A Sunday in Delhi NCR is normally lethargic as compared to the weekdays. It is altogether the opposite of the weekdays if you compare the day routine unless you have a solidly willed plan for the Sunday and you have convinced yourself to adhere to it. Otherwise it is late than usual go-to-bed as you are well aware that the alarm too is on rest, the next morning as you and would not like to be disturbed before 10am. But that was not possible on the second Sunday of this month, courtesy Blogadda and Tata Bolt. The call itself was so exciting that one could easily afford to call off the relaxing Sunday offers and without daring to say “Nay” for it, it was a straightaway go-go from my end.
The schedule was to reach at the starting point (that was the closing point too) which was Godfather Lounge (and it was apparently made to appear with some picturesque wall-frame pictures from the movie). Well, the Godfather Lounge is in Galaxy Hotel in Gurgaon Sector 15, Part II. It is right next to the 32nd Milestone and its strategic branding makes it visible right from the highway. So while coming from Delhi, on NH-8, you would get to know where not to carry on the highway, take an exit from highway, take a U-turn and take left from 32nd Milestone to reach to the destination. The event was to enjoy the new Tata Bolt from Gurgaon to Neemrana. Gurgaon is a major business hub of Delhi NCR and Neemrana is a place that is around a little below hundred kilometres. Neemrana is actually the beginning of Rajasthan and it is on Rajasthan-Haryana border on National Highway 8. Neemrana is surrounded by Aravali hills. We were planned to stay at Neemrana Fort-Palace Hotel, 122nd Milestone, Delhi-Jaipur Highway, Alwar.
Before I further talk about our short stay experience at Neemrana Fort let us share some moments spent in Godfather lounge, Galaxy Hotel before we started for Neemrana. We had to reach at Galaxy by 11.30 am. I followed Japanese technique that day – JIT – just in time. Had I known that I will have bigger chances of winning big if I come late, I would have reached an hour or two late J. A welcoming smile from Anuja and Harish was good enough to cool down the soaring temperature of Gurgaon’s summer noon. The arrangements for snacks first and lunch soon after, in the Godfather lounge were there. We had snacks, chats and interactions among bloggers, Blogadda and Tata representatives. This bifurcation soon vanished and after a while we were a team of around thirty persons, out on a mission to experience Bolt drive of around hundred kilometres. Fifteen bloggers, five Bolts for bloggers – three bloggers in each Bolt. Each Bolt had fourth accompaniment as Bolt Guide and Expert. My team included Judy, whom I met for the first time and Ragini, whom I met many times before. Team introductions, informal interactions, there was a formal introduction of Inderpreet, the product manager of Tata Bolt who told us about the unique features of Tata Bolt. We had our lunch after that.
The five cars were R1, R2, R3, D1 and D2. R were petrol cars, D were diesel. Two pit stops on the way, enough snacks on the way, Captain Bolt interactions in between were all enjoyable moments. The first pit stop was the Leisure Valley ground, around ten minutes’ drive and just over three kilometres. . We had a classic track here to perform a rugged suspension test of Tata Bolt and every car driver and passengers were interviewed at the end of their respective rounds. Our team D1 was the first to perform the test and in fact we did it twice as it is always ‘Ye Dil Mange More’ J. We all moved for the next pit stop that was Aravali Resorts. This was just over an hour’s drive to cover a distance of around forty six kilometres. A small break here, some experience exchanged among people travelling in different cars, some more snacks and the exchange of cars. We had now R1, the petrol car in lieu of D1, the diesel car. Petrol car has three modes – City, Economy and Sport. When you are on Sports mode, it is not you managing the speed, brakes etc. it is the car that manages you, speed and brakes. Logically it becomes a little intelligent in leveraging you for some freedom J.
Two issues about the car – while you are on driving seat and you use blinkers or indicators, you don’t get the sight of respective indications on the dashboard in front of you due to steering coming right in between your eyes and the space on dashboard displaying it. Probably a steering-less car will remove that hurdle JJ. Another issue is that when ignition goes off during the drive, due to high gear etc., you have to take the key out, insert again and then the ignition goes ‘on’. Is it a real issue or may be happening due to less time spent with the car and the friendship between the car and driver not reached to a level where you start thinking about each other more seriously. J. Whatever enjoyment, confidence and freedom I got from the car while driving it was far more than the above two issues.
From Aravali Resorts, 76th Milestone, Delhi-Jaipur Highway it takes less than an hour to reach Neemrana Fort which is roughly fifty kilometres in distance. As usual the issue that I encounter mostly visiting forts etc. is the final stretch and am sure everyone visiting such places faces it. Government and administration really need to take a call on this for providing a better road/ passage/ space. A little climbing, stairs, pictures on the way, crossing the swimming pool and finally reaching the hall where fifteen esteemed Bolt experience holders were supposed to sit, relax, discuss their experiences, exchange blog names and twitter handles; sharing pictures on Facebook/ Twitter/ Instagram, snacks etc. After some relaxation we had a round of Neemrana Fort-Palace along with a local manager who explained each and every point of the Fort.
Finally the moment of the day arrived when Ragini was announced winner of Tata Bolt car. Another moment when Priyanka won the Pic of the Day contest. Superb. Congrats to both. While coming back we had an option of driving or relaxing in the passenger seats. I decided to drive the R1 and enjoyed it driving in Sports mode. When you change mode you will find only Eco and Sports as the City mode is by default and you don’t need to set it.