Tuesday, 12 March 2013

New York Trip Part 1- Ground Zero

We spent a remarkable day in New York City
to celebrate one of my dear friend's birthdays.
She absolutely loves NYC!
She is right too, it is an amazing place
just humming with energy, creativity, productivity
and all kinds of wonderful people!

We began our day at Ground Zero in the heart of the city.
It is such a emotional place.
You begin by walking past the Fireman's Wall
which is a long raised plaque depicting 
those brave men and women
who were first to arrive on that terrible day.

It actually is the wall of the fire station itself
so we got to walk past the trucks that were part of the First Response Team.

Then after careful screening we were allowed into the area 
where the Memorials are,
and where all the construction is going on to build the new towers.

The actual footprints of the twin towers are now two endless waterfalls.
The water leaves the sides in individual streams and flows
down the walls and into a "bottomless" hole.

The families of the victims had a great deal of influence
 upon the design of the memorial.
For instance the only names on the grounds
are the names of those who perished that day.
 Even those who were part of the rescue
or paid for the memorial's construction
are not acknowledged anywhere.
All the victim's names are etched on the horizontal panels
 on the walls of the memorial.
It's a very, very haunting place to me, and even more so
 becasue it felt like watching the towers and all the people falling down
over and over again,
no stop to their suffering, almost an endless flow of despair,
all disappearing into oblivion.
It was beautiful but extremely sad.
If this is what the families hoped for, they achieved it.

There are five new towers under construction
the tallest is 1,776 feet high and reflects 
the Washington Monument in its angles,
all very symbolic and quite amazing.

This tree is called "The Survival Tree" for very good reasons.
They found it all crushed on one side by debris from the towers,
 but still alive.
It had two saplings which they moved, one to Washington DC 
and another in some safe place in case anything should happen to this guy.
It has been carefully moved and placed between the two memorials.

Here it is again, with one of the new towers rising behind it.

Ground Zero is a sobering, sad, memorial to tragic destruction
and meaningless death;
A terrible part of our world's history.
There was a great feeling of reverence everywhere.
As it should be.

Our children's world will never know what it felt like
 before the attack,
when we thought we were safe
 and people believed in one another a little more.

1 comment:

  1. Wow. I've not seen all of this. It does seem a sad place...and the water flowing endlessly down, down, down into darkness... As you say, if this is what the families desired, then they certainly achieved it.