Like many seniors, Sparsh Chauhan (12) got his license sophomore year. But unlike many seniors, he views cars as more than a mode of transportation.
“I strongly believe that when people drive, it represents them in a way,” Sparsh said. “I feel like my car is a big part of me.”
Through hours of tinkering and tweaking, he has effectively upgraded his limited edition black BMW sedan into an enhanced vehicle, complete with a repainted exterior and LED interior lights. At night, the cabin lights up in a rainbow of colors.
“[The lights] took like six hours to install,” Sparsh said. “They dance to the music, and they are fun. Some things that people find trivial is actually really important to me. To me, the small details matter.”
His drive to school is sacred — a time to relax and contemplate his day on a familiar route.
“First, I start at my house,” he said. “Then, I turn on Saratoga, and it’s always crowded with traffic and stuff. That’s when I’m setting the music, checking the tire pressure, the gas. After downtown, the road gets smooth, which is when I put the windows down. I go all the way down until there’s a dip and then I go back. Even when I have stuff to do, I drive that same route every day. I don’t have to take directions. I know all the traffic times; I know exactly where I’m going.”
One day, Sparsh’s friend Vijay Bharadwaj (12) experienced one of these drives.
“He suggested to his close friends one day to take a drive to watch the sunrise one morning,” Vijay says. “Nobody would ever suggest going watching the sunrise because waking up at 5:00 am seems like a terrible idea. But it was so worth it, just bonding with Sparsh and our best friends.”
Sharad Chandra (12) noted Sparsh’s pride, both in his car and on the soccer field. He said that Sparsh always took it upon himself to stand up for his teammates, defending them from the taunts of the other teams or fans.
“Everybody looked to him to score the game-winning goal or take us to the next round, Sharad said. “He took a lot of that on his shoulders… He was the focal point, and someone everybody relied on.”
Just like he fine-tunes his car and his soccer game, Sparsh also puts in the grueling work to maintain his fitness level. To him, working out is a way to fulfill personal goals, rather than a shortsighted pursuit of a superficial aesthetic.
“My intention is to be as fit as possible, not as big as possible,” Sparsh said. “I’m not going to be the person to wear things like sleeveless hoodies […] I came up with a specific workout, and it took me two years bring down my body fat.”
Sparsh finds satisfaction in accomplishing goals, no matter what the activity. He thinks about them as he moves rapidly forward, his journey illuminated by the flickering of rainbow LEDs.
Additional reporting by Winged Post news editor Vijay Bharadwaj.