Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Italians in Thailand/5: a very bizarre prostitution story - Pattaya, Thailand

A picture I saw at a guest house in Hua Hin
I've recently happened to hear a really bizarre prostitution story. Just when I was about to leave Pattaya, the biggest mine of tales of this type, that in the various months spent there has revealed to me so many, so diverse and so colorful an anecdote that I came to think it would be nearly impossible to surprise me again. Nonetheless, I have to admit that I'd never heard a story like this before.

One day the anonymous protagonist of this story, an elderly Italian whoremonger that we'll call AW - the initials of Anonymous Whoremonger - gets out of his hotel to look for what the tourists of the category he belongs to often go out to look for when they are in places like this. It's not a peaceful quest though, as most of us might think. It's not just a matter of setting out for a short walk, bump into the first of the thousands of opportunities offered by the city and getting over with it. Nothing of the sort: AP is tortured by doubts, he's doing his utmost to get a totally satisfying idea. Going to talk with one of the mama-sans that he is acquainted with? Tedious procedures, useless rituals to go through, elaborate supply chain, numerous wheels to grease, negotiations to weave, all of it very expensive and complicated. The Beach Road free-lance hookers? No way, so many creepy stories about them! Too risky. The Soi Honey erotic massage parlors? Hmmm, lousy massages in dingy hovels that end up in hurried intercourses with bored women. That solution won't do either. He needs to do something original He has to improvise, making good use of the current situation and context, adding a bit of imagination and, why not, boldness. A bunny girl pulled out of the magician's hat, so to speak.

In the meanwhile he's walking back and forth on a sidewalk, near a crossing: he's just a few meters away from his hotel. A few workers have just finished their shift at a building site nearby. There are some women among them. Some of them walk chatting and smiling away from AW, but one advances right toward him. When she's walking besides him he smiles at her, not knowing exactly what to expect. The girl, who's wearing overalls, a helmet and a pair of rubber boots, smiles back: it's the signal AW was hoping for! He opens his arms, yells "nice lady!" and a few other sentences that he manages to put together with his broken English. He smiles broadly. They have a brief conversation, mainly made of gestures and monosyllables. The girl doesn't leave outraged as most of us might expect but takes him back to her place, a simple studio apartment a few meters away. They have a sexual intercourse that leaves AW fully satisfied. According to him she also had plenty of fun. Before leaving AW gives her a tip, stacking note after note on her hand until she happily smiles. He claims that it was a very good deal. Obviously she will be thinking exactly the same thing.

We listen amazed, vaguely outraged and embarrassingly amused. Opportunity makes a thief. And a few hookers as well, we might say. Then we get hold of ourselves. It might be sad, it certainly isn't the world priests, TV ads, silly American comedies or Japanese cartoons told us about, but if nobody else interfered, took advantage of, compelled, if they are happy with it, both of them I mean, who are we to judge? 
Well, come to think about it a little judging can't be that bad, come on...YOU DEPRAVED LITTLE FILTHY PEOPLE! Alright, alright...now it feels a little better.

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