Wednesday, December 21, 2022

Holiday Cheers Within The World of the Rich!

From inside the walls of my gilded prison I just wanted to send holiday greetings to all who have followed this blog for so many years. I know I've not been writing much lately, but you have to admit it's been a rough year:

No one, rich or poor, has been immune to the droughts and climate-change disasters from one end of the country to the other. Even as I'm writing this evening we're facing another "unprecedented" and potentially destructive Arctic blast right here before Christmas day.

To the shock of a nation and the whole world we've witnessed women's rights being stripped away before our very eyes by an over zealous Supreme Court.  

With a lack of sensible gun control there's been multiple disastrous shootings all over the place that hurt our souls and shocked us to our roots!

There's Putin's bizarre and on-going war in Ukraine with his continual threat of using nuclear weapons.  

Queen Elizabeth II, who has been on the throne throughout most of our lifetimes, died. Which distracted us for weeks.

We've been facing high gasoline prices and inflation that's hurting everyone, the poor most of all of course, as usual. 

There's been the almost constant distraction of our former president's legal problems.

And then we've had the bruising mid-term elections that crushed right up against the holidays, making the season a little less festive - depending on which side of the fence you're on, I suppose.

But there's always room for hope. Gasoline prices have dropped dramatically, inflation is showing signs of easing, and the recent agreements among the United Nations Climate Change Conference (referred to as COP27) gives more reason for hope!

So with all sincerity I will say Happy Holidays and all best wishes for a Happy New Year! 

Cheers, and as always, thank you so much for reading,


Tuesday, December 21, 2021

A Billionaire's Christmas 2021

Well, well. Here we are at Christmastime again and it seems like we're in the same place we were two years ago. In 2020 Covid 19 first hit the scene and the whole world just shut down overnight. Airports were closed, schools and businesses closed, sports and entertainment events were shut down, and we were all quarantined in our apartments and homes all over the world. Shortages appeared everywhere - no milk, eggs, or canned goods in the supermarkets, and tissues, paper towels and toilet paper entirely disappeared.

In time we got new directives about hand washing, social distancing and wearing masks, and we slowly began to crawl out from that nightmare. Vaccines were put on the fast track and by the end of 2020 we began to get our first doses of life saving drugs. Long lines everywhere all over the world, but we did it and things began to slowly open up again and we struggled to get back to normal.

Then along came the Delta variant which brought a set back. But since we had learned so much and because so many of us had gotten vaccinated already, it didn't hit us anywhere near as badly as the first go round, and we continued along our path to normalcy. So much so that our pent-up desires for shopping created a shortage of products, and the whole maddening business of supply chain issues popped up.

We had planned a huge holiday gala here at the house with caterers, musicians, valet parkers, the whole nine yards to celebrate our liberation from Covid. When I ordered personalized embossed cocktail napkins and bathroom hand towels, the printer told us he couldn't get his hands on paper products. Okay, fine. I'll just buy generic napkins and towels from a party shop and hope that our guests are too boozed up to notice such a trifle. But when I found out that caviar and some important French champagnes were also in short supply, that's when my head practically exploded! What?  

And now this new Omicron variant comes along and threatens a tsunami of infections, hospitalizations and death, especially among those who have not been vaccinated. Once again schools and universities are moving to online classes, Broadway theaters (even Hamilton) have shut down, and sports events all over the world have been cancelled.

Our gala has been cancelled too of course, but not by us, by the caterer themselves. So we didn't lose a deposit there. But how sad and frustrating is that? We still plan to go ahead with a few cocktail parties, but the guest list has been limited to a few responsible adults whom we assume have gotten their vaccines and booster. 

After her bout with pneumonia and Covid last year, Dame Covington is afraid to go anywhere, and who could blame her? The poor old dear has invited me to a Christmas eve brunch to help her decorate her tree. Which is probably what I'll do. Going to my own family is out of the question this year under this new threat, and I do enjoy Dame Covington's company. She has some wonderful heirloom tree ornaments which I'm looking forward to seeing. Not to mention that her eggnog, spiked with a Louis XIII bottle of brandy from Cognac, France (roughly $3,850 a bottle) is to die for!

None of us knows what's about to hit us in the next few months or the coming new year. Nonetheless I do hope you're planning to have some nice holiday celebrations with family and friends, no matter what. Thanks for stopping by tonight. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

And by all means, stay safe!