Thursday, January 20, 2011

How it all started

I was 17.. I know,shocking. But it is what it is.

My dream was to be a stewardess (or,more politically correct,flight attendant). Back then in Russia (my country of origin) the screening process for Aeroflot was held about once every 2 months at the Regional Aeroflot Headquarters.

I was just 17 (required age was 18),but I didn't tell interview panel that. I passed the "look-see" and "Q&A" stage and next was medical,which was really most important of them all: if you failed that, no amount of good looks or education would get you the job.

I passed the medical and was able to sweet talk HR person into accepting me,as my 18th birthday was just a few month away. I was so thrilled!

That job is where I've met Nellie-she became my friend and "mentor" in so many ways. She was 10 years older and so much more experienced.

After we've been friends for a few months, she asked me if I've ever had sex for money. The answer was "no" and the next logical question was if I would like to...

To put this into perspective, back then in Russia, your average engineer was making about $100-$120 ROUBLES a month.. Average office worker about $80-$90 roubles a month..

Going rate for a Working Girl was $200 roubles per appointment (which often lasted less than an hour). Surely, you can see how that was so very tempting.

Back then prostitution was illegal in Russia and punishable by jail term, as Communist Government declared that "there is no prostitution in Russia".. Yeah, right..LOL..

As the country was very old fashioned back then, the profession was not at all accepted by society at large and frowned upon by most. Add to that the fact that Internet and cellphones were non-existent  and you can see how it was all hush-hush, very secretive, word-of-the-mouth only and only from trusted friends/associates.

The way it was done, one working girl would "recruit" a friend,as only really wealthy people could afford the services-usually members of The Communist Party, high-powered officials,etc. and it had to be kept a secret,for all everyone's benefit.

They would send chauffeured government cars to pick us up discreetly, or we'll meet them at designated location ("safe house" of sorts) and a very nice dinner will ensue, at the end of which all the couples will adjourn into the bedrooms to "do the deed". The "deed" itself never took long,not really.

Very often we would be given presents as well as cash: french perfume (much coveted in Russia back then,as it was NOT sold in the stores-black market only and it cost accordingly),chocolates etc.

We would be driven home (or wherever we wanted to be dropped off) afterwards.

It was all kind of exciting and thrilling: the whole secrecy bit, the vast amounts of money. Yes, it was unpleasant and outright disgusting at times, but even as a youngster, I had a very realistic,if not jaded outlook on life and knew that there is no such thing as "free lunch": if you wanted to have nice things and make a lot of money and,most importantly, BE INDEPENDENT, in a world where males dominated the workforce and women were nothing more than a pretty "backdrop" and bearers of children, you had to find the way to use this mindset to your advantage,as fighting it would prove fruitless and frustrating.

I honed that ability over the years and, I have to be honest, have not regretted going down that path.

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