As I said in a previous post, Tuesday morning, September 11, 2001, will be one that I will never forget. The U.S. came under attack when four commercial airliners were hijacked. Nearly 3,000 people lost their lives. The major area that was hit was the world-famous World Trade Center towers. Before September 11, 2001, you never saw a photo of NYC without seeing the two huge towers in the background. Now, over 10 years later, the huge hole that was non-existent for ten years is now being filled with two brand new towers with a National September 11 Memorial.
During the same trip that I took about a month ago, my parents and I took some time to drive into NYC to see the National September 11 Memorial. We ended up parking in a garage about 10 blocks away from the memorial, but once we got out of the garage, it was a piece of cake to find our way because you just had to follow the large groups of people. :) When you get closer to the memorial, there is a “gift shop” of sorts that sell apparel, mugs, etc. to support the memorial and organizations that is still supporting the families affected by the horrible tragedy. In this gift shop they also have some items that were found at Ground Zero; one case contained a lady’s wallet, ID, parking ticket, eye glasses, etc. It was interesting to look at some of the things up close and personal that will forever be remembered because of that day.
After the gift shop, you then walk a few more blocks to go through security, and when I say security, I mean that I have never seen so many police officers in one area my whole life. They checked your ticket (which was free) numerous times while having everyone walk through metal detectors as well.
Once you finally make it to the memorial, it’s one of the most interesting experiences you can ever have. I kind of describe the area as peaceful, beautiful, calm, and intense all at the same time. As you walk up to the North Pool, you see hundreds of names etched around the pool that is basically the perimeter of one of the Twin Towers. You can’t help but look at them, each of them you pass and think about what they had been through; there were even names of women with “unborn child” next to them. Off to the side of the memorial are computers for family members to type in their loved one’s name to see the location they are at. You then walk to the South pool to only realize just now many people were killed that day as you see even more names around the perimeter of that pool. I was lucky enough to have gone on such a beautiful day because the sun was out and as it hit the waterfalls inside the pools, it was just a perfect scenery.
There was also a tree called the “Survivor Tree” that was braced down and blocked off. This tree was at Ground Zero on that day, survived, and is still surviving. It almost died numerous times by being hit by tornado as well as being transplanted a handful of times. Now it is back in the area it belongs and looks as beautiful as ever. :)
Around the memorial you see construction workers building the new towers and buildings that were all affected by that day. As my parents and I said when we were discussing while sitting at a cafe later that day, it’s almost like nothing ever happened in NYC. Everyone is working, walking, running, laughing, playing all around the memorial. NYC was hit with the worst disaster and they bounce back with a vengeance.
I wanted to share a few photos that I took while I was there and will admit that if you are EVER in the area, please stop by and take a moment to just take it all in.