I've been reading Patrick Leigh Fermor's Constantinople journey books, A Time of Gifts and (currently) Between the Woods and the Water. The prose is drippingly rich and evocative—best savored in small bites over morning coffee (before the house wakes). The books synthesize the heedless adventure of youth and the zest of maturity. And, in a few miraculous instances, they really give you a glimpse of the vanished world of prewar Europe.
So now I'm stepping further in.
update: ha ha, they're everywhere: