I always leave work by 3pm and arrive home by 7pm. My house girl knows that. But once a week, I leave work early so that I am at home by 2pm. I do that on random days just to bust her and find out what shenanigans she’s up to.
Because of this strategy, the girl avoids engaging in big time mischief like bringing men to the house, or neglecting baby girl because she knows mama might pop in any time unannounced. Now I wish other working mothers would also embrace this strategy.
The many times I have come home early, I have been amazed by mischief other house girls engage in.
House girls are very smart people; once they master their employer’s routine, they come up with all manner of mischief. There is one particular girl who I always find chatting heartily with the watchman at the gate.
She knows too well that the owner of the house arrives late in the evening, always, so she will never be found. There is one who finishes her work and goes for a chat with fundi wa viatu with the baby safely tucked behind her back.
As career women, we may be busy as bees, but when your house girl masters your programme like she has mastered your kitchen, your baby suffers.
If you are used to arriving home from work at 6pm, once in a while, break the routine and come at 4pm.
That is when you will know her true colours. There was one girl I had who had mastered my programme so well, she played me a fool so many times.
In the mornings, she would pretend that she was busy with housework but immediately I left, she stopped everything and started watching the naija movies in full blast. One day I came back earlier than expected and found the house in total disarray.
The breakfast utensils were still on the table, she had fried God knows what, eaten it and left the dirty utensils on the table. The naughty girl had mastered my routine so well, she had time to lounge and just start doing her work an hour when she knew I was about to arrive.
From that day I busted her, I have learnt to surprise my house girl with odd arrivals every week, so that she has no time for mischief.