Except today I learnt it wasn't the package. The real estate agents couldn't get into the unit and the cops had to break in through a window as the door was blocked. The odour was him. Dead. In the bedroom. Apparently having taken his own life. The cops didn't say how, didn't confirm anything but the male officer who went in came out looking white and even with a mask the smell in there must have been terrible.
I find this, despite not knowing anything about the person who nobody had seen, all very unsettling. Clearly he had rented the unit with but one purpose. As the police put up their tape indicating, in effect, a crime scene, the gaggle of owners, tenants and agents talked downstairs. A social worker arrived with a support group person(?) and there were whispers that the man, who I'm told was in his 40s, had suicidal tendencies. His brother later arrived, a rabbi.
Intellectually, I know there is nothing I could have done - maybe ring the agent or even the police myself sooner - that would have changed the outcome. And I know absolutely nothing about this person. But it still feels really weird.
All the more so because, while they've removed the body, they've opened all the windows and the smell is truly awful. For some reason like fish left out in the sun. So I sit in my unit with everything shut because that pungent smell of death is physically nauseating and, in and of itself, an unsettling reminder. Hopefully it will dissipate soon.
Yesterday, I jokingly wrote about how I "kill people" as a writer. Today makes me realise how wide the gulf is between fiction and reality.