Friday, January 9, 2009

Domestic Woes

What a way to start the new year!

I'm either super lucky or super "malas" when it comes to household help.

Super lucky because my kids have had the same yaya for the past almost 13 years. Yayay, as she is fondly called, has been with us since Anissa's birth and now takes care of Sabine.

On the other hand...I've had just a few household help whom I don't care to talk about but for purposes of this entry, sige na nga. One that really stands out in my mind to this day is the helper who decided that my LV Monogram Bucket bag was no longer of any use to me and threw it away along with the other basuras I asked her to dispose of for me. Unbelievable right? No one told her to do that, of course. She just said she overheard me talking to Yayay and telling her that the bag was "walang silbi" because the lining had become sticky from storage. What she didn't know was that I was taking it to the LV store that same week, because the SA I spoke to said they could have the bag shipped to HK so that the lining can be replaced. When I was ready to take the bag to Greenbelt, I looked for it high and low and couldn't find it. That's when she told me...Ma'am, tinapon ko na kasi sabi mo wala naman silbi. Well, you can all guess what happened after that. She became history that very same day.

Now back to my original topic, which is the helper I've had for about over a year now. I didn't have any major problems with her while she was here. In fact, the kids took to her immediately and she automatically becomes Yaya whenever Yayay goes on day off or busy with her chores at home. After more than a year of service, she asked if she could go on vacation. Why not? She deserved it after all. So on December 26, we took her to my SIL's house to meet up with another helper there who was going home to the same province. Before that, we gave her Christmas bonus (one month's salary), plus my parents gave her cash as Christmas gift as well. I heard from SIL's other helper that the other maid wasn't coming back anymore so I jokingly asked my helper if she was planning to do the same. And if she was, she better tell me the truth so I can look for a replacement first. She guaranteed me that she was to return in 2 weeks. FINE.

January 8 was the day she was supposed to arrive in Manila. On that day, we got a text from her saying she didn't have enough money to buy her return ticket and reminded me that before she left, she worked another 7 days --- so technically, those 7 days were not paid yet. She requested that the money be sent to her via LBC so that she could buy the ticket right away and return to us. FINE. The transaction was done on that very same day. Right after we texted her the tracking number, we expected a reply of course. There was none.

This morning, I texted her again since we still hadn't heard from her (even Yayay was texting from her own phone but wasn't getting a response). She replied but not to me. She texted Yayay this : Ate, paki sabi kay Ma'am hindi ko masagot ang text nya kasi binura ng kapatid ko bago ko pa nabasa. Hindi na ako makakabalik dyan. Galit na galit si Papa sa akin kasi nangangayayat daw ako. Pinunit ang ticket ko sa barko, ngayon wala na akong pambili. Pakisabi nalang kay Ma'am and Sir.

I don't know who's more or Yayay. She owes Yayay close to P300 (which is a big thing for them) because she kept asking Yayay to buy load from the neighbor for her and promised to pay her when she gets back. She didn't even mention anything about this in her text, atleast not until Yayay reminded her about it (very angrily, I must say). To which she replied that she would send Yayay payment as soon as she's capable. YEAH RIGHT.

It's really frustrating. First of all, because she was never really "pabaya" with her work. We were very satisfied with how she did things, especially when it involved the kids. She's not as alert and as hardworking as Yayay but she was fine. She gave us what was expected of her. It's obvious to us that she's lying about why she can't return. I just wish she had the decency to tell us the truth before she left.

It's a good thing we were able to hire a reliever before she left and that reliever is still here and is willing to stay on a more permanent basis. We just have to train her a bit more but personality-wise, she seems alright.

Hayyyyyy...kawawa naman si Yayay. I'm going to pay her whatever the other helper owes her of course. We're still trying to recover from the shock of that text we got but there really is nothing we can do about her anymore. It's so hard to look for trustworthy helpers nowadays. I'm just happy she wasn't a thief!

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