Shelly was enjoying her new apartment; it was everything she wanted in an apartment—clean, neat, a wonderful view of rolling hills-- and at an affordable price. Everything was fine until she began having some friends over for dinner and they became, according to her landlord, noisy and intrusive.
At first, she thought the landlord was just being picky. But then, she noticed that whenever she had a problem with the bathroom or kitchen, he was slow in responding to her needs and when he did respond, it was antagonistic and negative.
It was several days before Groundhog Day when she knew she would have to find someone to help her with the landlord. She had three friends: Christopher Bircher, who was going for his law degree and cared about her, Adrian Croft, who was going for his master’s in Business but always busy and Jeremy Knight, who was a friend, but had little experience or interest in the law.
Shelly had two degrees but they were in Social Psychology—helpful with getting along with others but not knowledgeable enought when dealing with landlords. So, she needed to make a decision. Should she seek advice from Christopher, Adrian or Jeremy? She liked and respected all three but Christopher not only knew the law well but seemed to care about what happened to her.
So, it was the day before Groundhog Day when she called Christopher and asked for his help. She called around eight in the morning, knowing that he was an early riser.
He answered the phone with a cheerful, “Good morning! Christopher Bircher, here!”
“Hi Chris! This is Shelly. As you know, I’ve been having some problems with my landlord. He’s been complaining that my dinner guests have been too loud and that some of the residents in my building have been complaining. I know that sometimes the conversations are heated, but I honestly don’t think it’s been that bad. You’ve been to my apartment several times and know the layout and such; do you think you can help me? I’m willing to quiet down some the conversations….”
“No problem, my friend. Give me his name and phone number and I’ll have a talk with him. Often such matters can be taken care of easily; once the landlord knows that the resident in question wants to do better.”
“Great! His name is Mr. Blandish and his number is: 555-494-8124. And, thank you so much Chris! I want to do what is right and I want to keep living there. It’s so nice and the view is great…”
“Happy to help, and listen, if it doesn’t work out, you can stay with me for awhile…I’ve got an extra room in the back…”
“Thanks, Chris! You’re a life saver.”
Well, Groundhog Day arrived and that was when Shelly noticed something strange..
As she walked from the bedroom to the living room, she spotted a sheet of paper that was peeking out from under the front door. She picked it up and read, “Your friend, the law student, has not impressed me! I want you out of here, now!”
Frightened, she decided not to stay but called Chris and by the end of the week, she was gone.
It was a good thing, too, because months later she found out that the police had put the landlord in jail for hounding and following a young woman. It seemed that he had been harassing her for a long time and was on the verge of kidnapping her or maybe worse…
And, so it seems that when decisions need to be made, it is often best to choose wisely and with someone you can trust and depend on. Such was the case with Shelly..
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