The 550kms sunday

A 3-day weekend is looming - the "Good Friday" weekend from March 25-27. The bike was scheduled for a tightening up but needed 500 more kms on the odometer. The 3DW would too good to miss, for a ride. That meant that it was absolutely essential to put in 400 kms asap. The initial schedule was for Saturday, but I hadn't been feeling 'good' for the last few days and I gave up on Saturday. On Sunday, I was determined and raring to go. Woke up at 4:45 and was out of the gates before 5:30. I put my bike on the side stand and had just walked up to close the gate, when the bike toppled over. Cursed my carelessness first, then thought - "God, no problem as long as the bike doesn't fall when I am riding". It looked to me like the handle bar was no longer straight, but I think it was a purely psychological fear.

Right or wrong, I was on the road. The idea was to ride along the Old Madras Road (NH 4), and probably turn back at Chittoor. A colleague had also put into my mind the option of Tirupathi. That looked like too much distance though. It was so great to be on the road and watch dawn break through. The sun lit up the earth in a golden hue. It was enchanting. The lovely road added to the effect. People rightly say that Nirvana is only a arms reach away.

I surprised myself with the times I made. Whenever I stopped and took a look at the time, it seemed a lot less than what I expected it to be. I had estimated that I would reach Chittoor around noon, but I found myself just outside the town by 9:30 or so. That's when I spotted the board marking the deviation to Tirupati. After a quick calculation, I decided to take the deviation. The first few kms (a tolled bye-pass road !!!) were pathetic. Then the road became better and finally when I took another turn onto the road that lead straight to Tirupati, it was mind boggling. There were sections of this road marked with a 100kmph speed limit. Amazing.

Tirupati was a long distance away and I planned to turn back whenever I thought it was time. But I found myself in Tirupati by 11:00, no I think it was earlier than that. Tirumala lured me, it was just 22kms off. The problem was that it was all uphill and there was too much traffic headed that way. So I decided to turn back. I took a forest-like route to get back onto the Tirupati-Chittoor "super-road". By 12:30 I was back on the NH4 and eating rotis and butter chicken at a dhaba. I was back on the road by 13:30. With a few butt stops and crawling thorugh Bangalore traffic for 45 minutes, I was at home at 16:30.

11 hours and 550kms on the road. I was tired, but an hour and a half long sleep brushed off the tiredness. Taking away a conservative 1 hour in total stoppage time and a very pessimistic 50kms in tripmeter error, I had averaged 50km/hr. Pretty good I should say.

P.S.: The bike was serviced at Venkat's yesterday and it is good to go for the 3WD.

Posted in Labels: |