During my travels in Asia, I met once an interesting woman when I stayed at the Four seasons hotel. She was apparently a regular in their hotel bar, and so was I that particular week.
As I entered the bar I noticed it was fully seated. I was on my own and wanted to have my usual afternoon drink: Apperol Spritz. I asked the waiter if there were any seats available but instead out of the blue a woman who was sitting alone around a table for four said “You can sit with me”.
She was drinking vodka on the rocks and had smoked probably half of her packet of cigarettes in one sitting. I thanked her for offering and sat down.
We started talking and she was very lovely. Not only that, but she was actually quite interesting. Sometimes it happens that you click immediately with a person and can open up to him or her pretty much straight away.
So we spoke about life. About men. About tears and sorrows and so on. We had drinks after drinks, smoked way too many cigarettes. I asked her why she was drinking vodka on the rocks at 3pm on a monday, she answered because she had to go home and deal with her 7 year old daughter afterwards. – You don’t have a nanny? I questioned her.
– Yes, but it’s not enough darling.
She then turned around to the waiter and asked him about her vodka on the rocks she had ordered 15 minutes ago.
– Madam, it’s in front of you, he politely answered and took a step back.
She looked at an empty glass and started laughing. – Ha ha, did I finish it already? I didn’t even notice…
We exchanged numbers and stayed in touch for the remaining days I was visiting. Frankly, I don’t know what it was that made us connect, but I felt a sad energy in her that I couldn’t let go off.
If I would to try and describe her, I would say she was a typical socialite woman in her early 40’s. Beutiful and very elegantly dressed. I still keep seeing her in many magazines on the events pages of all the galas and charitys she attends in Asia. I remember one time we spoke on the phone after an event she had been to and she started telling me how she hated all of it.
I got surprised, because I couldn’t understand why someone who seem to have event-attending almost as her full-time job, hated it so much? Why else would she do it?
In her words she said: “Sometimes you just gotta do it for many reasons. It’s all about keeping an appearance. A mask. It’s all so fake but all so necessary in this world. I just take a few Xanax before, a vodka and then I’m fine. But do I enjoy it? No, not really…”
In a way it felt a bit cliché, almost like in a movie. “The poor rich woman who’s life seems so perfect is in reality totally miserable”. But then I realised, that in this world we have everything; We have the happy jet-setters, but we also have the sad ones. There is no rule that every Jetset Babe live a happy and fulfilling life, neither does it apply that everyone in this world is just keeping a facade, they are pretending it’s all so perfect when in reality it’s not.
One thing we should keep in mind, that the jet-set world has a different social code from the “real world” in terms of what’s acceptable, what’s not, how one should be etc. There are many unwritten rules and pressure around, which makes people who are not mentally fit take on a destructive approach.
The world of socialites is not all glitz and glam, but instead a lot of politics and gossiping. I think many people don’t feel comfortable being themselves in this environment, and that’s what my new friend was referring to that she always had to wear a mask.
People need to act fake because of politics. Although going on social events is considered a fun thing, it’s all about business, networking or raising your status by climbing the social ladder. Basically to go there and to be seen. To show off yourself and what you have accomplished.
Imagine having this is as a big part of your life, it will become stressful. Almost like an obsessing game.
But a lot of people still do it. Because they have to (pressure from the spouse or family for example) or because they tried it out once and got addicted to the kicks of what the “social climbing game” gives you. (Let’s not get in to the psychological effect of it).
I guess after getting to know Mrs. X, made me really understand that the creme de la creme world of socialites (you can’t go higher than this status wise in the jet-set world) as glitzy as it seems, is tough as hell! Question is, is it really worth it? For what? What does one get out of it? There is no real prize once you reach the top, so why bother? It’s all a game similar to Farmville or Candy crush, in reality you just waste your time on something that makes you addicted.
Would you want to become a socialite and join their exclusive society?