On This Day 13th-October-2013

This week’s on this day post comes from the 13th-October-2013. I’m in Greece, nearing the end of my ride from England. It’s a scary day when some wild dogs set upon me.

Sunday 13th October 2013 – Kozani to Larisa. 81 miles.

It was a misty and murky start to the day, and I even put my lights on so I could be seen. But after an hour or two, as I climbed up another mountain, the sun came out and burnt off the morning mist. It remained lovely and sunny all day.

Bridge in fog
Servia High Bridge, Greece’s longest bridge

I was about three-quarters of the way up that 1000-metre climb when five dogs set upon me! Usually, I can outrun them, but not when I’m crawling up some mountain! One particularly aggressive dog, a massive white brute, even bit my bike and snagged one of my straps, nearly causing me to lose balance. Fortunately, I managed to maintain control and quickly stopped. Unwilling to linger with five snarling dogs circling me, I quickly resumed pedalling with all my strength. However, these persistent creatures refused to give up, especially the imposing white one. I attempted to deter them by throwing some bread I had, hoping it would divert their attention. No luck—they were solely fixated on me. As I endured a kilometre of being pursued by this pack, uncertainty crept in, unsure if I could sustain the little speed I had left. Thankfully, the road levelled out somewhat, allowing me to gather enough momentum to outrun them.

What A Relief

It was an unsettling experience, lasting approximately 20 minutes. While dogs chasing and barking at me was nothing new, this was the first time a dog had made physical contact. I must admit, it did shake me up a bit. Luckily, my bike and I emerged unharmed, so there was no lasting damage.

Later in the afternoon, I faced another big climb, although it was only 500 metres this time. As I came down the mountain, the landscape changed. All the mountains had disappeared, and it was nice and flat for the last 15 miles or so. It’s the first time I’ve not seen a mountain in my way in about four weeks.

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