Home Turf

If there is any route that I have used the most till now, it should be this 13 odd kilometer stretch from Panagarh to Durgapur. It would be difficult to keep a count on the number of times I have travelled this stretch – right from my initial school days all the way till I graduated from college.
For a childhood me, this was the epitome of a ‘good road’ – back then I had no idea about the huge expanse of interstate highways. This double-laned, decently tarred, arrow – straight moderately wide road seemed to be a motorcyclist’s paradise, where you would not be constantly forced to shift gears to accommodate pesky ricks and unmindful pedestrians. It was an unusually smooth ride, barring a couple of major intersection points. Especially when I graduated from the 100cc PassionPlus ( which was a very efficient and economic motorcycle, to be honest ) to the current 150cc CBZ Xtreme, the ride became all the more pleasing because I could rev up a few notches more. I shudder to think about the fact that we simply did not have any awareness about standard motorcycling gear back then, apart from a standard full faced helmet.

Anyway, given my recent forays into motorcycle trips and increased proficiency in riding at slightly higher speeds, I was itching to have a go at the same roads on the Xtreme. However, the roads are in a complete mess right now, due to large scale renovation and road widening work going on. Multiple deviations, bad roads and gravel strewn all around, combined with the fact that the Xtreme uses a sub-optimum drum brake on the rear wheel, makes it potentially dangerous to speed up on these roads. Though I was able to touch 100 on a couple of instances, it was better not to push it more. I have never been comfortable or exhilarated with excessive speeding – even on completely isolated butter smooth express highways – and this is still a work-in-progress.
Maybe once the elevated expressway is completed, and I manage to somehow bring Serenity here, I will try to push it further.


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