Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Who ate my banana bread?

I don’t know whether I should be flattered or alarmed. Since I have been regularly making different kinds of banana bread for breakfast, I found that I have been consistently missing slices. Call me a freak but when I make a loaf that I plan on to last a set number of days, I divide it into the exact number of slices needed. So when a loaf that is supposed to last four days only lasts 3 1/2 (Jason doesn’t get his on day4) I notice. And the slices always go missing on Mondays. After questioning Jason to make sure he didn’t eat it, (I didn’t think he did because he never actively seeks out food in the fridge and the only time he eats is if food is presented to him on a plate.) the only logical deduction is that Sonia, our cleaning lady, did. But why?

She comes on Monday while we are at work so I had to trust her exclusively for her to work alone. And I do, as she has demonstrated her honesty time and again when she carefully collects all the loose change and 1000yen bills that we leave around the house and place them on the sideboard in a neat pile. So why would she forgo money but choose to steal bread? (Maybe she is taking money too but I just don't know because I don't count my money the same way I count my bread slices) Is she hungry? I must admit I never asked when she takes her lunch break. Is my baking so irresistible that she had to have some but was too shy to ask? Am I being a bad person to have never offered my baking to her as a gesture of appreciation? But I already pay her $60 for four hours of work each week. To me that’s appreciation enough, or--- would she rather get paid in bread? Maybe this Christmas, instead of giving her the annual bonus, I will give her a loaf of bread. (Too obvious?)

It is such a tricky situation that I am too embarrassed to even bring it up with her. So I have tried to solve it subtly: by not pre-slicing the bread. But alas, Sonia is no Jason. She, unlike Jason, would not be deterred from eating just because eating requires a little extra effort such as slicing a loaf of bread. (Do not ask how I know she is still eating the bread without slices to count, I am not willing to admit the level to which I have stooped)

As a result, I continue to run out of bread one day before I am supposed to. What can you do?


Hsin said...

Hm. Tricky situation. I, too, would be too embarassed to confront my cleaning lady if I were in your situation. Perhaps you should go back to pre-slicing because it would make it obvious that a slice is missing. Tricky part is how to let her know you know the slice is gone. It's not just a matter of bread, but a matter of principle. She can have her slice, but she shouldn't be swiping it from under your nose.

Lynn said...

I know, very tricky indeed. Of course, the obvious solution that's been screaming in my face is to just quit my job so I won't need a cleaning lady!