Sunday, May 13, 98 k
The alarm goes off at 6:45 am. I pack, shower and am out the door by 7:30 am. I stop for breakfast at the highway roadhouse; it's already 8:15 am when I'm finally riding.

I stop to take a picture of the late season snow in the mountains. I'm noticing a headwind. With nothing else to think about, I fixate on how long it takes to get from alarm to riding - it was an hour and a half this morning! Gotta tighten that up. There's not a cloud in the sky - that's nice. The TV last night showed rain logos next to all sorts of city names that I didn't recognize. I assumed that this region was somewhere referenced.

I'm moving well. The headwind may become something of the tailwind once I headed east, at Cay. I'm making good time, and am at Aksehir at 11:30. I have no intentions of stopping this early in the day, and at a gas station I learn that both Kadinhani, another 73 k from here, and Ilgin, only 42 k from here, have hotels. Either one means I'm in Konya tomorrow for my rest day.

At midday I stop for a leisurely lunch: stuffed bell peppers, rice and a few Colas. It's one of the lessons from the Mark-ride: a good eat and a rest in the middle of the day may be a smart investment.

At around 3pm I make it to Ilgin. Finding the hotel is tricky. I ignore some roadside hotel signs pointing down a side road, and continue biking towards town. A few kilometers later, I get directions to take a right, then another right, and then travel about 2 kilometers. I follow these directions, and sure enough, come to a massive hotel complex on one side of the road, and a smaller hotel on the other side of the road. I select the smaller hotel, assuming that it has to be cheaper, and am very pleased to pay 30 TL for a very clean room with thermal weaters, and a balcony.

I bicycle back into town where I find an internet café, and have a bite to eat. Back at the hotel, I spend the afternoon on the deck, relaxing on the deck, and reading. Staring at the road across the field, I realize that I'm back at the offramp that I ignored when I first approached town. Oh well.

Snow on the hilltops as I head south toward Cay.
The flats east of Aksehir.
The view from the hotel is peaceful.
  Next: Ilgin to Kadinhani  
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