The energy of the mind is the essence of life. – Aristotle

The Fall and the Rise

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I remember.  But then again it’s fuzzy.

My sophomore year of high school I had band first period.  There was a TV in the band hall, but it rarely worked.  We were practicing our marching music.  Actually, I’m not real sure why we were in the band hall at all.  Usually we were out at the practice field.

The day began just as any other day, but about 15 minutes before class ended the TV came on; and from there, I would watch TV for the rest of the day.

It was mostly confusing about what exactly was going on, but I gathered something bad in New York.

I arrived in French class just in time to watch the first tower fall.  I would watch the second fall in the same class.  No one really talked.  I think everyone was just trying to comprehend what was going on, and wonder if our little border town would suffer the same fate.

Class by class, we did nothing.  We talked, we watched the TV.  No instruction was given.  Sometimes teachers would chime in making statements like, “the world will never be the same,” or “your life will forever be effected.”  I didn’t realize what exactly that meant at the time.

Kids cried.  Most were just quiet.  The border was shutdown.  The air force base was shut down.  Kids that lived in Mexico or on base frantically tried to call their parents to figure out how they were going to get home.

For those of us that were old enough, we remember exactly where we were and exactly what we did.  I wonder if the effect was anything similar for generations before during the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

I can’t imagine being in either place on Sept. 11 or Dec. 7.

Years later we still remember.  We watch video clips and are immediately taken back to that very day.

On that day, we realized we were all human.  We realized that could happen to any of us.  We realized we weren’t invincible.  We realized some would lose their lives.  We realized that some of those might be close to us.  We realized that families would suffer.  We connected as a group in those moments and bound together unlike anything I’ve ever seen.



Author: Jess

Texan by birth, Okie by current address. Journalist who caught the travel bug. I have a healthy dachshund obsession and spend endless hours reading about world history on Wikipedia.

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