September 11th, 2001 - Where were you that morning?

in General Discussion edited January 2014
As in, "What were you doing and how did you find out what had happened?"

I was in bed. Sleeping, well, not exactly, I had been suffering from insomnia for about a month and had finally managed to go to sleep that morning instead of trying to stay up through the night and the following day, as usual, in an attempt to wear myself out and get on a "normal" schedule.

I wake up around 11:15 am EST. Very late by my standards. Usually up around 6:30 most days when I'm not sleepless the night before. Anyway, my eyes open, I look at the clock on the cable box on top of my TV and the sunlight streaming in the windows. It's a nice, wonderful morning, and I've finally managed to have a good nights sleep for the first time in a long time.

I remark to myself what a beautiful day it is, then I look over at my phone - it rings at once.

I wonder who would be calling me at such an early hour. Everyone I know is either at work, school or sleeping like me!

I pick it up, it's my Mom. Hmmmm...she's usually unable to get near a phone during most days, much less call me, so I realize the moment I hear her voice that there is something important she has to tell me, and it has nothing to do with what she will be bringing home for dinner.

She asked me a question like "How are you?" and I replied that I was fine, and it dawned on her that I simply didn't know.

Mom: "Two planes were hijacked out of Logan this morning, they were flown into the World Trade Center."

Me: "Oh, My God....But they're designed to withstand the impact of a commercial aircraft!" (this is something I had picked up from a WTC documentary earlier in the year)

Mom: "They've collapsed"

(I repeat "Oh my God" like 50 times after this and my Mom mentions the Pentagon).

I quickly say goodbye and run to the living room, where I turn on the TV to see Aaron Brown reporting. Apparently 5,000 people died 3 hours from my house in one of the places I loved most in this world and I had managed to sleep through it that day. Any other day and I might still be up from the night before or have awakened at 6:30am, but that morning I had managed to sleep through it all. The WTC had become nothing but a pile of rubble hours before I even opened my eyes.



  • Reply 1 of 43
    I was actually having a party at the time it happened (other timezone)

    After we heard of the tragedy (a call from parents) the party soon became more something of a funeral.
  • Reply 2 of 43
    I was sitting in my room here @ Georgetown. I live on the top floor of the tallest building on campus, and I have a lovely bay window with view of all of Washington, including the Potomac and half of the Pentagon- the other half is obscured behind the USA Today building in Arlington.

    Anyway, I turned on my computer and saw that the WTC was on fire. Turned on the TV- saw that. Just as I heard Tom Brokaw or whoever say that all planes had been grounded, we saw a plane flying off the normal approach into National - normally, they come over top of my building and follow the river, this one was in the wrong spot. We then saw the smoke billow up from the Pentagon

    Needless to say, my room was disaster watch central- there must have been about 30 people in here for most of the day.
  • Reply 3 of 43
    daverdaver Posts: 496member
    I was attending my second year British literature class from 10:00 to noon. Toward the end of the lecture, word started to circulate that the WTC had been attacked.

    On my way home from class, the unversity became a strange place. It's rare for everyone to be thinking about the same thing at once.

    The first thing I did when I got to my suite was turn on CNN, where those horrifying video clips were replayed again and again...

    The rest of my day was spent on the couch in front of my TV.
  • Reply 4 of 43
    For some reason I got to work early that day and I was one of the only ones in the back office. I had the radio on they said that "something horrible" had happened to the WTC but they really didn't know what. I tried to log on to but no luck, tried CNET, no luck etc... EVERYTHING was down... we have a TV in the break room but the only news station we got was a spanish one so we were watching film and listening to the radio.

    We got a bunch of wire out of the networking closet and built a receiver and finally got CNN.

    I left work early to go be with my wife instead of going to school.

    Mac Guru
  • Reply 5 of 43
    I was in Orchestra class... I didn't hear about it until like 50 minutes after it happened. I walked into my American History classroom to learn that history had just been altered. I was so shocked and in awe that the WTC had actually been targetted.
  • Reply 6 of 43
    marcukmarcuk Posts: 4,442member
    I was at work, it was 2PM here in the UK, a newsflash came on the radio about 2.10, and I couldn't believe it, I was trying to think what the wtc looked like, as I don't remember seeing it before, was wondering wether it was a 'big' building! About 2.30 there was another newsflash for the second plane, along with details of 2 other planes gone AWOL, I pondered for a few minutes, and as I work with a bunch of very young shoolleaving retards who seemed completely disinterested, I decided to leave work. I jumped on my Yamaha FZR400 and raced the 3 miles home, RIGHT at the end of my road was a bloody POLICE CAR!. I Got pulled over, talked myself out of it, and fortunately not fined. I then watched the TV until 3AM in the morning, It didn't matter how many times they showed the footage, I didn't believe It was real, and when the towers collapsed I was in utter disbelief. This is something that I will never forget-ever. I skived off the next two days simply to watch the drama unfold, still in disbelief, I remember when they found footage of the first crash, that fireman looking up and watching then saying Holyshit when it hit, and there was that guy stood below in the second attack, who just dived for cover behind the cameraman. Do you remember the footage of that guy with a camcorder then the towers collapsed who hid behind a car while the dustcloud engulfed him?
  • Reply 7 of 43
    i was sleeping. My dad called me right after the second plane hit. He actually told me that the white house was being bombed. So i turned on the TV to Fox News. And just sat in my chair until i had to go to work at 11. Oddly, that was also the day i got my PowerBook Duo 280 in the mail.

    we were pretty much glued to the TV at work. i called my dad an hour before i left. He said, " i hope you don't need gas, because its $2.40."

    I about went nuts. because i did need gas. Well by the time i got off at 5 it was down to $1.99. But still i needed gas. So i put whatever 20 bucks could get me. I refuse to pay more than 20 bucks for gas at one time.
  • Reply 8 of 43
    I was woken up by my friend Nancy who lives upstairs right after the first building collapsed. She was hysterical and yelling about planes and the world trade center. I rolled over to look out my window, and sure enough, one tower had been replaced by a plume of dark smoke and the other was smoldering. I live about a mile north (about 15 blocks) of where the twin towers once were. We went up to the roof and waited for the second tower to fall. We didn't want it to fall, but it seemed inevitable. It was the most terrifying thing I've ever seen. Then my building was evacuated.
  • Reply 9 of 43
    groveratgroverat Posts: 10,872member
    I was getting ready for class when the first plane hit and doing the morning e-mail thing and got the news alert e-mail from the BBC.

    I flipped on CNN just in time to see thousands more people die as the second plane hit.

    The campus was eerie, it really is weird (like said above) to know that your campus of 50,000+ is talking about the same thing. Normal social interaction is entirely superseded as you ask the nearest person if there's anything new. I walked into class while the Pentagon story broke and we watched it on the in-class television for about an hour and then left.

    A somber day, to be sure, the only smile I got was earlier, before I had turned on CNN and while I still assumed it was an accident of some kind, rather, the severity had not hit me. A poster at Ars said something to the effect of, "I had been playing Tribes 2 and then found out I wasn't the only one getting base raped."

    This will be the thing you tell your children about. Like my father being in gym class doing sit-ups when they announced over the PA system that JFK had been shot.
  • Reply 10 of 43
    I was asleep. I didn't wake up until about 1:00 or so. Just about everybody was dead by then. I checked my email. A friend had sent me something: "This is one of those things. I think we seriously underestimate the mentality of terrorists. I also think that these people seriously underestimate how this action will effect us. I think it will have the exact opposite effect. People are not going to get scared. They are going to get pissed beyond all recognition." I didn't know what he was talking about but I needed to take a leak. I'd find out soon enough.

    Another friend had left a couple of messages on the answering machine - if I was awake I needed to turn on the TV. "There's some awful, crazy stuff that's happening." He didn't know it then but maybe he already suspected it: his cousin was in one of the towers. He was a bond trader at Cantor Fitzgerald.

    I was on my way to the bathroom and my roommate told me that we had lost the World Trade Towers. It sounded crazy. I thought he was exagerating. The TV was on...

    After a little while I went outside. It was such a beautiful september day. I felt guilty because everything seemed so normal to me. I live on a busy street. Cars were going past. I wondered if there was even one of them didn't have the radio turned to the terrible news...

    Strange how much the world can change while one dreams.
  • Reply 11 of 43
    roger_ramjet did you freak out as much as I did a few days later when you saw the transformer explosion at the Civic Center?
  • Reply 12 of 43
    emaneman Posts: 7,204member
    I was in my chorus class and someone who had TV production the period before told me about the WTC and the Pantago and I thought he was kidding and I said "What happened? Bin Laden's trying to get us" And it turned out to be true.
  • Reply 13 of 43
    amorphamorph Posts: 7,112member
    I was waiting for a bus when it actually happened. I found out when I got into work and my officemate was huddled over her radio.

    I had picked that day to dress in all black.

    It took a long time to sink in. The office was much more subdued that day than it normally is.
  • Reply 14 of 43
    [quote]Originally posted by DoctorGonzo:

    roger_ramjet did you freak out as much as I did a few days later when you saw the transformer explosion at the Civic Center?<hr></blockquote>

    Not really. It was certainly a fairly big deal and I was concerned about the extent of the damage but it didn't seem like a likely terrorist target. I have a friend who is a paralegal in an office downtown and he described the amount of smoke from the fire. It surprised me. If I had seen that cloud of smoke on TV or in person wafting above CityPlace it probably would have freaked me but I first heard about it on WTIC radio and they were pretty much on top of the story. Also, I don't live that far away so later on I was able to see it for myself. It helps a lot when you have good information. If it had been in CityPlace however, I think that would have been really scary.
  • Reply 14 of 43
    I got off of working the 3rd shift, and with the radio on next to my computer, they came on with the announcement and then I went to the TV and watched the events unfold. Very sad.

    [ 11-13-2001: Message edited by: br0ck ]</p>
  • Reply 16 of 43
    I was in my geometry class (yuck) in high school, and someone mentioned to me that a plane had hit the WTC.

    And in reply I thought that they were joking.

    As I transfered to my next class spanish (yuck again), I realised the unthinkable.
  • Reply 17 of 43
    cosmocosmo Posts: 662member
    I was planning a canoe trip during gym class. People who had spare first period said that somethign had happened, but @ the time i didn't realize how serious this was.

    At the end of that period our principal made an announcement explaining that the US had been attacked. It was a very quiet lunch hour, most people went home or to friend's houses to watch CNN. I tried the school computers but all news sits were down, CNN was displaying a simple page explaining events.

    The strangest thign was standing out side at lunch. It was a beautiful day, not a cloud in the sky. It amazed me how calm everything seemed. A very erie calm. After school i went right home and turned on CNN
  • Reply 18 of 43
    dogcowdogcow Posts: 713member
    I was in math class when the headmaster came on the PA and announced it. The rest of the day was a blur with rumors spreading about car bombings in LA, the captial dome being hit, etc. I got home around 2 and watched CNN till about 11 PM.
  • Reply 19 of 43
    I was in Health class 1st block (7:40-9:10), and, well, my teacher is obsessed with the Today show. So we were watching that before it had even happened, and then we heard (and saw) Katie Couric come on the screen to tell about the incident (at the time). Everyone was devastated. We pretty much continued to watch CNN/MSNBC for the rest of the day in each of our classes (we've got wall-mount TVs in every room).
  • Reply 20 of 43
    cdhostagecdhostage Posts: 1,038member
    I was in class. We stopped instruction to watch the news. It was scary.
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