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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Motorcycle Diaries

Riding a scooter symbolizes the beginning of a new phase in our lives.The purr of the engine is like a fanfare of trumpets heralding a queen. To me, it means freedom and power, responsibility and seriousness.Whatever be the emotions attached to the bike, it is undeniable that your first riding lesson is one of those special 'First's, right up there with first friend and first crush. So let me tell you a little about my first lesson.

It was clear, bright, slightly chilly morning. At a 7 am, my dad and I took the scooter to a secluded network of small roads.Malleswaram, being a sleepy neighborhood was almost devoid of human life. May dad and I got off and he taught me about the mechanisms of the bike. As I started up the engine, I could feel its power like an untamed rocket that I could barely control. As I rode it around, and slowly got the hang of it, making a left turn here and a u-turn there, I could feel my father's tension rising, his nervousness was obvious from the way he kept yelling instructions at me and the shaky tone of his voice. But I guess I was good, for at the end of an uneventful hour,he surprisingly decided I could drive us home. Of course the moment he started to trust me, I just had to do something wrong. What happened is that he wanted me to stop at the newsstand, but I stopped six feet away, right behind a parked auto. So, I restarted the bike and tried to turn away from the auto, but I had cut it way too close and we ended up bruising our legs. As if that wasn't enough, the tree that was supposed to be on the other side of the road, was suddenly much too close for comfort. "Brake! Brake!" yelled my father, hysterically, but as luck would have it, I pulled the throttle before the brake, giving a 'smashing' end to our ordeal.

Later that day, showing off my 'Spoils of war ' to my friends, all I could think about was how I had been terribly lucky, and how I'd never forget that moment with my dad.