I was working in the World Trade Center in Amsterdam.
One of my colleagues, a guy from Australia with a wicked sense of humour, came into my office and said “a plane just flew into the World Trade Center in New York”.
I was waiting for the punch line.
At first the news was confused, it was a small plane, into one tower. News websites such as BBC and CNN were quickly overloaded – but the news was being picked up in Australia and New Zealand, where it was night and the sites weren’t overloaded.
Even seeing the images it was impossible to believe. One, two, three planes down and rumours of a fourth. Frightening reports of people jumping from high floors, and the devastating slow collapse of the towers. And a knot in my stomach, made of part horror and part hope – hope that none of those killed were colleagues or known to me.
I disagree with so much of what has happened since then in the victims’ name. But today I’m taking a minute to think about the thousands who died, were injured, those who lost family members, and those who tried to rescue others putting themselves in danger.
Image; Work found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Black_Ribbon.svg / CC BY-SA 3.0