(Warning. I will now attempt to use this medium to rant about the horrors of my experience with a company that truly blows.)
The reason, however, to the halted situation is not me, but the, by now infamous agency: A1 Domestics. After sending a flurry of emails and calling them for a whole week, I still don't have my money back, nor do I have a new maid.
The first one, as you may recall, did not speak any (or at least enough) English, and I had to let her go. The second one, who was extremely distraught to hear that we didn't have any children and Thor forbid she would actually have to clean instead of being a nanny, quit. Still, this is not a rant about them. This is a rant about an extremely unprofessional company and all that is heinous about it.
First of all, this the dubious tactic they used to ensnare me:
Someone had told me about a company someone they knew had used and liked. This person thought the name of the company was something like 'Maid in Heaven'. Being the internet addict that I am, I promptly googled this. The first site that showed up links back to A1 Domestics site. There was also information on a company called Maid - in - Heaven, but they didn't have a website, leaving me feeling a little iffy (gut feeling gone wrong). In the end I decided to email both companies. A1 Domestics called me back right away. Of course (eye roll), they wanted to rid me of my money. On the phone too, they sounded very professional, asked me about my requirements - my only ones were that the person had prior experience and that she spoke fluent English - and the woman assured me that all of her "ladies have prior professional experience and references." Well, I guess that wasn't true either since neither of the maids had any sort of references, when I inquired about them, and the second one had only a copy of 'her' ID book, and couldn't produce the original for me. For this reason, I'm glad she quit, since I would like to abide by the law, and not hire anyone who is in the country illegally.
Since becoming more than disillusioned with A1 Domestics and their bad business practices, I have done some more research on the internet. I heard about another agency, called Marvellous Maids, that is supposedly a little more expensive, but very good. Again, I googled, and guess what pops up? A header 'Marvelous Maids' links back to A1 Domestics. Bad business practices - need I say more?
So, to summarize, no one that I know has said anything positive about A1 Domestics, and this company is simply leaching on the good service of the other two companies. There might actually be steam coming out of my ears as I write this, since my blood is for sure boiling. It is now evident to me, that my money is gone, and even if they ever do get back to me, apart from giving my money back for services not rendered, I would hate to get another maid through them. Who knows what kind of a person would show up at my doorstep, perhaps someone who only speaks Portuguese, thinks she is here to take care of my ailing mother, and to feed my bunnies. Would not surprise me in the least.
The battle for clean floors wages on. Oh Thor, give me strength.