I looked into her sad eyes and my heart broke. Whoever said that men shouldn’t cry, should be horsewhipped! As if men don’t have emotions! I cried.

It was one of those tragic love stories, which are doomed before they are conceived. We were together for 11 years, eight of which were a pure bliss, gradually disintegrating into a nightmarish oblivion.

I first saw her in 2004 but did not care much about her. It was not exactly love at first sight. I thought that she’s too small in stature for me. As it turned out, it was too hasty a judgement. As I knew her better, I started falling in love with her. It was impossible not to! She was everything a guy can desire! I was married then. My wife knew that I like her, but even she didn’t understand the passion initially. When she did, she started despising her as I spent most of my day with her. Skylarking and daydreaming. Even my friends looked at me askance about this infatuation, but I was beyond caring. I had given my heart and was madly in love with her.

It was a whirlwind affair. Usually, it’s the guy who seduces. This was different. I was seduced by her. I just couldn’t stop thinking about her. It wasn’t the first time I had fallen in love. But, like wine, the strength of love can be judged by its effect upon your memory of previous experiences. The more potent they are, the easier they make you forget the past bouts. She made the memories of my past trysts vanish from my heart and mind like petroleum vapor. We were literally inseparable.

I’m basically a very lazy guy and cannot call myself a traveler by a long chalk. All my life I have lived in Bombay but hadn’t seen much of the city. She ensured that I become a walking encyclopedia of the city. We visited all the places together. We visited Bandra Bandstand and scoffed and taunted the couples sitting there, we whooped around the Marine Drive during monsoon with the crazy waves of the arrogant ocean ignoring it’s man made boundaries and drenching us playfully while we sped through the mini tsunami. We climbed to the top of Kanheri Caves at Borivali National Park and became one with the long forgotten 2nd Century BC Buddhist monks, who carved the bowels of those impregnable mountains in a religious ferver. We explored the parts of Bombay, which I had just read but never visited. She initiated a paradigm shift in me and made me appreciate the beauty of nature. She taught me to commune with nature. I still wistfully remember those long and beautiful nights, riding together on the streets of the city I love, which never sleeps. Hell! We even got arrested for speeding. She was always with me and always brought out my naughty and childish persona.

I moved to Panvel in 2008. We were separated for a short time. I was restless and missed her terribly. Even she couldn’t live without me and soon moved to the same complex, where I lived. We thought that the romance will never end when she suddenly developed some serious ailment and started getting tired after little exertions. I got her checked out by experts in the field, but they were helpless to diagnose. All they could find was, that it had something to do with her heart. It was the end of 2012.

I just couldn’t bear to look at her helpless frame! During 2013, it was difficult for her to move or be mobile for a long time. Unlike me, she was an avid traveler. It was heart wrenching to bid her to rest when she was raring to go somewhere far away. In 2014, she was completely immobile. My heart went out to her! It’s the worst feeling in the world to watch helplessly, while someone you love is dying.

Finally, this year in June, the dreaded day arrived, when I had to admit that I will have to part finally with her. I kept a brave face, but my soul was howling inside. I couldn’t meet her sad and resigned eyes, while she was being carried away to her final destination. Her last journey with a sad culmination. I knew that I may not find such love again! I broke down and cried. My five years old daughter couldn’t understand why her father is crying over an old and rusted bike!

How could I explain the little darling that only a biker can love his mount with a ferver that a lady can be envious of!