An Insane Act

This was a defining moment in our lives in which history was irrevocably altered.  It was one of those moments that is so life changing that you forever will remember where you were and exactly what you were doing when it occurred, like when Kennedy was shot or when Neil Armstrong took that giant leap for mankind.  I was just beginning my workday and it was sunny and warm with a delightful hint of the cool weather yet to come.  It was a “lets take a hike in the woods” day, but it turned out to be a “things changed forever” day.

We watched the events of the day unfold on Bloomberg Television on my computer at work.  At 8:15 AM or so two 767 jet liners were high jacked and crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center as an act of terrorism.  By 9:50 AM every airport in the United States had been closed, every single one.  This is absolutely insane.

At 10:30 AM my plant was closed for security reasons.  Like many people in Connecticut, I work in the Defense industry. Even though my company manufactures products used on weapons platforms, I just manufacture a product not a war.  As I drove home the absence of air traffic was astounding, and quite, the horror was still sinking in.  As I drove home on this horribly beautiful day I listened to the reports of the attacks on the Pentagon and the White House, they were a non sequitur.  Could so perfect of a day have room in it for such an act of war, New York is only 90 miles from here.

I needed to be with my family.  I drove into the church parking lot adjacent to the my daughters elementary school, observing the scene, trying to decide if I should take them home or leave them where they were.   The only movement was that of the custodian, Mr. Woody, he was getting a carton of toilet paper from the storage shed.  What could be more normal than that?  I decided to leave them in hopes of sparing them this horror for one more afternoon, before this event forever became a part of their reality. 

I went home to watch the news with my wife.  Not knowing what to do I went outside and repaired the rock wall while my wife did home work and made us sandwiches.  Finally my daughter’s bus brought them home, they were still unaware of what had happened, as we exchanged knowing glances with the bus driver.  We went to our neighbors home and ordered pizza for diner and continued to watch the news.  It was then that the children saw that everything was not normal and I had to explain that some bad men had done some very bad things. 

My daughters slept together that night for the first time in a while.  My oldest had nightmares some men in the woods yelling at us and trying to steal mommy.  My youngest asks, “We wont have a war here, right Dad?”  I assure here she will be all right and the war won’t come here, but it is right here and it will last for a while.  It will last until the bad men are gone and our children stop have nightmares about insane acts.