It was a late start to the day, leaving Nasta’s place at around 10am. The winds however were blowing in my favour. A stiff tailwind and a light bike propelled me more than 100km, to an under construction overpass near Edessa. I continued to sense the change in the seasons, cycling past orchards in full bloom.
It was just before the under construction overpass that I had my most frightening experience with dogs. I spied what I thought was a small side road, running parallel to the main road. Being the ‘side road lover’ that I am, I headed for it via a dirt road running through an orchard.
Just as I came up to a rise in the road, a dog started barking. A second later, the barks of four other dogs. The pack came over the rise towards me, inching closer, barking threateningly. I yelled back at them, but they continued to come towards me. I was too petrified to turn the bike around and run, and soon the dogs were right at my feet.
One snapped at my leg, ripping my trousers. I stood up, dropping the bike and grabbing the neck of the dog that snapped at me. I snatched my water bottle from the bike, and was about to try squirting the dogs with water, when a farmer came running up over the rise, hearing my frantic shouts. One short snap at the dogs, and the farmer had the dogs backing away.
I stood there shaking, blabbering that I wanted to get to the road. The farmer was not impressed, and waved me to go. As I was leaving I noticed that the ‘road’ I was intent on getting to was in fact the railway. I felt like an idiot. It appears that I was on his land, so I guess I was asking for it.
Once under the overpass, I had my first opportunity to try out my Coffee Can stove. With the roads so smooth and so easy these days, I need something to think about during the day. The Coffee Can Stove was it.
The Mark 1 version went OK. I managed to cook some pasta and soup in 1 and a half hours. It needs some serious improvements in the air intake and outlet areas. The stove runs on any kind of solid fuel. If I can get the stove to work well, then I could save up to 1kg over the MSR Whisperlight liquid fuel stove I have.
The bottom photo is with me blowing into the air intake at the bottom of the stove. Expect some improvements to follow.