Amah or domestic worker
I over-heard in the radio on a chat between a Radio DJ and a caller (sound like a teenager) as follows:
DJ: Hi. Who is this?
DJ: So where are you calling from?
DJ: What’s the weather like over there?
Caller: It’s fine
DJ: So what have you been up to since this morning? I know it’s almost lunch time now.
Caller: Nothing much, since it’s non-school day today. Had my brunch at 10ish and now listening to your station.
DJ: Thanks for tuning to our station. So you have been basically hanging around your house and nothing much else to do, is it?
DJ: If I may ask, what did you have for your brunch?
Caller: The usual Bruneian stuff I guess, like noodle and Nasi Goreng with fried chicken.
DJ: That’s sound full-filling to me. Do you prepare your own or you have your mom doing it for you and the family?
Caller: Yup, my mom is doing all the cooking, I just eat. (Laugh)
DJ: Luck you. I have to cook on my own and for my cat. So I assume you help out with the dishes?
Caller…(More laughing)…Nope. That’s the maid, like every Bruneian teenagers, I don’t do any housework.
By this time I was appalled. Now what make you think that caller would make such statement? Is she assuming that everyone in Brunei owns a maid? I don’t. My brothers don’t. Others in the family who don’t have small children don’t. Some of my neighbours don’t. Not everyone in Brunei have maid as claimed and yet this is the kind of thinking coming from a teenager?
Lets talk about having a maid or ‘amah’ as we Bruneians called them. Why do we need one in the first place? For one obvious reason, its for those who have young children need some one to look after their children.
Of interest, I stumbled across an online news from Jakarta Post on an Indon amah who celebrated Hari Raya with her family after ending her two-year contract. I couldn’t help but think that there are people in the world who are not that lucky like us here in Brunei. Btw, the salary stated should be Brunei Dollars and not ringgit, isn’t it?