Thanks to Rich from Down the Line! for posting a link to this French article. (Google Translation.) Check Rich’s site for a good translation of the most interesting question about Fed. I’ve often felt that the reason Rafa refuses to say he’s better than Federer is that he needs a goal to chase (beyond titles) and wondered what would happen when that goal was gone. Could some of his recent tennis frustration be related to this? If it is, I feel positive he’ll settle down and realize that his most important competition is himself and as long as he’s improving on that, he has a goal and a more steps to take up that mountain.
Kefuoe’s translation – thanks!
If you were … A place of celebration
My island, Majorca, where I grew up. My ancestors came to settle in the fourteenth century! I’ve always lived there with my family in the house where I was born. My grandparents live in the ground floor. My uncle Toni [coach] is on the second. My parents live in the third. And I share the top floor with my sister, Maria Isabel.
My strength, I cannot always control it. My grandmother watches all my matches on TV with her friends of 80 years. One of them told her: “He hits hard, but with great politeness.”
I love Spanish pop groups like La Oreja de Van Gogh and singers like Alejandro Sanz and Julio Iglesias. Before all my matches, I sit by myself with my iPod. I have a ritual: before playing, I always have to listen to a song from the musical Phantom of the Paradise. [I wonder if this is supposed to be Phantom of the Opera? – Kefuoe.] [I don’t know. There is a movie musical called Phantom of the Paradise, but he has mentioned he likes Phantom of the Opera. – miri]
City of Beasts, Isabel Allende. I am very touched by the commitment of the writer. Since the departure of Pinochet, she returned to Chile and fight for the rights of her people.
A landscape that creates the dream
I was 4 years old when my father put me on a fishing boat to take me to the other side of the island. The land seen from the the sea… There is nothing more beautiful. When I stop playing tennis, I will buy a boat to spend the rest of my days. This will be a motorboat. I love the speed.
A meeting that you hope
Roger Federer. When I was small, I had a dream: I was at the foot of a huge mountain and I looked at the top. When I beat Federer in January, in Melbourne, in the final of the Australian Open, I felt excitement animal. But then I felt an emptiness and a loneliness indescribable, as if I had no other purpose. For me Federer is still the No. 1 in the world. I want to meet again on the court. I know he can beat me.
A word that serves as a motto
Gandhi said: “I do not like the word tolerance, but I can find no better.”
I have taken a passion for a painter of Majorca, Ricard Chiang. He makes very strange paintings, black and silver, of forests, crucifixes, caravels [small sailing ships] …
A revolt [rebellion?]
Success will not change my life. My room is still the same, my friends are guys I met at school, my girlfriend is a friend of my sister. Holidays in Monaco or St. Barth don’t interest me.
A garment that makes it beautiful
I know nothing about the fashion trends, but like all Spaniards and Italians, I choose what I wear. My favorite apparel [gear, get-up]: jeans, a white shirt, a tailored jacket and Santiages [a shoe from Chili is my guess, but I’m not sure].