Diplomatic Dilemmas in Delhi

After waking up yesterday in a lovely Delhi hotel room, I felt today was going to be a good day; I wouldn't have to use my AK. I had, after all, recently been blessed by one of the highest spiritual leaders in the land, alongside a sweet Indian Baba, and - I have the neckwear to prove it.

Yesterday’s trip to the Chinese Visa Application Centre ended badly as I’d forgotten one of the nine documents I needed to apply. The rest were all in order they say. "Shanti, shanti" I thought. This is why I cunningly booked an extra night in Delhi, for things to go a little wrong.

No matter, regardless of the four hours I’d just wasted screaming round Delhi in auto-rickshaws eating plumes of smog for breakfast, I can just apply tomorrow.

I’ve since discovered that out of any possible two working days I’d allocated to visa processing, one of them is actually Independence Day and therefore a – dry, as in no alcohol – national holiday!

Fantastic… note to self: while calculating working days whilst in an unfamiliar country, check the calendar for national holidays.Never before have I missed flights, until now

Now I must cancel my flight to China. I’m stuck in Delhi for a week, forced to live it up in a lovely hotel with an enormous bed, free Wi-Fi, and a limitless supply of awesome coffee delivered to my door. What more does any scribbler need? A secretary perhaps… mine’s busy at the moment working on a crucial forward-thinking communist publication in Europe; bless her.

Anyways, I revisited the application centre with all the completed documents yesterday morning. Only to be told they needed a signed letter from China, within the next two hours or I wouldn’t be able to catch my second booked flight for Tuesday. After much sweating, panicking, cigarettes and coffee the mission was a raging success thanks to my China-based buddies.

Visa application now filed and hopefully those lovely people at the Chinese Embassy will have everything ready for my collection on Monday. Enshalla!

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