Sunday, September 11, 2005

What Isn't There

For some reason the television was turned on. Usually we listen to radio in the morning. Typically I am in front of the computer. Whatever. It was switched on and we saw the first tower burning. I recall wondering where the Air Force was hiding when we watched the second plane smash into the other tower.

Something else I remember thinking was "where are the engines?" when the smoking hole in the Pentagon was shown. It's so easy to say that, but I recall this distinctly. I said it out loud. And the Pentagon hole looked too small to me. I know nothing about engines but that these are quite big. I thought they would have made their own holes.

I didn't have to work that day. My spouse did. I do not remember whether or not my young one stayed home. Did we take her to her Children's Academy thinking that the television would be on for much of the day? Or did she stay home with me? I vaguely recall that we swam in the pool that day, to get out, but I could be wrong. I think that is right because of the relative quietness around the apartment complex.

When the towers fell we said to one another that it so resembled a controlled demolition. A little later we turned it off and my spouse drove to work.

For a few weeks the young one had fears, and she would say "the lights" and point up. Only after probing with questions did we come to realize how much she understood of what she had seen of it. Because we "come from New York" she somehow identified with the place, even though we were not from the city.

We lived less than a mile north of the approach path of the north runway for the airport. So we were accustomed to hearing jets going in and out all day. The quiet of Sky Harbor was itself a notable presence for those few days. That is why I think we swam that day. Because later there were no jets. And nobody else at the pool.

That's what I noticed the most. The lack of noise, the absence of defensive measures, juxtaposed with the sudden elevation of a flailing Bush presidency in the polls.

We still don't know where the heck Kennedy's brain is. Speaking of a conspicuous absence.


Lizzy said...

Evening Shrimp,

Oh dear, that sounds rude. Nice post! and I hope you get some sleep.

SassyNurse said...

I live in the exact location (marked by a highway intersection)where military planes turn around on their training missions. The no fly that was issued brought great silence here to, I will never forget that. I also will never forget that during this no fly time the military obviously didn't have to obey it, because I froze and could not decide if I should crawl under something or stand there and wait for impending death when I heard the approach of a jet. I stood there froze as it turned around and circled back over the house. Then I creid like a baby.