Tag Archives: Patrick Leigh Fermor

Patrick Leigh Fermor – A Man Of Style and Substance

This picture is from the book by William Stanley Moss which chronicles the abduction of the German general Heinrich Kreipe in Nazi occupied Greek island of Crete.
This picture is from the book by William Stanley Moss which chronicles the abduction of German general Heinrich Kreipe in the then Nazi occupied Greek island of Crete (Paddy is sitting in the centre with Stanley Moss to his left.)

It’s fashionable for humans to think themselves as adventurous, charming, erudite, courageous and gritty. Most of us have some of these qualities in varying degrees and even showcase it from time to time. I myself, at the mercy of caprice, flip my neural architecture every now and then and go out on a limb to do an action or make a decision that is profoundly uncomfortable to my central nervous system. Some of these include activities as silly as my very first venture into a strip club by myself (yes, yes, the silliness of my jitters only magnified after the pleasantness of the encounter) to activities as stupid as to spend ginormous amounts on an education in another continent that probably wouldn’t repay itself anytime in the near-distant future. There you go – the grand total of my risk-taking adventures thus far amounts to no more than a trouser button. The recurring line to exorcise any doubts or misgivings that occur in my head is one by Joseph Conrad: “Facing it, always facing it, that’s the way to get through. Face it.” But at all times and ages, we do get an handful of men and women who not only codify the qualities that I had pointed out, but also succeed in transposing and transforming them. By doing so, not only do they grow in stature, but they make others who read about them grow as well. Patrick Leigh Fermor (or “Paddy”) was one of them, who, after innumerable adventures on foot, in his mind as a writer and historian, and in the battlefield as a patron of espionage and sabotage in Nazi occupied Crete, managed to stay pickled till he was 96. Continue reading Patrick Leigh Fermor – A Man Of Style and Substance

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