It was a December evening like any other. Rachelle and I had gotten back from a snack run at our new favorite store (to be described in a future post), and were preparing to watch a Harry Potter movie on Pearl.
“We need to get the apartment clean so I can get work done tomorrow,” she explained, adding, “Make sure you take out the trashes.”
“Yes, dear,” I rolled my eyes as I gathered up the trash bags from the kitchen and headed for the front door. Uh-oh. The knob turned, but the latch stayed in place. We were stuck.
After unsuccessfully fiddling with the latch, we decided to call a friend who was better able to explain the situation to the front desk than I could with my broken Chinese. We finally got through to someone, and she called us back after a few minutes to tell us they were sending someone up. A moment later we heard someone at the door. After some back-and-forth, we established that we would need a little more help. Rachelle and I looked at each other, excited to use the appropriate movie reference. “Call the locksmith!”
And of course, after a few more minutes we heard more footsteps and some more fiddling with the door, followed by some talking, and a knock on the door next to us. “What are they doing now?” Rachelle inquired.
“I don’t know, maybe he needs a good lock to look at to plan his attack,” I replied. Moments later our cellphone rang. It was our friend, telling us that he was on our balcony. I looked out back, but there was nobody there. Then Rachelle saw him. Outside our front window.
Our window, by the way, is on the fourth floor.
Before Rachelle could get to the window to open it, he reached up, opened the window, and climbed through with his bag of tools in his other hand. Which raises the question, just how the hell was he holding on, anyway? Our surprise had barely started to wear off by the time he got the doorknob removed and started to remove the jammed latch.
He soon had the whole assembly replaced and even tightened the hinges so the door didn’t catch on the frame anymore. We got our new key and he started to gather his stuff. I offered him a beer (the least I could do for such heroics), but he declined. Well, that’s more for me, I guess.