Turn on the radio

Date Submitted: 07/01/2002
Author Info: Vanessa (North Canterbury, New Zealand) 
Occupation: Administrative
Lived in NY on 9.11.01?: No
Knew someone who perished?: No

September 11 2001, a warm spring morning in a small country town in New Zealand. I was up early and preparing to go to work. About to leave, my mother called out to me “have you listened to the news this morning”? to which I replied “no”. I never gave it a thought as I rarely have time to listen to the news before work. “Well turn on the radio” she persisted, “why”? I asked. “just turn on the news, something big has happened” she said. Thinking that it was nothing I said I didn’t have time and headed out the door. As I was driving to work I began to feel somewhat curious as to what was so important. I turned my radio on in the car and tuned into a news station….I listened carefully to the broadcaster but didn’t really clearly understand what was happeing until I got to work and tuned into a 24 hr news station…I began to understand what had happened but was in disbelief. My employers happend to be away on this day so I was in the office alone with no one to talk to or ask questions of. I rang my sister at work and said I needed to talk to someone about what I’d heard. She works in a busy retail store and said she couldn’t believe the somber mood that had descended over the entire city….she said everyone was glued to radios and televisions waiting to see and hear what was happening. I continued to listen to the radion and heard alot of New Zealanders ringing up just hysterical crying that they had loved ones in NY and they didn’t know what was going on….just thinking about it almost makes me cry….I was kind of outside myself for most of the day…keeping the radio up to hear what was going on. A special edition of our city newspaper was put out at midday covering what had happened so far – the first time ever in it’s history and as I read the headlines and saw the photographs of the people of NY, saw the fear and disbelief in their eyes I really did believe that the world would never be the same again.


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