Back in Venezuela, they were teachers, police officers and newspaper carriers, but were forced to flee their homeland to survive. The women, without identity papers, ended up working as prostitutes in sordid bars in Colombia.
Mother-of-three Patricia, 30, was beaten, raped and sodomized by a drunken client － but she keeps on working in a brothel in Calamar. Alegria is a teacher of history and geography but in a Venezuela gripped by chronic hyperinflation, she was earning less than a dollar a month.
Alegria initially worked as a waitress in the east of Columbia, but she was never paid, getting by on tips. Eventually, even those were confiscated, so she made her way to Calamar. With nine other women, she prostitutes herself every night in a bar.
Many women also struggle with hiding the truth from their families. "They don’t know what I do," admits Alegria. "It would be too difficult for my mom after sacrificing five years of her life to pay for my studies."
exile：名詞，流亡者、離鄉背井者。例句：Roy has been an exile for 20 years.（羅伊已經流亡20年了。）
sordid：形容詞，骯髒的、卑劣的。例句：Roy lives in a sordid slum.（羅伊住在骯髒的貧民窟。）
get by：動詞片語，（勉強）過活。例句：Roy can only get by on old age pension.（羅伊只能靠著老年年金過活。）