9 Oct 2018
The Cleaner. 2
Making ends meet
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He said his name was William. I directed him to my house, and on the way took the £9 change from my purse and placed it in the central console, I must admit with great regret as it could have really helped out with some things my daughter needed for school.
As we stopped, I asked him if he would like to come in for some tea or coffee. He hesitated, and then said Yes, if it wasn’t inconvenient for me. I was desperately trying to remember if I had left the house tidy as I unlocked the front door and showed him the kitchen. All looked slick and span. I made him coffee and we talked... well to be honest I talked as he gently listened. I was just so grateful to him I needed him to know I wasn’t just a feckless single mum. I had been really let down, financially as well as emotionally when the extent of my husband’s debts, which legally I was also responsible for, were revealed. And much as I been trying to get a job, our daughter’s school hours and my lack of any family support made it almost impossible.
And when my tale was told, William nodded and asked if I had ever thought of becoming a housekeeper. He had told me he lived alone, aNd he quickly explained that the duties of a housekeeper were usually cleaning, laundry and household management, and in certain circumstances, the hours could be really flexible.
And he looked round the kitchen, and said “Judging by the cleanliness of your home, I would employ you at once if you were available.”
And so we agreed on Mondays and Thursdays, at a rate slightly above what I could have hoped for. His home was less than a mile away and quite close to my daughter’s school. I walked him out to the car, as it had now stopped raining. He slid down the window, and put his hand out to me. As I went to take it, he dropped the £9 into my hand, and smilingly insisted the the money was mine.
The next few days were heaven. Although still heavily in debt I now had a plan. My daughter had new crayons for school, and I could afford a new coat from the charity shop.