Accompanying Rana were two ultra runners Jayraman Rankawat and Inderpal Khalsa. The trio covered the distance of 600 kms from Mumbai to Goa from April 6 to April 16.
This is not the first time Rana has accomplished such a feat, previously he had skated backwards for 21km at the Vizag event and then at another event in Hyderabad.
Undoubtedly the difficulties faced along the terrain, roads, traffic and the sweltering heat whilst negotiating body aches and pains would hit him, but his resolve and determination to raise awareness for the cause was just as important. After all “The trip was about the journey and not the destination”
Captivated by many poignant moments along his journey, Rana would regularly update his facebook page sharing interesting thoughts and general observation on regular basis.
Read the full article by Rana Uppalapati:-
It was just two days before the start of the Mumbai to Goa journey spanning 600 kilometres on skates that I had decided to embark on it. The platform was already set by the Pinkathon team for two ultra runners to traverse the same distance. As I would come to know later during the journey, even though the roads and terrain were not suitable for skating, the logistical support was something that I could bank on when venturing into the unknown unprepared. This meant there was gratefulness from the very beginning.
There was no agenda or ambition involved in undertaking this journey. It was an open-mind along with the heart, body and soul that wanted to get away for some time to unlearn and relearn, while capturing the sights, people and my own self on the road. The tougher the better was the only expectation from the trip as I perhaps needed to put myself through this test to realign and survive it with balance and control. The muse of intuition always is like the North Star that guides and pushes the envelope within to perceive, persevere and yet preserve.
The road was not a feather-bed of roses but it sure did allow me to stop and smell them. Starting in the wee hours of the morning each day meant I would invariably stumble upon the sunrise. It was moments like these including detours, feeling of pain, surviving the heat, battling the roads, meeting people along the way, uphill roads, downhill curves, so on and so forth that allowed me to metaphorise and write thoughts into prose and poetry each day, before I would by chance look up at the constellations.
Having always been averse to associating with organizations, since I already am part of an accomplished organization through work, the symbiosis with Pinkathon happened rather easily albeit steadily. The people who heralded it identify with it as a movement, which was easy to see and translate into a move-meant-for-you. Fitness for Women and Cancer Awareness are universally important causes that needed appropriate attention. Other issues close to my heart and home found a voice inward to be expressed outward, publicly than privately, leading me to believe that not sharing is not caring.
A sense of detachment, accepting yet overcoming sudden changes in life, sexual and domestic abuse, being strong, evolution, fruition, continuity, industrial pollution, alcoholism, gender equality, the thankless journey of many a woman, untouchability, empathy, narcissism, mediocrity, construction not destruction, people, relationships, hierarchy of needs, earning the day, walking the path, were either the thoughts or issues that became inspiration for the writing that transpired over the days. The ability to write and share on a public forum was a discovery en route, as I have always written privately until this point, without feeling the need to share unconditionally.
While the ability to go forward without focusing on a map or the destination, the opportunity to enjoy the journey for what it is, the need to adapt to the changes within and around, and the kindness of people along with way seemed to be the main themes that have struck a chord personally; the incidental connection with many a soul online and offline was a takeaway, how much ever I would not like to indulge in these fifteen seconds of fame. It inspired at least one person each to run, speak or organize. I must say the journey had all the ingredients of a good vacation, an unending road, sight-seeing, friends in every town, alone-time, own pace, contemplation, introspection, retrospection, local cuisine, illogical fun and random places to stay at. After all, it was a trip from Mumbai to Goa!
Picture of Rana Uppalapati skating courtesy:- thehindu.com