A drive that changed our lives – Recalling Times Women’s Drive on International Women’s Day!
Recalling Times Women’s Drive on International Women’s Day!
Wohh, the day seems like mass birthdays being celebrated all over, wishes and love in abundance pouring from all over, I sneer at these “one day celebrations” that start trending for a day and the very next day love and everything related fizzle, but today was different – reached office at 7.50 to be welcomed by a rose bud and chocolate implanted in front of the pc with a personalised pic collage and when our 65+ guard saab wished me a Happy Women’s Day I was beaming! Although I was certain he would have but I ended up asking him if he had wished his wivey and daughter who works at Syntel. By mid morning office was buzzing with lunch planning and photo sessions, looked like a packed day ahead. A lunch with colleagues, coffee with closies, Holi preps in the society and Exaaaaam month. Just then a message popped by a inner circle dost who knows minutest details of my life, “Awaiting TravoMance’s post today, the Sankrant and Valentines Day posts make me want more”. The last month has been extremely fulfilling, professionally and this passion took a bit of a hit but my dearest friend’s message made me want to stash everything else away and write. In fact she even recommended the subject, I thanked God a zillion times for these women in my life who only believe in pulling each other up and enjoy while you achieve your dreams!
Coincidentally have been constanly thinking of last year’s experience on Women’s Day that coincided with my bestie’s birthday. Times Women’s Drive or TWD, a breast cancer awareness rally from Bangalore Mumbai and Pune to Goa. Sounds Vanilla? Well far from it cause it wasn’t merely a 500 kms drive that we otherwise zoom and reach in 9 hours.
The Run Up to the Event
The process began a month before where 100 participants were selected from Pune based on voting and we had finished 18th, post qualifiers the month entailed rigorous process of registrations with IARC (Indian Automotive Racing Club), that hosts rallies on the tricky TSD format, enrolled as Driver & Navigator Duo, me taking the easier role and entrusting Bhanu with the navigation calculations, the third role of the social media correspondent was to be managed remotely. From sitting up late to understand the TSD format involving cryptic calculations of Time Speed and Distance based on Tulip charts to driving till NDA Pune, to calibrate the car’s odometer. From designing tees to planning up the car decor, to taking multiple test drives trying to understand the signs and calculations. TSD and Tulip were such a slap on the user friendly GPS, for those of you who are new to these like we were, TSD charts are Time Speed Distance charts, used to calculate the time required to reach a destination or the speed at which one must drive, basically everything that makes ones job difficult coupled with directional signs through Tulip Charts, where one miss and we landed up in the midst of paddy fields.
A year since this mega event of our lives, we don’t discuss it often but we feel the difference it has made to our lives. Family, Friends and colleagues made us feel like soldiers going on a war, it was a war against breast cancer and we were doing our bit – speaking to women from villages to curious passer bys, the event spiraled up our taking challenges in our stride and moving out of comfort zones streak. We obviously didn’t win, oh wait we did, won an award for being most active on social media towards creating awareness, won an experience, a life altering one and I won a friend for life, if you can go on a rally together without killing one another you shall survive all ! Said the IARC guy at flag off 😉 And he was spot on, on his prediction!
“If we must celebrate a day for women, let us celebrate freedom from stereotypes, from expectations, from idolisation, from sacrifices! Let her be imperfect, whimsical, irresponsible, boorish, lazy, fierce, opinionated, loud, flabby, unkempt, adventurous, unpredictable, unprepared, impractical ….”