Going Bananas over Bananas!
Our crew determinedly ploughs through some tough road and weather conditions. Read on as together they refuel and keep each other going…
No. of kms covered: 268, Total kms covered: 618
No. of hours ridden: 20.5 hours (including a 3.5 hours stopover)
Cities covered: Santalpur-Radhanpur-Sihori-Chitrasani-Abu Road-Pindwara-Sirohi
Did you know Banana is the top cycling food? As our Crew nutritional expert Ms. Nivedita mentions, “Bananas are like the saviour for cyclists or any athlete. They are nutritious and eradicate both hunger and thirst pangs. Any cyclist or athlete ensures that they eat a banana before they leave their house. It is easy to carry and consume. One banana can keep us going for a long period of time!”
So, imagine our crew’s distress when they were unable to find any bananas till the afternoon of Day 2. And when they chanced upon the yellow miracle in Deesa, they grabbed them as travelers in a desert would grab a pail of water!
Day 2 started off at 5 am from Santalpur. Today the going wasn’t easy. The road conditions weren’t ideal. As gravel flew off the muddy road, it proved difficult for the thin tyres of the cycle to roll with ease. Also, the blazing sun was literally shooting off reflective, blinding heat waves from the very depths of the concrete road. This drastically affected Preeti’s speed.
Also, the crew realised how exhausted they were from the lack of sleep and long run the day before. Collectively they decided to halt their ride at 11am. “As crew members we manage to grab naps in the car and tend to tire less. However, Preeti and our driver are the ones who truly need to conserve their energy and rest when overexerted.” explains Nivedita.
They found a brand new Dhaba 3 kms before Sihori (so fresh from the oven that it still hadn’t been named and the toilets unconstructed!). They napped in the open air on charpoys under the breezy shade of the trees away from the energy sapping heat. Then woke up to some simple but delicious fare in shiny new vessels. And then back again on the charpoy for some well-deserved sleep. Their driver slept like a log and they all woke up refreshed and ready to take on their expedition. They were also joined by their crew member Mr. Mayank Meda at this point. At 2.30 pm Preeti took off and the rest followed 10 minutes later after wrapping things up.
At around 5.00 pm, they entered the city of Deesa (this is only the second city after Bhuj that they have entered. Else every other town/city has been bypassed). This is where they found their long-awaited bananas! Their search for this lovely fruit led to a detailed discussion in their car. Their well-informed driver Mr. Sandeep Shelar asked them if they had encountered the Kerala and Kolkata bananas. Which gave rise to some hard-core research on the fruit!
A chai break 15 kms on the outskirts of Deesa was when the crew spent time talking about ReBirth and organ donation. Ms. Nivedita embodies a brilliant perspective on the concept of awareness, “Our short chai breaks in chai shops, is when we spread ReBirth’s organ donation message. Most people do have some idea about organ donation or have at least heard of the concept. But how to go about it or the process involved is less known. True awareness is equipping people with information which makes them proactive. When people take the initiative to register themselves and approach hospitals that’s when the awareness will have been truly created. And that is what our aim is, when we will genuinely feel fulfilled.”
At 9.22 pm our undeterred crew entered Rajasthan. The last 50 kms, our Crew chief Mr. Ghanshyam took over the wheel, thus relieving the driver and insisting he rest in the side seat. They were also continuously in touch with Preeti over Bluetooth for moral strength.
At 1.30 am they finally halted for the night at an Indian oil petrol pump in Sirohi.
Ms. Nivedita signs off with some interesting snippets about their driver Mr. Sandeep, “He is the soul of our crew and takes care of each one of us. From an keeping eye on Preeti’s water bottle, urging us to refill it, to finding the best spots and positions for pictures to being well versed with all the roads, he is a mine of information. He is well travelled and a champ!”
Tomorrow we shall introduce this spectacular crew member. Till then, keep spreading the message!
Blog by : Arohi Bhimajiani