Tuesday, 13 August 2013

What Madam requires

I work as a domestic for my Madam.  I look after Madam’s big family and her big house.  I tend to Madams big garden and her big cars.  For Madam – everything must be big.  She herself is big.  She is also big on ambition – both professionally and domestically.  Which is where I come in.

Today I had a review with my Madam.  And she reminded me of her expectations and requirements regarding my performance.  Some requirements were new, some she was just recapping.  In my own words and in no particular order let me tell you what my Madam expects.   

My Madam requires;
  •  I am all-knowing.  I must know everything that happened during my watch - where the bumps on the children came from and where her yellow, blue and green scarf is.  She wore it yesterday and left it in the laundry basket.
  • I am omnipotent - all powerful, invincible and able to do what is inhumanly impossible.  I should make her 2 year old eat all 6 meals every day, and on time, and each meal must include all food types.
  • I am honest.  Loyally honest.  I must tell the truth at all times.  I must tell her that when she is away on her business trip, the husband is away too.
  • I am consistent.  I should do everything correct the first time, and subsequently in the same manner, all other times.
  • I am organized.  I must finish what I start before I move to the next task; even if the door bell is ringing, one kid is crying on the potty and the other one is hanging from the new sheer blinds madam hang yesterday.
  • I must practice order.  Return each item after use, where it was before use.  And before and after cleaning.  Madam usually asks me strange questions like, “can the bath mat be where I step out of the shower?" and “can the bin be under my sink when I come home in the evening and not have migrated to the other end of the bathroom - every siiiiiiiingle bloody day?”.  Of course these things can be in the places she wants them to be, but someone will have to organise that.  Yes?
  • I must be respectful.  I should wait until Madam has asked me for the 20th time today about the baby's poop, before I start rolling my eyes and walking away.
  • I must be able to take correction.  Take it calmly and with the intention it was intended for.  Take correction - without my face swelling like I have multiple allergies and ate mudfish in peanut sauce during the maize flowering season.
  • I must be clean.  I must practice hospital-like hygiene standards, for germs sake!  Personal hygiene is key.  This will ensure she does not choke and gag every time I pass her in the corridor.  I really will try- but you must understand that sweating is a result of working?  Maybe I can use the creams to remove the adult hair in the armpit.  Maybe then she might come to visit me in the kitchen.  And also stop asking me “have you washed your hands”?  I have tried to make her understand that my hands are naturally dark; it is genetic.  My hands are truly clean, they spend more than 10 hours a day in water – what time do they have to get dirty.
  • I must be encouraging.  Especially to the children.  I must encourage the toddler to feed and dress herself, whilst remembering timeliness, order, and organisation as stated above.
  • Yes – I must be timely.  This means not only doing things on time, but also being able to tell time.  Morning means up to 11:59:59 and after that it is afternoon.  The position of the sun does not apply. 
  • I must love “the children”.  Yes I must.  I should not see them as pesky evil things that spoil my work and try my patience.
  • I must be able to multitask.  I should be able to talk and sing with Madam’s child who is also carrying her own baby, and cooking her “nyum nyums” at the same time.  If the child can carry her baby, talk, sing and cook at the same time, surely so can I.
  • I must have a memory.  A good memory.  Madam gets very irritated if she has to tell me today the same things she told me yesterday.  But I do like to hear her voice.  Any adult voice actually, that is not at the end of a very expensive mobile call or from that their TV box, that I am not allowed to watch.
  • I must work fast.  Furiously fast.  Madam says we are all tired, but that it is required that I finish the laundry before the sun goes down, so that the clothes do not dry by moonlight.
  • I must look pleasant.  She does not require beautiful – that we all know would be beyond even the “slim-possible” for beauty.  She does though require I do not scowl so that the visitor’s baby does not cry every time I look towards it.
  • I must be decent. In dress and language.  Tumbo cuts, spaghetti strap tops and miniskirts operate on koinage and electric avenues.  This is Madam’s home, where she is bringing up God fearing children.  This is not a whore-house, she is not a pimp and there is no client trawling the estate and house corridors.  Yes that is baba watoto and that is the watchman and they are not potential customers!
  • I am above average intelligence.  This I think is self explanatory – never mind the fact that I ducked when they were hurling brains out to people.
  • I am educated.  I must check the children’s homework when she is late - as she always is.  Whether I know that there are 32 numbers or not in the alphabet is immaterial.
  • I must have good handwriting.  At a minimum I must be able to construct a comprehendible monthly shopping list.  Scrawled items on the list such “ supolis” make her go crackers in the middle of the new Naivas.
  • I must be a magician.  I must be invisible as I do my work. 
  • I must know my place.  I am an employee and not a member of the family.  I should not be cracking up at the Madam’s stories and correcting the pastor on some bible verse when the jumuiya comes to visit.
  • I must be a child “something” - I forget the name.  It means that I must understand words like confidence building, dialogue and boundaries.  Words like that.  The rod is not a parenting style that happens in Madams house.
  • I must have certificate of good conduct.  No police record!  My behaviour should also confirm the same.  Madam does not need kanju coming to knock on my door with the Mwaura from the kiosk whom I owe three hundred shilling for vitamins (stones) and the lovely bint-el-sudan perfume I took three months ago.  Any stories told to my debtors of withheld salary will get me out of her house so fast my feet will not touch the threshold.
Those are the things my Madam expects for now.  I am sure that the list will grow soonm since it must be time for Madam to be expecting again – she gives birth every 28 months.  Remember - she has big ambitions on all fronts.


  1. Madam is expecting??? Again...........

    1. How now would madam be expecting......lol!! Funny man! But one can never be sure - yes?

  2. Oh dear! Madam is quite erm.....insane?

  3. Insane - yes she would be if it was all one person, all the time. I think each of us has some aspects of Madame, one time or the other.

  4. Its' my first time here- But its scary how some of these things listed here apply :D *Hand Clap*