If there were a non charitable cause that I would support, without a doubt, it would be LeMonde. It is obvious that my life would not be the same without LeMonde and I hope I will always have access to it, no matter where I live.
I was informed of the rumors of its bankruptcy and identified myself with the support by very wealthy Frenchmen, who came to the rescue of the bastion of French journalism and culture. It would be a crime for LeMonde to cease.
The only way I can be considered to be a patron of LeMonde is by subscribing to its hard copy, at the price of gold in the UAE. In the summer, my father gets a summer deal, delivered at its cheapest rate: in France naturally. I am not a patron of LeMonde the way the Hahnloser couple were patrons of art.
The Fondation Hermitage in Lausanne's program this summer is the Hahnloser collection (which resides permanently in an obscure Winterthur (even I wouldn't venture that far for art, it sounds like the Kingdom of Ice, Winter...). As I reached the museum, which perches in the hights of Lausanne, with three children in tow, I tried to explain the principle of patronage to children under the age of eleven. "These Swiss collectors have bought the finest artists. Van Gogh and Matisse and Cezanne. Bonnard and Renoir! Now we can see them in museums because they chose to share these beautiful paintings with the public."
My eldest had nagged a bit about accompanying me and his siblings to Lausanne by train to visit the Hermitage Foundation, as he had done the year before. He was fasting for Ramadan and there was no real incentive about a museum visit for Art! There wouldn't even be an ice cream after the tour....
I am glad I insisted. The train trip is pleasant and short, Lausanne is very charming and the collection we saw today was very rich. Of us all, I think he benefited the most.
We walked through the small museum, and to the dismay of the gray haired visitors, I began my own private tour of the works. I asked questions which made the kids observe, remark and notice. We talked about what we saw, what they were doing, what the painters were narrating. The eleven year old made observant remarks, the six year old concentrated on some paintings and the youngest nagged and nagged about going out to the garden to play.