Trriiinnnng…Trrrriiinnng…. Trrriiiinng.. Mira could hear the ringing next to her ears. She tried hard to grope in the dark for her phone to switch off the alarm. “Why is it ringing? Who put the alarm? We are on holidays now. Why to get up?” Mira was dreaming, when she was awakened by the kick on her leg. “Mira… Mira. Shut the alarm yaar. If you want to put the alarm, please learn to shut it also” her husband Suraj, was shouting after trying to kick softly at her leg to wake her up. Mira got up at once in shock and started searching for her phone. The voice was coming from beneath her pillow. She put her hand and took out the phone and dismissed the alarm and looked at Suraj. He was staring at her with a frown on his face.
“Sorry, go back to sleep” Mira said and climbed out of the bed. She looked at Dia, her 4-year-old daughter sleeping soundly unaware of the commotion the alarm had caused.
Tiptoed, Mira went to the bathroom and freshened up. She tried to make minimal noise so that Suraj will not wake up.
When she came out of the bathroom, Suraj was sitting on the bed with his head hung low. “What happened? Mira asked softly not to wake Dia.
“You happened!” Suraj said growling at her softly and went to the bathroom and shut the door with a bang.
Mira looked at DIa, thankful that the bang had not woken up her daughter.
She went to the place which she hated the most-kitchen. She looked at the clock- 5 am. Oh my God! I am late. She thought. Hurriedly she started cooking breakfast for Dia and Suraj. She remembered Suraj had asked her to make “Aloo ka paratha” for breakfast and Fried Rice in lunch which he carried to office. On one gas, she put some potatoes in the cooker and milk on the other. Side by side, she started making tea.
Without her morning tea, Mira was like a dead meat.
“Shit! Today I got up late”, she muttered under her breath. Normally Mira gets up at 4 am and finishes all the chores by 6 am when her maid comes and then she sits and has her cup of tea in peace for 5 minutes. But not today.
Lunch got ready and she packed it in the tiffin for Suraj. She had to make t “Aloo parathas” when Suraj would come for breakfast so that he can eat hot hot parathas. She didn’t want to make them and put them in the casserole as Suraj liked them hot from the “Tawa”.
She boiled the milk and emptied one glass for Dia and kept it on the table. She filled water in the jug and kept all the plates for breakfast with cutlery neatly arranged on the table. Dia’s breakfast was bread butter jam which was kept in her tiffin box. Mira put Dias tiffin in her bag and kept Surajs tiffin on the table. She took the keys off the holder and Surajs laptop and kept them together with the tiffin box.
The tea was boiling and Mira badly wanted to have her tea as her head had started aching, but she had to take out Dia’s and Surajs clothes. She put the gas on sim and went to do the remaining chores. Thank god, I had ironed them yesterday night” though Mira.
She went to the almirah and took out Dias uniform and laid it on the bed next to Surajs clothes.
Now I can have tea in peace. “she thought and was going to sieve the tea, when the doorbell rang. She looked at the clock 6 am. She opened the door and her 1st maid was standing there. Mira heaved a sigh of relief on seeing her.
Mira sieved the tea for her and the maid and sat down to have her tea. She had just taken one sip when Suraj shouted from the bathroom. “Mira Mira… where is the soap?”
She left her tea and ran to the room. She had forgotten that the soap had got over yesterday. She went to her cupboard and took out the soap and handed over it to Suraj in the bathroom. She looked at Dia who was tossing and turning in the bed. Dia opened her eyes lazily and made a sad smiley face and said “Milk mama…”
Oh yes! Mira picked Dia up in her arms and took her to the washbasin. She washed her faced and made her rinse her mouth with Dia screaming her guts out. Then she made Dia sit on the table and handed her the glass to drink her milk.
By this time Mira’s tea had gotten cold. She took a sip and said “Uggghh” and kept it back.
It was 6.20 am when her other maid came for cleaning the house. Suraj had gotten all dressed up and was sitting at the table waiting for Mira to serve the breakfast.
Mira was in the kitchen getting the “aloo ka paratha” ready. “Mira… hurry up… I am getting late… I have to reach office by 8 am. Why can’t you make parathas beforehand?” Suraj was shouting.
“Yes!! Getting”… Mira replied and came out with hot hot parathas in a plate with pickle with a smile on her face.
“Uff… It’s so hot… How can I eat it?” Suraj was mumbling when he tried to take a bite off the paratha. Mira shouted from the kitchen—“Dia? Have you finished your milk?”
Trring … bell rang… Mira took out the other “paratha” and put it on Suraj s plate and went to answer the bell. It must be the driver, thought Mira. And yes, it was! She gave the driver, Surajs laptop and lunch box while Suraj was busy eating “the parathas” and flipping over the newspaper simultaneously.
She made one more hot paratha for Suraj, when he shouted… “I am done!” and he got up to wash his hands leaving the plate on the table.
Mira switched off the gas, came to Dia. Dia was smiling and she had just finished one quarter of her milk. “Dia!! Finish your milk. You need to get ready for school beta… the bus will be here in 20 mins”. Mira made Dia drink up her milk and took her to the bathroom.
“Bye Mira… Bye Dia… “She heard Suraj leaving with the bang of the door closing. Mira gave Dia her bath, dressed her up and made her eat 2 biscuits.
Dia and Mira were running to the main gate to catch the school bus when Mira realized that she had left her purse in the main dining room and the maids were working now.
She just could not go back but only pray that no money should be gone.
Bus driver was waiting at the gate from past 5 minutes and gave Mira a stare. Mira smiled and apologized and waved a sweet goodbye to Dia.
Mira walked back hurriedly to her home crossing her fingers “Oh I hope my money is not gone!”
She opened the door to her flat. Both maids had left by this time and her purse was on the sofa. She quickly searched in her purse and saw that nothing had been taken. “Thank God!” she muttered under her breath and said a silent thank you to god and promised herself that she will never leave her purse out in open again.
She got up from the sofa and heard the doorbell again. She opened the door to find the iron man asking for clothes. She got all the clothes to iron and gave it to him. She looked at the clock and her cold tea. It was 8 am and she still didn’t have her tea. She took the tea and boiled it and sat down to have it.
Tea made her lively again and Mira started to make the bed and cleaned up the mess Suraj and Dia had made. She picked up the dishes from the table which Suraj had left and glasses and kept them in the sink, cleaned the kitchen.
It was 9 am when she finished cleaning and then she remembered that she had to put the clothes for washing in the machine. She took out Surajs and Dias dirty clothes and searched for her clothes which needed washing and put them in the washing machine. One of Surajs shirt needed hand wash which she reminded herself to do before taking bath.
Mira went for her bath and did puja and was entering the kitchen to make something for Dia when her mother called on the phone. After talking to her mother who lived in the same city around 4 kms away, she went back to the kitchen to make “dal chawal and sabji” for Dia. She looked at the clock. 11 am. DIa will be back by 12. She cooked and then went to pick Dia up from the apartment gate.
Dia jumped at her mother and spoke nonstop telling her what she did at school. Mira was starting to have a headache when she realized that again she had missed her breakfast, as on most of the days.
Mira fed Dia and made her to sleep. It was 2 pm when Mira sat down with her lunch plate to eat. She had just put the first bite into her mouth when the doorbell rang. Now Mira was getting irritated. She got up to see the iron man coming back with her ironed clothes. She paid him and finished her lunch in 15 minutes.
She cleaned the kitchen and wanted to lie for 15 minutes when the doorbell again rang. “Now who is it?”She thought. She opened the door and found her neighbor standing and asking for some sugar. She went to the kitchen and did a good neighbor’s duty.
Finally, I can lay down for 10 minutes. She thought. She had just closed her eyes when Dia started crying … “Mama! Mama!…” Mira got up suddenly and saw DIa crying. Dia had got up from her sleep with a bad dream. She cajoled Dia and made her sleep again after some time. She looked at the clock. 4.30 pm.
“Now how can I sleep?” Mira thought and got out of the bed. She went to the kitchen, prepared milk for DIa and dinner for everyone and her cup of tea.
It was 5 pm when DIa woke up and after having her milk, asked Mira to go with her as she wanted to cycle. Mira got dressed and took her for cycling. She spoke to some apartment people in the meantime while DIa was cycling. After 1 hour, she took Dia back home. Mira gave Dia a bath and got her dressed.
Trring … The doorbell rang. Dia went to open it and saw her father. “Papa! Papa! Papa!” She shouted and jumped on Suraj.
Suraj plopped himself on the sofa and told Mira, “I am so tired from morning.! Can I have a cup of tea? And by the way, Mira, you are looking so fresh!! Slept a lot throughout the day ha?”
Mira looked at him and smiled and went to the kitchen to prepare the tea.
Dr. Preeti Sharma
Founder & CEO
Red Broomm Events
Next: Maid Woes