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There's something blessed about Spring Vacation. Whether it's because it comes at the middle of the term,--too far along to remember the late unpleasantness at Midyears, and yet not so near as to make a chap start shaking in his shoes about Finals,--or whether it's just because it's spring, and the flowers and birds and breezes are out and the sun doesn't look at you slantwise, we don't know. But the fellow who invented Spring Vacation deserves a halo and a crown of gold.
There's many a way of spending it, too. Some take the boat or train or plane or what have you for the "Sunny South" and come back looking bronzed and fit like a tycoon. We tried this on a time but frankly found it wanting. First, the Gulf Stream was rougher than the Channel or the Devil's Hole, and the ships must be small to get into Bermuda's harbor. When the sea starts bristling, it does something to the pit of our stomach. Second, we baked our back on the beach the first day, cooked it so fine you could have sold it to the Union for roast beef au jus. Finally, the golf and tennis and the white sails and blue water and salt spray flying had such an allure that we almost didn't come home at all. And when we did arrive in Cambridge weeks late, the Dean's office was nasty,--very nasty indeed. University Hall drew itself up and puffed in indignation to think that anyone could have a good time. We've dared not risk it since.
Once we went to the other extreme and rotted in Widener during the holidays preparing for a make-up exam. Never do it. It dries the skin. One's eyes become dull and glazed, like prisoners' in Sing Sing. And one can't keep one's self respect, cating in Hayes Bickford or Lowell House.
For vacation is the time to watch the spring come in, not to fly to tropical summer or to stretch out winter to the crack of doom. It's the time for a dash on the young colt through country lanes in Connecticut, for tramping over wet hills, bag over shoulder, pushing a golf ball from bog to bog, trap to trap, and every so often sinking a birdie. Time to rise with the dawn, and hark to the lark in the trees by the edge of the lake in the morning mist, and watch the forsythia push forth in glory. And for the evening there's time to push to the metropolis for the theater or a spot of late dancing, just a touch of urban revelry to season the gentle time.
For us the keynote of pleasure came at a Manhattan night spot after a keen day of sport in the Litchfield Hills,--a keynote of country and city life combined. A chappie was entertaining the assembled throng telling about a golf game with one of his friends. It was a game where there'd been a certain amount of boozing before, and the caddie could dish one up from time to time. At the third hole, a short one of about a hundred yards, things were looping along.
The man seized his driver, swung like a giant crane, and topped the ball just short of the green. There he grabbed a mashie, took another terrific swipe at the pellet, topped it again and it rolled into the cup.
That stumped him. "I'm in a helluva mess", he blurted out. "I guess I'll need my niblick to got out of this."
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