BENGALURU: For many, cooking and biking might seem like tasks that are on opposite ends of the spectrum. But not for chef Avijit Deb Sharma, who considers both to be interlinked. “Riding a motorbike needs attention and care. You need to have the same traits while being a chef too,” explains the executive chef of ibis and Novotel Bengaluru Outer Ring Road. Though passionate about his job, what keeps Sharma going through a tough six-day work week is his ritualistic Sunday morning ride on his Harley Davidson.
Sharma learned how to ride a bike from his father, when he was in class seven, and even admits to having a “hero” moment when he used to ride the Rajdoot bike to school. “None of the other boys had a bike,” shares the now 40-year-old, adding that since there weren’t many cops in his village area in West Bengal back then, he was able to get away with his adventures.
Biking runs in the blood in his family and till today, his family members talk about bikes during their tea and coffee sessions. Having seen him ride a bike since he was barely a teenager, his mother had no qualms about her son’s love for bikes and knew he was a safe rider. “My wife, on the other hand, knew that if she married a biker, she would marry his bike too,” says Sharma with a smile.
While the Sunday morning rides involve stepping out with friends from biker groups (where they cover close to 200km during each ride), the chef’s most memorable ride was the one he took with his wife in January this year. Since the ride spanned almost 1,000km, Sharma asked his wife to accompany him if she was worried about him riding alone. “Our journey took two days and it was an amazing experience. Most conversations during rides with my biking friends revolve around bikes. But with my wife, it was different. Despite not knowing much about bikes, she was there to support me,” he says.
In all these years he has spent riding, Sharma has never been involved in an accident – a feat he credits to his father’s lessons. He says, “My father once told me, ‘When you ride a bike, you should control the bike, the bike shouldn’t control you’. It’s something I remember every time I sit on a bike, and it has helped me remain a cautious rider.”