R.I.P. Patrick Leigh Fermor

I first came across the name Patrick Leigh Fermor in a biography about Bruce Chatwin; he and Robert Byron were his predecessors and influences in travel literature, and they were so neatly described that I immediately ordered old, out-of-print copies of Fermor’s “A Time Of Gifts” and Byron’s “The Road To Oxiana”. These books marked the beginning of a long and happy interest in the writings of people who have grabbed a rucksack and gone off to find adventures in a changing world.

It took me years, however, to get around to ordering the second installment in the planned trilogy, and the third book has yet to come out (although I was happy to read in Fermor’s obituary that a final draft may indeed have been completed, and may actually get published, in my lifetime I would hope…) I can’t be too saddened to hear of his death, at age 96. He lived a long, full and happy life, and cheered many, many people along the way with his delightful stories.

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