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The long road home...

Currently about 2:30am in an Internet cafe in the International terminal in Mumbai.

Mumbai has an interesting airport setup. Actually, that's too kind. It sucks. The domestic flights are at a location about 5 miles from the international flights. It's not a big deal if you're staying in Mumbai, but if you're making an international connection, you have to either take a coach, which is fairly efficient but can take a while, or take a cab, where I'm guessing they regularly screw people over. Especially late at night, or if they think someone is in a rush, the driver will probably refuse to use the meter, and overcharge whatever they can get away with. On top of that, the fact that the terminals are so far away from each other also means that they won't check luggage through to the final destination, so you have to go to baggage claim and schlep all your stuff to the other terminal. That is, unless you know somebody, and I don't. In the end, I took the coach, which is about 30 minutes.

There's about a 45 minute line just to get into this terminal because the baggage screening is a bottleneck. After that, I waited another 45 minutes getting to the baggage counter, but they said I'm too early, and they can't take my luggage yet. So I'm killing a few hours at this cafe, at 60 rupees an hour, or about US $1.33/hour.

Around 4am, I'll try to check in my luggage so that I can go relax at the gate before my 8am flight. I guess I could have stayed the night in Mumbai, but I didn't really enjoy it here, so killing 5 or 6 hours in the airport was more appealing than trying to find a reasonable hotel to park in for half a day or something. For some reason, hotels are disproportionately more expensive (in my opinion) in India, and to find something reasonably clean probably starts at about US $50/night, and something comfortable goes up from there.

Hopefully, it's a quick and smooth stop in Frankfurt and I'll be home for dinner!


Wishing you an easy trip back to the states!

Ciao Tad,

I am glad your journey is bringing you back to LA...finally...although I am sure it would be nice to hang out longer in all the amazing places you visited. I look forward to meeting up & I will have my list of questions ready...Say hi to Mike for me when you get home!


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