This Greek college student biked 48 days to make it back home when flights were canceled

Canned sardines, a bike and a tent

Even after hundreds of miles into his two-wheel journey, Kleon Papadimitriou says he still wasn’t sure he’d make it home.

The 20-year-old Greek college student had been stuck in Scotland, where he studied, with no way to return to Athens while flights were shut down due to the pandemic.

So he decided to bike the roughly 2,175-mile route instead.

“It’s just now dawning on me how big of an achievement this was,” he says of his 48-day journey. “And I did learn a lot of things about myself, about my limits, about my strengths and my weaknesses. And I’d say I really hope that the trip inspired at least one more person to go out of their comfort zone and try something new, something big”.

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Papadimitriou, now about to embark on his third year of studies at the University of Aberdeen, says it was in the last few days of March when he decided to look for an earlier flight home, in hopes of beating the rapidly spreading effects of coronavirus across Europe. Most of his friends had already left, but he says he lingered back to make sure he wouldn’t miss any lessons. He booked three flights — but all were canceled.

“By the first of April I knew that I would spend at least the next month in quarantine in Aberdeen,” he said.

But then he got his idea.

Read more: CNN