I teared up, almost as if I’d lost a friend, when I saw that Peter Mayle had passed. After all, he had given me Provence—first on the printed pages of his charming, insightful trilogy—A Year in Provence, Encore Provence, Toujours Provence—and thereafter the engaging, lighthearted novels he set there, irresistible confections all. Hotel Pastis and A Good Year were my personal favorites.
When we traveled in Provence, I confess to looking for Peter Mayle on the cobbled streets of Menerbes and Lourmarin and Gordes. There were no sightings, but I have seen many online comments from folks who did run into him there, and found him ever gracious and engaging. I hoped they thanked him for all the pleasure his pen provided; I surely would have.
If you haven’t read A Year in Provence, please do, then watch the British TV adaptation with the great John Thaw, whom you might know as the original Inspector Morse, as Peter, and Lindsay Duncan as his wife.