Day 10, July 24, 2017 –Hiriyur to Devangere
Distance travelled- 114 kilometres.
Duration- 10 hours
Today Sunita heads for the district town of Devangere which has shot into the fame for being selected as one of the smart cities to be developed under Prime minister Modi’s mission. The place is also known for its windmills and is no. 1 in Asia for wind power generation and renewable energy.
Who would not enjoy the wind on the face and in the hair but for her cycling expedition it proved to be an impediment as it made pedaling more difficult and sapped more energy from her lissome self.
When one is on a solo mission like Sunita’s there’s time for you to reflect and introspect. Sunita has been thinking and sharing a lot about her childhood memories these days. She’s been reliving the fond memories of her travel around the country with her parents. Her father’s BSF duty took them to remotest border towns and she happily hopped places with them experiencing the varied cultures and flavors of India.
She spurted out a giggle when she shared with us how, much like Amir Khan of Dungal, her father too wanted her to be a wrestler. But Sunita’s heart was not in it. She found tennis more like her kind of game and joined Tennis academy to begin her journey in sports. She soon found out that there was less sport and more politics in tennis courts. She moved on to explore something more challenging. That was when she found the alluring heights of mountains beckoning her towards them. She has not looked back ever since.
Now when she’s on her own, she finds more and more people getting connected with her on the way. Whether the free spirited bikers or simple villagers from unheard of villages, people are opening their hearts to her. Wherever she goes she finds people sharing fruits, eatables and juices with her which she in turn loves to share with people who might need them . A cowherd couple and a mentally instable beggar became her mental retreat on this journey when she offered them some of her fruits. Although oblivious of her mission they gave her a toothy smile which touched her beyond words.
After 114 kms she reached her destination of the day around 1600 hrs. A group of Rajasthani Community, settled in Devangere awaited her arrival. It was overwhelming to receive their affection and hospitality. As if that was not enough, they took her to another function at 10 O’ Clock in the night to felicitate her. The day ended for her close to midnight but she was living her dream every moment.
“They say blood is thicker than water but friendship defies that rule. One can’t choose relatives but friends are those chosen few who have the direct connection with one’s heart. Friendship sees neither boundaries nor any limits but makes every moment special.”
– Message by Sunita Singh Choken