The place where she works, on the 8th floor of a modern apartment block at the edge of the city centre, looks a bit like a student house: 5 or 6 girls are watching TV in the communal room, and from time to time one gets up to go to her own room. With a client, not a boyfriend, maybe that is the biggest difference. According to the website I found her on, Nikola is 171-175 cm, her age is 18-21 and she has 3 breasts (!?). In reality she is 21, blond, cheerful, healthy (‘I don’t smoke and never drink. Well, only very sweet wine’), and as far as I can tell she has only 2 breasts. And she is a student.
What do you study?
‘It’s a secret.’
But you will tell me, right?
‘Something like a nutrition nurse.’
When will you be finished?
‘You mean when will I be an engineer? In 2 years.’
Her English is quite good.
‘I would have liked to improve it in some nice foreign country, but I didn’t have the money.’
Now you probably make enough money to travel, I guess.
‘Yes, I do,’ she says a bit guiltily. In the room next door three or four girls are laughing at a TV-show, at our door a Chihuahua – Nicola’s dog – is wimpering.
When did you start this job?
‘In March. Or April. Don’t remember.’
How are the clients?
‘Some good, some bad. 50-50. Maybe 60-40.’
I have heard that here in Slovakia it’s not unusual to be a sex worker. Like in the Netherlands, my country.
‘Really?’ Nicola says.
Well, in Amsterdam there is a Red Light District, and the girls working there are out in the open.
‘Yes, but aren’t those girls foreign?’
She is well informed.
‘Yes, you’re right… Dutch girls work in places likes these, in private homes, not in the RLD. You could work there though.’
‘Well maybe… I would like to go and live abroad, but first I have to save money to pay off some debts. Insurance stuff. And before I go abroad I need some surgery.’
‘I wear contact lenses now and it’s too complicated to find them abroad, so I would like to have my eyes fixed. I have minus 5,‘ she adds., which is not that bad – my eyes are worse.
Where do you want to go to?
‘England. And to America. But it is in the distant future…’ she sighs. ‘Maybe a year’
Why this job?
‘I needed the money. And as I am still studying, I can’t work just any job: I need to be able to combine the two. Before I had two lovers, paying things for me. But all of a sudden it stopped.’
How did you end up here?
‘One of my friends, well someone I know, she did this job one month, also because of money. She told me about it and I googled it.’
And how is it? Is the boss okay?
‘We are all bosses, all 6 girls,’ she says.
Do your friends know you have this job?
‘Noooooo,’ she laughs. ‘Nooooo. My sister suspects something. She knew about the lovers, so…’
Is it okay that it is taboo?
‘I think people are not open-minded. And I guess they have never been in a situation they didn’t have money to buy food. The week before I started this the only food I could afford was rice. I was desperate. To be honest, before I also assumed that girls took the job because they needed money to buy shoes and clothes, and it’s not always like that. Some have children, no university degree and not a lot of options.’
Did you vote?
‘No. I don’t know about politics, so I’d rather not vote.’
Is it good that Slovakia joined the EU?
‘It depends… With this EU, when you have a problem, other countries can help you. But when the other countries have a problem, you have to help them. And our country is in a relatively good state, so the chance of having to help the another country is more than 50%. So maybe not…’
Maybe when we cooperate, all countries will become stronger.
‘Yes, maybe so, but I think that most politicians are selfish and are working only for themselves. Politicians should have a love of helping others.’
‘Yes!’ she laughs. ‘And doctors. To repair holes in the society.’
What about the Ukraine. Is it frightening?
‘It’s a problem for everybody. If there is a war, we will certainly be the first to be involved, but I guess then the whole world will be…’