Wake Up Call


A couple mornings ago, I was rudely awakened by the sound of pounding at my front door. If you think alarms are a terrible way to wake up (of course you do, because you’re human), do not replace that method with a really strong man knocking down your door.

Luckily, the guy wasn’t there to kill me, he was there to save me. My neighbor smelled a gas leak inside her condo and just outside our building. In a responsible and well-informed move, she called the city to alert them of the danger. The worker was worried that I also had a gas leak and came to my rescue by giving me a heart attack. I rolled out of bed and zombie walked over to the door. He informed my groggy brain about the situation and asked if he could come inside. I was wrapped in a Dr. Who Tardis blanket and mumbled ok. If he was a serial killer, I would definitely be dead right now.

Gas-guy ran in and out of my condo a dozen times with a tiny beeping box, waving it at the walls and inside my laundry closet. He pulled out my stove and waved the box around there. He said my heat was up too high and made me turn it off. I think it was throwing off the readings and also making him sweat. He told me my water heater was set at too high a temperature and moved the knob a bit (that didn’t impact the leak, he was just concerned about my utilities bill and dry skin). Gas-guy was here so long the battery in his truck died and he had to call a tow truck for a jump. It was a serious gas leak situation.

Because I am mature and also filled with anxiety, I asked him all the important questions one must ask in this kind of situation:

  1. Will I die in a fiery explosion? (Answer: No, the levels are not high enough. Yet.)
  2. My carbon monoxide detector didn’t alert me to this dangerous situation, so it’s useless and I should just throw it away, right? (Answer: Something about carbon monoxide only occurring when metals are burned. I didn’t understand any of it.)
  3. Are you really sure I won’t die in a fiery explosion? (Answer: You won’t, but it’s a good thing we’re here, because gas leaks only get worse.)

My new friend was very nice, but he told me the whole situation was a challenge. He couldn’t find the source, which did NOT ease my anxiety about the explosions. He finally decided it was outside our building. Another team came in the afternoon to fix those pipes and I’m assuming they did an acceptable job, because no one woke me up this morning. Literally no one. I was late for work. Thanks for having my back, gas-guy.

2 thoughts on “Wake Up Call

  1. This is an awesome story. I’m glad you’re safe and not living in a gas leak!
    One time I woke up to a pounding at my door when I was living alone in Buffalo. It was terrifying and I was immediately sweating and my hands were super clammy. I didn’t look through my peep hole at the time because I remembered in one of the Saw movies someone did that and got their eye gouged out.
    I grabbed my phone to call 911 and my fiance, who was living in Michigan, was calling me. In my frantic state I thought, what crazy timing! it’s like he knows I’m in trouble! I answer the phone and say just that and he says, Jess, it’s me trying to surprise you! Open the door!

    1. And now I have another horror to add to my list of anxieties—unexpected, through-the-door eye removal. Now I’ll never know whether I should open it or pretend no one is home. I will just have to indiscriminately open or hide, depending on my mood.

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