Testing your bike riding skills, or street racing could all be a “Dream come true” for any vehicle owner in Chennai during the Pongal holidays. Wish the roads and streets of Chennai remain deserted like this atleast once a month so that the drivers/riders could have some precious “Peace of mind” while on their wheels.
I was indeed taken by surprise by the amount of importance the Pongal festival (Jan 2011) has got in Chennai (I have been overseas for quite sometime). All the State Government institutions were illuminated with colorful and dazzling lights. Trees present in the vicinity of the 5 star hotels were lucky to be decorated with some colorful lights slightly imitating Singapore during festive seasons.
Not knowing that Chennai was wearing this grandeur costume, myself and my wife set out to visit my mother in-law in our newly purchased wonder. Yes, indeed it’s a blessing to ride a two-wheeler in Chennai. Though I own a car, I am cocksure that every two-wheel rider (including bicylces) would feel the pride in navigating the congested roads with their two wheels. Eventhough these bikes do have their drawbacks during the hot and wet season, I will definitely support the two wheelers whole heartedly not for the way their ride their bikes but for the privilege they have in reaching home early.
The cold breeze during the month of January (Chennai people look forward for December and January mainly for this cold weather), was blowing so gently which made me even sacrifice my helmet for that ride. Of course the other excuse in not wearing a helmet is that I find it very inconvenient to talk to the pillion rider especially when it is my wife. That feeling of cold breeze and my wife sitting at the back of my bike was in itself quite a pleasant ingredient for a jolly ride. However, when we covered a few meters in our ride, we found ourselves in a different planet altogether because there was hardly any soul on the road and the traffic was only a bare minimum. Well, this helped me to show some tricks and test my bikes performance at 80km p/h which is not a possible during other days. We enjoyed the ride so much so that we reached our destination so quickly and planned to meet few other relatives who were not in our consideration earlier.
Only regret – Did not capture the empty roads and streets.