Ironically, the Test was outside of the Chinnaswamy stadium where Champions League T20 match was about to be played. Ridiculously overconfident, I thought there would be few takers for this tournament-opener, and Parking my bike at the venue would be a walk in the Park. Alas, it was not to be. Or rather, I was to pick the most difficult-to-park area of the field.
By the time we reached there, there must have been almost five hundred bikes parked all over the place in most creative configurations. Latest rains had given rise to weed (both with and without thorns) posing additional challenges ( in other words, bonus points were up for grabs). There was no entrance to the parking lot. All I could see was people rushing to somehow get their bikes first on the sidewalk (involved 8 inches of steep step) and then up a small climb of about one meter into the parking lot. And then somehow hope to find some place for the bike to rest before it was taken through another ordeal of coming out of the lot.
I wish I had a bike that turned into a bicycle whenever I wished. To lift 110Kg bike with ten gentlemen trying to hurry you is not easy. Worse so, when you are anxious to get into the stadium. I tried using the powerful engine's thrust to get over the step. It wouldn't work. Then I tried to get hold of the knee guard and lift the bike over the step. It couldn't work: for it was against first principles of physics. Lastly, I got down from the bike, somehow held the bike handle and one side of the knee guard and hoped it would move quickly over the edge. Miracle or whatever, this worked. But I had no time to rest and enjoy this small success. The next challenge was to get the rear wheel over. This was no-brainer, as I had done this maneuver many times before. Climbing back on the seat, I simply pulled the bike through!
Well begun is half done, they say. It's only half-true. After pushing along for a few feet, I was already surrendering to the thought that I had made a big mistake in riding to the stadium on bike. It seemed like everyone (including the players and their agents) in the stadium had ridden on their bike to the match. I could sense an expression of hard fought victory on the faces of those who had (somehow) parked their bikes and were coming out. 'Don't go any further, there is no place' was a continuous advice I was subject to.
I could not go back a loser. (Especially since my wife was watching me.)
I decided to press on. Invoked the God of Bikes and somehow, only somehow grabbed a tiny gap between two scooters. Without respecting the thorns or broken twigs of a nondescript ivy (whatever!) I got down, locked the bike and shouted, "I am done!"
All through the game (which the Cobra's won in the end) my mind was kept under certain uncomfortable effect induced when you think your possession is not safe. Two overs before the game ended, we decided to get out and see if we would have any luck in getting the bike out of the jungle.
I was prepared to stay on till first Sun rays were out.
Luck, however, had different plans. Or rather, I had strong will (which explained the Way). I couldn't believe my eyes that there was a one-foot opening that could take me all the way to the exit.
Joy filled the air. All of a sudden, music started in full blast. There were fireworks in the sky, and people cheered (which only later I found out, was not for me, but for the fifth wicket RCB managed to take!).
I had passed the Parking Test with flying colors. Critics may boo 'what about un-Parking?' But I think I won't take that test anytime till the next year!