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High in the Himalayas

The challenge of cycling in the foothills of the Indian Himalayas is rewarded with more memorable local encounters than can be had sat on a bus


I REALLY HAD TO ADMIRE THE BUS DRIVER the way he greeted my horror-stricken face, which was inverted in his windscreen, with such a sweet and engaging smile. Seconds earlier, my bike's handlebars had been snared by a low-slung power line, and the bike catapulted from the bus's roof rack. Sitting cross-legged on the roof, I watched in disbelief as my bike now dangled above a rutted mountain pass while we continued our descent into the valley.

Hanging from the roof of the bus, I hammered on the windscreen. 'Stop... my bike!' Unfazed, the driver calmly negotiated the narrow mountain pass in reverse until he was positioned under my stranded steed.

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