Where do you keep the second set?

Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Residential

Just came from the car wash... it's a lovely day, bright, sunny, and I haven't had the car washed in a coon's age, so I figured it was time. I go to a local hand-wash, where I have a 10-pass card, so I might as well get it washed... after all, I've already paid for it, haven't I?

I pull into the line, gather up my miscellaneous "trash" that has collected in the car, and deposit it in the trash bins at the entrance, and pull into the building behind about four other cars, and another fifteen, or so, lined up behind me who've had the same "great idea".

I relinquish my car, leaving the keys in the ignition, to the fella holding his hand out... no problem, after all, where can he go with the car, there are four cars lined up ahead of us, and no way around them.

I make my way over to the office, have my card "punched", and retreat to the waiting area.  I love watching them crawl over my car like ants, washing, spraying, wiping... I gotta tell you, there's not much that's better looking than a clean, shiny black car, glistening in the overhead lights.

I notice, oddly, there seem to be more ants crawling over my car than usual.  Maybe I should put my glasses on.  Hmm... they don't appear to be washing, spraying or wiping... what's going on?  I meander over to the car, and the manager (I presume he's the manager, 'cause he's got a polo shirt on, instead of coveralls, and it has a monogram marked "Manager")... who looks up at me, a little ashen, and asks "Your car?", pointing to my Acura.

"Yep!", I say with pride... "It's mine."... it may be seven years old, but it still looks pretty good... and then I hear those dreaded words.... "We've locked the keys inside the car."   ... "Do you have another set?"  Dun, Dun, Dun......

"Well, yes... yes, I do" feeling pretty good about myself... until I realize that the second set is sitting comfortably in the car's console... inside.... the locked car.

So the ants are hard at work slim-jimming, coat hangering and sweating around my car.  Nobody is washing the other cars... cause after all, they can't even get out of the building until my car moves.

I call Acura Roadside Assistance... I remember those commercials where someone opens the car via satellite.  Unfortunately, Acura is not one of those cars...  I sidle back to the waiting area, watching the assembly line of car washing come to a complete halt, as the brain trust of car washers, attempts to open my car.

Suddenly the air erupts in a cheer of Spanish, and my car door pops open, and the assembly line re-engages, my car moves to the front of the building as the ants are reinvigorated around and inside my car, cleaning, wiping, spraying... (I notice my keys are now hanging on the wall of the car-wash, on a hook marked "KEYS".... gee, I wonder why they instituted that policy!?)... I inspect the edge of the door, and the windows to make sure they haven't scratched my car or window in their attempt to unlock the car, and shortly I and my shiny car are out in the sunlight, cruising along Green Bay road toward the office.

I guess, for future, when I go to the car wash, I'll keep the second set of keys in my pocket.  I guess I should take some solace in the fact that they weren't able to unlock the car easily... it took them about 20 minutes..  But my Acura Alarm system, didn't deter them... in fact it didn't even go off once, while they poked and prodded my baby.

Phew, I'm exhausted... I need a nap.

- 10

Posted by

 ALAN MAY, Realtor®   
Specializing in Evanston Real Estate and North Shore Real Estate

Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate, 1710 Central Street, Evanston, IL 60201
847.425.3779      Cell: 847.924.3313      Email: Almay@aol.com

Evanston Real Estate & North Shore Real Estate
Licensed in Illinois



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Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker
Janisch & Co. - Conroe, TX
Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!

Thankfully I've not ever had that happen with this new fangled push button car.  Where we  go they take the key and put on top of the rear wheel when they get to the detail area.  

Aug 24, 2012 03:08 AM #1
Brenda Mullen
RE/MAX Access - Schertz, TX
Your San Antonio TX Real Estate Agent!!

Too funny Alan!  Glad they finally got your car open and it didn't cause any damage.  I do have to ask though, why is your second set of keys in your console lol :)?  

Aug 24, 2012 03:10 AM #2
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Helping you find your way home.

Jeanne and Ralph - these guys actually have a hook on the wall designed to hold the keys... they just got a bit lazy today.

Brenda - now that is an excellent question.  Wouldn't have been much help, though, if it'd been at home, or at the office, in the short run.

Aug 24, 2012 03:18 AM #3
Amada Slade
Island Realty of the Lowcountry - Beaufort, SC

So funny and well written.  I keep mine inside my house.  I am notorious for misplacing keys and glasses.  May not be much help if you are far away from home but at least I know where they are in the event of an emergency.  Thanks for sharing.

Aug 24, 2012 03:21 AM #4
Diane Daley
Caron's Gateway Real Estate - Northumberland, NH

It sounds like they did a good job not only cleaning your car but also making sure you could move it when they were done... Thanks for sharing your story.

Aug 24, 2012 03:24 AM #5
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Helping you find your way home.

Amanda - sounds like it's time to leave your keys with your glasses?

Caron - I think "moving it" was pretty important to them.

Aug 24, 2012 03:24 AM #6
Doug Rogers
Bayou Properties - Alexandria, LA
Your Alexandria Louisiana Agent

I'm the only one allowed to wash my Jeep. Maybe that explains why it has been dirty for two months!

Aug 24, 2012 03:46 AM #7
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

I love that you can keep a sense of humor about life's little annoyances like this.  Reminds me...I need to get to the carwash.  Better take an extra key with me.

Aug 24, 2012 06:44 AM #8
Sussie Sutton
UTR Texas Realtors - Pearland, TX
UTR TEXAS Realtors - Rep for buyers and sellers.

I always clean the inside of my own truck. No one can ever clean as clean as I want or need it to be. I do take the truck to the automatic car wash. That machine does a good job and I am happy with it.

Aug 24, 2012 07:16 AM #9
Donna Foerster
HomeSmart Realty Group - Parker, CO
Metro Denver Real Estate Agent

Alan~ My hubby has the 2nd set of keys, but he doesn't carry them around unless he's driving it.  I keep an extra set for his vehicle on my key ring, so I'm always prepared.  And yes, I did have to rescue him once.  I still torture him about it to this day!  

Aug 24, 2012 10:16 AM #10
Gail Robinson
William Raveis Real Estate - Southport, CT
CRS, GRI, e-PRO Fairfield County, CT

Alan - Please do not make it so easy for someone to take off with your car.  Keep the second set at home.  It is also disturbing that your alarm did not go off.  I need to get to the car wash as well.  Thanks for the reminder.

Aug 24, 2012 03:37 PM #11
Richard Iarossi
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Crofton, MD
Crofton MD Real Estate, Annapolis MD Real Estate


I can honestly say that for all the times I've been to a car wash, I've never seen that happen. I can also honestly say that I've never seen anybody keep their second set of keys inside the car either ;-) Glad it worked out.


Aug 24, 2012 06:59 PM #12
Jackie Connelly-Fornuff
Douglas Elliman Real Estate in Babylon NY - Babylon, NY
"Moving at The Speed of YOU!"

Hi Alan, My 2nd sent is in my house. Not a good place either if no one is home, lol.

Aug 24, 2012 11:54 PM #13
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Helping you find your way home.

Doug - that could explain things, couldn't it?

Chris Ann - not sure I found it quite that humourous while I was there.

Sussie - oh, these guys do a very thorough job.

Donna - that would be ideal.

Gail - point well taken.

Richard - I'm going to move them to my office.

Jackie - and if your keys are locked in the car, you can't get into the house, either.... right?

Aug 25, 2012 01:01 AM #14
Gay E. Rosen
Julia B. Fee Sotheby's International Realty - Larchmont, NY
As Real as Real Estate Gets!

Alan - that is a first (for me) to hear that... My side mirror was yanked off at a car wash... he didn't realize you could not move the mirror manually but by a switch......  and I hate it each time I get back into my car, and everything has been adjusted for their 2 second car ride.. why is that?  I only have one set of keys  so now you have me thinking...

Aug 25, 2012 01:42 AM #15
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Helping you find your way home.

Gay - everything has been adjusted for their 2-second car ride?  Not sure what that means.

Aug 25, 2012 05:41 AM #16
Dianne Goode
Raleigh Cary Realty - Raleigh, NC

Hi Alan.  My car is only a careless button-push away from being locked at the car wash, with keys inside.  Carrying the second set of keys when I got is probably a good idea.

Aug 26, 2012 12:44 AM #17
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Helping you find your way home.

Dianne - I've begun doing that, too.

Stacey - I believe the car wash would have had to pop for that expense.

Oct 23, 2012 01:22 PM #19
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