Actually, from Gouda to Delft was two days, not one. We rode from Gouda through the Kinderdijk---the most famous windmill tour of the world. It was crazy how many windmills there were (19 in just that area). And fun to try to count them all. We cycled over smaller canals, raced to beat the looming dark clouds and even rode a few small ferries---the kind that leave every 5 minutes to go back and forth across a wider canal.
The first night we landed in Oudekerk a/d Ijssel, in the home of a lovely couple who themselves took up cycling after the age of 50. They had books and tales, and had clocked mileage that made us look like we were kicking up our legs on a teeter-totter and not much more.
The second morning we enjoyed a lovely in-home breakfast [we are growing accustomed to Dutch breakfasts: [a selection of] bread with options of jam, butter, peanut butter, chocolate spread and sprinkles, ham and/or cheese, coffee/orange juice/tea and a soft-boiled egg. Sometimes fruit and yogurt make an appearance. No complaints by the way; we are loving the consistency and flavors, all the homemade jam, the fabulous Gouda cheese, the non-sugary yogurt...]. Then we shoved off and rode to Delft. Day 1 was 35 miles, day 2 just 30 when we finally arrived in Delft.
En route to Delft we had a lovely picnic lunch--something that is becoming a habit for our riding days (quick pit-stop at the grocer to load up on drinks and sandwich makings). James had planned our drop on a bench in front of windmills (ah the benefits of research and travel tips). It was story-book material. We ran across packs of ducks and swans, and when stopping for a photo op, they swarmed Caleb and I.
Our ride toward Delft included one of my favorite stretches so far, an extensive green space of grasses and trees, white picket bridges over canals and [what felt like] our own personal bike path. We enjoyed a little speed and silence in the most tranquil of settings. And always if you peeked into the canals, you would see swans and ducks with their ducklings. Perhaps it isn't such a stretch when James peers into his mirror and I reassure him: yes all your ducks are here. (When it is windy especially, we ride in a tight little duck-like format.)