China Journal, Entry 4. “Raid”

<< CHINA JOURNAL >> Dec 15, ’15, 2:45 AM

What. The. Fuck.

So our hotel has very thin walls. I was awoken out of a very sound sleep by some guy shouting in Mandarin at the next door over. The guy was forceful but calm at first. Then he barked again, louder and more angrily, with no response from inside the door. Then he shouted and broke down the door. A physical altercation ensued. There was shrieking.

By this time my roommate on this trip, a Beijing native, woke up too and I suggested he call the hotel’s front desk to let them know there is a fight going on on the third floor. I honestly thought some abusive dude broke down the door and was now beating someone up in the next room.

So my roommate calls the front desk to report the fight. Now, I don’t speak Mandarin but the equivalent of “Oh, uh huh, I see” is universally recognizable. He hangs up the phone and says to me, “Not to worry, it’s just the police.”

The fighting stopped. Someone let out a whimper. There was some talking by the same voice that broke down the door, but now there’s silence. Just this weird eerie silence.

Im reminded of the time when I visited Germany with my family. We were much younger. I was maybe ten, and my sisters and I were being loud in the hallway. It was after 10 AM. From a nearby hotel room a very tall, muscular, middle-aged German guy came out wearing – I ‘shit you not – only a leopard print pair of undies and yelled at us, in German, at the top of his voluminous lungs to shut ourselves up. I’m not going to lie, when I first heard the yelling my first instinct was to channel my inner angry German man and yell at everyone to shut the hell up because it’s 2:30. This is before I knew that police were involved.

But even if I did it I fear I’d have the opposite effect, as my skivvies aren’t animal print, I am pale, 5’7.5″ and kind of doughy in build.

I relayed this story to my roommate. All he said was, “Best to not involve yourself with dangerous people like that.” It’s unclear whether he was referring to the former occupant of the room, or the entrants.

I just got up to relieve myself and took a peek through the peep hole in our door to see what I could see. I was mistaken. The fight took place in the room across the hall. Its door is still open. Its contents forcibly extracted, it’s just dark in there now.

Author: Jason D. Rowley

As I mentioned elsewhere, I wear a lot of hats. Currently, I'm interested in VC data, early stage startups, and journalism. Previously I've been a blogger, designer, researcher, startup founder, (temporary) college dropout, connector, occasional branding designer and amateur chef.

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