I am sure that there are a multitude of Indians for whom globetrotting is like a second skin. These people are the polished ones, who represent our country and our culture really well. These are the people who have an intelligent repartee to those set of foreigners who actually ask us "where we park our elephants?" (Believe it or not, my friend who freelanced as a tour guide for visitors from cruise ships was actually asked this question).
But unfortunately these guys are just a drop in the ocean. They form part of a minute fraction of Indians who actually know to conduct themselves on the foreign arena. Here is a sample of the kind that really represent us.

A young newly married couple (no it doesn't matter whether they were north or south Indians) came to the reception of the hotel I was staying at. The man bellows for a room and was informed that he would have to put down a deposit. To which the man takes a 100 USD note and flings it onto the receptionist. He then asks what comes "Free" with the room. As it goes breakfast and cocktails are free for the room he has rented. Since it was evening the man thought that it be pertinent he ask for something in place of breakfast since he had already missed it.

So the receptionist replies sweetly that the water in the room and the sachets of tea and coffee were complimentary. Next the man asks for a room with "a good scenery" since the couple was just back from Bali and the view he got was bad for a price that was too high.

Its sad that such uncouth people actually represent our country in this manner. We went to a massage parlour and the owner by way of conversation said that most of the Indians walked into his parlour and the first thing they asked for was discount. And they never ever thanked the staff for their courtesy. When it comes to Indian shoppers, the first word on the tips of their tongues are "discounts". I mean if you are walking into a store that is already selling you stuff at a 10 per cent discount, what more do you want. We need to understand that street shopping is in designated places in foreign countries, not in the big stores where fixed prices are exactly that - fixed.

Another friend was also talking about how difficult it is for an Indian coming to Singapore to rent a flat. He says the best way to do this is to go through an Indian agent, who will find you a flat that is owned by an Indian. A Singaporean will almost never rent out a flat to an Indian simply because we don't know how to maintain it.

The impressions we make on the international front are really pathetic and the sad part is that it reflects badly on the small minority that do know how to conduct themselves