6

Walking to live

nordic-walking-300x300Just before November 2016 I decided that I had been a couch potato long enough. Life was slipping past at an alarming rate and I was getting older and older.

I had never before considered age as anything..it just happened…

Then one day it suddenly occurred to me that as I was getting older so my body and bones were beginning to stiffen up.

This was bad news!  I had to do something ! so I did..

As I no longer drive, going to a gym was not possible, not only was it expensive but I had no way of getting there without asking Neville to come every time… so although I wanted to be more active what was there that I could do. I considered walking but I hate walking. Yes I can peruse the shop windows at a leisurely pace but to actually walk anywhere was a big NO NO…  until

I discovered Nordic Walking which is similar but not the same. It is done with two poles very much like ski poles but not so long. There is a method to be understood otherwise all benefits are lost. Why this idea intrigued me I shall never know..walking is walking

It is cardiovascular exercise , sort of similar to Power Walking but with extra benefits and no getting out of puff.  Most suitable for an elderly person like myself . It builds muscles in arms, legs, chest and back…it increases vitality, helps you to sleep and livens up the brain… and as for your blood …  its.wonderful

The day i bought my Nordic poles  my life changed. Now it is thrilling to walk and to walk..to wander paths which might lead somewhere or nowhere at all. To see the lovely village which I now call home, and to see how it is surrounded by the most glorious countryside. To listen to birds and to see wild creatures scurrying back into the bushes for safety. One of the greatest benefits is meeting people…like the shepherd I met this morning . He left his flock and came to talk to me…no language problem at all..he nattered in Bulgarian and me in my  Bulgengish..but we understood each other completely.

Two days ago I stopped to rest upon the seat outside a house and the people came to talk. I explained what I was doing and why I was doing it. Baba of the house showed me her sticks( a crutch and walking stick) and she explained that she had had a hip and leg operation…we nattered away in our own language and completely understood.

Its a fascinating way of life.. I go on my way armed with my fanny bag containing a walkie talkie….a whistle..binoculars..sun glasses..water  and my mp4 player.

Sometimes I have even danced my way along, and sometimes I sing….it is a time of complete happiness and of complete freedom and it is wonderful.

By the time I get home there are one or two bits that ache..but my blood pressure is down, and I feel great. There are so many benefits to just walking and even though at 77 years of age i might have left it a bit late but I know that the time that I have left will be spent walking the hills, looking at God’s creation and thoroughly enjoying my life.

So if you are like me…a couch potato..get up..and go walking the Nordic way..you will never regret it

5

New Year , New Me

T.here comes a time when you sit back and look at what you have done with your life. I have reached that time. At 77 I am on the slippery slope going nowhere, well I shall be going somewhere but not on this planet.

so to look at my life..it has been one of adventure. At times boring and at times very troublesome but its like stepping into the unknown as none of us know what is around each corner…and this is what keeps me going…wanting to look around one corner after another.

But this year is different. I have not made any New Year resolutions as that way they cannot be broken.Last November time I decided to change the way I am….which is overweight and under exercised. Unfortunately we are not one of the rich retired people who I often read about so there was no going to the local Health Hotel and to the local gym..both too costly. So..I decided on walking (which i detested). I bought myself a set of Nordic Walking poles and walking shoes and an instruction book..oh and a mp4 player.

So far I have lost one stone and I enjoy my walking..even to the point of asking  ;why didn’t I do this before?’Sometimes when I return home , my muscles ache and my arthritis in my kneecap really does hurt but I will not give in…No pain ,No gain (

It has decreased my blood pressure and increased my muscles…I am now a converted walker. It is wonderful wandering the hills and paths just to see where they go. It’s great to hear the birds and when you stand still and look at just how wonderful the scenery is. It’s the peace and tranquility…its the challenge to go, to walk , to be free.

Of course there is a downside to all of this. I purchased some cropped trousers which I had to alter as the legs were too wide but now I find that the waist is too big…and there’s the problem…I am shrinking!..but before i go buying anymore I shall wait until I have reached a sensible level , not quite sure what size I should be but that does not bother me…it is whether the clothes will stay up by themselves or will I keep having to hike them up….

But whilst I am having fun and living my remaining years with gusto I shall not worry and whilst I am here ..may I wish you all a year 2017 to be one that you will remember with love

lots of love

Patrecia

PS..just in case you wondered about my furry creatures..all are well. Bonzo that I rescued as a wee pup has grown into an enormous hound who annoys  everyone but he has lovely eyes..

3

Just as I thought

The little pup is dead….

Today we braved the snow and ice and went to feed the dogs…

.Just as we reached the top of our village road there was a Mum dog and two chubby pups following her but they were on the other side of what can be quite a busy road.

I asked Neville to stop and after a tut or two he did. I got out of the car and from the back took a packet of dog biscuits..plus my walking stick..the snow was quite deep and slushy but the stick came in better use to stop the traffic . An old lady with a waving walking stick does make cars stop.

I went across the road and placed the food on the snow and Mum began to eat whilst the pups plonked their fat little bottoms on the snow and watched…

It was sad when we got to the water hole in Draganovo. No dog at all!..I called and called. We hooted the horn and revved the engine….but nothing.

Considering that it has been so cold with the temperature last night at -17, a very heavy frost and there has been lots of snow I am not really surprised that pup has possibly died ….I feel sure that had he been alive he would have appeared…maybe I am wrong!

So Rexy got two lots of food which he thoroughly enjoyed. There are tyre tracks in the snow so someone has been there and maybe fed him..if not then he had a full course today.he is such a lovely dog..I just wish he were mine!

So there we have it…it is sad but in a way i am relieved… because we live so far away it would not always be possible to be there to feed him and then what would I have done in the months ahead…I cannot possibly  be responsible for all the stray dogs in the world so maybe in this case the Good Lord  made the decision

2

I hope that I am wrong…

…..But I sadly fear that the little pup that I have fed in Draganovo may be dead.

I have not been to see it but the last time it was fed was on Tuesday when my friend Karen had to go that way.He is only tiny , very skinny and not much fur to keep him warm

Since Tuesday it has snowed again and again, the road in our village has not been cleared and it is like an ice rink. Every night the temperature plummets and I think of the wee creature out there in the snow with no food and no shelter. It makes me feel very sad.

As sad as I feel I cannot risk our lives on the roads such as they are,

However tomorrow the sun is supposed to shine and on Saturday so maybe we shall be able to go to find out. The other dog Rex is ok, I am sure of that. He has a thick coat and he is an adult  dog who has lived through Bulgarian winters, also his owner comes to feed him..at least I hope so.

I shall just have to wait to find out…

 

2

Not again!

I would not believe this  if I could not see it for myself..IT’S SNOWING AGAIN!!!

I thought is would be rain but it’s definitely the white stuff.

However we have been out to Veliko Tarnovo to collect our four pairs of new specs and at the same time I was able to feed the dogs again

There was still no sign of the other dog but the pup was there before the car had stopped so was rewarded with some food..cake bits, bread and milk

Rexy came just as soon as we pulled up and sniffed at his food offering …then he walked off. He is far more interested in having a cuddle and a fuss so I gave him both . He looks so dejected when we leave  but he did eat all his food as it was gone when we came back

So shopping done yesterday, VT done and sorted plus a visit to Metro, dogs all fed and accounted for (except one)…so let it snow..I have nowhere to go until Tuesday.

 

here is a picture of Holly and BobbyCIMG0208

2

All seems to be well

 

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It has finally stopped snowing, and the sun is shining so all the snow is quickly thawing but tomorrow we can expect rain which will possibly freeze later in the night.

So today was the day  we went shopping and it also gave me the opportunity to see if my stray dogs were safe.  So I packed two bags of scraps that I have been saving..one enough for the two dogs at the water hole and one just for Rexy at the wood yard.

When we got to Draganovo…. where the dog and puppy live , the snow was too thick for me to walk in so I called ‘Dog!, Dog Dog’ and out from the hillside appeared the puppy, so I put down the food ( which was for two dogs) but the other dog never arrived.

What has happened to him I do not know but it seems that throughout the very cold weather this small skinny pup has managed to survive…We left him devouring a pile of food.

We arrived at the wood yard but there was no sign of Rexy. There were four or five men fiddling with a  vehicle inside the gate so I called and asked where Rexy was…. Eventually Rexy emerged from the great barn but was not over joyed to see me until he realised who it was and that I had food. He is such a gentle kind dog and if he is supposed to be a guard dog, I think he has not read the manual about being aggressive or at least appearing to be so…

So all is ok except that the dog who was with the puppy was not there, but 2 out of 3 is good news. We shall be going that way again in the next day or two so maybe I shall see all three then…but for the moment I am happy that all seems to be well

4

It is cold bbrrrr!!!

12443520_211215375891965_1882113465_oIt is very very cold here in Bulgaria and there is masses of snow. It reminds me of the first winter we were here when the snow was piled high against the wall, and I got chilblains on my toes . I had to use sellotape to keep on what bandage I had. It was not a good time…but this time we are better prepared!

download 3Neville has been outside most days clearing the paths so that the cats can go to the toilet and the dogs can see where they are going. For the larger dogs like Max, Missy and Bonzo the snow is no problem …..but for the smaller ones like Holly, Bobby and Charlie ….they have to bounce up and down to see where they are going..its really rather comical.Like Jack-in-the-Box..up!down!up! down…

download 2It all looks very beautiful but the roads are lethal and like an ice rink so therefore unless life or limb are in danger it is best to wait.Daytime temperatures are -10/-15   and at night it drop dramatically . Five humans have died of the cold in the south of Bulgaria

BUT!!! I have stray dogs waiting for food and I cannot get to them. I think about this all the time….I would imagine that the very small pup under the trash bin in Dolna Oryahovitsa is dead by now . There is no way that it could have survived in these conditions.

And I hope that the man who owns Rexy the Karackachan living in the disused wood yard would have had the sense to go to feed his dog…but at least Rexy had some shelter even though it was a big drafty barn..also he had a good thick coat

However.. i wonder about the two dogs at Draganovo water hole ..there is no shelter and no food . The pup was skinny and not very old..These two worry me the most as the humans that live nearby are gypsies who probably threw them out in the first place so they would not feed them.

It is impossible to get the car there as it would put our own lives in danger…so they will have to survive without my help and this really does upset me..

To end on a lighter note..if I had a drone I could airlift food to them..Amazon ..where are you when i need you?

We shall survive and hopefully so will my stray dogs