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Where Were You?

On 9/11 at 7:45  I was driving in to work on the highway .  I was about a tenth of the way in to work and was fighting a horrible migraine, nausea, spots, narrowed vision, the works.  I didn't know if I could safety complete the drive, but I was pretty sure I would be useless when I got there so I decided to pull off, call work and then turn around and go home.  With my head pounding and my eyes wanting to close I knew I needed help to get home so I decided to turn on radio on the way home. I figured listening to the news might help even though all that was on was the financial report.  The big stories were the fall out from the dot-com crash earlier in the year and building problems facing Enron.  The full size of the Enron scandal would not be really known till later in October but by August there were already rumblings. It might have been 7:58 because that is when they usually talk about the traffic and so I was mildly surprised when the news caster came on instead and calmly said there are reports of a small plane hitting one of the towers of the World Trade Center.

I remember being curious, I had visited New York and the World Trade Center the year before.  At the time I thought the Sphere fountain in the  plaza interesting, but considered the Towers two ugly boxes, lacking the architectural interest of the Sears Tower or the beauty of the Empire State building.  I didn't, I couldn't understand what they would  eventually come to mean to me and to every American. 

I got home, changed clothes,  lay down on my couch, took some tylenol and put a pack on my head to ease the throbbing and turned on the TV low to see if there was anymore about the small plane. There was a newscaster on and the two Towers in the background it was 8:03 and I saw the second plane hit.  I was not a small plane. From that moment on I was glued to the TV, if I wasn't IMing friends in NY to see if they were ok. I remember the horror and the pain, I didn't know if it was the migraine or what I was seeing on TV  that made me feel sick.   I think it was a loss of innocence that I didn't even know I had, an innocence that my Parents and Grandparents had lost during the attack on Pearl Harbor, but that somehow the Nation had managed to regain in the the intervening years.  Everything seemedto change that day as if 9/11 was a punctuation mark to the many different economic woes the country had seen in the last decade.  Not even Oklahoma city had the same impact.  With 9/11 future no longer seemed to be what it used to be anymore; it was as if the words of the Steinman song were prophetic,

Coming up on the 10th anniversary I can't look at those old photos of the World Trade Center Sphere with out wanting to cry, all I can see is how it looked afterward.    I know I will never forget even as I pray that the children born since 9/11 can again have that innocence and belief in the sanctity of our homeland and and unlike our generation and those that came before for us they never have to lose it.

Where were you on 9/11?


I never knew so many bad times
Could follow me so mercilessly
It's almost surreal
All the pain that I feel
The future ain't what it used to be


It doesn't matter what they're thinking
It doesn't matter what they're thinking of me
It's always so cold
I'm to young to be old
The future ain't what it used to be


Were there ever any stars in the sky
Did the sun ever shine so bright?
Do you have any dreams I could borrow
Just to get me through the lonely night?
Is there anything left to hold on to
When the rivers wash it all away?
Is there anyone left to hold on to
Is there anything left I can say?


Say a prayer for the falling angels
Stem the tide of the rising waters
Toll a bell for the broken hearted
Burn a torch for your sons and daughters
The endless night has got a hold of me
Dark days are pulling me forward
And all the tears are washing over me-
I'm crying, lost forever-
In a future that ain't what it used to be
No more no more no more


It's like a storm that's never ending
It's like a shadow on the land and the sea
There's nothing so sad as
A tomorrow gone bad
The future ain't what it used to be


Some days I feel so numb and empty
And those would be the good days for me
Nothing gets to me now
Unless I'm thinking of how
The future ain't what it used to be


Is there anything left to hold on to
When the rivers wash it all away?
Is there anyone left to hold on to
Is there anything left I can say?


Say a prayer for the falling angels
Stem the tide of the rising waters
Toll a bell for the broken hearted
Burn a torch for your sons and daughters
The endless night has got a hold of me
Dark days are pulling me forward
And all the tears are washing over me-
I'm crying, lost forever-
In a future that ain't what it used to be
No more no more no more


The future just ain't what it used to be
It's never gonna be like it was
The future just ain't what it used to be
I wish it wouldn't come but it does
I wish it wouldn't come but it always does
Jim Steinman

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
seesmooshrun
Sep. 12th, 2011 02:03 am (UTC)
It's never gonna be like it was...

History will tell whether we lost more that day than we gained. I know have some understanding of how my parents must have felt after Pearl Harbor. But thank you for posting your memories, it spurred me to write down a few paltry thoughts of my own. ::hugs::
zazreil
Sep. 13th, 2011 12:46 pm (UTC)
You did a very nice write up, for a day that should be remembered

Isn't that song eerily accurate for the last 10 years? Especially when you factor in the people who leapt from the tower, Hurricane Katrina, the Middle Eastern wars and all the economic stupidity from Enron to the Housing Crises ?

Zaz
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )