Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate November 2001

download word file, 4 pages 0.0

Jen Kwak Sept. 29 On Sept. 11 I woke up to get ready to go to my first day at school.

It was a particularly beautiful day. Not one cloud was in the sky. For once the humidity stopped and there was a gentle winter breeze that stroked my hair. I walked to school drinking my large Starbucks coffee (caffeine junkie that I am). I was oblivious to the mayhem that was about to unfold. I heard about a fire in the Towers on the LIRR train from someone's cell phone, but thought nothing of it. I heard about the first plane slamming into the World Trade Center by a suicide pilot in class. At the time I thought it was a small private plane driven by a suicidal maniac. I had no idea of the seriousness or the tragic events that would take place. Then 10 minutes later my English teacher was stopped by a supervisor who told her that all subways have stopped, tunnels closed, airports shutdown and that we were stranded in Manhatten.


We proceeded with our class, until we we were again interrupted by another announcement from my teacher. A second plane has hit the towers causing the building to collapse. What suprised me the most was my teacher's seemingly calm attitude, for she talked as if she was giving a grammar lesson on how to put comma's after a pause in a sentence As the news hit us, a girl in my class burst into tears, "What about all those people" "What will happen to all those lives" The teacher instructed us to try to get home as soon as possible. For some reason I could not grasp that the towers had collapsed and I continued to remain as calm as the teacher, until I was walking past a Sprint store that had a wall sized T.V screen, then I could see the black smoke and people falling out of the building. That was when my calmness turned to fear, and fear turned to horror and a big question mark as who could be capable of such a disaster. I thought "Oh God what is happening to this world" "What of the peace and stability I have enjoyed all my life. I looked around me and there was kaoss everywhere, the streets were filled with people fleeing the city. There were people depseratly trying to reach loves ones on cell phones that just don't connect. There were lines of people on pay phones. I just thought "Get away from tall buildings" " Then I thought My God there are buildings everywhere" "The city is a target." I was witnessing a city in devastation, "This was wa on Americar." I thought who in God's name would attack the Pentagon of the strongest superpower in the world and why attack civillians of the good people of N.Y.

There were no words to describe my thoughts that can tell the story of what I saw or the emptiness I would feel in the days to come. It is weeks later, I am still trying to take in what I saw. I am still trying to live trying to do live my daily life and be as normal as possible . Though I didn't personally know anyone I am feeling so guilty for being alive. I can't do anything right, when I am with my friends I feel in vain for being alive and living normally. When I am with my friends that horrible feeling is still there, when I go to the mall, I can't shop, clothes don't seem important. I can't watch anything on T.V but the news. All I listen on the radio is the news. I feel like I should be mourning.

The day of the tragedy I secretly prayed and gave thanks for my own safety and for those who perished in the building. I imagine the fear and horror those innocent people felt minutes before death. So many live lost in a day. I heard that a dying cancer patient first denies that they will die, they go through a denial phase, then a phase when they face death. For the people in the burning building they had seconds to take in death, they probably died in shock. I will learn of those stories of the dead, I will keep them alive in my memory, I will mourn for sons, daughters all those that died.

It was a surreal day that day. Engraved in my mind are the bodies falling out of the sky. What happened was exactly like the movies, and for many night I murmurmed in my sleep at nightime "There's a burning building, " Oh my GOd, those people are dropping from the sky, Oh my God. .. Oh my God.

For months to come I will unite with my brothers and mourn, I will co-operate with the President of the United States and keep the spirit of America alive. "United we stand" The government and Congress did not point fingers, Republicans and Democrats were one voice. After we are together and mourn together, it is time to point fingers. How could this happen to such a great superpower as America? Why couldn't the strongest superpower in the world protect it's citizens? What was the military doing when the third plane hit the Pentagon. What will other countries think if America can't protect the White House, the capital. What happened was a disgrace on America's security. Will other countries laugh at us for not being able to protect the capital. Changes have to be made, what happened was big wake up call for the nation and the President. Foreign policy and world relations is something we should tread carefully and focus on. We have to objectively look at ourselves and examine what faults we have done, and what we have done right. But there has definetly got to be a change, we can no longer be lax in airport security , and defense capabilities nationwide. Change has to be made so that America can defend itself against terrorists. We have to be in the defense mode when it comes to terrorism.