The End is Just the Beginning…
Everyone would like to think like this. It is the part of human psyche, a hope for something better on the horizon which allows us to perform even better, challenge ourselves even more.
Mission Red Planet was started off with a single line uttered in the month of January in New Delhi at the Auto Expo. A concept which seemed too big, too grand. From then till the start of the ride were five long months. In those months lots of things happened, ups and downs, the usual. But the trip did start. And within a blink of an eye it was over! Today, as I write these words I can understand what our elders mean when they say ‘You will not realize where all those years went by’. I can identify with that. Because in the last 35 days, I have been doing an average of 380 kms (25 riding days) in Dubai, Turkey, Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia, Austria and Italy (in this order) to reach the World Ducati Week on 22nd June at the Misano Circuit in Italy after 9750 odd kms.
And I remember the first day in Dubai as if it was yesterday. It is surreal, you cannot stop time. You just cannot.
As I realize this reality, I am even more convinced in what I do, capture my experiences in photos in the best way possible at that moment. The world is my studio, the sun is my flashlight, and a motorcycle takes me around this studio, thus making it effectively my own extension.
I have also been updating blogs on the go. Riding for an average of 8 hours a day, and then working on the Lenovo for 4 odd hours to get the updates to all of you. On an average each blog had 30 photos, and that’s quite a lot! In fact 15 such blogs have been posted by me since the trip commenced. This sprinkled with an average of 4 daily Facebook updates, and you get an almost ‘live’ feel of it! Amazing what technology can do.
Talking technology. It has allowed me to make friends in all the countries that I went through and established a constant connection with them. I have been thinking what a supposedly ‘inanimate thing’ like a motorcycle can do. And more so when it is a Ducati.
I was overwhelmed to see the bond that all the Ducatisti share around the world. They were ready to welcome me in their cities and take me around, sit down with me to help me make the best routes, advice me and in general be there like a family member. Quite surreal. One moment you don’t even know what language he will speak and in the next he is inviting you over to his home for a coffee.
And all because of that motor between two wheels stamped with red badge.
On 22nd June I entered the World Ducati Week at the Misano Circuit and it blew me away. The WDW welcomed me with open arms and appreciated what I had done in my short journey so far.
I would like to thank Ducati and the people who had worked to make this a reality. For obvious reasons I would not like to take their names publicly but I want them to know that now I understand much better why Ducati commands so much loyalty, passion and fervor from owners and dreamers alike.
I would like to end this ‘last blog from the road’ by remembering what someone said to me on the last night of the WDW – “You are now a part of us Sunny, you part of the Ducati family…”
Yes that is true. Until I stop riding. That is true.
Ti amo Ducati.
A lot of things are still left to be done, I will mention them here so that everyone who was following can expect them in the near future:
- The remaining blogs. I will be posting around ten more blogs in the next 2 weeks or so from the Mission Red Planet. You can read the previous blogs here.
- A video documentary. Out of the plethora of video footage that I have collected, a 30 minutes documentary looks as a possibility. Again this should be done by first week of August.
- The xBhp Magazine August issue will be a Ducati special if everything goes well.
- WDW coverage.
You can also see some of the selected photos from the Mission Red Planet on this page.
It would be a good idea to subscribe to my page on Facebook so that you can stay updated on my other Ducati tours.