I had a tight deadline today, but also a full weekend of work ahead of me, so I decided I was best off going to Yablanitsa today, for a final trip to the market, since I’d have a better chance of getting lifts.
I had just passed the village limits when I heard a vehicle come up behind me and honk. I thought it was my chauffeur because of the van type, but no. It was a couple in a similar vehicle, which is a two seater… Let’s just say I’m glad I don’t carry my excess weight in my hips because the three of us just barely squeezed in!
They dropped me off just within the town limits, so I had a short stroll to the market. I hoped to pick up another pair of capris, but the lady wasn’t there today, the only time this has happened in all my visits to the market. Am I glad I at least got the pair I had on!
Produce was pretty usual today, but I did see some folks had cauliflower. I found a vendor who had nice tomatoes, but he was the kind who doesn’t let you pick out your own. “Kolko?” he asked me. It literally means “how,” but I’ve heard it used for “how many?” and “how much?” I said four, then amended it to five. I was very happy with the ones he picked out! I also got onions and carrots from him. I got potatoes and zucchini from another vendor who looked at me like I was a moron when I thought he told me my total was 1.20, I handed him as much, and asked if that was okay. He shook his head (which is a nod in Bulgaria) and again repeated what I thought was 1.20 before moving on to the next customer. So I’m guessing I heard right!
I was happy to do my final shop at the supermarket since I am really tired of buying and eating the same foods from there every week! I had a bit of a stumble when they were out of the two different jam brands they normally carry and the brand they had not only didn’t have clear pictures, but the writing was in lower case, which I haven’t mastered yet, and in a super fancy font. I was looking for strawberry, “yagodi,” which looks like this in “normal” Cyrillic: яагоди. Look at what the label has instead!
If I squint, I can see the Ya letter (“backwards R”) and the o is, of course, clear. But the hard g is sort of like a backwards s, the d looks like a g, and the i looks like a u! I think they just want to confuse the tourists!
My shopping was particularly heavy today so I was glad I’d come on market day since, surely, I’d get a lift home. So certain of this was I that I didn’t pace myself heading up the hill out of town to the junction where I usually get lifts. Hmm. No cars today. Okay, maybe by the underpass. Nope… I got all the way to the village turnoff, with 2KM left to go, and thought surely I’d get a lift at this point. I even properly stuck out my thumb a few times, to no avail. By the time I limped into Malak Izvor, I was pretty annoyed with myself for having started off so fast since I had barely enough energy to get up the hill to home!
But I made it! I put my shopping away, then pulled out a tin of sardines I’d bought for the pets as a treat. Normally, Mechka and Penghu each go for a bowl and Sausage gets the tin. But today, Sausage went for a bowl. I put the tin down for Mechka and was very amused when she picked it up and carried it over to the far side of the yard to enjoy her treat in peace!
This was my last trip into Yablanitsa. If I need anything in the next week, I can get it at the village shop. I thought I was leaving next Friday, but it’s actually going to be Thursday (it was always going to be the 22nd, I just messed up the day of the week) and I have to be out of Bulgaria on Saturday. So this time next week, I could very well be in Serbia!