Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Property of a Gentleman

Sir Patrick Leigh Fermor
Still in his early fifties, Ian Fleming nevertheless knew that he had less than five years to live, thanks to all those vodka martinis and specially made Turkish cigarettes.
Having recently visited Japan to research his novel “You Only Live Twice,” Fleming decided to adopt a quasi-Buddhist attitude toward the luxuries Bond had bought.
So he gave his friend Patrick Leigh Fermor a navy blue vicuna overcoat. A BBC journalist once described the travel writer, scholar and soldier Fermor as “a cross between Indiana Jones, James Bond and Graham Greene.”
Years later, when the IRA was regularly bombing London, Fermor was stopped by a police officer while walking. The officer asked for proof of his identity, joking that people frequently liked to claim they were James Bond.
Fermor casually opened his vicuna coat and displayed the label, which read, “Benson, Perry & Whitley, Cork St W1 7.9.1956 Ian Fleming Esq.” The policeman immediately summoned a car to take Fermor home.
Source: “Ian Fleming” by Andrew Lycett


  1. Replies
    1. I was particularly proud of the headline on this one, which only you will get.