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Tuesday, September 11, 2007

My 9/11 Class Remembered....

Today is not only the sixth year anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy, but also the anniversary of the exact day of the week that this madness happened.


6 years ago today, I got up and went to teach my 9:30am Cardio Kickbox and 10:30 Total Body Conditioning classes as I usually did every Tuesday morning. Like most, I saw this as just another day to get through, another task to accomplish, another day of work to complete, and as always, was looking forward to the weekend. I, like we all, had NO idea of the calamity that was to follow.


While getting ready for work, I heard something about a plane crashing into a WTC tower on the radio. I turned on my television, and saw the afermath; a fiery, gaping hole in the tower. I remember saying to myself "They're gonna have a hard time fixing that". I then went out the door and on to work.

The gym I worked in that day had 4 floors, and our aerobics class was on the top one, pretty much isolated from the rest of the gym members on the lower 3 floors. We started our class as usual, most of us having "heard something about a hole in one of the towers", or having seen the first hit on the morning news, but not much else. At around 10:02 or so, one of my class member's husbands, who was working out downstairs, came running into our class, screaming "The World Trade Center has collapsed!!" I didn't believe what I'd heard at first. "No f*cking way", I thought. "That's just not possible!" The entire class of about 30 people went nuts. "Oh my God!" one of my members yelled. We ran downstairs to the third floor where there were televisions all over the room in front of cardio machines, and there it was. The tower falling. Even upon seeing it with our own eyes, it was impossible to believe. People stood around awestruck, some were crying. Others were on cell phones, frantically trying to find out where all their loved ones and friends were at that very moment. It was crazy.

We completely suspended our second class, and everyone rushed home, fear, anxiety and uncertainty in their eyes. I must say, I had never seen that look on my fellow New Yorkers faces ever in my life.


By the time I got home, it was over. Both towers had collapsed. All my TV stations were black except CBS, since I didn't have cable at the time. I sat all the rest of the day and watched the planes crash into the towers, and then the towers fall...over, and over and over again. I must have seen the towers fall a hundred times. I was in a trance. It didn't seem real. Yet, we all know it was. I think I remained in a state of shock for the next couple days.


In my class today there were two ladies that were with me in this same class 6 years ago. We remarked about how crazy it was, how life goes on, and how many people just try to push it out of their minds and try to forget. I will NEVER forget.


One of my clients that I was training at a boxing gym lost her father, a firefighter chief, in one of the tower collapses. I remember how she was in the weeks after, still coming in to work out with me to keep her mind off her sorrow and loss. I remember not knowing what to say to her, wanting to comfort, but thinking that anything I said would be too flimsy and weak to meet the deep gravity of her situation. Funny thing is, I had met her father weeks before this incident, he having had come by to see this gritty, dingy boxing gym his daughter was learning to kickbox in. He was such a nice, gentle man.


My memory of the WTC towers is going to a little boutique in tower (2?) called Papillon. Of some cute little purple shoes I had bought at one of the other shops there, to match an outfit I'd bought at the Century 21 across the street. Of walking through often, from the last stop on the E train, sometimes stopping to eat at one of the little fast food places there. Of visiting my Mom years ago for lunch one day when she worked at the towers. Of flying in from other parts of the country and the world, and upon seeing them, knowing that I was finally home. Remembering how pretty it was to fly into NYC at night, seeing the Statue of Liberty, the WTC Towers and the Empire State building, like miniature monuments on a gorgeous, sparkling, toy city. Of walking past it, and taking it for granted, thinking it would always be there for me.


My heart, my blessings, and my thoughts go out to all that lost their lives, their loved ones, and their peace of mind that day. I, for one, will NEVER forget. R.I.P. WTC.






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1 comments:

SistaSadie said...

Hey Girlie, I remember... I was at work in VA and one of the supervisors came upstairs and said, "Oh a plane just crashed in to the World Trade Center." I didn't think much of it. Thinking a charter plane got off track or something. Then I went to the TV room at my job and saw all the chaos. Realized a second plane had hit, saw the ticker tape at the bottom of the screen stating that the Pentagon in DC had been hit. I just started to cry. It was horrible watching the buildings implode. When I lived in NY, I use to bank at East River Savings and they were located in the World Trade. I use to pass through there everyday by train to go to work. I went to concerts there. My High School graduation present from my Aunt Didi was having dinner at Window on the World. It was fabulous. Yes, I remember...miss and love you all!

 
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