When my boss at work told me to curb my enthusiasm I knew it was time for a change. So in June 2015 my partner and I bought a house in Gradishte, in the district of Pleven in Bulgaria. Well a shell of a house, pictured above, with almost 3/4 acre of land, outbuildings in a state of ruin, a barn conversion, a summer kitchen, a well and a compost privy. It’s been empty for 5 years and has had everything ripped out of it. It is going to take an awful lot of work but it’s beautiful and it will allow both of us to follow our dreams. I want to be self sufficient and Terry wants to tinker with cars. We can’t move until early next year and we have to have space for our family to stay especially William aged 4 who I know will love it. We’re off this Friday at the ungodly hour of 02:30 to see our house, to fix the roof, secure the doors and get the water and electricity connected. We are driving the Transit over, packed to the beams with equipment to fix the house and some things to leave too. We’ve never driven across Europe before so I will be updating as we go on how it went and how much it cost. That’s what we would have liked to know before we set off. We’ve been told that France, Belgium. Germany, Austria, Hungary, Romania and into Bulgaria is the best route. Serbia, we are informed, is a troublesome if you’re driving a van. We have loaned Mom and Dads super sexy Sat Nav to replace our somewhat dowdy Sat Nav Madge who refuses to update European maps and I have a list of Vignettes that need to purchased and in what countries. Nervous? Hell yes!
The old original house with a semi basement and an enormous hearth that at one point heated the entire house
The summer kitchen with a bread oven and a stone sink inside and an outside eating area that would have been shaded by the vines