For 24 Hour Storage Access, make sure you have your access code with you.

For 24 Hour Storage Access, make sure you have your access code with you.

My self storage unit in Houston, Texas was the best idea I ever had and became the source of much frustration and ultimately, laughter. Let me explain.

When I moved into an apartment early last summer, I did not have room for all the “stuff” I had accumulated, so I went to the nearest 24 hour self storage facility and rented a unit. When I moved, I had the movers drop off, at the storage unit, everything I didn’t immediately need.

I locked my unit, gave the manager my credit card so that monthly charges would be automatically made, patted myself on the back for my efficiency, creativity, and moved into my apartment. Great idea and executed flawlessly, right? Well, not exactly.

It had been about six months since everything had been moved into the unit. Of course, when I needed something from the unit it was about 10 PM, but since my unit was a 24 hour storage, no problem.

It was when I was staring at the gate that I realized that I didn’t remember my access code. I began searching my vehicle for the card on which the manager had written my code. In the few seconds I was looking two other vehicles pulled up behind me and awaited entrance. One of the drivers became so impatient that he walked to my vehicle window and asked me what the problem was. I explained.

He said, “No problem, we’ll just use mine.” He walked to the keypad, entered his code, and the gate opened. I was not only able to enter Houston’s 24 Hour Storage, I was expected to enter! I did and proceeded to my storage unit building.

It was at this point that I remembered where the access code card was. I had put it on the key ring with the key to the lock for the unit. I had neither. I would have to return home to retrieve them.

Frustration mounting, I headed for the exit. Facing the gate again, I realized I needed my access code in order to exit Houston’s 24 Hour Storage. The people who had entered behind me had gone and I could not get out. I called home to explain my dilemma and ask someone to bring me the key ring.

It was only a few minutes until my neighbor arrived with the key. As he pulled up to the gate, a man emerged from the office of the storage business. He questioned what I was doing and what my neighbor had in mind. I explained to him my predicament and he began to laugh.

He said, “Let me show you something.” I walked over to the keypad where he was standing and there was a small sign below the pad that read, “In case of emergency, call (there was a number). Someone is on premises 24 hours.”

Now laughing at myself, I got my key from my son, opened my storage unit and retrieved the article I needed and drove out the exit. Houston’s 24 Hour Storage had anticipated everything possible, but they didn’t figure on me!