Tuesday, 26 June 2007

I walked through Soho

I walked through Soho. The Christmas lights gave me a warm feeling in my heart, reminded me of home once upon a time. I didn’t like the crowds, consumers gone crazy feeding some hunger they didn’t even know they had.

This is insanity, I thought, these are the symptoms of empty souls.

But I had a hunger of my own. Women looked good here; on the trains, on the buses, walking around. Pretty, sexy, beautiful people. Happy people, people with homes, and families, and meaning in their lives. I felt like a phantom, a ghost trapped in a world of the real. Like any minute I might blink and it would all be gone. I was lacking completeness too, but I was on the hunt for something else, something to feed my injured spirit. I needed the kind of healing only a woman could give me.

I stole through the alleys into the sex zone. It was dark now. I felt like a tomcat. A girl in cowboy boots and Italian accent called to me from the entrance to a strip bar across the street. I went over.

‘You want to come in see girls naked?’ she asked me. I saw a cruel sheen in her eyes. I saw a lie.
‘How much?’ I asked, already knowing the answer.
‘5 pounds’ she said.
‘Yea right! then another 100 to get out again.’ I said. I wanted her to know I had caught her ruse, I wanted her to feel shame.
She scoffed and turned away from me. Maybe she thought I was a Jesus freak or something. I knew these places, knew how they worked. I had nearly worked here myself once; T. She used to play tricks round Soho and Brixton, offered me work fucking her on a table in front of business men for four hours a day. I would get £100, but I would have to keep it going for an hour. I turned her down, though I was desperate and unemployed at the time. I didn’t think I had the stamina, and besides, I am no hedonist, a little decadent maybe, but I liked my sex private. I find it too personal to share. Cowgirl started hissing like a snake, so I moved on.

Up past The Raymond Review Bar and out into Berwick Street. Cons, cons, cons, everywhere. They all want your money, and just tease you in return. What better way to create a nation of rapists? I saw the red lights up in the rooms and walked to one at the far end then went in. I didn’t care who saw me. The street market stalls were just packing up, I heard a trader shout;
‘Go on my son!’
I assumed it was directed at me, but I ignored it and jumped up the stairs two at a time. The first door I came to I knocked on. It said ‘Busty Model’. A haggard Persian with no breasts and jet-black hair answered.
‘Sorry, I was looking for a blonde,’ I lied.
She slammed the door with a bang.

I went to the top floor, this time a brunette answered. I used the same line, she looked worn out and moody. I got the same treatment.
I left out into the street, and went to the next.
Again they seemed worn out, lifeless, hardened. I couldn’t blame them, and wondered what it was doing to me. I tried the one at the top and a Malaysian girl answered. She was good looking but she wasn’t my type. I said I was looking for a blonde, but really I guess I was just looking for Heaven in Hell. The ‘cleaner’ came out from behind her;
‘It says fucking Malaysian down the stairs cant you bloody read!’ she shouted at me. There was something wrong with her. I guess she didn’t like her job. I pointed to the sign on the door. It read: Beautiful Model Nadine.
‘Doesn’t say anything about Malaysians.’ I said, but wondered why I was arguing.
‘The sign down stairs you fucking idiot!’ She was moving towards me. I turned and bolted.

It took two more doors then I found it. It was in Lucy. Some sparkle in the eyes, some look of quiet strength and acceptance. It never fails to fascinate me how much we read about people in an instant. Most of it we try to dismiss, surely people aren’t telepathic, and yet...and yet. You know things about them. You can almost taste it, as everything they are presents itself to you all at once.

I felt my heart leap, this was the doorway in. I stepped into sin, into crime, into low life ways and self-disgust, secrets and unholy ground, but a church of some kind. I was one of the lost sheep; I couldn’t find salvation in God, nor shopping, nor home, nor love. I was at the bottom, just a gutter-rat looking for a break from the pain of a trashcan existence. I’d go anywhere, do anything to find it. Death was stalking me, and knowing that made the rules altogether different. This wasn’t illegal, but it wasn’t something you could tell your mother, or wife, about either. Yet here it existed, supply meeting demand. Why? Just because. To me, this was holy ground to be revered and respected. This was the sickness of a dark side of man brought to life, and yet to me it was also the shrine of the Goddess. I came here to pray, to release my hurts before a female altar. I had nowhere else I could go to do it.

I stepped into her room, she had long brown hair with flicks of gold that shone in the light. She had lazy eyes and a calm gait. She could have been a model with those legs and ass, but maybe became another victim of the Russian sex slave trade instead, I didn’t know, and didn’t ask. In my selfish hunt for healing, the truth was, I didn’t much care. I gave Lucy £20, then undressed, and let some sinful magic work upon my soul in an alchemy that was free of love, or emotion, or any ingredient other than deep, dark, potent and pure pleasure mixed with the pain of being alive, and a deep, deep wish for some kind of freedom from all of this.

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