1998 Ford Escort stuck in Park

I have a 1998 Escort with 39000 miles on it. I don't drive it much!
After sitting unused for several weeks, I found it would not shift out of park. The brake lights go on and I can hear a small click from the
console when I apply the brakes. So it probably is the solenoid.
The problem is that after removing the emergency brake cover and fasteners for the console, the console is still attached to the pocket where the cigar lighter is. I don't see what need to be removed to get the console cover free. What am I missing?
Also, the "service engine soon" message now appears even though the car hasn't moved in weeks.
Thanks for your thoughts
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Since there were no other replies, I'm going to take a guess. Most cars have a small covered hole where you can release the park lock. On my friend's Chevy, it's just to the left of the shift lever when in park. You pry off a small cover and press the internal latch. I think it's there so someone can move the car in an emergency situation. Don't know if your car has this but it's worth a look.
Al
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This is a fairly new feature. I know Ford didn't have this in 2000, but they have it now.
Previously, you could shift out of park if the engine was off, but the key forward. Now you can't at all without depressing the brake or turning that hidden lock.
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