I am so sick. I had a difficult, day, too.
I worked for 4 and half hours and came home only to find that the battery had died in my door lock. I have one of those electronic door locks that prevail in Korea. My previous experience with the battery dying in the door lock is that the gadget gives some warning. They start to beep at you in weird, alarming patterns when they're getting low, prompting you to check their battery. But in this event, there had been no warning. Just a dull half-beep and no response when I keyed in my code - it was clear it was a dead battery, though.
The problem is that when I took this apartment, I never received a manual, old-style key. There wasn't one, I guess. That's easy enough to believe - misplaced and never replaced.
So I was locked out of my apartment. I felt rotten, just wanted to crash after work, I had a heavy bag of groceries I'd bought at the store on the way home. The building doorman downstairs made clear this was not something in his control - the building doesn't keep master keys to the apartments. That's not the way it's done. I had to call the landlord (hah... I don't even know who that is - it's anonymous through the real estate management company through my boss Curt - too many layers of middle-men to even contemplate). Or I could call a locksmith - that's what normal people did. I called Curt, and he reiterated the same.
I got the doorman to call the locksmith - I was feeling my usual telephone-in-Korean anxiety, and while I can communicate in Korean somewhat effectively face-to-face when required to do so, I hate trying to do so on the phone. I don't even like talking on the phone in English, anymore. As an aside, what's with my telephone anxiety, anyway? I like talking in person, well enough, after all. My student Jack recently commented, "Teacher, why do you like to talk so much?" But hand me a telephone, and I suddenly feel like I have some kind of handicap. I hate phones. Does this make me an honorary "millenial"? I read recently that millenials believe important communication should be by text or via social media like facebook or, worse-case-scenario, via email. "They" (millenaials, as a statistical collectivity) apparently believe talking on the phone is a waste of time and is for losers.
I waited about 20 minutes, and the locksmith came, and he tinkered around with it for almost 30 minutes, before declaring that he would have to break the lock. I had wondered if it would come to that. I knew that would make it expensive, since then it would have to be replaced. But I really, really just wanted to get into my apartment and start my weekend of convalescing from this horrible cold I have. I sneezed and coughed and assented to 200,000 won (200 bucks).
He broke the lock, and while he spent the next hour replaceing the lock he'd broken, I did my dishes and picked up some things, and as soon as I'd paid him and he left, I took some ibuprofin and decongestant and passed out. I just woke up. I hate sleeping in the afternoon on days off, because it messes me up with respect to my normal afternoon work schedule. I just couldn't not sleep.
[daily log: walking, 6 km]