To remember September 11th on my Mother's Birthday
I meant to call you this morning. I know it is your birthday and I had you on my mind. I was sitting in a coffee shop in South Station, Boston Ma. I figured there was plenty of time to call, after all, what could happen on a wonderful day like today.
I ordered my usual, Bran Muffin, a cup of coffee and the Boston Herald (to readup on the New England Patriots). I was sitting there enjoying my little break before I headed to the second support call for the day.
"Slow down," I heard from the woman behind the counter. She had a smile on her face as if she thought the person on the other line was crazy. The woman repeated the phone conversation, unconciously relaying the info to the cusotmers in the coffee shop.
From what I got out of it, it sounded like a a small plane hit the World Trade Center. I hoped that no one got hurt. At the time I thought some inexperienced goofball flew his private plane into the massive skyscraper.
Then another woman came in and she described it as a bigger plane but not much more information. I finished my coffee and headed down the street to where I was supporting a construction companies IT needs. I thought to my self what could have gone wrong with the plane to cause a craft to collide with such a noticable, unmovable object.
I walked into the building . As I stepped into the elevator another woman walked into the elevator with me. "All those people," She was crying, not hysterically but in shock and disbelief.
I still had know idea what was going on mother, but it was not good. I stepped out of the evelvator and walked over to the usual desk where I was going to setup shop. There was no one around. I walked around until I got to the conference room. Everyone congragated into this room. There was a TV they were trying to get into focus. The antena was a opened metal clothes hanger and there was a guy moving it about until there was less white static on the screen.
That is when I saw it. Both Buildings where in flames. I was dumbfounded.
"What the hell happened?"
Everyone looked knowingly. Everyone understood what happened.
There was an empty feeling inside. I called my wife to tell her and then I called my freind at work to tell him. After that I did not know what to do so I sat behind a computer and started working on the usual system clean and windows updates.
All the stations were broadcasting the event. Two planes hit the World Trade center.
Then there was another broadcast. A plane hit the Pentagon and another plane is missing.
All I wanted to do was get home and see my family. Make sure they were safe, though there was a feeling of helplessness. "How can I keep them safe?"
I am sorry mother, I forgot that today was also your birthday. I forgot that this was a special day in your life that would forever be scared with this horrible event.
It is six years later as I write this to you. Six years have gone by and I cannot forget what happened. I can still see clearly the buildings collapse. I see the firemen raising our nations flag. Every house, every car, every building was Red White and Blue. American flags hung proudly everywhere and waved in defiance to show our support.
I can remember lying, on a hamock with my daughter and my son in my back yard. The blue sky was empty of planes. I will never forget the ominous quiet except for the occasional fighter jet racing through the sky.
Mother, six years have gone by and the sky is again full of planes. The American flags that once flew from every house and car are now scattered here and there. People are once again complacent. They push back the need for patriotism and community. The kindness and togetherness of a wounded nation has faded. I have been in airports and have heard the insane complaints of passangers about the hassel of security. I am sick to think that people have forgotten what happened.
I pray that this birthday brings you love and joy but I wish most of all that on your birthday our nation remembers and this never happens again.
I love you,