Monday, October 28, 2013

Exchanges -29/10/2013


I lost her ring.

She was a sex worker who came into the needle exchange early one night, three years ago, wanting to leave it and a few of her belongings there in the booth with me before she started that night.  I told her I'm not responsible for her stuff and that she better come back and get it before my shift ends in the morning.

She never came back, ever.

I can't remember much about what she looked like now except her not being pretty, blond hair I think scruffy, some sores on her face maybe and that annoying generic whiny voice all junkies have. I remember being irritated with her for asking. I remember coming back for my next shift and seeing the ring still there.

Then a week. Then another three, and then finally I took it.  It was equal parts not wanting to see it waiting there anymore and... kinda liking it myself. It was real silver with a simple elegant design on it.

I like to think she just simply forgot it. And maybe she also quit heroine and also street work that night too, and that's why I never saw her again. Allota women go missing doing the sort of work she did around St Kilda, without getting media outpourings for it.

We had a information sharing/report system set up for women to warn each other about unsafe clients to go with, 'Ugly Mugs' is what they called it. When I started that job I read the updates on every shift. I stopped doing that pretty quickly though, except if I had to take down one down myself.

Things in there were pretty grizzly.

Usually I took my rings off when I started work to make it easier if I had to type, I'd leave them on the edge of the desk in the booth, same place where I left that women's ring. It was a tough job.

Some people end up doing some pretty hard things to earn money.




No comments: