And that’s how I consider my trip from Chennai to Bangalore. Seriously, my blax trips in XL have been longer. 7 hours straight. The only perceptible difference I could make that my glorious bums had crashed out, they were dead.
So many people advised me to make a trip to the temple before the trip. Considering that I was passing through Kanchipuram, the city of a thousand temples, it wouldn’t have been much of a deal. But if I do need to pay homage, it ain’t the one above, it would be to two buggers minting money in Mountain View, California, United States. Man, Google Maps rocks. I didn’t need anything else (leaving aside the HP & BP outlets, plus the lone Sarvana Bhavan hotel on the way)
So having mapped out the route the previous night, I started out from my gmom’s place at around 5.45 a.m. Shit, the whole family was up, to send me off. It couldn’t have been any more different had I been going out for a war or something. Innumerable advice, a list of helpline contact numbers and instructions of dos & donts (including the traditional “dont talk or accept anything from strangers”)
Roads in TN rock. Seriously. Leaving apart a few undergoing construction inside the city, I did not encounter a single porthole on the way. Mind you, I speak only for TN roads. About the 30 odd km of Karnataka I travelled, that’s a completely different story.
Getting back to the story I touched the NH4 in less than 20 odd minutes. Surprisingly there was very less traffic on the roads, with only a few intercity buses and trucks. Maintaining an average speed of 80 odd km, I was crusing away to glory listening to Metallica & GNR at full volume. To others on the road, I would have surely looked like an idiot. My dress code – a bright red Reebok Tee, blue burmudas, shoes with white socks, ipod earphones clinging on and a Sony cam hanging from my neck. I didn’t give a damn. I was free.
First stop – Kanchipuram. Had to upload as well as download. Entered the city, looking for a decent restaurant. Voila, Sarvana Bhavan to the rescue. 20 mins later, and lighter by some 50 odd bucks, I was back on the road. Decided to check out a few temples, but left the city as the sun was coming up fast.
On the highway, the traffic had slowly picked up, with a good number of cars traversing by. Till now I was the king, I was the one overtaking all the buses and lorries. No longer. I wonder why the government spends money putting up boards citing speed limits. On NH4, the speed limit was 40kmph. Man, even cycles were going faster than that. Most of the cars just whizzed by at speeds exceeding 120+
Second stop – outside Vellore city. This was more of a break for my bike than me. Clicked a few pics. But didn’t spend much time, the sun was up, it was heating up slowly. I always thought travelling alone on 6 lane highways would be fun. Wrong. I was quite bored by now. You hardly found any dhabas or any of that kind on these highways. The roads were straight, without much happening on the road. Man, if I had cruise control on my bike, I could have just gone of to sleep. Thankfully I had NH46 to look forward to. Atleast by the blogs and articles I read about, this place had a decent number of climbs and turns.
Wrong again. But then the surroundings were better, with more tree cover and a few hills. I made my third stop about 50 odd km away from Krishnagiri. The bike was running low on fuel so put in a few liters of petrol. Attendant gave me a weird look reminding me about my awesome attire. I decided to put my camera away, as it is I wasn’t clicking much pics on the road.
A hour later, I touched Hosur and crossed the border into Karnataka. Till now, I didn’t have to use my horn even once, there wasn’t a single traffic signal I had to wait for. No longer. Huge traffic. Big potholes on the road. Overbridge construction going on in the middle of the roads. Wide rainwater (or gutter water, who knows!) puddles all over the place. IT hub, my foot. I wonder what IT companies see in Bangalore that they invest so much in this city. It took me over an hour to cross the last 30 odd kms.
I reached my guest house finally at 12.40ish. Decided against stopping over for a bite. Headed directly for the bed, crashed out.
Chennai – Bangalore Trip
Distance – 375 kms
Time : 7 hours (6 hours driving + 1 hour in breaks)
Avg speed : 60+
Moolah – 400Rs Petrol + 60Rs Food
Feelings – Top of the world, Happiness, Elation, Tired, Bored, Dead