Sunday, 31 March 2019

Diary of a motorcycle

Hello everyone, I am new to this world and am still learning its maneuvers and honking and gliding between the traffic and many more such adventure tricks. My life started a month ago with this cool kinda guy. He never rode me anywhere else apart from home to office and back until the day I got some numbers on my bum. The next day, he rode me all through the city painting his face like a clown. It looked like everyone on the street was in same mood flying colours through the air, but he made sure I was safe from all those colourful hazards. "I like him!"

That day I heard him say to someone that we were going on a bike trip to Daman and may be Rann of Kutch if everything goes well. I don't know much about those places, but this should be fun, and I was excited - "Yay, my first road trip!" What more can a bike dream of! Servicing - check, shiny teflon coating on my body - check, petrol tank full - check - "Yup, I am ready to roll!" The next morning, Rocky came wearing bandana, helmet, goggles, jacket, gloves, boots and what not. “Man, I envy him. So many accessories for the trip and just a fancy key chain for me!

He started my engine and we started our trip but wait . . . “Hey, hey, hey! Mumbai is on the opposite direction! Where are we going? I think he might have to buy something for the journey.” We have been on the highway for last 2 hours and I don’t think he is going to turn towards Mumbai ever. “Am I stuck with an idiot or something?” Although I am enjoying the wind on my shield and my tires burning on the highway, it does not feel like a fun trip. I am in complete blind for what our destination is. We are just driving endlessly on the Pune-Bangalore highway. “Maybe we are going to Bangalore!” My realization of the destination was short lived when we took a sudden right turn from Karad. “You just can’t have any expectations from this guy!

Now we have left the highway and are going through narrow roads in remote villages. He was not slowing down even on those kachcha-pakka roads. I was having butterflies in my engine on those sudden twists and turns with chicken and dogs running loose aimlessly on the road. Suddenly, I came to a halt. “OMG, there is no road ahead!” He checked for an alternate route on the map but there was none. He felt sorry for me but started to go ahead. “Hey mister, I am not going on this disastrous, broken path full of rocks and stones . . . Ouch Ouch ouch OUCH!!!” Well, that continued for a long 2-3 kilometers. Let me tell you all something – he might have travelled on far worse paths while travelling to Hyderabad, but this was no fun for me either. I felt pity for that old pulsar of his. I can’t imagine what that poor old thing might have felt with two of the mankind riding over it for 70 long torturous kilometers. After riding for an hour or two through those villages, we finally hit the main road again. I think I know where we are heading as we are riding on the Kolhapur-Ratnagiri highway.

The sun is on our heads now but moving in the shade of tall trees on both sides of the road protected us for quite a long time. A little while later, ghat section started and I had some beautiful views of the villages from the top. “I am loving it. This trip is going great!” An hour later, we finally reached Ratnagiri and had a little rest in our hotel. In the evening, we went to the Gateway of Ratnagiri on the Mandavi beach. He spent an hour on the beach and another half exploring the main market which was on the way to our hotel. Finally, we called it a day and retired. “Hey! Where are you going, leaving me unlocked? I just can’t believe how careless this person is!

I could not sleep for the whole night, worried dead of what might happen if someone else comes to know that I am unlocked. He realized his mistake in the morning but fortunately, I had been safe. My only solace was the police jeep parked next to me who kept telling me to keep calm and not to worry due to its presence. We started off with no destination in mind. Rocky just wanted to see the harbor and we rode wherever the paths led us. We reached the harbor soon and turned towards a narrow trail with sea on one side and coconut trees on the other for as far as I could see. It was a lovely path to ride on until we reached some village and started to get nasty stares. We thought it was time to turn back. Next, we went to the Ratnadurg fort. The view of sea from the heights of the fort was cool when Rocky spotted a harbor he had to go at any cost. “This person is obsessed with things I understand very little.

This harbor of his might be a new one as it was not showing on the maps. Rocky was driving based on his intuition and with the proximity to the fort. We drove through some fishermen’s village and we both had to stop our breaths for a while. He was able to find the harbor within some time. “Yaay, here we come. O O not again, there is no road ahead. You can go alone if you want to. Please please please, I don’t want to go!” None of my pleads were heard this time too and we reached his deserted harbor. Though the view was beautiful, the solitude rather desertion of the place did not appeal to my taste. Then, we returned to our hotel and rested for a while. In the evening we went to Bhatye beach and he enjoyed the beach, the crowd and sea-side delicacies. It was time to retire as tomorrow was a big day.

The next morning, we rode to Ganpatipule. The weather was pleasant and the roads empty. The ghats had a lovely view and Rocky stopped at a couple of points from the top of ghats to take my photo with the sea in the background. “I have started to like this guy. He has been taking only my photos during the whole journey.” Rocky visited the Ganpatipule temple and did quad-biking on the sea-shore. It was quite a clean and calm beach. For our return journey, Rocky had already made a mental note of couple of points where we could ride till the shore. We rode till the sea side at Aare view point. At Aare Ware beach, he went for a walk along the shore. This was a very long empty beach with crystal clear water. Finally, he decided to return but, on the way, saw a hoarding of Harsha Scuba Diving and I was turned towards the diving site. “This guy is very impulsive for adventure.

He left me in the sun for doing scuba diving and I decided to make the most of it. I stretched my tires and had a great sun bath, lying on the shore, waiting for my idiot companion to return from having a fun dive. I later realized it was a good decision on his part that he didn’t take me for diving as god knows what might have happened if water went inside my lungs, sorry engine. I take my words back. He might not be that idiot after all. We returned to our hotel in the evening. “This trip is going great. I am loving it!

Next morning, we started off before dawn bidding goodbye to Ratnagiri. For an hour, the decision felt like a wrong one as the dense fog made visibility low and difficult to ride. With the sun, we came back to the highway on our way to Bangalore. The long endless stretch of highway, the wind on my face, light sun, vast fields on both sides of the road – all of these felt like a dream run. It felt awesome till noon when the sun started to compete and my whole viewpoint changed. It started to look like long endless stretch of road, large barren lands on both sides, sun glaring at its peak and no dhabas or petrol pumps on the highway making it boring and tiresome.

On the way, we were stopped by few people in white dress in some fancy vehicle with a red siren for speeding. Rocky initially tried to convince them otherwise but gave up after a little while. They were asking for some fine from him, but Rocky told he did not want any red mark on my character yet as I was a new bike. “I think I am falling in love with this guy!” One uncle with a big belly sitting inside the red siren vehicle laughed and let us go. By the evening, I covered 750 long kilometers to Bangalore and I was exhausted. We somehow reached Rocky’s brother’s place after lots of mis-directions by Google aunty. “Ab aur koi adventure nahi chahiye babaji. Boring bana do ji iss trip ko!” I was famished to my core to even think of anything. All of us decided to rest and make further plans after that. I had just one thought before I went into the land of dreams –

Together we ride, together we rise
      Together we conquer the whole highway . . .

P.S. I am not sharing my pics from the trip here coz I don’t want any human interference in my private life. I have shared them on RoadBook (like your FaceBook) with my bike friends. I think I am taking after Rocky, ie, I am not getting the right feeling and mood to write the rest of the trip. May be someday! “Tab tak ke liye main aapse vida chahunga deviyon aur sajjano. Aap log padhte rahiye ye adbhut blog jiska naam hai aadab, shabba khair, shubh ratri . . .