81 km, 5h 30 min
We did not sleep too badly last night, but were still somewhat restless. At 3 am, Becky woke up to sounds that sounded like someone walking around. She woke Scott up and we both listened intently for about 5 minutes to discover that it was just the tarp flapping. The wind had changed directly and was now coming directly into our shelter. It was warm enough out that this did not cause a problem, so we move a bag to hold the tarp down and prevent it from flapping. Scott had several dreams where a transit station or a warehouse was present in our abandoned building, with many people showing up before we packed up and left.
We were up early – Becky was awake by 5 am – something to do with going to sleep at 8 pm. Becky made Scott get up by 5:45 am, so by 6:30 am, we were packed up and on the bikes. Unfortunately, fog had rolled in a few hours earlier, so everything was damp. Our normal practice while camping if this happens is to lay out sleeping bags and clothing and wait for the sun to dry them. Not an option today, since we needed to leave at sunrise before anyone arrived.
The S.S.7 to Brindisi had good shoulders, and trucks generally changed lanes to pass us, so our ride was pretty comfortable and fast. We tried to take the service roads a few times, but they tended to be much less direct when we were on them. When we were actually on the highway, the service road appeared to parallel us beautifully though!
While we knew where the youth hostel was (roughly), thanks to Google Maps, our South Italy map wasn’t detailed enough to help us get there. We hopped off the S.S.7 at the last exit, went north, and then headed down the SS 16, which we thought was the right direction. We ended up in front of a school at 1 pm when the chaos of lunch happened. We are starting to despise the moment when hoards of teenagers enter the streets at one time, causing all the traffic to become unpredictable. Add teenagers yelling comments at you about your bikes to the unpredictable traffic, and it becomes very difficult to maneuver.
We stopped just past the school to get our bearings. Becky noticed a youth hostel sign at the intersection we had just crossed, so she went to check it out while Scott was looking for the address in the Lonely Planet guide. Just then, Maurizio (owner of the hostel) pulled up beside Scott on his electric bike. We had indeed found the hostel.
We were both quite tired after a restless night and early morning, so we didn’t do much other than unpack, eat and sleep. Scott was in bed by 8 pm!