On Cycling-9

3 min readFeb 5, 2023

I did not anticipate that there would be no breakfast on day one of the Cycle Yatra-1, originating from Chennai Marina beach on the death anniversary of the Father of the Nation.

Quarter to seven, we began pedaling, braving the leaky sky following an excellent send-off with a ribbon cutting and flag-off by the best brains in the logistics and supply chain vertical. It had to be quarter seven or any time before half past seven to beat Rahu kalam, which the Hindu almanac prophesizes bad time between 7.30 and 9 in the morning on Mondays. Yes, for 90 minutes uninterrupted. Conservative south Indians?

Algor Supply Chain Solutions owner fortyish Virendar Chaudhary and self (cool 66 years, if you are curious about my age!) rode navigating through the Monday morning traffic on the Marina beach road via Santhome, Adyar. Our escort or support reefer vehicle — an Isuzu at that — with Syed Kausar Hussain and driver Somu sometimes followed us or piloted some time. We had no issues.

The skies opened up heavily, nearing the Raj Bhavan, compelling us to shelter at a tea shop. We passed the time drinking a hot cuppa chai.

The traffic was getting heavy, with office-goers and college students competing for road space to reach their destinations in time. Many moved in the wrong direction, unmindful of traffic rules. No policemen in sight added to the chaos.

I rode a 7-gear cycle, and Chaudhry was on a non-gear one. Naturally, our riding speed was different, thus adding the gap between us. Near Chromepet, I halted along with the escort vehicle and chatted up with the crew of an Emergency ambulance vehicle driver and a paramedic. Soon, Chaudhry came huffing and puffing due to the inappropriate seat height of his cycle.

When we crossed Tambaram Sanatorium, we agreed that our breakfast halt would be soon after crossing Tambaram. Maybe two kilometers. Preferably at a decent restaurant. Hunger pangs began building up.

Just a few more minutes before the belly gets something to “mull” over, I told myself.

Chaudhry and I were not together on the road. It was impossible to ride side by side on the busy highway. So, we were one after the other. Plus the varying speed of our cycles.

There was no sign of any decent restaurant so far.

Meanwhile, I lost sight of our escort vehicle. Equally, I should have checked on the whereabouts of Chaudry, whom I believed to be behind me on the road somewhere.

Soon, a fork in the road appeared: The signboard advised riders to take the Maduravayal bypass for Bangalore or go straight for Trichi.

As we were Bangalore-bound, I quickly took the bypass and continued riding, unaware that the escort vehicle and Chaudry took the Trichi route. They decided to take the Walajabad-Kanjeevaram route to join the Golden Quadrilateral. On the other hand, I took the Maduravayal bypass and hit the same Golden Quadrilateral after passing the Vanagaram toll plaza. Lack of communication amongst us.

That’s where my nightmare began.

(To be continued)




An avid watcher & practitioner in the world of communication