September 11, 2012
Of course I remember it like it was yesterday. I'm sure most people do. I was at work and I got a call from Margo. It was 9:10 AM. I was on a break in the kitchen and went out to answer the phone. She wanted to make sure I was at work because she knew I would go to Manhattan any chance I could get. She told me a plane had hit the World Trade Center. But there was not a lot of information at the time. I went to tell my colleagues and we all went into the only room with a TV. The horrors unfolded throughout the day.
My kids were at school and on lock down. Our hospital went into disaster mode and we were unable to leave without permission. We were waiting to receive patients from other hospitals in the southern part of the state so they could prepare for the victims in New York City. But there were no casualties that needed a hospital bed.
I couldn't believe my favorite city in the world had been the target of terrorists. But that is simplistic thinking. Why should we be exempt from all the tragedies the rest of the world was experiencing?
The next weekend I went to the city. Dave and the kids and I. I never gave a thought to any danger whether from the air quality or any residual terrorist activity. I remember thinking I had to get there and see what the city was like. We couldn't get near the Trade Center but we got as close as we could. It looked just as you have seen in the newspapers. But restaurants in lower Manhattan were feeding the volunteers who were working in that area. And above the blocked off areas people were out and supporting the community.
I have since been to the site several times. It is always bittersweet. I remember the first time we went up to the top of the Trade Center. It was scary ( afraid of heights) but awesome. I wouldn't go near the windows but Josh was small and curious and loved every minute of looking outside. It was like being in the clouds. I think of the times we had drinks and dinner at Windows on the World. If there is a better place, an afterlife, I hope the people who perished there that day are there.