Never Give Up

Sometimes , it feels that inspite of all you do, suddenly you are back to square 1 ! Do you relate to this feel ? :)

It does happen. People make you fell so. Circumstances don't go your way. All the effort you have put in suddenly go for a toss. All the dream castles you build - come tumbling down. Life happens !

What do you do ? What will you do ?

Going through something similar. Then happened to have the IPL on (and I dont usually watch cricket) - when the '60 secs with Shane' came on.

Q. What is your philosophy
A. Never give up

Woowie ! The lamp in your head lights up. You find your mojo ! Rock on ! Never give up !

Night stay at Murud

Last weekend ended up in Murud by chance. The initial plan was to go to Alibag, spend the evening there and be back the next day. This time by car, as S and another friend couple were going to join us.

Left Pune around 2pm and headed out via the old NH4. I wanted to take the khapoli exit after a stop at the hotel RK (Ram Krishna) in lonavala. However, being a sat afternoon, Lonavala was choc a block, and so we decided to move on. Exited at khapoli , went to Pen and crossed over to the road to Alibag. Reached there around 5pm - and oh boy - what a disappointment it was ! The small beach was overflowing with weekenders. Tried to find a hotel - and the best over there did not meet with the ladies approval.

A lunch break later ( it was late for lunch, but still too heavy for being called a snack !), we decided to head out towards Murud and try to find a place. The reasoning was that even if we did not find a good place, we can drive through the night and be back in Pune.

Sunset on the way to Murud
Sunset on the way

The first stop was at Prakruti Beach Resort - which strangely was in a direction opposite from the beach. Next to it was also Sea Touch hotel - again without the sea in sight. The guard at Prakruti disallowed us entry as we did not have a booking ! Hmm..

Kept heading towards Murud and at Murud came to the Golden Swan Resort. It was a neat place - which was really next to the beach ! Luckily for us , there were a couple of rooms available, which after some barganing we got for 2800 per room. Steep price but good rooms. A/C , Tv, the works. Food not included.

Dropping our luggage in the room we had dinner (it was already around 9pm by this time ) and headed out to the beach, where we stayed chatting till midnight. There is something about being out there on the beach in the dark , listening to the sound of the ocean, which is really soothing ! Pitch dark, with a half moon. That did not deter me, and i started experimenting with taking night shots (and cursed myself for not getting my tripod along !). The results are as below.

Moon and the Sea
Moonlit sea

Also tried a shot of the moon at the max 12x zoom afforded by the S5 IS. And the result is something which is on my desktop now !

Cresent Moon

We all turned in at 1am with plan to get up early morning and take pics of the sunrise ( not matter that we were west facing, and the sunrise wont be seen). Alarms set, we dropped off to sleep...
... and promptly turned off the alarm as soon as the cellphones buzzed.

ah well - thats what a holiday is for anyways !

Went into the sea and frolicked there a bit. None of us knew swimming, but we had a great time! No pics, as the camera is not waterproof ! Canon does come out with water proof casings, but I did not have one.

Returned around 10 to the cottages. We had to vacate by 10am actually as the resort was to be shut down for 2-3 days for pest control. Breakfast was quite pathetic. This place has buffet for meals, and by the time we went for breakfast, most of the things had finished off - and still they wanted to charge 150 bucks per plate. Finally after a bit of convincing got them convinced to charge per item basis.

Quack ?
We did plan to go to Janjira, but the plan was dropped as my friend's wife was not feeling well. The way back was almost the same , except at khapoli i took the expressway to pune. We got back quite quickly - took around 4 hours - with a break for lunch on the highway cafe (not good food, but no other option on the expressway).

I would recommend the resort for anyone going to stay. Don't eat there - try other places around if you can.

Thought for the Day

life is far to short to not do what you enjoy.

GQ Ride is Complete

The guys did it !

They covered the Golden Quadrilateral in a relay ride in a little over 4 days ! Amazing !

You can see the legs on BN. More info as it comes out. I have added a cool google map overlay to the post so that you can see the route (approx, not exact) and the change over points for each leg.

/damn. that was so cool !

Round Trip

Rippling Lake
Originally uploaded by vibhu

I went for a ride yesterday morning.

My bike had a bit of problem. Actually a lot of problem with the engine having seized up. Finally with the help of Praveen , we went hero honda workshop hunting and contacted the people at the HH showroom in Pashan, and they then dragged the bike back to their workshop. After a week at their place, i got back the bike on saturday. So , time now to put in some kms. Late saturday night posted on BN about going on a ride on sunday, and smsed a few people. Mostly got nay's as a reply - which was a good thing, cause a start at 7am as originally envisioned did not happen. I got up close to 8am, and was out of the house at 8:30am.

The route i took was Baner -> Chandni Chowk -> Mulshi -> Tamhini Ghat -> N17 -> Pen -> Khapoli -> Lonavala -> Pune. In all 280kms.

Ride to mulshi was a slow one. With people getting up on sunday morning, the small villages on the way were getting crowded. The road was good in parts and real bad in others - quite bumpy. stopped at Disha's Dhaba at mulshi, and ordered Omlet Pav with tea. Also picked up one bottle of mineral water to drink on the way. The stop was 20 mins and then i moved on, looking for a good place to take a few shots. The above pic is halfway between mulshi and Tamhini - you get a good view of the lake.

This stop was a long one. I felt at peace. Alone , and out there with nature. The gentle sound of the waves lapping on the shore. The sound of crickets. The wind. Bliss.
Alone I ride

Shaking off my revere i moved on. Tamhini ghats is real bad now. The road surface is quite bumpy, and it takes all the fun out of the curves. The bike was behaving quite well and sticking well to the road. As I decended from Mulshi, the air started to become hotter. The road comes out at Kolad, and that place smells quite strongly of fish. The sea is near I think. From there took the right towards mumbai - the road is a single lane highway coming from Goa. Road surface is quite good, but the traffic is quite high.

Stopped after a time and saw missed calls and sms update from the GQ. thats when i noticed the leaking engine. The oil had come onto my shoes, and was dripping a bit. Hmm... took a swig of water and thought what to do. I was at the max point, and there was no shorter distance , so just started to ride back.

Took the turn from Pen towards khapoli. This is one great twisting road. Unfortunately my speed was severly restricted due to new piston riding limits and now the oil leakage. Still, it was a breeze going faster than the trucks inching up on the steep incline. Just before lonavala , this road merges with the express highway and for this brief stretch bikes can ride on the highway, and it was an ejoyable ride before taking the exit to Lonavala. At Lonavala stopped for a bit at RK for a limca. Checked the oil again, called the service center guy and talked to him.

Ride from here to Pune was uneventful. was at home at 2pm. Reached the service center at 2:30. The issue was found to be a problem with the engine gasket. The chap replaced that - and said 'sorry'. Man. i really like giving my bike here for service !

All in all, it was a good ride. Back in the saddle again after a long time. Back to riding solo after a long time. Gave a good amount of time to think alone. Also got feedback from the body that i have become soft. I had to stop every hour as the butts would hurt. But I enjoyed every single moment of it !

Ride Safe !

Sunsets and the BN GQ Run

Yesterday evening, I drove to mumbai to see off the guys from BN for their GQ Run.

The drive on the Mumbai-Pune expressway was great ! I had planned to leave around 5pm, but the petrol bunks near my house were shut down due to it being Maharashtra Day/Labor Day. Finally found one and with a full tank of deisel left pune almost around 6pm.

The expressway is one of the best roads in the country without doubt. What also helps is that it is a toll road with only cars there, so one does not have to worry much about people jumping on it from all directions.

Initially the sun was shining right in the eyes - we were driving west towards the setting sun. However, as sunset neared, the sky turned into glorious hues of red and orange. The result was a very pretty picture (please leave comments on my flickr page if you like it !)

Sunset on the expressway

I am not well versed with the mumbai roads, but with help from fellow BN'er Hrishikesh , I was able to find the rendezvous point quite easy.

The GQ Ride

This ride is an attempt by my friends from BN to ride around the Golden Quadrilateral. You can check out more info on the BN GQ blog post.