• This is India! 105

This is India! 105

Welcome back to This is India! I always have funny/weird stories about India to share with friends or family when I talk to them. This is just meant to be an honest portrayal about my life in India through short anecdotes. I also share here what I’ve been up to online outside Werkenntwen.

What I was up to other than here:

  • It was my birthday yesterday! I’m going to write a “this is India” about what a monsoon Goa birthday is like! Monsoon has pretty much hit, so this week was a lot of movie watching and chilling with friends.
  • I’ve still been writing for Bravo. Never thought I’d be getting paid to write about Kim Kardashian! lol
  • I have one week here in Goa before I head back to start all my upcoming adventures.

Now your story,

I recently flew back into India and landed in Bangalore first instead of Mumbai, to catch my Goa connection. I’ve done immigration in Bangalore and I remembered that they were very rude but there was no line which beats Mumbai any day.

When we got off our Etihad flight, it was 6 AM and there were only 20 people on the plane, only 3 of which were foreigners. Everyone had been sleeping since the plane was empty and we all had a row to ourselves so we didn’t get the immigration papers from the fight attendants. I realized as I was leaving but you can always get them at the immigration line. Most flights forget to hand it out or accidentally hand me the Indian one.

When I got to the immigration line there were no papers. There was no line either and I asked the guys at their boxes where the slips were to fill out. They pointed to a guy in the corner at the desk and said he has them.

I asked that guy and he said “they are out there, in the boxes”. I told him, no the boxes were empty

“they haven’t been filled with slips… there are none there and us foreigners need them”.

“go ask your airline for a slip”

-“I have just walked 10 minutes here and there are boxes saying “immigration slips” which should be re-stocked, so restock them. I’m not going back to the plane which probably isn’t even there anymore.”

….long pause…. he signed LOUDLY and annoyed.

He opens a drawer without getting up about 10 seconds later, looks inside without touching anything. “There are no slips.”


… he looks at me blankly, still sitting.

My god… THIS IS IMMIGRATION!” I yelled at him. “Get up and find them and restock the bins which are LABELED so clearly they are meant to be there”.

Hating me, he gets up and finds another guy. That guy had 3 in his pockets. He handed them to us. How lucky there were exactly enough? What’s most annoying is if I hadn’t yelled at him, he would have done nothing. They would have watched foreigners just stand around confused. No one was going to do any work that AM. It was still nap time for them it seemed. I hate that I have to be rude to get things accomplished because I would never have spoken to someone like that back home- I would have never needed to.

Then they sat back down on their lazy asses after us 3 got our slips, not searching for more for the next crowd.

As always, a very annoying welcome back to India as airports are the most annoying place in the whole country!

This is India!

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About the Author:

Rachel Jones left a career in nursing and lived on the beaches of Goa, India for the five years. Now she lives in Mexico where she gives advice on the 40+ countries she’s visited in the last 10 years. She’s the author of two India travel e-books: Guide to India and Insider’s Guide to Goa. Her blog, Werkenntwen, like its name, is a contradiction combining off-beat adventurous places with glamorous and bespoke travel. Werkenntwen has been featured in ELLE, Marie Claire, Grazia, and Cosmopolitan magazines. She’s a writer for Bravo TV.


  1. Rohan Dhillon June 12, 2016 at 5:29 pm - Reply

    As a global trotter, pausing my job for a indefinite while i can so relate to this. Being half indian sometimes can be of no use, here with my girlfriend they put as in the same boat with the immigration papers. The guy heavily swore at us, when I showed him the way of law without realising I understood every word he said as per how he would ‘Do’ her if I wasn’t around and I also had a Gopro active, got him arrested and his ass kicked. When we landed reported it to the local minister- . So this is what i realised about india…. If you are not well off, they will treat you like crap. One has to vomit confidence to there faces, as people are nice- the lower class and government officials can harden your patience. Chasing a gypsy lifestyle comes at a cost. Hats off to you Rachel.

    If one has to go around, where should one stay in Goa? What is monsoon for Goa? I travel to taste food, what all should I eat? I bet you must have met some really cool people, where could I learn from them?

    • Rachel Jones June 12, 2016 at 10:44 pm - Reply

      Thank you for sharing that story with us. If you go to my homepage and search “Goa monsoon” you’ll see a few articles about where to stay and what to do during the rains.

  2. Zara June 12, 2016 at 6:20 pm - Reply

    Yeah. This annoys me immensely too. I don’t want to be rude, but after a year of living here I realise rudeness is the only way certain things will ever get done. And.. like you said, you would never have to be rude back home…sometimes i don’t decor use myself, but there’s no way around it either. Sad.

    This and the perpetual line cutting are top of the list. Back home people would be falling over themselves telling me to cut ahead of them (i’m visibly pregnant and carrying a tired toddler) but here grown men think nothing of stepping on my toes to save 2 minutes out of their day. There’s a line douchebag!

    • Zara June 12, 2016 at 6:21 pm - Reply

      Recognise myself*.
      Ugh. Autocorrect. Sorry

      • Rachel Jones June 12, 2016 at 10:45 pm - Reply

        Yes, I feel ya with the line cutting too! It’s another example of how we have to change our ways to fit India :P

  3. Tim UrbanDuniya June 24, 2016 at 2:10 pm - Reply

    Soooooo frustrating – and it’s just unbelievable how this is their job yet they seem surprised when they are required to do it. I know this feeling very well :/

  4. H July 4, 2016 at 12:21 pm - Reply

    As an Indian, it really angers me when foreigners are being ripped off, or being treated unfairly. I remember once talking to a European woman who was in Chennai with her two kids when her tour guide (or so I thought, the way he was talking to her was more like an abusive boyfriend). I have always wanted to apologize to them on the behalf of my people because God knows how many people still think we Indians are an uncivilized bunch who don’t even have basic manners!

    • Rachel Jones July 4, 2016 at 8:49 pm - Reply

      It can be frustrating. Of course it happens to travelers everywhere, not just India and most are used to that while they travel. I have been to over 30 countries and of the ones I’ve been to, I would say that in India my first few months I did encounter ripoffs nearly daily which I never encountered anywhere else.

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