My brother had an old kinetic Honda , which he had bought while he was in 12th standard so that he could attend tuitions for IIT – JEE , AIEEE, CET and of course normal syllabi. I would ride it often even though I was underaged against the Indian law, but would refrain from taking it to main roads to avoid traffic and traffic police. That kinetic Honda was the only motored two wheeler during those days, as my father was in Chennai and would come only during the weekends and he didn’t need one, however during May of 2006, he was transferred back to Bangalore and he needed one. He was looking for options to buy one motorbike, I suggested him to buy an autogeared moped like Honda Activa or Honda Dio, with the intention of riding it to tuitions early in morning and during weekends, but he was looking for a motorbike as he felt motorbikes were safe when compared to moped owing to larger wheel radius and telescopic suspension, of course there are mopeds these days that have telescopic suspension, he was a professional rallyist during his late 20s and so had a liking for bikes over scooters or mopeds. I also suggested my father to buy Royal Enfield bullet, with the intent of using it to college few years later and somehow convincing him to buy another vehicle, but he declined it stating it was heavy and hard for his age, I finally gave up suggesting him bikes after he shouted at me after losing his patience over my repeated suggestions. One Saturday noon, he was waiting for me outside my school gate, he had learnt his lesson that to not come inside the school and have a word with my teachers owing to an episode of him being in a apologetic position resulting from one of my many escapades, he was carrying a huge envelope, I suspected that he wanted to come to my school and catch me red handed, but he opened my bagpack’s zip kept the envelope and took me to honda showroom situated opposite to my school, I realized that he had bought the newly launched Honda shine, 125 cc 4s, with disc brakes and self start, it was one lovely vehicle, I have million memories with that bike, never really wanted to discard that bike when I bought another bike 10 years later, but had to sell it of due to space constraints. I was super excited about the purchase, I knew my father would always go for a honda owing to brand loyalty, since then I have remained a honda loyalist as well.
My father was very particular that I shouldn’t ride until I turned 18, but he would let me park the bike outside our gate, I was happy that I learned how to park the bike in center stand, I would wash it every Sunday mornings to keep it shining. My father had theoretically taught me how to change gears, which gear to ride in which speed, how to hold and release the clutch, inquisitive as ever, one Saturday afternoon my father was taking an afternoon nap, he fell asleep on the sofa while watching TV, I noticed that the bike key had dropped from his pocket, I stealthily picked and went out without making any noise. I slowly unlocked the bike, cautious enough not to start the engine which would wake my father, despite the bike having the least engine sound, I pushed it towards the end of the street, got on it and started the engine, it took me few times to release the clutch, when I got it successfully, I felt the adrenaline rush my veins and changed gears in succesion , felt adventurous enough to take it to main road, was riding at a slightly higher speed, but was not reckless, this trait I inherited from my father, respecting the machine and the road. I went to BDA complex hoping to see my friends and impress them with my newly picked up skill, in those days riding anything higher than a bicycle was considered cool, but none were hanging out. Still ecstatic about learning the bike entered a street without realizing traffic police would be in that street, I wasn’t skilled enough to escape them, so stopped, looking at my face they knew I wasn’t 18, one constable took the keys, I pleaded them to let me go and hurled fake promised that I wouldn’t do that folly again, the inspector didn’t budge, I didn’t even have money to pay them and go, He asked my father’s contact number, my father didn’t have a mobile phone back then so gave my landline number, when he dialed that number, unfortunately my grandmother answered it, when she heard that it was a police officer she panicked and was in tears due to shock, she passed the phone to my father, he spoke and agreed to come in few minutes. He wanted to teach me a lesson and did not turn up for another hour and a half, officer was pestering me by asking about my father, I sat on the footpath railing tensed, but father was happily sipping coffee and watching a show, he finally showed up spoke to the inspector and received the keys, to my surprise inspector did not take any money as a fine, he just warned me and let us off. My father did not shout at me or was silently mad at me, he was laughing in his sleeves, he got on the bike and I was about to get on it, he said “go home, I am going out for sometime” and drove away. I was furious that he didn’t even drop me home which was just two blocks away and did not even give me money to eat something, also I was scared to go home after realizing the reactions of my mother and my grandmother.