Sometimes I marvel at how the corporate world works. We are already working on the plans for 2019. This is before we are done with 2018. The CEO told us that he is under pressure from the board to share the figures for 2019 and, therefore, all of us are working on the numbers.
Lucy was not very sold on the idea and during one meeting she spoke for me. She said: “Are you sure we want to work on 2019 figures, we are doing badly?”
The CEO let out a nervous laugh, saying “we always have to look forward not to get caught up in what is happening today”. After the meeting, I had to give Lucy some tips including to never question the boss in public, “especially in matters to do with the board.”
She responded the chief executive always encouraged staff to give “honest feedback.” I said: “He might say that but in reality he prefers things done differently.” She tried to argue with me and I told her I have learnt the hard way.
This need to close the numbers has seen me working long hours and I have not been able to do homework with the children. After we completed submitting the budgets, the boss gave us a day off “and get some rest.” That is how I found myself in the house on a Friday mid-morning. Just as I was taking breakfast, I noticed the presence of this strange lady in the house. She appeared to be very at home as she wiped tables and cleaned dishes, saluting me: habari mzee.
I was offended by the mzee tag, but I decided to let it pass and establish her identity. I could not help but blurt out, “Who are you?” She responded in shy way saying her name is Milcah. “I am here to help Auntie” This was news to me.
On days like this, I wish Shiro was around to deal with the issues of domestic help. I was going to broach the issue with Auntie but I thought that would be foolish so I decided to chat with Shiro instead.
When I called Shiro, she laughed it off and said, “Sorry, babes, I forgot to tell you, Auntie was getting overwhelmed so I asked her to get another lady just to deal with doing the laundry.” I really wanted to protest and make a fuss with Shiro for not informing me of such important details. I realised that I might not win so I stayed put and said, “Well, you should have told me.”
Shiro brushed me off with a quick apology as she moved on to what she said was the next hot topic.
She was looking to get a car to send back home. This definitely had my attention and I asked: “What car are you looking at?” She did not know, saying “I just know I have a hefty car allowance which I need to take advantage of — something in the range of Sh15 million.”
This was music to my ears.
I would have the chance to upgrade my car at someone else’s cost. She told me: “Why don’t you go online and look at cars and tell me which one you like.”
I could hardly wait to get off the phone so that I could begin the search.
Shiro’s move to Dubai might not be so bad after all, even with the inconveniences of strangers in my house.