The first 4.5 months of this year went in coping with the kneecap dislocation and the subsequent MPFL reconstruction surgery I had to get done to fix the ligament that got ruptured. This included intensive physiotherapy for 2 months and even though I am not 100% ok yet, I am at least “kaam chalau” ok. Good enough to go out and be social again. I’ll write more about the MPFL reconstruction journey later. For now I shall talk about another journey – one from Gurgaon to Neemrana, while driving myself (yes, a big deal after surgery) and that too in a brand new car – the new Tata bolt! I got invited by Blogadda to join in on this drive that was happening on 10th May. Even though I was a bit apprehensive about my driving a long distance after surgery as well as climbing stairs – after talking to Harish from Blogadda, I was assured that there were many other drivers and it wasn’t mandatory to drive. It was as per comfort level. In fact there was a participant who didn’t know how to drive, but I digress :). As for the stairs, well some were to be climbed to get to our destination for the day, but I could skip anything else that seemed physically taxing for my knee for now. So off I set on Sunday morning, reached Galaxy hotel at the pre-decided time and was assigned to team no 1. We were to drive the petrol version (revotron) of the car first, followed by an exchange with the diesel version at a pit stop.
After an intro round and some appetisers, Mr Sethi from Tata Motors shared some of the features of the Tata bolt. They also announced a contest – the best picture of the day would win flipkart vouchers. After lunch, we got ready to leave. All the cars had an ice box that was filled with cold water, juices, lassi, lemonade and some assorted snacks. Much needed on the hot searing sunny day that was the 10th of May! They were also equipped with Samsung tabs using the “connectnext” technology, through which we were constantly in touch with “Captain Bolt” – for all practical purposes a mysterious voice that kept tabs on us, our whereabouts and our requirements 🙂 .. In reality a person of the Tata Bolt team who wasn’t a part of the cavalcade & also provided us some media to play during our long drive. All cars were RED in colour except the pilot car. Boy I love that colour! My team mates were Prasad – an angel investor amongst other things and Alok – An SEO specialist. Alok didn’t know how to drive … and then there were two :). Accompanying us was Anuja from the blogadda team. Since we were team no 1, we were the first ones to be flagged off. I decided to drive first for as long as I could drive and then hand over the car to Prasad. We first went to leisure valley grounds, where a track had been set up to test the suspension of the car. Once we were through that, we set out for Neemrana Fort Palace. The “Revotron” version has 3 modes of driving in the city – Sport (power), Eco (Mileage), City (Mix of both). We mostly drove in the city mode. Even on the highway on sports mode, the difference could not be discerned because of constant traffic jams. It felt great going for a long drive after a gap of more than 4 months. I didn’t feel the level of discomfort I had expected due to my knee and drove till the pit stop. Once there, we exchanged our car for the Diesel version and Prasad got behind the wheel. The hi-tech music system and the voice of Captain bolt kept us entertained throughout the drive. Soon we reached Neemrana. The heat was unbearable and I slowly troddled up to Jalgiri Mahal which overlooked the superlicious swimming pool! We had some refreshments and then it was time for a tour. The group went ahead while I decided to skip this part. However, I did venture out on my own and caught a glimpse of the Hawa mahal.
The place was seeped in history, and sounds of birdcalls & their echoes. Parrots and peacocks roamed around unafraid of human contact. It was strange seeing huge trees growing over by the stairs and what not. Small little peepholes in the parapets of the fort had been converted to toilets with a view! Bougainvillea creepers adorned the palace and in some parts they covered whole walls like ivy. There were tiny little manmade ponds all over the property at various heights. And a swimming pool of course. Wonder what it would have been like in ancient times.
The inviting pool on a sweltering day!
Soon the tour ended and the entire gang came back. We all had high tea and watched a folk performance. I was still uploading my instagram images from the day and making Cinemagraphs (Animated GIFs made with short video clips) when the prizes were announced. I shouldn’t have worried cos the only image I had managed to upload by then, won me the best image of the day award! 🙂 The prize was flipkart vouchers worth 4K. But the bigger surprise of the day was yet to come when Tata Motors announced the results of a blogging contest that had already happened a month or so back. And one of the bloggers – Ragini – won a brand new Tata Bolt! I am sure everyone wanted to be in her place at that moment :).
My winning image!
Eye of the tiger! @tatabolt @blogadda #boltdrives A photo posted by Twilight Fairy (@twilightfairy) on
Cinemagraph of the folk performance
Soon it was time to leave and although this was a touch and go trip, it was still worthwhile. I clicked some more images of the fort palace that were appreciated by Neemrana properties as well.
Twilight at the Neemrana fort, clicked by twilight at the Neemrana fort 😉
A photo posted by Twilight Fairy (@twilightfairy) on
— Neemrana Hotels (@Neemrana_Hotels) May 19, 2015
On the way back we had the diesel car with us throughout and since I had not driven that variant I decided to drive for as long as was comfortable. The journey back was again full of laughter, jokes, friendly jibes and of course Captain bolt’s announcements. He also conducted a quiz about the features of the car and we all won Bookmyshow vouchers. If only, we had won cars instead ;). Around halfway, I again did an exchange with Prasad and sat in the backseat. The car is comfortable and has enough leg room. We reached Galaxy hotels at 9:30 pm and after the entire gang bade farewell (which almost drowned the sound of a shaadi band) we all headed home with new experiences and friends. It was a Sunday well spent at #Boltdrives with BOLT from Tata Motors and Blogadda especially since there were prizes involved 🙂