This is officially the longest and most painful of all my travels (I’m not sure if it beats my 18 hours trip from Mangalore to Bangalore in 2007) simply because of all the explaining and waiting I had to do. Ever since my pocket was picked in Barcelona in mid November, I’ve done a billion trips to the police stations across Barcelona trying to get all documents in place so I can go home for the Winter break and come back peacefully. But apparently none of this mattered to the Indian Immigration at the Bangalore Airport – not the copy of the NIE, police complaint or the Authorizacion de Regresso, which was the official document issued by the Spanish government allowing me to re-enter Spain. All they wanted was an apology letter admitting that I was travelling without the required original residence permit and that I would promise to travel with the original henceforth. All this after making me wait for 75 minutes. Now, would this have been any better had I spoken in Kannada? Maybe not. I tried and then quickly realised that the Immigration office in the Bangalore airport was full of Tams, so all my effort in vain. This goes to explain that there is no single formula for success in the Indian immigration.