The buzzword or buzz phrase for some time now has been the rising price of oil, which one of my friends eloquently put in context saying, “Sala, Pamela ko dekh kar itna nahi utha hoga.” But has the price risen so high that it has hit even the price of your innocence?
I am not that old to forget that once upon a time when I was six my folks decided I should graduate from ‘garah number bus’ and I came to possess my first set of wheels – a spanking new hand-me-down Avon cycle.
That was what I rode around town on, had my first accident on, what I rode to the market to buy my first set of trump cards. That was what acted as one of the goalposts in our para football matches. That was my escape route whenever my mom found some reason to flex her vocal or arm muscles.
The best part was the maintenance. Even with pocket money of about “when you need money, ask and if the reason is satisfactory, ill give you,” I could maintain the bike. At the most, it required getting a spoke on the wheel when an over-exuberant ‘Pele-ka auald’ slammed the ball into the bike. Even then, if your mom was a good negotiator, the ‘Pele’ of afore-mentioned ‘Pele-ka auald’ would pay for it.
I could just ride around town for hours aimlessly and when I felt like it, race everything from a cat to an auto. Heck, it even could double up as Street Hawk if I so wished.
And now … Anti-cycling complaints range from “It’s too hot” to “It’s too far” with my personal favorite being, “I’ve forgotten!!”
As far as I know, there is no more environment-friendly mode of travel than a cycle. They’re cheap, don’t pollute the air, and provide more miles per calorie of energy than any other mode of getting around known to mankind.
Everybody’s wondering what they’re gonna do
Everything’s a mess and folks are feeling blue
If your troubles get you down so much you can’t abide
Get on that bicycle and ride
Yeah, get on that bicycle and ride
‘Neath the sunny skies or along the oceanside
Just ride, ride, ride, ride, ride