On My Way To La Serenissima!!

This is coming to you from Chennai airport where I await the boarding call for my first ever solo trip.

The ‘solo’ bit seems to have thrown a few people off kilter, including the Italian consulate, that demanded a letter from my husband stating he had no objection to my traveling alone!!! While he couldn’t wipe the grin off his face, I came close to telling them to chuck their visas in less polite lingo. My urge to wander proved stronger than my injured pride though. I was convinced the visa processing officer must have been an MCP Indian male, until my sister – who travels solo quite often – informed me that it was pretty common practice with most countries she had applied to! In this day and age???

The five days since our return from Kabini passed in such a blur, I just couldn’t find time to sort out and process my photos for the Bhuta Kola story as promised. Sincere apologies. Shall do it first thing after my return on the 6th. Until then, here is a teaser:


Have a great week ahead……….I know I will 🙂

Posted by

Hi, I'm Madhu. Wanderer. Travel blogger. Story teller. Bitten late and hard by the travel bug, I am on a mission to make up for lost time.

115 thoughts on “On My Way To La Serenissima!!

  1. I can’t believe that question. As if husbands are still the owners of their wives. I thought the emancipation had done away with all those questions.

  2. I am shocked that anyone would ask you for a letter of permission from your husband to travel alone. Sincere shock. Well, another lesson learned and it looks like you are on to an AMAZING experience. I will be waiting, not very patiently, to hear more about this! Enjoy 🙂

    1. I was equally shocked Lindsay!! Had no idea that was the standard norm for Indian women traveling alone, since Japan didn’t require one. That was possibly because I was going there on an escorted group tour. I had an amazing time nevertheless 🙂

  3. Wow! I can’t believe that happened, either. My husband would be lording that over me for the rest of my life. Which would probably lead me to quickly become a widow. 😉

  4. I have traveled to Italy solo several times. It’s a good country for your first solo. But even Italian women agree it is a very male dominated culture. I am surprised they asked about your husband. I wonder what they ask single women, for their father’s approval. 🙂

    1. I wondered too!!! A widowed friend was requested to submit a similar letter when she traveled to Spain a while back. She says she was waiting to give them a mouthful if they had asked for a letter from her dad, when she informed them she had no husband. But they never did apparently! 🙂

  5. Oh, bon voyage, Madhu! Wonderful magical travels on this extraordinary first solo adventure. (And ye gads about the consulate/husband thing!)

    Sweet of you to give us the update and the incredible “teaser.”

    Looking forward to hearing and seeing more. 🙂

    1. Ye gads indeed!! Still smarting from that ‘insult’. And can you believe they only granted me a visa for ten days???

  6. The Italian consulat demanded a confirmation, that your husband does not object your travelling alone??? This makes me speechless. I have been travelling alone to many countries and nobody ever asked me such a question. We are living in the 21st century and Italy should behave civilised, also the Indian man working for them.. “Common praxis” ???!!! I am shocked! I wish you many people who welcome you.Happy travels -Ulrike. Whenever you come to Hamburg, Germany, be my guest!

    1. Thank you for your sweet comment Ulrike! This might be exclusive to Indian women, or at least to women from the subcontinent. And Italy might not be alone….I know for a fact that Spain demanded a similar letter from a friend, as did one of the Scandinavian countries my sister visited last year!! Might not be surprised if Germany asks for one too! Unless you send me a letter of invitation 😀 That would be kind of you, but still galling that I need one.

      1. My dear, I realize that I am very priviledged to live here in Germany. If you ever come to Germany, I’ll be happy to invite you.

  7. Phew, that was asking a flea in their ears! If a husband has an objection to his wife travelling alone, tough on him! And whether or not such objection exists is no business of the consulate.

    1. Absolutely! And to add insult to injury, they grant me a visa for ten days, so I couldn’t extend my stay even if I wanted to!!! Thanks for the support Colnialist 🙂

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