The flight to Mumbai was as sublimely pleasant as the long haul to Hong Kong had been. It wasn’t until we started our descent that the uncertainty started to set in. Looking down on the city from the approach path you see slums everywhere with occasional stands of sky scrapers sprouting up amongst them. We landed and disembarked and things were pretty predictable until we reached the last turn before the elevator that descended to the H1N1 screening area. Blood curdling screams reached up to assault us and I could have sworn that someone was being tortured. Rounding the corner I was relieved to identify the owner of the tormented bellow. She couldn’t have been more than 2 years old. My relief was instantaneous. A universal sympathy connected me to her parents and I alighted the escalator with a small smile. The customs and immigration process was a tremendous press of bodies. The bodies combined with the unfamiliarity of the language to dispossess me of my remaining emotional energy. I was running on empty.