How Did It All Start?Bimal, being a passionate explorer, wanted to travel the world. He loved meeting new people and knowing their culture. Luckily, his friends were also like him and decided to be part of his world tour. So, along with his friends Ananda Mukherjee, Manindra Ghosh and Akash Mukherjee; they went on a journey on 12 December 1926 from Townhall, Calcutta staying at Chandannagar on their first night. Later, he journeyed through various countries like Norway, Syria, Turkey, Vietnam, Egypt, Britain, Finland, Peru, Greenland, Egypt, Greece, Tanzania, Japan, China, US, Germany, Russia etc.., and returned to Calcutta after a decade.
It Was Not A Bed of RosesGoing on a world voyage sounds very interesting. Isn’t it? But was it easy at that time? That would be a big no and to top it all when your transport is a cycle, things are challenging. Bimal and his friends were travelling with very little money and were wearing flannel shirts in the winter season. They used to keep their one hand in their pockets to prevent themselves from dying from frostbite.
During their trip, they also encountered a tiger for the first time but escaped from it. After a few days in the Thar Desert, they faced a tough time as they had to carry their cycles in the scorching heat of Rajasthan. These were only some of the challenges. Bimal worked as a photographer, teacher, sailor, daily wage labourer and many more to earn his way back to Calcutta. When asked how it was possible with all these challenges, he replied, “We are carrying the sun rays from India” which showed his love for the country and passion for travelling.
Explorer Turned WriterBimal Mukherjee published his travel memoirs and shared his experiences in the form of a book called “Do Chakay Duniya” in Bengali, which means ‘The world on two wheels’. His mother was taken aback when he decided to go on a world tour and nearly fainted. But she understood her son and extended her support. In fact, Bhimal said that it was actually his mother who encouraged him to pen down all his experiences and memoirs where he also told he dedicates the book to the youth of India.
Bimal Mukherjee inspired millions with his zeal and extreme enthusiasm for travel. He proved that you could achieve things at any given time with a strong will power rather than depending upon any means or circumstances. This daring voyager from Bengal with his intense fervour to travel became the first Indian globetrotter and no wonder he achieved this remarkable accomplishment.
Does this historical traveller from India give you some major feels? What do you think about his story? Let us know in the comments below!