I was working from home. Daniel had the day off from school. The plan was I would work all morning and Daniel would entertain himself quietly. If he didn’t bother me and I was able to get all my work done, we’d go out to lunch. Normally, Daniel is pretty good at keeping himself occupied. He’ll watch television downstairs or play with all of his cars in his room. However, this day he decided to secure the house; shutting and locking all the doors and windows. I didn’t figure it out until we were walking out of the garage and the door behind me closed with a more solid click than I was accustomed to.
I made a circuit around the house with Daniel sheepishly trailing me. The screen door was locked. The windows to the living room were closed. Akane – our guard parrot – ruffled to life as I checked out the ones facing the backyard. The sliding glass door was unlocked, but a thick piece of dowel rod was sitting in the door rail. Considering how cheaply made our house seems, the windows turned out to be surprisingly secure. Most of the windows have double panes and double locks. The little kitchen window over the sink has only a single lock. I thought I might have some luck there. After explaining to Daniel that he was never allowed to do what I was about to try, I pried the spline away from the screen with my little finger. I peeled enough away to get at the pull tabs that allow you to take the screen out of the window frame. However, even the single lock turned out to be pretty rattle proof.
“We could just throw a rock and break a window,” Daniel suggested. That was true, but we were handicapped by the fact we owned the home. Unlike a burglar, I had to be concerned with entering without breaking as I would end up paying for it all. However, time was running out. I had to catch a plane. Meka was still at school in DeKalb. I could see my cell phone on the kitchen counter next to my keys, taunting me. Finally, I told Daniel to wait in the backyard. I walked into the garage and closed the door behind me. The inside door to our pantry is up two stairs and that side of the garage is a mess. I wasn’t going to be able to get much of a running start to hit the door with my shoulder. I did some deep knee bends instead and tried to stretch out like I was running a race. I took a deep breath, hoped the door didn’t have a deadbolt style lock and gave it a kick like they do on the cop shows on TV. It moved slightly. Two more kicks and there was a loud crack as the wood gave way.
I have never had the motive or the opportunity to kick a door down before. I have to admit it was pretty cool. It worked (almost) like it does in the movies. That sense of satisfaction I felt with myself is probably the only reason Daniel isn’t grounded for life right now.