Today's plan was to get on the road at first light so that we could get out of Destin before the traffic started up. Our hotel did not have a breakfast of any kind, so we were rolling at 5:38. I was in front about an hour later when I spotted an open restaurant called The Donut Hole and pulled into the parking lot.
It was great to have a full breakfast -- or, in my case, two breakfasts. I ordered an omelet but when I saw Fred & Ray's pancakes, I ordered those, too.
A couple of miles later we diverted off US98 onto the scenic beachfront route. This turned out real well. Unlike Destin, the beach communities we rode through for the next couple of hours were quiet, upscale towns and we took advantage of the bike path that stretched nearly the whole way. We saw lots of other cyclists but no others touring.
While exploring the waterfront near our hotel this afternoon, Fred met an old fellow who invited us to come by this evening to toast the anniversary of the Normandy Invasion, which he survived but many of his friends did not. We had a most pleasant afternoon with Joe and his family.
Today's 53 mile ride took 3 hrs 55 mins (13.5 avg) with a brisk headwind most of the way.