September 11, 2006

9/11/01...

five years ago today, i was a 19-year old college student still reeling (perhaps alcohol-induced) from my freshman year of college. i was in kotzebue building some websites for maniilaq association and a few other organizations in the rural alaskan town. in other words, i was pretty much as far away (both in distance and culture) from new york city as i could be within the united states. i remember the summer well, spent with the johns (lincoln and stoops) doing various ridiculous things that could only make sense to 19-year old college kids or residents of kotzebue. on the morning of september 11, i was fast asleep in the bottom bunk of john lincoln's room at his family's house. there was a family room with a tv just a step outside the door. stoops was sleeping on the top bunk and lincoln across the room in his bed. i can remember somewhat groggily listening to mrs. lincoln burst into the room, frantically talking about twin towers and airplanes and crashes. as i came to consciousness and mrs. lincoln left the room, lincoln muttered the words, "wait, they CRASHED into the buildings?" i think, even today, that's a perfectly succinct way to phrase the immediate response of most anyone. the three of us stumbled out of our beds and stood watching the television coverage. i was planted there completely shocked for a good 20 minutes, staring at the craziest television images i had ever seen, mouthing words like "oh my god...", and clothed by just a pair of boxer shorts. i remember it all vividly, like a painting seared into my brain... it was, of course, the singular "where were you when..." moment of our generation. it's obviously not important, but i wonder whether 9/11 will come to replace president kennedy's assassination as the event standard by which all "where were you when..." moments are compared. i took ivy to the airport last night, as she headed out to sydney and then adelaide. as i watched her slowly make her way through the careful security process, i couldn't help but think about how different airplane travel is today because of this day five years ago. and who can even count the other things that have changed... so where were you when you heard, five years ago today?

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2 Comments:

At 9/11/2006 09:48:00 AM, Blogger Chris L said...

I think you meant President Kennedy?

 
At 9/11/2006 09:51:00 AM, Blogger smallchou said...

um, yeah. thanks for that one...

 

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