I recently got back in touch with an ex-student of mine. Nicolitta, a teenager then, was gifted with facile technique, her performance bolstered by many years of practice and attention to detail while studying advanced works by the likes of Bach and Bartok. I recall visiting her leafy cottage in Bandra, and after a piano session over the obligatory cup of tea and snacks, watched her kickstart an old Bullet motorbike and take a cautious ride in the crowded, narrow winding lanes outside her house. That was the first time I glimpsed the hidden spitfire in her. In time, we parted. I moved to Canada, she went on to use her seamstress skills designing bridal wear and garments for export.
A passion is however hard to kill – Nicolitta is now a seasoned dirt bike rider, having come to terms with high altitude sickness, bike breakdowns and the fact that she can be regarded as somewhat of an unusual spectacle in rural male-dominated India. She has undertaken extensive trips to remote places and has shot some breathtaking stills on the way. Her latest adventure released on DVD with four other fellow bikers of the motorcyle club ’60kph’ was filmed by Gaurav Jain of Dirt Track Productions – a solo effort with no tech crew or support across a route that no GPS or map has recorded. I recently watched this award winning documentary – a beautiful film with geographical chapters unfolding a spectacular journey, sometimes raw, but always real. This is not your typical ‘bike tour’ with luggage being towed by an alternate form of transport and a Comfort Inn at day’s end. I can’t help but be proud of Nicolitta for chasing the dream against all odds to realize her passion. Here’s a trailer from the DVD:
The DVD was shipped to me in excellent tamper-proof wrapping and can be purchased here.