3 Indian Mothers Drive From Delhi To London Covering 17 Countries In 97 Days
3Indian mothers drive from delhi to london 21,477km, 17 countries, 97 days and a journey of their lifetime. When best buddies Rashmi Kop par, Dr Soumya Goyal and Nidhi Tiwari embarked on an all-woman expedition be tween New Delhi and London, they dared to give wings to their childhood dream. With no back-up vehicle, the mothers in their mid-30s pushed all boundaries to create awareness on women empowerment. Nidhi who conceptualized the trip was also the only driver at the wheel of the vehicle that was sponsored by Mahindra First Choice.
Nidhi who specializes in outdoor edu cation, off-the-road jeeping, long-distance and high-altitude driving and has a lots of outdoor jeeping experience in India and abroad, floated the idea. And her friends immediately lapped it up.
600km a day: The journey of Women Be yond Boundaries started in June and came a full circle in October, crossing India, Myanmar, China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbe kistan, Kazakhstan, Russia,Finland, Czech Republic, Germany and the United Kingdom. The car which kept the friends company happened to be the first Indian vehicle to cross the Arctic Circle, they maintained.
Rashmi Koppar, who works with MS Ramaiah Hospital, re called the remarkable voyage.The first thing we did while en tering every country was to buy a local SIM card. However, we couldn’t book accommodations in advance as our sched ule kept changing.They trio drove close to 600km a day . It was only in India and England that we spoke in English. In the other countries, we used sign language and Google translator,” added Dr Soumya Goyal, therapist at MS Ramaiah Hospital.
Of course, the women had their families cheering them all along.We wanted to tell the women of the world that such expeditions are possible and that there was nothing to be scared of.We avoided driving late at night, instead, spent evenings exploring the cities. In fact, we didn’t find a single woman driving on the highway till we reached Europe,said Dr Goyal. Uninhabited zones, non-tarred roads, rocky terrains, forests, streams and dunes greeted the women at every turn, giving them the kind of high they always craved for. All three took a sabbatical from their jobs to realize their dream.
The goodness quotient
Among the many hardships the trio faced was the landslide in Myanmar where bridges were washed away. “We took over five days to cover a distance of 200km from Imphal to Myanmar; usually, it takes not more than 2-3 hours. It also meant redoing our visas,said Rashmi.”When we were stuck due to a landslide in Manipur, the locals offered to help us. We trusted them and stayed with their families and also got to taste home-cooked Manipuri food.
The trip reinforced my faith in human goodness, she said. The trip was sponsored by the ministry of youth affairs and sports, ministry of external affairs, India, Mahindra First Choice Wheels, Lenovo India, Via.com, Round Table India Area 6, MS Ramaiah Memorial Hospital,Social Empowerment by Empowering Women SEEW, Tea Trails India.
They also had to face certain hardships in the journey. We took over five days to cover a distance of 200km from Imphal to Myanmar; usually, it takes not more than 2-3 hours. It also meant redoing our visas,recollects Rashmi.