I know you are on business, but please take some time off your schedule to feel and smell India. I guarantee return on investment. Can you do all 5?
1-Strall around in a local market.
The vendors will break the ice telling you that “Looking is free”. Yes, looking is for sure free. Laughing a little of this obvious reminder -is also free. Either you are a first timer or a regular visitor; walking around in a big Indian market, looking and looking, will really re-charge you.
2-Get up with the birds to see the sunrise
Everyone has a photo of the sunset. You should bring home one of the sunrise. Do you know what else you will get? You will experience a totally different city, village or beach. Not only the light is different – but also the incents, the sounds and the ambience. India will generously reward you for the inconvenience of getting out of bed early. The bonus is it will kick-adjust you into the new time zone. Note: I want you to be out and in position when it is still dark.
3-Read a India book in a public place
Browse a book you come across somewhere -about something totally new. Something hyper Indian. It doesn’t necessarily have to be about Gandhi or Hinduism. Something more practical as “Yoga for dummies” or a book on Indian street-food will also do the trick. Find a nice spot to sit for a couple of hours. I would suggest a nice cafe with a masala tea, Fresh lime soda or Indian white wine in the glass (though it violates the “free concept” of this list, it is at least almost for free). You will explore something new. I found out Bebinka is a traditional 16 layer Goan dessert.
4-Talk to a total stranger
Once in a while, go beyond “hello and good-bye” with someone you don’t necessarily need to talk to. Be curious. Ask questions. I am sure you will come out of it a little more wise each time. I am not talking about asking a guru for spiritual directions. It could as well be understanding how and why the street side vendor is packing milk in small plastic bags.
5-Try Yoga or meditation
You don’t need to escape to an Ashram for a week. You could just ask someone to teach you some basics, or just look at one of the thousands introductions on YouTube. Looking is free. Try it out in the privacy of your hotel room. You are in India, so you might get inspired to try it out in a park or the beach? (Getting a sunburn is free) Don’t worry if you don’t take it to that level. Anyhow you can go home and tell you did Yoga on your business trip to India.