Saturday, April 12, 2008

Hurricane Winds

Last Wednesday the Canary Islands were having hot, hurricane strength winds (but not a hurricane). Our town didn't get hit too badly, but the neighboring city, Puerto de la Cruz, got hit pretty hard, with damage to trees, balconies, roofs, and falling glass. I was at the dentist that morning, when a strong wind ripped through our apartment, slamming a door shut that divides the bedrooms from the rest of the apartment. This door has a broken lock on it, and it has been this way since the day we moved in--you couldn't shut it because a little part of the lock stuck out (I don't know what it is called) making the door impossible to shut--so we always just kept it open.
Wouldn't you know, the wind was so strong, that it forced the door shut, and it was locked! Doug was on one side of the apartment, and the girls on the other, and of course, we didn't have a key (we never did, we asked the landlord for one, but he didn't have one either). To make a long story short, we ended up having to call a locksmith in order to get it open. Doug tried to fix it himself, but lacked the essential tool to open the lock.
The locksmith was only at our house for 15 minutes, and when he gave Doug the bill, he said that we must pay cash, so Doug had to run to the ATM machine. I just about had a heart attack when Doug told me the charge--170 Euros (in US dollars, about $250!!). For that price we could have purchased a whole new door! The locksmith didn't fix anything, didn't put the lock back together, or anything! I thought for sure he must have made a mistake, or took advantage of because we are foreigners, etc. but no, they tell us--that is what they get here.
Needless to say, our landlord wasn't very happy about it either but agreed to subtract it from the rent. Just think how much money you could make in a day being a locksmith, capitalizing on other people's misfortune.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I can't believe how much the locksmith charged you! I feel badly! :(