Not always the miles, friends you made en route can too grade the ride.
Ride to Mahabaleshwar came at the time, when many of the Inddiethumpers have started itching to ride. Shyamal and Karna didn’t even hide their itch and shouted it publicly on FB. To cool the sensations most of the riders were having, Moderators of the club unleashed the Ride Calendar for the years few weeks back, with the first ride to Mahabaleshwar on 22nd-23rd of April. Ride to Rider Mania, Kolkata; Ratnawadi and Gaddha Mania, Lonar were the other rides did by the Club this year. A gang of off-ride lovers also had a small one-day off-ride to Shahpur, Jangal me Dangal; and those who had attended that, were still searching for water to quench their burnt throat!
Well, this ride to Mahabaleshwar was not only special for being the customarily first of the year, but also cause the ride was actually planned for the founder-member of the Club, Mr Daman Sidhu. Over 40 riders with some 10 pillions registered for the ride, and over 30 could make it on the day. Many of the riders haven’t met Mr Sidhu, and this ride was a sort of opportunity to meet the mind who first thought of the club. Unfortunately he couldn’t make it to the ride, thanks to Consulate; but, show went on! (Read the Story of Inddiethumpers by Daman Sidhu here)
|A view of the valley from Wilson Point|
Mahabaleshwar is one the famous hill stations near Mumbai. At an average elevation of some 1300 meters, this place is about 285 km south of Mumbai in district of Satara. This was my second trip to the town, but the first ride. While the first trip was more of excursion, this one was more of liberation. In fact what else you want as freedom riding your bullet with the guys with whom you share a brotherhood of an especial kind!
As planned, riders from across the Mumbai – Navi Mumbai started gathering at Om Sai Snacks, Panvel. I reached the rendezvous with Pawan, Vikram and two new riders Arun and Ranveer. Though I too am a new rider with the Club, my Rider Mania feat with Guri pa ji and Ranjit has earned me the honored membership. It was Arun’s first overnight ride with the Club and at that moment no one had any idea that the day is going to be marked in our memories within a few hours.
|Here starts the thumpp....|
|Riding the meandering road|
After getting our bags and boots dumped at Tree Top Bungalows, Vineet and I took Caveman to nearest Municipality Hospital. Though the Doctor wasn’t available, nurses were good and cordial enough for the purpose. A meager charge of Rs 5/- only for dressing left us wondering over what we pay for so-called hospitality-Hospitals back in the city. Treating ourselves with healthy carrot juice, price of which brought us back to the tourist-city, buying bottles of unhealthy rotten malt-sugar syrup for friends and strawberries for family we came back to the Resort, getting ready for the party-all-the-night session!
|Vikram and Shyamal...party time...|
|Dance dance...Caveman at center|
|Don't tell my mom, you saw me dancing ;) ~ Karna aka Bulldog|
|Caveman and Pa ji|
|No one helped me standing up :-/|
Next morning, half woke up, more than half slept, Arun reminded us about our planned visit to Sunrise spot. Arun, me and Headlight led by Mohanty visited Wilson point some 2hours later to mighty Sun’s rise. It was already a bright day there, though the breeze was cool enough to get us some welcome shivering! We spent some time there posing with our bulls for the cameras and returned back to the resort.
|3 the bhai at Wilson Point|
|Learning Jungle tips from Caveman|
Ride back to Mumbai started at the scheduled 11:00 AM, via Panchagani-NH 4. We started in smaller groups and regrouped in different groups en route. I started the ride with Pradipta riding Caveman’s bull with caveman as pillion, his friend, Justify, Chandan and met all other guys at Table top, Panchagani. Some group snaps, and another treat of homemade ice-cream was our last feat together. From there, I started with Vikram, Ranveer and Pawan. Thumpers took the lunch break at Big Wheels Motoring Café; but we preferred to ride ahead and stopped for lunch at Khandala. There we’re joined by Akhtar and Ridhi and later by Shyamal, Justify etc. And, then again from Panvel again we were three, me, Pawan and Ranveer to ride ahead in to the navi Mumbai, our home!
As a ride, 200 and a few kilometers mayn’t be much, but the score of friends we got is some achievement! Mayn’t I be able to be in touch with each and everybody all the time, but a few with whom I met again on this ride and would be riding again with, would for sure get into my very personal diary of friends, like Pa ji, Cheryl mam, Headlight, Justify, Hellboy, Ranjeet, Rohan, Dheeraj, Mohanty, Shyamal, Arun, Akhtar bhai, Appu, Bulldog, Hard Dick, Vikram….do I need to tell what I accomplished! :)
|Inddiethumpers at Table Top, Panchagani|
|Room No. 15 ke Inddiethumpers|
|Dear, lemme thump...I'll be back....|
(Thanks to Vineet, Mahi, Rahul and Mohanty for pics and all the Inddiethumpers for a great ride)
For more pix click here..
|IMC: Mahabaleshwar Ride - April 23-24 2011|