It’s been five years.
My, how the world has changed.
Five years ago today, I would have been in my second year of university (of the first go-round). I still remember where I was on that day.
I woke up in the morning, awoken by my alarm clock radio, as I was on every school day. I remember hearing the DJ, speaking about hijacked planes, but in the haze and fatigue, not paying any attention to it.
I showered, had breakfast, and took the train up to campus, barely paying any heed to any frantic conversation or expressions of shock or disbelief. Thus far, it was a day, like any other.
I took transit up to the university, and started the walk across to the building where my first class was, not seeing a difference, an uncertainty in the air. I didn’t know what had happened. I didn’t know the fear, the uncertainty, the sickness of knowledge.
I would, soon enough.
Everywhere on campus, there were televisions set up in open areas, with students clustered around them. I paid it no heed initially, until I kept seeing them. Curiousity being the animal it was, I was drawn to it, as a moth to flame.
I watched, listened, heard the mumbled conversation, saw the smoke coming from the towers, the Pentagon. Later, I heard the story of the plane that was crashed in Pennsylvania, as talking heads speculated on their likely target that didn’t get hit: the White House.
I remember walking away, feeling numb. I went home, unable to focus. Who would do this? Why did it happen?
The rest of the day, I watched the news (an event without precedent), learning as much as I could about what happened. It was as if I needed to confirm it, that it wasn’t some kind of surreal dream. These things didn’t happen. Not here. Not in this world. But it did.
Look at where we were five years ago. And look at where we are now. Do we remember?