2017 yearly roundup

A dramatic 2017 was the year of a very long hot summer after a dry winter, with very little rain for over 4 months and I was very aware of the forest fires that raged in Portugal and caused a lot of suffering. So when our mayor phoned me to tell me there was a…

2016 yearly roundup

After an easy winter and a dry start to 2016, the weather turned wet, with a rain shower almost every day until mid June. What followed though was the driest summer we’ve seen and our 13,000 litres of backup water storage wasn’t enough to keep us and our house low maintenance! Even now at the end…

Marrying the Old with the New

We feel incredibly lucky to have found our little piece of heaven in the Eastern Rhodope Mountains, a small but strong community village, frozen in a bygone era, and have embraced the old ways of living for health and happiness. Living a more rural way of life has many benefits but we’re glad we could bring…

Redressing the balance

At first glance, the view from our back garden is breathtaking. At second glance it’s still amazing but the heavy snowfall over 2 years ago caused lots of damage and is continuing to have an effect on this untouched area of outstanding natural beauty. The large patches of brown are not the Autumn colours of…

Responsible Forestry

The lack of human interference in these mountains is a charming quality. Wild animals make tracks us humans can use to explore the undisturbed scenery. The flora and fauna is rich in this biodiverse area, with many wild flowers, butterflies, birds, mushrooms, reptiles and animals. Before the car age, these mountains were inhabited by lots…

2015 yearly roundup

Another year has passed in the mountains and I’m pleased to report that after the wetter 2014, this summer was the expected ‘hot’ mediterranean heat that lasted for 3 months. Blue skies, bright sun and 38°C everyday. Lovely 🙂 Yes it was dry and a few times our mountain spring did not cope with the…

The Wizard of Wicked Mountain

Since our first visit to Bulgaria in 2006, there have been so many occasions where help and assistance is freely offered, often by complete strangers who refuse any recompense for their time given. The generosity of the people and strong community spirit helped us move here from UK in 2011 and since then, we have nothing but…

2014 yearly roundup

Another year on in the Eastern Rhodope Mountains, Bulgaria, and I’m still learning something new everyday, becoming more and more adaptable and expanding my DIY skills. Here’s a roundup of a few of the things that have occurred this year… 2014 has been another year where water has been a huge issue but this time…

Mountain Rescue

One day I was out walking with Jakal, our guardian dog, clearing one of the many walk routes around Melanya from fallen trees and overgrowth and also marking the way as there are many tracks that cross the path. I’d heard a storm approaching but thought I had time so carried on but the rain began….

Interesting Wildlife at Melanya Mountain Retreat

Our relatively short time in the Rhodope Mountains has been wonderful, discovering nature that is different to our experiences in England yet very familiar. The countryside is very similar to the UK with the four distinct seasons and the same species of trees including Oak, Walnut and Silver Birch. From our very first visit 6…

Wild Mushrooms

This year has been very dry with no rainfall for 3 months, a very hot summer and only 2 days rain since October. Winter came early and we had 2 days of snow in mid-October but they were just brief and it warmed up again but it still hasn’t rained. Luckily the morning dew has…