It’s the anniversary of 9/11 and Mike at Unraveling Mysteries posted his, so I’m going to post mine.
I was downstairs, and like Mike, I was a victim of the tech bubble burst. Unlike him, I was not enjoying it. At that point, I had already secured a temp-to-perm job at Educational Testing Services (yes, the SAT people), but another recruiter had been able to get me in to see the NBA. Yes, the National Basketball Association. Their IT department was expanding and looking for a person who knew Powerbuilder to learn Java and rewrite all of their apps. Picture perfect job for me, even if I do hate Bball. So I had a final interview with the CIO in Secaucus that morning and I was getting ready for it. I had pushed back my start date at ETS so I could get this interview – more money, cooler benefits, etc.
“MATT!!!!” she yelled from upstairs. I forget where the kids were, they must have been around because Gilli would only have been a month shy of 2, which means Aidan was probably home as well.
“What’s up, I have to get ready to leave”
“Someone just flew a plane into the Twin Towers” At this point, I thought it was just a plane crash. I ran upstairs and watched in horror as I saw smoke pouring out of the building. I was calling my recruiter when the second plane slammed into the other tower. He picked up, said they were evacuating, and hung up.
We sat there and watched the coverage on TV for hours, getting a little more insight from my brother who is a Volunteer Fireman on the North Shore of Long Island. He wanted to run into the city, but his company had to cover a much larger area of Nassau County, Brooklyn & Queens because B&Q depts all went into Manhattan. He and his buddies were chomping at the bit to get in, but were under strict orders to stay put. I am very thankful that he couldn’t go in because of all of the problems both mental and physical that the surviving fire fighters are going through right now.
To see all of that and realize that it all happened less than 30-45 min from my house brought a different and horrifying reality down around us all. It was SO close. Hearing about the other two planes in DC and PA was just another shot in the arm.
I remember for months afterwards, NY’ers (and that includes the tri-state area of NY, NJ and CT) were all changed. For a while there, everyone was nice, they went out of their way to help, to see what they could do, to make a difference. I just wish it had lasted more than a few months. It’d be nice for people to go through that kind of transformation for no reason but to be good, decent and nice to one another.
Mike mentioned that our Grandparents had a where were you moment for WWII ending, our parents for JFK being shot. Ours is this. Lets hope that there isn’t one for our kids generation.