They reminded me that it was my fate to pursue only phantoms, creatures whose reality existed to a great extent in my imagination; for there are people - and this had been my case since youth - for whom all the things that have a fixed value, assessable by others, fortune, success, high positions, do not count; what they must have is phantoms. They sacrifice all the rest, devote all their efforts, make everything else subservient to the pursuit of some phantom. But this soon fades away; then they run after another only to return later on to the first.
— In Search of Lost Time
by Marcel Proust