So, I have a question that may fall under the "nice vs. polite" category. I'm currently house-sitting for my sister in a different state. She lives in a condo, with six units and a small parking lot that has spaces for twelve cars. My sister and her husband have two cars, parked in their assigned two spaces. Normally, I expect plowing a parking lot of this size to take maybe five minutes, tops.
Last night it snowed, and this morning the guys hired by the condo owners showed up to plow. I was snuggled in bed, still in my sweatpants and watching TV (because hey, this is the closest I get to a vacation). After twenty minutes - yes, I started timing it - the doorbell rang. I answered it to find one of the plowers, who asked me to move the two cars so that he could plow the spaces they were in. I explained to him that I only had keys for one of the cars, and could not move the other. But there was really not that much snow, since the two cars were only "boxed" in by a thin line of snow, and I said I would simply shovel it out myself after lunch and they shouldn't worry about it. He nodded and moved on, and I went back inside and hopped in the shower.
When I was finished, I was surprised to *still* hear scraping noises (those of you who live in snowy areas know how distinctive the sound of a shovel or plow blade against pavement is). I had been in the shower for a good fifteen minutes by this point, and really - this was a very small parking lot. I could not believe they could possibly still be plowing it, so I peeked out the window (after dressing of course) to see that they had shoveled the two cars out by hand and were doing the same for three other cars also left in the lot.
Now I feel bad - in retrospect, I'm assuming that the terms of their job were to completely clear the parking lot of snow, even around the cars. I've never really heard of that before, since in my state plows clear out the main areas of a parking lot but you're responsible for the immediate area around your car. Still, since they spent in total almost an hour just on this small lot, it must be in the terms of the contract. I feel like they had to go through the trouble of doing something by hand that they could have done with the plow more quickly and comfortably just because I didn't really feel like getting a coat and boots on and moving the car. There was no good reason I didn't move the car, I was just feeling lazy. Should I have gone out and moved the car that I had keys for to make their job easier?