July 3, 2020

Gaurav Siddharth cracking the solo ride in the country and on his mum

This time we have a story that is going to make you a little prepared in case your growing child or the young adult at home talks of going on travel that has an unconventional path. Read on to meet an inspiring travel journey and life experiences that has changed someone and he is on the ride that surely can inspire or amuse many others.

Meet Gaurav Siddharth a young promising individual from Lucknow, India who broke the Guinness World Record for the longest motorcycle journey in a single country in Bangalore a few days ago. He is still continuing his journey and meeting several interesting people, celebrities and garnering rich experiences that most of us might fail to observe or imbibe from the country in our life time.

It was interesting for Mums and stories to reach out to him as he spoke quite affectionately on his mum in an interview and how she has encouraged him and recited prayers over phone through this journey.

“I am 23 now but since I was 10, I was a curious soul and a happy little traveller wanting to see the world. I don’t call myself a biker, not a wanderer, just a little traveler who’s eager to see things never seen; taste experiences never had before and thereby learn a lot from these tales.

I’ve always wanted to tread on a path different from what people do. I believe if I do something different, the results would be different as well. So this has been a path perhaps for the quest for these unknown results and leanings.

I decided to take on this long journey of 1.2 lakh kms which roughly equated to three times the earth’s circumference. For this reason, you may call Columbus as my inspiration. 😉

Gaurav final final

I am taking alongside the message of ‘Swadeshi’ where in I am using all the indigenous products like GPS, mobile, biking gears, camera, helmet, daily cosmetics, food items, the bike itself and everything overall that is of India. This is to bring forth the availability, cost effective and durable nature of Indian made goods.

During the journey, I’ve had several inspiring, interesting and literally out of the world encounters. From Swami Ramdev riding the motorcycle with me as a pillion to looking into the eyes of a lioness just 50 metres away when I accidentally ventured into the Gir Forest in Gujarat;  I have seen places in Chhattisgarh where live bears are worshipped to seen a prostitute owned village in Rajasthan.

Also a village, just 200 kms away from this destination is a place, where on birth of a girl child, people plant 111 trees out of joy. I’ve witnessed the variety in Indian culture. In West Bengal, I was called home, served the best food, was provided fresh clothes to wear when I was all wet without my stuff by a Muslim family who kept on asking me if I was uncomfortable staying with them!

The love and care I got from them or at Fatehpur Sahib at the Gurudwara and the concern showed to me at a Christian ministry or at other places I can say these are memorable.

In a way, I believe all religions have lost their essence to me. I have started seeing people as humans, than someone chained to specific lines of communities. This I believe is essential to everyone’s growth as a person.

I’ve completed honors in psychology from Lucknow University. I have been working as a freelance user interface designer since last 2 years which helped me collect some funds for the journey.

Parents don’t see this from a journey or travel point of view. They see it as a risk from a safety point of view. Once you convince them from that angle, I think they’re fine with everything. Besides, I earlier did a cross country cycling of 4750 kms from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, so I could pretty much assure them about my safety convincingly.

Honestly my mom always had apprehensions. She still has them now. Every once a week she has nightmares and bad dreams. She calls me up and we take a read of ‘Hanuman Chalisa’ together on phone 😉

Interestingly, celebrities have been approachable and consider me worthy of meeting them and hence we meet. A lot goes behind the scenes, approaching them, sitting outside the venue of their next appearance before a night and countless emails, letters and faxes convincing them about my agenda and that I’m completely apolitical talking that way.

People I’ve met on this journey are as follows: Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mother Smt Heeraben Modi, Mr Pankaj Modi, Swami Ramdev, Sri Sri Ravishankar, Shri Anna Hazare, Mr Narayan Murthy from Infosys, Mr. Sourav Ganguly, Dr. Kiran Bedi, , Ms Irom Sharmila (Iron Lady from Manipur) among others.

Travel and adventure is all about fun. I feel like a traveller when I go off the mainland in some remote area where even mobile signals struggle hard to make their presence felt. Some enjoy the same thrill in climbing and scaling high mountain peaks. For others travel might mean just staying out with friends away from home for a night. As many the number of faces, so are the forms of travel. Ascribing to someone else’s interest is not good. Whatever you love, whatever you feel thrilled about, just go on doing that. Its a very relative term, to each one his own.

I’d suggest people to definitely visit a few ideal villages and NGO’s which includes Lok Biradri Prakalp in Gadchiroli, Maharashtra, Ralegan Sidhdhi (Anna Hazaare’s village), Parshuram Kund (Arunachal Pradesh) and Pathmeda, Rajasthan (largest cow shelter). All these places have  dedicated workers and one can enjoy free/very reasonable stay and food as well.”

When questioned on his future plans, Gaurav shares excitedly, “ THIS IS THE FUTURE! Wherever I go day after tomorrow is future, whatever I do next hour is my future. And I’ve vowed to make my future awesome moment by moment. Why do you expect me to get worried by thinking what I would do or what will happen after 10-20 years?

Whenever I am out, people first ask me what am I doing? Then the very second question is how have my parents allowed me to do something like this. They are not surprised with what I’m onto, but by the fact that my parents have no issues with what I’m doing. What do you think this means? Everyone trusts my capabilities, but cannot digest parent’s willingness to let me loose on this mission.

I think parents need to think about this too. Most times, what children are capable of keeps hidden and covered by shackles of probability, hesitation, lack of confidence etc.

Let your kids loose, they might go astray, too much of a chance, but then they can always have this freedom at a later point someday. We’re currently seeing PV Sindhu back with a silver. This might ring bells for parents with a daughter. Let them do whatever they wish to. A little constraint is needed though, I agree. But most of the time, this constraint becomes a chain, from which children are never able to come out.

I was never skeptical, I am not skeptical, nor will I ever be. I have to pull this off no matter what and I’ll do anything that it takes for me to do this.

Gaurav2

My mom is a learner. Just like me, or you can say I’m just like her. She’ll try to learn from every bit possible. She is always open to new things. I believe another reason for allowing me on this journey would be because she could get to know so much more via me. She has recently learnt what’s app, a little bit of browsing, typing in Hindi/English, checking you tube and sending smiley’s.

She loves it and more than that, I love it. It feels good when you can teach something back to the person who taught you everything from walking, talking to taking care of yourself on world’s longest journey on a bike.”

Did you just mutter ‘Awesome’? We couldn’t have agreed more.

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