i, THe biker
30 Year Old
No. of Years of riding motorcycles : 17,
Kilometers done (appox) : 70000
For you as a woman, what does it mean to be a motorcyclist?
Unfortunately, motorcycling has always been considered to be a man's world by our countrymen. Nothing too surprising as the fairer sex,in our country, has been seldom given the freedom it deserves.
Of course, all this needs to be changed & I feel it is infinitely better to become the Change, rather than to wait for one. This is exactly where a motorcycle helps me. It feels so liberating to ride a bike; biking is something that I feel compelled to undertake. The ecstatic feeling,thrill,sense of freedom and Power that a motorcycle provides have no parallels. When riding, it is like I am always in control of my environment. Being a motorcyclist not just gives me a distinct sense of satisfaction but also lets me be the change that I've always wanted to bring to my society of self-motivated,independent women who enjoy finer pleasures of life.
How has motorcycling changed you and your life?
Motorcycling has changed me quite a lot. I personally feel it has made me a better person. It gave
me more confidence, better interpersonal & riding skills. The trips
have taught me not-to give-up and hang-on till you make it! And last
but not the least, that the world indeed is a beautiful place. It
taught me that no matter what terrain, what region, what language,
what religion/caste, etc. You always find good people around! :)
My mantra has always been :"Believe in yourself".
I would want to wind up saying- Its your
perception about yourself that matters the most and not the others. So
live life BIG, make an attempt to achieve your dreams.
"Live life like there is no tomorrow because you live only once!"
How would you justify the inherent dangers and risk involved in motorcycling?
Riding a motorcycle is a feeling like none other. Firstly the thrill of being at on with a sale powered 2 wheeled machine is just unmatchable than nay other activity in the world. The risks involved(thanks to the amazing road conditions that prevail in India) make the enjoyment heighten the sense of enjoyment; giving you an off-the-road feel while actually on road. Its a mixed feeling!
If COMPLETE RIDING GEAR (helmet, armor, knee-guard, carbon gloves and riding pants) was worn by the rider and pillion while complying to full safety riding measures and tips; it would only justifying the risks and dangers involved to quite some extent.
The feeling one experiences when motorcycling is unmatchable and overrides else.
Tell us briefly about your 2 most memorable incidents involving you as a motorcyclist?
Funny: I was on the Leh ride which is very well-known for its exotic scenery & was overlooking the beautiful view atop the ghat.While looking at the road on &off,I suddenly see my friend headed straight into a mountain.It was like she saw it & chose to go & hug it.The funnier part was that even I was tending to go & hug the river flowing down but seeing my friend do similar thing kind of shook me enough to regain my senses & focus on the roads more than the scenery!
Scary: One of my bike trips to Konkan,I was riding & the sun'd just set.It was beginning to get darker & soon it was night.Being a "No night-rides" person,I just went blank suddenly at 1 point.My intuition told me to break/slow down.When I could finally see(came out of the blank),there was a car which was preceded by a truck halted right in ahead of me(dist<5ft). It was scary!
As a motorcyclist, how have you contributed to the society/brotherhood and plan to do so in the years to come?
I have been a core, active member of The Bikerni since its inception. I believe in contributing to the society in a way that is really practical and matters like organizing rally s, events for women empowerment, awareness of cancer, AIDS, safety awareness, exclusive all-women rides cum expeditions. I have also tried to make my mark in the biking community by achieving Limca Book of Records-2012 as a part of Bikerni Team to be Asia's only all women biker group(10) to ride to Khardung-La, world's highest motorable road. I feel this would set a benchmark for women empowerment and aspiring fellow women motorcyclists.
I also intend to devote more time towards social causes as part of long riding trips.
What are the best and the worst things about being a motorcyclist, especially a female motorcyclist, in India?
BEST&WORST THINGS-REACTIONS: They don't really matter to me very much. It feels good
though when someone acknowledges you for riding the motorcycle & says:
"Hey, you ride pretty well." But they normally trail off
saying:"I always felt women don't ride that good".
Negative reactions are there all the time. Right from the other guy on
streets riding a Funky looking but not-so-powerful Indian bike wants
to overtake you, comment at you, at times even try to intimidate you; just because his 'Male EGO' is hurt! Its kind-of depressing that in a still male-dominant society, we(women) have to prove our mettle at everything to make our standpoint & carve a mark. And that people,even other women don't always believe in us or even themselves.
I feel proud to be a female motorcyclist,breaking the bars of idiosyncrasies and gender based discrimination.
Golden Question : How do you feel when you ride?
Everything about biking is great. From the sense of power, control, freedom, to experiencing bliss, the adrenaline, right till the "I don't care who rules the world" feeling! Biking is a way of life for me... Its my religion. When I ride, I feel inner peace, solitude(when needed) and truly ONE with myself. It's Nirvana to me!