Thursday, February 12, 2009

post brothel thoughts.

I am all recovered from our 24 hours brothel trip.

Most of us have probably never been to a brothel. In this case it is basically communal living but really low end - run down, small, smelly, leaky roof, stuffy, old, no private space, etc.

We arrive and meet three of the four working girls. Two are smoking and playing rummy and one is watching Charmed on the fuzzy tv. There is the initial distance and uncertainty. So Rachel and I watch Charmed until our new friend until she fell asleep. We then ventured from the spa side back to the bar in the brothel side and chatted with the owner and his girlfriend. Eventually the girls are ready for some primping. I head to the bathroom to give three haircuts and Rachel does their make up. This was great because it was the perfect time for conversation. The girls had let their guard down at this point. It was interesting to find out where they had come from, a little about their families and how long they had worked in this industry. One of them is in the process of become a sex therapist and figured this would be a good opportunity to do study of this area. While she seemed the most logical and untainted by this field I can't quite see that being the most beneficial form of study. You could tell that she wasn't as concerned with the money or building clientele. My heart breaks for one woman, about 40, who has two grown children but one 12 year old daughter who "stays with friends" back home in Utah. They don't get out much and even if they did there is not much in the little town and nothing for hundreds of miles. They bond with each other, fight each other and compete with each other.

Craig and Sam prepared a great pasta, salad, bread dinner for the ladies, bartenders and owners. We all ate together to the sounds of the juke box. It was good time to just be together and converse like you would with anyone you eat with. After dinner Sam and Craig went to buy the girls the things on their grocery list as well as bring them back gift cards.

The "Line up": When we are about to leave the girls were called to "line up" for a customer. Rachel and I jumped on the opportunity to see how this worked. They change from slippers to heels, lose the robes and reapply lip gloss. They proceed to line up at the bar only to come back and tell us, "He didn't want any of us." In asking her how that made her feel she explained the obvious waste of effort and time and the frustration that comes with that. He ended of proceeding to the spa side with one of the girls after witnessing a fifteen minute yelling match between the owner's girlfriend and the girls over respecting space. It was just as degrading as you might imagine. But this is where we needed to be; loving them right where they are just as Jesus does. I hope they saw not just free food and beauty services but genuine care and love that points to the true love and hope.

We left them with fresh baked cookies and the new Jesus Loves Porn Stars bibles as well. They were so thankful for everything and kept inviting us back. We are already planning the next visit and how we can further love them.
Rachel and I sat at the cafe in our hotel, The historic Hotel Nevada, and debriefed and wrote our thoughts and experiences. When our interesting hotel was built it was the tallest hotel in Nevada at 6 stories! You cannot help but wonder what people do in such an isolated town.

pictures to come..

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