It can catch you unawares. On a long ride out into the wild. Or in a short day trip out of the city. On independence day- 15th August, 2012, we rode in a group of three to Nandi Hills on the outskirts of the city. I have modified the C5 slightly, with a taller handlebar that makes for relaxed riding on long commutes. Our way up was a fast clip early in the morning, with the climb to Nandi Hills being crowded with motorcyclists from all over the region. A couple of frenzied hours spent gawping at beautiful machines and taking many photos later, we made our descent for a spot of breakfast.
As we rode down, I switched to neutral and killed the ignition on a whim. Soon however, I was coasting down the hill at 60kph,with 180 odd kgs of heavy metal between my legs. The C5 is an amazing creature. Never had I imagined going so quietly, so fast on a machine known the world over for its guttural thump. There I was, silent as a cat, foot pegs scraping the bends, overtaking running vehicles with casual nonchalance. This was as perfect as it could ever be- me and my machine in absolute communion. No words spoken. No throaty roars from the exhausts. No clunks of gears falling into place. No revs from the throttle. Just wind on my face. And the fresh morning chill awakening every single nerve end in my body. Twisties all the way down. Bliss. A full 20 minutes of silent running later I coasted to our rendezvous – a roadsdide dhaba, for our breakfast treat.
The ride into the city after breakfast was pretty mundane, even annoying at times, my mind cursing the various autowallahs, taxiwallahs and hurried commuters who are constantly a menace on the city’s streets.
Home and a hot cup of tea in hand, I sit pondering my down hill run. Motorcycling magic occurred that day, and I shall fondly remember that ride for just the same reason.