Friday, September 11, 2009

On This Day

Blogging on September 11th.  Kind of cliche but I truly don't care.  I always look back on this day and reflect on how I felt that day and the days following.  It was a very scary time for me.  I was going to school at ODU at the time which happens to be situated next to the largest naval station in the world, also home to the Atlantic fleet of the US Navy.  I woke up for class as usual that day.  It was a Tuesday, my easy day as far as classes were concerned.  I had MTV on in the dorm room.  My roommate had left for the day already.  I was about to get into the shower when my roommate came in and asked to change the channel.  I said sure since I was getting in the shower and clearly couldn't watch from in there.  When I got out I stood there in my towel and watched as the first tower smoked from the first plane crashed.  I was confused, what had happened?  I sat on my bed and watched silently in my towel with my roommate.  We were confused.  Then we watched the second plane plow into the second tower.  We gasped in shock not knowing or understanding.  The newscasters had speculated the first one was an accident but there was no question that the second wasn't.  I got dressed quickly since the RA, my roommates sister and my good friend, had come in at some point and I was still in my towel, completely dry by that point.  I had to leave for class not long after the towers fell.  My roommate commented that she assumed class would be cancelled.  I went to make sure.  My Physics teacher, the out of touch woman she was, still had class, as small as the class was that day.  When class got out my boyfriend at the time came and told me a plane crashed in Pennsylvania but he was unsure where.  I immediately thought of my family and friends back home.  I took out my cell phone and called my parents.  They live outside of Philadelphia.  They were fine and told me the plane crashed near Pittsburg.  I hung up and attempted to get ahold of Sarah who attended University of Pittsburg.  It took a few tries before I could even get through to her.  She was fine, scared and shook up, but fine.  Everyone found out that classes were cancelled for the rest of the day.  Rumors had started by then that the Naval Base, the one that I could see nightly out my dorm window that had a slight waterfront view, was the next target.
After I got back to my dorm we all sat silently and watched the television for the rest of the day, scared at any sound that could have been a plane.  The days following I watched as parents came and collected their children from the dorm to take them home.  Parents that weren't going to let their children go to a school so close to such an obvious target.  Each day the television in our room never moved from CNN.  We watched.  We mourned.  We reflected.  We were still confused.
Today, eight years later, my boss asked during my lunch break if we (myself and Kenda) remembered where we were eight years prior.  We all started to recount our stories, my fear resurfacing eight years after.  I can still remember the fear I felt, the fear of the campus.  It was thick and unsettling that day.  My Physics teacher clearly oblivious to the world stage going on outside her classroom doors.  My boss oblivious to the stories of the others, wrapped up in her own story that she clearly wanted to share, the point of her asking if we remembered.
My generation has a handful of life changing events unlike my parents' generation.  We didn't land on the moon or mourn the death of a president in my generation.  We did however watch the OJ Simpson trial, mourn the first terrorist attack on our soil from an outside force in quite some time, go to war with Iraq twice.  My generation is different but we still can say "I remember this day, back when..." no matter how hard it may be to say.

No comments:

Post a Comment