This morning I was yanked out of a deep sleep but someone knocking on my door, opening it, and yelling “Maintenance.” I didn’t respond at first, but the guy kept saying it and kept knocking on my hallway wall so I finally looked over the back of my couch [my bed] at him. He informed me he was changing out a smoke detector on the ceiling right above me and didn’t want me to wake up and be surprised by him being right there. I said, “That’s fine,” and basically drifted back to sleep. I awoke again about 20 minutes later and got up for the morning. I gathered my clothes and made a trip to the laundry room, leaving my door unlocked as always and my keys and cell phone inside my apartment. I started the washers with my clothes and went back to my apartment and began working. Half an hour later I went back to the laundry room [again leaving the door unlocked and my keys/cell inside], put my stuff in dryers–minus 4 items that I hang dry–and went back upstairs. As I attempted to enter my apartment I found that the door was locked. For a moment I was very confused, and quickly checked to make sure I had the right apartment and indeed I did. I came to the conclusion that the maintenance guy must have unlocked all of the apartments at the beginning of the day, which allowed a different guy changing the detectors access to each one, and then went back and locked them all again. Unfortunately that happened while I was in the laundry room. I checked down my both sides of the floor I live on, while carrying my wet clothes, and found no one, checked both sides of the floor below me and again found no one. Finally on the first floor I saw a man at the end of the hallway, appearing to be leaving the building, and called out to him. “Were you working with the alarms today?” He turned around and replied, “Yes.” So I said, “I was locked out of my apartment. Can you let me back in?” He was surprised but said he would, of course, let me back in. He also said, “Good thing you caught me just now, I was about to leave.” We went up to my apartment and he unlocked my door for me.
I’m so thankful that I caught him before he left. Had I been 30 seconds later I wouldn’t have. I have no idea what I would have done had that happened. The moral of the story is: Always bring your keys even if the apartment door is unlocked.