It all started innocently enough with some instructions delivered by the great Rasik Bhai. He informed all and sundry to meet up in front of the signal on the Western Express Highway which goes to Cine Magic at 5.30pm. Of course there was a reasonable amount of confusion assembling and after Alok lead us a merry race (we actually had Rasik screaming like a banshee running after Alok as he criss-crossed the signal), we finally left the signal at around 6.30pm (after fresh instructions were issued to Alok). At this point we were Rasik, SP, Alok, Jitu (and I was pillion). Met up with Varun on his 500 (ex-police job) at Dahisar check-naka. Jitu and Varun set off together as the others waited for Sachin and Rhea to finish some work on their bull.
Now for the low-down about the place we were going to and the route followed. Around 140kms from Mumbai, Kelva beach is a beautiful beach on the Konkan Coast at the start of Mumbai’s mango country. The trip to Kelva was after the sunset and we really were enjoying the fresh breeze and the beautiful roads. The highway ride (Western Express – NH8 till Manor) was superb and we made excellent time to Manor. There we stopped at this petrol pump where we caught Sachin Tendulkar’s wicket with some delightful, salt-less, spice-less fare and some superb drinks, namely Jalpa – the pink, Benydryl imitation with some soda for fizz (courtesy Jitu). Sounds good, especially since the alternative was Gina – local lemonade (there will be a photo to follow – I promise…heh heh).
Thereafter it was a left turn at Manor, leaving NH8 onto the state highway to Palghar and beyond to Kelva. The road was quiet and almost immediately the Ghats (there are 2 ghat sections) started. Jitu promptly proceeded to use his Bull as an earth mover and try and tunnel a way through the mountain. After some gentle whispering by yours truly (arre pillion kuch tho kaam karega na) he was convinced it was better to ride on the road itself. My advice would be to take the curves slowly as some of the hairpins can be tricky in the night. With a couple of bad stretches of road safely traversed we were at the hotel Mauj at Kelva where we met up with the gang.
Sachin & Rehana, Paresh Ding Dong wallah, Rasik, SP, Vishy, Varun, Alok, Poonacha, Jitu and I, were thereafter happily boozing, smoking and singing the night away. Well, we must have cleaned out Kelva of all Beer, Whiskey, Vodka, Rum and Ciggies, courtesy Mr. Raut of Mauj (good friendly fellow). Oh and the fried fish just kept on cccoooommmmiiiinnnngggg!!!!! AAaaahh!!! And of course we had to keep our appointment with the beach at 2.00am where Varun and his bull kissed the sand and Vishy kissed the mattress (lets just say he was in a better world). But that was better than Varun’s claim to kissing the mattress (among other things) for SIX hours straight. What a thing to hear at 3.00 in the morning eh Rasik…Jeez.
Next morning there were the customary drag races on the beach with everyone eating the dirt from Rasik’s “Godspeed”. The 350’s trying game fully to keep up. We traversed the length of the beach (at 7kms it’s the longest in the area). But the sand made it tricky riding and Varun’s bike liked the beach so much she just kept kissing the sands and didn’t want to leave, actually it was the wet sands which were a problem. When parking on the beach please do use/carry your own stone (a la SP) for support. There is also a small fort (janjira) which becomes accessible only during low tide. We checked it out from a distance. Being a Sunday the beach was also quite crowded and the bulls came in handy to search for a lonely spot. Good fun. Well after racking up a HUGE bill of Rs. 4400 (all inclusive) for the 11 of us, we started back around 12.30 pm.
The return trip was great and we could appreciate the scenery we missed last night (esp the Ghats). Maharashtra is really at her best after the rains and the trip back was finished in fits and starts with stops for drinks, to massage the derriere and of course lunch at a rickety shack on the highway (near Virar) where we gorged unlimited for the grand sum of Rs.45 per head (inclusive of Rasik fraternizing with the local cow). After that it was next stop home sweet home for a warm water bath and some much needed sleep.
That was one superb ride with new friends I hope to maintain for a very very long time and I’d just like to end with a great thanks to everybody (esp Jitu) for making it a grand ride and for accommodating an as yet bike less hombre. End of trip maine solid kasam kha lee ki for the next trip I’m gonna be on my own bike ma kasam… Gonna book me a brand new 500cc in a week or two. Wish me luck that I get a great piece… ;-))
Cheers and Peace