Wednesday, December 15, 2010


By Nick Nicholson

The highlight of Edward Gray’s life occurred on the night of November 20, 1971, when he slept with the twins, Adrianna and Arietta Ferrara, while holidaying in Naples. Edward, a postal worker from Manchester who secretly harboured pretensions of culture, was driving a rented Fiat back to his hotel after attending what he considered to be a somewhat lacklustre performance of Rigoletto at the Teatro di San Carlo. Rain fell in cascading veils over the old city. Edward spotted the girls huddled together in a doorway on a dark street. They had no umbrella so he stopped and offered to drive them home. The twins accepted, thankful for the unexpected kindness. Upon arrival, they invited Edward into their tiny flat where they shared a bottle of Chianti and smoked cigarettes. Then they led him into the bedroom to properly express their gratitude. Unlike most Italian girls, Adrianna and Arietta weren’t especially beautiful, but it didn’t matter. To Edward, they were angels, the rarest of miracles. Compared to that magical night, the subsequent unfolding of Edward’s life was pointedly uneventful. He never married and died 35 years later, at the age of 67, his heart too bored to beat any longer.


© Nick Nicholson 2010. All rights reserved. Content may not be copied or used in whole or in part without written permission from the author.


This is the first part of Nick Nicholson's theme-adventurous, eight-part Travelogue. Subsequent segments will be published here in upcoming months.

Next Travelogue story: New York

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Throughout his life, Nick Nicholson has pursued a variety of creative vocations: music, photography, painting and, in recent years, writing. He lives in Australia.


  1. Really great story - something about it really hits home. In a world where words are being transmitted ever faster, microstories are a great idea. Short but poignant. I'll be reading them regularly, thanks!

  2. Many thanks, sfad, glad you enjoyed this piece!

  3. I like your writing ... the ending seems peculiar, a jolt.

  4. Yes, the ending is meant to be something of a jolt, an unexpected denouement that (hopefully) colours one's reading of the piece. Many thanks for your comments, Liz :-)

  5. "his heart too bored to beat any longer."

    a great line and great finish!