Driving is my passion. Going for long journey in car or bus or train is my favorite right from my childhood days. I remember during my 4th standard when i used to go to my Uncles house in Hosur during the summer holidays in bus i never used to sleep at night. I used to watch all the vehicles passing by.
I used to travel to chennai very often in car in the recent years. The travel would be in day. We will start at 6 AM in the morning and reach Chennai by 3-4 PM. I always used to think I should make a ride during night. But I got a chance to do a night ride in car on Nov 12.
I returned from office to home at 7 PM. Just spent 1 hour with my kid. Packed off things and started my 7 month old Indigo Manza. Since i knew all the places clearly i never had any confusion. My dad & myself are the lone travelers this time.
We started from home by 8 PM. Had to spent some time in Nagercoil town for purchasing some food items. We had to spent some more time in a Fuel Pump station to fill it up. And by 9:15 PM we are geared up for chennai.
Plugged in my 4 GB memory card in the Audio Player to play the old collection of songs by TMS, Sirkali, SPB, Janaki, Chitra, Jesudhas. I always love to hear to old songs during travel.
The road from Kanyakumari to Chennai is awesome. Initially after crossing I felt a bit that we should have travelled in day time. Its coz of a mild sleep. I had a hectic works in office and then immediately for another adventure. I was traveling in a average speed of 100-110 KMPH in Manza. Since there is a Mileage Indicator in Manza, I can able to know what mileage Im getting. So in this condition the reading says “19.3”. Its not bad. The AC was on and the speed was 100+.
We crossed many towns on the way. I used to overtake all vehicles on the way except two. One is a SRM Volvo and another one is a Parveen Travels Mercedes Benz Bus. They flew like a rocket. No signs of where it had gone. Anyways, my manza is just a 1400 CC car and it has no matching with them.
I was cruising at 100 KM speed. All of a sudden there was a sudden downpour of rain just before madurai. It was a heavy rain. I cant see anything in the front. So I had to slowdown the speed to 70 KMPH for nearly 20 kms. And then after crossing the Thirumangalam bypass the rains stopped.
In madurai there are lots of toll gates in the outer ring road. The road was good in the outer ring road. When i reached the last toll gate the time was 12 AM. oh my god, had traveled 250 KMS in 3 hours. Quite fast enough I think. My Dad was sleeping most of the time.
Drove the car in the Trichy road. The road was really awesome. We stopped for a small tea break by 1:30. I planned to take a short nap and my dad started to ride. He was bit slow. But anyways, it was ok. By 2:30 I woke up and then I made him to sleep and then I started to drive it. By that time we have crossed trichy. There were lots of toll booths in the highway. We had to buy a return ticket as we will be returning from chennai in the same day. Overtaking in the highways is so easy. Since its a one way we can overtake in the left or right. But rule says only in right. But the heavy laden lorries will be traveling most of the time in the right side and no one has the patience for them to go to the left. So we never mind it.
At one instance I was trying to overtake a speeding lorry from left. I was giving him a passing through light and all of a sudden he turned to his left. I immediately pulled to a extreme left and slowed down the car. The lorry driver also slowed down and he immediately turned to his right. Then i thought have to be careful from now on.
There was lots of places on the way and I don’t remember the time & place where I was passing though. All I remember is the drive and the songs. By 6 AM we were into the outer ring road in Chennai and by 6:30 we were in the destination at my sisters house.
Spent some time with her kids and planned to take some rest from 11 AM – 2 PM. Had a heavy lunch and then again we started to home by 3 PM.
There was a huge traffic in Porur. Seems like some over-bridge construction is going on. By 3:30 we were into the NH. Since we bought the return toll tickets, we just need to show them they let us pass. For another 1 hour untill we crossed the Ford Car Factory cant able to cross beyond the 80 KM speed mark. And then again back into action.
By 9 PM we were in Madurai. We planned to take a rest for 1 hour. We had a dinner in a highway restaurant. Food was excellent. Love to have it from there next time. My dad now started to drive the car for one hour and I planned to take some rest. He missed a road and instead he was going into Thirumangalam town. He was bit confused in the direction he was traveling. He woke me up. And then we got back to the right track. He rode for another 30 min and gave me to control over it by 10:45. There was very less number of vehicles in the Madurai – Kanyakumari road at night. So I was speeding in 110 KMPH. After crossing Tirunelveli, there was a loud sound horn from behind. I was going in the same track. And he was giving me more sound. I thought the highway police would have given it and I immediately turned the car to the left and slowed down a bit and to my shock a TATA NANO car passed by. oh my goodness, a 600 CC car overtook my 1400 CC car. After some time i over took it and by 1 AM we were in the Nagercoil town. Stopped by a road side shop to have a tea and then drove back to home by 1:45 we reached home.
It was a wonderful journey. By Almost to 28 hours we drove 1600 KMS.
The hero of the entire journey is my TATA INDIGO MANZA. I never felt any kind of tired. The riding comfort was excellent. In fact I spent months of time before zeroing down to this car. The average mileage that i got from it is 20.2 with full AC. We never switched off the AC.
Finally, one of my dream to drive at night is fulfilled.
Planning to take a drive from Chennai to Kanyakumari by mid of December and another return trip to Bangalore during the first of Feb 2011.