So after living my whole life with a two-wheeler-phobia (do they have a word for it?), a couple of years back, I decided to get curious to know what's beyond my fears. And curious did I get with a friend's scooty. Attempting to mount a scooty without even knowing how to balance a bicycle was, yes, biting off more than I could chew. After two nights with 4 guys holding the scooty while I fought to tame it, I fell. Wait! I was fine... but the scooty wasn't. The next day, the scooty was taken in for repairs. And out of guilt, my curiosity took a backseat.
Last semester, I got curious... again... with my brother's bullet. But looking at how heavy the bike looked and knowing how narrow and steep the roads in Aizawl are, I decided to start humble. Humble meaning my roommate's hand me down bicycle.
I fell a dozen times before I could learn how to balance it.
I will always remember the first time I cycled on an 'actual' road. Nancy, my roommate was close-by, guarding me when all of a sudden, I lost my balance and fell. It must have hurt because I remembered lying in the middle of the road with the bike on top of me. Nancy lost all her manners that day and laughed at me all sprawled out on the road. I, on the other hand, attempted to get up only after seeing vehicle lights around the bend of the road.
Battle scars?? Hardly. Except for half a dozen bruises, scraped knees and palms, a superficial cut in the stomach (yes, right on the tums) and a sprained lil' toe which swelled up to the size of my big toe in a few hours and turned purplish the next day. Hardly anything at all!!
It took me three weeks before I could muster up the courage to cycle on a road. That night, I ran over a peaceful-sleeping dog. I screamed and apologized altogether at the same time. I didn't know to who I apologized to... I think it was the dog, hoping I wouldn't get bitten by it. Well, it worked. The dog barked loudly and ran away. I've never seen that dog in that part of campus again!
Have I ever mentioned that drama just follows me? My very first ride downhill, the brakes on the bike were broken. So you can just imagine what happened to me and the random security guard in my path! Three words. Crash. Boom. Bang.
It was months before my next encounter when I hit a parked car and set off the car alarm. I would pay good money to see myself panicking and running away before the car owner could come out. The next day, I was walking by the same car when I noticed a huge dent right where I hit the car. I posted a note with my name and phone number... mentally of course. I am such a loser!!
My ultimate encounter happened a couple of days ago when I fell trying to pass a bike and an auto both coming on the wrong side of the road. Seriously, this time, it wasn't my fault. I had no cuts but only a few bruises. I was sore the next day. In fact, too sore that by nightfall, I could hardly move. I went to a doctor and took some X-rays.
Well, now I sit here staring at my X-ray sheets, my head still hazy from the painkillers and my ribs firmly taped up. It hurts each time I giggle and I have to hold my side each time I laugh.
"Multiple rib fracture" The doc told me, "No jumping, prancing, dancing, rigorous exercise and absolutely no cycling for a month. Take it easy. And don't lift heavy stuffs. You'll be fine in a few weeks".
Hmm..... With Mizo Kut Season and North-East Night just around the corner, I wonder how will I survive??? I guess I have to kiss the Cyclothon attempt goodbye!
Let the month pass by, and I promise myself, I will mount the Machine.... once again!
I still have along way to go....
I still have to conquer The Bullet!!