Chione, Goddess of Snow, was not pleased with us. Aidan and I had abandoned Kris at the boat, and were driving into the Troodos mountains in search of ski and snowboard runs. It had been an easy run from Latsi, and we were approaching the last 10 kms before the resort. We rounded a corner when the car, completely unexpectedly, slid sideways around the bend. All my driving skills to the fore – I remembered not to brake, and managed to regain control of the car under power.
I stopped on the verge, and Aidan and I shared a “that was scary” moment. But the rest of the road seemed clear, so we headed onwards, just a fraction more slowly and carefully.
About half a kilometer on, a pickup truck coming from Troodos waved us down and reported that they had turned around as the road was too bad. The chap looked at our little hire car (automatic nogal), and firmly declared that we would never make it through.
Not ones to give up easily, Aidan and I decided to see for ourselves. One bend further, and we found 3 cars stopped in the road. We parked safely on the verge, and walked up to where they were stopped. More slipping and sliding than walking; there was absolutely no purchase on the icy road.
Aidan, of course, wanted to “try”. One small boy can put a lot of pressure on a parent, and I might have tried to drive the road in a manual. But an automatic, with limited control of low gear, on roads that are more ice than tar, just sounded like hell. Summonsing all my parental firmness, I declared our skiing trip abandoned. Chione 1 us 0.
We turned back for lower ground, and ended up visiting Nicossia, the capital of Cyprus. Showing up our South Africaness, we thoroughly enjoyed the big Ikea store in Nicossia 🙂 Lots of cute accessories, and all incredibly cheap. Aidan’s favourite activity was opening all the drawers in the demo kitchens to see all the space saving and clever storage ideas!
We hung around Nicossia until 7pm to see a bicycle that I was interested in. The local equivalent of Gumtree is called Bazaraki, and a rather nice hybrid bicycle was being offered for sale. The owner clearly loved his bike, and it was beautifully maintained. The seat was slightly too high for me, even when fully lowered, but was otherwise perfect. We bought the bike, and squashed it into the little hired car for the drive back to Latsi.
We’ve spent the last few days buying accessories and lowering the seat, and now Aidan and I ride all over the district on our bicycles. The hire car has been returned, and good riddance! I’m sure we will be much healthier for using our legs to get around – that’s if I can keep up with Aidan!