This afternoon, 4 of the 5 PCVs who will lead the Spring Break English Language Immersion Camp here in Morocco’s “Emerald City” arrived on site at the welcome center. After a warm welcome, our gracious hosts showed us into our prepared and freshly cleaned accommodations. We gladly shucked our bags, checked out the gorgeous views from the windows, and tried to figure out the slightly rattle-y lock. I made sure all the knobs turned smoothly and that the lock could be opened with the key before I closed the door. Confident that everything worked, I shut the door gently and tried the lock again.
The bolt slid as smoothly as ever.
Which made it hard to figure out why the door wouldn’t open.
After a few minutes wherein we each tried the lock a few times, our fearless leader, Sprinks, figured it out: the small slip-latch, that should turn with the doorknob, was caught.
Because there’s no doorknob.
We could overlook the lack of plumbing attached to the toilet, the hopelessly clogged bathroom drain, the bug corpses squished against every wall of the kitchen…but the missing doorknob felt like a dealbreaker.
Sprinks crawled out a window, spidermanned her way around a ledge to the door landing, and hopped down so she stood outside our door.
Turns out there’s no doorknob on the outside, either.
She went in search of our gracious hosts, who brought a variety of tools, sticks, and toys that they tried to use to twist the knob-hole and free us.
Oh, some succeeded in twisting the hole, but that didn’t budge the latch.
After the third day of our lock-in (OK, yes, I’m kidding, it was something less than half an hour), they took a crowbar to the door and used it to shove the doorjam far enough over to free the latch. We promptly taped it down with half a dozen pieces of electrical tape, so it’ll never catch the door again. Inshallah…
3 months ago