Natalie writing again. Note about yesterday: Pete took two naps, and then he was still able to go to bed at 9pm and sleep fine. That’s what these rest days are for!

Slept quite well, although warmer (no breeze). (So far Pete has only taken one nap today.) 

My 56th birthday! Fun to get so many birthday wishes :-) 

Early morning, a bit of planning and discussing for the coming week’s ride. We have booked Airbnbs until we reach Matt’s house on Friday. There were few options for Wednesday and Thursday night so we decided to commit to our mileage for each day. We’ll have a 90+ mile day tomorrow, less on Wednesday, and then Thursday is our big climb through the mountains. Low mileage but high effort.

Morning bakery birthday run: 2 chocolate croissants, one raisin roll pastry, and the big splurge = a raspberry tarte. Delicious of course!

Strasbourg bus ride. Went inside the beautiful cathedral this time and spent a while. Very, very beautiful and amazing. Totally lucked out with our timing: we essentially walked right in, but when we left there was a very very long line. Then we walked to the Parc de l’Orangerie and strolled for a while, taking photos of pretty stuff and also just people watching. We enjoy beautiful city parks. It was a rather hot, sunny day, so we also enjoyed the shade.

New paragraph for the big birthday lunch: found an all-vegan café called Vélicious. Turned out to be excellent! First Pete had a super yummy gazpacho (cold veggie soup) and I had a yummy tomato mozzarella salad. (Remember everything is vegan and also we shared everything.) For the entrée, Pete had boeuf bourguignon (“beef,” mushrooms, carrots, potatoes all in yummy sauce) and rice. I had a tartare made of eggplant, beet, seitan, and I forget what else, plus roasted potatoes. Everything was artistically beautiful and seriously delicious. Then for dessert we shared a very yummy thick chocolate brownie with nuts and an amazing piece of black forest cake (non-alcoholic version). All so good! And classic French sidewalk café ambiance on a summer afternoon. 

Found a grocery store as we strolled to the bus stop, grabbed a few more items. Bus “home,” showers, and now we’re relaxing and kinda beginning to pack up for tomorrow. 

Fun birthday! Cool to be with Pete in a beautiful, interesting place, on a rest day of a big adventure. Also cool to have the technology to connect easily with so many people we love. 

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