Singaporean men are considerate, generous and yet, stupid.
Such was the conclusion of a former Geylang sex worker, when she revealed her thoughts and feelings about working in Singapore's red light district.
The 36-year-old woman, who is not identified, says she is from Hunan, China, had personally delivered an open letter to Lianhe Wanbao. It was featured on the Chinese evening daily's front page yesterday. The letter was titled: The Men and Women of Geylang.
She observes in her letter that the attractive Geylang streetwalkers attract men's attention, and Singaporean drivers like to pass by Geylang to ogle at the scene. She also notes that while Singaporean men are generally lowly-educated and not very rich, they know how to maintain themselves, are polite and well-mannered.
The woman was dressed simply in a white shirt and shorts, with light makeup and slightly permed hair. She had a calm, quiet manner, and spoke with a gentle tone to the Lianhe Wanbao reporter.
She said she wanted to chronicle her four months working as a sex worker before returning to China. Having spent time here in Singapore, she claims that she had feelings for the country and the letter included her thoughts and reflections as well as her personal experiences in Geylang. She even had thoughts of settling down with a local man, but decided against it because Singaporean men were naive and fell easily for the charms of streetwalkers.
The woman claimed that she turned to vice after she could not find work here. She said she used to own a factory in Hunan, but encountered difficulty after her husband was sentenced to 15 years' jail for corruption in China. She became a taxi driver to support her family, but was involved in an accident and had to pay compensation of about $20,000.
But she had felt ashamed initially about becoming a sex worker. But after her 11-year-old son in China asked if she had found a job, she felt so sad that she decided to cast aside her pride.
In the letter, which took her a week to complete, she penned her thoughts about the men who are her clients.
"No matter how well you treat these streetwalkers, they will always see you as a fool. When you sympathise with them, you will definitely offer them money to support them. But behind your backs, they call you stupid and laugh at how they have just conned you of your money."
Working from 8pm to 7am every day, she would get 7 to 8 customers on a good night, and charged $40 to $50 per session. Customers would give tips occasionally too. In a month she can earn $3,000 to $4,000. But she stressed that she was not proud of how she earned her keep.
She had a word of advise for her clients, who come from all walks of life: "Don't spend all your money in a moment of lust, because you have also worked very hard for it. You are not only hurting your health, but also your wallet. You are also putting your family's harmony at risk."