It was past midnight. I was in my bedroom attempting to study for my end of year History exam the next day. It was my last year of high school and the pressure to do well was overwhelming. The TV was on in the background screening infomercials, when suddenly I saw “Breaking News” from the USA. This was not at all common, the news didn’t just play past midnight on TV (not in New Zealand anyway). I was hit with the footage of the North Tower of the World Trade Centre exploding in flames after been hit by a plane. My first thought was “What movie is this??” followed by “Wait, is this real?!”, and for the next 2hrs I was glued to my television set before eventually collapsing into a very brief and uneasy sleep.
The next morning I got a ride to school with a friend. Few of us believed this was actually real, and in a time before the omnipresent internet, the news on the TV and radio was all we had. But this was real and it was terrifying.
18yrs ago today, the world stood still in fear, anger and confusion. Those of us old enough to remember the events that took place on September 11th, 2001 will never forget where we were. It was 1 month before my 18th birthday, it was half my life ago. I saw the “War on Terror” unfold, the Dept. of Homeland Security emerge, and the casualties of war presented on the news nearly every day for years to come.
Where were you when the world stood still on September 11, 2001 ?