NA’s Story

I was cycling up the Lagan tow path around 5pm on a Sunday evening. It had just started raining, but I decided to continue on up to Lisburn as I hadn’t been up that far before. As I approached the bit where Tullynacross Road intersects the tow path, I saw this guy with a bike and his hood up standing on the other side of the road, under the trees. I assumed he was getting shelter from the rain, and kept going. After a few minutes I started worrying about how much further it was going to be, and the rain was getting heavier. So I stopped at a little area under a tree which was sheltered to text my friend who is from Lisburn to see if he knew.

The guy on the bike came past me, and then stopped a little further up the path. I could hear him talking on his phone. Then I went past him, walking because I didn’t want to cycle through the heavy rain, and when I got a bit further past him, I heard him wolf whistle at me. Then about 15 seconds later he did it again. I didn’t want to shout back, look back or even acknowledge him because I felt very vulnerable as we were alone on the path, and knowing that he also had a bike, I wouldn’t be able to get away from him quickly by cycling off. I just walked a bit further and then got back on my bike and started cycling.

I felt worried that he would try to follow me… after another few minutes I saw a jogger up ahead so I waited until I got past him, stopped and texted my friend to tell him what just happened. As I was doing this the guy on the bike cycled on past me. I hoped that would be him gone… but then when I started cycling again, I noticed he had come back a little and stopped up ahead and was facing my direction. He turned his bike sideways slightly as I approached as if to say he wanted me to stop. He asked me if I had the time. I stopped and looked at my watch and told him it was nearly half 5. He said thanks and I cycled on…

More creeped out by this stage, my friend wasn’t texting back and I knew the guy had his phone with him so why was he asking me for the time?? I worried he was still following me and I didn’t know how much further it was until I got to Lisburn.

Luckily there were more people on the path and then I started seeing buildings up ahead and knew I was close.

But as I got to the end of the tow path, I wasn’t sure where to go from there.. I went towards the barrier at the edge of the car park on the left, which was down, so I got off my bike to get around the side of it. I looked behind me… and there he was, cycling VERY slowly, watching me… I just kept walking, up towards Gregg Road or something… and he was still following me. Then my friend called me and I asked him where to go to get to the train station. The guy cycled on past.. but after a few minutes came back down again…. My friend told me I needed to go back down the way I had come and get to the other side of the river to get to the city centre. I started going back and in the distance I could see the guy, but he was thankfully cycling away from me so I just went really slowly until I was sure he was gone.

Really really creepy and not what I expected at all for my first experience cycling to Lisburn. Was really enjoying the cycle until this happened. Creepazoid.