Kenneth Maginnity, the man from Australia on his journey throughout India on a vintage Royal Enfield, a legendary motorcycle. Apart from the touring, we found the cause of his riding is something really noble, the journey is only one part of the adventure, more important than the journey, “are the people of India”, he says “I was born in Australia, received a great education and the opportunity to choose a career of my choice. A large majority of the people of India are not as fortunate. I learned that most people in rural India live on less than a dollar a day. Imagine trying and raise a family on such a small amount of money. This usually means that education is not a priority and many of the children are left to beg in the streets. As these children grow into adulthood, with no education…..there have limited job opportunities. It is a vicious cycle, one that is hard to break.”
You may not be able to ride along with Kenneth, but you can be a part of the journey by contributing to his efforts to End Poverty. “This is a journey I have dreamt of for a many years, the time has come to stop dreaming and start riding. In May 2012, I will fly to Delhi, India to begin my journey.
I’ll be riding approximately a 8000km/5500mile across India, from Delhi to Kolkata. Along the way I will be traveling through Kashmir, on to Rajasthan, back to Delhi, over the Ganges River, up to Kathmandu and end my journey in Kolkata
I am excited… I can’t wait to see the breath taking scenery, to connect with the Indian people along the way, to eat the exotic foods and experience the fascinating Indian culture. I have had a dream for many years now, a dream of riding in India and the great Himalayan ranges, the freedom, solitude, food, people, scenery and just the experience have kept my mind ticking over for years. To dream of this road, this ride, this adventure is not enough anymore and in May I will set out to fulfill my dream and make a difference at the same time.
So which bike have I chosen for my 5000 mile journey? A KTM 950 Adventurer, BMW R1200GS or even the Kawasaki KLR 650 all great machines in their own right, well not a chance. A bike not made of plastic and bolt on extras, no personality straight from the factory floor, not a chance. Being a lover of classic cars and bikes I did my research, hunted around and well my pony is going to a 1965 Royal Enfield, a bike for yester year with classic lines, good looks and a individual personality. She was in a bad way when I found her and needed a full strip down to be bought back to her glory days, a few phone calls and the proceeds of a money tree I have out back and she is now being restored. Now with only a few months to go her chrome is shining and you can see her classic lines again, soon with a new coat of paint she will be ready to thump over the roads of India once again.
The route so far has me riding 5500 miles over 90 to 100 days. I am sure though as the time draws nearer to my ride there will be extra miles, cities and places to adventure to while I am there. Mumbai is the starting point for the old girl and I, heading straight out of the hassle and bustle of a city with 19 million people I will be looking forward to the long beaches of Goa where I will sit back and watch the sun set over the Arabian Sea with sipping a malt beverage.
Sarchu – Manali. 4th July
Manali – Shimla. 8th July
Shimla – Haridwar. 10th July
Haridwar – Delhi 14th July
Delhi – Bareilly 23rd July
Bareilly – Bhairahawa. 24th July
From Goa I will head back north and ride the twisting roads through Pune, Amedabad avoiding the National Highway where I can all the way to Rajasthan. Rajasthan with her beautiful deserts, salt lakes, vibrant colors, tigers and elephants is going to be an experience for sure. I will stop in Rajasthan for a few days to rest and get ready for the most physically challenging part of the ride.
The Rohtang pass in the great Himalayas standing between me and my destination, the road is going to challenge me at every bend. The pass is at an average of 15000 feet with one section maxing out at 18563 feet, higher than any point here in Florida, with such altitude changes not only will I be challenged but my Royal ride will be as well. For sure it looks like I am going to have to be “at one” with my carbi and just might need to rejet the old girl once or twice on the ride. Not to mention the glacier feed river crossings, barely working bridges and the occasional avalanche over the road, yes there are going to be challenges, it is when we are challenged that we grow so I am looking forward to all.
On the other side of the pass lies Kashmir, being spring the country side will be bursting with color and the lakes will be full of crystal clear water, I might just have to take one of the many house boats out for a day or two and update my blog, write in to Classic Motor Cycle Magazine, then stop and watch the sun drop behind the great Himalayan Ranges, malt beverage in hand.
After exploring Kashmir I will ride on down to the busy city streets of Delhi, a quick photo stop at the Taj Mahal then back on the bike to the most holy of Hindu rivers the Ganges, I will not stop for a swim but for sure I will be clicking away with the camera. Then I will take a winding road up to Kathmandu. With the old city streets and ancient maket place the Enfield and I will fit right in. Now there is a small bar in Kathmandu owned by a couple of Australian motorcycle enthusiasts and well being an Australian native, I think it would be rude not to stop by and have at least one cold refreshing drink. From there it will be up to Base Camp on Everest, the roof top of the world. Though 1000 feet lower than the Rohtang pass I will still stop and watch the sun set and with Everest in the back ground it will truly majestic. With another dreamed fulfilled I will take the long road down to Kolkata where the ride will come to an end and the journey will start.
As I planned out the ride and add up the costs I looked at India and her people. With over 1 in every 4 people living in poverty the cost of the ride would support around 30 families for one year. I already work with the homeless in Fort Lauderdale but when I thought of India I just wanted to make a bigger difference and really touch some lives. So I have teamed up with an organization called endPoverty, the work they are doing in India as well as well as worldwide is amazing. They do not give a hand out the give a hand up, by provide economic support in the form of a small loan supplemented for business development, equipping thousands of poor entrepreneurs and enabling them to support their families and contribute to their communities in ways never before possible. Families are being transformed, as are communities. Once barely surviving as they looked for capital, these loan recipients are now even donating money to help operate two children’s homes that are caring for orphans. They are supporting education scholarships for children in their communities that have financial burdens. This really is helping end the vicious cycle that is poverty.
Restoring the 1965’s Royal Enfield
So when you are next online please come and stop by my website www.indiaonanenfield.org There are links to Facebook and twitter so you can be kept up to date with the bikes restoration, If you feel you would like to help break the poverty cycle there is a donate link and 100% of money raised will go directly to the work of Endpoverty and the work they are doing in India. “
About Kenneth Maginnity
|I am a private chef and I have been for over 10 years, it has been a life of ease and convenience. I have had the opportunity to travel the globe, to see many wonderful places and meet many amazing people. In some of these places I have seen severe poverty and in other places opulent wealth. I have met many people that want to make a difference but didn’t know how to do it, so…they, including myself ended up doing nothing. I am just a guy that wants to make a difference; I can’t just stand on the sideline and watch any longer.|
|I have dreamt of making this trip across India for many years. I know it will be very challenging but I am very excited to take on this adventure. So, I decided to look for a way to fulfill my dream and to make a difference in the lives of the people of India. I did some research, made a few phone calls and partnered with endpoverty.org and started my journey to make a difference. The organization is impacting the lives of people living in poverty across the globe..…including India. I decided to help to promote their organization and the great work they are doing in India as I ride across the country.|
|I have already spoken to many people who are excited about what I am doing and would love to lend a hand. These are people that want to make a difference but didn’t know how, now they are supporting the journey and endpoverty.org. The main reason for this ride is to make a difference in the lives of the people of India that are living in poverty, people who have not been as fortunate as I have. I want to do something worthwhile. If you feel the same, please stop bywww.endpoverty.org/Kenneth and lend a hand. Thank you.|
Photo, Story courtesy : Kenneth Maginnity