the documents for the electricity company.
We said our goodbyes & we went to collect our VW Touran ( Or similar )
Surprise surprise it wasn’t a Touran but a brand new Chevrolet Orlando MPV.
It was a very nice 7 seater where both sets of rear seats folded down to make a good size loading bay.
The car was full to the brim with petrol & had to be returned the same.
Out came the Tom Tom Euro version sat nav & off we set.
I must admit that as you leave the Sofia airport you drive through what looks like a really poor part of the city, which is a real eye opener.
Set off towards Ikea to collect the kitchen units & some other essentials.
It was weird visiting an Ikea that seemed very quiet.
1st stop was the restaurant

I had 10 meatballs gravy & chips, bottle of water
Sue had a potato gratin affair, refillable Coca cola.
It worked out at £3.60  for BOTH of us!
Dinner sorted, trolleys ready lets go !
Sue made an appointment to see the kitchen department for the kitchen units etc.
I collected other items from the warehouse below.
4 trolleys later , paid & ready to load
I really didn’t think it would fit in the jeep, but it did.

Now the extra special part!

If we had bought the kitchen in the good old UK, it retails at a whopping  £625

So if you have a house in Bulgaria , DON'T carry it all the way from the UK !!!!


Because EXACTLY the same kitchen retails in Bulgaria for .....£513 !


A British chap sitting in an ex UK City Link Ford Transit looked on in amazement as it all fitted in.
He did state that we had won the “Best packing of the day “ award.
There was still plenty of building work happening. 
We took a final look around & then set off towards Varna.
After about 40km's we reset the satnav for Stanevo.
There are 2 ways to get to Stanevo, the main road or the Mountain road which apparently takes an extra 4 hours.
 As we were lifting higher into the mountains the fog descended onto us.
Travelling through the town of Montana you could smell wood smoke everywhere, this coupled up with the fog gave very poor visability.
Further on & it got worse, we were following the taillights of the car in front.
We had pre arranged with Si & Mandy to meet us at the house at around 7pm.
They had been there nearly all day & had been tidying around for us.
They had collected a stove from the Pink house for us but unfortunately it had fallen to bits when they attempted to move it.
They had bought a small gas blower heater which was fired up.
Mandy had made a really nice curry which was bubbling away on the Cadac stove.
We  arrived about 8.15pm
We had dinner, chatted a while & they set off for their village with Lilly the dog in the pick-up.
Sue & I had decided to pop over to the market in Lom the next day ( Saturday ) as it was the best day weatherwise.

We sat the new mattress on the wooden slats & then placed it on the tarpaulin.
It was a bit different than September but we were back in the house, in Stanevo

We emptied the Ikea purchases from the Jeep into the house.
Had a walk around taking some photos.

Decided to have a quick walk around the village park which is literally 25 feet from our gate.
There were some monuments from the wars.

Our local shop that we had visited in September had closed, we looked inside & saw that the shelves had been moved & were being painted.


It was a pleasant day & we noticed the new tarmac roads on the main road & the side roads in Kovachitsa.
We parked up & looked at  a horse & cart passing
A visit to one of the shops & we came out with a loaf & what looked like an apple turnover.
It was a cheese bread with a feta cheese inside.
Not my cup of tea.
A short drive & a few swerves to miss the potholes & we were parking in Lom.
1st place was the building shops that are on a disused train yard.

We bought our
log burner
2 x flues
Angled flexi pipe
6 metres of polythene temp repair for the windows !
2 x handfuls of large head nails for the plastic.

We went off to park close to the town centre where the market was.
One thing that is weird is that there seems to be no parking restrictions & just parking & then walking away seems funny.
Temperature was up to 18 degrees
The Saturday market seemed quite busy & there were some different stalls

Horse tack

Fruit & veg

Fresh meat

Fresh Fish  ( ALL of which were swimming in tanks )
Music cassettes !!!!
There was a small kiosk in the market selling small pork burgers in bread rolls which we had & a drink. 
Had a look around the town itself

We found this little kiosk selling preserves honey etc...
Well if it was open it would !

Some of the local fashion was "Interesting", with some 1980's / 90's shell suits still being worn .

We bought a few essentials & set off for home.

Thankfully Si & Mandy had swept the chimneys for us.

I am not exaggerating when I say that the log burner took minutes to install.
Carried it in, assembled the flue onto the fire with a bead of silicone sealer.
Then the other 2 parts.
Whole job was 15 – 20 minutes !
Fetching some logs from the pink houses summer kitchen, hitting them together you could hear that they had been in storage for years as they were really dry.

After setting the fire, it was lit & it started to heat the room up straight away.
The logs seemed to be cherry wood due to the sweet smell coming from them.
The flue started to change to a lovely gold colour & then purple.
I assembled the double bed & Sue helped & we then fitted the slats & the mattress.
We also fitted some pvc sheet that we had bought over the windows, that still need attention.
Due to the weather change we just sealed them up until we can look at them again.
We also started to fit the curtain poles for the back bedroom.
      We had bought some eggs & Sue rustled up a really nice omelette.
      After dinner I ran a bath & then had the 1st bath in the new bathroom.
      Also built were the small wooden step unit & the butchers block. 
      Off to bed @ midnight ready for Sunday & the start of the kitchen assembly.

     Woke about 7.30am, re-lit the  fire &  finished off the curtain poles.  
     Sue fitted the curtains in the back bedroom
     Some eggs were put on to boil for breakfast.

      I built up a temporary lounge ceiling light while Sue assembled a lamp we had bought in  IkeaStocked up the log pile for later
     This is the space where the units were going, with the boiler inside a unit, something that was unheard of in Bulgaria as they are always just plonked into the bathroom without any boxing in

After breakfast I started assembling the kitchen units
     I had never built a kitchen before but the units seemed to go
     together without any problems.
     Si, Mandy & Lilly arrived & they shot off into the garden to tidy it up.
     During the growing season you can't see any rubbish lying around.
     Mandy took down the old tomato plants & left the posts firmly in the ground.
     Then took the pepper & aubergine plants out of the garden.


    We all sat down for soup!
    After finishing the cabinets & placing them in the room, they didn't look too bad !





Friday, 23 November 2012

We're off again !

We are off again !
Flying over soon
Collecting a VW Touran rental car & then popping into Ikea in Sofia to collect..
Double bed & mattress
Kitchen units for the kitchenette in the upstairs house ( pictures to follow )
& a few other bits.
Ikea in Bulgaria seems a bit cheaper.
The breakfast consists of 2 x sausages 2 x bacon scrambled egg , a roll & a coffee....99 sudinkis!
Remember ther are 100 sudinkis in a Lev & a lev is just 40p !!

We are meeting Si & Mandy for supper on the Friday, & then on Saturday have a go at the kitchen assembly.
I have never assembled a kitchen before, what could possibly go wrong ?

See you all soon.

Fuzz & Sue.

Thanks go to all of our readers, almost 2,000 as of today.

Monday, 5 November 2012

Update for work on the Bathroom / Kitchenette

We have had some photos from Dimitar, showing the work that has been done.

 Liking the floor tiles !

Monday, 22 October 2012

Back in the UK.....

Well we have been back in the UK for just over 3 weeks.
Missing Stanevo already !
The weather hasn't helped being misty & raining quite a lot.
Sues Mum & Dad got back last Friday the 19th, they were away almost 5 weeks!
Hoping to catch up with them soon to compare notes.
We cant wait until we go back at the end of November, Dimitar the agent has sent us a few picures attatched to emails to show how the builders are getting on.
They have lined the cess pit with bricks,

 laid the cold water feed pipe & the 4" waste pipe.

Also the breeze blocks have gone up to create the bathroom / kitchenette area.

By now the bathroom should be installed & completely tiled.....