It was pretty hard to imagine that he has just finished an interstate bikeride. Cause few months ago, he didnt even know how to drive one. Lapping just 4000 kms on bangalore roads gave him enough confidence to burn the rubber on NH7. Confidence ? His peers termed it stupidity, madness and a dozen other synonyms.
Completing the tedious journey, gave him even more confidence on his machine. Though his machine, failed him twice on the return journey. NH7 didn’t seem to like her and punctured her twice. After driving 6000 odd kilometers, zooming past vehicles in the traffic, challenging the dreadful bangalore traffic, definitely instilled enough confidence in him to coin himself as the King of the road. If not the king, maybe one of the many princes. With skill came arrogance, and nature took its course. He became arrogant, inpatient and bossy on the road. Cursing the snail paced drivers and pedestrians on his way. He wanted the whole road for himself, taking his machine to the limits excited him. Little did he know that this arrogance had turned into stupidity and madness.
His group of friends wanted to watch the latest Hrithik flick. Tickets were booked, the sunday evening was very inviting to go out. His friends decided to take an auto and there was no question about his companion for the small journey. Midway they realized that they may be late for food also one of his friends had forgotten her specs back home. It was a challenge to go back get the glasses and come back in time. He was always up for challenges, especially when he was with his machine. He was back home in a flash. Time was running out and the traffic had thickened.
He had to zoom past a lot of vehicles, irritating them on his course. It was scary but he trusted his batmobile. He saw that few 100 meters in front of him was free of traffic, he pressed the accelerator to the maximum. Then out of nowhere, a big van wanted to take a U-turn from the opposite side of the road, he wanted to stop looking at him. One thought on both of their minds, “to let the other pass or to go ahead”. Both of them were greedy. Both of them pressed the accelerator. It was too late for him to realize that his machine couldn’t go fast enough to get past the van without crashing into it.
It was natural of him to press the brakes. But sadly, his batmobile couldn’t stop in that short distance. He watched as his batmobile skid and hit the van almost horizontally. And during this short time he kept questioning himself “What went wrong?”. The last thing he remembered was his helmet protected head hitting the van. He woke up in the hospital with an unbearable pain in his head. The male nurses told him that he had a seizure right after the accident, and advised him to cool down and take rest. He had no memory of the seizure or the trip to the hospital. The atmosphere in the hospital was not helping his present state, nor were the three letters “ICU” written on the door. The arrogant prince of the road had turned into a scared fool.
Two weeks later, it broke his heart to see his batmobile shattered. He drove her to a service center to get her fixed. And a month later, and after a lot of “I told you so”‘s he could drive his batmobile again. There were no scars on the bike, but there was a permanent one etched in his memory. For the first time he let other vehicles pass, and saw other arrogant princes of the road zoom past him. He wanted to join them, but he didn’t want to hurt himself or his batmobile. Maybe he had learnt his lesson, he knew his accident could have been fatal, he knew there are others who loved him a lot and he couldn’t put all that on stake.
He is still fond of his machine, still exercises it to its maximum but only wiser to do it on empty roads and with safety.
PS: I completed 16000 kms about a week back