The Day the Earth Stood Still

Date Submitted: 09/13/2006
Author Info: Jana (Valley Mills, TX - USA) 
Occupation: Other
Lived in NY on 9.11.01?: No
Knew someone who perished?: No

On 9/11/01 I had just gotten out of bed to get ready for work when the phone rang. I saw on the caller i.d. that it was my fiancee’s dad; and wondered why he was calling at that time of the day. I answered, and he barely waited for me to say hello before he said loudly and excitedly “Turn on your tv!!! The U. S. is being attacked-we’re going to war!!! I thought maybe he was joking or exagerrating, but turned the t.v. on and immediately realized this was no joke. The reporters were upset and obviously as clueless as everybody watching. I had only started to absorb the enormity of the first tower being hit when word came that a second plane had hit the second tower. Then the footage was showed, and some of the reporters on t.v. were crying. It all looked so unreal,like special effects or something; as if any second Superman would show up and save everyone. But it was reality, and it was the most terrible thing I have ever seen. I’m not the kind of girl who cries over the news or much else, but I sat there crying my eyes out, unable to stop watching the horror unfolding before me. Not only was I horrified, but I was afraid for the safety of my family and myself. You see, I live less than ten miles from Pres. Bush’s ranch in Texas; and my mom was teaching school that day in Crawford. Nobody on t.v. seemed to know where Pres. Bush was because by then the Pentagon had been hit and he was reportedly in the air, maybe en route to Texas. I tried frantically to call my mom on her cell phone to try and get her to leave Crawford. I was afraid something bad would happen there too since The Pres. was possibly headed there. I was over an hour late for work but nobody said anything-everyone was huddled around the t.v. We watched CNN all day and didn’t have a single customer-which was weird because I was working at a busy florist in Waco at the time. There was never a day without customers!
After work, my fiancee & I headed home and we had to wait almost thirty minutes to get gas. People were actually waiting in line for gas and filling big plastic gas cans as if there was going to be no fuel soon. Everyone was talking about the events of the day-even to perfect strangers.
I will never forget that day as long as I live. It affected me in many ways; and I think I actually became more of an adult that day. For several months afterward I had dreams about it, and watched CNN obsessively. I became much more aware of my own mortality and how quickly everything can change beyond anyone’s control.


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