24 July, 2006

Sand in my pants

What is it with Indians wanting to do my washing? I was subletting part of a villa and the Indian nightwatchman developed a weird fixation on me. The couple I was subletting from had gone away and he had keys to the villa so he could feed the dogs. Anyway, whenever I was at work, he'd not only attend to the pooches but he'd also do my washing, clean my room, buy me toothpaste, move things around in my room - and then he started coming in to my room in the mornings when I was still in bed. That is when I moved out. But it all started with him doing my washing. I got home to find he'd sorted my knickers into matching bras and undies and was ironing a bedsheet.

Then I moved into a flat that's part of another compound and the Indian maid from one of the other houses appeared when I moved in. She reached into my car and started carrying my heaviest bag into the flat. I ran after her and told her not to worry as she was a mere slip of a woman and probably about 70. But it was too late - Suriya was a force more powerful than Superman. Then she offered to do my washing while the woman she works for was out. As this woman is incredibly rude and vile, I liked the idea of borrowing her maid (and her water and her washing powder) behind her back. The washing was gone for nearly three days. I started to worry. Then I got home from work and there it was drying away. Except my white lingerie had bright blue streaks on it. And she seemed to have used fabric hardener.

So I've taken to using my friendly local laundry service - they do an excellent job and the price is right. Except Suriya has since asked if I want my washing done again. I humoured her and left some bits and pieces out for her that I didn't care too much about. And then I went to India for a long weekend. Came back. Dirty washing still outside my door where I left it. Back to using my laundry guys. Except I now try and bring it all home after dark so she doesn't see me. What is the etiquette here? Anyone?


Woke said...

What is the etiquette here? Anyone?

Doubleletter said...

Better to post a link here, than the whole post.

[Double's grouchiest look]

P.S the moral of the story is that indian women may not offer the same level of obsequiousness that that men do... after all, you're 'Georgia'

[Double's slimiest smirk]

secretdubai said...

I think him coming as a male into your room as a female verged on the inappropriate, and he possibly had a slight fetish. You are perhaps lucky nothing untoward happened.

If it had just been cleaning and washing general stuff, then the main motive is financial. It's a very useful way for these (very low-paid) guys to earn a bit more money. When I lived in Bur Dubai the watchman would take out your rubbish for you and wash cars, and you would tip him every so often (I gave him a couple of hundred dirhams for Eid as well, stuff like that), and there was an out-of-work guy hanging around always desperate to clean your floors (only problem is he was useless, I did use him a couple of times but I would preferred to have paid him to do nothing).

pemba said...

Matching sets? That's hot.

archer14 said...

"What is it with Indians wanting to do my washing?"

Very discriminatory.

"What is the etiquette here? Anyone?"

Yeah, right. I'm touched to hear of your plight. Here's wishing you the best at hiring people at better wages, so that they can free themselves of worshipping you - or your undies.

BuJ said...

wow... this is probably the wackiest and most incongruous and refreshing post i have ever read here.

Take me to your leader.

pemba said...

"Very discriminatory?"
Are you freakin' kidding me? This is the UAE, get off your high horse.

Anonymous said...

An underwear fetish seems somewhat evident. However, in such cases a lot depends on the owner of the underwear--their physical looks. How about posting your pic? I'd be able to tell a lot more.

Mme Cyn said...

Well, Georgia, I know where you're coming from. There's a lovely guy who washes my car for me every day but Friday, and to whom I pay the requested monthly rate. My own feeling is that if I'm not home at a reasonable hour, while Shajel is still working on the other cars in the garage, then tough luck-- my car can stay dirty. However, if I come home late, he comes early the following morning and cleans my car!! I have told him repeatedly that it isn't necessary, and no way should he worry about my car when I stay out til all hours, etc, but to no avail.

I feel horribly guilty.

(I also give him vacation pay and pay him the regular rate during my vacations when I'm not in the country dirtying up may car, thereby assuaging that guilt. And no, I don't think this is why he does it).

What's the etiquette? Who knows?

Harsha said...

Archer, how is it discriminatory?

Be careful with your innerwear, ppl here have a tendency to flick womens underwear.

Anonymous said...

I once saw a ladies' panty (black) stuck in the branches of a tree close to my place in Satwa, near Al Wasl Park. Wonder how that got there.

Ideas, anyone?

Mme Cyn said...

At least he only wanted to wash it and not steal it! I lost five bras off my clothes line while living in Japan!

Georgia said...

Hi everyone. Sorry, I didn't mean to post this here. This was meant to go on my personal blog but I messed up and posted it here by mistake. Still, I'm glad it has entertained people or got them curious about the contents of my lingerie drawer. And feel free to check into my personal blog any time you feel like it, crazy kids.

As for "discriminatory" - not at all. Was just pointing out the coincidence of two Indians offering to do my washing. With the nightwatchman, I was very lucky nothing untoward happened as he had a key to the villa and came into my bedroom early in the morning when I was still in bed on a few occasions. I offered him money for doing the laundry the first time and he refused! Which made me feel guilty because I am sure I earn much more than him.

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