Two of our live-ins were Brad and Janet (I don’t remember their real names, so just work with me here). They were a nice young couple in their early 20’s, who were staying with us during Janet’s pregnancy. She was expecting a girl, and were planning to get a proper apartment soon after Janet delivered.

Janet delivered a gorgeous baby girl, who they named (okay, this, I DO remember) Brianna. For several weeks, they kept to themselves inside their room, as is to be expected for new parents.

Things didn’t go as planned. Brad lost his job, so their apartment savings were going to feed Brianna and pay for their room. We would all chip in to buy them Enfamil and just help them out from time to time.

One day, Estella came to the desk, and pointed out that when she would go by the room to pick up the trash outside the door on Thursday mornings, she rarely saw diapers (the garbage bags we provided our guests were clear). It seemed a bit odd, but not odd enough to worry about.

Until August.

Guests were starting to complain of a foul odor at the side of the hotel, near Brad and Janet’s room. I went outside to investigete, and found a HUGE pile of shitty, reeking, waterlogged diapers between the hedges and their window.

I knocked on their door, and confronted them. They got angry, denied knowing anything about it, claimed “some blacks” were dumping their kid’s Huggies.

“How’d you know they were Huggies?”

No answer, guilty looks.

I told them it had to stop. If not, we would evict them.

And it did stop. They stayed there for six more months, until Brad had saved enough at his new job to get a small apartment. They said their goodbyes, and turned in their keys. The room was spotless.

It was weird, though. Even though the diapers were gone, I could swear the smell never completely went away. I just chalked it up to a sensory memory.

That month, a few of the rooms had developed roof leaks, so my boss hired his brothers to redo the tar roof. I was helping them buck cans of roofing tar up the ladder, and was the first one up.

Directly above their room, surrounded by hundreds of flies, was a truly enourmous mound of soggy, shitty, rain-soaked Huggies. For months, they had just been flinging them up there from their window. As we shoveled them into a dumpster the next day, we guessed there had to be at least two hundred pounds worth.

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