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In love in Italy
Tales under the stars – Racconti sotto le stelle


These are the things I like to write about.
Tales; any kind of tale that has happened to me or which my friends have told me.
I have had a difficult period in my life:
My “adventure-misadventure” with a girl whom I would rather not talk about, the bad health of my father, as well as the inconveniences both at the University and in my everyday life.
But now I can tell myself I am happy.

The pleasure of writing, and Valerie, a nice French girl whom I had just met, have helped me to my present state.
I had a strong desire to fill these pages with stories; here, on the terrace of my apartment, the sun on my face, a cigarette, jazz music, and the anticipation of my future meeting with Valerie.
I wanted to spend every evening with the girl I loved.

To walk hand in hand through mountain trails, to get to a slope, tired but happy as the view opens to our curious eyes.
To enjoy the hot air of day and night, guided by the moonlight in the city to a restaurant; hungry.
She was the ideal woman, beautiful, kind, happy and funny.
And in her nature was that little bit of spontaneity and ingenuity that makes every man lose his head.
Love is a beautiful theme to write about and something one cannot live without.
And love itself teaches you how to write.


© Ryan Derfler

My relationship with Valerie had remained only platonic.
I was so satisfied with this new pleasant situation that I was afraid of ruining everything.

One evening I found myself with her.
But this time I thought I should kiss her; the night was coming and I embraced her.

Her breath was sweet and pleasant, and it was there, near the current of the crystal water that my lips touched hers.
She was wonderful.
That moment was wonderful.
The red of the sunset surrounded us and the strong smell of the wood imposed itself on my senses.
Slowly and imperceptibly without announcing itself, the night came, clear and cold.

The landscape of many tents surrounded by pine trees in the field when I was a young boy scout came to my mind.
Unconsciously I was beginning to remember the smell of the numerous stories next to the fire under the freezing, splendid stars.
When I recall these stories, I am overcome with nostalgia and I hope they will be enjoyed by anyone who may read this.

That night Valerie and I made love.

Tales under the stars

© Ryan Derfler

Racconti sotto le stelle / Tales under the stars, a collection of American-style short stories rooted in Italian culture. In some tales I narrate my friendship and adventures with some American students in Perugia. In others you can observe the way of life and thinking found in the South of Italy; where I grew up.

These stories, translated from their original Italian by me, their author, retain the imprint of the Italian-local color that is my life. I wish for you, the reader to hear the way an Italian truly speaks. Behind every manner of speech, there exists an unique culture; a voice which communicates the rhythm of a certain life. For me, my language and culture is southern Italy.

These stories are simply reflections on the life of a man, student, lover, friend, photographer and writer in Italy.

Readers may recognize themselves in these stories; their interests, their friendships, their loves, their little daily problems.