During the time that A was here visiting from Mexico, we went on a LOT of adventures. One of them was to go to the 9/11 Memorial in NYC.
Naturally, that meant an early morning for us… To be honest, I almost didn’t go on this trip because it was the day after we had gone to my former hometown. All I really wanted to do was stay in bed, and away from people.
But, because I had made a promise I put on a happy face and trudged into the car. We took the train into Grand Central and after a quick stop for pizza, we grabbed a cab down to the memorial. I had purchased the tickets earlier in the week, and I highly recommend that you do so should you ever go. If you already have tickets, you will bypass a huge line and go right in. They also only sell a certain number of spots each hour and you are not guaranteed admission if you buy them at the door.
I had been to the memorial infinity pools before, and they are just stunning. They span the perimeter of what would have been the buildings and amongst the two are the names of all of the people who perished on that day. You can see how the names are engraved on the edges there.
I had not had the opportunity to go to the museum however and did not realize that it’s actually seven stories below the earth. The base of the museum is actually where the footings of the two buildings were, and you can see the bottoms of the infinity pools.
Under the south tower, the museum is dedicated to memories of all the people who perished that day. There is a room with photos of each victim, and there is memorabilia provided by the families. They have large screens where you can look at a person and see more pictures of them in their time on earth. Family members give audio stories about them as well.
Under the north tower is the history museum. It’s set up in a timeline from 8:30 am on September 11, 2001, to present day. I have to say that setting it up that way was very powerful in my opinion. For me, it brought me back to sitting in my advanced bio class second period. Our Spanish teacher burst into the room and yelled at my teacher to turn on the TV because the world trade center had been attacked. I didn’t know what that was, or what it would mean.
Going through the exhibit as an adult was looking at it through a different lens. It provided me a new depth of understanding of what that day was like for those that lived it, and how truly my world changed that day. I was also visiting with two women who were only toddlers when the incident occurred and they were experiencing some of the things I remembered from my teen years for the first time.
Before September 11, the world was somewhat scary. Afterwards, it was terrifying. I didn’t know if this would mean war on our soil. If we would see more attacks. Security tightened. Racism escalated. Fear abounded. As far as I can tell, things have never returned to how they once were. I don’t think they ever will.
I do my best to put out positive energy and love into the world every day. I’m not always successful, but I’ll always try.