Thursday, May 17, 2007

New York, New York

Today was the most moving day I've had in a long time. I woke up this morning at 5:30, trying to catch the 9 am flight to DCA. Unfortunately for me, the 9 am flight goes to Dulles and not Reagan; the DCA flight was at 11. I was mad at myself for not paying attention - its not like IAD and DCA are close enough to blame on dyslexia. So I was back at my crash pad by nine.

By then my roommate was up, and she was going to the city for the day so I decided to go along. From here, we take the light rail to the path into the World Trade Center Station. I was completely unprepared for what I saw. I know its been six years since everything, but all these emotions came bubbling to the surface. The ride is so short, and after once you're out from under the river, you're right there in ground zero. As soon as there's light, you're surrounded by giant concrete walls, with symmetric holes where steel used to go. There are ramps and construction workers; it feels so alive yet mournful. The walk from the platform to the street is colorful with children's art portraying events that happened there and memories associated with them. I didn't realize how close St. Paul's was, or how miraculous it is that it's still standing. I'm sure the last time the chapel was used for its intended purposes was the remembrance service with our President in attendance. It has all sorts of artifacts and displays inside, and the chairs and pews are pushed to the sides. I lit a candle (such a Catholic thing to do!) and signed the wall with a fuchsia Crayola crayon. I was amazed at the different tourists that were there, the ones who didn't speak English, the ones who had obviously been there before, and the others who, like me, were so touched and moved with tears streaming down our faces.

After that we went to Chinatown and bought knock-off hand bags.

And a good day was had by all.

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