Motorbike trip to Nainital, India

December 9, 2002

Weather: high of about 75ºF and clear except for the bus exhaust

From Jilling Estate, we borrow a 250cc Yezdi from Jilling Estate owner Steve Lall and ride down to Kathgodam and from there we traverse steep mountains up to Nainital to cruise around the lake.  We get a glimpse of India at 40 kilometers per hour, since traffic or road conditions rarely let us go any faster than that. This is a trial run for a hair-brained idea that we have: buying an Indian Royal Enfield (fondly known as Royal Oilfield) motorcycle and touring India by road.

Indian roads are a traffic free-for-all. This time, we are only forced off the road once and luckily, there happened to be a shoulder to retreat to. This is our first stop to rest our weary backsides.
The views are magnificent and I'm a bit peeved that Julie gets to look at them while I have to concentrate on the bloody traffic.
We arrive at the lake (a resort for honeymooners) but don't have time to pick up a samosa because we want to be sure to get home before dark.
Our hineys are not in shape for such rigorous fun, as Ryan's expression indicates. We dodge wedding caravans and public demonstrations as we putter through town. 
The bike is fairly comfy and smooth, but the brakes and shifting take a little getting used to.  The main difference is that shifting is in the reverse direction from my old Honda.  Upshifting on this bike means pushing the foot lever down.

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