As with most things sinful, the beginning was rather innocent. The client, let’s (aptly) call him The Italian, e-mailed me in April. A very short message: do you speak Italian? I told him the truth. I understand Italian and can write reasonably well (with Google translate opened in the next tab) on conversational level but speak – not so much: nowhere to practice in Scotland. Nevertheless, he got back to me asking for a booking at the end of May. I agreed. Little did I know of exactly how much fun I signed up for.
End of May arrived, and so did The Italian. In the morning, when he texted to confirm the afternoon booking, he asked if I have any friends for the 2 friends he came to Edinburgh with, preferably Italian-speaking ones. This idea (entertained by many punters) that all hookers know each other is really irritating. I wanted to reply that sure, I’ll take my friends out of the draw and blow them up, shouldn’t take me more than 15 minutes with a good pump. But language barrier is a pain, so I ended up saying that it’s not my responsibility to arrange his friends’ sex life. Nor is it his. If they want to get laid, the least they could do is try to find someone for it, like he did.
Yet, when I met The Italian, I understood how difficult it must be to find an escort in Edinburgh if you don’t speak or read a word of English. He must have been lucky to come across me. His friends were less fortunate, poor sods. So when the booking was over, I moved from the bed to the desk and The Italian switched on his laptop. This is how for the second time in my life I started looking for a prostitute.
After about half an hour of hard work we short listed three and a half ladies (initially it was 4 but read on) all of whom had Italian as their nationality. Out of these, 3 women did not speak a word of Italian, and the 4th was Spanish and she did speak some Italian, but after a brief conversation with her he hung up the phone.
– It’s a man!
– Don’t be silly, of course it’s a woman!
– Did you hear this voice? (I did, and well, as I said, we short listed 3.5 ladies)
– But she’s Spanish, what do you expect? She can’t help it!
– If it’s not a man, then a transsexual!
I didn’t manage to persuade him to give this lady a chance so we went on with the search. At some point he started looking keenly at me and eventually asked if I’m free this week-end at all. Maybe I could take care of his friends?
For two reasons.
First of all, his friends were Italian. My experience with Italian clients is mixed but mostly unpleasant. Not negative: they have never been violent, abusive or rude to either me or any other sex worker I know of. But the majority of Italian clients IN MY EXPERIENCE seem to be under the impression that sex work isn’t about human interaction. They don’t care much for sharing the pleasure, they don’t want to chat or kiss. All they want is get it over with and get out. While clients like this exist all over the globe, Italy seems to be the only country supplying them TO ME in abundance, and with only 20% of all my Italian clients being human in the bedroom, the trend is easy to notice. It may of course be a cultural difference or a difference in perception, but I have a strong feeling that this is how Italian sex workers operate (willingly or not) so Italian clients follow the rules they are accustomed to.
Secondly, his friends were his friends. While I’m sure that some of the clients I’ve had over the years knew each other, and some of them I even knew for sure to be friends or colleagues, I have never yet had clients who would know when and where I was engaged with their friends. Call me bourgeois (because a moralist I am not by definition) but this feels slutty to me, almost like sleeping with a football team. And I take pride in being a sex worker, not a slut (no offence to sluts. I am sure that a football team can provide a very rewarding experience).
And so, in panic I googled escort agencies in Edinburgh. I never thought I’d call an agency, and it wasn’t the most satisfying experience, but having spoken to 3 receptionists, I had to give up.
My Italian improved enormously during that week-end. The Italian no 2 was a sweetheart of a client while The Italian no 3 was a typical Italian one. I asked no 2 if he’d ever seen a lady of fixed-rate virtue before and no, he hadn’t. Same as my Italian virgin (who hadn’t seen any lady at all). They make up the 20% mentioned above. To sum it up:
- There aren’t enough Italian-speaking escorts in Edinburgh (yep, I enjoyed inserting the link) and
- Educating clients is often overlooked in sex work but is, in fact, very important.