Revamping our Bulgarian summer kitchen

by | Sep 28, 2023 | House & renovations, Gardening bore | 0 comments

Delighted as we were with our rustic summer kitchen, I’ve been itching to give it a final zhuzh over the last year or two. We needed more worktop space. Part of the stone floor was too wibbly and uneven (and that’s saying something, since everything in our house and garden is wonky). We never got around to pointing the stonework years ago. And I wanted to paint a couple of the stone walls white (down the dining end, which gets the least light), just to brighten things up a bit.

So that’s what we’ve been busy with this summer. Pointing the stonework with cement, painting walls, relaying some of the flagstones, making new worktops, and (to make space for the new worktops) rebuilding the cob pizza oven in a slightly different spot. Rob also revamped the dining table, giving it an inlay of white and blue tiles, which further helps to brighten up that end.

I even did quite a bit of pointing myself and it turns out I’m not too terrible at it. (If you’re new here, you’ll soon learn that I’m of the planning, list-loving, clipboard-queen ilk rather than the getting-stuck-in ilk. Rob is the designated DIYer around here. But I like to think he’d be lost without my lists.)

And as usual, we moved most of our houseplants out for the summer and autumn months (it’s their annual holiday). If you ever want to make an outdoor seating/dining area feel more luxurious, just bung some houseplants around. It’s amazing how much they transform an area, and ours love living outside for half the year. (Probably because our house is a cave. A cosy cave, but a cave nonetheless.)

Enough words, I know what you’re here for: photos, photos, photos. Please enjoy these pics of our revamped summer kitchen. (And yes, I’ve got a lot better at photography since I last photographed it.)

Click to view as a slideshow…

Now all I need is for my noisy neighbours to shut the fuck up for a while, so we can enjoy this space without hearing the sounds of metal cutting and/or loud music. Yes, one neighbour seems to have started a metal-cutting business in his back garden and has been noisily cutting and banging metal from 8am to dusk seven days a week (this has been going on for two solid months so I can’t believe it’s a DIY project). And our elderly neighbour on the other side was recently given a portable speaker by his son, so he blares his folk music while he’s working in the garden.

Whoever said the countryside was peaceful has never been to Bulgaria.

Seriously though, any tips for dealing with noisy neighbours? The music-blaring neighbour isn’t so much of an issue as we’re on good terms with him and just ask him to turn it down. Plus, I know he’s got the attention span of a five-year-old and will soon forget about (or even better, lose) his latest toy. But the metal-cutting neighbour is more of an issue. We’re not on great terms with them since they poisoned two of our cats this summer (that’s a whole other story), so a friendly chat isn’t an option. Would you get the mayor involved? Is it even legal to run a noisy business from a residential village property?


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