Abeer* sits for a few minutes in a cafe in Jaramana, before being invited to be a guest at another table. She then waits a little before choosing the customer who shows signs of wealth the most – being handsome is a plus. She invites him to her table and then the negotiating process begins. She chooses which services she will provide for a sum of money to be paid in advance.
Abeer, tells Athr Press that she does not work in prostitution, which reduces her chances of getting customers compared to other sex workers. Her profession is limited to being a “date companion,” while accepting that the customer might proceed to sexually caress her. This comes in addition to other customers who wish for “sweet companionship”.
“Customer hunting” does not depend on a sexy dress or exaggerated make-up, like girls who work in prostitution, as the girl asserts that she has two veiled friends who work in the same profession, which is based on “beauty”. The customer is often one of the people who like to brag about accompanying beautiful girls and no more. At the end of the day, Abeer earns 50,000 Syrian pounds as a daily wage for the period of accompanying her client, which may last for about 10 hours.
Pampering is the key
Sawsan* reveals that practicing this profession has increased her income significantly because she practices “pampering” on her client. She may ask him to take her to a bar or a nightclub, where she can take advantage of his drunkenness and start trying to extort money from him, with or without his knowledge.
The girl, who graduated from university three years ago and remains unemployed, says that she relies on reaching the second or third day when she can start accompanying her customer to the market. There, she can ask him to buy gifts for her, in the form of “perfumes or accessories.” The gifts may be resold or returned to the same shop hours after purchase, which provides an additional income on top of her daily wage. The more the customer becomes attached to the girl, the greater her opportunities become for making money.
We take tips
Maysam*, who travels from a town in the southwestern Damascus countryside every day to go to Jaramana’s cafés, says that her parents believe she is working in a medical laboratory based on her qualifications. The first time that she was accompanied by someone she did not know before was scary, but she became used to it. She earns money and convinces her parents that she “sleeps at her friend’s house” when she is invited to a bar or a restaurant. At the end of the evening, she will receive a good amount of money.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.