Posts Tagged ‘Day of Remembrance’

Day of Remembrance

Saturday, September 11th, 2010

Towers of Light

The weather today was similar to this date nine years ago: sunny and mild, with temperatures in the 70’s. That contributed to the disorientation I felt back then: there was a complete disconnect between the comfort and ease of a beautiful fall day and the smoke coming from the World Trade Center site, reaching high into the sky, blowing smoke clouds that completely covered the high-rise apartment buildings to the south. I remember the eerie calm as I left my apartment building with my neighbor and his dog when we walked over to the Hudson River where police boats were waiting to evacuate us to New Jersey. I just remember the feeling of an other-worldliness, like this couldn’t be happening. But it was very, very real. In the days that followed, I had a dual screen on Lower Manhattan. I was staying in an apartment on the Jersey City waterfront, directly facing the World Trade Center site. I could look out the window and see the view simultaneously on the television screen.  When the navy’s hospital ship, the U.S.N.S. Comfort sailed up the Hudson River, I saw it from the window and on the television screen and realized the window view was better. Sadly, most of the beds on the ship remained unused as few survivors were found. I briefly watched the memorial ceremony on television this morning, as family members read the names of their loved ones. But I became tearful and turned the television off. Right now, there is a party boat blasting music on the Hudson as passengers drink and dance. I find the intrusion incredibly annoying. I will go to sleep early and tomorrow will be a new day. My friends in New Orleans, by the way, tell me that they become very cranky and irritable on August 29, their anniversary date. Just being aware that these emotional reactions are normal makes them more manageable.