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zoo in a maastricht hotel room

in 2008, i was working as a translator for radio Netherlands worldwide. one of my first assignments was the following story. my translation must have been deemed too 'poetic' or 'literary' because it was completely re-written by the editor. i always liked my version though, so i'm offering it up here.

When a guest at a hotel in Maastricht told Reception she'd found a two and a half metre snake in her toilet bowl, the subsequent investigation revealed a large menagerie of exotic animals in the room one floor below hers. The snake had, apparently, made its way upstairs through the sewage pipes.

Hotel personnel who searched the lower room discovered approximately 30 exotic animals, including poisonous frogs, a baby crocodile and bird spiders. The animals belonged to a group of four Italians, who were also in possession of drugs and a firearm. The three men and one woman were all arrested.

© Nick Garlick 2017