Writer, opera singer, film director and producer

When you're in Italy and you see an undertaker or a nun

When you're in Italy and you see an undertaker or a nun

Walking the streets of Florence with my friend, Avio

“When you are in Italy, and you see an undertaker or a nun,” says Avio to me suddenly one morning, while we are walking towards our favourite morning caffé in Florence, and we had just passed a nun dressed in traditional habit, “… you must cover your testicles,” and he covers his testicles immediately with his cupped hands.

He looks at me and waits.

“When you see an undertaker or a nun,” he repeats, “you have these bad feelings. They give you these bad feelings. You do not want to die. Especially women. When an Italian woman see an undertaker or a nun, she quickly whispers to her man, ‘Toccati le palle!’ to her husband, her father, her son – or a stranger, any man will do – and he covers them, and she is safe.”

I cup my hands, and he nods.


Posted: Wednesday 31 August 2022


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