Thursday, September 20, 2012

Creepy Peepee

I just went out to the covered porch of our house, and there was this creepy peepee, slowly slugging its way across the cold tiles.

Advisory: Graphic images after the break:

Friday, September 14, 2012

Domestic Tranquility

In our seven years of living in Mexico, we resisted the idea of hiring a cleaning woman to help us with our domestic cleaning chores. But with increasing age and infirmities, we began to consider hiring a helper.

We don't really live in a dirty house, but I admit that our life style is relaxed.

The transition was made easier because in the last month, we have been helping our 17 year old neighbor, Srta. Miriam, with her English homework. We have grown closer to both her and her mother, Sra. Salud. We had a passing acquaintance with them over the last 6 years, but only recently have we come to know them better.

We knew that they knew how to clean houses. They take care not only of their own, but of local three houses of their relatives living "al otro lado".  Sra. Salud, the mother, recently suggested that she could clean our house for us. It was intended as a gift, but we felt it important that they be paid for their work.

Doña Cuevas and I discussed the various ifs and could bes, and I got some valuable input from a few other expats. We decided to offer the mother and daughter team a four to five hours shift, one day a week job. They accepted with smiles. We wrote out a list of tasks that would be included and those to be excluded. For example, dish washing and cooking were excluded. So was clothes washing and drying as we still can mange those quite well ourselves. I'd be ashamed to tell you what little pay we offered, but pleased how willing they are to work. We had no idea how industrious, thorough and cheerful they are.

On Wednesday, although they arrived a little over 30 minutes late, when told the task list of the day, they went at it with high energy, persistence, a systematic manner and great cheer. Afterwards, the house gleams and smells wonderful; and their presence lifts our spirits.

The work begins
By afternoon, Sra. Cuevas and I were wearing out from general fatigue, but Salud and Miriam were still going strong. They cleaned ceilings as well as floors. First, of course, they washed our many windows. Ladder, hose, buckets, broom. They used experienced techniques that we hadn't imagined. They scrubbed the sills with a brush and bleach.

They cleaned our bedroom, which although it had been done by me recently, they still found plenty of spider crud to remove from the ceiling corners. They made our bed very nicely, although we hadn't expected that extra touch. It felt great later to slide into a well made bed for a nap. They arranged our shoes very nicely.

They must have mopped and mopped the entrance area "porch" at least 3 times.

They cleaned our bathroom so well, you might be tempted to lick the floors and walls. We didn't think that they would get to clean the bathroom, but they did, due to experience, efficiency and high energy. When we last looked, Salud was in the bathtub, scrubbing the walls and tub surfaces.

During the time they were here, (9:30 to 3:30), they never took a break, except to use the bathroom; nor drank any of the water we'd set out for them . At 3:00 I had to almost forcibly stop Salud from cleaning more things.

Gleaming hallway
We wish we had hired them sooner, for having Salud and Miriam come to clean our house gives us a great sense of well being. We are looking forward to the next time they clean. Next time; kitchen cabinets, under shelf of my baker's table; dining room, living room and bath, again.

Tools of the trade. Even the potting shelves were washed clean.
Clean! Clean! Clean!