Tuesday 02.10.2001 - Crash

Kolimbia - Archangelos - Lindos - Gennadi
76,0 km
138,5 km


While looking for the coastal road heading south, we immediately take the wrong one. Good start of the day actually.
Once we get back on track the first stop is Tsambiki-beach, one of the most beautiful beaches on Rhodes according to the brochures. A long and steep descent brings us to the gorgeous beach. With a broad grin on our faces we rush by the scooters that passed us right before the descent.


Besides a sandy beach there's nothing much to see here. We cool down our heads under the beach shower and resume our journey. But of course the fabulous descent has transformed itself into a very tough climb!
Back at the top, we visit a chapel that's being watched over by a little old Greek woman. She lets us in and points to the small money tray and a pile of candles. We got the message and put some change in the tray to light a candle.


We leave the coastal road again for our next stop: Stegna. While following the long descent, we realize what's going to be waiting for us here later on. Right! Another tough climb!
In Stegna we hang around for a while. We cruise by the coast and rest a while at a calm spot on the beach where we enjoy the beautiful view and the turquoise water.


Back in the village we find a beautiful pavement cafe where we can refill our energy levels.
We overran the break a bit, and since we have done only 15 km there's still a lot of work to do. After the long climb back up we cross the coastal road and then we head for Malonas and Masari along some very quiet small roads with a landscape filled with olive trees. Just before Kalathos we're back on the busy coastal road heading for Lindos.

Lindos is an important destination for excursions and so you can already see the busses from a long way back.
We ride through a labyrinth of picturesque alleys and try to find a way to the Acropolis between all the tourists. The last piece of the climb is a very steep and bad cobbled street, but we don't give up and try to stay on the bikes. We're lucky to have triple gears on our MTB. Alain almost gets sandwiched between two donkeys and only Gert can keep his balance on this though climb.
At the top we take some time to catch our breath and to look at all the donkeys that are coming up the hill, each one of them with a tourist on their back. The donkeys seem to have an automatic pilot built-in because at a sign of their masters they turn back down alone. We go to the Acropolis entrance, search for the entrance fee in our wallets and then we read the opening hours. Closing time is 16u40, and at that moment it is 16u46!
Alas, it's too late and, although we try to change his mind, the stubborn gatekeeper will not let us in. Even the tourists that are still coming up on the donkeys face a closed door.
So no Acropolis.


We turn back to the coastal road and continue our journey to today's finish: Gennadi.
During one of the descents on a wide and fast road our journey almost takes a dramatic turn. We're going roughly 50 km/h when we see about 200 m further on a child crossing the road. And just at the moment that we're about to pass him he suddenly turns around and without looking he runs back on the street. In a split-second reflex we swerve around him and miss him by a hair!
The sudden shot of adrenaline makes Piet shout a curse at the boy that makes the village roar on its foundations. Everyone could feel that curse was coming from the tips of his toes!
If we would have hit him at that speed, the consequences would have been disastrous.

A small miscalculation makes the last piece to Gennadi 10 km longer than foreseen. Alain has almost no energy left in him, but he hangs on. It's just before dark when we arrive in Gennadi.

The restaurants at the coast are a bit deserted, most of the tourists are already gone. We haven't found a place to sleep yet, but the friendly owner of one of the restaurants makes a quick phone call and arranges a room for us by the sea. Excellent!
We take a quick plunge in the sea by the rising moon and then we go eat at the restaurant that helped us get a room. You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours...

Looking out onto the sea, with a few delicious Greek dishes and a good bottle of wine we review the day and enjoy this blissful moment. The main topic of conversation is of course the close encounter with the boy and the resulting enormous curse from Piet.
After a while the friendly owner comes to tell us that he is closing for today, but we don't have to leave yet, no problem!
We empty our glasses of wine and ride back to our room in a moonlit night.
Good night.

Rising moon