Sunday, November 6, 2011

Desperate House Cleaners

While recovering from surgery, the house got progressively dirtier. F only did so much and I couldn't do anything on crutches, so I placed an ad on a local internet site for help cleaning the house: 2 hours once a week. Just enough to do some basic cleaning like vacuuming and cleaning the bathroom.

To my surprise, I got over 80 responses. The calls kept coming at all hours from early morning to evening and weekends, too. My mobile phone's battery was completely drained at the end of everyday by the sheer volume of telephone calls. The emails popped up in my box, one after another. Foreigners, Italians, women, men and girls. I got printable CVs! They were willing to drive 30 minutes to get to our house to clean for just 2 hours. They wanted to be interviewed immediately. I was absolutely shocked. Even the 45-year-old daughter of the family that lives door happened to mention that she saw the announcement, figured out that it was me, and asked for the job.

If anyone tells you that the economy is just fine here, they're wrong. There are thousands of people who are trying to make ends meet by cleaning. Young girls doing poorly-paid internships who need a little extra money. Women out of work. Mothers who wanted to do a little extra work when the kids are at school. Men who lost their jobs.

I am lucky that F and I have a job.

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