Today was cold! Brrr. Especially this morning. I appreciated going up hills today, because the extra effort resulted in my toes defrosting. :-) Despite the cold, the morning was pretty easy riding, with just the right amount and slope of hills to keep things interesting. I'm pretty sure the winds are on my side.
I think today I did about 70km, which must be the longest distance in a day on this trip so far. It didn't seem too difficult. I think the most tiring part is arriving in or leaving the city, at the end or beginning of the day, navigating the city traffic. Once out of the city, it's smooth riding for hours. I think I can do 15-20km in one hour in the country, and sometimes it can take an hour just to do 7-10km in the city, especially if I walk part of the way to avoid traffic. Maybe I should stay in smaller cities / villages instead of these medium-large cities, to maximize the pleasant portion of the riding time. Of course in small villiages there are fewer eating and sleeping options :-)
On the road today I saw a less shy horse, some ducks and geese, a bit of forest, the Seine river, and of course miles and miles of fields. Also a couple of dogs, some cute and friendly, and some who succeeded in communicating " this is my house, keep your distance" :-)
At noon, I took a minor detour looking for a grocery store, but I happened upon a Turkish restaurant. It was barely noon and the restaurant was completely full. It must be the only Turkish restaurant in the region or something. In Paris, these restaurants are everywhere. I did get a seat and enjoyed a serving of lamb, fries, and salad.
I decided to stay at hotel F1 tonight. This is a chain of extremely cheap hotels. I thought it would be like Motel 6, but it's actually more like a dormitory (or how I imagine a dorm, as I never actually lived in one) . The room has a sink but the bathrooms and showers are common. It's slightly inconvenient but it seems clean enough :) I might stay in an F1 again sometime, but I think tomorrow I won't go for the cheapest one :-) We'll see what's available in Chartres.
For dinner, I had McDonald's. Nothing like a big mac to wind down the day.