Image Source – Rolling Stoned NL

I love adventure! No idea where I get that from, because my parents really aren’t thrill seekers. Before I tell you about a very exciting part of my life back home, let me tell you where exactly my beautiful country is.

Though my beautiful country is located in South America, it is part of the Caribbean Community. Our country’s history and that of the Caribbean islands, is the same. We had slaves brought over from Africa, then Asian indentured laborers. I also think some island were colonized by the Dutch and British as well, just like us. Only thing is, the British traded our country to the Dutch. That’s why Suriname is the only country in South America, that speaks Dutch.

I used to think Dutch had to be THE most boring language on the planet. There’s absolutely nothing romantic about the language. My thoughts changed when I arrived here in China. I long to speak Dutch or my lingua franca, Sranan. I met a girl from Belgium last year. Happy to have met someone I could speak Dutch with, I immediately started speaking to her in “our” language. She said, “No, no, here I’m not Dutch, not Belgian, I don’t speak Dutch here.” Still can’t believe she refused to speak Dutch to me. She speaks to me in English, like she was born in an English-speaking-country. In life, you meet all types of people.

Image Source – Suriname Web Quest NL | This is the only map of my country that is valid. The newer versions are inaccurate, because all of this territory is ours, don’t care what Guyana and French Guiana have to say about this

The adventure all started somewhere in 2009. Someone approached me about assisting cultural anthropologists in their work. What kind of work? Going to brothels and talking to the working girls! OH YES! To see a side of life that I normally won’t see, definitely is something that interests me. The only time I’d seen a working girl, was on TV, and I’m not talking about Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman.

The adventurer in me wanted to see a different side of life!

We first went out into the streets, the famous “Red Light Districts” in my country. Yes, there are many. There’s one part of the city that belongs to the homosexuals and transgenders. Most of the ladies I saw there, were from Guyana. In Guyana it’s dangerous to be a homosexual. They assault them violently, they cannot live there in peace. Suriname is kind of like a safe haven for them. Then there’s the other part of town, where the women set up shop. Even encountered a German woman there, I was so surprised!

The adventurer in me loves the “dangerous” side of life! I love to see how others (choose to) spend their days.

We went out after midnight, because that’s when the commercial sex workers come out to play. It is a whole different world! If I hadn’t seen it for myself, I never would’ve believed that type of stuff went on in my little country. To see how night and day can change how people live.

I saw “respected” men spending money on women in brothels. The best thing that happened, was probably when I saw one of my friends’ dad. LOL! The adventurer in me waved to him with a big smile! Once, while interviewing a transgender sex worker, a jilted customer pulled up waiving a gun. He claimed the “little whore” stole his wallet! Married relatives also weren’t an exception.

GumAir Captain Scott Gummels and I

In my next post I will tell you all about my adventures in the interior of Suriname.