It was the end of 1st year of the Master Degree and everyone was going back home. Even I wanted to go home as desperately as others but not alone nor I wanted to send my love, my bullet alone in the darkness of a train box. Neither my parents nor anyone else in my family knew about my plan to travel from Dehradun, Uttrakhand to Jodhpur, Rajasthan by bullet. It was on the Monday night of the third week of May when I finalized this and bought necessary items for the trip. On Tuesday evening after finishing the formalities from the university, at around 5 PM I decided to depart from my hostel.
I planned the route and decided to cover the whole trip within three days as I didn’t want to travel during night time. I was alone in the entire trip and had never traveled so long distance till then. I was excited, confident amidst little fear as I didn’t tell about the trip to anyone in my family. At around 5 PM I started the bullet from my hostel, Avalon Royale, which is very close from the University, UPES, where I used to study. I decided to reach to Delhi before midnight and to spend overnight there. Planned to start the journey early morning from Delhi, and to reach Jaipur before the sun set and so on for the next day from Jaipur to Jodhpur, the final destination. There is a famous saying by a famous linguist that you do not do everything you always plan. It turned out to be the same for my journey.
From Dehradun, I travelled upto Delhi via Saharanpur, Muzaffarnagar, Meerut and Ghaziabad. It was summers in India but since I was travelling during night the ride was very comfortable. I was riding slowly at an average pace of 60-80 Kmph during night. Till Delhi, I could see many “dhabas” alongside the road and there was enough traffic to make me feel comfortable riding the bike. I never felt as if I am the only one riding on the road. I stopped at couple of places to give rest and fuel to my bullet and to myself.
It was around 12’oclock when I reached Delhi. After reaching to Delhi I wasn’t feeling sleepy nor I was tired so I thought of continuing the ride. While crossing the Delhi for Gurgaon in the midnight, I encountered a diversion on the road as some construction was going on. I stopped and asked a taxi driver standing nearby for the right path as I got little confused. Since Delhi is indeed the crime capital I got a little hint by the tone he replied to me. Here goes the short conversation between us.
Me: Is this the way to go to Gurgaon?
Driver: No, this is just the opposite and completely wrong way (he answered instantly and very confidently)
Me: So which is the right one? (I asked because if he is so confident about the wrong one, he must be having atleast little idea about the right path. I realized something wrong in his mind)
Driver: … (said nothing and called couple of his friends who were standing nearby with a very vicious tone)
Two of his friends came and all three of them stood all around the bullet. At that very instant I raced my bike to the top and ran away. The path I was asking for eventually turned out to be right. I could see by their face that their intention was not to help me. For me the Delhi has always been the place of tall and beautiful building with the rotten and cheap mind inside. Of course not everyone but a rotten apple spoils the barrel.
The trip went very pleasant after that and I reached Gurgaon at around 3 AM. And so I found the best place I could ever think of, The McDonald’s.
I was all refreshed after having good meal and again I resumed the journey. For the first time at around 5 AM I felt sleepy and so I was looking for a hotel to get rest but I found none. I did not want to take any risk on the highway so I stopped the bullet on the next dhaba. It was early morning, a person was sprinkling water outside the dhaba and I could listen the sweet chirping of the birds. I relaxed myself on the chair and had tea. I asked the waiter if there is a hotel nearby. It was unfortunate that there was no hotel in the vicinity. I was feeling very sleepy so I tried to sleep on the chair itself but couldn’t succeed. There were too many mosquitoes and I could barely take rest for 15 minutes perhaps. With no option in rescue, I started the bullet back. After few minutes of ride my sleep went away and I was feeling refreshed as the sun started rising. I planned to take rest in Jaipur.
I was so happy for the Rajasthan, for the morning and the sound of the birds that I did not realize that I am going to face the hardest time ever of my life. I traveled a little farther and finally saw the way to either enter into the Jaipur city or to pick the bypass.
Om my god!!! I don’t know what was running in my mind and yes I picked the bypass and decided to travel directly to Jodhpur without a stop. I now realize that this was the worst decision ever. Sooner I realized that the sun is rising higher and higher, and the dhabas turned into barren land. The sound of the birds too went away sooner and I was all alone on the road with almost no traffic on the road. I packed my helmet tightly so that no hot burning air can go in, pulled down my sleeves and wore the gloves. Thanks to me that I really did some preparation before the departure. And a real thanks to my helmet that without this particular helmet I think that I would have to stop somewhere in the midway.
Mcdonald’s was again to my rescue on the highway. I had my lunch for around 1 hour, packed couple of bottles of water and pulpy orange.The moment I came out and opened the exit gate of the restaurant, I then realized the difference of the temperature in which I was going to finish my journey. One may find it exaggerating but I was crossing the Rajasthan on 19th May 2016 and the next day I realized that I was actually travelling at a record breaking temperature of 51 degree Celsius.
Here are the links from International news channels for confirmation: – 5 cities to have their hottest temperature records broken – India records its hottest day ever as temperature hits 51C (that’s 123.8F) – India records its hottest day ever
So the question is how did I reach to Jodhpur safely. I realized that my body would need water after every fifteen minutes. And so after every thirty minutes I used to stop the bullet and buy 2 bottles of water. I drank a little and poured on my body a little as it was extremely important.
I continued the journey, and the next place I stopped, I was rather welcomed. The shop owner talked to me for a while and refused to take money for the water bottles I purchased. Well I realised that I am in Rajasthan now.
The journey remained more or less same until it got further worse. I had the most difficult time when I was just 100 Kms away from my city. I could calculate every passing Km and that time went really really slow.
My shirt turned black from white by pollution. I reached Jodhpur at around 7 PM and the worst part is I had to act at home as if I have traveled the entire trip by train and act as if I am completely fine.
The journey although was amazing but would not be recommended to anyone the way I did.
P.S. I have recently traveled to France and now I had told my parents about this and hence I am publishing it. Also on 13th October 2015 I purchased the bullet so this is the first anniversary.
“Four wheels move your body, two wheels move your soul” – Unknown