Friday, September 10, 2010

nine.

early that morning, our junior class had attended the college fair. row after row of college representatives from the surrounding area passed out free pens and t-shirts, trying to get new "recruits".

and so we went, table to table, and gathered all of the free stuff. i mean, i had no intention of attending the college of the ozarks, but hey, a free pencil sharpener never hurt anyone.

after our goodie bags were filled with loot, we all began to part ways, going to our next class. my boyfriend and i walked, hand in hand, plastic bags swaying with each step. he dropped me off at my class, stealing a quick, innocent kiss. and i walked inside, closing the door behind me.

i sat at my computer in my graphic design class, the only girl in the room. it was an ordinary day, creating pretend ads for a class project. one of the boys looked down at his hidden cell phone, and then quickly stood up, walking across the classroom. as he turned on the tv, he interrupted our teacher's reprimand by saying, "we have to watch."

and that's when we saw it.

one of the world trade center towers in NYC had been crashed into by a plane. how tragic! it was obvious that the plane could have no survivors. we commented back and forth of how strange it was that a plane would fly into one of the buildings--there must have been some sort of freak technical accident. the pilot must have had a heart attack. something like that.

while we looked at the screen, we watched the plane hit the tower. but this re-play looked different than the other ones. and then we realized that it was a second plane. hitting the other tower. and that this was no accident at all.
we watched in silence. we watched as the plumes of smoke stretched across the sky. we watched flames licking the sides of the buildings. and then we watched as each tower crumpled.

it was then that i realized we had all lost our innocence.

the rest of the day was a blur. we went to class after class, lugging around our now oddly heavy bags of college paraphernalia through the halls, with looks of worry and tears on our cheeks. by this time, we had all heard about the third plane hitting the pentagon.

the size of the classes got smaller and smaller through out the day, parents uncertain of what else would come. in some classes we sat and watched the tv in eerie quiet. in others, the tv was muted, and we talked about our feelings of confusion, despair, mourning.

it was then that i realized our lives would never be the same.

nine.

nine years have passed since that time. you can ask any american, and they can tell you exactly where they were at, what they were doing, who they were with when they heard about the attacks.

i looked at jonas this morning, smooshed banana smeared across his cheeks, hands, and left eyebrow. and i thought about how different his childhood would be compared to mine. the extra security measures, the terror alerts, the fear.

nine. only nine years.

it seems like yesterday.

2 comments:

Jamie said...

I remember being in Mr. Joenks physics class and the choir teacher came running in and turned on the tv. We all sat in silence.

Cori said...

I was in SeƱora Rainey's Spanish class.. It was a day I will never forget, either.