I have a cleaning lady who comes to my small flat once every two weeks and cleans for three hours. I think she cleans for three hours. That ia what she is supposed to do. I have given her a key. The flat is clean when I come home, so whether she cleans for three hours or not is immaterial to me. I have paid for the flat to be cleaned and it is clean. Once I came home unexpectedly when she was in the flat and she was making herself soup. I said fine. A cleaning lady has to eat.
Two years ago in January I gave her a rise and then last January I gave her another small rise. Just one pound more each time. She deserves a rise like anybody. But some time in the middle of 2016 I got confused by the rise I had given her and didn’t quite remember what I was paying her. I was not sure if I was giving the money that I wanted to give. Once I left a £2 coin with the notes and when I came home the £2 coin was still there. This Christmas I left her a botttle of champagne but when I came back the champagne was still there on the table. Maybe she just forgot to take it home with her. Last week she was back came for the first time after the new year. I did not have time to get the right change for her, so I left more than was normal. I thought, next week I’ll leave less than normal. Of course, I am still not quite sure what normal is anymore. When I got home she had left me £4 in coins on the dish on my table. Which tells me what is normal. For her, at least. Except that, as it is January, I should be giving her a new £1 rise. Or maybe she had factored that into what she left in the dish. I have decided that next time I am going to write the new figure for her payment on a note on the table so that there is no confusion. It will be £1 more than she took away last time. There is a fair chance that this might be the money I would like to give her, but it’s not sure. However, the bottle of champagne that I had left on the table for her for Christmas I have taken away and put back amongst my small stock of wine. After all, Christmas is over.