I walk into the first, which looked like a hallway with bars on the windows from the outside to discover that it was ENORMOUS on the inside. I startled the man away from his newspaper and asked if he could cut Medeco keys (Medeco keys are big time security keys usually for exteriors of buildings and not everybody has the blank keys to make them). The man, standing under a Medeco sign, says "nope." The rest of the conversation reminded me of those scenes in movies when city slickers talk to people from Maine.
"Does that mean you don't cut the keys or the keys can't be cut here?"
"I don't cut 'em."
"Is there someone else who works here who does?"
"Are they going to be here soon?"
And so on and so forth. There was a whole nother scenario surrounding my asking for their business card, how that wasn't his name on it but that it had the number for the place on there anyway. I left him to go try my luck at the second locksmith, a few doors down. Their door was electronically bolted. I was buzzed in to find an old lady and an older man behind a counter. I asked if they cut the Medeco keys and the lady snapped to attention and went to find out if they had the one I needed. The man began rambling about how those Medeco keys are tough stuff that will take anything and he went to this apartment building by the GW Hospital where some guy had a plumbing problem right before he went to Europe for a week and they broke three drill bits trying to get in there 'cause these bolts you have to use tungsten carbide tipped drill bits which are $50 apiece not like the diamond tipped ones which are $75.
They said the base I need is on order, so luckily, I get to come back and do this all over again.