After 17 years, 9/11 is still a hard day for me, but for whatever reason I felt the need this year to put my thoughts on video.
I moved to New York about 5 days before September 11th, 2001.
I can honestly say that most of America watching in horror on their TV screens were lucky. They were able to turn the screen off at the end of the news cast. For those of us physically there, we didn’t get that. There was never an “off” button.
Every time I walked out of my building and passed the hundreds of flyers posted of people looking for their loved ones or even smelled the smoke (still smoldering from ground zero) or sat on my rooftop deck (in my building about 30 blocks north of ground zero) watching the air force planes circling the city with NO OTHER planes flying overhead because all flights had been grounded, I was reminded not only was this real, but it happened exactly where I lived.
How I wish I could have just “turned the TV off” on that at times. And because most people in the world were not eyewitnesses to the events that day, there was always this sort of unwritten rule that I wasn’t going to talk about it because outside of New York or Arlington, no one would have been able to relate. When I lived in New York, there was also not really a need to talk about it because everyone else knew what happened and was living in the same city where we were reminded daily of the tragic events in some way. You had to go pretty far to not see some sort of reminder of 9/11 around Manhattan in 2001 and 2002.
Below is my video account of my experience.