We slept great last night. In the morning we woke up and ate another big hotel breakfast. We were riding before 9 AM. There is something a little bit different about being on a trail that you are somewhat familiar with. The time seems to go slightly faster. 

One thing I did on this segment that I haven’t done before was to turn off my speedometer. Sometimes I get so focused on our progress and our speed and when we’re going to arrive that I fail to enjoy the journey. So to try to keep that out of my head, I just put my bike computer on map mode and removed all of the other statistics from the screen. I think it helped. I found myself far less worried about how fast we were going and instead mostly just observed nature as we rode. As we moved west, the city suburbs gave way to more rural small towns and farms. Since it is a Saturday, there were far more riders, runners, and walkers on the trail. A few cyclists rode along with us for a while now and then, curious about our bike and our travels. It is fun to be able to swap stories and experiences with the people we meet.

The weather was very nice today, with highs in the mid 80s and no rain. There was lots of shade on the trail as we rode. I had set up our stay for Saturday and Sunday nights before we started our ride. That removed flexibility from today. Had we not prearranged a place to stay, we probably would’ve tried to go further. But it was nice to not have to worry about finding accommodations. At a little before 2 PM we rode into Washington, Missouri, and found our Airbnb, which is an entire two-story house. It is 115 years old and wonderfully restored. It has air conditioning, but it is set up with airflow such that the air conditioning hasn’t been necessary so far. Plus, we’ve gotten used to being out in the weather, so being inside at 75° doesn’t feel hot anymore. I think we’ve acclimated.

After we unloaded our gear we rode about two more miles to go to a grocery store. Once again we purchased a lot. We brought two panniers this time and filled them both. It is mostly healthy food, and lots of stuff to drink. We find that on these long rides having fruit juice and flavored water makes a huge difference. The house also has a washing machine in the basement. And so we were able to do laundry. Our bike is in the basement next to the laundry machines.

We are excited for a day of rest tomorrow. Ideally we would’ve had another day or two to ride, as it looks like rainy weather is coming in Monday and possibly also Tuesday and Wednesday, and it would be nice to be further toward our destination prior to the rain hitting. But we will be fine.

Our stomachs are full, our legs are tired, and we are in a comfortable location together. Life is good.

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Rest day in Washington