April 16, 2010
When I moved into my condo, everything seemed perfect. Granted, there was a lot of new stuff, and new-carpet smell and new-carpet lint and just generally getting used to things, but it was all pretty cool, and the home inspector had even checked out my condenser, etc. up on the roof.
Which he was able to do, because there is a roof access panel just outside my unit. He did all of that, pronounced it fine, and then I went ahead and got a home warranty anyway.
A few months ago, the access panel had changed. It now sports a sign and a padlock, and the sign directs anyone needing access to the roof to call the property management company to have someone come out there.
A few weeks ago, the smell of death started entering my little abode. I walked in, and WOW did it smell… chemical-y. I thought it might be my brand-new tv, offgassing. But, no, because I took the tv out and no change. And then I did this fun thing where I would go outside for a while, and then run inside and sniff things to see if they could be the source of the smell. And then go back outside… etc., etc.
W says it smells like mothballs. To me, it reminds me vaguely of turpentine with notes of lighter fluid. I haven’t been feeling entirely well, and it seriously smells.
Oh! And then, it got cold. And I turned on the heat, as opposed to the fan/AC, because it was cold. And the smell started to go away.
So, I called to schedule an appointment for my central AC, through the home warranty people, who scheduled it for a few days later. And then I called the condo management company, so they could unlock the padlock.
And not only did they not call me back, but they then tried to tell me that I would have to reschedule my AC appointment for Monday, because that particular property manager is in training until then, and won’t be able to come out and unlock the padlock. Because apparently, there is no one else covering his accounts for the three days that he’s in training. Perhaps these are magic keys, usable only by the Anointed Property Manager?
But no, because when I raised the point that the fumes were actually making me ill, and that I was pretty sure that not opening the access panel in a close-to-emergent situation kind of meant that they weren’t actually managing the property and therefore weren’t actually doing the thing they were hired to do, they decided to graciously allow me to go to their office and pick up the keys and unlock the access panel myself. FANtastic.
I’m going to go breathe some more. Hopefully, sometime soon, it will involve air that smells of humidity and pollen, and nothing else.