Shiro has been around for the last one week, since it is Idd-Ul-Adha week in Dubai. This time, I am happy that she is around while the children are on holiday since she can now keep them busy. Every holiday these days, we parents get all manner of pamphlets about potential activities for the children to participate in, all of them costing a lot of money and really not making sense.
Shiro has been insistent that the children take part in them —which has been disruptive for my work schedule since I have to pick and drop them. Now that she is here, she has managed to help out with these duties, and I am feeling quite relieved since I have started off the handover process in the office.
Shiro and I also got the chance to resolve our issue regarding my failure to tell her about my job offer. After the famous hanging up incidence, she refused to respond to my phone calls and messages since I wanted to clear the air. It is only on the second day of her visit did she say, “babes we need to talk.”
I feigned ignorance and said, “what about?” She laughed and said, “stop pretending, you know what I want to talk about- the fact that you can make life-changing decisions without involving me.”
I had no choice but to give her the full explanation behind my silence. I told her, “these guys were blowing hot and cold, so I did not want to raise your hopes prematurely.” She used this as a cue to fish for more information as she asked me, “and was it worth it, what does the package look like?”
One of the things about our marriage is that we never really get into the nitty gritty about exactly how much each of us makes. There was no way I was going to bend this rule, so I told her, “ just know that it is better than my last one- the medical cover is great, and they have a school fees allowance for the children.”
The story about school fees seemed to please her greatly and she was keen to ask for more details as she started saying, “we might need to transfer the children to a better school- Maingi has been struggling.” I was taken aback by this statement and said, “Who told you that?” She said, “ When I dropped him, I spoke to his teacher who also happens to have been in my primary school back in the day.”
Shiro told me that according to the teacher, our son appears to have “reading challenges.” This was news to me, and I felt as if it was gross exaggeration. I told her, “ I would want to discuss this further with the teacher for this is news to me.”
I was trying to hide my annoyance since Shiro’s comments seem to indicate that I have not been taking good care of the children while she has been away.”
On one hand, I was happy that the job issue was not top of her mind, but on the other hand, I was not pleased with her line of conversation. So, I told her, “you schedule the meeting then we can get more details.”
My statement gave Shiro the opportunity to go back to the job questions. They were numerous—what will be my job title? Will I be expected to travel? Where does my boss sit?
I happily answered these questions, but in typical fashion, Shiro had to ask about the money. She found a roundabout way of finding out about the money. She asked me “so with your new salary, can we at least buy a house.”
I laughed and said, whoever said we cannot afford a house? I am sure if you told me how much you earn, and if you bought less shoes, we might just afford a house.”
This seemed to silence her, but I know she will stop at nothing to find out how much I earn.