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  #41  
Old 09.09.2011, 19:38
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I find the stories all very touching and entertaining, which I thank everyone for sharing. What I find very interesting, though, is that how few stories include the Pentagon. Even on the day of the event, the pentagon got short shrift since it was dwarfed by the coverage of the WTC....but I've always been fascinated how the Pentagon gets lefts out of the picture in so many stories. Even my own recollection, having visited the 'timeline' of the attacks, makes me doubt my own recollection since I know I saw the second tower get hit live...so I must have turned on CNN before the guy in DC mentioned the hit on the pentagon. The tapes released by the Atlantic of the sheer ineptitude and disbelief by the folks who are supposed to be in charge and protecting the country at the time this week is also rather disconcerting...this years after the Russian general who, upon hearing about the attacks, immediately thought it was an internal putsch. It makes it hard to choose between deceit and largesse.
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Old 09.09.2011, 19:50
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was in high school then , was preparing for a trivia quiz scheduled the next day with my friend at our Teacher's house when we saw the news in BBC. It was 6:30PM in India then. Cant believe its been a decade just reminds how short our life is and its meaningless to spend the few years we have hating anyone.

Hope the world gets to be a better place for the next generation atleast.
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  #43  
Old 09.09.2011, 20:59
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was at home with my son who was very poorly. We were watching TV and they cut in the programme.

It was so shocking and made me feel so upset as a few weeks before we had all been in New York and had stood at the top of the WTC as a happy family

I remember the lovely man in the lift and the great girls at the at the top who I spent ages chatting to. I imagine the terror of those poor people in the towers and the passengers in the planes.
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  #44  
Old 09.09.2011, 21:31
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I had just come back from school and switched on my pc when a friend of mine messaged me saying "NY is burning". I switched on the TV and at first did not believe the footage I was seeing! Seconds after the second plane hit tower two... The eerie thing? Just that afternoon we had been talking about terrorists in class...
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Old 09.09.2011, 21:39
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was on my honeymoon. We were on the second leg of a three leg journey travelling gfrom Anchorage Alaska to Hawaii. we were on the Seattle - San Fran leg on a United Flight. The pilot announced that there had been a hiijacking and we had to land immediately. As all the phones on our plane were quickly switched on and people got upset the pilot realised his mistake and clarified that we had not been hijacked but all planes were ordered to land immediately.
we landed in Medford, Oregon and all stood around in disbelief as we saw the first tower collapse on the TV in the arrivals hall. Most of the airport staff were distraught and everyone was trying desperately to get hold of family. We were pursued by several tv crews who wanted to interview us as soon as they heard the English accent but were just too numb to speak.We couldn't get a hire car and had too much luggage to share a car with one couple (we were away for a month and had hot and cold weather wear)
The airport marvellously managed to rustle up two big coaches and we all had the choice to either head back to Seattle or on to San Fran. We opted for the latter and after 7 hours on the coach with the TV on the entire way were given distressed traveller rate at an airport hotel. Three days later the airport reopened and we managed to get a flight to Hawaii to finish out honeymoon island hopping.
The atmosphere was the strangest thing I have ever experienced. While in Hawaii my husbands contract was terminated so we returned to him having no job, emotionally drained and a world very much changed.
I will certainly never forget 9/11.
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  #46  
Old 09.09.2011, 21:40
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

We were at Duscholux near Thun looking at bathtubs and showers, when someone said something, though it was too unbelievable to really grasp. We drove home immediately and switched on the TV...

My aunt had a UN committee meeting in the WTC that day, but woke up feeling ill and didn't go. Since she chaired the meeting, it was cancelled, saving a good number of live, unfortunately not all though..
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  #47  
Old 09.09.2011, 21:43
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was in college in Illinois (USA). Went to the local YMCA to go for a swim when the check in person said that her daughter from NYC had just called and there was an airplane crash into a new york building. We talked about how terrible that was and then I went swimming--we had no idea that it was this huge event. I thought it was some small biplane into a country building. When I finished my swim I got into my car, and when it started all I heard on the radio was "American is under attack. We repeat, the United States is under attack." I stayed in my car and listened to the broadcast--there was so much confusion and panic. It was not clear if we were at war, or who was attacking us. After about 15 minutes, I looked across the parking lot to see someone else in their car doing the same thing--just sitting, staring, listening to the radio.

When I got back to campus it was mayhem in the dorms. I was a head resident and in charge of a dorm--all RA's were gathered. Many students were fearful because their parents worked in Chicago and places were being shut down. My college continued to hold classes that day, although professors could choose to cancel if they wanted to. There was really no official action taken on the campus but everyone was clearly affected. It was eerie. Unreal.

My heart continues to go out to those families who were/are affected by the WTC tragedy.
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Old 09.09.2011, 21:56
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was in Zurich, packing my bags, as I was supposed to fly to the US on the 12th...
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Old 09.09.2011, 22:04
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

Its really a defining moment for our generation somehow.

I was shortly to start a new job and this required me to do quite a lot of reading up. I had spent days studying at various cafes and libraries around Zurich. Myself and my girlfriend spent the day in the Zurich Library. When we came home I was at the computer when my girlfriend said, "honey, the world trade towers fell down." I replied, that this must be a mistake but checked on yahoo which said indeed that they had fallen. I genuinely refused to believe it for a time, thinking yahoo must have gotten something mixed up.

I remember my initial thought was, how can that happen, some kind of architectural fault or something. Shortly after I learned about the planes. My neighbour turned up as he did not own a television, so we sat for some time digesting the news. I still remember the feeling in my stomach... a kind of mixture of fear, tension, and excitement at this big story unfolding.

Of course tragic, it was an event that much of the planet shared together.
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Old 09.09.2011, 22:22
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was at work, in the days when I had my own office and a colleague knocked on my door and told me to switch on the news. We stood together in the office and watched in silence. Was quite horrifying. Then we started asking questions about our colleagues and friends in NYC - our office over there was nowhere near but so many had husbands and kids working there. Amazingly all the friends and relatives of friends in the WTC were accounted for.

I also remember clearly finding out about Princess Diana dying. I was on a hike around near the Aletsch glacier - we were staying in a chalet with only Swiss TV (hence we hadn't bothered even turning it on!) met some Swiss hikers at the top of a pass and they said "hey we were sorry to hear about your Princess Di" and we were like "you what?" then went down, switched on TV and saw news.

Another news-moment that I remember clearly was the Hungerford massacre - it was school holidays and I remember being home at my parents house feeling terrified that a guy could just wander round a small country village like the one I lived in killing people for no reason. I remember clearly being so scared by it (at the tender age of 16).
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Old 09.09.2011, 22:30
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

i was in nyc, my home and it was one of the scariest days of my life. i was taking my baby to a friends house to go class. the first plane hit as i got to school and then utter chaos ensued for hours and hours later. it took me hours to get to my son and i saw some images that will never leave my mind and the smell that was there for weeks later was haunting, really. i'll never forget the stillness at night with no planes and that strong smell like burnt hair, everyone was so scared it was crazy. yes, there are horrible, much more destructive things that have happened around the world to other innocent people and yes the u.s government sucks, but i knew people from my neighborhood and who i went to school with who died there and they had nothing to do with politics. it's not to compare one event with another or say one is worse, but having experienced it in the way that i did, in my home, i can say it was certainly a tragedy and something that really will stay with me. the worst was the days after and people asking if you have seen so and so and going into penn station and grand central, among other places and seeing papers all over with pictures of lost family and friends, searching for them pretty hopefully at first. but, i will say that i have never been prouder to be from nyc as then. people really came together and the only other time i cried with strangers like that was when obama was elected...
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  #52  
Old 09.09.2011, 22:45
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

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Princess Di ..... I was trundling down the passage in the early hours at my sisters house in Durban - to find her husband sitting on the floor in front of the TV with his mouth hanging open .... "Princess Di is dead ...!"
My first thought was .... Oh oh .. the Queen did this......
I was in Australia and just going for a JetSki. Heard on the radio "Princess Di has been involved in a car crash and taken to hospital ... details to follow". My reaction was "Bloody media making a mountain out of mole hill ... she probably had a slight bump and people are over reacting".

Felt pretty humble getting back from the ski to hear she had died.
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  #53  
Old 09.09.2011, 22:53
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was at the AirPort in Linz feeling like a lost sheep. All seemed so surreal. All flights to London were cancelled. Eventually, when the uk reopened the airports, I managed to get on the flight. First thingh I did when it landed I kneeled and kissed London Stansted soil. Secondly I was hopeful nothing would happen on the tube. At home I was still in disbelief.... I knew a new era would start with the hope a new war wouldn't... But looking all the events after that culminating in the economic crisis, I still wonder who is behind it?
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Old 10.09.2011, 11:41
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was picking up my little one from school. People kept coming to tell me something had happened in New York.
I ran home to turn on the tv like the rest of the world, just a few minutes before the 1st tower fell. My child asked me what was falling, I lied and told him it was a movie and switched the channels from then on between Pokémon and the unfolding tragedy.

The deep sinking feeling of unexplicable sorrow has remained intact, even 10 years later

It changed people's approach to Americans.
I was living in a small Swiss town at the time, and there weren't too many Americans around. In the aftermath of the tragedy, people felt compelled to bring up the subject constantly, with kindness and compassion.. but not always.

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..... the only other time i cried with strangers like that was when obama was elected...
yes, me too.... I stayed up all night while he was being elected, and cried with relief.
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Old 10.09.2011, 14:10
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

We were here in Switzerland and after 11 months, we were still taking German lessons. I had received a call from my boss (off work due to a new baby) and he mentioned that a plane had crashed into the WTC - he thought it was just a small plane, and I basically forgot about it.

We were in German class for two hours. By the time we finished, the world was a different place. Everyone was gathered around the bank of television screens in the Luzern Migros. Everything was in German and it was very confusing. They were showing tall buildings (for example, Sears Tower, Space Needle) and what seemed to be U.S. embassies, which were raising their vehicle blocks (big pieces of concrete which are normally in the ground, but can be raised to block entrances). There were few pictures of the towers at the moment, and we weren't sure what happened. We went to the photo store to pick up pictures and then heard that the towers had fallen. We went home and switched on CNN which was showing the U.S. feed directly. Nothing was available on the internet - even CNN.com just had a few text links.

We got a lot of support from our coworkers. One coworker showed me a text he had received - it was a rose made from text and stated, in German, "This is a rose for the people of America. Pass it on to show your support."

Just two weeks later we were a bit alarmed when we heard helicopter after helicopter flying by, racing towards Zug for the aftermath of the Zug massacre.
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  #56  
Old 10.09.2011, 14:20
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

Working in Ashford, Kent (UK) on new high speed rail link. I got a call from a German colleague telling me to look at BBC news on the web. Never felt so bad as since the Belgrano went down.
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  #57  
Old 10.09.2011, 15:27
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

At work. A colleagues said there had been an accident and an aeroplane had crashed, then shortly afterwards it became clear that it wasn't an accident.
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Old 10.09.2011, 15:31
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was by Lake Leman, Swiss.
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Old 10.09.2011, 16:04
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I had the dubious pleasure of announcing the news to a roomful of people at a training day, after hearing about it from the secretary upstairs. At the time I had no idea what the World Trade Center was, but two aeroplanes flying into buildings in New York was newsworthy in itself. As soon as I announced it, I began to doubt my own words: had I misunderstood, had I heard it wrong?

The training day continued as normal - a plane crash on another continent wasn't that big a deal, after all - then I got a lift home with a colleague, during which the enormity of the events sunk in as we listened to the radio. The internet was almost unusable, so I watched the aftermath on the telly, in grim fascination. I felt really sorry for the poor buggers directly affected, but began to get a bit fed up of all the "America is under attack" hysteria that had even afflicted British news services.

At the pub, the general consensus was "Now they know what it feels like," and "I bet NORAID will start feeling the pinch". My Muslim colleagues were worried about the potential consequences for them and their families. We had to start taking security a bit more seriously at school, in case some nutter decided that 8 year old Bengali children deserved to pay for what had happened. My father and I chuckled at some of the risible claims that were made in the first day or two, like the alleged discovery of an intact passport of one of the hijackers on top of the rubble, or the car found in a lock-up garage with a Koran and a flight manual conveniently located in the boot.

Then the world continued as it always had. It had been a pretty dreadful place on September 10th 2001, and didn't get perceptibly worse over the next 24 hours for most people on the planet - with the obvious exception of people with connections to the cities, workplaces and, most importantly, the people who had been affected by the attacks.

Last edited by Dougal's Breakfast; 10.09.2011 at 17:38. Reason: mind playing tricks
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Old 10.09.2011, 16:38
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Re: Where were you when you heard about the WTC?

I was at work and a patient told me a plane had flown into the World Trade Centre. I'm ashamed to say I didn't know what the WTC was, and like many people assumed it was just a small plane which had crashed, until I got onto the internet and saw what was going on.
Even now, seeing footage of the events unfolding on TV, it is as shocking as it was on that terrible day.
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