Memories from the Full of Rains Nainital Trip in 2011

After writing about my recent 600+ kms self drive trip to Manali and the first hill drive of mine, I felt it would be gross injustice if don’t write down my experiences from the most beautiful journey of mine on hills even though I wasn’t on the driving seat back then. Today I feel I should have written about my Nainital visit, which left a spark in me to come back to hills by self vehicle again and again. But its never late to correct the mistakes. This article would try to revisit those memories and beautiful weather of that time…

Its often been said that “The plans for best journeys often happen to be impromptu than being long on preparation side”. Something like the same was the case with the Nainital visit. Before that particular journey, only public transport been the enabler for us for journey as bike was never suitable for longer distances considering law & order situations in India. But this time, as sister-in-law had a car and was living in Gurgaon (40kms away), a plan for a short trip on biggest holiday for professional class (mid of august when one festival gets clubbed with weekend & Independence day) in recent years was hatched between two sisters. Despite of plans, it kept on being flip-flopped till last day and when we left from Faridabad that particular day, then we didn’t even had bookings of any hotel in Nainital or around.

Nowadays, when I start for a long journey, then I make a point of leaving the house as early morning as possible, but as I said, that particular journey was against any rulebook. Sister-In-law arrived at our place by some 0730 hrs and despite of all efforts, we were on course of journey (after getting tank & tires filled) by 0845 hrs only, completely unaware of what awaits ahead on roads….

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As I didn’t knew driving then, so the burden was all over poor Pankaj and it would have taken a lot of toll to just come out of city on a day when almost entire city was looking like going for the route on vacation. We took the first break at an unknown place to wash our faces etc by 1045 hrs and covering even first 100kms had taken more than 4 hrs and a gigantic jam greeted us over Garmukteshwar due to narrow bridge which was catering both side traffic coming towards it from 4 lanes highway.

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My First Hill Ride from Delhi to Dehradun and Mussorie

Last travelogue of mine was about the longest trip of mine in which I referred about the first hill drive of mine which was Dehradun-Mussorie from Faridabad, I guess I should detail that trip as well for Readers.

Till that time, I haven’t had any experience of hill driving even when I wanted to, having my first long car journey memories from Nainital 2011 with sister-in-law family. I had to choose that which place would be safer to drive on hills and would be within roughly 300 km radius from Delhi/ NCR. I zeroed in for Dehradun – Mussorie, not because of any blogs or recommendations but only because of the fact that I had an office branch in Dehradun. The initial plan was to drive up to Dehradun, till where it was supposed to be driving in plains and then to decide from there for Mussorie, if was doable.

But all of that was a plan, what if I face any trouble en-route? I got that covered with two of the friends who got along with me (though none of them knew how to drive but even then its better to have helping hands in case you need one). The date chosen was around our wedding anniversary which was January 26 and the period when we travelled was January 25-27, 2014.

When you make a plan for any trip, especially when its first of its kind then its hard to wait for the moment and same was for me. After counting of days, finally the day had come and learned from earlier mistakes, this time, I took a fine sleep before rising up early. I along with wife and kiddo, who was just one and half years old left the house in Faridabad by 0430 hrs though waiting for other two participants made us a little back on the schedule but I guess we were ready to move out of Delhi by some 0530 hrs or so.

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Early morning helps you to cut through from the city traffic but looks like it wasn’t enough with that particular route with so many trucks in the way, but still we managed to reach till Muffarnagar by 0745 hrs and first stop was Vaishali Vaishno Punjabi Dhaba. That would be a distance of some 130 kms in roughly 2 hrs & 15 mins, which must be called an achievement considering the kind of foggy weather, I was to face in the way. We must have spent roughly 15-20 mins there for tea etc and then drove ahead.

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Gionee Elife S5.5-The Final part of review-Is the software part same impressive?

1. Gionee Elife S5.5 – Time to move beyond biases and stereotypes

When you are reviewing an entirely new product about which you never knew anything before, nor you would have reviewed any sister product of it to understand part of things, then it becomes absolute necessary to give it undivided attention and comparatively longer period of use to understand the bottlenecks & possible issues that may start nagging over time. Because such issues can never been checked during two three weeks period as product remains comparatively new.

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I should thank Gionee on this part that they allowed me to retain the unit for a longer while to understand it and to put it in real world use (I kind of forgotten that it’s a review unit and sure gonna miss it hard as it became part of life).

I remember the time when I was to review a keypad phone while my own phones been all touch phones. During entire period of review, I restricted myself to use the touch phone to feel the essence of living with that particular keypad phone. Same was the right thing to do when it was about an entirely new brand.

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So how did Gionee Elife S5.5, which is sure a marvel on hardware front and head turner wherever I go, fared on software front? Did it performed at par with iPhone 5S or Nexus 4 which I had? Does it produce images worthy of 13MP camera? Does the battery sails through day? Does the glassy build survives in long run?

A number of questions which I intend to answer in the rest part of blog….

Continue reading “Gionee Elife S5.5-The Final part of review-Is the software part same impressive?”

A trip from Delhi to Manali

Brother in Paris, one Sister-In-Law in Disney Land Miami with family and another been to Goa recently, Parents in Haridwar Camp, one colleague going to Srinagar… it looked like almost everyone around was roaming one place or another during the summer except me sitting back and planning for the longest self driving trip of mine till date, from Delhi to Manali (roughly 600 km one side).

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Thing with we tech savvy people is, we overload ourselves with information on the routes, places etc months, weeks before the actual date comes and I wasn’t different either. It was just two years before, when I started learning to drive the car for the first time and bought one for self.

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You can imagine that how big leap forward it was within two years that once a hesitant learning driver now tempting to drive on one of the toughest route leading to Rohtang (though that didn’t happen at the end as I got the cab on reasonable fares & decided not to take any risk). But it wasn’t sudden but gradual step by step evolvement by driving roughly 70 km/ day in this while.

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After nine months of buying the car, the first big journey of mine was to Jaipur from Delhi at around March 29, 2013 and then next big journey was to Vrindavan by November 30, 2013 covering Taj Expressway at peak speed. Then the main confidence building journey was drive to Dehradun-Mussorie-Kempty Falls by January 26, 2014. In short, I was prepared.

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