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Thread: 2 Riders, 1 Bike and 7 Districts on Honda Activa!

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    Rusted ketan_r15's Avatar
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    Smile 2 Riders, 1 Bike and 7 Districts on Honda Activa!

    It's that day 23rd December 2003 and it's today! A lot of things have changed in me. When I look back at me as a rider, I see myself as a kid riding a Honda Activa with a Studds Ninja half face helmet and almost zero knowledge of roads, acceleration, top speed, aerodynamics.. nothing. nothing at all. And when I look at myself today, I see someone riding a much better bike with the gears and a lill bit of knowledge bout bikes, roads and safety while riding.. Someone always eager to learn more. The credit of course goes to xBhp. Learned a hell lot from this web site.

    Why this thanks giving ceremony??

    I had done my life's first ever long ride on two wheels back in 2003. It was my introduction to the world of two wheel touring. I had written a log after we came back from the ride. The word file was hidden somewhere deep into the hierarchy of folders in my laptop. I was searching one particular file and suddenly came across this trip log. Read the entire log once again. All those beautiful memories were relived. It felt as if I have done the ride just a few days back. I unawarely ended up comparing the rider I was then and the rider I am today.

    I would love to share the experience of my life's first ever long ride with you guys. The log was written back in 2003 when I was a kid Trying to post the log as it is. So kindly adjust

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For the time being just the introduction! Will complete the log as I get some free time.

    Dates: Tuesday, 23rd December 2003 - Sunday, 28th December 2003
    Riders: Ketan Nikharge & Amey Kubal.
    Ride: 2003 Honda Activa
    The Seven Districts: Mumbai - Thane - Raigadh - Ratnagiri - Sindhudurg - Pernem(Goa) - Bardez(Goa)
    Odometer reading: Start - 07565 Km. End - 09065 Km.
    Total Kilometers: 1500.
    Total Expense: Rs. 3000/-
    The Fun, The Joy.. The experience?? : Priceless and Lifelong!

    To be Continued........

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    MG
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    Topic Approved
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    My photography page: Gourab Das Photography

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    OMG awaiting detaled log and pix

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    Rusted ketan_r15's Avatar
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    Thanks for approval!
    @ aarunn, Sorry for the delay Will post it by tonight. Was too busy today.

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    Honda Activa was my first ever bike. Before going to Goa, the longest ride I used to do on Activa was to Thane, to my aunty's place. Though I had never been to Goa on my own, on a bike, I had clear idea of the road conditions because we used to go to Goa at least twice a year, by car.

    The ride was planned spontaneously. I wanted to do it a solo ride and I casually shared my plan with Amey, my cousin, before discussing with parents. He liked the plan and wanted to join in. I was more than happy to have a company for the ride and agreed to take him as a pillion. Though the title reads 2 riders, Amey was a full time pillion rider as he wasn't that good with riding. It was me who rode the entire trip - 1500 Kms.

    One of the biggest obstacles of the ride, even before the ride started, was to convince the parents. Not just my parents, but my cousin's parents as well, Because it was my plan, it was my responsibility to take care of Amey

    I think I don't need to write how difficult it was for us to convince our parents for the ride. Anyone can imagine what must have happened when a 17-18 year old boy asks permissions to go to Goa, by road on a 100CC, 7Bhp Scooter It took me almost 15 days to hear those words "FINE.. Do whatever you want to do...!" I was literally on hunger strike for couple of days to get the permission Situation wasn't different at Amey's place. Finally after a lot of efforts and emotional attyachar we both got the permission to go for the ride. I know understand how tough it must have been to someone to allow his/her own Son for such a thing.

    Amey and I had college in those days and therefore we fixed the dates with vacations in mind. 23rd December 2003 was the date fixed for the ride. I can't tell you how much instructions, suggestions, opinions and what not we got in the last 4-5 days before the ride... Staggering Especially from my mom and dad... Literally bugged my head.

    Preparations:

    I didn't have a good helmet in those days. So the first thing I did was, I bought Studds Ninja modular helmet similar to Vega Boolean.

    Next thing on the list was to get the bike thoroughly checked, serviced and get some important spare parts. I went to my uncle's garage which was authorized Honda service center. He check the bike thoroughly, gave us a couple of spark plugs and other spares. He gave us a strip of tablets and asked us to put half a tablet into the fuel tank when ever tank up. I don't know what those tablets were but he said it'll help keep the engine cool and lesser carbon emission.

    The day before the ride was spent shopping other essential stuff like medical kit, a few clothes, woolen gloves, Torch, Film roll for my Olympus film camera(no digital camera ) etc.

    We had decided to leave very early in the morning and hence Amey was supposed to come to my place on 22nd December night. After packing all the stuff and setting an alarm for 3.00am we hit the sack. No need to mention we were not at all able to sleep that night coz of the excitement. After all it was my first ever long ride on Activa.

    Things we carried for the ride:
    1) Few pairs of clothes.
    2) Medical kit(including bandages, anti septic cream, crocin etc)
    3) Torch
    4) Map
    5) Woolen gloves & cotton jackets
    5) Water bottle
    6) Bike Manual
    7) Olympus film camera
    8) and of course enough cash.
    __________________________________________________ __________________________

    Day one - Tuesday, 23rd December 2003 - The taste of touring on Two wheels


    Even though we set an alarm for 3:00 am, we couldn't sleep for the whole night. Half the time was spent checking and cross checking if we have forgotten to pack something and the rest of the time... well the anxiousness and the nervousness didn't allow us to sleep at all.

    Woke up at sharp 3:00 am and got fresh. I had tanked up my bike on Monday itself, so now it was simply stuff the luggage in and get set go. Activa's immense storage capacity was a real boon to us. We had a packed all our stuff in a big haversack. We kept the bag on the footrest/platform. I had the glove box fitted to my bike. So some more luggage went inside the glove box and the rest of the things were dumped under the seat. We both were free off carrying any luggage on our back.

    3:50 am - Left my place and headed towards Sion, my granny's place. Mom and dad followed us in a cab.

    4:10 am - Reached Sion. Met my granny. Sat with her for sometime and then finally got ready for the actual ride. My mom gave both of us some curd to have, a sign of good luck in Maharashtrians.

    4:45 am - Started the actual journey from Sion. Noted down the odometer reading which showed 07565 Kms on it. Mom and Dad followed us till Sion Circle in the cab and finally they took the left turn towards Dadar and we moved ahead towards Chembur. I still remember my mom's face. She was literally on the verge of crying.

    As that was for the first time I was heading out of Mumbai on my own, I didn't know the route via Chembur which we use now a days. We didn't know the route via Airoli either Mumbai guys, can you believe that only route I knew was via Kalwa

    Headed towards Thane and crossing Thane city entered Kalwa. The road to Panvel via Kalwa was in very poor condition. Lot of blind and deep potholes. The headlights of Activa wasn't that great either. Because of all these reasons, we hit a couple of potholes at around 50-60 kmph and I guess the problems which we faced at later stage of the ride had started here on this road.

    While cruising towards Panvel, we lost our way near Belapur and accidentally entered the Belapur city. Fortunately I noticed something wrong before it was too late and asked a local doodhwala() on cycle for directions. He guided us to the correct way and we were back on track.

    It was extremely cold early in the morning and we were forced to wear the woolen gloves. I couldn't get the proper sensation of the throttle or brakes because of the gloves but we had no choice. We wanted a small break and hot cup of tea very badly.

    6:30 am - Took our first tea break at Panvel. Absolutely no idea bout the JNPT road and thus we were passing through Panvel City. Found a small tea stall and stopped for a break. After the tea break, we continued the ride and as we moved ahead we saw a board showing right turn to Panjim. In the haste, we entered the NH17 through a one way lane in opposite direction

    Damn, a policeman stopped us near the Police station which is at the start of JNPT road. Seeing a couple of kids on Activa with MH 01 number plate, he straight away demanded Rs. 600 as fine After a loooong long negotiation and after telling him bout our epic ride, he got impressed and finally settled down for Rs. 50

    The one thing which I had decided to follow religiously and without mistake was to take 10-12 mins halt after every one hour's ride.

    So after an hour's ride we took another small break somewhere near Karnala bird Sanctuary. Time was around 7:30 am. After some 10-15 mins we continued the ride and just before Pen, we came across a huge traffic jam. A container carrier had an accident and the road was blocked. Since we were on a two wheeler we didn't have much of a problem and we easily managed to cross the traffic jam. A little off-roading you see

    8:30 am - We reached Wadkhal. Pulled over to Hotel Milind Krupa or something for breakfast. Had a nice breakfast and well needed hot cup of tea. Tanked up the bike at petrol pump near by and put half a tablet into the tank which my uncle had given to me. Went to an STD booth and called up mom to tell her that all's well

    Well that phrase "all's well" didn't last for long though After making the call to Mumbai we resumed our journey and were cruising towards Goa. The roads from Wadkhal start to improve and we were cruising on a beautiful patch of road at around 60-65 kmph. I was wearing my new Ninja helmet and Amey was wearing his dad's old helmet which didn't have a visor Everyone including myself, had suggested him to get a new helmet or atleast get the visor fitted. But he didn't listen to anybody. It was a long straight road with no traffic at all on our lane. I saw a huge dump truck charging at us at very high speed. It was full of debris. As the truck passed us by, a small stone flew from it and hit right on Amey's right eye lid. You can imagine at what speed that stone must have hit Amey when we were cruising at 60-65 kmph and the truck in opposite direction at even higher speed. Amey screamed loudly and I had to pull over to the shoulder of the road. All I can say is he was lucky that it didn't hit his eye or else situation could have been worse. He washed the eye with some water and we carried on. But his eye swelled after some time and I can only imagine how painful it must have been.

    11:30 am - We reached Poladpur. So far the route was Wadkhal - Pali - Kolad - Indapur - Raigadh - Mahad - Poladpur. As decided we were taking small breaks after every hour's ride. The halt at Poladpur was gonna be a longer once since we knew up ahead was the biggest ghat of our journey - Kashedi Ghat. We had some tea, called up mom to tell her that we were at Poladpur and carried on after around 20 mins.

    The most enjoyable part of the journey was Kashedi ghat. Beautiful road with lots of twisties. We never had a filling of riding an under powered bike even with so much load on it. The engine was absolutely stress free and smooth. We reached to the top of the ghat and stopped at the famous U turn. Enjoyed the beautiful panoramic view, took a few snaps and moved ahead.

    1:00 pm - We reached Khed and had our lunch there. Can't tell you the expressions on the face of the Hotel owner when he came to know that we were heading to Goa on an Activa

    Thereafter we moved ahead taking small halts after every hour's ride and reached Lanja by 5:45 pm. The route was Khed-Chiplun-Sawarde-Sangameshwar-Hathkhamba-Pawas-Lanja.

    Our destination for the day was my father's native place, Pachal in Ratnagiri district. It's a small village exactly 20 kms off the main NH17. We tanked up our bike at Lanja as my dad had told me you won't get good fuel in our village. So tank up at Lanja at any cost. Continued the NH17 till we reached Oni and took the left turn for Pachal. We were off the Goa highway now and on the small SH 111. The road wasn't in great condition. Typical SH with lots n lots of potholes. Dense forest on both the sides and zero traffic. Sometimes not a single vehicle for as long as half n hour. By 6:00 pm it started getting dark and we had to ride slowly avoiding the potholes. It took us almost an hour to cover those 20 kms and by 7:15 pm we reached our place. Everyone was shocked seeing us on a bike especially my aatya(father's sis).

    We got fresh and headed to the market to find an STD booth. Called up mom and told her we reached safely. She let a sigh of relief but was angry when she came to know bout Amey's eye problem. Mom wanted us to cut short the trip and head back to Mumbai instead of going to Goa with Amey's injured eye. That was the last thing I wanted Amey and I had a small chat and after a lot of discussion we decided to carry on with the ride. Called up my mom once again and told her we aint coming back. She was furious but helpless She only said be careful.

    Before heading back home, we went to a chemist and bought eye drops for Amey. Got back home, had a nice dinner and hit the bed. We were dead tired. Our arse were paining like hell. It was for the first time I had ridden a bike for 400Kms in a day. I told aatya to wake us up at 7:30 am the next day and fell asleep. Next up was the ride to GOA
    __________________________________________________ ___________________

    Day 2 - Wednesday, 24th December 2003 - Go Goa with a Close Shave

    We had a very nice sleep on Tuesday night, all thanks to the tiring journey, wonderful climate and the warmth of blanket made of sheep wool! It was very difficult to get out of those blankets and get going. All we wanted was to sleep more. But finally got up at around 7.45-8.00 am. We were literally shivering in the morning. The home we have in our village is not like the ones we have in cities or in most villages these days, made of cement and bricks. It's a typical old fashioned village house made of bamboos plastered with soil and cow dung.

    We took bath and got ready to go to my ancestral house where my uncle stays. It's in a village called as Raipatan, 3 Kms from Pachal. We have our own home, our own temple(we call it Devghar in Marathi) and farm. We took Nilesh, my cousin along with us to Raipatan. Met my uncle and aunt. Worshiped in the templed, spent some time in the farm and got back to Pachal. By then it was 11.00-11.30 am and the climate was bearable.

    After packing the stuff back on to the bike we left for Goa. Crossing Rajapur and riding after some time we entered Sindhudurg district. The roads in this district are simply awesome.

    1:00-1:30 pm - We reached Kankavli and had lunch in Kankavli Market. Hotel Apurva. Bike got a nice half an hour break to cool down. Once done with the lunch, we hit the road once again and were off towards Goa.

    Now here's an interesting part..

    As we moved ahead, we came across this ghat between Kudal and Sawantwadi. I don't remember the name but I guess it's called as Bhoste ghat. It's a beautiful ghat with some sharp and blind turns. We climbed the ghat safely and were almost on the top of it. There was a sharp left hand turn in front of us. Just before that turn we had overtaken an auto-rickshaw and he was a few meters behind us. As we moved ahead, we suddenly saw two huge cows running towards us like crazy We were clueless as to why they are scared and running like this and the very next moment we see a bull even bigger than those cows chasing them and charging in in our direction. It was a "balls in mouth" situation for us. Only I know how I managed to dodge those 3 animals. But that bull went straight on to the auto-rickshaw. He had to go off the road to dodge that bull and he somehow managed to avoid being crashed on to the mountain wall I was watching this happen in my RVM. It was shit scary situation.

    Right at the top of this ghat, there's a small temple, probably of a Goddess which acts as a divider and sits right in the middle of the road. We stopped at that temple like we do usually. While we were praying, the auto-rickshaw reached there. The driver told us how scared he was! And it was quite obvious cause even a slight push by that bull could have thrown the auto out of the road. And when we saw inside the auto, there were 3 small school children. Now we understood how serious the situation was. Saying b'bye to the children we moved ahead.

    2:30 pm - We reached Sawantwadi. We took a small break and called back home. Talked to Mom for sometime. Sawantwadi city is a beautiful place with a lake in the middle of the city. There's a small ghat after Sawantwadi. Though small it's quite risky cause the road isn't in great condition and the turns are quite sharp. You'll find this ghat always covered in shadow cause of the trees surrounding it. After Sawantwadi we were looking for Maharashtra-Goa border.

    4:00 pm - We crossed the Goa border. Roads in Goa are excellent. We were easily cruising at 70-80kmph. We were looking for a restaurant to have cold drink but all we could see was beer bars After sometime found one and stopped for a break. By 4:30-4:45 pm we crossed Mapusa.

    Our two relatives, my granny's brothers, staying at Parvorim, right on NH17. e decided to visit their places first. Both the bungalows are opposite to each other. Both the families were shocked seeing us on bike all the way from Mumbai One of the Grandpas told us that the cops in Goa may harass you after seeing an MH 01 bike. They gave us their contact number and asked us to call them if the need be. He owns a big Hotel and Goa and hence has got quite a few political contacts

    After sometime we headed towards Panjim. By then it was 6:30 pm and the dusk was falling. As it was x-mas on the very next day, entire Panjim was sparkling with lights. Even the entire Mandovi bridge was decorated with lights. Then we decided to visit the place of another relative staying in Panjim. After meeting them, we left for our destination for the day - Kumbharjua. It's a beautiful island with a small village on it.

    There are two routes to reach Kumbharjua. By road via Banastari and Marcella or via ferry from Old Goa. We decided to go via Marcella. Road till Banastari was in awesome condition but then the SH till kumbharjua via Marcella was in real poor state.

    7:30 pm - We reached our home in Kumbharjua. We got fresh and had breakfast. We were supposed to visit another relatives place in goa and head back to Pachal. We went to the market to make a phone call to Mumbai. Mom suggested us to spend a day in Goa and take rest because it would be very hectic to our body riding continuously for 4 days. Everyone Goa also forced us to stay there for one more day and we had choice but to agree

    So there was no hurry now. We had our dinner and fell asleep. Though at 12 0 clock everyone was bursting fire crackers and wishing each other. We woke up and joined the party for time.
    __________________________________________________ __________________

    Day 3 - Thursday, 25th December 2003 - A day in Goa..!


    On 25th December, we got up at around 8:00 am. We then went to the river bank in the back yard of our home. Spent some time sitting on the river bank watching the fishermen do their task. It was simply beautiful. Then we got back home and called up one of our relatives who stays just a few Kms away from Kumbharjua informing them that we are in Goa and visit your home in some time. After taking bath and having the breakfast we left for aunt's place, a place known as Tari. This aunt has a nice restaurant in Marcella as well as an Ice Cream factory. No need to tell that we were greeted with loads of ice creams She then ordered us to have lunch in her restaurant and no where else So the lunch treat was at Hotel Royal Treat

    We then went to Marcella and visited the famous temple of Goddess Shanta Durga. It's an ancient and peaceful temple. I knew that one gets very fresh and good quality Khaja(a konkani food item) in Marcella. So we started looking for one but couldnt find. So we decided to buy it later in the day and headed for the restaurant. Had lunch and left for Panjim. Roamed around for some time and hit the road for Betim. My cousins stay there in Betim. When we reached their place they were having lunch. So we sat there for some time, did chit chat with bros and left for Vere. Another place along the sea shore where my granny's sis stays. Met everyone there and left for Calangute beach. This is one beach always full of foreign tourists When we reached Calangute it was crowded like hell. No parking space, bikes and cars crawling at snail's pace. All thanks to x-mas To add to the crowd and traffic jam, most of the news channel crew were present there with their huge vans to cover the x-mas eve. Somehow found a place to park the bike and we mingled into the crowd roaming here n there. Making funny faces in front of the cameras, shopping, eating, drinking we were having gala time on the beach. Since it was the perfect time for the locals to cash in some extra profit, all the rates were higher than normal, be it food, clothes and yes the water sports as well. We were asked to pay Rs.1200 for the parachute ride We decided to go for the speed boat ride and after long negotiation and with the use of local language dragged the fees down to Rs. 200 per person. Had loads of fun on the boat

    We had decided to leave the beach in half n hour but didn't realize when one and a half hour passed by. It had started to get dark then. While heading back home we stopped at a shop and bought some tees.. the typical Goan tees Reached Kumbharjua just before the dinner. Got fresh, tried the tees had dinner and dozed off. Next day we were supposed to leave for Pachal, the return journey!
    __________________________________________________ _______

    Day 4 - Friday, 26th December 2003 - Here goes my Rear wheel..

    On 26th, we got up early in the morning and got ready by 8:30 am. Had breakfast and left for Marcella bidding good bye to my relatives. It was our last visit to Marcella for shopping before heading to Pachal. We then went to Panjim, near Samrat theater to buy some cashews. Shopping and roaming around did take some time and we finally started our return journey by 11:00 am. It was more of a leisurely ride back to Pachal as we were sure enough to reach Pachal in next 4-5 hours. We took ample breaks to keep the engine away from stress and to enjoy the vistas around.

    As we crossed the Goa-Maharashtra border, the rear wheel of our Activa started giving some problems. It started feeling as if the rear break is jammed and a weird sound started coming from it - a sound as if two metal parts are rubbing on each other. We decided to look into the trouble at Rajapur, the next big village and kept moving. It was a mistake actually. We should have taken care of it at Sawantwadi itself where we had our lunch 12:45 pm. We had lunch in Hotel Chaitanya. People passing by that route do try this hotel for awesome Malwani sea food and gavran chicken.

    We were having great time taking pictures, taking rest under trees on the shoulder of the highway. We were around 70-80 kms from Rajapur and the sound from the rear wheel started increasing. Now we were worried and I pulled over at a place and tried to examine the rear wheel. Since the problem was with the internal part of the wheel assembly I couldn't figure out anything and we decided to move ahead and stop at some good mechanic.

    Now even the speed of the bike was affected. She wasn't feeling as smooth as earlier and even with full throttle she wasn't attaining the usual top speed.

    So we reached at Rajapur and tanked up the bike. Asked the petrol pump attendant for a mechanic and he sent us to a guy near by. He didn't seem like an experienced fella but we had no choice.

    Actually the problem was with the ball bearings. We understood this next day but telling you guys for reference.

    The mechanic found the problem correctly but he didn't have ball bearings to replace. So he told us that he can't replace the bearings but will reduce the sound of friction by repairing the liners We didn't know much about the technical stuff and we were eager to get the problem solved so we agreed and let him do his work. He took out the rear wheel. Did something with the liners(adjusted or polished or something like that) and refitted the wheel. And while doing so he did a BIG mistake. He tightened the rear brake a bit too much. We didn't notice it. He took Rs. 10 from us and we happily left for Pachal.

    It was started getting dark by then and we were moving slowly and steadily. Just after sometime, the mechanic's mistake started showing it's effect on the bike. The speed and pick up of the bike was badly affected and she was running at 30-35 kmph even with full throttle. We couldn't go back to him as we would have had to cross a small ghat to do so and then crossing a ghat with bike in that condition would have meant more trouble. So we decided to go to Lanja. We were literally dragging our bike at 30 kmph. It was completely dark then. The small Lanja ghat started looking scary and all sorts of thoughts were running through our minds. What is the bike breaks down in the ghat? What are we gonna do then? How will we reach home? Will we get good mechanic at Lanja?

    We reached Lanja and found a mechanic. He was a Bajaj motorcycle Mechanic and therefore didn't know bout the Honda scooters. But after listening to our problem he bent down to have a look at the rear wheel and he was simply shocked.. The drum of the rear wheel had become red hot due to the friction. It had gotten so hot that it changed the color of the wheel permanently. We asked him for ball bearings but he said you'll get Honda spare parts only at Honda showroom in Ratnagiri. Ratnagiri is approximately 50 kms from Lanja. He told us that he has loosened the rear break a bit so that at least the speed of the bike will recover to some extent.

    He suggested us to take the bike to Ratnagiri slowly, stay there for the night and get the wheel repaired next day. He even called up to the showroom and checked the availability of the spares. We decided to go to Pachal as my aatya must be worried about us and get the bike repaired the next day at Ratnagiri. All thanks to him for the brake adjustment which helped in recovering the speed a bit. But he suggested us not to speed up as the drum was already hot and more temperature may cause serious damage to the tyre tube. We thanked him and moved towards Pachal. We reached Oni and took the left turn towards Pachal leaving behind the NH17. Now we were riding on the eery SH111 in complete darkness. That highway surrounded by thick forest. To add to it we were advised not to speed up. As we were moving slowly, Amey and I saw something crawling on the road but couldn't avoid going over it. It was a damn big snake. We were shit scared and completely forgot the mechanic's advise and ripped the bike as hard as we could We reached home by 7:45 pm. We were dead tired and worried hence had our dinner early and went to sleep. Because of the extra day in Goa we missed the famous District level Bull Race. Nilesh, my cousin told us the stories of the race.

    Next day we were supposed to go to Honda Showroom at Ratnagiri to get the wheel repaired. Since the showroom doesn't open before 10:00 am, there was no point leaving early. So we decided to leave by 7:00 am and told aatya to wake us up.

    Day 5 to be continued..!
    Last edited by ketan_r15; 04-28-2010 at 12:51 AM.

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    Wow..Your first ride is always special to you.

    Waiting to see some film camera action
    Last edited by beruoist; 04-19-2010 at 09:43 PM.

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    OMG ketanbhau @ that age with pillion & that bike, looks interesting triplog & pics too , waiting for that!
    My Saddlesore Ride

    &

    stay tuned for My Bun Burner Ride

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    amazing!!
    when i got my DL i took my activa for a spin on highway, and i know it is seriously a city commuter!!!!
    how you managed 1500kms?
    i am tihinking!!

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    That's amazing trip dude.. if any pics.. please do upload..

    activa is so comfortable when riding in proper position. I can drive activa as long as i get chance to ..

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    Its not the age of activa but that bike is still good...sturdy and strong. Mine too was the same first two wheel. First long trip was to Panvel. Funny i found it tiring...

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