I went to Tesco this evening to get my regular supply of red meat and other interesting stuff I might fancy. But before I took the escelator to the market floor, I went to the washroom next to the food court to wash my face, freshen up or whatever. Who knows? I might still have the lipstick I used to accommodate the gown I wore for last night's drag party. Kidding :D
As I swung the door and entered, I saw a cleaning boy (boy, not man, as he was too young to stamp 'maturity' on) moping the washroom floor. The boy suddenly stiffened, rigid, with his mop clutched closely to his chest, his eyes nailed to the wall, looking at nothing.
Oh-kay..... I told myself. Must be the evil persona oozing from me that made innocents gripped with fear. I ignored the boy and entered a stall to continue my business. I heard the boy continuing his cleaning as I was in the toilet.
I emerged from the toilet a few minutes later, and as I wash my hands and face at the sink, I noticed the same cleaning boy hiding behind an empty stall door. He knew I saw him, but made it a point to hide his face. The washroom was still empty except the both of us.
Do I know this guy? Did I ever do anything to harm him? Killed his cat or goldfish perhaps?
As I shopped for my stuff, I kept wondering why he acted thus. And suddenly it dawned on me as I walked past the food court on my way back to the car.
He was ashamed of his job. Very much ashamed I think, that he didn't want people to look. I watched some foreigners; Bangladeshis and Vietnamese cleaning up the plates and utensils from the tables and of course, no locals doing the same job. Young local boys and girls think that such mundane jobs as 'low class' and they would die in embarrassment if caught working there by friends.
Waiters, cleaners, labourers, factory operators.... the least popular jobs among the young locals. And to fill in the jobs, foreign workers were called in and now these people are EVERYWHERE. From your local grocery stores to the frontdesks of six-stars hotels (yes, Malaysia DO have a couple of them). They are cheap and are willing to work for longer hours.
....I don't feel pity about the boy in the toilet at all. The future is not written in stone. Some wise men said that education is a way to prevent poverty and I believe in that. And if you are not that bright, be a good and willing worker, one day you will be paid in kind. Hardworking and politeness are hard currency (in my case).
Why work in such places in the first place anyway, boy?
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