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REMEMBERING AGAIN

18 years ago, we watched in horror and disbelief as the Twin Towers fell—and in tears as we saw the self-sacrifice of first responders and the generosity and support from around the world. It's hard to believe it was so long ago, as the feeling of those days and hours remains so immediate. In the aftermath, we ran a two-part report from our friend Brian Bumbery (now with Apple), which we present again. 

Part 1

Dear HITS,
I sit and type to you as 7 World Trade Center is collapsing. I wrote this earlier today. I was feeling a bit better earlier, but as the day goes on, I honestly don't know what the hell is going on here. I feel that the universe/God is on my side, and there is no way I will be able to get to my apartment. Intuitively speaking, I feel like my apartment is OK because the way the streets are in downtown N.Y. is completely different than the rest of the city. It is very much like London... short streets that dead end; however, if you stepped out of my front door and looked west you have a clear view of what is going on.
PS. My trip to LA this Thursday is canceled.

As most of you know, today the World Trade Center was hit today by two hijacked airplanes. I live 1.5 blocks from the Twin Towers. I was midway into my morning coffee with friends, Kent Belden and Marcella Farman, who is in town and staying with me. It has become tradition on Maiden Lane that every morning we gather for coffee to discuss the day, current events and just about everything in between. Today, while we were sitting there, we heard a sound that sounded like a plane crashing, but we couldn't be sure. Soot and papers began flying past my window and when we tuned into NY1 News and what we thought had indeed been confirmed. It was reflex for feelings of compassion to be sent out to anyone that had been involved in the plane crash and in the Twin Towers, and at the same time we felt like we were able to relax because we had an answer. Little did we know that minutes later another plane would crash into the other tower.

Read the rest here.

Part 2

As I lay in bed last night, all I could hear was the sounds of those planes crashing into the Twin Towers and the screaming that immediately followed. I felt at any moment I would hear the sounds of missiles or bombs exploding as they tore apart this city.

As my mind wandered, I remembered that I had packed some melatonin in my backpack before I left my apartment. I jumped out of bed ripping my backpack apart looking for what would be my sleeping pill for the evening. I took two while lying there listening to the faint hum of someone’s central air conditioning unit, thanking the universe/God that I had been given white noise to break the silence of this city.

I woke up after only four hours of sleep still completely in shock and not wanting to believe everything that had happened. I decided that I should try and make my way back downtown to see what remained, if anything. I needed to move on with my life and needed to know if everything was gone so I could just move on.

I set out on foot with my neighbor and two friends. There are checkpoints set up all over the city of Manhattan south of 14th Street where they are checking the identification of everyone that live(d) there. The first stop was at Canal and Church Streets. The only ID I had was my California driver’s license and a rent bill proving my address.

A female police officer, NYPD badge #5502, looked at my California ID which has my Gardner Street address and said, "Oh, Gardner Street, you’ll never get down there."

Read the rest here.

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