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Updated: Oct 18, 2023

The thought that the things around us might talk, think and express as we do is undoubtedly a thought many of us have been fascinated by in our day-to-day lives.

“Unnoticed” by R. S. Chintalapati is a narration by a bicycle about its journey from the beginning to the end. It primarily focuses on serving its master to the best of its ability while voicing its only wish.

Cover Photo by Ravindra Patoju

I was manufactured in Mumbai 2008 and my manufacturer made thousands more like me before naming all of us “Street Racer”. I wasn’t a popular model compared to my peers but I had my own merits like not being too heavy and travelling quicker than most others.

After being shipped to Visakhapatnam along with many others, I was decked with covers on my top before being put forth as a spectacle in the showroom. For weeks, I only had admirers. However, since I lacked the strength, many buyers would just walk away deciding I cannot carry their weight.

In time, the sales manager cited to the main dealer that the Street Racer model was not being bought by the public and I’ve lost hope that I will have brothers in the future.

In time, I even lost hope and finalized that I wouldn’t be purchased. I dreaded the thought of being dismantled like many unsuccessful models and being used as spare parts for other upcoming models. However, to my rescue, on 18th May 2009, my master chose me and his father purchased me.

My master looked weak and was as thin as a stick. Though he lacked strength, he claimed to be a Knight, a child’s dream after reading a couple of comic books, I suppose. So I was baptized by him as Knight’s Rider.

When I arrived home, I was offered prayers before being permitted for my master’s first ride. I was glad that my master didn’t weigh much. He was hardly fifty kilograms and that made my job quite easy.

For a while, everything was quite enjoyable. My master stayed close to the beach and the winds were lovely until they started eating my skin. My tires were substandard thanks to my manufacturer and my master even lacked the intellect to select his streets wisely. He would take me over shards accumulated from liquor bottles.

Once every two weeks, my tires needed servicing and patches have become a routine. During the first two years, my master didn’t vacillate on spending money for me, but his parents did eventually calculate the expenses. They asked, “Why did I need so much investment considering I haven’t even served a couple of years?”

I felt terrible for being accused of the way I was. Fortunately, my master’s family shifted home into the interiors of the city. I thought I would be safe becoming free from the beach, but however, my life in this place was even more difficult.

My master started using me so intensely that I almost travelled twelve miles every day for about two years straight. There wasn’t a day, I didn’t wish for a long gap to rest and eventually, the Gods did bless me and my master joined intermediate after finishing his school before he flung me away in an open corner.

This long gap made me lose everything. My tubes got flat, rubber tires had holes while brake covers were worn out due to rainwater and my brake wires congested. My seat now had a big hole and I had crows shit upon me.

I spent two years deprived of attention and almost dead. I understood that I could be of no more use to my master and presumed he would soon sell me for any price he was offered.

My thoughts came true when two children approached my master asking him if I was for sale. Fortunately, my master realized my existence before stating that I was still employed.

The next day with an investment of six hundred rupees, I was given to a local mechanic for servicing but this cheater used the cheapest replacements possible to save as much as he could and I was returned in worse condition than my manufacturer’s intentions.

I had one more plenteous jackpot; my master now weighed seventy kilograms thanks to no physical work for a couple of years. I must admit, Gods protected me for a month and I offered my best to support him, but I couldn’t bear him any longer.

Though we never spoke, I think he heard me this time. Considering his investment worthless, he threw me up back to the corner and two weeks later, I was snatched by two children.

They sold me for four hundred rupees and my new buyer sold me to a metal worker for six hundred rupees. When I was being dismantled, I wished my master had told me once, that I assisted him well. At least I would have felt happy for my existence.

When the last of me remained intact, I said my last words, “I love you, master. I hope to serve you again. Your humble servant. Your Knight Rider.”



This contribution is edited by Sreekar Ayyagari & photographed by Ravindra Patoju.



This flash fiction is available as paperback & ebook.

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