The two oldest ladies in the oldest profession in the world have decided to retire. Martine and Louise Fokkens (twin sisters, age 70), who have been in the prostitution business for more than 50 years will hang up their "come hither" glances and settle down. They claim to have serviced over 350,000 men between them, but age is as much of a disadvantage in the world of prostitution as their advancing arthritis.
Despite no longer working in the red light district so famous througout the world, these ladies of the night have turned their experiences into gold through two books, Look Only! Shop window stories from the life of two whores (In German on Amazon.com -Guckt ihr nur!: Schaufenstergeschichten aus dem Leben zweier Huren) and their latest tome, The Ladies of Amsterdam; and also a new documentary film Meet the Fokkens from directors Rob Schroder and Gabrielle Provaas. The New York Times review of the documentary states that it is a "familiar story of poverty, male violence, lost children and a fight for independence." (Movie trailer here)
While prostitution is a legal trade in the Netherlands, one that is regulated and taxable, it is still a very hard life for women who follow that path. Martine claims that legalization has not brought improvement to the lives of the ladies in the business. Their life story of breaking free from their pimp, running their own brothel, and starting the first informal trade union for prostitutes is evidence of the struggle ladies of the trade experience in Amsterdam.
Martine says she still maintains one regular client, one who has been coming to her for a long time that she says she just can't give up. The two are quite famous and are often seen signing autographs for tourists visiting the famed red light district.
M. Gwynn has authored two books, Harvest and The Cat Who Wanted to be a Reindeer on Amazon.com .
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