While sitting at GR2 this afternoon, an elderly Asian American woman walked in and said, “I’m disgusted at myself”. I haven’t seen her before, and I was apprehensive to keep the conversation going. My curiosity got me, “why?” I asked. Her reply, “I locked myself out of my house”.
Still unsure as to what was going on, I asked her a barrage of questions. “Where do you live?” her reply, “just on the other side of the street.” She described her house and location perfectly. I asked even more questions about her neighboring landmarks and she described the just right. “How long have you been locked out?” “Two hours”. “How did it happen?” She talked about how she stepped outside, shut the door and realized that she didn’t have a key. She has no family in the area and her husband was “gone”.
I’m no locksmith, but I have locked myself out of my house a few times. We started walking to her house and she told me how she’s fallen in the area, how it was cold and how stupid she felt about being locked out. I commiserated and told her my many stories of being stuck outside trying to find a way in.
I made her lead me to her house, still thinking, “what if she just points to a random house and makes me break in?” I brought a few tools and got to her front door but was stuck right away. What do I do? I hopped a fence and stalked her house looking at each window and backdoor. It was secure and it looked bleak. Would I need to break something to get in? I saw a weakened screen, but realized if I took it off, that wouldn’t help much. Another screen was torn, but there was a stick that kept the sliding door locked. Sometimes, you can rattle a window and the vibration will make the stick fall over, but no such luck. Someone set this place up for her to be safe.
There it was, the weak spot. I found it. Reached my hand through rusty broken hole and got a little scratched up, but I unlocked the backdoor and I was in. She looked at me through the gate that I hopped, and I told her that I’d be walking through her house to unlock the front door and a few steps later, the job was complete. She then asked, “how much?” I changed subjects and told her maybe to find someone to hold a key for her as i was leaving, and then she asked again, “how much?” I just said, “Free” and told her thanks. She then excitedly said, “Noooo, thank you.”
I wonder why she came to GR2 to seek help of all places in the area. I’m glad she found me.