‘But I’m from Spain’.
‘I repeat: all Latinos need visas!’
It took considerable powers of persuasion to convince the official that Spain is, indeed, in Europe.
But it all went like clockwork for me (except that I had to return and fill in a green card). What was slightly disappointing was that I was not asked at any stage whether I intended to overthrow the government, shoot the President or stick gum under the seats of public transport.
I had quite a wait at the airport, but I passed the time by reading a book and ordering a coffee from a woman called Candida. She proudly wore a badge that proclaimed 'We have had Candida here since 2002'.