I barely slept up to three hours before being thrown into the street. Got home at about 6.15am after a long wait for a cab heading my route. I rested for a few minutes, had my shower, did the needful and left for work.
It was a Saturday, and Saturdays are usually busy with people popping in from all angles, getting mostly groceries. My duty was basically customer care service, which also involves welcoming and giving customers directions. It seem as an easy job, but don’t be surprised that I barely sit for an hour the whole day.
Today, I was unbelievably exhausted even before coming to work. I had to take energy drink at every chance I got. I barely responded as friendly as I should. Ruth noticed my fatigue demeanor and often stepped in for me.
“what did you do last night? You look like someone who mounted a giant”, she teased. “I think I have malaria”, I lied. “Oh! You should have taken permission and skipped today”, her tone reeked of sincere concern. “you know madam won’t believe that kind of feeble excuse, else she sees it herself”, I said. “That’s true! Then go and rest. Sit over there”, she pointed to a sit close to the security station. “I will help you talk to the manager, perhaps he will give you the day off.
I thought it a splendid idea, at least a little nap will do a lot of repair. So, I complied to her suggestion. The manager came in a jiffy with Ruth lurking behind. He looked worried. After some kind words of concern, he permitted me to leave. I was strolling toward the exit with Ruth walking beside me. We got to the exit and waited for the security guard to open the door for us when my madam forcefully pushed herself in. I abruptly moved backward to create space for her to come in. She stopped in front of me, looking as though I had an ugly growth on my face. “where are you people going to by this time of the day?”, she inquired sarcastically.
“He’s sick, so the manager gave him a day off”, Ruth replied. Who asked that stupid manager to make such decree?”, She stormed. Her loud tone called attention from customers whose countenance showed their disapproval, but she cared more for a dead rat than their opinion. “Somebody call that born fool! Where the hell is that manager?!”. Her yell could be heard a mile away. I decided to intervene and perhaps save the manager, “it’s not his fault…”, but I was cut short with a startling “shut up! Am not talking to you!”.
I guess by now I should be acquainted with my position as a ‘fuck boy’, that was all there is to it, fuck boy. I stood aside while she walked in yelling for the manager, who unfortunately went out get lunch at a nearby restaurant. After wind got to him, he ran in like a troubled buffalo.
“Since when did you acquire this mall?”, she asked sitting on a comfy sit in her office, which was tastefully furnished. “I’m sorry ma, I don’t get”. He asked in utmost perplexity. “you don’t get?!”, she retorted in a sarcastic way. “what don’t you get?! Are you so dumb that you can’t grasp a simple English?! Who owns this place?!”, she yelled. “ha! It’s you ma! nobody is disputing that fact”, He responded. “then who gave you the right to send one of my staff home?”, she asked looking steadily at him. “he is sick, we can’t keep a sick staff here”, he answered. “and you didn’t see it wise to ask for my approval first! ehn?”
The room was as quiet as a grave yard at night, while the manager looked sheepishly at her. Then she broke the silence. “people like you who think they can do anything they like do not deserve to work here, or do you think you deserve to work here?”, she said coldly and readjusted herself more comfortably. He looked at her unbelievably, “ha! I’m very sorry ma, it will never happen again”, he said while kneeling in front of Amaka apologetically.
Sam is the name of our manager, a lanky fellow. Although he could be mistaken for an adolescent, he was nudging his late forties. He has been with my madam for 5 years, the only one who lasted that long in the history of the mall, others barely stayed up to 6 months. Hence the reason he is the manager.
Sam is the bread winner of his immediate family which consists of a wife who is a full-time house wife, while his straight line graph children were in primary one to five according to their respective ages. His salary could barely foot his inevitable bills yet his world revolves around his job because that was the best he has ever had.
Few minutes later he came out with a droopy countenance. It was glaring something went wrong . We tried to enquire from but he blatantly ignored us. We watched him go to his office, he returned few minutes later with his stuff. We tried all we could to console him because it was obvious what transpired, but he silently walked out of the mall without acknowledging us.
I felt a tight knot in my tummy, It made me feel sick. I felt even worse knowing it happened all because of my lousy shenanigan with my madam. All I wanted to do at the moment was resign, but I couldn’t. I swore to get another job if it’s the last thing I do. That day was so gloomy for all of us because Sam was an understanding guy and kind too.
To be continued…