World Trade Center: 10 days before 9-11
Wife Peg and I, along with friends Bob and Geri Burnett and Gary and Annette Griesbach, spent the morning Sept. 1, 2001, at the World Trade Center in New York City.
We took photos at the beautiful WTC plaza and listened to a British rock band. NYC sponsored free noon and evening concerts in that plaza.
Then we took that elevator ride. The observation deck provided spectacular views of Manhattan Island and beyond. We stayed there spellbound for a long time.
Other rooms inside that top floor afforded a theater where the seats actually moved and tilted while you watched a big-screen video of a helicopter tour of Manhattan, as if you were riding in the helicopter.
Another room featured a scale model of Manhattan which you could walk around and really get the “lay of the land” you had been exploring.
From the WTC we had lunch at Battery Park and then walked the park’s scenic bay walkway to catch a ferry to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. Our v isit to N YC w ith our friends was a whirlwind week in the “City That Never Sleeps.” We spent two days at the National Tennis Center watching the U.S. Open, learning the tricks of subway travel.
And the rest of the week we did the usual tourist things: Broadway shows, Grand Central Station, Carnegie Hall, Times Square, Rockefeller Center, Central Park and more.
Ten days later we watched TV in horror as people were running screaming on that Battery Park walkway, and on many other familiar streets, to escape the carnage of the most devastating attack on our country since Pearl Harbor — a sickening, cowardly attack that changed the world forever.
God bless our troops and our nation. Like Pearl Harbor, 9-11 awoke a sleeping giant. May we ever maintain our vigilance and our preparedness.