An epic day - the beauty and the beast of cycle touring.
Everything was going great, we went from our bucolic canalside to country lanes and argines (levees) along the river Po, until 15k from our finish, we turned onto a very busy road, which was expected toward Piacenza. We started gritting our teeth, but then less than a kilometer from when we entered this "freeway" a "argine Po" sign appeared, which was not expected.
So without a map detailing this Argine, we chose this route over the freeway. To say the least it was a beautiful peaceful cycle albeit much much longer than the "freeway" and with a fair bit of wind at our face. The signage was typical Italian (many where you don't need them and none where you need them) but that was not the problem.
Let's see, it was getting late, Piacenza seemed to be getting further away, rain was threatening and, oh yeah, there was knife pain in Julia's knee with every pedal stroke. After a few regrouping sessions and an agreement to think positive, Piacenza suddenly appeared on the horizon. The outskirts, ugly, the old town spectacular. Now where to stay. It's dumping rain, find shelter, get rain gear, someone watch the bikes and the other look for accomodation. In the pitch dark, we walked the last .5 kilometer to a recommended hotel. The woman at reception could not have been happier to see us. And since she could only speak Italian, we could not express how glad we were to see her!
Time for a rest day!