October 4th ~ 9/11 Memorial
I was sound asleep when the phone rang. Hearing my Mother-in-Law’s voice on the end of the line brought me to a quick focus. “Turn on your TV” she instructed. An airplane had just struck the World Trade Center in New York City.
I’m betting that most of you can remember exactly where you were and what you were doing on September 11th, 2001.
We spent the better part of that day glued to our television as another airplane slammed into the second tower, the third hijacked plane flew into the Pentagon and the fourth and final plane was crashed into a field in Pennsylvania.
Visiting the memorial site was the number one thing on my list of things to do while in New York City.
Taking the subway just around the corner from our hotel brought us right to the doorstep. Exiting through the Oculus was an experience all by itself. This shiny new winged structure is both a transportation hub and a high-end shopping complex.
The 9/11 Memorial site can not help but bring up strong emotions. We had the opportunity to speak with a volunteer as we overlooked the water flowing into the pool. He had been in upper Manhattan when the first plane struck. He lost five friends that day. It was at that point that I started to tear up and could no longer speak. I tapped my hand over my heart at the only gesture I could make.
One World Trade Center aka Freedom Tower looms over the pools.
The museum next door is so well done. There is a historical section which documents before, during and after 9/11 as well as a memorial exhibition.
Be sure to allow extra time. They say that the average visit is two hours. We were inside for four hours and I would probably have spent longer had they not closed the place.
There is an auditorium upstairs where we watched two excellent films. My favorite was called Facing Crisis: America Under Attack which features Condoleezza Rice, Mayor Giuliani and then President George Bush talking about that day and how events unfolded from their perspective.
When we exited the building, it was well after dark so we got to see the memorial all lit up. Both day and night views are memorable.
GRATITUDE MOMENT: Today I am grateful that we had plenty of time to truly experience both the memorial and museum. They are worthy of your full, unhurried attention to give the site, the history and the victims their due respect.