Sunday, September 11, 2011

Remembering 9/11: Memories of the Twin Towers

As a New Yorker, my long-time impression of the World Trade Center towers was that they were modern, sterile, steel-and-glass boxes that happened to be the tallest skyscrapers on Earth when built. I was living in the Bronx when the twin towers opened in Manhattan, within a healthy walking distance of the high-rise apartment building where my mother (Daisy Burk) lived.

We would visit the towers, look up, and shake our heads at the contrast between these architecturally unremarkable buildings and the ornate Manhattan skyscrapers we admired, like the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building (where I later worked in a branch of Sam Goody), and Radio City.

My former sister-in-law was married at Windows on the World atop 1 World Trade Center, a small family celebration with the best view of any wedding I've ever been to. This famous restaurant was a destination on its own within the twin towers complex, with great food, impeccable service, and an incomparable vista stretching out for miles and miles.

On September 11, 2001, hubby and I were in Rome when the World Trade Center was destroyed by terrorists. We saw the shocking news on TV and later went to the Internet cafe to be in touch with our New York family and friends, reassuring ourselves that they were safe and letting them know that Italy was holding candlelight vigils to show sympathy.

So many lives lost, so much gone in such a short time.

In the decade since, I've never had the heart to return to that downtown site, although I've seen photos and videos. Too many memories.

As undistinguished-looking as those twin towers seemed when they were constructed--known for their historic height rather than their beauty--I miss them in the NYC skyline, the gap as gaping as if the two front teeth were kicked out of the city's smile.


  1. Perfect analogy, Marian. We see what isn't there.

  2. Oh, Susan, thank you for visiting and commenting. What a sad day.

  3. I'm glad everyone was safe. I'm from PA and remember thinking about channel 11. The towers were their logo.

  4. I'd forgotten the channel 11 many TV stations used the Twin Towers' antennae to broadcast signals. Many thanks for reading and leaving your note!

  5. Sounds just like our conversation last week...still enjoyed reading your thoughts...

  6. Thx for reading . . . and sewing together!