Friday, September 16, 2011

Another World

One of the maids who worked at Mak's house in Melaka has had to finish work and go home to Indonesia for good. Her husband is very ill, and will almost certainly die soon. The doctor has effectively given up treating him. She has six children to look after back there. And very little money. She didn't work long enough in Malaysia to start saving up the 'real' money maids here aspire to - unlike Sulis who has now done pretty well for herself.

Of course, the 'pretty well' I'm talking about would seem like a pittance to us. We're looking at people on the verge of poverty here. Which is why they have to come over to work. The maid in question left her kids behind because she had to find work when her husband fell ill. And now she has to leave that work to face huge difficulties at the other end.

Other peoples' worlds can represent certain kinds of freedom, but they sometimes can sadly turn out sounding like the most dismal kinds of prison.

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