The teen maid carries a bucketful of utensils to clean at a borehole, a baby strapped to her back. Meanwhile, her mistress screams her name to hurry up and make the fire before she prepares the vegetables for lunch. A pile of clothes awaits her just a stone throw away as the madam, yet, again screeches a reminder about washing them. As she turns to the charcoal burner to light the fire, madam instructs her to rush to the front door because she heard her husband walk in. She is to relieve him of the shopping load as her hands are too full flipping through television channels. Mind you, the maid has been awake from 4am and is expected to remain on her feet throughout the day and is the last to put head to pillow. Meanwhile, the older child follows her about crying of hunger.
There are women who will not lift a finger, will delegate everything to maids, including cleaning the couple’s underwear. Our Soul article on page 6 explores such type of women, who act like royalty and think that is what running households is all about. Most have no clue what the shopping bags brought by their husbands contain and leave food to perish right in their refrigerators and cupboards. They do not bother to even make a cup of tea and have long forgotten what a tomato looks like or how it is to tear from an onion. To them, they are living the modern life, fully equipped with professional cooks, maids, butlers, garden boys and any help money can afford.
I have news for such sisters. You are voluntarily pushing your men away to that woman who has invaded your space in the name of protecting your nails, tiredness, equity, status and beating your competition with friends. Men are attracted by small acts of love and care such as a cup of coffee on arrival from work, help with the groceries, walking up to meet him on the balcony with a simple greeting before he enters the home and meal preparation. It gives them a sense of belonging and attachment that most women take for granted. It is no wonder we hear about maid take-over in the homes, all the way to the bedroom. The maids are simply playing roles they shouldn’t and nobody should complain when the role extends to the bedroom.
I am in no way condoning adultery or hero-worshipping those men who have turned to maids for extra curricula activities. I am sure there are those in such a predicament even after working their backs off for the men they love. There will be perverts, but there are also the circumstantial misfortunes. Would it hurt women a little time in the kitchen to cook for the family even for the working ones? Whatever happened to division of roles where the male and female play their parts? Some will not even supervise the kitchen or household cleaning, leaving these to the devices of the maid. She will decide what to include on the menu and the woman, just like everyone, get the surprises- good or bad- right at the table.
Maybe I’m old fashioned, but I believe the men sometimes include on the grocery list, some of their favourite items or food they love. Should it be not the wife or partner’s duty to discern that and prepare his favourites from time to time? Would you blame him in the shift of emotions from madam to the ‘slave’ on the basis of her attending to his hunger needs? Kodi mmesa mwamuna mkumimba? That is the best way to get back your man emotionally and keep him.