Imagine my surprise at finding the cat (whom I affectionately call Meow) following alongside a lady walking through the carpark at my block. Meow was so excited that at some point, she was even prancing about like a pony or puppy, whichever you prefer. Following them on my bicycle, I could not help but ask the lady if she’s feeding the cats at this block, and she said ‘yes’. She called my Meow ‘Miu Miu’ and the bigger cat ‘Boy Boy’. Actually I have no idea about their genders ‘cos it seems awkward to go check. But this older lady has no qualms with checking them out. And as she’s been feeding them for more than 4 months now, the cats are very familiar with her.
In the picture above, you see the cat food I gave the two cats. It’s fish right out of a tin, and smells delicious. So they happily tucked in. The other lady usually mixes wet and dry food (kibbles), I think. And she also provides a large bowl of water for the kitties.
Interestingly enough, she’s returning to Indonesia for a holiday soon, and she asked if I would feed the cats in her absence. I happily agreed, of course.
If you haven’t already guessed, the lady’s a maid / helper / FDW. I walked away from this encounter feeling a renewed respect for FDWs. And I can’t help but wonder what it says about us as Singaporeans when we depend on FDWs to take care of our elderly parents, our young, and even our community cats!
Recently, there’s a news report about an Indonesian maid who received a 7-year jail sentence for causing the death of her employer’s baby girl. Some netizens reacted badly, thinking the 7-year sentence was insufficient because the helper had essentially killed the baby with what she did. However, I think that based on the circumstances, it was inevitable something would happen to the poor child, because the parents had relegated all responsibility to an overworked (and possibly, arguably, underpaid) person who is not the child’s biological parent.
“[The maid] would wake up at 6am and sleep at midnight, but had to wake up again at 2am to 3am to prepare milk and feed Richelle.”
Because of the parents’ giving all responsibility to the maid, a life was lost (needlessly) and another has to be incarcerated. *SIGH*
I think us Singaporeans should do more in terms of caring for our parents, our own offspring, and even animals in our communities. While it may be convenient, and possibly even (relatively) inexpensive, to hire a maid, there are certain duties we should not shirk.