September 11. Here’s a quote from my book “Camp Follower One Army Brat’s Story” by Michele Sabad, that I used to preface a story about my memories of the JFK assassination. It could just as easily apply to my memory of September 11, 2001:
“Military families learn early that world events have direct consequences on their personal lives.”
Today, I recall that September 11 memory. I was at my desk, in a room of open cubicles shared with 6 other IT professionals, public servants and consultants alike. In Gatineau, in the Ottawa National Capital Region. A co-worker came in to the office, arriving for work later that the rest of us. After 9am. He said, “Did you see the news? A plane hit a tower in New York city.” Wow, we all said, that’s terrible, what kind of plane? How could that happen?
Then he said, “And I just saw downstairs on the big screen TV that a second one did too. Same place.”
Well, everyone was shocked of course. Then they all started to return to work.
Not me. I packed my bag, shut off my computer, and was the first one to walk out and go to my boss’s cubicle across the hall to tell her I was headed home, to see how this was going to affect me, my Air Force officer husband, my family, the world.
Later, of course, they shut the TV off at work, and many others also left work as they realized the impact of this day.
But, years later, I still remember the quote I used in my book, and the memory of the first time I felt like that. Unfortunately, it will probably not be the last.