Wednesday, October 21, 2009
The Wind, the Road and the Rider..
Jaane kya dhoodhta hai yeh mera dil..
Tujhko kya chahiye zindagi?
and so went on Lucky Ali's voice with the Flute playing in a mellow tone, on my iPod.
My heart felt soft and my mind was in confusion..one of those days when i feel exceptionally conscious of my position in the world, where will I be Ten years from now? What will I be doing? Will I be married like all my seniors? Have a family and be stuck in the routine rut? Not to forget, the forthcoming semester examinations!
It was surprisingly an early Sunday morning, the Saturday night being full of the usual socializing and meeting up with friends et al..5am in the morning, I wake up with these thoughts in my mind. Thinking about how my seniors have made their life and felt like a horse ready for a race but having no race to run. Kept turning in bed thinking and keeping my eyes closed, hoping that sleep would catch up with me before the thought of getting up crossed my mind. Finally I thought some light music would do the trick, picked up the iPod, put the ear plugs in and Mr Lucky Ali started with his song, as if on cue.
Eyes closed, was trying to sleep...but the beauty of the music was getting to me. I could sense the song coming to an end and I knew the next song was some metallica number....mince meat of my sleep that is! Hit repeat just before the song could end. Eyes open now...looking at the iPod lying on the bed, as if waiting for the back-light to die....it did. Just like millions of things in everyday life that one can predict and know will happen when you want them to. Wish my life was this predictable, at least for me.
Noticing it was still dark outside, I gave up the idea of sleep and got up. Took the iPod with me and made my way to the balcony in my house....a cozy 12 by 12 jutting out of the side of the flat, covered with a blue gazebo..reminded me of the day i first put it up, just in time for the Pune monsoon...i smiled, not voluntarily i guess. Leaning against the railing, looking at the empty road from my 2nd floor vantage point, felt the cool morning breeze blowing across. Coffee! I thought.
A hot cuppa' in the hand and back at my look-out in the balcony...was thinking about all i could do, a jog perhaps......nah..
Lets go for a ride, yeah...lets ride, I thought to myself. Not thinkin' of a destination to head towards, I just got ready, put on my riding gear. Picked up the helmet and for a change, I left my iPod. I guess i just wanted to hear the Thump of my Enfield today :-)
Took the stairs down, walked to the side of my baby...could just see the outline of chrome shining across the tank and the fender. Turned the key and the green light of the neutral N came on, a signal from Trinca(that's what I call her), as if saying - I'm ready, I thought. Came out into the drive way and decided I wont use the Button start as its her first start of the day. A beautiful 1/4th end kick and she eased into her captivating beat...Thump.thump.thump.thump...thanks to Kunal I told myself and also my constant pestering that he underwent whenever she was at his workshop :-) hehe.
The watchman noticed the "Wind Screen wala Bike" and opened the gate, still dark i switched on the headlamp and put her in drive. Moved towards the gate, greeted with a sloppy early morning salute by the watchman, turned onto the main road and leveled out on the road at 40 in the third gear....directed her out of the city towards the highway...the trusty NH4. In fifth now and thumping along at 60 Kmph, the cool wind blowing into my face and the early-morning sky gearing up for its day of sunshine.
Hit the highway and felt the smooth vibe of a well laid tar road...Trinca's wheels rolling along smoothly and the light beam from her headlamp lighting up over the road in front of me...still thinking of how things may turn out for me in life...back in fifth gear and up to 80...the still vibration and the solitude of her thump got to me or should I say, got the better of me :-)
The thoughts vanished and I just reveled in the peace of moving along with my trusty companion talking to me in our own language we developed in the past three years....beautiful it is, trust me. The miles just kept adding up and the morning light came up slowly at its own lazy Sunday pace...could see orange lined clouds all along the horizon...hhmmmmm....how lovely the morning smelled..riding along we kept going on and on...we reached the first Ghat section and the true biker spirit took over - downshifted and took on the ghat at speed. Banking more with every turn...foot-pegs leaving trails of sparks in the bikes' wake..it feels awesome coming out of a well taken turn...achievement..self praise..pride and concern, all rolled into one amazing feeling of vrooming out of reach of the cornering monsters :-)
Reaching the top of the ghat I stopped, flicked the side stand and got off my motorcycle. Took a moment and then took off my helmet and jacket. oh! the feeling of the wind all over...
looked on into the valley below, the sun rising up slowly in the east....wow.. How beautiful nature is, if only one took the time to notice and appreciate its greatness. Such wonderful things are reduced to nothing due to the everyday ruckus we all are so eager to get past. I realized, in my impatient dash to achieve something, something about which I had no clue, in my existence, I had completely forgotten about the gift of life presented to me.
I realized I never truly tried to even comprehend what living is all about, its not about achievement or acquisition or even being famous or having a huge house and a zillion cars. Its actually about living in the small moments in between all these "achievements" probably. Life is about appreciating the small things and cherishing the sweet moments that living in this world brings to our existence. Breathing there on the ghat top, in the cool wind....none of that bullshit I got up with remained in my head. I was so thankful :-)
Turned to my side to look at Trinca...I thanked my stars that she was with me and i know she will always remain there, just like how she had always stayed by my side till now. Muuuaahh, I love you girl!
Time to head back, said a voice inside me. The distinct 'tink tink' sound of the aluminum engine cooling down had almost stopped. And so I saddled up again and turned around, heading home. I knew I was not just going back home, apart from the day which god called his 'rest' day after he finished making the world, I was heading back to the rut people call life, thumping slowly back under the beauty of the blue sky, in the warmth of the cool wind and on the straightness of curvy roads.
Back to the grind, as some of my friends say, Back to the Grind.