Have you ever had to fire someone?

Have you ever had to fire someone?

If I were to obtain the authority to fire someone, I would have fired my father’s chauffeur.

Allow me to divulge the background briefly. In my country, it is rather common to employ an Indonesian driver (chauffeur). This is not like a regular employer-employee relationship in a company or business entity. This is more like a family lending-workforce in a means of providing workforce at home. So the so-called Indonesian chauffeur works at any odd hour during the day and not at night after 9, unlike the usual 6-8 working hours per day. The host of the house can call out the chauffeur any time to work, just by whistling through the lips. Meaning to say, the Indonesian has to heed any orders such as mowing the garden, washing the car, taking and sending the children to school or fixing the light bulbs.

With a monthly salary of $200, they are far better off than those redundant workers at their homeland where unemployment rates are plummeting.

In my life, I have almost 8 chauffeurs substituted every 2-3 years. They were sent back to Indonesia mainly because of misbehavior and bad attitudes. One time, I had this chauffeur who took one of my father’s picture and pinned it to a cushion chair, piercing my father’s face as a decoration in his room. At that odd time, just after I came back from the mosque, I sneaked into his room and saw the picture. (It was odd because I have this feeling in me to check into his room since the door was left ajar). The second my father knew about this, he told the chauffeur to pack his belongings, gave him his monthly salary and at the same time, angrily demanded the picture. At first, the chauffeur spat lies after lies like he didn’t know about it and he had no idea where that picture came from.

So my father and the whole family restrained him in the kitchen room, interrogating him inside out. I even had the guts to shout at the top of my lungs, demanding for that picture. In the end, the chauffeur gave up and lied that the picture was pinned at the back of the cupboard near the toilet. Apparently, it was logic that he had hidden it there all a long.

The main reason why my family and I insisted to obtain the picture back was because Indonesians are well-known to use this ‘mantra’ or spiritual technique in making another person’s life miserable, just by showing the “Voodoo-Man” the hard-copied material belongings to the victims in a form of pictures, hairs or even nails.

That was long time ago.

Currently I have a-not-so-long chauffeur, living under the same roof. He is nice and well-behaved but ever since that event, where he had an accident colliding and hitting the side of the car with another car in a traffic light, my father has to incur the losses and carried a lot of debts since the other driver had won the case in the court.

I know there is no reason to blame my chauffeur for this accident. But to think about this way, if he were to drive the car slowly and carefully on the road, such thing would not have happened.

Occasionally when he drives me to any place I wish, the limit speed is around 60-70.  And one time, in the junction or at the corner, I can safely say that I have experienced a dreadful, near death experience when a car nearly hit the side of the passenger’s door by an inch. Shockingly, I didn’t say anything to him at that particular time.

So am I wrong to think that I should have fired him if I have the power?


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A thriller with a touch of romance. A mystery seeker. A modern daydreamer.

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