Saturday, 10 July 2010

Kamen Horse Fair

Today I've been out to a neighbouring village for their annual horse fair. The event lasts all weekend and is similar to Appleby Fair in the UK. Lots of harnesses, horses, donkeys, mules and other things for sale. Loud music, beer tents and people trying to part you with your hard earned cash!

I did behave though and bought only a hat, I'd gone to see if I could find a nice driving bridle for Milka but didn't see what I was looking for. At least I didn't buy another horse though - there were some fabulous looking animals there and also a fair share of scrawny, overworked and under fed, poor looking horses who admittedly if I had pots of cash lying around I'd have been buying them by the handful just to try and rehabilitate them and show them that people can be kind.

Unfortunately I forgot to take the camera with me, it's becoming a habit that I must break. Horses of all shapes and sizes were gathered on a huge field amid carts, trucks and home made tents. Men milling about trying to show their animals off to potential buyers and others just looking for a bargain. Then there were the many stalls selling food, candy floss, kebabche and kufte and others. People selling bedding, toys, tools, hardware, fishing equipment, clothes and of course the usual tat that is often found at gatherings of this sort. The road to the fair ground is packed with stalls either side, people walking along the road and cars, trucks, horseboxes etc all trying to get either up the lane or down with not much space.

It was great to get out of the village for a while and although the weather still isn't great at least it stayed dry when we were there. The field was pretty muddy though and some of the people who've been staying there with their horses looked a little downheartened, but I wouldn't like to be camping in the rain either. Still there was a good atmosphere, friendly and upbeat. Luckily for us there were plenty of people about to help when we managed to get Nev's jeep stuck in mud, suddenly there were a lot more people pushing and trying to help and within minutes it was free and we were on our way home after saying thanks to those that had given us a hand.

Going out today and seeing all these horses has made me decide I really do need to motivate myself to get back in the saddle, so I'm hoping hubby will help me set up a temporary paddock tomorrow and then I can get my backside into gear and try to re-gain my riding confidence.........just need to let hubby know that I'd like him to do a job here at home, for me and not a client, I'll have a word with him when I go back downstairs lol.

So that was my day, how is your weekend going and do they always go to plan?

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Feeling Washed Out!

Today is a quiet, lazy and rather wet day. Overnight the rain started and hasn't let up at all since so we're stuck indoors wishing we could be outside getting on with various jobs. The worrying part is that this year has been so wet and not good for the crops, come winter there may be shortages and everyone in the area will be in the same boat, so prices will be driven up by short supplies and big demand. We are very lucky to have managed to get the 94 bales of lucerne off the field before the weather turned, but others face the prospect of the second cut of the year being ruined. 94 bales doesn't go far in winter time with all the animals we have so we're already planning on cutting down to ease the workload and make the feed last a little longer. Sorry piggys but some of you will be destined for our freezer!

Usually by this time of the year all of the grass has stopped growing and been scorched by the heat, giving the whole place a slightly golden look, crops have been cut and peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers etc are all producing well so we're eating a lot of salads. Tonight I'm making a pumpkin soup to warm us up a little, it's not exactly cold but with the dreary conditions outside you do tend to feel colder than normal. I won't be lighting the wood burner although I am wearing a long sleeved top and leggings instead of the summer wardrobe of shorts and a vest top!

It's days like this that are made for a good book and a comfy chair, but still I long to be in my garden pottering around as usual, listening to all of the sounds of summer and watching either the animals doing their own things or the mass of insects and local wildlife that are often found in my garden. Instead I'm indoors typing away and the only sound (apart from the tapping of the keyboard as I write this) is the never ending pitter patter of rain on the roof.  Strange that part of the reason we moved here was to be able to enjoy the long, hot summers that were rarely found back in the North East of England, and lately they've been basked in sunshine whilst we've been trudging about in mud, sludge and rain! Oh well, it can't always be sunshine, and for me at least, I know that the grass isn't always greener on the other side of the fence. At least for now the grass is actually still green here!

Monday, 5 July 2010

Hooray For Sunshine

After a weekend of thunder, lightning, rain and hailstones our Bulgarian sunshine has returned, and I've really missed it. Yesterday afternoon brought about a huge storm that had been threatening for hours and all we could do was sit tight and wait for it to stop. The poor animals were outside whilst hailstones pelted them for at least 15 minutes, the dogs, cat, chickens, pigs and turkeys could at least take shelter inside but the horses and Maggie the donkey had to turn their backs to the wind and put up with it. Stranger still is that our a friend of ours who works for the village corporation as security said there were no hailstones there and the place is only 5 minutes up the road on the opposite edge of the village! So I've not managed to get out and about to take some new photos for this blog yet.

Hubby came home on Friday with a borrowed pair of horse clippers (thanks Karen & Pete) and proceeded to almost scalp Sasha our Springer Spaniel and Molly, the gobby Cocker Spaniel! They had got pretty hairy and to be honest in this climate it's not too good for them. They seem to attract every seed head for miles and they end up tangled in their coats and causing huge knots. So it's much easier and better all round for them (and us) to clip the hair off for the warmer months. They do look rather strange at first though and do still need a bit of tidying up work done with the smaller clippers.

This afternoon I'm hoping to get the weeding finished that I started this morning and either pick some more plums (of a different variety) for jam making or strim the garden so I can actually see the veggies properly! Having a smaller vegetable patch this year has cut my work done by loads but has also meant that I'm putting weight on as my body is used to doing more physical work! It's a no win situation but I'll just have to cut my calorie intake and try to be more active to see if that helps. Still not having an enclosed paddock means I can't ride safely, otherwise I'd probably be able to shift a little weight and also tone up while exercising Maya. Maybe I can talk hubby into putting a day aside and getting it done for me.

Well it's time I best be getting on with some work, hopefully the weather has turned a corner and will stay nice for the rest of the summer and autumn.