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For the Workaholic Who Can't Concentrate
Learn to cherish silence in Bali. During Nyepi, the Hindu New Year, usually around late March or April, everything stops. (Nyepi literally translates to "Quiet!") Balinese law mandates no lights be lit, no work be done, and no travel undertaken during this sacred period. It's an ideal time to reflect on yourself in one of the most luxurious settings on earth. Contact the Bali Tourism Board for more details: bali-tourism-board.com
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For the Self-Doubting Manager
If overseeing your team feels like herding stray cats, try honing your leadership skills by learning to drive an elephant in Thailand. A three-day program at the Elephant Camp at the Anantara Golden Triangle has you feeding, bathing, guiding, and riding your three-ton charge. Along the way you'll learn the value of patience, perseverance, and even humility. If you can handle an elephant, you'll be primed for those recalcitrant monkeys in your office. The price is $740, which includes room and breakfast.
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For the Possible Career Changers
Still debating whether to switch careers? Test-drive your next dream job without all the strings attached. Vocation Vacations offers one- to three-day apprenticeships in more than 50 industries, including publishing, hospitality, and fashion. (Wanna-be hoteliers, for example, "mentor" with the general manager of Chicago's Hotel Monaco.) Costs range from $549 to $2,149, depending on your chosen field, but consider it a worthwhile investment in your future career.
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For Those Who Want to Do Business in China
Knowing Chinese is an impressive and exceedingly valuable skill these days. Enroll in a Chinese language immersion program at World Link Education and learn to read, write, and speak basic Mandarin in either Beijing or Shanghai. Costs start at $2,660 and can exceed $12,000 depending on your accommodations abroad and duration of your trip. (Programs range from four to 12 weeks.) In addition, the company offers lessons on business culture, laws, and etiquette. Also included: after-hours tutors, social activities, and study tours.
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You Want to Go Back to School
Who says you can't go back? Satisfy your craving for learning at Oxford the next time you travel overseas. The university's Department for Continuing Education offers weeklong seminars and weekend courses in favorite subjects like archaeology and philosophy. Weeklong seminars cost $2,000 and include lodging and meals; weekend courses range from $80 to $418. If the prospect of homework and cafeteria food doesn't put you off, maybe you are ready to relive those college days!
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