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Archive: September 2001

Today in History

I woke up yesterday to a friend’s voice on my answering machine. He was supposed to be going to Paris for 6 months, and instead, he said that he was fine, he wasn’t sure when he was leaving, but the planes were grounded, as he was sure I knew. Somewhere in the gray haze of half-sleep, I propped myself up and peeked out the window. The planes were grounded? That’s funny, it’s not storming. My dog nudged me out of bed, and I thought, “I better turn on the TV.” The scene playing out shocked me. The World Trade Center was on fire, then the pentagon. I called my mother, my job, and my husband in rapid succession. I shivered for three solid hours. Later, I told my mom that this was the most significant event ever to occur in both of our lifetimes, even more so than Kennedy. No, she said, he was the leader of the free world, and taken from us swiftly and brutally. Yes, I said. Freedom itself was attacked today. I sat, like millions of other Americans, glued to the TV for the remainder of the day and evening, watching, horrifed, as buildings collapsed and fires raged on. I wept, like millions of other Americans, at the tragic loss of life. I raged, liked millions of other Americans, at the faceless entity which drove such an attack.
What comes next? Shell-shocked citizens, stunned yesterday, offered the answer today.
The sun will still rise, we will still go to work, to school, and to bed each night. Only now, perhaps we will be a little more thankful of the freedom which we have, and those men and women who help provide it. What happens next? We show our solidarity, and we go on.




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