There are certain things about living in the Middle East that a Western woman will never get used to, one of them is the fact that men think they can "buy you." Over the past six months, I have mentally recorded each of these encounters and have even given names to each of my perpetrators. I used to be afraid of these confrontations. Now, each time I am propositioned, it makes me stronger, more defiant, and aware of my surroundings. I am no longer shocked by these men's suggestions. However, I have decided it's time to expose the truth. Here is the catalog of my encounters. I have broken them down into two categories, “One Time Offenders” and “Common Offenders.”
One Time Offenders
Danny Zuko (from Grease):
While walking back to my car at a convenient store, this man proceeded to pull along side of my car. He asked if I "needed a ride." He continued to haggle me by suggesting, "I can take you anywhere you need to go." Even after I got into my vechicle he waited along side of my car. I shoed him out of the way and drove off. Sure buddy! I really need a ride! LAME!
This guy was a real charmer. After I left McDonalds, he had the audacity to ask me, "HOW MUCH?" I must confess, I had already had a long week at work and was not in the mood. This one got a vicious answer and I spurted back repeatedly in a booming voice, "I AM NOT A PROSTITUTE!!!" At least this one apologized. Like he could afford me anyway! Ha!
This scrawny man tried to convince me that I was a princess. "Pick Me" "Pick Me" "Pick ME" he kept saying. Dude! Calm yourself!
This charmer paid for my meal at KFC. I should have known not to accept favors. He gave me his business card and said, "please call me, I am free tonight."
Car Stalker #1:
This past summer my bloody car broke down so I had to walk to and from work. One day, this guy pulled along side of me in his car and asked, "How much?" I didn't respond and kept walking forward. Then he tried a different approach, "Do you need a ride?" I told him to bug off! I had to walk with him pestering me like that for an entire block!
Car Stalker #2:
This time, I was walking to the grocery store to get some milk. FYI, If I am going to walk somewhere by myself, I always take the busiest streets. However, on this day, even the crowded streets didn't keep me from harm. Same type of situation, this guy sees me while driving down the street. He slows his car down and propositioned me. This guy wouldn't give it up so I yelled at him, "LEAVE ME ALONE." Finally, he drove off. The creep was still looking at me from his rear view mirror.
(too many to count)
These guys aren't really taxi drivers. They pull up and ask if I "need a ride." As if?
Are you Russian?:
I have gotten this line a few times. Guys ask me if I'm a Russian hooker. I guess I do have blonde hair and my grandmother was Ukrainian. I can see how they would get confused.
Giggling School Boys:
Here’s a shout out to all of the Pakistani and Indian Men. They see me and start whispering and pointing in my direction. Often I hear giggles as they stare my way. They remind me of little boys. Luckily, these types of men never approach me!
Whistle in the Wind:
These are the type of men who will slow down, roll down their car windows, and whistle at me while I am walking down the street. It even happens at stoplights when I am in the safety of my car. Just the other day, I caught a group of policemen, riding in their work vehicle, smiling, winking, and waving at me. Seriously! What's with these people? It's irritating!
The Truth of the Matter
My friend Jody, AKA Joseph, thinks that someone will one day make a book out of my crazy travel adventures! Who knows? Maybe he's correct! Between my personal life and my travels, I certainly have enough drama to make a best seller!
Now to my friends and family reading this from back home. Please don't worry about me. I don't walk around in mini skirts and I don't show any cleavage (not that I have it anyway). But, you get the picture, I dress modestly. I have learned to fend for myself over here. With everything going on back in "America," I often wonder if I am in a safer location than you guys??!