Monsoon Drive: The Detox We City Folks Desperately Need


Monsoon Drive: The Detox We City Folks Desperately Need

Illustration: Robin Chakraborty

Pakoras, chai, and long drives.

Those are the three words that come to mind when one thinks of the monsoon. The first rains bring with them freshness, cool breeze, and a lot of cheer after a torrid summer. The soil smells different but all the posts on Instagram about the soil smelling different remain the same. #Petrichor

And then comes the rush – a frantic search for umbrellas, which were tucked in some corner of the house after the last season, begins. Raincoats and windcheaters become as important as facemasks before leaving the house and every valuable item from phones to cameras is put in little plastic pouches. You have to be careful when you enter the house with wet feet and leaky sandals… or earn mum’s wrath.

The rains also trigger some cravings. Everyone loves a hot snack in the morning with a cup of tea on a drizzling and lazy Sunday. And a long drive plan makes for a perfect start to the week.

What’s a monsoon without long drives?

It’s the best of both worlds. You don’t have to deal with all the muck and bugs that terrify you about the season but still be out there on the roads, enjoying the spectacle from as close as possible. That’s the dream, isn’t it? Enjoy the rains without getting all drenched, the clothes clinging to your body.

A solo drive with music playing on the radio – I think that’s the perfect way to get some “me time”. And to daydream. For most of us, the first luxury car we aspire to buy is the Mercedes. 2020 might have begun on a glum note, but it’s never too late to change that.

A solo drive with music playing on the radio – I think that’s the perfect way to get some “me time”.

I for one have started to dream big. And that fantasy includes driving off away from the hustle and bustle of the city, amid the hills with no network and no work calls. In my dream car. Someday, I hope I’ll be taking off in my slick Merc. I even visited the Mercedes online store and read up all about that special car. A test drive might not be a bad idea, they even have all the safety protocols in place.

I imagine some quiet time, listening to blissful music on the way, enjoying a comfortable ride through the ghats. Surrounded by greenery and a light drizzle, one can even park the car by the side of the road and be one with nature. Maybe even capture a mesmerising still to make your Instagram followers a little envious. The journey is as enjoyable as the destination, if not more, on a monsoon drive. It is the perfect detox for us city-slickers.

Integral to a monsoon drive is garma garam food. A long drive also demands making pit-stops at “famous” eateries on the way, because overcast weather and hot snacks go hand in hand. If you are the kind who is wary to eat street food, you can pack breakfast from home, stop near a gushing waterfall and have a picnic of your own. Of course, with some Pink Floyd playing in the background.

On the way back, pack some chikki and fudge for friends and family. A rainy day without good food is like going to Agra and not seeing the Taj Mahal. It feels like a terrible waste.

The coronavirus-induced lockdown may have restricted movement but it’s not long before we rekindle our love for the rains with that beloved long drive. A rainy day, with a hot cup of tea and a blissfully comfortable ride in a Mercedes. It doesn’t get any better.

To get started on your much-awaited road trip, click here.