Tuesday, September 11, 2012
911-11 YEARS LATER
On Tuesday, September 11, 2001, I got up, got dressed, voted, and proceeded to make my way to my Tuesday classes at Brooklyn college. Little did I know that I wouldn't be attending school that day. After I got off the 3 train at 42 Street-Times Square, I noticed that there were many people in the station, and being that Times Square is always crowded, I didn't think anything was wrong, but little did I suspect, something was, and it was totally unexpected. As I waited for the Q train, I noticed that it entered the station at a very slow pace. Slower than usual. After the doors opened, I got on and managed to get a seat, and if my memory is correct, I either pulled out a magazine or my tape recorder I used as a walkman. Anyhow, the conductor announced that there train would encounter 5 minute delays due to signal problems and traffic ahead. Then about 2 minutes later, he made an announcement that I will never forget; "passengers due to an explosion at the World Trade Center, all Q train service will be out of service." Many including myself were shocked and scared. "An explosion at the World Trade Center?!" I said to myself. "I got to get home ASAP!!" I flew off the train and up the stairs to catch the train uptown and while I was making my way towards the 7th Avenue line, I saw many passengers on the pay phone making calls to their loved one and jobs to try to figure out what was going on, and to inform them that they wouldn't be coming in. As I got to the Uptown 7th Avenue line, I saw an uptown 2 train pulling in half empty, and from my years of experience of riding the subway, I had a strong feeling that there wasn't gonna be any uptown # 3 trains running, so I jumped on the 2 and took it to 59 Street with plans of catching the D train uptown, but when I got off, I learned that all subway service was suspended. After hearing that, I rushed out the train station with plans on catching the bus uptown, but when I got outside, there was several passengers waiting for the bus as well, and it seemed we weren't the only ones who was confused and eager to get back home; the bus drivers were as well. In fact two buses drove by us, despite being flagged down by police to let us get on. Still unsure of what was going on, I decided to walk home. Normally I enjoy walking and I've walked long distances before, but this time was different. I felt numb, exhausted and had this feeling of fear, confusion and shock. By the time I got to 113 Street a bus had arrived and despite the crowd, I managed to get on. "Thank God" I said as I got on and found an space to stand. I was glad that I was able to rest my feet before I got to my destination, but it was a short trip. Turns out that the driver had to make a trip back down town to pick up more passengers due to the halt in subway service. I like many of the other passengers were upset, but we were more upset at the female bus driver, who acted very rude towards a senior citizen, who was exhausted. When the senior citizen tried to sit, the driver screamed at her saying 'YOU HAVE TO GET OFF! I GOT TO GO BACK DOWN TOWN AND PICK UP MORE PASSENGERS!! THIS BUS IS OUT OF SERVICE!!" Many had scoled the driver for her rudeness and unprofessional attitude by saying "You didn't have to scream at her. She's a senior citizen and you should have been more respectful!" (Had someone called the driver a Bitch or Hoe, she would have probably gotten mad). After walking a few more blocks, another bus came and being that I was tired, I was determined to get on. I did and was glad that to get on because I was all-walked out. Right when he got to the block where my grandmother lived, he announced that he was going to the Bronx, and whoever lived in Manhattan could get off, many, myself included, got off, and I was relived to be in my old neighborhood. When I got upstairs my mother had all the televisions on and that's when I learned that there wasn't just an explosion; The World Trade Center was attacked, and words couldn't express how I felt as I watched the footage of the planes crashing into the towers. After speaking to my mother, I ran to the phone and began to call some of my friends to see if they were ok. Two of them were home, while two of them I had problems reaching. (I later learned that one was stranded and had to walk back to Brooklyn, while my other friend had to walk through Queens to return to Brooklyn). I happened to call one of my other friends, who happened to be working the election polls that day, and he informed me that another friend who had witness the second tower crash had fled to his house to relax and compose herself. I was so grateful that my friends had returned home and that they wasn't harmed, but I was sad, and hurt that this had happened, and wondered why and how could anybody could be so damn cruel and evil to do something so damn evil and disgusting?