NANCY LWOSI MUDAKHA highlights stories of lowly servants who fell in love with their bosses, either by design or default
Call it money, fantasy, adventure or love, but as you read this, a rich woman is nuts about her watchman or houseboy and a tycoon’s heart flutters each time he sees the house girl.
Indeed, it’s said that true love overcomes all obstacles, including little things like money and caste.
When Maria, 42, dumped her rich and famous husband for her houseboy Simon, 28, everyone was
shocked because it seemed ridiculous. At face value, Maria seemed contented with her husband and no one suspected the couple was struggling with severe marital problems.
It all seemed harmless when she started revealing her secrets to Simon and sharing how miserable she was in her marriage. Simon was all ears. The two grew closer, perhaps drawn together by mutual disdain for a common bully. One thing led to the other and Simon found himself in her bed.
After one year, Maria filed for divorce. She was left with their large maissonette, two cars and several millions in the bank. Soon after the divorce, Simon moved in. They have never looked back.
Simon says that ever since he married Maria, they have made enemies and friends in equal measure. Recently, he says, a female neighbour dismissed him as a gold digger in front of his friends at a party where he had been invited. She told him to his face that he should be ashamed for breaking a marriage because of his greed and love for money and a good life.
Similarly, there are a number of cute girls who have been trying to seduce him now that he has money and a good car. He, however, insists that he is in love with Maria and that he would have married her whether she was rich or poor.
Daniel’s case is different. When his boss told him to fix a bulb in her bedroom, he went without a second thought. Only when she walked in naked while he was fixing the bulb did he realize that she needed him for other reasons.
She languorously sucked up to him, but frightened of the consequences, he lied that he needed to use the washroom and fled. Of course he wasn’t surprised when she unceremoniously sacked him the following morning.
Stella, a banker, doesn’t think it’s a big deal. For her, married women who befriend their houseboys and watchmen are simply lonely and emotionally and sexually neglected and are looking for some love and attention.
She should know. She once found herself deeply involved with her watchman who was always ready to listen and empathise on the many nights she quarreled with her husband. He seemed to understand her better than her husband. She nearly fell in love with him.
When she, however, started attending counseling sessions in her church, she decided to save her marriage. Looking back, she understands why and how these things actually happen.
She, however, cautions women against breaking their marriages for illusions, and men against ignoring their wives in search of money.
But while some houseboys get shocked when the woman of the house falls in love with them, for some sly ones, it is a pre-planned activity that simply falls into place.
Jeff sat for his KCSE exam in 2005 and scored a ‘B’. When he came to live with his well-off uncle in Nairobi, he had dreams of pursuing a career in journalism and eventually getting a nice job with one of the big media firms. But two years down the line, he had been converted into his uncle’s houseboy with hopes of ever joining college dwindling by the day.
Over time, he noticed their rich male neighbours hardly spent time in their homes and their wives seemed a miserable lot. Whenever he complimented them on how smart they were or how nice their perfume was, he was amazed at how much his simple comments were appreciated. In no time, they would start buying little gifts and send him funny text messages at weird hours of the night. Whenever they gave him lifts in their cars, he could swear they deliberately ‘sat carelessly’ and seemed restless.
They would call him often to perform simple tasks whenever they were alone at home. Matters boiled when one casually asked him to impregnate her, alleging her husband was either impotent or too busy for the job at hand
So far Jeff has fathered five children with three different women who continue to support him financially. The children live with their mothers and their husbands are clueless about the genetic pool invasion in their homes.
Recently, one of the women employed him in her office and he moved out of his uncle’s house and rented a one bed-roomed house in Umoja estate where he currently lives. He says he is proud of himself because he has made several busy or infertile men to be called fathers and spared several couples the heartache of divorce. He is, however, searching for a rich lonely woman to marry.
But this scenario is the same with husbands who get lonely when their wives become too busy pursuing academic and career interests. Moses says his house girl is humble and available for all his needs, unlike his wife. This girl has literally taken charge of the home and knows more about the children and what happens around as opposed to his wife, Ruth.
He accepts that his wife is trying to make her life much better, but he wonders how much longer he will put up with it. He admits he has been toying with the idea of marrying a second wife, but this time round he would opt for a less educated and more humble girl. Like their house girl…
Linda, a house girl, is not just toying with the idea. She’s getting married to her boss. When she started working for the Mainas, the man of the house seemed harsh and moody.
It took her roughly one year to understand the real Maina, but when she discovered his soft spots, life became much easier. Maina runs a business in the estate with his wife who also attends evening classes in a college in town.
Linda used to attend to him most of the time whenever he needed to leave early to buy groceries or when he needed to freshen up and relax in the middle of the day.
She warmed his water, cooked his food and kept watch from the sofa while he balanced his profits and
losses on the dining table. Before she knew it, they were lovers.
Inevitably, Maina’s wife caught them in the act. The two women fought like wild cats. Linda was thrown out of the house, but Maina rented a single room in the neighbourhood for them and has promised to marry her as a second wife.
Omwaka, a church elder, cautions that the marriage institution has become gravely weaker. He says that he has counseled over 50 couples regarding infidelity and lack of trust in their marriages. He observes that mostly, loneliness and taking each other for granted makes couples drift away from each other, creating room for intruders.
He insists that every couple ought to learn what makes house helps, watchmen — and indeed any other lover — more appealing and desirable. Such qualities include listening, humility, respect, availability, cheerfulness and simplicity — attributes that vanish the moment the groom kisses the bride at the wedding.