Yesterday was 9/11. I didn’t go on Facebook or Twitter or any other social media. I don’t want to see those messages. Vain and insincere. Odd forms of misplaced patriotism. It’s just too much.
The moment just before impact on Tower 2. (img src)
I seem to have this struggle with what to do on 9/11 every year. It’ll probably forever be the most important day in my life. A morning that shaped the world for generations to come. And I’ve never really truly processed it. Maybe I never will.
I was there. And for 2-3 weeks after.
It was like living in a war zone. F-15s, F-16s, KC-135s.
These things were in the air for weeks after the incident. (img src)
All manner of military airplanes constantly flying over head. Black smoke billowing up from the southern tip of the island, smoke the blackest black you ever saw. Forever wafting up and away from my Brooklyn vantage point. People walking about in a daze, staring blankly at each other, up into the sky, at nothing. People crying. Phones not working. People lost. Children out of school. Buying milk & bread & eggs because what do u do?
More whooshes from the planes overhead. More smoke. And more smoke. It seemed like the fire would never end.
My mom created some make-work job for me me back home just to get me out of there for a little while. It was nice to get out of the craziness for a bit. The whole City was shellshocked for a good long while after it happened. It was a weird time.
I was home for a month. Somehow I ended up getting a job down in SoHo a couple weeks after and you could still smell the soot and the metal and the blood. Burning away for months after.
The cleanup lasted until May 2002. (img src)
I can still recall that smell in my nose to this day. I hope I never smell it again.
God bless the 8 million or so of us that actually lived through that day in The City.