As a NYer, I couldn't bring myself to put it down in words this morning what that day was like.
We saw the absolute worst of humanity that day - and the absolute BEST of humanity.
Fear for my friends and colleagues (I knew 4 who died that day, and 2 close friends lost brothers); and fear for myself. An overriding sense of despair for my city - New York is my HOME and my HEART; despair for our country; and despair for the human race if we could do this to one another.
All this followed by the biggest outpouring of human kindness I've ever seen. NYers making eye contact as they passed each other on the street, taking the time for a gentle word, comforting a stranger crying on the bus or subway (that was ME crying every day on the subway), etc. And not just NY, but a feeling that the whole country was in this together, and indeed, the whole CIVILIZED world.
This is the first year I've not been in NYC for 9/11 since it happened (I lived in the city until 2005, and the last 2 years, I've travelled to the city to be there for it). Seems a little strange. I'm glad it's overcast, not the gorgeous blue sky we had that day.
I took this morning off and am home from work to watch the memorial and reading of the names. I'll listen for the names of those I knew, say a prayer for them and their families who are still suffering, and also a prayer for our service men and women in harm's way.
Please never forget that day, and never forget that time when we were united together.