Women have come a long way from being confined to four walls of home. There is no denying to the fact that women are as great achievers as any man…sometimes even better. We have women doing all kinds of jobs which earlier were considered a male bastion and so we have astronauts, pilots, doctors, professors, scuba divers, spies, military personnel and taxi drivers too. A few days ago I read about a Pakistani truck driver who happens to be the first woman of her country and an old woman at that.
Men have tried limiting women in stereotypical roles; they have tried to set rules of dos and don’ts; they have raged, ranted and labeled women to scare and dominate but women are tougher than that…we soar new heights every day…we scale new horizons every minute…we achieve greater heights every second.
In keeping up the undying spirit of women, Times of India organised All Women Bike Rally on 5th March across 21 cities of the country. Now in its fourth year this event has bagged a mention in Limca Book of Records with the number of women, participating in this unique rally, increasing every year.
Breaking the shackles of naysayers, women of all age groups participated in this fun rally with full vigour. Some rode Harley Davidson and Royal Enfield bikes and many rode on their non-gear bikes and scooters.
I joined in too on my scooty and was amazed to see the sea of women who had turned up for the event.
I was participating for first time and had no idea how enthusiastic women were in making a statement. Women were dressed in all kinds of attires….the sari didn’t stop them and neither did the traditional ‘nauwari’ or the nine yards of typical Maharashtrian Sari. The younger ones wore western attires and some stuck to salwar kameez.
Decked up in traditional ‘mangalsutras‘, ‘nath‘ and armful of bangles, some even had typical Mahrashtrian head scarf, the ‘pheta‘ adorning their heads.
They came in pairs and they came in groups, some advocated social messages of saving girl child and some declared that women were no less…
Age did not deter women to participate either. I was particularly blown over by a granny Asha Patankar of 73 years old who had her daughter-in-law for company on another bike. Not only were they defying the clichéd MIL-DIL equation with their camaraderie but also their enthusiasm was infectious.
The rally was flagged off by the DCP of Traffic Police, another woman of grit. We rode for an hour with bikers shouting on top of their voice ‘Jai Bhavani, Jai Shivaji‘. Traffic police managed to provide an uninterrupted passage for all the bikers throughout the 18kilometers of road.
The event ended on a high note with participants getting prizes for their attire, bike decor and historical character representations. And then there was song and dance too….
I would have preferred if women were encouraged to wear helmets instead of only decking themselves up….after all safety should be paramount concern along with empowerment of women. A rule-abiding woman can bring about change better than a woman who falls victim to unsafe driving!
All in all the event was a fun-filled morning…an attempt to reiterate woman power…that women will never back away now…We have fire in the belly and wind under our wings…
A very happy International Women’s Day to my fellow wives, moms, sisters, daughters and grandmas.