30 October 2005

Vague and Sloppy

I saw this article somewhere on the Internet. I didn't find it myself, actually, someone on a discussion site gave the link, probably. It was about technology and the future, and had some sort of political or philosophical implications.

The article seemed so clear and made perfect sense, I was nodding my head in agreement with everything that was written there. "Wow, I'll have to be sure to comment about this on my weblog," I said to myself.

It was kind of long, though, so I saved a copy to my machine with the intention of finishing it later, but it had some obscure filename that I've forgotten.

But anyway, back at the discussion site a lot of intelligent people refuted most of what the article said, so now I'm not so sure whether my original opinion was right anyways.

05 October 2005

21 in November

She is "21 in November" as she keeps insisting. Uzbek, from Osh in the south of the country. She looks Kyrgyz, to me - asian eyes, thin, small tight body, round face. Kind and sweet young woman, happy to chat while we have beers and smoke. Wearing tight black jeans and a neon orange sleeveless sports top, with matching hoody. Very cute. Big, firm, proud tits - not particularly common in these parts.

Picked her up under the overpass near Mos-Soviet, downtown, took her home.

The cab driver turned out to be a bit of a prick on the way back - talking dirty to her in Kyrgyz, making her a bit uncomfortable... then to me, in Russian, suggesting he'd have her after I was done. Real gentleman. Eventually politley asked him to shut up, and he did.

Translation by your humble correspondent, from the original Russian.

MB: Ok, so... you got here [to Bishkek] in May... This was your first concept... this kind of work, you from the start planned to work like this? Or what?
GULYA: I came to Bishkek, in May, and now I work like this.
MB: Yeah, but when did you start, how did you decide to get into this business, what happenned?
GULYA: When I first came here I wanted to study, but I didn't get in [to university].
MB: What did you want to study? Economics? Business?
GULYA: Yeah, but I didn't pass the entrance exams. Later, I thought about working, needing to find some money and work.
MB: So, how long have you been a prostitute?
GULYA: Not long, just a month.
MB: Ah, OK, so what about before then?
GULYA: When I first came, I was in a cafe. They paid me enough to live on, but then there was a problem. I needed money.
MB: What kind of problem?
GULYA: At home, there wasn't enough money.
MB: Your parents needed money?
GULYA: Yes, and one of my friends suggested to me...
MB: What kind of problem at home? What did they need money for?
GULYA: My mom got really sick.
MB: Cancer?
GULYA: A problem with her heart. Blood pressure too high.
MB: And what, did they write a letter telling you they needed money, or what?
GULYA: They phoned. And said, if there's some way you could send some money, we really need it. Mom was in the hospital. So I sent some, just a little, but then next month they asked again. And I didn't have any to give. Then, a friend told me... about this kind of work, I was surprised because I had no idea she worked like this...
MB: Really?
GULYA: Yeah, she said she worked in a cafe.
MB: It seems like lots of girls from Issyk Kul and Naryn come to Bishkek and end up working like this.
GULYA: I was always asking her, 'why don't I come meet you at your cafe?', and she never did invite me, kept putting it off. (laughter) But then, when my problem came up, she told me honestly about her work, and that I could get work like this.
MB: So, is the pay really so excellent, better than in a cafe? What can you make in a night?
GULYA: I get half, and she [the 'mama'] gets half.
MB: So, I paid 1000som, you get 500 [~US$12]?
GULYA: Yeah. And she takes the money, holds it for me, and then [misunderstood]
MB: I am not sure I understand exactly.
GULYA: I first sent the money, my 'mama' gave me a large sum to send to my family.
MB: Ahh, you have a loan, a debt with the 'mama'?
GULYA: Yes, and now I am working off the debt.
MB: How much is your debt?
GULYA: Just a little now, I am working it off. I borrowed a lot, but once I am paid off I can stop. Go back to working in a cafe.
MB: Interesting. And could you tell me, more or less, how many different customers have you had as a prostitute?
GULYA: What, in a day?
MB: No, overall.
GULYA: I don't know.
MB: 20? 100? More or less.
GULYA: I don't know.
MB: More than a hundred?
GULYA: Oh, likely, sure.
MB: Is it good work? Do you like it?
MB: What's the worst thing about this work?
GULYA: There are different clients.
MB: What kinds? Tell me.
GULYA: Well, some that want to take you back home, say that it's just them alone, and when you get there there is a friend.
MB: Ah, and then they all want you...
GULYA: And sometimes the ride is really far...
MB: But the ride doesn't matter so much, if the client is OK.
GULYA: Yeah, but if not then you are way out somewhere, not safe...
MB: What was the worst moment you've had in this job.
GULYA: All kinds of stuff. Swearing angry men, getting beaten.
MB: Beaten?
GULYA: Sure. And like I was saying, those situations where there is more than one guy... I say 'You only said one, only paid for yourself, and they say 'You whore, you got your money, what difference does it make to you?'
MB: Of course it's a difference! More work, you aren't getting fair money.
GULYA: There was once a situation, in...in June. At our hotel...
MB: You've got a hotel for short time customers, yeah?
GULYA: You can pay for an hour, two... or also some stay all night. They hired three women, four guys, to the hotel, to the morning. One guy said, I'll just sit and later go home.
MB: Mm hmm.
GULYA: But then later he got very drunk, turned the music up really loud, this was about 4am. I told him people were sleeping and we'd be in trouble, and he just kept swearing at me, calling me a dirty whore.
MB: Nice.
GULYA: And I kept trying to explain, normal people are sleeping here, you'll get us in a lot of trouble. And he took his beer bottle and smashed me in the head, here [shows light scar at temple].
MB: Holy shit! He smashed you in the head with a beer bottle?!
GULYA: Yeah. I passed out, fell on the floor. I didn't remember anything, woke up in the hospital after getting stitches. Had to ask my friend, 'what happenned?'
MB: Wow. How many stitches?
GULYA: It was a really big ugly scar. Afterwards I got plastic surgery on it, they sewed it back up really carefully so now it isn't so noticeable...
MB: Oi. Must have hurt, eh?
GULYA: Yeah, I had two black eyes, bruises all over my face. Concussion. 25 days i was lying in the hospital.
MB: Christ.
GULYA: When I stood up I couldn't balance, had to lie back in the bed.
MB: Bad concussion.
GULYA: But they [the clients] paid for the hospital, if they hadn't I would have been in trouble, I didn't have enough money for the hospital stay, and the plastic surgery. And he said 'Sorry, I was drunk, excuse me.'
MB: So, what would you like to do, what plans do you have?
GULYA: I'd like to go back to school, a person needs an education in life.