|Millionaires, in some currencies.|
The value of things is not the same as the cost of things: that is not such a strange idea. Dog and I have returned this morning from a priceless walk- she flushed a deer from a thicket; intense, graceful, precise springs took it across the field before my ‘wow’ had finished forming. And, I have been interrupted from this writing by the crude brrring of our cheap pink plastic house phone, but it turns out pertinent. My mother and stepfather will be arriving tomorrow at lunchtime. Recently Mr came home with a bargain pack of steaks: cost, 89 pence sterling. I foresee steak sandwiches being popular: my mother says, knowing how low the budget is here, not to worry, to keep the rare treat for ourselves. But the value of the pack is greatly increased by sharing, so she is convinced. She understands, and is bringing bread.
To know the value of things, of people, of moments, makes for a happy life. Not such a strange idea. But, does one actually have to be struggling for costs to maintain any spiritual or artistic integrity? This is my glass ceiling. I think I should like to strike it a piercing blow. I think, with a better income, one has the opportunity to do more good in the world. I have a monstrous thought that the role of the true artist is to suffer soulfully for a full lifetime so that the people with the fat salaries and sorrowfully wasted souls can suck up that soulfulness and gain some equilibrium. Which is unfair- I’ve met plenty of rich people, they are as mixed a bunch as any. The buck, regardless of cost or value, stops with me.
I’ve learnt so much from being on the low end of the economic scale, I hesitate to shift, yet one of the best lessons has been to always extend the comfort zone, not to stagnate. So today, metaphorically, one is wobbling on a chair working out how, exactly, to punch out a ceiling and land neatly in a pile of gold.