Klagenfurt, Austria to Ljubljana, Slovenia: The End is Near

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A misty morning ride through a gentle maze of hayracks (kozolci) outside Adergas, Slovenia.

Day Nine: Adergas, Slovenia to Ljubljana, Slovenia

On our last two-wheeled sojourn through Slovenia (tear), the clouds hung low in the morning like a damp curtain from behind which curious angels watched our progress. However, the sun popped out just in time to escort us into the modest metropolis of Ljubljana.

Unfortunately, with about 20 kilometers to go, one of our clients bike wheels became entangled in some particularly nasty railroad tracks. By the time I arrived with the rest of the group, he’d been loaded into an ambulance. A good Samaritan in the form of a truck driver witnessed it, called the ambulance and jumped out to block and direct traffic. It was a tense situation on the side of a busy road with only passing cars and stinging nettles for company. The rest of the gang, understandably, was shaken up and it took a bit of time to get the wheels turning smoothly again.

However, the remainder of the afternoon unfolded pleasantly for the remainder of the gaggle which followed chalk arrows through a still scenic but more complicated entry (bike paths, crosswalks and clogged intersections) into the city of Ljubljana.

Tour leader life proceeded as usual at the four-star hotel in the heart of the bustling city: the bikes’ new home was down a spiraling parking garage corridor full of stale air and helpful staff in tailored vests. Eventually, we reached a creepy metal door marked with a crooked “X.” Behind, a towering heap of dirty linen bags devoured most of the room (which I immediately christened Crap Mountain). Crap Mountain, despite its soiled origins, actually seemed — to our tired tour leader brains — like a decent place for a nap.

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Cristina summits Crap Mountain.

Blaz returned from the hospital in the midst of our trek up Crap Mountain and we discovered our fallen friend had broken his left collarbone and elbow — poor guy! Hasty plans were made for him and his wife to travel home late that night so he could have surgery at home in California. We tour leaders — and one other client, the Australian Gary, in a show of solidarity — woke up at 1:45 a.m. to send them groggily off.

But well before that moment, the day progressed as usual for the rest of the wolf pack; after much-needed showers, the gang met in the lobby for a walking tour of Ljubljana, timed perfectly for the golden glow of sunset. Afterwards, a delectable farewell dinner underneath the castle on the hill — and much later, victory drinks for the tour leaders high up in a sky scraper, where we drank beer and honey schnapps with the stars :).

If you haven’t yet filled up on the Sylva Lining, don’t fret! I’ve been firing most of these blogs off from somewhere in Croatia (and this last one while still slightly jet-lagged back at home in CO). Translation: more pictures and tales to come shortly!

Now for the standard teaser, from outside (and still far above) Bol, Croatia, on which the next blogs will elaborate:

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Peace, love and bike touring.

One Reply to “Klagenfurt, Austria to Ljubljana, Slovenia: The End is Near”

  1. I remember getting caught in railroad tracks in Ft. Collins with a backpack full of groceries! I fell, scraped myself up, bent my glasses and broke all the eggs. The bicycle rim ended up bent so I had to walk home. A bummer, but not nearly as bad as what your poor client went through!

    Another story–we know someone who was on a bike tour in Italy and broke her arm. She ended up going to a hospital there and it only cost $140 to patch her up (included x-rays, doctor setting her arm in a cast, etc).

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