It looks like Bi­joy's petrol­head genes have skipped a gen­er­a­tion. Or have they?


WHEN YOU ARE DEEPLY PAS­SION­ATE about some­thing in life, you ex­pect your chil­dren to show some in­ter­est in the sub­ject, right? If film ac­tors, politi­cians and sports pro­fes­sion­als can ex­pect their chil­dren to fol­low suit and make merry of the op­por­tu­ni­ties and ex­po­sure that comes eas­ily to them, an hon­est to god au­to­mo­bile en­thu­si­ast can ex­pect his chil­dren to like cars and bikes, right?

Not that I was in­tent on force feed­ing my son car and mo­tor­cy­cle stuff all the time. But the fact re­mains that he had ac­cess to car games, au­to­mo­tive pub­li­ca­tions and test cars and bikes of all kinds over the last 20 years. I du­ti­fully bought him the rarest of rare Hotwheels ma­chin­ery and vi­car­i­ously en­joyed the sheer joy of play­ing Need for Speed hours on end. But some­where down the line my son lost in­ter­est in cars and mo­tor­cy­cles and started play­ing God of War. To me that was sac­ri­lege since video games meant NFS or Colin McRae. I couldn’t un­der­stand why one would play a game where you re­lent­lessly beat up peo­ple or shoot them. But he did find sheer en­joy­ment in this and pro­gressed to play­ing DOTA (De­fence of the An­cients… for the unini­ti­ated). And that is when I re­alised that my son has as much in­ter­est in in­ter­nal com­bus­tion en­gines as Don­ald Trump has in Mex­i­cans.

But I still had hope that when he turned 18 he would want to drive or ride. He showed early in­ter­est in rid­ing and could wres­tle my RX 135 with off-road tyres around a mud track. Be­fore I could emit a silent vic­tory cry, he lost in­ter­est in mo­tor­cy­cles. Then I de­cided to teach him driv­ing. Mind you, driv­ing as a life hack and not em­u­lat­ing Jac­ques Vil­leneuve, my hero. I told him if he learnt to drive he could have one of the fam­ily cars to go to col­lege. He

I of­fered my son the key to my Har­leyDavid­son and even sug­gested that it will suit his physique... to

no avail

took the Volvo bus in­tead.

Af­ter tremen­dous amounts of co­erc­ing he started to take lessons with me in my Lo­gan. He was sur­pris­ingly good be­hind the wheel (all that NFS time did not go wasted, I told my wife proudly). One day he drove the Lo­gan bril­liantly and parked it. That was it. He was not in­ter­ested in driv­ing any more.

So he walks, takes ricks and trains and in the worst case sce­nario calls an Uber or Ola to move around. He is a big boy at 20 and I of­fered him the key to my Har­ley-David­son and even sug­gested that it will suit his physique… to no avail.

Dev­as­tated? To some ex­tent, hon­estly, I am. But I am be­gin­ning to un­der­stand the fact that he has other in­ter­ests. He loves 3D an­i­ma­tion and graph­ics and that is what he wants to prac­tice and pur­sue. And not hand-brake turns and third gear wheel­ies. And I am grudg­ingly ac­cept­ing the fact.

One day I was ly­ing still in my bed and con­tem­plat­ing what to do with all the mo­tor­cy­cles I have been hoard­ing over the years, when my wife spoke. ‘Good­night… (long pause) by the way your daugh­ter wants to ride your Har­ley when she turns 18’. I didn’t ut­ter a word. A cool breeze danced across the room. Need­less to say I had a rather peace­ful sleep. Hope? Jus­tice? Sil­ver lin­ing? You betcha!L

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