After doing few short road trips around Pune, it was time to do one long road trip. Night riding on my Avenger was what I always wanted to do. Coincidentally one family event was coming up at my wife’s native place Balaghat, Madhya Pradesh which is close to 900km from Pune. I thought this was a golden opportunity. So, I decided, let’s plan for this road trip. There was no way my parents would have given me permission for this. I secretly started planning for this trip. I booked train tickets for my parents in such a way that they would leave at least 2 hrs before me. I had to lie about my availability for the family event due to workload at my office. Everything happened as per plan. As soon as my parents left, I packed my bag, took all the necessary things like tyre tubes, headlight fuse, torch, swiss knife, etc, which I had already purchased, strapped my luggage to the motorcycle and yes I was ready for my first solo motorcycle ride of 900km, ready to put some real miles on the bike.
Started at 6 pm with the tour plan to follow the route as:
Within no time I crossed Shikrapur then crossed Ranjangaon then crossed Ahmednagar and then Aurangabad, I was cruising with all the adrenaline rushing through me. It was like I own this Highway. Night is beautiful, unless you are not scared of darkness.
I found that there was a sense of respect for each other on the highways. Every time the vehicle, be it a truck or a car or a motorcycle, coming from opposite direction, it would turn its light from high beam to dipper.
It was 12 o’clock midnight and I was hungry. I am very fond of Dhabas by the highway. Took halt at a small dhaba which had a proper setting of “Khatiya” where I sat and ordered dal tadka and tandoori roti, what a delight. Took a good 1 hr break, had my Sutta listening to “typical” dhaba songs. I would give up anything for this moment. Wished my wife shared this moment with me. I missed her. But I am sure after hearing to my experiences, she would definitely not want to miss the next tour with me. It was time to hit the road again. Checked my luggage and here I go. I arrived to Sindhked Raja. Sindhked Raja has a specific significance in Maratha history. It is birthplace of Jijabai “Mata” mother of greatest warrior Shivaji Maharaj.
Road condition here is very bad. It seemed as if I were on Mars. I hardly covered 5 km in 15 minutes. And since it was dark, it was pretty scary to stop and take one photo. The road condition should be better for a place of such significance.
It was around 4 am when I arrived at Mehkar and till now there was hardly anyone on the road. Sometimes it gave me a creepy feeling that someone is watching me. I guess it may happen to anyone as we are exposed to so many paranormal stories. As the time progressed, the life in the rural areas of Maharashtra started picking up. People trying to finish off morning business at the roadside as long as it was still dark. Hope I didn’t disturbed them. Some of them getting ready for milk, newspaper deliveries. As the sun rose I started seeing more people. After the whole night drive I was tired and I felt like talking to someone. I stopped my motorcycle at the roadside. A farmer came and he was concerned whether everything was ok or not as he thought my motorcycle got broke down. It was very kind of him. We both started talking about family, work and all stuff. He was so kind that he asked me to stay for lunch. I politely declined to his offer as I had to reach Balaghat till afternoon. I took a selfie together, a memory which I would cherish lifetime.
I said “bhetu parat” in Marathi which means “bye” in English and I left. His name is Alok Halke. I was thinking about him and realised that he seemed so content with his life. Talking to him was like a morning boost. All my tiredness was gone and I was refreshed. I learned new perspective of life, “Being content with what you have”. Its amazing that travelling teaches you so much. You become wiser after each trip you do.
Further I crossed Amravati and then Wardha and touched AH46 Nagpur highway, a four lane express way amazing road. Touched speed of 110 kmph and never slowed down this speed till Bhandara.
Around 3 pm I crossed Madhya Pradesh border and reached Balaghat at 4 pm.
Everybody here was shocked and surprised. No one would believe that I drove from Pune to Balaghat. My parents scolded me especially my mom who was really worried. If I were unmarried my mother would have beaten me for being careless. On one hand mom scolded me and on the other hand she also wanted to tell people about my “glory”. Since it was a function many guest who attended the function came to know about my road trip. Some thought I was a fool while some of them thought it was a daring thing to ride in the night. Some of the guests were old-timers who shared their biking experiences.
My first road trip, took me 22 hrs of riding, started at 6pm and ended at 4pm, achieved a personal milestone.
A ride, a journey which made me realize how much I love being on the road, travelling, talking to people, knowing about their perspective and an experience that would certainly be helpful for my future tours.
– by Gaurav Joshi
‘We would like to wish him, all the very best for the future rides.’
(Special thanks to our reader Gaurav Joshi for the article, you guys also keep sending us more such articles.)
To read more on Offbeat News, Click here