Imágenes de páginas

Long tours for the Long Qacation.

IVERY man, in trying to lay out his life to the

best advantage, in seeking to attain to the true savoir vivre, takes great count of his holidays. There is an action and reaction in these things. The more thorough and complete the holiday, the more thorough and complete will be one's life. Everybody understands the short holiday. There are holidays of all sorts and sizes. There is the half holiday, which is only admissible on the half-loaf principle; then that great institution, the holiday from the Saturday, or better still, from the Friday to the Monday; then there is the week or ten days' little tour or sojourn at a country house, quite enough for the latter, in all conscience, unless a man has a tendresse; then there is the tour for five or six weeks, generally much too crowded, when a man, within absurdly narrow limits, strives to work through Murray's Handbook for the Continent. I am not now speaking of short holidays in short vacations; I shall not condescend to take notice of any vacation less than of three months, but

You go

they may be as much longer as you like. Men often mucker away their Long Vacations, and clip and thin them till they are very materially reduced. to see your grandmother, and spend a week in town, or go down to look up your cousins, and the final result is that when you come to look at your Long Vacation in the lump that little pile has undergone a diminution that has marred it, and you are not able to do anything very good with it. It is far better to avail yourself of it in the block, and try and do something considerable with it. One man I know goes off to California to see the Wellingtonea Gigantea ; another to do some antelope shooting in the Rocky Mountains; and another takes a run to Calcutta to get up Indian subjects. Such journeys are not only interesting for the time, but they'pay’afterwards.

It may be worth while to say a few words on the subject of Long Tours for the Long Vacations. Let it be observed that three months are really a good space of time. There is a great deal that may be done in the space of a quarter of a year. the direct case at once. It has been clearly ascertained that you can go round the world in three months. I would advise you to do it in rather more leisurely fashion; but if you are hard up for time, the journey can really be done in ninety days. It is hard work, however, not to say costly. Mr. Ball, in

, one of his admirable Alpine Guides, says that a

I will put



your absence.

considerable number of napoleons may be carried without inconvenience in one's waistcoat pocket. The preliminary inconvenience frequently consists in providing the napoleons in sufficient quantity. But want of coin is often one of the least difficulties. Then there is a considerable amount of pluck required in preparing for a journey of such magnitude. You do not know when your letters will reach you, and you may be nervous respecting what may happen in

Then you may have to put up with considerable inconveniences. Some friends of mine went to Teneriffe lately, but the place was absolutely uninhabitable for civilised beings.

Not many-very few—moneyed men take any extraordinary travels, for they come to places where pluck and endurance count for very much more than money. It is very interesting to note the reasons which cause men to run off for some long excursion during the Long Vacation. A college contemporary of mine, who, while an undergraduate, had a yacht, went over to Canada and saw the Falls and a good deal of the United States between the summer and the October terms. A quiet country parson sitting in his study is perfectly ravished with the accounts of the tropical scenery of the South American forests. He starts straight off for the River Amazon, sees as much as he can in a limited space of time, and comes back again, Many men have a dormant love of adventure evoked

comes on.

by a highly picturesque narrative, and can really find no rest unless they have satisfied this craving. The Journal of the Marquis de Beauvoir, a young man of twenty-two, who with some of the Orléanist princes, went round the world, is one of the most distinguished feats of European travel with which I am acquainted. The work is equally popular both in French and English. Mr. Bayard Taylor's writings suggest the schemes of many a pleasant tour.

Modern travelling has indeed to a very considerable degree changed its character.

At the present time it is assuming a very distinct phase, and that phase is the Long Tour, and how the Long Tour

The Grand Tour has had its day. The railways have brought all capital cities within a manageable distance. I want to show how a Long Tour can be managed within the limits of a Long Vacation. I should almost say that the colonial tour is becoming the fashionable one. It is a great advantage to a man to know something practically about India, Australia, and New Zealand. The colonial questions crop up more than ever.

It is a great advantage to a man to have seen things with his own eyes, and to have heard with his own ears. It makes him in a sort of way an authority on a subject; and he has only to watch all discussion and information on his subject, and steadily read up to it, and he continues to be an authority. Your travelling man, who can travel both widely and wisely, can play a sure card which will help his future chances. No Englishman who can manage a Long Tour in a Long Vacation should be content to leave Canada and New York unseen. He should see the West Indies and the Spanish Main. He should see Australia. The Long Vacation is not as other vacations, for it gives you space and scope. Let the plan of the campaign be carefully marked out, and you will obtain some substantial addition to your social and intellectual capital.

In six days' time you can easily get out to Brindisi. To my mind Brindisi has a great future before it, and there are mighty chances in its favour. To reach it you traverse a great extent of France, Italy, and Switzerland. Of course, in any of these countries, you might profitably spend your three months' holiday. But then you see that you can pick up some knowledge of these countries at any time or any vacation. In the old time there were men who used to think nothing of running over to Paris in order to spend a sociable evening or two, to have a dinner at Philippe's, and go to the Variétés. Italy and Spain in winter, and Northern Russia, including the Lake of Ladoga, in the summer, would well take up any spare three months, or any number of three months that you could manage. let us see what you could do when you get to

But now

« AnteriorContinuar »