Six Years Later

It was a perfect fall day in Virginia and I headed out first thing in the morning to get everything squared away to start subbing (just as soon as my papers came!!!)  I was in the office of Kling Elementary chatting with the secretary (as the principal, Ms. Cash, was unavailable) when I heard in the background something about a bomb and the world trade center.  I said, “is this a rerun?”  I had never heard of news reruns on the radio but I was pretty sure the World Trade Center bombing had been several years ago.  The secretary hadn’t been listening, and didn’t know.

My next stop was in the school district office where our discussion of the application process stopped when we all crowded around the television in the other room as the newscasters told of pandemonium in DC and how they suspected that the capitol building would be next.  “My sister-in-law works at the capitol,” I said, beginning to understand the heaviness of the day. 

I hurried home.  Paperwork could wait.  I tried to collect what I knew from the radio on the drive back, and ran into the apartment screaming, “Paul!”  Over the noise of the shower he heard the tale and said, “I hope they catch Osama.”  I knew nothing of Osama and explained that they didn’t know who was responsible.

We called our families to assure them we were three hours from the nearest carnage.  It was in conversation with my father that I learned of the suspected fifth plane that had landed in Whitehorse.

When Paul’s classes were over we went to WalMart to watch the footage, and then to Applebee’s for supper, to watch the same footage over and over.  (We didn’t have a television at the time.  Is it okay to admit that in public?)

The story of my work permit is long and complicated, but it officially begins on September 11th, 2001, when the DC Immigration Office accepted my papers for processing.

4 thoughts on “Six Years Later

  1. i remember when it happened. i was at work and i remember having a radio next to me the whole time. my friend was about a block away living in NYC and i couldn’t get a hold of them. it was intense. thanks for this post. love it. hope your day is going well.


  2. My family was living in Richmond at the time, and my mom was teaching at an elementary school. A lot of kids had relatives in DC, if not parents who did some sort of commute there. I guess it was a pretty intense day. They wouldn’t let any TVs be on in the school the entire day because of the uncertainty of it all.

    6 years later and yet the memories of that day are still so vivd.

  3. I woke up to the news. I went to work, the streets were so quiet. I worked for a cable company, with tv’s everywhere, every tv in the office was tuned in to some coverage or another, even the kid’s channels had a banner saying “regular programming has been cancelled in respect today’s events”. There wasn’t much we could do, no channels were playing any commercials, we were losing thousands of dollars a minute, but noone seemed to care about that too much.

    So much has happened since that day six years ago but yet it’s still so fresh and for a few minutes the country is united again.

  4. (this is totally off topic) 🙂 It’s okay to admit you didn’t own a TV, we didn’t either! We were living in a lady’s basement and she’d put a TV down there. When we moved to Oklahoma we were at our insurance agent’s office getting our car insurance worked out when the conversation of tornado’s came up and the lady said that all we needed to do was watch the news when the sirens come on and they would tell us where the tornado was heading. We told her we didn’t own a TV and she said (in a very motherly way) that we can’t live in Oklahoma without a TV–way too dangerous. So she gave us her old black and white TV! We didn’t own a couch either and I remember sitting on a bucket of rice watching B&W TV when I couldn’t sleep when I was pregnant with Jaedin. (Now we’ve gone all domestic and own a TV AND a couch!) 🙂

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