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Thread: MOON Ride

  1. #1
    Addicted tripster's Avatar
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    Default MOON Ride

    Like most men I like to plan everything to the minutest details, at the very last moment and end up doing nothing. The idea of planning my honeymoon struck me a bit late. While most of the people do it 2 months before I started to start thinking of planning it after the D Day. But it was kind of delayed by my subconscious as I always wanted to go on my honeymoon astride my Bullet (Athato) which according to the naive brain of mine required no planning. Ever since I had got Athato, I kept dreaming about a long ride. I travelled vast distances on Google Maps getting high doing it, but never mustered up the balls to do that. I was suffering from BSS (Ball Shrinking Syndrome, a fancy word I came up with for my cowardice). Nevertheless I asked her where she wanted to go for honeymoon. She gave me the look which could kill and said I have never seen sea and snow, you decide. Ladakh came to my mind but BSS struck again. So the sea it was.
    I had recently joined Wanderlust Motorcycle Club. It has bulleteers with riding experices in thousands of kilometres. Needless to say the country had been traversed by them. In the company of these thunder gods I started to overcome my BSS and plan my ride.
    The initial plan was as follows
    Nagpur>Kuntala water falls (on Nagpur-Hyderabad 250 kms)>Goa(via google maps)>Western Ghats(had the route laid out on a silver platter by a senior Bulleteer,Sagar Da)>Lonar Crater Lake (via google maps)>Nagpur.
    I had bought riding shoes, knee guards, jacket and gloves for both of us and saddle bags. Athato had been serviced. The ride was actually cancelled twice meanwhile Athato had done about 1000 km already. I decided to get it serviced in Goa. Noob decision. More on that later. This was all I had planned. I had much to learn. This by the way is a rookie level ride. So veterans may please forgive my euphoria and obvious observations by considering me a first timer.

    Here it goes-

    Day 1-28th September 2014. Lessons Learnt

    Nagpur>Gosikhurd>Warora>Wani>Kuntala>Nirmal. Approx Distance Covered-400km

    The initial sleeplessness wasnít there. It was replaced by early waked upness. I had planned to be on the road by 6.30am, but was wide awake by 4 am. Had done all the packing already so had nothing to do and started to stare the ceiling. After sometime got the natureís call I was waiting for and went to attend it concluding that I was a bit eccentric too which helped to block the BSS.
    Anyway we Xbhpís Nagpur members had been trying to do a G2G for quite a many times but were not able to do so. Somehow this Sunday almost everybody could come and I did not want to miss it. So I decided to take a long detour. It was nice to meet up with fellow xbhpians. The ride to Gosikhurd was good. We had beautiful tree lined roads for the last leg. Had breakfast on reaching there and after the good byes and ride safe wishes, we started for the destination of the day Kunatala. Initial route was a familiar one as my work site is the same. I really started to feel the trip after I was on unfamiliar roads. Google took me for a ride by making me leave the longer and faster four lane and go through a shorter potholed double lane finally to join the same bloody four lane which was now a potholed four lane. The faith on Google started shaking. While we were off-roading on the four lane I got a call from the Road Master. He gave my exact position. I was stunned. Came to know he was having lunch a few kilometres back.
    About Road Master aka Rajesh Da-There are tourers. There are ďtheĒ tourers. And there are ďTHEĒ tourers. He is above all these. He knows roads along with their craters and breakers. Hence lovingly and respectfully he is called Road Master Gogo. My wife initially thought he was an app. Hehehe. He helped me plan realistically via best roads all the through the trip. He was a great help. Else I donít know how I would have completed the trip (Google maps is not dependable. I learnt it the hard way). He is also my Mo Bro (We have handlebar moustaches). He
    So the Road Master told me not to miss the Pochera falls which was along the way few km shy of Kuntala and I missed it. He was baffled how I missed it even after reading the sign and directions. Well this was my first navigation mistake. I forgot to leave the four lane and go below it for Pochera. Oh by the way I had entered Telangana and the road was smoooooooth. Was doing danger speeds of 80kmph (please bear in mind it was a fully loaded, two on 350 CI bullet. So these were dangerous speeds). Sometime later I saw a board saying Kuntala. This time took the turn rode some 7 km passing through villages and jungles and reached the falls. Came to know it was about to close and we had 400 steps to go down to experience the magnificent fall. It was beautiful. Being a Sunday a lot of people were there to pollute the nature with plastics and other garbage. Felt bad. Clicked some photos and moved on to Nirmal, about 20kms away as Kuntala didnít have any hotels. My club had been here a few weeks before so we went to the same hotel they were, which was easy to find. It was a nice hotel with good service, food and covered parking. Mayuri Inn. Had dinner and decided to wake up early for tomorrowís ride.

    Lessons learnt on Day1:

    1. Remember the route. Itís really awkward to take out your phone every time you need to ask for direction.
    2. Buy a dedicated GPS device. Google map works in cities only.
    3. Call Roadmaster before leaving. He is always watching. Always.
    4. Keep an eye on the odo. Tank up accordingly. Athato hit reserve just before Kuntla and I had to buy petrol from a roadside shack which can be dangerous.
    5. Buy a tank bag.
    6. Buy summer gear for summers. All weather sucks in summers.
    7. Gloves go last.

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    Ready to thump

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    DGR

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    Kuntala

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    Xbhp

    Day 2-29th September 2014. Straight Road

    Nirmal>Nizamabad>Banswada>Gulbarga. Approx Distance Covered-400km
    We started around 8 am, a bit late than we had planned. The roads were mostly good, tree lined but two lane which slowed us down. We got curious looks all along the way because of our safety gear and Gujarat registration plate (The transfer is still under process to Nagpur RTO). A Gujarat registered car checked twice our plates to confirm this, hehehe, while the missus was happily clicking photos. We passed the huge Nizamsagar dam sometime around afternoon. Along the way I remember three quotes

    1. Amma!!! Kitta petrol khaati ye gaadi. (on hearing the FE of Athato)
    2. Bawaaa!!! Gujarat se aa rahe ye logaa (mistaking me for travelling all the way from Gujarat)
    3. Straight road: We asked for directions for some place (forgot the name) and the guy said turn right and you will get a straaaaight road. The emphasis on straight was cleared when we turned right. Before us there was a straight road. Ruler straight. It only had ups and downs no rights and lefts. For about god knows how many kilometres. Pheew. Whenever we reached a summit the straight view of the road till the horizon was stunning.

    Good food in southern India has never been a problem for me but the missus didnít appreciate the abundance of rice. Most eateries we tried had good food. We reached Bagalkote by 6 pm. We started looking up for hotels and finally by 7.30 pm got a decent one. We were drained by the city traffic more than the whole dayís ride. We decided to pre book from now onwards. The hotel was good with nice service and guarded parking. Had dinner and decided to wake up early for tomorrowís ride. Again.

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    Nizam Sagar Dam

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    Straight Road. Notice the gap in the end

    Day 3-30th September 2014. First Night

    Gulbarga>Jevargi>Bijapur>Bagalkote>Belgaum>Goa. Exact distance 523km

    No, I wonít be divulging the graphic details of what you think. Itís about the first night riding in the ghats. Well we were on the road by 6.30 am. The weather was nice and cool. We covered 100km before breakfast and were mighty confident to reach Goa tonight. Hence we booked a hotel online in Goa. I have removed the leg-guard from Athato and replaced it with a bar so that I can keep my feet while cruising on the highway. And during one of these relaxing stints I lost my kick. Yes, the one which starts the bike. I realised it when I put my feet back to the regular footpegs and found more than usual space. Asked the missus if she had seen anything flying off the bike and got a firm negative, so decided against going back and looking for it as the chances were slim. We had breakfast meanwhile I called Roadmaster and he was genuinely getting amused by my questions and noobness. He said try in Bijapur. Push started Athato with the help of a curious by stander. Reached Bijapur and lost about one hour searching for the kick. Got an old one for the price of new but never mind. Saw Gol Gumbad from outside only as we could not afford to lose more time. The pre booking already started to seem like a bad idea. Anyway the roads were very good and the weather was cloudy so were enjoying our ride to the fullest and were greeted with rains about 100 kms before Bijapur. We put on our rain gearand when we reached Bijapur the sun was still up. Goa seemed doable. But we somehow went inside the city and that was hell. It was not raining and we still had our rain gear on and we were perspiring as hell. We were getting the usual stares and after I think one hour we got out of the city. Our tummies were emitting weird sounds so had dosa and chatted with the restaurant owner about how to reach Goa. There were two options. One was two lane but pothole filled and heavy traffic and second was single lane good road used by cars. Chose the latter. When I asked about how long is the ghat he said there was a bit of it. Now I live in plains and for me a bit means 2-3 kms of ghat not a frigging 40 kms. We realised pretty soon that we are f****d and should have called the Roadmaster, but we decided move on. It would have been beautiful to ride in the day. The Karnataka section was painted and lined with reflectors but Goa section just had tarmac, no signs or reflectors. To top that, cars were passing by at stupid speeds and high beam on. I donít know why these idiots get license when they even donít understand the basic signals and have no fear or care for others life. A nose-dived Tata Nano into one of the side drains added to the fear. Also my leather gloves hadnít been broken in. So breaking and operating the clutch was getting difficult and adding to the discomfort. The sound of Athato was breaking the silence of that jungle and the missus hugging me got me through. Was scary and beautiful at the same time.
    When the ghat ended we felt like thatís about it. But we had to cover another 40km more to reach the hotel. Wow. Somehow we reached the hotel. It was one of the worst I had seen. It was called Don Hill Beach Resort. Bad service, worse staff, pathetic food. That sums it up. Never ever go there. Went to a nearby restaurant to have dinner and the surrounding drunkards were adding to the misery. We had an ominous start to Goa.

    Day 4-1st October 2014. Halt at Goa

    As my trip had been cancelled a few times and Athato had done 1000 km already so I had decided to get it serviced in Goa. Now the previous nightís ghat ride had taken toll on the clutch cable and changing gears was getting hard. So I tried to adjust it, went too far and broke the cable. To top it all wifey was getting edgy because of so many people drinking around her. I didnít seem to notice it till I told her to wait till I go and find a bullet mech. Anyway I started pushing the two quintal beast and found a garage. They told me to leave the bike with them till evening. In your dreams you punks. Moved on and then a goan guy stopped me who was at the garage and pointed me to the direction of a bullet mech. Good karma I guess. Thanked him. With Athato pissing out bad oil I went to find oil filter and oil but I was on Calungate beach. Stupid me thought that I will find everything at Goaís beaches. Should have gone to the city. Half day was wasted. Got Athato serviced and missus was looking in a not so good mood so to cheer her up I had a half brain idea to take her shopping. Half brained because i didnít think where the hell I will pack it. The realisation came pretty late. So now I had a backpack worth of extra stuff to carry. We went to Anjuna beach clicked some pics and then I remembered that I had to meet Paul Smith of Rag & Bones customs near Vagator beach. For those who donít know he is an English guy settled in Goa who builds mostly kickass hardtail bobbers based on enfields. His idea is basically to build bikes which look cool, have bare essentials but still fun to ride and . He fabricates or casts all the stuff he needs to build his customs. He is into old school style of working. Enjoyed a lot while talking to him. Mostly about bikes and biking culture in India and Europe. He gave me a few R&B stickers. It was already dark when we left and Google maps disappointed us once again. We found our way to the hotel and decided to leave Goa.
    Lessons learnt:

    1. Avoid servicing if you can.
    2. Keep your backpack empty if travelling with the missus.
    3. Beaches are not a good a place to buy engine oil.

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    With Paul Smithof Rag&Bones Customs

    Day 5-2nd October 2014. Touch and Goa

    Goa >Tarkarli (Malwan) Approx distance 100km

    I had previously visited Goa twice and its way cooler when you are not sober. This time it was different. So I called up Roadmaster and he told me to go to Tarkarli. We left the hotel leaving Goa unexplored. For some other time. Goa has not been kind on us from the start and it gave us a puncture as a parting gift. We had entered Maharashtra and probably were on the Sagari Mahamarg i.e. Ocean Highway which runs along the sea passing through small villages and scenic ghats. I could feel the rear tire loosing pressure and asked a villager about a puncture shop. He said you are just 2 km far. Decided to ride slowly as the roads were good. When I was just a km away I negotiated a turn and when we came out of it the tire decided to part away with rim. Athato was like a mad bull which I tried to control but was successful only in reducing the speed. Thud and we were lying on the road with our right legs under him. Some villagers ran to help. Picked us up. The missus had a cramp in the leg barring that we were unhurt. Athato had lost one mirror and some petrol. The helplessness while under him scared us a bit. I asked about the puncture shop. One guy was kind enough to go to the shop to bring the mech. But the mech asked him to bring the bike. He came back with a sorry face and told me the same. I unloaded my luggage and started to push. Now due to this the tube got pinched and tore off at multiple places. I needed a new tube now. I had a spare tube, at home, which I forgot to pack. So now I was in a village smaller than my colony in need of a 19 inch tube. The puncture guy suggested me to go for an 18 inch tube but the Good Samaritan who was helping me took me to the villageís only spare part shop. Lo and behold. He had a 19 inch tube. I forgot that I was in Maharashtra. The land in love with bullets. I had seen like 10 bullets in the past one hour contrary to the one or two daily from the last few days. Good karma I guess. I have spent about half of my life in Maharashtra and listening to Marathi I was feeling home. The fear I had because of falling had disappeared. Got the wheel fixed and went back to missus who was resting at the house in front of which we had fallen. Mounted the luggage and started towards Tarkarli. We saw a construction site. By the information boards came to know it was Sindhudurg airport site in the middle of nowhere. God knows why they were building an Airport there.
    WOW. Thatís what came out of my mouth when I saw our room. It was dead on beach. The sea was hardly 40 feet away, but the catch was that we had to leave the resort by tomorrow afternoon as it was pre booked for the long weekend and we had got the room because the Roadmaster had called a day earlier. All hail the Roadmaster. The place was called Khobrekerís beach resort. We freshened up and went to the beach. The missus was ecstatic. We went into the sea and as the beach wasnít crowded we were enjoying ourselves royally. Lost my specs to a giant wave and also my room keys. Thankfully I was carrying spare specs. Goa was now officially off the family vacation list. We came to know there was water sports facility in the backwaters but as it was late so had to do that in the morning. We slept with the soothing sound of sea. This was exactly how I had wished she should see a sea. I asked whether she was scared because of the fall and will she come again with me on a trip. She said why was I even asking such stupid questions and she will go anywhere as long as I was with her. At that moment I knew I was lying in the arms of my soul mate.
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    The view from the Tarkarli room

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    Up in the air

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    Aiyyo...

    Day 6-3rd October 2014. The Good the bad and the ugly.

    Tarkarli>to a place 40km before Ratnagiri. Approx km-Forgot to note down

    The good: The morning was awesome. We enjoyed a lot doing all the stuff they had. Came to know that there were options for scuba diving and snorkelling as well but we were short on time. The hotel owner was patient with us. We had lunch and left for Ratnagiri. We were enjoying the ghats and could see the sea and beautiful beaches at many places. We wanted to go to a beach called Madban from where we could see the Sindhudurg fort. It was off the track and a very steep grade to reach the village. The beach was spooky and beautiful but Sindhudurg fort was not in sight because of the clouds.

    The bad: It was getting dark because of the oncoming storm. When we came out of Madban and were a bit far from habitation it started raining. Out came our rain gear but we were already wet. The rain was so intense that it was getting impossible to ride. I saw a board of a petrol pump and decided to take shelter there. While talking to the staff came to know there is a hotel 5 km ahead but with bar and was shabby. Else if I go a few kms further there was a decent hotel. Decided to go for the second option. Athato was standing in the storm with luggage on which I thought was waterproof. The thunder storm was still on. The mountains lit up with every thunder bolt. Was a mesmerising view. Was enjoying and getting tensed at the same time.

    The Ugly: The rain stopped after an hour or so. We left for the said hotel, but when we reached there, he said it was full which was impossible as we couldnít see any vehicles. He was I guess suspicious of a couple travelling on a bike. Now the bad was turning ugly. It was drizzling; we were drenched and in no mood ride another 40 kms. The ugly hotel ownerís son pointed me towards a dharmshala. We went there with little hope. A family was already there who had come to visit the temple adjoining the dharmshala. Now the care taker was sceptical too but the family staying there was excited to see a couple on a bullet all the way from Gujarat (hahaha), so after verifying our ids (my wife is a lawyer and her bar council I card also helped I guess) he let us in. The room was pretty basic and when we opened our luggage it was wetter than it should be. Now I knew why riders covered their waterproof saddle bag. Thankfully I have a habit of packing in plastic bags so the damage was negligible. I took off my gloves which by now were in curved. Finally the gloves were broken in. Now the only place where we could have the food was available at the uglyís hotel. Went there and he was still reluctant to admit us finally his son said something and he let us in. We settled down and were ready for a basic thali but ugly came with the menu card. I asked what was available he said everything. Now I wanted to beat the shit out him. Controlled the anger, had dinner and went to sleep.

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    At some beach

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    At madvan beach

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    Tashann...

    Day 7-4th October 2014.

    From the place 40km before Ratnagiri to Poona. Approx km-300km

    The wifey didnít sleep properly because she found the place creepy. We woke up early and left for Ratnagiri. I gave Ugly the middle finger in my mind and thumped on. There was still a large section of western ghats which needed to be covered but we had to cut short our initial ride plan as we had to reach Nagpur early. The ride was super through the ghats till we reached the four lane towards Satar-Poona. After that it was mundane. We crossed a tunnel. The resonance of Athato was awesome while we were in there. It started raining and we were drenched again andit was getting difficult as the construction of four to six lanes was on. So we stopped at some hotel before Poona, had dinner and called it a day.
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    Day 8-5th October 2014. Horny bullet

    Poona to Aurangabad. Approx distance 260 km

    My Vega Boolean was giving me a lot of trouble. Although it was good for city ride but now my ears were paining and the inner lining had folded which had created a pressure point. It was getting unbearable. So I called up Sagar Da. He laughed when he heard I had a Boolean because he had suffered the same. He told me about a shop which would be open on Sunday. Went there got a matte black flip up which a few of my club mates already had. Missus said it was a gift from her for the beautiful time she had. Wohoo. The helmet is LS2 386. The difference was apparent. This was silent and comfortable. I could ride for hours in this. Also bought mirrors for Athato. Got out of Poona by 1 pm. Now the ride was mundane. When we were about 40 kms away from Aurangabad Athato was like when you hit reserve but I had tanked up. So I stopped and after few kicks it started. After few minutes the same thing happened but this time I accidently hit the horn and voila it surged ahead. I started having fun doing it till at one place it stopped completely. The place I stopped was a truck garage. I started looking up for the fault which I knew was some electrical issue. Checked fuse, battery all I could possibly imagine but in vain. The mech called up a motorcycle mech who started fiddling with the wire. My eyes were glued on the ammeter and I found when he pulled the wires the needle moved. So I asked him to check the sockets. We pulled out all and reinserted them. Somehow Athato woke up. I kicked and it thumped. It was dark by now and I had an unsure bike. I took the mechís number in case Athato gave me trouble again which btw didnít happen. He also called in the night for enquiring about our arrival. Nice guy. Went straight to the Roadmaster recommended hotel and had dinner at a Rajasthani restaurant. The food was really good. Bhog restaurant it was called. Slept with Nagpur 530 kms away.
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    LS2

    Day 9-6th October 2014. City of Gates.
    Exploring Aurangabad

    My dad had spent a few months in Aurangabad for some training while he was in Army and he asked me to visit a few places which were worth seeing. Same were the thoughts of Roadmaster. Also wifey was a bit tired due to riding in rains. So we decided to explore the City of Gates. First we went to Ellora caves. Visited a few of them. You need a week to cover these caves. They are really beautiful. So we left for other places we had on the list as we could not cover them in 2 hours. Enroute there were saree stores. Had to stop. She did what she had to do and we had more stuff to carry. The idea of keeping the backpack totally empty will now be my top priority before the next trip. Well she was happy that was all I cared. We went to see Bibi ka Makbra which is an imitation of Taj Mahal. Now if this is an imitation I wondered what the original would be like. Agra you are now on our list. We also visited a zoo which was near our hotel. It saddened me to see those animals in captivity with stupid idiotic nincompoops throwing stones and screaming at them just to see them frown. They were as good as dead with life sucked out of them. I pray for the day when they ban such establishments.
    Anyway we were tired because of the walking and dinner at Bhog again. Tomorrow we head home.

    Ellora caves
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    Bibi Ka Maqbara4

    Day 10-7th October 2014. Homewards.
    Aurangabad> Akola>Amaravati>NAGPUR. Approx distance 500 km

    Well we just had one thing in mind. NAGPUR. The roads were pretty decent with bad patches due to construction going on at many places. There were some twisties which we enjoyed. By afternoon Nagpur was looking unrealistic. We had late lunch at Akola. Now after few kilomteres we hit the four lane. Woohoo. I twisted the throttle to the max. We had decided to take a break at Amravati which we skipped as we didnít want to break our momentum. We reached home by 7:30pm riding non-stop for the last 4 hours covering 240km. Thatís not bad for 350cc Bullet with 50 years old technology. I had more respect and love for my bikerni now. We were finally home. My family was happy. We had ridden 2750 kms, across four states and spent an awesome time together. From tomorrow we were to live our normal (boring) life. The honeymoon was over.
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    Handlebars

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    finally learnt how to tie up luggage neatly

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    Home
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    Last edited by tripster; 10-23-2014 at 09:17 AM.
    One life to ride....

  2. #2
    Moderator B7ACKTHORN's Avatar
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    Log Approved

    Beautiful simple and spot on.

    Cheers!
    VJ
    Once upon a time, a guy asked a girl 'Will you marry me?'
    The girl said, 'NO!'


    And the guy lived happily ever after and rode motorcycles and watched sport on a big screen TV, went fishing and surfing, and played golf a lot, and drank beer and scotch and had tons of money in the bank and left the toilet seat up and farted whenever he wanted.


    THE END

  3. #3
    Rusted krishna77's Avatar
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    Very nice to read. Wishing you a very long journey together.

  4. #4
    Addicted tripster's Avatar
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    Wow. That was fast approval. I was expecting it after diwali. Thank you B7ACKTHORN for the approval and kind words.

    Thanks krishna77

    .................................................. ............
    we r all gonna die so let's get high \m/
    Last edited by tripster; 10-23-2014 at 07:36 AM.
    One life to ride....

  5. #5
    Addicted tripster's Avatar
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    There is an edit. We crossed Krishna river on 3rd day

    .................................................. ............
    we r all gonna die so let's get high \m/
    One life to ride....

  6. #6
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    Hey man....well written. Loved reading it!

  7. #7
    Keyboard Warrior chaosaddict's Avatar
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    Awesome, mesmerizing storytelling and captivating yet humorous expressions! Loved it.
    BENEATH THE REMAINS.........
    Instagram - chaosaddict666 (follow for atypical uploads on heavy metal, bikes, alcohol, chakna, life, fashion yada, yada)
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    Addicted tripster's Avatar
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    Quote Originally Posted by chaosaddict View Post
    Awesome, mesmerizing storytelling and captivating yet humorous expressions! Loved it.
    Thanx man. Glad you liked it.

    Quote Originally Posted by pacificwaters View Post
    Hey man....well written. Loved reading it!
    Thanx nikhil da

    .................................................. ............
    MOON Ride - http://www.xbhp.com/talkies/showthread.php?t=30340
    One life to ride....

  9. #9
    Rookie ratish's Avatar
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    Loved it!!! Great piece.

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    Addicted Habshan's Avatar
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    Default Re: MOON Ride

    Nice Log, laughed hard 3 times. The fall was a bit scary though.
    *ThumbsUp*

    Sent from my GT-N5100 using Tapatalk
    #Gixxer
    #Moto X on CM 12.1
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