In Gurgaon, every day is a thrilling adventure - Hilarious/True?

GURGAON: Recently, one of my NRI (Newly Returned Indian) neighbours complained about the lack of adventure sports and exciting outdoor activities in Gurgaon. He claimed that 'back home' in the US, he could pursue pastimes like mountain biking, canoeing or parasailing — all within a 10-mile radius from his house. There is nothing like that in Gurgaon, he moaned, for that adrenaline rush, that special thrill that comes from plunging down a cliff into sheer nothingness, the feeling of challenging nature and beating the odds, of pushing oneself to one's limits, etc.

Clearly, he knew very little about the extreme sports that we Gurgaonites get an opportunity to indulge in every day of the week, apart from the special seasonal sporting opportunities. Here are the most popular ones.

Red Light Jumping: Forget bungee jumping. What is so courageous about leaping off a cliff knowing that you are safely tied to a stout rope? It takes real guts and precise timing to wait until the last minute and scrape past the signal just as the light turns red. The black SUV in front of you with Gujjar Boy written on the rear window has already rushed past, overtaking you on the wrong side, challenging you to follow suit. Will you make it without loss of life, licence and lasting damage to your vehicle? Nothing can compare to this adrenaline rush.

Jay Walking: Move to a busy place, like MG road on a Saturday evening. Start warming up by walking on the pavement, if you can find it. By the time you dodge a stray pig, jump over a pile of rubble, outmanoeuvre a cycle rickshaw and side-step a lump of dog poop, you are ready for the final test. Watch the pattern of traffic carefully for a break in the flow. When you are tired of watching, run across the road. For added excitement, cross the road holding hands with friends and family. Raise your hands up and scream as though you are on a roller coaster. For extra points, cross back to pick up little Pappu who got left behind on the other side.

Cutting the Queue: The real version of this sport is played out at the toll plaza on NH8. The aim is to disprove the Universal Queue Principle: 'The queue you have joined will be the slowest among all queues.' To achieve the objective, one must continuously keep switching lanes and joining the lane that seems to move the fastest. Since everyone who has queued up at the toll plaza is in a desperate hurry to rush to a life-threatening emergency, the game promises each player the euphoric feeling of struggling against all odds and beating your neighbour to the toll booth. The toll booth officials have taken the game to another level by levying a fee of Rs 21 and ensuring that booths are manned by mathematically challenged folks who will take forever to hand you the change. For a variation, you can try the same game at the parking queue at a mall on a busy weekend.

Fog Driving: For the sheer thrill of taking a plunge into nothingness, try driving in Gurgaon on a foggy night in late December. The local municipal authorities officially sponsor this sport by ensuring that none of the street lights work. Even an extreme sport stalwart will find it unnerving to drive into a dense gray mist in which you cannot see beyond your nose. Add a dose of mystery and suspense by trying to guess which road you are on and whether the sudden thump on your car means that you have run over a stray pig, bumped into a roadblock, rammed another vehicle or reached the gate of your house.

Wild Water Rafting: Gurgaonites no longer have to go to Rishikesh to experience the joys of navigating large swathes of gushing water. Sitting in your vehicle during the monsoons with the water slowly rising up to the exhaust pipe can make you feel that you are in a canoe without a paddle. The objective for the pedestrian and driver is to get from one place to another on the waterlogged roads without drowning, catching pneumonia or walking through untreated sewage.

To push yourself to your limits, try driving through the routes that have Level 4 rapids such as the Three Great Potholes, Stalling Stretch and Drain OverFlow.

In Gurgaon, every day is a thrilling adventure.

In Gurgaon, every day is a thrilling adventure - The Times of India
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