Pune to Goa : Amboli Ghat to Goa !

{The is the 3rd and the last part in continuation to “The time on the Highway”}

As planned, I halted for lunch at a hotel opposite to the “Goa Ways”. Soon I re-started my journey on the not so wide 2 way road towards Amboli. The road was not as great as the AH-47, but what made it worth riding was the greenery around. The road was covered with trees on both the sides and was full of blind turns….those “accidental zone” ones.

It was midafternoon and the weather was cloudy but not dark. I had to change back to clear visor on the helmet so that I could enjoy the greenery around. The traffic on the road was moderate and at times, it was only me and my bike gliding on the road. Alone on that road with minimum humans, I felt a mixture of fear, adrenaline, and calmness. Being there, surrounded by nature made me feel small and humbled.

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My ears were stuffed with cotton, face covered with mask and all of these secured by 1300 gms helmet. Even then I could clearly hear the engine between my legs roaring. Such an experience is very rare in the city. The quick passing trees made me feel that I was doing high speeds but a quick glance on the speedo and the needle would be around 60-70. On the way, I saw quite a number of vehicles in damaged state, fallen in ditches or turtled. Every time I would see vehicles stopped and people running around, I would pray in my mind…”God…No casualties please”.

 

I am not an expert rider; I’d rather be naïve all my life and respect everything that is there on the road. I try to observe, sense and doubt everything that is there on the road. Be it cars driving ahead or behind me, the road signs, the bums that I am about to feel, etc. I am short of words to describe how my mind works when I am riding. It takes out my focus from everyday problems and gets me into a state that is similar to meditation!

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In Amboli ghat, I was working through the gears, entering the corners with excitement, leaning in and then exiting it with big wide smile. I don’t remember how long I was doing this but I thoroughly enjoyed it. A glance at the watch and it was 4.30 pm; I wanted to reach Goa, at the guest house in Miramar before it was dark. Riding throughout the day is fun but when the sun starts going down, you tiredness starts creeping in and puts you into the “hurry” mode. Long rides require thorough and “realistic” planning. It also requires understanding of your own capabilities and limits. I know I can ride with enthusiasm only till 6 pm if I start at 6 am. That would roughly be 500 kms depending upon the road conditions. Riding when you are tired and least excited is Dangerous!

 

After the long ride through the 2 way road, I finally entered Mumbai-Goa highway. By this time, I was tired but there was still 50 odd kms to go. What uplifted my spirit were the red soil and the coconut trees. Riding towards Goa unlike other cities felt good. Ride for 400+ kms, then enter in any city and you will be welcomed with evening traffic that can double your tiredness. But Goa was different. I reached the Kadamba station and inquired for directions to Miramar beach. The road to Miramar from Kadamba station runs parallel to the sea on one side and colorful buildings on the other. It was difficult not to get distracted by the extensively lighted casino ships and ferries.

As Miramar was approaching, the traffic chaos was on rise. I reached Miramar and parked my bike. I kept my feet down and my shoe kissed the Goa sand 🙂

Tired and hungry, I was waiting for Swati and her dad to arrive and guide me with the route to guest house.

Oh, I forgot to mention. Swati and her parents took the 9 am Pune to Goa flight the same morning!

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