Thursday, 11 May 2017

Not Sleeping With a French Hooker at 14




In Ninth Grade at the Jésuites, a group of schoolmates and I went to France for a couple of weeks part of a student-exchange program. Being an all-boys school, most went to stay at boys’ homes, who in turn came to visit Egypt a few months afterwards. Among the 25-30 boys, there were only five who exchanged with girls including myself. 

We were also accompanied by several Egyptian girls from the Sacré-Cœur.

As the son of a General Manager I was living in a five-star hotel, had a younger sister who went to the Lycée Francais, spoke good French — so does my entire liberal family — and have travelled abroad numerous times before, including to France. It is therefore possible that the school have thought that it was convenient that I exchange with a female. 


Despite the fact that my girl, A.L, wasn’t that much fun, the rest of the trip was truly something to remember. Ah, we would laugh ourselves to tears.  

At the time, some cousins were living in Paris. One day I took the permission from whoever was in charge, informing the family I was staying with, and went to spend the weekend with my them. I think it was a Saturday and the guy had four Egyptian friends with him. While I was 14 they were 19, and I just hung around with them and followed their lead. 



At around noon, we first went to some outdoors pub and had a few beer pitchers in the warm sun. We all got buzzed before heading to the subway. They crossed over the metal gate of the entrance without paying like bad boys we see in the movies and I did just the same. Once in the tube, they decided that we’ll go have sex with hookers. What? Without wanting to appear like a novice, I played it cool while trying to know more about that adventure-to-be. 



This was during the school year 1991-92 and I was still a virgin. I had already made out with several girls, but having sex, like full sex, was a different thing. Having sex with a prostitute is even way different than anything I’ve ever fantasised about. You can see how young we were in the featured photos which were captured during the trip.

While still on the subway on the way to Quartier Pigalle, Paris Red Light District, one of the guys was like: “You know what to do, huh? She’s going to give you the condom and you must wear it.” Other than trying one on one of those days in the bathroom, the rest of my experience with condoms had been filling them with water and throwing them on our friends at the Gezira Club. Yet I still smiled, pretending that I got it. By the time we were 12 and 13, I looked older than most guys my age so I was one of those who used to go to the pharmacy to buy some [to play with] — same as buying cigarettes — but that was it.

As we were approaching our destination, my heart was beating faster and crazier than ever before. There were many unanswered questions in my teenage mind. But again, I remained silent because I’ve always been that guy who looks cool even though it’s not necessarily how I feel inside.

Once we arrived and exited to subway we reckoned that it was some national holiday. I recall people were celebrating in the streets and all the shops were closed. Fortunately for me, this meant that hookers were off, too. You cannot believe how much relief I have felt then. Truly, I was beyond ecstatic.

The guys were slightly bummed, or at least some of them looked like it. Yet, 
this change of plan didn’t ruin the merry intoxicating mood we were in. For some hours we kept vagabonding through the streets of Paris before going to Burger King to grab a bite. Later in the evening we went back to my cousins’ place where I spend the night, and the next day it was back to my adopted family and that was that.


Fady, Shokry, myself, and Rami somewhere

The following are some of the lighthearted stuff I remember from the trip, which came to me as I’m writing like missing pieces of a grand puzzle:

  • On my second night in Paris I was having dinner with the family when they proceeded to explain to me what omelette eggs are. Perhaps they thought we’re Egyptian so we’re nomadic people who live by the Great Pyramid and ride camels to school. So, when the girl came to Cairo and stayed in the Sheraton where I was residing, my parents and I were joking about what she would go back to say to her family about the six different restaurants she was having her lunches and dinners at.
  • By the following nights I came to know how little do they eat for dinner. Eventually, I bought crackers and chips and kept them in my room because I would always get hungry later — dinner was early, maybe 6:30 pm or 7.
  • Leaving our Paris families to go stay with another family in, I think, Toulouse for something like three or four nights.
  • Some teenage drama between the boys and the Sacré-Cœur girls. Who dated whom and then broke it off and then dated another guy, and the guys had serious talks and all. Cute.
  • Buying Harley Davidson boots a few days before leaving Paris. Along some music CDs — Queen’s Live at Wembley and The Doors in Concert (the double album) — they were on the list. For the parsimonious French family, spending $100 or so on boots was utter madness. But Boy oh Boy, when I would wear them at the Gezira Club I felt like I was the coolest guy alive.

Playing soccer while Ahmed Baligh was being hilarious as usual
with Shokry on the far right and Mohamed behind me

A few months later it was A.L’s turn to come visit me in Cairo. Amusingly, one night as were physically goofing around I fell on the top of her on the bed and we started making out. Several minutes through, thinking that I wanted go further, she stopped me. “Je suis saine”, she repeated a few times. I guess that was her way to say that she was a virgin. I wasn’t really attracted to the Frenchie, so I stopped altogether. I had a feeling that she liked me, but from my side it was purely hormonal.

The next morning before going with her group to visit Luxor and Aswan in Upper Egypt for four or five days, she wrote on the back of a George Michael card I used to have by the mirror: “J’espère que tu ne m’en veux pas”; which literally translates into: “I hope you won’t hold it against me”, then slid it underneath my bedroom door. In other words, Sorry [that she didn’t go further] and that she hopes I’m not pissed.

Other than the lack of attraction, I had actually started dating a girl at the time. It was right in the beginning and it was my first real relationship during which we both came to lose our virginities — about a year after that France trip. We were in Love and felt ready and decided to go for it. Obviously it was the teeny kind of love, but it still was love.



As such, we made a tape with all the love songs we enjoyed to listen to during the action, and ended up going for it twice. I still keep the tape in my memories shoe box in Cairo. Finding it during this current trip reminded me of the story I’m sharing herein and inspired me to write the article. As I previously described in Rooting Into The Past:


She [our nanny] was around the house the first time my girlfriend and I had sex. My parents were away while my sister and I were sleeping at our grandmother’s. We had agreed on the day and prepared a tape with all the lovey-dovey songs we wanted to listen to while losing our virginities. Cute. When we went home we found that Bassima was there. So I told her that we’ll be watching a horror movie and the room will be dark, so to never, ever, try to interrupt us. “I’m trying to really scare her [my ex]”, I told her. She didn’t interrupt. It truly was a success.”



I can’t believe I’m talking about something from 25 years ago. That’s a quarter of a century!

We dated for three years, then after three more years when we were 21 in university we dated once again for a period of six months. Now that I contemplate what had transpired, this successful start was how I fell in love with love. I had always connected well with females and enjoyed their company, but I dare saying that the whole dynamic was intensified as I matured. Because, how the first time goes leaves a significant effect on our sexuality and future love life.


When I look back at some guys whose first time was with the family’s morbidly obese cleaning lady or with, like I was close to do, a prostitute I see a different approach regarding sex. Other guys, and those were the majority in Egypt, didn’t have sex during school — same goes for girls. Due to culture, religion and society, sexuality is repressed. A reason why it is not uncommon to find virgins in university, possibly remaining as such until marriage.

Another major reason for not engaging in premarital sex is a lack of privacy and space. In some parts of the world many people keep living with their parents until they get married. So sometimes you could find the partner but you have no place to go to. Some friends would get creative and go park the car somewhere far, then put a cover over it and start playing. In my case, I was lucky to live in a hotel and then I had my own place, hence it was never a problem.

Remember, we went to school in the early 90s before the Internet or even mobile phones. So unless you were one of the cool guys who had access to half-torn porn magazines or, even better, the few VHS movies the entire school has watched, some schoolboys had no idea if the woman’s holes are interconnected or not. I was seriously asked this question before.

Again, when some did finally have sex, or came close with a car blowjob, it was with a hooker. By that time, I had been having healthy sex for six or seven years, so naturally I felt exceedingly mature and ‘knowing’ compared to them. I hold that my early experiences empowered me with a way with women and taught me how to respect, treat, and please them; how to make them feel good about themselves.

Further, watching my father — who was a ladies’ man himself — deal with women was another influence. He is a true gentleman who taught me how to treat them gently and how, for instance, to let them go first, whether in driving or while entering an elevator or through a door. And I could see how the women appreciated these manners, so I followed through.

In truth, and without sounding like I’m bragging, by the time I was in my mid 20s I have had more sexual partners than all of my close friends combined. Simply because whether they were older experienced women or younger eager girls, I loved women and sex, I still do obviously: The connection, the flirting and seduction, the perfume, the foreplay, their warm skin touching mine, giving them orgasms. Despite being quite picky, especially as I matured, it’s fairly safe to say that I love the whole lot.

On that same note, When Choosy Men Reject Women is a recent piece about how things have developed and I became even more picky as I became more conscious. Why I Choose to Remain a Non-Dad for Now — Reflections on Being Childless is another. Conversely, Things I Miss From Being in a Relationship is a glimpse from the other side of the spectrum.

THE sentimental tape

Back to hookers, other than once in L.A and another in Amsterdam, I never needed to pay for sex. Sometimes I even joke with my friends, saying that I should be the one getting paid. In actuality, I only did it a few times in my entire life. During the summer course in UCLA it was friend who wanted it badly since he has never done it before, so when we picked up two girls I let him have the prettier of the two while I took one for the team and got the chubbier chick. In Amsterdam a few years later in my early 20s, the Red Light District was right there and legal, so it was purely experimental — and I was a tourist.

As for A.L, the last time we saw each other was on the last day of her trip to Cairo. Through hand-written letters we remained in contact for a while after. When Facebook started to become as universal as it is nowadays I tried to look her up, but wasn’t successful. I did, though, find her on LinkedIn; I tried again while writing this article and she’s still not on; using the family name I was able to find one of her brothers, S, who looks pretty much the same 25 years later.


Whenever I think of that one early afternoon in Paris I like to think that Cupid had protected me. To this day, I’m still sincerely overwhelmed with gratitude for not sleeping with a French hooker at that relatively young age of 14. Who knows what could have happened if that had been my first time? Imagine is she was smelly, or sick, or essentially a man. There is no certain way to know, but it’s likely that such encounter would have led me to take on a whole different approach towards dealing with women, my own sexuality, and love in general.


Vive Les Femmes! 





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