Monday, February 8, 2021

Day 2

7:55 P.M.

I'm staying at a hovel hotel right now.  My current room is fine, but some of the rooms are way dingier than others.  The first room I checked into on Friday had holes in the wall, mold in the bathtub, and I found two bugs in the bedroom.  They were small, unidentifiable black bugs with little antennae that you tend to find in dirty places.  I didn't mind the dirt or mold, actually, but the family in the next room was driving me crazy, so the next day I asked the front desk clerk to switch my room.

I switched rooms around 2 P.M., and shortly after I heard a girl knocking on the door across the hallway.  I could see through the peephole the girl had two pieces of luggage and she was calling out "Frankie!" and checking her phone.  

On Sunday evening I heard the sound of a door opening and shutting repeatedly.  One of my tics is that if I hear a door open and slam shut once, it's okay; if I hear it twice in a row, it's okay; but by the third time I'll fly into a silent rage.  It's an immediate switch.  So I checked the peephole and saw a guy coming out of that same room with a cigarette in his mouth.  

Around 6:30 A.M. this morning I woke up and it sounded like the same couple across the hallway were having sex.  There was an odd moaning sound coming from the room, along with clapping.  I couldn't tell if it was a pleasurable moaning, or a painful moaning (like someone would make while sitting next to the toilet and battling a case of nausea).  At times it sounded more like a laughing/moaning sound.  There were no words, and the tone didn't vary a lot.  It was just loud moaning, without end.  I walked over to the door and looked through the peephole and their door was wide open.  I could see the guy dressed in black standing in front of the bed, and he was clapping his chest a lot.   I didn't want to open the door because I thought this might be some Shining-type shit taking place.  You know, that scene where Wendy is running down the hallway and she sees some guy in a dog suit giving another a man a blowjob on the bed.    

After about 15 minutes some officers showed up, and they directed the guy into the hallway.  That's when I realized it was the guy making the moaning sound.  The girl was on the bed and she wasn't making any sound at all.  It looked like one of the officers was attempted CPR while the other office started asking Frankie some questions.  Frankie said the girl, whose name was Laura or Laurie, had taken heroin.  He mentioned fentanyl, and said he was on K2.  He was disoriented and not making a ton of sense.  He said he found Laurie either on the bed or next to the bed, but he pronounced it: "The beh--the beh--the beh--the beh--the beh."  He said he went to Best Buy a few hours ago, and the officer picked up on that and said Best Buy wouldn't have been open a few hours ago.  Frankie later said he meant the bodega on the corner.  He said he found Laurie about 20 minutes ago.  (I later heard he'd called 911 around 5:00 A.M. but gave the wrong address.)  

At one point the officer in the hallway turned to the officer in the room and said "This guy is whacked out of his mind" and Frankie said, "I'm fine, Papi," which struck me as pretty funny, given the circumstances.  Frankie said he's given Laurie some Narcan, and that he'd dealt with this sort of situation before.  Frankie said the two of them had tried getting into a program recently (Cornerstone or something like that) but the program was giving them a hard time.  They would try getting into the program, then go back to a hotel for three days, then try again.

Some more officers and EMT workers arrived.  By now there was one officer directing the traffic, and it seemed like he told the EMT workers not to bother going into the room.  There was a firetruck outside, along with a police car, a red FDNY vehicle, and an FDNY ambulance.  The firetruck went away pretty soon.  Then they took Frankie to a hospital.

The responders started making small talk--basic stuff like how busy they were, or how far they had to travel for this particular call.  One female responder talked about how they were stretched thin this morning--how there was a stabbing someplace else and a robbery to respond to.  They were talking about the girl in the present tense.  Her birthday was May 14, 1981.  The officer leading traffic (whose name was also Jeremy) mentioned something about termination, and I still wasn't sure what happened, but then he mentioned the time of death was 07:01 A.M..  The responders kept cycling in and out.  And one point Jeremy and another guy were alone in the hallway and Jeremy asked him if he'd gotten the shot yet, referring to the Covid vaccine.  The other guy (who was rather tall) mentioned how he'd had Covid back in March, and something about his liver enzymes, and how when he walked down the hallway his rate would increase from 90 to 140.  They talked about some of the side effects they received from the shot--how they were fine for 12 hours after but then had some side-effect like fever, fatigue, and muscle aches.  The tall guy wondered if this would be like a 9/11 situation where they wouldn't know the full aftereffects of the virus until 10 years down the line.    

Finally there were just two newer officers standing in the hallway.  They gave off a bumbling vibe, because they weren't sure if they should leave the door open, or if the desk clerk downstairs would have a key.  They tried leaving the door ajar but then it clicked shut, and one guy said, "Guess we don't have to worry about closing the door," and they left.  

An hour passed, and another pair of officers showed up.  There was a black, female officer, and she was trying to coordinate things and get the details of the situation straight.  A female responder showed up, and it sounded like she was from EMS.  She was very workmanlike and was going over some details with the officers, and said "I do have a full day ahead of me."  This was around 09:30 A.M.  She and the female officer both had cellphones and were making some calls.  She put a white covering on over her clothes and went into the room to examine the scene.  She came out, reviewed a few more details with the officers, then left.  The female officer was trying to figure out of a "Transport Team" was on the way to get the body; she seemed unfamiliar with the term, and was wondering if this was a new thing because of Covid.  

A couple detectives showed up.  One of the detectives (another tall guy) had a sarcastic sense of humor.  He mentioned the boyfriend was taken into Manhattan, to Cornell, since they have a dedicated K2 unit.  It took the other officers a moment to figure out there was a joke involved.  I'd heard earlier a few officers say they were treating the room as a crime scene.  A while later the Transport team arrived.  They had a gurney and a body bag, and they wheeled out the body a few minutes before noon.          

I took a nap, and around 3:45 P.M. I woke up and heard a similar moaning sound as before coming from the hallway.  I got close to the peephole and looked out, and it sounded like it was coming from the same room.  Room 811.  I opened my door, crept into the hallway and got close to 811.  The door was being held open by some bedsheets placed on the ground.  It was Frankie, back from the hospital, and I wondered if he would just be staying in the same room.  

I crept back into my room and a short while later Frankie came out of the room with some duffel bags.  One of the duffel bags had red lights on the side.  He was moaning, and dry sobbing, also making some whirring sounds with his mouth like a 7-year-old would make when playing with a toy car.  

It took him almost an hour to get everything out of the room.  As he was leaving, he was talking to a friend on a cellphone.  He said how he and Laurie were trying to make a deal to keep each other clean, and to work jobs and get their lives together.  Right before he got on the elevator I heard:  "I was talking to this girl Maya and was like, 'Yo, my girl died.'  And she was like 'Send me dick.  Send me dick videos.'" 

So it sounds like he's going to bounce back.

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