BD200 bonus barely enough for necessities
|Vol XXVIII||NO. 141|
By Amira Al Hussaini
Bonus today. Gone tomorrow! Government employees got a whopping bonus this month. A whole BD200 to spend as they please, as a thank you for their dedication and hard work towards Bahrain and its people.
And the workers were delighted.
I bumped into a driver from one of the ministries the day before the bonus was announced.
He couldn't stop smiling, I felt his jaw would fall off. He was actually singing to himself with excitement.
"Is it true that we will get our bonus tomorrow," he asked, drooling all over the place.
"Yes, but it's only BD200," I replied.
"Wow! Thank you. Thank you for letting me know. Thank you. May Allah prolong your life and may all your dreams come true.
"You really are the bearer of good news. I don't know what to do, but I am so happy. It's as much as my salary. This means I will be getting two salaries this month," he said.
"But what can you possibly do with BD200?" I asked, still not comprehending why anyone would be so happy over such a small amount of money, considering it was the first time ever for all government employees to get a bonus across the board.
"I will buy a new air-conditioner for the children. All six of them are in a room without an AC," he said.
This really left me speechless. He will spend his money to buy an AC for his children's room.
After waiting for years for this dream (the bonus) to come true, he will blow it on one purchase. An AC.
But with the temperatures soaring, I am not surprised that is the only thing he wants in life right now.
Two days later, I bumped into another government employee.
"You know what I did with my bonus?" he asked me.
"You bought an AC," I ventured.
"Yes. My seven children are so happy. The old AC was making a lot of noise and wasn't cooling the room," he said.
"I even took them to ... (a junk food joint), where they all had hamburgers. They have been nagging for months. I am so happy with the bonus. It couldn't have come at a better time."
Great. I wait for years for a bonus and then spend it on burgers and an AC.
I don't want to sound ungrateful, but do you really know what I would personally do if I were to get a BD200 bonus for my work. I would flush it down the toilet. But that's me.
I expect to be paid and appreciated in direct proportion to the work I do, and I certainly am worth more than BD200!
At least I think so.