Posted: August 12, 2010 in Story
Tags: , ,

Hi.. I am Raj. This day June 7th is a special day for me. It has been special for 35 years now.

<35 years..34..33……………4..3..2..1.. rewind>

I was studying in my class 6 then and the best thing about going to class 6 was that my school allowed students to come to school by cycle from the 6th standard onwards. It was their way of telling that you are grown up! If my memory holds well, I first saw this marvellous peddling bike when I was in my class 5. It was the ‘Street Cat’ Cycle Event. One look was enough to start my pestering at home. I went back home that day and send down the first of my many ‘Operation Buy Cycle’ mission requests. It was turned down blatantly. My 5th standard mind told me – ‘If Muhammad Ghazni can do it, why not me. Nothing big!’ Learning history was handy then!

From 5th to 6th I progressed. If Ghazni tried 16 times to break the shackles to plunder Somanth, it took me about 470 requests, 546 pleas, 389 I love you Moms and I don’t remember how many tears to reach the ultimate prize. (Move on Muhammad Ghazni.. I am here.. Raj). The D-day came and my dad along with my grandfather took me to the city’s biggest Cycle Shop – My destiny I thought. I chose the cycle which I liked the most. But immediately came the heart breaking moment. I never knew how to ride a bicycle. Gloom spread across my face. My grandfather, realizing that my joy was short-lived tried to perk me up and as if he heard my inner voice, he told ‘Raj.. dear.. I will teach you how to ride the cycle. It is easy and stop worrying now. Be happy – You got what you yearned for. It is time to cheer up dear’. Those words were comforting.. more comforting when I  recollect it today.

My whole family got together to work out a proper plan for my cycle practice – a plan to make sure that my studies aren’t affected and convince my mother of the same. The Plan – I will start from school as soon as the last bell goes (I had to sacrifice the cricket matches we usually play after school) and come home by at least 3:30, have some snacks, then complete my homework (read as mother’s order) and finally at 5:00 pm will leave for cycle practice.

Next day – As planned things fell in place and the clock struck 5:00 pm and though my homework was the only one which was accomplished partially as per the plan. My mother, looking at my enthusiasm allowed me for my first day’s practice. I took out my brand new cycle and started from home with my grandfather. My grandfather took me to a deserted road and believe me I had never seen such a deserted road and that too in the heart of the city. Yes.. deserted in every sense – ‘The West Circular Road’. The entire road was punctuated with beautiful independent houses, chirping birds, green plants, colourful flowers and to top it all a serene atmosphere – Ideal place to learn anything I thought!

Learning Highlights

 Day 1 – Fear to sit on the bicycle and the bicycle pedal felt like an unmovable piece of iron. 😦

 Day 2 – The first of the many falls. My cycle went unscathed but I was not that lucky. 😦

 Day 3 – Never did my cycle head the direction in which I wanted it to move. But at least it started moving! 😦

 Day 4 – Second fall was avoided courtesy a cute looking girl 🙂

Day 10 – My bending towards the sides of the seat was spoiling my control and also damaging my reputation. How? There were few girls who practise regularly in the same road and they were looking at my cycle driving gimmicks all along. They should have had a nice laugh that day looking at my driving skills. 😦

Day 20 – Bending reduced but my grandfather was threatening to not support me by holding the cycle from behind. 😦

Day 27 – I fell for the second time courtesy my grandfather who was a little over ambitious and decided I can drive without his support. 😦

Day 34 – The best and the worst day! I was driving my cycle and one moment I turned back and to my surprise my grandfather was not holding the cycle any more! J I was ecstatic but then forgot to look ahead. Thump! Thump! FALL!!! 😦 😦

Day 35 – I was waiting for this day! Without my grandfather holding the cycle, I drove for the first time. It was my EUREKHA moment – BALANCE is what I achieved that day. What a Joy! The first balanced ride! I crossed the same girls who saw me struggling a month back. They smiled and I smiled back! 🙂 🙂 🙂

 Today after 35 years as I walk in the same ‘West Circular Road’, it seems at least this little piece of the world has not changed for young people learning their first driving lessons. Even today, I could see another grandfather teaching his grandson how to drive his bicycle. His grandson also would have a story to tell like me. 🙂

 Memories are like oxygen.. They keep us alive!

  1. Anand N says:

    Oru novel effect kedachudhu 😉
    Good da.. Really nice work.. Novel is an exaggeration but still few elements of the content looked like a Novel’s content.. 🙂

    Day 1,2,3…20..30..34 – that sequence was well presented.

    Most importantly, this is a post which everybody will understand. So u have understood ur audience 🙂
    Full credits to u..

  2. Divya says:

    It is the small joys that make a life beautiful !! You have touched upon one of those little joys of childhood with finesse. It definitely did bring memories of my ordeals at learning to ride a bicycle 😉 though not as exciting as Raj’s what with women around 😉 Boys remain boys defying age :p

    You have given your script the punch with your ending that can strike a chord with any reader..

    • krishnan says:

      Thanks Divya..
      Yes.. those small joys in childhood are a pleasure.. I enjoyed recollecting mine when I wrote this post.. 🙂

      And you are right… Boys remain boys defying age.. ha ha..

  3. Childhood sounds akin to unlimited joy ! Its when we get lot of desperate desires and the journey towards them is etched forever in memories. Your post is a replica of your fond memories. But as a writer you added your shades to and especially the end makes one realise what we undergo is a cycle called life. Touching!

  4. Alphs says:

    34 days? 😛
    Thats a bit too much for a guy to learn cycling. Hehe!
    Own story eh?

    Well written Krish. Could sympathise with the lil chap’s yearnings and smile at his success towards the end 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s