My September 11th
As I was leaving for work, I passed my mom in the living room. She was watching the news and she told me that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center. I thought it was an unfortunate accident.
I was actually in a good mood that morning. The hot and humid summer had ended and as I walked out the door, I smiled as I took note of the great weather. The sky was blue and the temperature was just right, not too hot and not too cold. I didn’t have to be at work until 11AM, so I headed downtown to where my job was. For some reason I was craving popcorn, so I stopped at the mall across the street for my job and got my favorite caramel and cheese corn mix to take home for later. I browsed magazines in the bookstore to pass the time and a little before eleven, I saw security guards coming around telling everyone to leave the mall because the building was being evacuated.
The mall was located in the lower level of a tall office building and I thought that maybe there was a fire or something, so I just left and headed to my job at Starbucks, which was also located in a high-rise office building.
When I arrived at my job, I wasn’t allowed in because that building was also being evacuated. I spotted my coworkers outside and asked what was going on and they began talking about the Twin Towers and said that the country was under attack. That’s when I knew that the incident I had seen on TV earlier was no accident.
Even though I was in Cleveland, OH, there was still panic in the air. The downtown area was usually pretty desolate, but on this day it was filled with people who had been evacuated from all the surrounding buildings. People were trying to use their cell phones and many weren’t working. There was complete and utter chaos.
It was soon clear that we weren’t going to work that day and we were told to go home. As I wandered through the crowds, I heard that one of the planes from New York had been diverted to our airport. That was when I became even more frightened. It took awhile to get a bus to get home and as I waited, I overheard someone say that the Twin Towers were gone. I thought the guy meant that the towers were just really damaged, but when I got home and turned on the news, I learned that they were indeed gone.
I spent the rest of the night in front of the TV and I was devastated over this tragedy. I had seen photos and videos of war-torn countries and I wondered if the USA was about to end up in ruins. For the first time I didn't feel secure in my own country. I was also shaken because I was supposed to move to New York City in three weeks.
That night, I called my friend in New York, who was going to be my future roommate and I got no answer. I was relieved when I heard from her a couple of days later and found out that she was ok.
As the days went on, I thought that I was going to have to give up my lifelong dream of moving to New York, but after talking with my friend some more, I realized that thousands of people still lived in New York City and they were going on with their lives despite this tragedy.
Everyone urged me not to go, but I was more afraid of being stuck in Cleveland for the rest of my life than I was of being attacked by terrorists! After giving it some thought, I decided that I still wanted to be a New Yorker. I postponed my trip for a couple of months, but in November 2001, I headed to the Big Apple.
Ten years later, I don’t regret moving here. The events of 9/11 taught me that we can’t be scared of what might happen. There might be another terrorist attack and I might get pneumonia and die. You never know what can happen, so you might as well live your life to the fullest. What good is it to be alive if you are not living?