Chennai to Hampi to Delhi travel blog

Front brakes

Rear brakes

Front sprocket

Rear sprocket

March 7, 2015

I arrived last night at the hotel at 12:30PM. Same, same, nothing different.

I was happy when I arrived. I muttered my ‘thanks’ and kissed my hand, touched the gang plank, then to heart and forehead. The first time I did it was in 2004 under the veil of tears. I have always done it since. I am home. I would not have done it in 1997. Ignorant times.

The fucking taxi walla wanted 550 Rs. I gave him 500 Rs. It’s a 10 minute drive. I can get to the Delhi airport from Koral Bagh for 400 Rs. It takes 30 minutes. I was too tired to deal with it.

I have lots to write. Where to start? I want to talk about the second page of MY journal. People still don’t get it. As I see it I have three options. One, no journal. Two, talk only of what I see. Or three, continue as usual. A loved one [can’t say the name] gave me shit about some stuff I had written. I have no idea what it was nor did I ask. I was so fucking mad at that instant I vowed to not post anything. After my anger subsided I thought about only writing of what I see. I thought about it for a long time. On the fight over here I decided to continue as usual. Why? Does anyone needs to hear my feelings? I need to write my feelings but do I need to post them? No. So why do I do it? 80 – 90% of my written feelings are of how I feel day to day on the road. Sometimes work, loves, family, life o the road; basically my life experiences to date enter the pages. If, at the instant I put pen to paper I don’t seek out to discredit or harm anyone. And even if I have done so, I do so based on my feelings at THAT TIME, THAT DAY. Ask me tomorrow whether I feel the same way, I may or may not. I spend so much time alone I have to write. I have no one to talk to. I wish others could understand this. Not just those who think I have done them an injustice but everyone.

No one I know knows what it’s like to travel such distances in time alone. Why do I do this? Subjecting myself to such tortures. And it is a torture of sorts. I often think of criminals in solitary confinement. Is what I am doing a self-induced confinement? Yes. It is my choice. I do prefer it this way. I live as I see fit. Unrestricted. I have no one to answer to nor am I on any schedule. So do I torture myself? Yes. This is my payment to live the way I do. Everyone has a payment. No one lives free of charge. They may think they do but an exact true reconciliation of their lives will always indicate otherwise.

There was some very very important business I didn’t take care of before I left. A week ago I thought I would be able to take care of everything before I left. I had time. The last three days before departure I fell down. When I fall I know I am disappointing many people and the depression spirals. As the day of departure gets closer and closer and I am stumbling I can see that my personal affairs of slipping. The spiral tightens. I crawl deeper and deeper under the covers. The tension. I wish I could describe the anxiety. I hope I remember it when I get well. It becomes so fierce. The self-hate for these uncompleted tasks. These are not big tasks. Call Tyler. Call mom. Call Trevor. Call Susan. Call Annie. Call Wendy. Call Dave. Call Dan. Visit Jim. The worst is that I know that these ‘tasks’ can be completed in four hours. So why can this not be done? I don’t know. Perhaps it’s because I live so much in my head. I travel in the fuselage. So much in my head. Even when I am home. I live in my head. I know that this is a problem so why can I not put a stop to it? I have no idea. I cannot imagine what the likes of Susan or Trevor think. My biggest worry is not what they think of me but the stress I have caused them.

I didn’t sleep much last night. I was wide awake at…several times. I threw a batch because that usually make me drowsy. I wonder if woman are the same way? It really didn’t work all that well. I had success but it didn’t make me sleepy - maybe a little. I was out prowling the colony at 5:15AM. It was dark. I know when the chai walla’s start. I found one. Actually it was my regular guy – in Chennai. I sat with a row of guys on the sidewalk and had my chai. It was twilight. The mosquitos were out. It’s their time. I don’t understand Tamali so it was not so good for me. But I was looking and appeared to be engaged. I asked the guy sitting next to me for matches. He handed me a pack and I offered him a smoke. Two minutes later he was telling everyone how he got a smoke for a match. They all talked and snickered of this. I was looking at them snickering too. I may not FULLY understand Tamali but I can certainly give the impression I know a little. I pass through much of India this way.

I went back to the hotel and had the walla bring up my left luggage. This consisted of both saddle bags and a large duffle bag that we purchased before I left. All my tools, riding gear [boots, helmet, jacket, pants and gloves], guide book, atlas, photocopied maps, summer clothes and MY reading book!! Marquez’s ‘One hundred years of Solitude’. I was so happy to see this book. I did bring an abridged version of Tolstoy’s, ‘War and Peace’. I don’t know where I got this copy but it’s old. 1958. Once again I am going to introduce an old copy into the world of Kevin, aluminum saddle bags and India. I have to try and protect this book a little. It’s not Ebay condition but I want it to survive.

I wanted to start changing out the parts I had brought from Canada. Chain, sprockets and brakes. It’s best I put my boots and pants on to do this. I had my riding gear cleaned before I left last time. I had to ‘rebuild’ my riding pants [re-install the padding]. I started around 8:00AM and finished at 10:30AM. I got the sprockets, chain and rear brakes changed. It started to get too hot. Two and a half hours. If a ‘pro’ would have charged me more than an hour I would be pissed. I have never done any of this to this bike and my tool kit is very limited. I’ll do the front brakes tomorrow.

Suukyi’s sleeping bag was covered with a piece of plastic. When I left Chennai I had taped up all the little hole in her bag and bought rope to make it more secure. Someone cut the shit out of her bag to get a look at her. This is why the ‘security guard’ had to tie another piece of plastic to her. Really, what do I do? Complain? They can’t get me a new bag. I’ll tell you what I won’t do and that is give the security guy baksheesh when I leave. He’ll ask.

March 9, 2015

Two days ago I changed Suukyi’s rear brake pads, chain and both sprockets. It took too long. I think I spent three hours doing this shit. If I got charged three hours by someone to do this I would have questioned it. It was the first time I had performed the operations. Yesterday replaced the front brakes. While doing so I discovered that the rear brake line had a leak. The hose was only about 14” long. I don’t have extra hose. I have everything but. This is an easy find in India. Today’s plan was to find a length of hose, find an ATM, get a haircut and the get some Quetiapine. It’s an anti-depressant drug. I don’t know why I don’t have any. I do have it at home. I reflection I blame my barely being able to get out from under the covers the two days before I left Canada.

I started my scavenger hunt around 9:00 AM. I knew nothing would be open other than the haircut shop and the ATM. Everyone gets shaves/haircuts in the AM and the ATM’s are 24hrs.

The hair cut was simple. The shop is only 300m down the street. I got my mats cut out here before I left to Canada in January.

I knew where a Bank of India ATM was located. On my way to find a hose and Pharmacy I was suspect that I would hit this ATM first as it was close to the hotel. The ATM wasn’t working for me. The Bank of India ATM’s typically always will accept my debit card. This one didn’t. Odd as hell. Another 300m and I hit a Citi Bank ATM. These too are good for me. This one worked. I took 20,000 Rs.

The length of hose was also an easy to find. There is a moto repair shop 10m from the hotel. It was closed when I left the hotel so I carried on. Within two stops I had her hose. To bleed the brakes I am going to the moto repair shop because the smallest container of brake fluid I can buy is about 300ml. I only need 50ml at the most. They’ll treat me right.

From previous visit to Chenai I knew that there were a few hospitals in this area thus assumed Quetiapine to be an easy find. Chennai is a big city. Someone must be depressed here. However, from my experience, anti-depressant drugs are a rarity in India. But in a city the size of Chennai I knew/thought it wouldn’t be a problem. Wrong……. Wrong……. [Insert Charlie Murphy describing his ‘friendship’ with Rick James – too fucking funny]. It wasn’t super hard to fine although I had to walk several KM’s. It only took an hour or so.

More of my thoughts……………... I don’t know what to write here. I will write more of the first three days here.

I sweat. I sweat a lot. It’s like as if I was in Delhi last August when it was +40. Because of the time change I am awake at +/- 4:00 AM. It’s easy to get out and work on Suukyi at sun up. +/-6:15 AM to try to beat the heat.

I throw on my riding gear to operate. Every surgeon has an uniform depending on the patient. For me it’s boots and pants. Both were cleaned before I left. When I slid on the pants the first day it was glorious. On day two, not so much. They now are greasy. I sweat so much when I initially arrive in India.

The world’s first solar powered flight around the world begins today.

I just watched on Al Jazeera that two Australians are about to be executed in Indonesia for heroin trafficking. I heard that the Australian government is asking for clemency. Good fucking luck. I have seen the tourist cards that every foreigner has to fill out in countries that have the death penalty for such crimes. The text is in Cap’s, red and bold. Rule one: You’re an ambassador for your country – Don’t be a dick. Rule Two: You are not in Kansas anymore Toto. Rule Three. If you think your government can do anything for you if you break your hosts’ laws – you’re wrong.

I am listening to led Zepplin’s Kashmir for the album Physical Graphitti. This, perhaps may be the best song ever painted, sculpted, written. I gave Tyler my albums. His reaction was as always how I envisioned when I ‘introduced’ my Son to the real. Of course I would have never ‘introduced’ him to the real if he did not know and respect the real. My Son’s first tattoo was the Swan Song Angel over this heart. So…fucking…cool.

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