another land-lording first!
At the beginning, I thought it was not a first, but a second. However, with a second announcement, it became a first! Good gracious, let me hasten to explain myself.
Yesterday was a very lovely day, weather-wise. I was off to Fairview Apartments to talk to a carpenter about replacing a door on a garage unit. The garage is an old building. The current door is old, wooden, warped, and an odd size. The carpenter measured. We discussed. At the end of our conversation regarding the new door, he set out for the hardware store, and I set out across the parking lot towards my car. That's when the police car pulled into the lot and parked.
That's when my day went haywire.
"Is there trouble?" I asked the cop as he got out of his car. Everything was so peaceful in the parking lot. I introduced myself as the landlord.
"Well," he responded. "I'm just checking on one of your tenants. He's got cancer, and he's supposed to check in with the cancer center every day by phone. He hasn't called for a few days."
"Oh! I did not know about the cancer," I said. "He called me a week ago and thought that someone was possibly trying to break into his apartment. It was just some bumping around at his door at one o'clock in the morning. He was sitting right there near the door, reading. The light was on."
I went on to explain that I had visited this tenant the day after he called. The scratches on the door were old ones. I had not been convinced that there was any kind of danger, or threat to his safety. But I'd sent him a letter authorizing him to install a deadbolt on his door.
We walked together to the door, and rang the tenant's doorbell. Twice.
Then I unlocked, opened the door a crack, and called the tenant's name.
He's going to come out of the back room of the apartment, apologizing, I thought.
There wasn't a sound.
(Dear Reader, is your stomach in your throat?)
"Er...you go ahead," I said to the policeman, and I moved out of the doorway.
He strode back to the bedroom, and returned immediately.
"He's dead," he stated emphatically.
Soon there were two more cop cars in the parking lot.
...to be continued