Maid

The last stand of Vulture Maid

2:22 PM

First of all, I’m all moved in into my new place and I’ll come to it in another post. In the midst of all the shifting and packing and travelling I didn’t get the time to write about my maid in Bangalore, that very same one I called the scavenger in another entry.

So here it goes, we are sorting out our stuff, deciding what should stay behind, what comes with us, the usual drill of relocating. After some deliberation DH and I decided to ask the maid if she wanted our old rice cooker, toaster, the wooden trolley in the utility area, a bag of old clothes, our garden umbrella and stand as well as an old UPS. She agrees to take the lot, and we made it clear all along that it was what we were giving her and repeated the list a few times, and she then says she will take the stuff later during the week. Then 2 days before the packers and movers came she announce she can take the rice cooker with her immediately, which of course we are fine with, but right before she left she went to DH (probably knowing from experience that I have no soft spot) and asked him “Can I take some of your pots and pans and crockery too?” DH was quite baffled to say the less, and then replied that no they are not for give away. hearing the thing myself I thought “Typical” it’s not the first time she is asking for any of my belonging she judges old without even an ounce of tact, she always asks in such a way that makes you feel like they should be hers. DH not quite used to her antics as I am, agreed that I was not kidding when I reported that she always try to get much more out of the bargain.
We thought it would end there, but the next day DH tell her he has a few more clothes she can take, first she start by asking if some of Ishita’s clothes are in there as her sister has a 1 year old daughter, he replies that no there is none, and I ad that I already gave her all of the baby clothes I got rid of a week before, she proceeded to leave, but at the last minute went back to DH and asked “Can I have the mattresses too?” DH told her bluntly “No, we are still using them” and after she left laughed and told me what the maid just asked for. And I was about ready to just crash my head on a wall! I wonder where she got the idea that the mattresses would be left behind, because they are quite new, and are these costly coir thick mats, we have two and we pile them up and cover them with a blanket in Ishita’s room so that they look like a low diwan, their primary use though are guest mattresses, she saw Ishita and my dog on these the whole 6 months she worked for us, and I really wonder still what made her think we wanted to get rid of them. Pretty much as the pots and pans for that matter, she washed these daily, she saw they were not that old and pretty much still in good condition, why would we get rid of hard anodised woks we bought barely a year ago? And what exactly entitled her to ask for these without us offering?
All in all I’m not too sad to see that maid gone, because scavenging behaviour aside she also had a diva attitude in her, and it was always a constant struggle to get her to do the thing she was supposed to do without her voicing her opinion. She stated from the start she wanted us to keep the empty bottles and beer cans for her, but she would only pick them up at her convenience, leaving the bags accumulate on my balcony, worse she would just try to dump other’s people bags of crap in my home, I once missed one, and she left it for days before I threatened to just throw it all away. Then she tried to pull the stunt once more and I cornered her after she brought a huge load of shampoo and bleach bottles with her and tried to leave without, her reply to my questioning about the bag was “Oh I’m leaving it there I will take it another day!” to which I replied “No you take it with you NOW” and her to say “It’s not convenient” and me to say “well I don’t want it there” and her to reply “Why is it a problem”…geez, let me think, why indeed would it be a problem for me to just become the communal dustbin for all recyclables, why would I not want other people’s trash on my balcony? Clearly explaining the common sense of why I don’t want her garbage in my home would be though so I simply told her that I have a baby and a dog and I don’t want her detergent bottles around…period. Looked her straight in the eyes and she got the hint, took her crap, not without acting like I was doing her a huge disfavour and slammed the door.
Then there were the instances she left her tiffin box with me, the first time I thought it was an accident, and luckily I was there when she finished her other job at 2 and came to pick it up, but she tried it once more, and I reminded her to take her bag and was met with “I want to keep it there, it’s more convenient for me” to what I told her that it was NOT convenient for me and I was not going to wait around for her the whole day for her to choose when she wants her stuff back…I have a life thank you very much, she again made a big theatrical sigh, took her stuff, and left.
And there were the cleaning issue, at one point I invested in a more environmentally friendly floor cleaner from Amway, told her to use half a cap only, showed her how to do it, and her to ask immediately that she wants Phenol, I told her no, she retorts that this new detergent is useless as it doesn't smell and she wont use it, I tell her that it’s all there will be and that it doesn't;t smell because it’s organic and safer for kids and nature, she refuse to use it for a week. Then announce that I have to buy phenol because the balcony are dirty, I blow up, scold her, show her the Amway detergent, tell her it’s the most advanced imported detergent available and I want her to use this one, show her the half cap thing, and leave, only for her to furiously use a plastic broom and splash water all over including my freshly washed clothes that were drying outside, and me to go and scold her some more, and her to retort that this detergent is crap, and point at the dirt not coming off the balcony, me to remind her she needs to use the wiper blade, and go take it out for her, and SHOW her how it is done, and how the dirt goes on the first rub with it, her to just throw it away saying it’s taking too much effort!
A week later I notice though that half of the bottle of detergent is gone, remind her that it’s only HALF a cap, and her to tell me she is not using the cap and pouring freely into the bucket because it is simpler, me to tell her it’s highly concentrated (refraining from saying costly), her to play deaf, leaving me to just count the days until we would be rid of her from our imminent relocation.
I never had a maid that had that much of an attitude, not even the first maid I had in Navi Mumbai, and she convinced me to be even stricter with the next maid should the need arise in our new place. So far so good though, but we’ve been in our new quarters only 2 days, things can go sour later on.

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