[on keys]

This past weekend I went to Baltimore for a day or two. I got to spend some time with friends; two of them hosted a friendsgiving potluck on Saturday night that was an absolute blast.

Then Sunday night happened.

The whole thing had been wonderful: flights left on time, the weather was nice, I got to spend time with friends, and I even got an empty seat next to me on my flight home.

On the way home, I stopped for groceries and quickly gathered a few things to make lunch for the week.  As I left, I pulled out my keys...

...and discovered that the only key to my sister's car was snapped in half.

So I quickly called a locksmith that told me it was no problem--they'd have a tech call me in a jiffy.

Twenty minutes later and I still hadn't heard a word. I called them back and was told he'd be to me in 30 minutes. Miracles of miracles, I instantly got a call from the tech.

The tech (#1) told me a different story: according to him it would be at least an hour until he got to me.

So I did what any sane, logical person would do: called my mom who was in Arizona. The instant she answered I knew what I was doing was pointless. What on earth could she possibly do?

After panicking for a few minutes on the phone, I hung up and just started every locksmith that popped up on Google. There were stupid questions, locksmiths who didn't make keys on site, and a lot of "it may be up to an hour". I told all of them that I needed help and put myself on the list. I was starting a locksmith war and the first one to reach me would get the prize: my hard-earned cash & the chance to unlock my car door.

One called me back and gave me blessedly wonderful news: he'd be there in 10 minutes. It looks like locksmith #2 just moved into the lead. 5 minutes later, another locksmith (#3) called me to say he'd finished up and he should be able to get to me in about 30 minutes. I told him I'd see him then. I was nervous: what if #2 just never showed up and I had canceled #3? Oh goodness it was unthinkable.

#2 came screeching into the parking lot a few minutes later in a black minivan. He got to work rapidly, pulling tools out of the back of the van like some kind of super burglar. The door lock was picked and he set to work digging the fragment of my key out of the ignition where it'd gotten lodged. Back and forth he went, trying different angles with his buttcrack showing the whole time.

Then it was time for the worst news thus far: that tiny little fragment of key was wedged in there so thoroughly the ignition would need to be taken apart. It would cost me $300 and take about an hour and a half. Bear in mind that I go to bed at 9 during the week and it was already after 8. Also don't judge me about the bedtime bit--I have to be at work at 7 am & it's rapidly turning me into an old lady.

For a minute we both pretended like I actually had any options but to cough up the dough (and the sleep time). Finally I sighed and told him to just do it. Out of sympathy, he was kind enough to drive me home so that I didn't have to stand in the freezing cold while he worked.

We arrived home a few minutes later and he headed back to work. I turned to the garage and realized...that the garage door keypad was broken. I was locked out.

I trotted rapidly across the street to the neighbor who watched the dogs: no one home. Years of living in Baltimore City had made me nervous about leaving my suitcase & groceries unguarded for even that long so I ran back across the street at top speed lest the two year old next door steal my stuff. Another phone call to Mom and we had another neighbor with a copy of the key on her way. Cathy pulled into the driveway mere moments later, clad in plaid pajamas and a bathrobe. After a big, much needed hug, she left me with the key. Finally, blessedly, I was home.

While I was enjoying a bowl of oatmeal and trying to defrost, my phone rang.

It was #3. He was standing in the parking lot and couldn't find me.


I'd completely forgotten to call & cancel him. So I calmly explained that someone else had gotten there first and I appreciate him coming but I was okay. I apologized profusely and hung up. A few minutes later #3's main office called.

Apparently he hadn't understood me and was still standing in the parking lot looking for me. So I explained to her the situation.

The next day they called me 4 times before 8 AM. Eventually I blocked their phone number.

Meanwhile, #2 texted me a picture of my ignition in pieces and told me he was half way done. I was surprised--it had only been 30 minutes at that point. Not that I would have know if that was the halfway point or not: I may know more than your average woman about cars but I don't know what an ignition looks like when it's in pieces. About 30 minutes later he shot me another text: he was on his way to get me.

After all that ordeal, I was just ready to go home & go to bed. I was absolutely, utterly exhausted. Plus it was after my bedtime. Like way after my bedtime. Instead I got this gem:

"Well I hope we can see each other again under different circumstances."

NOPE. Not happening.

I smiled politely, thanked him again for his help, climbed in my car, and went home.

After quite the ordeal, I was beyond ready for sleep.

No comments:

Post a Comment