I promised Lin I’d fetch her and her 2 schooling children to shop for their schooling needs today. This morning while I was still at my office I called her up to ask if I should fetch her at home or at her goreng pisang stall. She told me her stall is closed for today, so I should fetch them at home.
I got to Lin’s house at 3 pm – on the dot. After I honked, I saw Lin coming out with a girl. At first I thought the girl was Marlia, Lin’s youngest daughter, but when I looked again, eh… lain pulak muka! After a while, Rahim, Lin’s son came out. When they got into my car, Lin introduced the girl as her niece who spent time at her house during the school holidays. Lin’s brother (the girl’s father) knew about my role and so it wasn’t a problem for the girl to tag along as she knew me as the lady from the charitable organisation helping Lin’s family out.
But Marlia was not around. She was still at her Opah’s kampong house. She was supposed to be back on Sunday (yesterday) but with so many cousins around, she postponed it to this coming weekend. When Lin called her last night to inform her that Makcik Afizah would bring them shopping for their schooling needs today, her reaction was, “Alaaaa…. NAK IKUT!” But I wasn’t about to postpone my plan just because she was not back, so today we went ahead without Marlia. Marlia’s father had already bought her school uniforms and work/exercise books from school, but had yet to buy her shoes, school bag and other stationeries.
So today we just went to buy uniforms, school bag and a pair of school shoes for Rahim and stationeries for both Rahim and Marlia. Although Marlia did mention what type of school bag she wanted and what size her shoes were, we figured it’s better for Lin to wait for Marlia to come back and let her choose her own bag and shoes, and then Lin would submit the receipts to me so I could reimburse her.
Well, I think I’m done with shopping for schooling needs for this year. Next year is just a few days away anyway. There are still a few families who have yet to submit their claims to me, but at least I’m not the one who has to bring them out shopping…
Anyway, I was informed by Lin that her ex-hubby, Mr Darling has begun to slack in paying the monthly alimony of RM300 ordered by the court. He’s either paying it late, or less; giving all sorts of excuses. His present father-in-law got sick and he needed to spend extra lah (that’s not Lin’s problem is it?), he had bought Marlia’s uniforms and workbooks lah (isn’t that his responsibility? That shouldn’t be deducted from the alimony!).
So guess what? I told Lin to do a few things…
1. Since Mr Darling works with a government agency, I told Lin to arrange for the alimony to be automatically deducted from his salary. At least he cannot give any more excuses such as the above.
2. I got Lin to give me the whole list of Marlia’s schooling needs that had been paid for by Mr Darling so I could reimburse Lin with the money. At least it would cover for the alimony that he’s not paying her.
3. I told Lin to remind her children NEVER to inform their father that they are getting financial help for their schooling needs. If he finds out, chances are he’d leave his children’s financial needs totally to our care!
Another reason for Lin to arrange for the alimony to be deducted from Mr Darling’s salary is to save him the trouble of having to come over to send the money to Lin. In the first place, even without salary deduction, all he needed to do was to bank in the money into Lin’s bank account. But he’s not doing that. The salary deduction may also save Lin the trouble of having Mr Darling come over to the house, sometimes at odd hours. He recently came over at night to give October’s alimony – knowing pretty well that his 2 younger children were at their Opah’s kampong house. Luckily their 18 year old son was home, so at least Lin was not alone. But since he came at night, Lin was already in her sleep clothes (her baju kelawar).
Not wanting to let Mr Darling in, Lin just stood at the door to take the money from him. Lin didn’t realise that with the light from inside her house, and Mr Darling outside in the dark, her baju kelawar was rather see-through. And Mr Darling had the cheek to say, “Jaranglah baju. Tak tahan tengok.”
Gatal punya jantan! Dah ada bini baru pun masih tak hilang miang lagi!