When my grandmother was alive she had a lady come over to her house about once a week to do the cleaning. The cleaner, who I will call Mary, was paid generously and was much appreciated by my grandma. Mary was also employed by several of my grandma’s friends so she had built up a good reputation and was treated well.
In later years I suspect a good part of Mary’s days of cleaning involved having tea and biscuits with grandma, which is fine except my grandma was too old to notice when things weren’t properly cleaned.
I guess you could say they were almost friends but they were from very different worlds and Mary was still there to do a job. Mary wasn’t irreplaceable, nor did my grandma depend on her entirely. They had a good work relationship but it wasn’t like one of those stories where elderly people treat their carers or staff like family and end up leaving everything to them.
When my grandma passed away, we picked out one of her beautiful paintings to give to Mary as a thank you and so she would have something to remember her by. I can’t remember if Mary attended the funeral but she kept working for my grandma’s friends and we shocked to hear how upset and offended she was that grandma didn’t include her in her will! It was outrageous.
It wasn’t enough for Mary to have experienced my Grandma’s kindness while she was alive, she greedily expected some sort of extra monetary reward for doing what she was employed to do and she had the nerve to express this to one of my grandma’s best friends.
We never got a thank you for the painting, which we packaged up neatly and asked one of grandma’s friends to pass on to Mary. I wonder if she looks at it and remembers my gentle and beautiful grandma or is instead filled with self-pity because she was never as special as she thought she was.