The Pleasure Principle

No 1: The Holiday Nap

Issue 7 - 2017
By James Collard
Issue 7 - 2017
By James Collard

For some of us, the words “holiday” and “activities” just shouldn’t be in the same sentence. Holiday activities – and likewise activity holidays – are a contradiction in terms, because surely our holidays are the one chance in life we have to be properly lazy – to rest, free of guilt and our relentless ambition and dreary adherence to the work ethic. Above all, holidays should be a time to nap, to sleep – to surrender to the quiet delight of a siesta. True, we don’t want to be entirely supine when we go away. It would be wrong, for example, to pass by an important Roman ruin and leave all those lovely frescoes and mosaics unseen, if they’re just a brisk walk away. And when, in the Maldives, there’s a beautiful house reef at hand, I’ll gladly snorkel over it – and marvel at the coral and the turtles and the angelfish. A certain amount of endeavour is good for us, between a hearty breakfast and an even better lunch – one enjoyed with wine, because, well, we’re on holiday, aren’t we? After which a successful afternoon can be measured by what we don’t do. Don’t do yoga on the beach. Don’t learn to kitesurf. Don’t check work emails. Don’t embrace the local culture on a “village safari”. Don’t go foraging with the hotel chef. Instead, sleep. And that doesn’t mean a brief moment spent snoozing on a lounger, fine though that may be. Close the shutters, draw the curtains and go to bed – and write off a good hour or two. And then wake up with that delicious confusion… What time is it? Where am I? The time, for once, doesn’t matter. And where you are... is on holiday.

The Morning Dip
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No 3: The Morning Dip

The Pleasure Principle · Issue 9 - 2018

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