The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 4, Issue 8 (December 1, 1929)
Your Christmas Vacation
To the city dweller, whose hours and days are passed amidst the bustle and clamour of modern civilisation, whose very life is lived in the smothering confines of office walls, the irresistible appeal of the holiday which comes for so short a while each year is a precious thing, something to be carefully and delicately used.
A morning arrives when the business man need not rush off with fevered haste to catch his tram, and thus begin his day … for the happy hours that stretch before him are his … are free of care, they are his holiday!
The man who, year after year, spends his vacation pottering round his garden; or he, who, having rushed to his office early each morning, passes his free days lounging round his home or drowsing in bed, will never realise the delightful value of the holiday, will never have experienced the glowing excitement of travelling away,—away from the fret and care of city life.
Is there anything more thrilling than the bustle of a railway station … tourists, laughing eager; officials, hurrying through the crowds; the hissing and the piercing scream of an engine; bags, trunks, boxes; everywhere the mystery of suppressed excitement? If only people would realise!
And there are so many places to visit, so many wonders to see, and yet I have heard the old question, “Where are you going for your holiday?” And the answer, “Oh, the usual place!”
Ruts—to many they seem inevitable, but they are so easily avoided. A holiday should be interpreted as meaning new scenes, new faces, new ideas—in short, a change.
We envy those who return to their duties with happy memories of their vacation, and with renewed vigour for the coming year, but we deliberately resign ourselves to a holiday in “the usual place.” It may be an ideal resort, we may know everybody who stays there, but the fascination palls after our first few holidays in the locality. We know it so well; its mystery and joy are gone, but—with a sigh of resignation—where can we go?
Every day, every hour, perhaps every minute, there are trains leaving some station for some destination. Every map of New Zealand is sprinkled with names that you and I have never heard of, never dreamt existed—and no matter which name you choose, you will find it alluring, a place to be explored!
So when the great event draws near—our holiday—just sit down with a map of New Zealand, a railway timetable, and a determination to enjoy. Then when the day arrives, shake your shoulders free of worries, pack your bag, and with a gay heart—commence your ideal holiday!