So I decided to give Rhys the benefit of the doubt, closed up the bedrooms, gated off the kitchen and left him out while we went shopping. He’s more than proven himself.
We got home, and Rhys was in the window by the stairs. Brian unlocked the door. I tried to open it, but it wouldn’t open. My first thought was that he was so excited that he was leaning on the door. I was talking through the door, “Rhys, honey, I know you’re excited, but you have to move…” and I realises that it wasn’t Rhys that’s in the way of the door, it was my bike.
When you enter my apartment, there’s a space inside the door before you walk up the stairs. Behind the door, there’s a space, large enough to prop up a bike. Prop being the keyword here.
Rhys had evidently knocked it over.
Assessing the situation through the window was no easy task; there’s a screen, for one, and light reflecting on a window isn’t exactly conducive to seeing into a fairly dark space. So, using my coat to block the light and squishing the screen against the window, I determined the following: we were screwed. The back tire was wedged against the first step, and the handlebars were wedged against the door. The last resort option would involve, at minimum, destroying my back rim. It could involve bending or breaking something else.
Nearly new, 500$ bike.
The door opened to about 1/3″. So I called Andrew to come over with a wire hanger, on the off chance that I could get it around the door and hook something enough to move it. Brian offered up a tie-down strap from his bike rack, but promptly returned it to the garage when I pointed out that not only would the little hook thing on it would not fit around the door, how exactly did he plan to swing it anywhere? When he arrived, I obtained the hanger, bent it around the door and moved it around. Nothing. It wasn’t even long enough to touch the bike, much less pull on it.
So, a new level of scheming began. Brian said he wasn’t sure whether or not he locked the balcony door. We knew for certain Brian’s bedroom window wasn’t locked. So, two new options now. Somehow get onto the balcony and hope for the best, or tear the screen on Brian’s window and try to get in through there. So, how to get onto the balcony. Andrew and I had attempted to break into the apartment before through there before, and between our strengths (or the lack there of, heh), the height of the balcony and the complete lack of anything to stand on, it was a lost cause (and we even managed to bust a sprinkler head). However, we now had two people to stand on the ground and lift. But this is the type of things that cheerleaders do. Not two big oafish guys. Then I remembered… the shelf.
I bought a shelf at Bed, Bath and Beyond a few years ago. It was rated at 500lbs per shelf, and I put a fish tank on it (they’re damn heavy) and it worked like a charm. Since then, it’s become the ever-touted shelf. We have one in the kitchen too, and… One that Brian bought to put in the garage.
“Grab the shelf, I’ll climb on it, you two will lift me the rest of the way and I’ll climb over.” So we emptied the shelf and Brian and Andrew disappeared around the back. I went to put my glasses in the car (400$ or something when I bought them, good insurance, mind you, I didn’t pay that much, but I sure didn’t feel much like breaking them), and when I got around back, Andrew was holding the shelf while Brian, on top of it, was making a vain and somewhat laughable attempt to swing his leg up onto the balcony. “Get down, what are you doing.” “Well, we figured that we’re taller than you are so we’d have a better time.” Right. So, they held the shelf, while I climbed onto it. “Ok, make cheerleader hands and lift me up.” And so they did, and like a monkey, I was up and over the railing. (Andrew: “Damn, that was fast…”) And………….
The balcony door was unlocked.
So, in I went, moved the bike and went on with the afternoon.
We moved the bike into the garage.