We were watching Federer walk out onto Centre Court yesterday- and someone had just reminded us how he flies everywhere in his own private jet and how his winnings from sport are only a fraction of what he gets from commercial endorsements and all that sort of thing- and for a moment I had a sense of him moving- almost floating- within a wonderful, cushiony bubble of wealth- able to buy anything he wants and never even having to ask the price- and I wondered what that feels like and if- having lived within that bubble for years- he even knows it's there?
One thing it can't do is win him tennis matches, of course...
"The rich are different" That's Fitzgerald, isn't it? Some of them wear their money with grace- and others live in fear. How unpleasant it must be to feel you can only go out if you have bodyguards walking in step with you, protecting the wall of your bubble from the world- or do you simply stop noticing that the bodyguard thing is not the norm?
I suppose that great wealth- like war- is something you can only really understand if you've lived it.