I had been in the US for about 10 months. I had just started my first job as a speech pathologist. I worked at a small private school and the director pulled a T.V. into her office. There were rumours about a plane crash, then about a bombing at the Pentagon. These were the days before smart phones, so we really had no access to news while working. As the day wore on, parents came to pick up their children early, saying they just wanted to have them at home. More rumours, this time having to do with President Bush's hometown being a target...that was where we lived. Austin.
When I went home at the end of the day, Dave had the TV on. He had turned it on before leaving for work. He stayed home all day. We watched the planes crash into the towers, the buildings falling, the people running. It was on an endless loop that I know everyone watched for days along with us.
Over the course of the following week my students drew pictures of the images they had seen on TV, trying to sort it out in their minds. I wonder what they think now, as young adults, looking back on that day. Do they remember those moments of confusion when they went home early? What conversations did they have with their parents? I have lost touch with them all, but I wonder if they remember the stories more than the event, or if that day is etched in their memory. It is for me.