Door surfing

Tonight at 7pm, right after we got home, there was a knock on the door. It was the girl from across the street, whom we hadn’t really met before, asking to use the phone. She’d gone out to walk the dog she was taking care of and discovered her apartment door wouldn’t open with her key. Her cellphone was in the apartment, the landlord was out of the state, it was sprinkling and she was 9 months pregnant.

After she got off the phone with her boyfriend, I went across the street to try to open the door. I messed with the key for a few minutes before deciding that wasn’t helping. The key tumbler turned and the knob turned but the bolt didn’t retract. Thankfully they’d left their front window unlocked so I was able to remove the screen and climb in. I disassembled the lock from the inside, but the bolt still wouldn’t retract, so we decided the best idea was to take the door off of its hinges. The hinges were pretty well corroded, but with a little “finesse” the pins came out, but I couldn’t remove the door from the hinges from the inside. So, my bright idea was to climb back outside and hit the door until the hinges detached. It took quite a bit of force on the bottom hinges, so when I moved on to the top hinge, my strike quickly dislodged the door and sent it tumbling inside. Momentarily forgetting all my high school physics and geometry, I figured I could help the situation by trying to grab the door. That’s where the door-surfing occurred.

Thankfully no possessions or body parts were damaged, and access to the apartment was now achieved. We put the door (sans latch) back onto the hinges and decided that was good enough for now. The good news is that it’s nearly impossible to get locked out by a door with no latch…

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