First I will say it was the most spectacular autumn day I can recall before or since. I was 45 and at work at a state drivers exam station. We had a large TV in the lobby where Public Service commercials ran on a loop. A co-worker was chuckling and asked if I could believe that a plane had hit the WTC. The first mental image was of a tiny plane bouncing harmlessly off of a massive building. Minutes later no , it was a passenger jet. Please God let there have been no passengers. A few minutes later, the plane was full. Can we use the lobby TV? No, says the supervisor, don’t be stupid. Another few minutes pass, another plane just hit the second tower. Confusion and a growing dread but we kept doing our jobs. Then the supervisor rounding the corner of the front counter, face blanched white, they just hit the Pentagon! What the hell is going on I yell are we at war? I had been working with a customer from Somalia his face is sick with fear. She turns the lobby TV to a local channel and reality is a million times worse than anything we had been thinking. So much worse that it becomes unreal and we are watching a movie as the second plane comes into view over and over again and the people on the street realize what is coming and start to scream and there is nothing, nothing, nothing we can do to stop it. The image of hundreds of thousands of pieces of paper fluttering to the ground sticks in my mind. All of these oh so important documents that now are as meaningless as snowflakes. I didn’t cry not one tear. I don’t remember the rest of the work day but I remember that. And then the ride home under the spectacular sky and I am not lying when I tell you that of all the Autumns since then not one has been so beautiful not one has had color that took my breath away and made my heart glad just to see it and that is why I think of 9/11/01 as the last Autumn.