Monday, September 12, 2005
It was very surreal to me to watch the show last night about Flight 93 on Sept. 11. It brought back all the anger and fear that I felt on that day. I was in Bakersfield, Ca when the country was attacked. I was traveling on business. I awoke to my phone in my hotel ringing. When I picked it up all's that I heard was swearing. My boss was on the other end of the line - just screaming and swearing. It took me a minute or two to figure out what he was yelling. Finally I turned on the TV, to my horror black smoke was pouring out of one of the WTC towers. I remember just being numb, what the heck was going on? I immediately called Derrick at our home and woke him up - I was yelling at him turn on the TV you won't believe what is happening. Right as he turned the TV on, we watched as the second plane hit the towers. Now I was panicked. I knew I was ok, I was in Bakersfield, what is there to attack I thought. My attention turned to my sister in law who works down town Seattle for King County. I called my brother to find out where she was.... It is funny looking back 4 years later. I don't remember all the details of every conversation I had, but I remember the feeling of just growing more and more angry. How can someone attack the US. I guess that is an arrogance I had, or an innocence - I am not sure which. For some reason my boss called me back and told me we had to go to work that day. I remember thinking you are an idiot, no one is going to be working. (well he was Canadian, more on working for a Canadian company later - I have worked for 3 I have a strong opinion, I will spare you the details now!!) Any way - - So I went to work, at the time I was working for a company that went in and trained sales people at newspapers on how to sell ads on line. So as I walked into the newspaper in Bakersfield, I remember thinking I shouldn't be here. We sat in the break room for about an hour before we headed back to the hotel. All sales appointments were cancelled. We got back to the hotel and up to my room when some nut job called in a bomb threat - so into the parking lot we all went. Now in your head you know its a fake, but the country was just attacked to you are taking everything a bit more seriously at this point. I remember calling Derrick and telling him there was a bomb threat - he was like we need to get you home now. We also received devastating new the next day that a singer and friend of ours husband was killed on Sept.11, not in an attack but on there 10 year anniversary trip. Trent Lenderink Tammy trent's husband died in Jamaica. I couldn't belive that Derrick had just spoke to him on the phone a week before . How could he be gone? What was Tammy going to do? And I was stuck in Bakersfield. All airports closed and locked down - there was no way home. I think it was 5 or 6 days later - we had finally had enough of Bakersfield and were renting a car to get home. Airports were still closed my colleague and I started driving up towards San Francisco. We were on the phone with the travel agents trying to figure out when the airports would open, no one knew. We got about an hour out of San Francisco and the agent t called us - we are on the first flight out of San Fran to Seattle. As we went through the airport (which NO ONE was in, it was so eery. Armed guards were standing there - they practically body searched us as we went to check in. I don't recall one person complaining of security being too much that day. Everyone boarded the plane in silence. Practically the whole flight no one spoke. I think if anyone would have gotten up on that flight - everyone would have been out of their seat beating the person! We touched down at Seatac with out incident. We all cheered and clapped as the plane landed. That is my memory of 9/11. I am still angered seeing the pictures I still feel helpless that I couldn't do anything to help the people in the twin towers or at the Pentagon, or on Flight 93. I think God the people of Flight 93 rose up and avoided more heart ache and more shattered lives in the US. It makes you wonder what you would do in that situation - I would hope I would find that courage to sacrifice myself to save others. Then again I kind of hope I never have to make that choice. I guess in thinking about 9/11 it reminds me of asking my parents where they were when Kennedy was assasinated, when you ask someone that of the generation you never forget the look on their faces as they recall exactly where they were when there world was changed forever. There is only one other historical event I will always remember where I was, that is when the Space shuttle exploded. Again these are days that changed me forever. I will never be the same again. Don't forget those that paid the ultimate sacrifice - they are heroes.