Diaries Magazine

What Were You Doing the Day the Twin Towers Fell?

Posted on the 05 September 2011 by Ellenarnison @Ellen27

What were you doing the day the Twin Towers fell?

KzAkabueze via Flickr

Ten years ago this week. What were you doing when the World Trade Centre came under attack? Do you remember?
The sun was shining that day in 2001. I was about four months pregnant with Boy Two and working as night editor at the Daily Star of Scotland. 
I was late for work, so driving around looking for parking space while half listening to the news telling me something about a plane and the World Trade Centre. My imagination conjured a single misguided fool flying a little aircraft - I think someone landed one in Red Square the previous week. 
But the minute I arrived in the newsroom I knew this was different. My colleagues - we shared an office with the Scottish Daily Express - were standing silently watching the TV screens suspended from the ceiling. The sky was blue there too as we tried to digest what we were seeing. 
There are few journalists that don't love to be at work on the day of a big story - however hideous the facts. But for us that day, in truth, there was little to do but watch. There was nothing Scotland could offer that would come near the importance of what was happening in America.
Our colleagues in the London office set about clearing the newspaper of it's usual content and deciding how to present this monumental story. In Glasgow we read the stories as they came in on the news wires and watched developments on the TV. 
Pictures arrived on our computer screens and we gazed at them in shock. Then with a sickening jolt, I realised that wasn't debris tumbling from the building, it was people - cartwheeling, freefalling living people. I put my hand to my belly where a new life was growing. 
I will never forget the weight of that day, but, in the main, my life went on more or less as before. The new life I was carrying is nine and finds Doctor Who too scary to watch all the way through. 
But spare a thought for those whose lives changed for ever on 11th September 2001. Remember the dust lady, Marcy Borders, snapped, stunned and with her office clothes and pearl necklace coated in yellow dust. She has fought addictions and lost custody of her children. It took her to this year to be able to board a plane again. 
What were you doing on 9/11?

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