Sunday, December 07, 2008

The Ghosts of the Nighttime

     Well Company, if you didn't know it I work a second job at a friendly local hotel behind the front desk.  I work Friday and Saturday midnight shift.  Pretty good gig, no?  I like it.  Well, most of it.  I have been having one big problem though.  I have been having problems with the sounds.
     Yeah, the sounds.  There a lot of strange sounds that fill a hotel in the middle of the night.  I am not used to any of them.  And honestly I don't know that I ever will be.  Every sound sounds like someone is rooting around somewhere.  So I pop my head out of the office or the laundry room or the pool room or wherever I happen to be when I hear the aforementioned sound and look around, and I see nothing.  No people.  No animals.  No robots.  Nothing.  Not even a machete wielding maniac ready to stab me just for the sake of it; which is what I am always expecting to find.  I am always expecting to find that someone with knives for fingers and chunks of his face falling off who snuck in the back door and is going to knife me just for the sake of knifing me.  Not for the cash drawer or the key to the vending machine or even for an hour in the hot tub, just because he could.  But the guy is never there.  All that is ever there is a big pile of nothing.  Not even a poof of apparition, just silence and hotel carpet.
     That's the other thing.  Once I get to wherever the sound is coming from the sound is gone.  I am always greeted by silence.  I always think that the ninjas are just hiding around the corner by the door to the basement, or maybe up under the umbrellas by the pool but I look all those places and there is nothing.  So I go down the hall by the ice machine, thinking that the ice machine is always what is making the noises but it too is always silent.  And by then the noise is back in the lobby and I go just a little bit more insane.
     But the noises still always freak me out.  I never know what they are, they always sound like people, but they are always false alarms.  Which is probably for the better because if it were ever an actual customer making the sounds I would probably freak out.  I am always thinking that it is a zombie or maybe al-Qaeda coming for me but I would still be surprised as hell if that was what I actually found.  In fact, right now, I am hearing a sound that is vaguely like a large piece of construction equipment firing up, getting ready to plow through the windows in the pool to come and get me.  And now the sound has changed to sound like the sounds you hear inside of a jet plane as it is taking off, which leads me to think that a plane is taking off from the airport across the street and is about to crash through the roof and take me out. 
     These are the things that run through my mind as the sights and sounds of the hotel at night surround me.  Someday they are going to drive me crazy.  It's not so bad during the morning or afternoon when the TV is on or the radio, but during the quiet hours watch out.  Or the ghosts of the nighttime will get you.  Or me to be more precise.  I'd better go check out what that noise was.  I think it might have been a disgruntled postal worker coming in the back door with the broken lock...

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