Three or Four Things

No great theme this week.  Just few amusing anecdotes….

The end of the month was payday for our help.  It was also our first payday for anyone on a salary from us.  So, it took some organization on our part. Figuring regular hours worked, overtime worked, extra allowances and all that extra stuff.

In my figuring, I remembered that our pembantu was due a clothing allowance.  So, I came home and asked her, 

“Bu. A, how would you like your clothing allowance?  Divided up?  All at once? As you need it?

“How about when I started working?”

“Oh, you mean a month ago when you first started working with me?


“So, you mean I’m late?”

“Yep.”  She smiled.

My family and I are pile people.  Call it horizontal filing.  Call it hording-lite.  Call it sloppy.  Those closest to us have witnessed this.

So, we all came home one day last week to find our piles conspicuously absent.  Magazines and books were on shelves. Papers were stuck in drawers. Everything was close to it’s original place and fairly logically stowed.

“Bu. A!”, I joked as she was leaving for the day.  “Didn’t you like all our piles?”

Her smile beamed at me from down there somewhere around 4’ 11”.  “I don’t like messes. See you tomorrow!”  And she shut the door behind her.

Caught a cab back from lunch last week. Traffic was already starting to build.  I hopped in a taxi that was going my way. In my preschool Bahasa I told the cabbie I wanted to go to my office and gave him the usual landmark that I give all the cab drivers.  

He looked me up and down over his left shoulder and in a flash I’m sure he surmised that I was foreign and clearly linguistically challenged, and that the both of us were going to be frustrated by the trip.  And just like that, he unlocked the door and said “Saya tidak tahu”  (I don’t know it)

I was swimming in sudden rejection.  Is this cabbie breaking up with me?  I thought the locked doors were a commitment!  To have and to hold from the meter drop until I reach my destination!  “Wait!, I have a map!”  I implored.

He shrugged, “Saya tidak tahu”, he repeated and nudged his car over to the curb and stopped.

I took the hint. I stumbled out onto the sidewalk. He sped off. I laughed and was engulfed in thick cloud of diesel exhaust as an old bus rolled by.

It was an early soccer practice morning, so Z was up and out the door by quarter to 6 in the morning.  I came down to find all the power was out in the downstairs part of the house.  I found a text message on my phone.  

“Hey, sorry for the mess.  The electric is off downstairs.  I put bread in toaster and the power went off.”

What is with this country and the poor quality toasters?  See previous entry here.  This toaster was 5 weeks old!  

I flipped breaker. Retried toaster. Poof.  Out went the lights. No smoke.  No sparks.

I flipped the breaker.  Moved toaster. Tried again. Poof.

I flipped breaker. Tried again.  This time pushing down plunger slowly.  Poof.  Same result.

Well dang!  I guess one should not scrimp on the quality of one’s toasters in this country.

Came home in the evening and wondered if perhaps it was the wiring in the house that was bad instead.  Found a hair dryer and plugged it in.  It worked fine.  So, I tried the toaster again. Maybe, the wiring was okay, but just tired in the morning.  Poof!  

“Dad, you cut off the internet!”  

I flipped the breaker and then peered into the toaster and discovered that toasters are where geckos go to sleep during the day.  There peering up at me with now sunken eyes was a well and truly 6 time-electrocuted, 3-inch long gecko.  Eww!

“Ahhh! I’m a murderer!” cried my daughter.  

What does one due with a gecko in your toaster?  Can we just scrape it off and go about our breakfasts?  2 of 3 of us voted “no” and so I guess we’ll go find another toaster and maybe a nice toaster cozy to keep out the wildlife.

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