Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Well, it's about damn time!

HB13 got his iqama yesterday. The document that allows him to work. I don't know how long he had been without it, but I know we got home from the States on September 3rd and when I called him shortly after our return, he was waiting to get his papers and said he would call me as soon as he got them. Finally, Inom [I called him Inam the whole time he worked for me - his uncle, Appuk is my gardener and set me straight on his name - habit forces me to call him Inam] called last night - while I was still sitting at the table with the women from my volunteer group arguing discussing the need for hiring an outside accountant to try to make sense of the books which are fubar'd.* Inom was willing to start work this morning, but I knew I had to work at our "volunteer" retail shop from 8:30 to noon, so I asked him to come Wednesday morning at 7 so we can discuss things, first.

A houseboy again! Yey!!! I won't have to spend time cleaning bathrooms, and scrubbing floors and dusting or vacuuming. Happy, happy, happy. And I'm sure Inom is happy, too. I doubt very much he is happy about having to come back to work for one of the most difficult women on this compound to work for, but happy at the prospect of once again having the ability to earn an income. Especially since he has been sitting in his room since at least the first week in September waiting to get papers that he didn't get until yesterday - October 27th - it took at least eight weeks. Trust me - he hasn't left his room. If he would have gotten caught out on the street "walking without papers" he'd have been thrown in jail until he could come up with his fine [some astronomical amount he would never be able to come up with] and then he would have been deported. That is how it works, here.

Inom has had absolutely no ability to earn any money during the time he has been sitting in his room which was a situation totally out of his control. Does it really take some "official" eight weeks to produce the documentation to give some man who has come from another third world country to work? No. It doesn't. [My DH has to get his iqama renewed every year and it takes all of 24 to 48 hours!] Inom has had to cancel his vacation - and will not see his family for at least another year. He cannot afford to travel home. He is not the only one who has gone without money - his family, who depends on him to send his meager monthly remittances home has likely not seen any money for at least two months, either. Unfortunately he is not going to get rich off of me - I hope that the other families he was working for prior to his needing to get his iqama renewed have kept his job open for him. Inom and I have a difficult time communicating as he speaks limited English. He told me, when I called him back last night, that he will work for me first for whatever hours I want and whatever days I want. I am happy to have the choice of what hours he is going to work for me. Originally I thought he was going to have to work in the afternoons - which was okay, but since I "work" [sit next to the pool] in the afternoon I wasn't thrilled. Now, I have the option of choosing his hours and I am going to have him come from 7A to 10A or 11A, four mornings a week. Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday and Wednesday. This house is going to shine! It will be so clean you will, literally, be able to eat off the floors. Although, I must say, I've actually done a very good job keeping it that way on my own, but there are a lot of things I haven't done... Do not look up when you walk down the hall - no one has vacuumed the air conditioning vent in a very long time!

The reason I let Inom go originally had nothing to do with the fact that he wasn't doing a good job. He does, in fact, do an excellent job. But I made the mistake of paying him hourly so he had no incentive to move any quicker than a snail in a coma. Not this time. Salary. I know what I expect to get done every day. He can get it done in three hours - or four. His choice. He will not get paid any more if it takes him five hours! Yes. I do expect him to move. I can clean an entire bathroom - and I have some pretty exacting specifications - in forty-five minutes. There is no reason whatsoever it should take an hour and a half. Unless you are getting paid hourly. I will not make that mistake. And, it is not just inside housework that I want him to do. The patio furniture needs cleaned regularly. The windows have not been done in several months - oh sure, I've taken Windex and a paper towel to them to get rid of the Kids' slobber marks - but they have not been done on the outside since I eliminated HB15. More importantly is the issue with the Kids. I realize that not everyone is a four-legged Kid lover like I am. I am not asking Inom to "love" my Kids. I am, however, insisting that he tolerate them. He does not have to pet them and hug them. I don't expect anyone but me - or DH - to give them actual physical attention and affection. But, he has had some issues in the past with the Kids and that will be cause for instant termination. I will make that very, very clear tomorrow morning.

I am just happy that I finally have a houseboy again! This past two months without one has made me realize how much I really, really need want one and I just don't know how anyone can exist without one...

*fubar - fucked up beyond all recognition


  1. well at least that's a bit of good news.....send me an email about how the meeting went, as I know you probably can't go into details on here.


  2. a houseboy?
    i wish.
    i really wish.

  3. Ahhh - mabrook to you and HB13.

    It's a big relief when you have someone to help you around the house. :)

  4. Gill - Will send you an e-mail this weekend to fill you in.

  5. It is a luxury here, Clippy, that I never realized how much I would appreciate until I didn't have one. HB13 is back - he started this morning!!!

  6. You aren't kidding, L_O! Relief??? I'd say that is an understatement. Now, back to enjoying my life with no worry about scrubbing and cleaning... Yeah!!!


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