Are the Grand Slams set in stone?
Balancing the importance of history with the demands of the future - tradition with progress - is one of the great challenges in tennis. The sport may have moved with the times with big changes to racquets, surfaces and scoring systems, but essentially the game remains true to tradition.
Wimbledon dates back to 1877 (remarkably soon after the invention of the sport, when you think about it) and the Championships of the United States began in 1881. A French Championships began in 1891, allowing international competitors from 1925, while the Australian Championships started in 1905.
The venues have changed (from Worpole Road, Forest Hills, Stade Francais and Kooyong), even the cities have changed - the US event began in Newport, Rhode Island, and the Aussie Open moved from Adelaide to Brisbane before settling in Melbourne - yet the countries have remained constant.
Australia, France, Great Britain and the United States: The hosts of major tennis, the big players, the keepers of tradition.
But will it always be this way? Will there always be four Grand Slam tournaments? And will they always be in the same places?
Having just spent the week in the United Arab Emirates at the Barclays Dubai Tennis Championships, and heard about ambitious plans for expansion, one wonders whether the 'New Tennis World', for want of a better expression, will play a more prominent role in the future.
"There is a lot of money being spent in Asia between three countries," says Salah Tahlak, the Dubai tournament director. "I would say China, UAE and Qatar. A lot of big money."
The Dubai event will be moving from The Aviation Club to a new venue in 2012
That is certainly true. The China Open is doing well in Beijing while Shanghai will host a Masters 1000 event in October. The Qatar Open in Doha kicks off the season and the end-of-season WTA Championships are staged at the same venue.
The grandly titled World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi would like to think it has a future as more than an exhibition, while new kids on the block Kuala Lumpur entered top-flight tennis in 2009 which the launch of the Malaysian Open at a 16,000 capacity stadium.
Perhaps a little intimidated by this massive investment from Asia, the Australian Open has definitely been looking over its shoulder in recent years.
A few years back it rebranded as the "Grand Slam of Asia and the Pacific" and this year it released ambitious plans to redevelop the grounds at Melbourne Park, including a third retractable roof.
But really it has nothing to worry about.
"Grand Slam" is a registered trademark jointly owned by the Australian Open, French Open, US Open and Wimbledon. The only contracts are between national federations and venues - such as the deal between Tennis Australia and Melbourne Park, which expires in 2016.
Technically, Tennis Australia could franchise out the Australian Championship and hold it in China, but imagine breaking that news to folk down by the Yarra.
While the trademark exists and the venues still come up to scratch, there will be no change, but at tour level the situation is a completely different.
Both the ATP and the WTA appear to have actively encouraged expansion in the Far and Middle East, setting up international divisions to capitalise on the growth, and some tournaments clearly have their eyes on more high-profile slots in the calendar.
The Dubai event, which beganin 1993, is keen to be at the heart of this uprising. Having outgrown its home at The Aviation Club, the tournament is moving to a 15,000-seater stadium, complete with retractable roof, with completion expected in 2012.
Around 20 minutes up towards the beach is the planned Dubai Sports City complex, which also includes purpose-built football and cricket stadiums, although building work appears to be on the slow side, according to locals.
So what's the aim? A Masters 1000 tournament for the Emirate? Not necessarily.
"I think when we move we will have to settle down and examine ourselves," says Colm McCloughlin, managing director of Dubai Duty Free, who has developed the tournament from the start.
"Are we happy with 160,000 or 170,000 spectators? Are we happy with TV coverage iin 400 million homes around the world? Eighteen of the top 20 women players? We're either happy or we're not.
"If we're not happy we have to ask ourselves the question, 'Do we want to become a Masters? Do we want to spend a fortune to acquire one of those tournaments?'
"To get a Masters you actually have to buy the tournament. You have to ask whether it's worth doing that, simply to get the same players, simply to get a little bit more TV coverage?"
McCloughlin knows his successful product in Dubai won't necessarily benefit from an elevation in status (which he believes could cost him US$70-80m) because he gets the big players anyway.
And as for a "Grand Slam of the Middle East", which some believe is inevitable, well it's just not legally possible.
"Not in my lifetime," a Grand Slam spokesman told me.
"Or in yours!"
I take his word for it, he's a lawyer after all, but what about my daughter's lifetime?
I'm not campaigning for change - far from it - simply asking the question: Can anything in sport stay the same for ever?