Journey of a different kind
Kolkata: For 66-year-old Mamata Banerjee, the very attempt to drive an electric bike deserves considerable praise and admiration.
For those who drive two-wheelers, they are aware that it needs a lot of coordination of muscles and a sharp reflex even as expert riders in India give up regular biking after reaching the age of 60 years.
For a person who does not travel on a motorcycle regularly, pillion riding wearing a sari is even more difficult as there is a tendency to slide down. Banerjee sat steadily maintaining her balance and waved at people who had gathered to witness this sight.
It is difficult for a regular pillion rider travelling on Vidyasagar Setu to maintain balance because of the sharp rise when the vehicle mounts the bridge. Again, to reach the state Secretariat one has to negotiate a slope and a sharp right turn. The wind on Vidyasagar Setu is quite strong and the driver and the pillion have to face that as well.
An infrequent rider will not think of negotiating Vidyasagar Setu even in dreams. But the way Banerjee sat on the bike, enjoying the ride, it would seem as if she goes to her office on a scooter every day.
While going back home she tried her hands on the two-wheeler. Though her security personnel assisted her, it needs tremendous courage to try out such an experiment at her age.
Banerjee is a health freak. She does walking on a treadmill every day and when on tour she does brisk walking. During her tour in London and Rome one found her taking a stroll in the morning.
No doubt, this physical fitness has helped her on Thursday. She set an example for all fitness lovers across the country that if there is will, even impossible things can be achieved.