Hotel Sounds

An initial survey upon arrival

the thick, garrulous drone of a nearby truck on idle; the fragile rattle of plumbing; the rusty whir of the bathroom fan, the one part of this room that hasn’t been updated since the building transitioned from surface-road travelers to airport stay-overs; the occasional door of adjacent units opening and closing; the ocean roar of cars, each wave aligned with the changing of a traffic light; that tapping of footsteps just outside; the full-throated boom of airplanes taking off just a few miles away; the clang of a crossing signal as a train is due by; the antique rumble when it does arrive; the bleed of a neighboring room’s conversation, whether televised, telephonic, or intimate; the moiré when several of these sounds combine and yield some amalgam sound, some quavering hybrid formed out of thin air

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