Tuesday, April 29, 2003

September 20, 2001

It's not cool to love the Trade Center. I did.

I was twelve years old when they finished building them. They were the most awesome thing I'd ever seen. When I was sixteen, I started going into the city on my own and I eventually adopted Battery Park as my favorite area. I took beautiful pictures of and from those towers. I was too young to be cynical and realize that I really should be loving more appropriate buildings like the Empire State Building.

Last Tuesday, my alarm here in Boulder, Colorado went off at 6, playing "Maybe I'm Amazed." I actually thought, 'this will be a good day.' I thought of an old friend, Jay. We had been in a band together in high school. He was the guitar player. I was the Laurie Partridge. We played lots of Beatles tunes. I thought it was time to track him down again.

My kids got up and I got into the kitchen around 7. My husband went out to walk the dog. I decided to turn on the radio for some reason. It was set to NPR. Bob Edwards was talking about a plane hitting the trade center. It was fuzzy...is this a replay of something? Is this one of their April Fools kind of things? Then the second plane hit. Wha? What is this? This is intentional? I started weeping. Scott came back and I tried to tell him. He left for work. How could he leave for work? My stomach was aching. My kids were asking mommy what was wrong. I kept trying to smile while I made more oatmeal.

I heard Bob Edwards weakly say that he thought the top of the second tower had fallen. Then he confirmed the tower was gone. I heard him trying to keep it together. I fell down on the floor, moaning and screaming. It's ok sweetie, mommy's just sad because an airplane crashed into a building. Here's your lunch bag.

I walked my kids to school.

My friends and family and their friends and families are all there. In the end, there were a number of dead people among them. None of them close to me. I wanted to be there.

A few days later I got out some of my old pictures. I smiled and cried with them. I found Jay's number and called him. We talked for hours. I emailed some old friends from school. Guess what. I loved the Trade Centers. I love NY. I love New Jersey. And I love a lot of people. I'm going to keep calling them and emailing them and cherishing them. But there is this hole in my heart.

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