by Andy Mayer
So you moved to a far away land where you swear some of the inhabitants have a altered version of reality to you. Locals move through the days sipping teeny cup after teeny cup of sweet black tea, they smoke packet upon packet of cigarette and are never in a rush to get a task done, usually one that it is upmost importance to you. “Boukra inshallah”, “subene inshallah”, “oh we can do that next week yeah?”, chill pill Andy just chillax, no rush, let’s go eat lunch.
Take yesterday for example. My vacuum cleaner is broken, not beyond repair kind of broken, not even replacement parts required broken, the fucking thing won’t charge. The little light won’t go on when it is plugged into the wall. My reality is I can’t vacuum the carpets and it is really really dusty so I need it fixed. Now this appliance may have been a little mistreated by a person who shall remain nameless (not me as I don’t vacuum) well I never used to until we moved to the land of no housemaids for average foreigners. But that is another story. No fuck it I will tell you right now.
There is a cost, an agency fee of between $4000USD and $4500USD to be supplied a housemaid. On top of that there is an expectation of an $800 a month salary. I know some of you are gasping at the shame of reading a “madam” would only pay a person to work 5 days a week a meagre $800. In fact I know there was gasping because I whinged on FB and the response was “well that’s disgraceful” and…. this gem
On top of that there are some of you who are gasping at the fact you could not afford a housemaid if you lived here because you only pay your workhorse a paltry $300 a month in the UAE, Saudi or other human rights ignoring country.
I know that is the salary for a fact because I visited an “agency” I call them “Human traffickers R us” and they said I can take possession of a not so young Nepali for $300 a month and “Madame never give them a phone”? (I can explain that later) I then would pay him $4000USD for the newly purchased woman. I can’t condone that and never will. The search continues…..On trying a so called cleaning business here I was told “no problem 1 day cleaning is $75” when I asked what a day meant, I was told 2 hrs!!!! bloody hell I need my vacuum fixed now for sure.
I have digressed and I am sorry I shall continue with my riveting story about the vacuum. Ok so this darn vac is quite good as it has a little vac in the middle you can take out for unfortunate crumb dropping incidents on the couch. I like that you can just suck them up ,whack it back into the big vac and off you go. This big unit sits on a charge plate and that is how simple it is. MY charge light won’t come on and now matter how long I leave it there willing it to charge I switch it on and nothing but a tragic whiir and deathly silence. I never actually have deathly silence as I have tinnitus which could be a source of my slow decent into madness.
Anyway. I asked one of the company employees( ok it was my driver) if he could take me to a repair shop for electrical goods. He said the best thing I should do is chuck it in the bin and buy a new one. A sentiment half the world share about anything in life these days which included everything from scratched fridges to supposed life partners.
BTW have I told you how many men “dumped” their wives for a younger better undamaged shiny younger model when we lived in Mongolia? OMG it was like there was something in the water, well actually there were high levels of Arsenic, Uranium and Mercury in the water so we all went a little bit crazy some crazier than others. I recall a big night at a champagne dinner where I ordered an additional bottle after our table ran out,I refused to pay for it saying I deserved it or something along those lines and souveniered a Tattinger glass for myself… I think there is a chemical in champagne that brings on an altered reality?
So where the hell have we ended up with this story. Altered versions of reality. Reality schmality I am going for a cup of hot sweet black tea in a teeny weeny cup and a smoke! Fuck the vacuum. I just chucked it in the bin.
Failure is an option.