Monday, February 19, 2007

Everyday for the thief…

As she opened her bag, out came my black belt, a cheap wooden bangle that my sister had given to me and several items from my mother’s shop.

Okay, so I’ve jumped the gun. Let me take you back to how this all started. I’m sure you are all familiar with the saying that Everyday is for the Thief, One day for the owner. Here’s my own experience.

My daughter is roughly 15 months old and for all of that time minus 2 months, I have not had a nanny, housekeeper, au pair….nada. I have looked after her by myself, with the help of my mum, dad and siblings. That is while still maintaining a full time job and studying online for an M.Sc in Engineering. When my daughter was about 5 months old, an acquaintance traveled to the UK for one month and loaned me her girl for the month- A dirty, slow Yoruba girl who’s back I was glad to see. Whenever she washed her hands in the loo she always managed to get water all over the floor. Not that she would clean it up o! She thought that water on the floor of the bathroom was normal. She sat with her legs open all the time which is something I cannot stand. Anyways, she was gone in a month and I was glad to see her go. I do not like dirtiness of any sort around my child.

The search was on for another nanny to replace this one.

Months passed, no luck. Finally, last month on the 6th of January, I got a nanny for my daughter. This was a relief for me as my exams are round the corner and I badly need to concentrate. She was neat, efficient with the housework and easy on the eyes. She dressed well too. In fact, the one thing that I noticed about her was that the chic loved her some fashion. I had no problem with that as long as she did not show up near naked. The arrangement was that she would come in the mornings and go to work with my mom (she owns a shop in Ikeja) and take care of the baby during working hours. In the evening, she would return to the house with my mum and the baby and then go on to her own place. She lived about 20 minutes walk from my house. I think it’s important to note that she was not just a walk-in. My mum has known her mother for about 15 or more years.

Anyway, the first week this girl starts work, my mum notices that some money has gotten missing from her shop. Naturally, she confronts the only person she suspects and the nanny denies it vehemently. It happened once more and then mum started watching her money more closely.

I am of the opinion that you must always catch people red handed so I started looking for my opportunity. At a point, life took over and I forgot about setting a trap for her. Then one day, I left 4k in my wallet and left the wallet in the sitting room overnight. Not too long after she came to work, I remembered that my wallet was in the living room and went to get it. I counted the money: 3,000. I counted again. 3,000. I called her and asked her what hat happened to my dough…naturally she denied it. That was unfortunate as she put herself back on my radar.

Two days later, I called in sick at work because I was not feeling well. This means that I was home when my mum and the nanny got home. As soon as I could, I gave her some money and asked her to buy something. She had dropped her bag in it’s usual place. I locked the door when she left and went through the bag. Nothing. Two minutes later, I realized that I had not checked the inside zip. There, I found my belt, bangle and a few things from my mom's shop.
When she returned, I acted normally and asked her if she had seen my black studded belt anywhere. I even helped her by stating that my daughter had been playing with it a few days ago and may had mislayed it. She denied it. I asked her to go home and when she got to the door, told her to come back and empty her bags. Her face fell and her hands started shaking.

As she opened her bag, out came my black belt, a cheap wooden bangle that my sister had given to me and several items from my mother’s shop.

I will cut the story short here. Although she claimed that she had not stolen anything else, when I threatened her sufficiently, she revealed that she had a few more things in her house. She wept like a baby and asked me not to sack her as she will not be able to find another job. She also confessed unbidden that the reason why it will be difficult to get another job was that she always felt compelled to steal wherever she worked. She had reported to her pastor and she had been asked to come for deliverance.

My response: "Well, boo-hoo! You should have considered all that before you started stealing from me. History!"

P. S: Chioma recently had a post up about her househelp wahala. You can read it here.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Posts I have enjoyed reading

Some blogs are not really well known. From time to time, I will bring y'all posts I like from these little known blogs. Starting out with these two.

Hell, I am Angry! was posted last year, but I still remember it because it touched a nerve with me.

This blogger has an interesting name: So hard getting a name!
Although she has had only 2 posts up, this one is really entertaining. She reminds us that
What Goes Around Comes Around

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day!

BTW: Not looking forward to the traffic that will result from all this love.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Good News On Newsline

I watched Newsline on Sunday. I know I said I would no longer draw on them for stories, but this is such a happy one, I just had to share.

It's simple really. Man and woman get married in 1986, they wait for the inevitable to happen-children-and despite all their prayers and dreams, none come.

Husband is a doctor while wife is a nurse so they had access to a lot of medical help. Years go by, nothing. 5 years, 10 years, 15 years..nothing. In that time, and in despair wife asks husband to go get another wife. He refuses saying that he does not want to bring problems into their home and asks her to have faith. Her father in law calls her after 5years of marriage (I shrink from calling it fruitless) and told her to be strong and have faith in the Lord and that the baby would come when it was time.

Finally, after 20years of marriage, the woman conceives and delivers a healthy baby girl.

I like this story a lot. Wife was interviewed and she spoke of her husband in glowing terms. Spoke of his steadfastness in prayer, his refusal to marry a second wife even after she asked him to. His unwavering support of her...his unwavering faith, his ability to shield her from the pressures of relatives and other outsiders that would ordinarily made her life a misery. She concluded by calling him her “shine shine bobo”. That is what Star Beer is called, so I assume that she was calling him her Star. Husband was standing by looking at the ground and smiling from ear to ear.

Her voice broke many times as she spoke, but she obviously wanted to get her story out there, so she forged ahead. Here's a picture of the happy mother.

Congratulations Mr and Mrs Umanah!

Friday, February 02, 2007

Toss It Out!

Yesterday morning, I had to throw out all the raw meat in the freezer. Out went the minced meat, goat meat, sausages, shrimps...all of the good stuff. My mum was able to salvage the Oha soup, pureed tomatoes, boiled meat and a few other things.

Yes, you guessed it. NEPA/PHCN issues are back again. We have not had constant electricity for a while. Funny thing is that we have 3 generators that are to supply us electricity but for some odd reason we have been caught with our pants down and not enough electricity to carry the freezer. Okay, not exactly odd reason. We had relaxed on fixing the generator that usually carries the freezer and the second one that carries it just stopped being able to do so about a month ago. I can't figure out why. The last one is a small one that just carries the lights and the fan.

I told someone about what happened to the food and she went " Ah! You would have boiled everything and tucked in." I can't help wondering if this chic is for real. I should sit down and eat all that food just so it does not go bad. Hmmm, I would go bad.

Anyway, NEPA/PHCN is lucky there was no kpomo, shaki, brokoto or roundabout in the freezer. If those ones had gone bad, I would certainly have gone after them. LOL!