One of my "big" rides this year was a metric on a hub geared Dahon. It was a hot day, and I stopped lots. Lots and lots, at least by comparison to my usual bike (recumbent).
I also enjoyed the ride lots. Lots and lots. I rode to a county fair, walked around for a while, rode over to a car show 10-15 miles away, walked around for a while... you get the idea. With the folder I most certainly wasn't in a hurry, and the whole trip was much more a journey than many of my longer rides on the 'bent (can't stop. must rush. Uh-oh, average speed slipping, must. work. harder).
And this gives me furiously to think. Why not plan to do a full 100 on a vintage 3 speed? I'm sure some nutter has done Paris-Brest-Paris on one, and I've looked over 3speedtour.com
I'm still fit enough that I'm pretty sure an unsagged solo 5.5hr century would be realizable, but... it seems so pointless. Almost unsporting. More and more, I find myself intrigued by the possibility of taking an old bike, and riding it from dawn until dinner time on a mix of pavement and gravel roads, walking up steeper hills if need be. Like cycling might have been in 50 - 100 years ago. And while I say 100 miles, I'm not sure it matters, so long as the distance is long enough to be a challenge and the ride takes most of the day.
Anyone else similarly compelled, or am I a cotter short of a full crankset?