MILKMAN PHOTO & INDIA VISA RUN
This is photo of Milkman in Bristol.
BACK FROM VISA RUN
I thought I was early. But the was already a line or queue as they say here in front of the Indian Embassy. They opened the door and in a very orderly way they process the Visas. They said I would have about 5 days to wait. I need to call on Thursday. I will call on Wednesday in the event it is quicker. The Visa cost me 55 Pounds or about 90 Dollars US.
This is probably the most time it has taken for a Visa in my travels. If I was a British Citizen I could have gotten it in one day. I was talking with a Brit before I entered. Sort of older, retired, and English. I said to him,
“Well, I have to admit. I have been to 53 countries and India has set the record for difficulty.”
“Anyone that has entered countries knows that this is a very simple process and you can never get a Visa faster than this.”
“Where can you get a Visa the same day?”
“Syria Embassy in Istanbul.”
He was not listening, but I already knew that. He already had his answers. This is sort of the culture.
The most time consuming visa before this was the Venezuela. I applied one day and got it the next. This one will take a 5 days. I am always in a different country and applying for Visas. So all things are equal.
THE WORLD IS NOW AWAKE
6:30 and some people are coming in the kitchen. I awake every day around this time. Most backpacker Hotels are empty until about 8:30. This is very strange. I will need to put away the computer and finish my preparations for the Visa application. I am not looking forward to this. I do not like to have to be at a place by a certain time when traveling. It is very difficult. I will probably sit in front of the building waiting for it to open, or arrive just a little late. Either way there is not way to control anything. I just know that all will turn out OK.
BACK TO THE VISA
I need to leave the Hostel at about 7:30. I will need to find Aldwych Street here in London. This could be easy or difficult. There is a map upstairs to check. Hopefully it has the street name in the map index. It is better to get to the Embassy early. Before they become fussy and impatient because of the large number of people that apply for visas. I am sure at about 10:00 in the morning it would be very busy. I will try to get there to be at the door when it opens. This I hope will get my visa application on the top of the pile for the week and I can get it in 2-3 days and not 7 as is possible.
Moving around or trying to find offices in large cities can be easy and difficult. In countries like Ecuador or Thailand it is best to just pay the 2 dollars for a taxi. Here a taxi would probably cost 25 dollars. So I will use the tube or subway. Transportation and all travel in the more developed countries is more difficult then in the lesser developed countries. In a cheap country like India. I can normally just flag a taxi and the driver will sort it out. Here I am the sorter. They will do it here also, but I would have to sell my first child to pay for it.
VISA APPLICATION DAY
Today I go and make the application for my India, Visa. The office opens at 8:30 this morning as best I can determine. It is presently 6:04 and I am sitting in the Kitchen of the Hostel typing on this computer. The place is very quiet and I am lucky. I was able to shower with the least amount of problems. My dorm room is pitch black and impossible to see so I had to find my shampoo, toothbrush, and other things in the dark. I have a system somewhat of always putting this stuff in the same place together in one of them 1 gallon zip-lock plastic bags.
The people living or sharing a dorm room can be very touchy sometimes. I share the room with 3 other people. So if they drank a lot, or stayed up half the night, or they just cannot deal with anything, or they are a light sleeper, etc. they can grunt and groan and complain. In the end it is best to just try to do what you have to do as quietly as possible, and not pay attention to any of them. It is October and at least one half of the residents have a job or a looking for a job, and other sorts of activities. Very few are what I would call travelers or tourist. They came to London to live and wander around a little. I am sure in the summer it is much crazier. This is one of the calmest and most mature Hostels in which I have ever lived. This probably due to the Australians and New Zealanders. This is a place to meet the people from these 2 countries. But what is nice is that they are very normal. The proper amount of being crazy and drinking and laughing, but none of the tree hugger, tell you how to live zealots.
SAUSAGE AND HAM
I was preparing yesterday to cook an egg sandwich in the kitchen. This girl was next to me breaking into the package of sausage. There was already a slab of bacon in a skillet. I looked at her and said,
“That would make a vegetarian have a heart attack!”
“We Ozzies do not get too worried.”
This was nice for a change. In fact this is great. I do not think the meal she was eating was proper or healthy. I would not want to eat that much fat in one sitting and could honestly say my Egg Sandwich was a lot healthier. But it is nice of people to just be normal. The vegetarians and vegans are the most obnoxious types of travelers because they constantly want to change me or anyone that would just eat. Like a reformed smoker, or drinker they can spend their whole time trying to make you feel guilty for eating.
I am in favor of eating healthy. I am not in favor of making people feel guilty on a minute by minute basis.
Now the Hostel in which I am living may be quite different. I do think the manager sorts out the travelers and keeps the crazies on the outside of the front door. This is good. A little balance for a change.