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aanuszek1's avatar

What were you doing on September 11th, 2001?

Asked by aanuszek1 (2290points) September 6th, 2008

In spite of the anniversary of September 11th, I was wondering what some people were doing on that day in 2001. Any stories are welcome.

For example, I remember I was in second grade. We were having hot dogs for lunch that day. Right before I was about to take a bite my teacher came up to me and told me I was going home and that my mother was on her way out to get me. When we got home my parents explained what was happening, with the twin towers and everything else, and that we were just going to spend the rest of the day together. Again, I was only 7 years old so I didn’t understand what was happening and really didn’t think too much about it.

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41 Answers

sarapnsc's avatar

I was in Spain at the time…wasn’t even aware of it, until someone told me about it 3 days later, when I was on the phone with them.

Gosh, your young!!!!!!!! Great question, from someone so young!

syz's avatar

I was in surgery, performing a dental cleaning on a dog. I thought it was all an awful prank, at first.

gailcalled's avatar

My daughter called me about 8:50 AM and said to turn on the telly. We watched together for an hour, me in NY and she in Providence. I did nothing that day but watch, listen and talk to family and friends.

MissAnthrope's avatar

I was living in Italy at the time. I’d gone to lunch with my family and my aunt and uncle who were visiting. We had a great lunch and started to leave, when we passed a guy who was just getting off the phone. He heard us speaking English and told us he’d just gotten a disturbing phone call from his son, who had told him two planes had crashed into the World Trade Center.

We were all stunned and in disbelief, wondering amongst ourselves what had happened. It was almost unbelieveable. We rushed home and turned on the TV, watching in horror what was unfolding. We sat glued there for a couple of hours, and over that period of time, Italian friends and family gravitated toward our house. I will never forget their sympathy and shared shock. They came over to be with us in a time of national crisis, to share the disbelief and dismay.

I was really touched by the outpouring of emotion and sympathy the Italians shared with us. There was a memorial and many people shared several minutes of silence.

seVen's avatar

I was sleeping, my mom woke me up cause she had the tv on like always, and we were in shock.

aneedleinthehayy's avatar

I was in the 6th grade and had no idea why I was sent home early. Came home to find my mother layng in bed watching it on the news. All I remember is looking up at the TV and seeing news and becoming disinterested.

sndfreQ's avatar

I was bottle feeding my first-born son (he was only 2 months old), and remember that morning vividly. Sitting out on my balcony with him, it was a quiet, bright and sunny morning…my mother in law called on the phone, and said “Did you see the news? They’re attacking us.” I looked down at my child and just sat there, stunned and in silence.

Snoopy's avatar

I was working. I just didn’t grasp what was going on….Shortly after the first plane hit, they were on the radio breaking in w/ the news and I was backing out of my driveway on my way into work. I worked all day in a disconnected fog.

trudacia's avatar

Driving to work in New Jersey. Worried sick about my brother and many other family and friends who live and work in Manhattan. I lost a high school friend and my cousins husband. Its a day I will never forget.

JackAdams's avatar

I was visiting friends in Las Vegas, Nevada, and it wasn’t yet 6 AM, there.

anthony81212's avatar

I just came home from English lessons. I walk in home to find that most of the people in our neighbourhood were in our house!

Ineedtoknow594's avatar

I went to work that morning and it was quiet in the office. Someone had turned on a radio and it was saying something about ”A plane crashing into the towers”. It just seems strange to me that on tuesday the morning the office seemed eerily quiet, not a lot of people around. Then I went to the caferia after someone told me a plane crashed into one of the Twin Towers. In the cafeteria women were crying and it was there I saw something that I will never forget. I was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. I used to work as an Internal messager for a Wall Street law firm. Once in a while I would make external trips for the mail room. I always had to go to Tower One. Seeing those two building fall was truly horrifying. My Best Friends family prayed for the victims. I will never forget that day.

writerini's avatar

I’m in ninth grade too. Freshman pride. (Great question, by the way)

jdogg's avatar

i remember 2 i was in 3rd grade and my teacher was crying and they let us out early at 9:00 am it was depressing

jdogg's avatar

stupid freshman jk i got tackled down the stairs when i was a freshman good luck!

gailcalled's avatar

I learned later that an acquaintance of mine had been killed in one of the towers. It took over 3 years for the family to get a snip of definitive DNA back. Dreadful for all.

He had a male live-in lover; the family excluded him from the mourning, the services, the memorials and the long-term grieving.

Several family members had near-misses due to late trains or flukes in schedules.

writerini's avatar

I can’t quite remember much, except that I was living in Trinidad at the time and I was at my cousins house.

marikastar's avatar

I was making banana pancakes in my tiny kitchen on 56th St, listening to Hot 97 on the radio. The DJs started joking about it, obviously not knowing what was happening yet. They played more hip hop. I went out on the street, to 9th avenue, where everyone was looking downtown at the smoke. This woman told me “this is a day to pray.”

blastfamy's avatar

I was 9; in fifth grade…

I was on a school bus en route to a cultural show field trip. A call on the radio came, telling the busses to turn around. When we got back to the school, we were rushed inside, and all of the doors were locked / windows shut. They wouldn’t let us go outside for recess; they wouldn’t tell us anything. 2/3 of the class was taken out by their parents, so we knew something was up. They still refused to tell us anything. They being those running the school). I only found out when I got home.

simone54's avatar

I remember it vividly…

I woke up like I did everyday and watched a little TV before I went to school. I turned the TV on and went right to some cable station that played the Wonder Years. It was on a normal with no interruption. As I was sitting there my dad came in and told to switch the channel because something “catastrophic” (that was the exact world he used) had happened. I switched channels and watched the news trying to figure out what happened. I watched the whole time until I had to leave for school. When I finally did get to school, all the students where in the lobby watching the TVs until they made us go in to class.

Remember driving home from school the next day seeing all the American Flags outside of the houses. I even remember a group of people on the side of parking lot giving out free mini-flags to people. Anyway, I was very proud of my fellow Americans.

gailcalled's avatar

I have a friend with an office at 80 Wall Street. It took him eight hours to walk to Upper East Side – given the smoke, dust, confusion, debris and chaos.

kevbo's avatar

I was driving to work and either turned on the radio or flipped stations in the middle of a report of the first plane and remember thinking about War of the Worlds. We ended up watching the rest of it off and on at work.

breedmitch's avatar

I was awakened by my landline ringing. I screened the call but they didn’t leave a message. It was my sister in California. She called back five times until I finally got out of bed to answer. The first tower had just fallen. I turned on the TV, woke up my roomate/ best friend and we watched for a while and then went up to the roof. I live on the highest point in Brooklyn that had a residence on it. From the roof we see all of downtown Manhattan. We watched in horror as the second tower fell. To this day I wish I hadn’t seen that. The next few days are a blur.

cak's avatar

I was in a budget meeting in Charlotte, NC. My mobile started ringing like crazy and everyone knew never to call during budget meetings. It wouldn’t stop and I answered. We had guys in Manhattan that day meeting with financial planners. After we stopped what we were doing and stood there in horror, watching everything unfold. We had turned on the TV before the 2nd plane hit and that sickening feeling when it happened. My phone rang again and I could barely hear what the person was saying. I realized it was one of the guys – but he was our NY counterpart that rarely came into this office. He couldn’t get through to his wife, I was the 14th person on his speed dial, he could only give me the number and the line went dead. I dialed it and it was his house, his sister answered and said that his wife was in shock and couldn’t think enough to process what I was saying. I think she thought I had bad news. I told her who I was and where I was – then I’m fairly certain she thought it was a prank. She asked me several questions about S and then after I convinced her, she started crying and thanked me. Rarely did my boss say, “Go home to your families” but that day, he said something I hoped we’d never hear in my lifetime, “Ladies and Gentlemen, go home to your families, we are at war.” He was very military oriented and just hearing him say that left a feeling inside me that I’ll never ever forget.

That night, I sat up sad and scared. I have cousins, very close friends and co-workers that I have no idea where they are. I can’t find them, can’t get through to them and I just want to hear their voice. My friend, I’ve known her since kindergarten, I was so scared she was gone.

Over the next 5 days, I heard from all of them.

We had co-workers (and friends of mine) stuck in different parts of the country because they couldn’t get home – due to all the grounding of flights.

About a month later, we got a note from S’s wife, thanking us for calling their house. I know that he went through some very intense therapy and still can’t talk about that day.

MacBean's avatar

I was a senior in high school. One of my friends had gone to the library on an errand for our English teacher. The library in my school always had a muted TV with CNN on, so we found out right away. Kristen came back and said a plane flew into one of the towers. Other people who’d been in the library told other classrooms about it and before long every TV in the school was on. A few rooms were set up where people who wanted to watch the news as it happened could do that, a few teachers kept classes running normally if students needed that, and the gyms were open for anyone who wanted to take refuge there. Those who watched the news (I’m included in this group) saw the second plane hit and the towers collapse in real time.

St.George's avatar

I was a teacher at a small school for at-risk students in California. I just remember trying to assure the kids that it would be okay.

susanc's avatar

My neighbor lady called us as the sun was coming up and told us to turn on the tv, then hung up. I remember sitting in front of the tv weeping and weeping, with the sun streaming into the room with a reddish-yellow light, like burning, which normally we’d have thought was beautiful, but it scared us. My husband went far across the living room to make coffee and I had to go over there with him because it was horrible to be alone on the sofa. I stayed on the sofa for 3 days. I thought it was something I was obliged to do, to bear witness. I also got on the computer and began
forwarding emails from people on the scene to everyone I knew (I didn’t know about blogs yet). Bush began to spout a lot of nonsense and my heart sank like a rock: we had an opportunity to learn, to grow up, to be brave, to be strong, to speak truth, to understand
something we’d been ignoring, and we blew it. “We.”

ckinyc's avatar

I was sleeping in my downtown NYC apartment. My boyfriend called me up on his way to work and said… a plane hit the world trade center and I should take some photos… I remembered I ask him was it a big plane or a small plane… The rest you can read in my photo blog I created back then >

Mtl_zack's avatar

i was in grade 5 and we were doing this 4 days program at a summer camp nearby. it was the third day, and all the parent liaisons and the principle were watching the only tv in the camp. the students had to rely on rumors and no one told us what was going on. i was probably the last one to hear the news because i dawdled off after one activity and got back later.

by the way, im Canadian, but this event still had an impact on my life

TheHaight's avatar

I was a freshman in highschool. I remember staying home from school that day, because my mom said I could. It was horrifying to me, I didn’t think something like this could happen.

augustlan's avatar

I woke up early, thinking, “What a beautiful day!” As I was showering, the phone kept ringing. When I finally got to it, my husband told me to turn on the TV…as soon as I saw what was happening, my knees buckled. As I sat on the end of the bed, my husband and I stayed on the phone, and both of us watched the 2nd plane hit. That was the defining moment, the moment we knew that this was not an accident. We lived about 30 miles outside of Washington, DC and as I drove around in a daze, I heard on the radio that the Pentagon had been hit. I had a brief panic attack, as my husband had worked at the Pentagon for several years, and had only moved to another location a short time before. It took me several minutes to convince myself that he wasn’t there. My mother worked in DC, at a large government complex (NIH), and I couldn’t reach her for hours. All cell lines were busy. As soon as I knew Washington was involved, I raced to my children’s school and picked them up. I had to explain this nightmare to my 3 very young children, which was absolutely heartbreaking. It was the first time they were aware that evil exists in the real world. The town I lived in is home to Fort Detrick, an important military base. Being in close proximity to the base, and not far from DC made the next several months surreal. Fighter jets flew overhead frequently, reminding us that life would never be the same.

loser's avatar


Allie's avatar

First of all, you were in second grade?!?! Shit, I feel old now.. and I’m still young.

I woke up in the morning for school (eighth grade) and my mom told me what happened. I didn’t believe her until I saw the television.
I went to school and first period was my English class. My teacher, Koblik, was especially worried because her oldest son works/worked not far from the WTCs. She went to the teacher next door and asked him to watch our class while she went and tried to reach him somehow. We watched the news on the TV in the classroom. I remember how they kept the actual collision on a loop. We were all pretty dumbfounded. No one knew what to say (as if there was anything that could be said..) so we just watched in silence. None of the kids I was sitting next to even looked at each other. We were all too focused on the news.
The kids who had family from the area attacked were allowed to go home and be with the family they had here and to possibly call their relatives back east.
I’ll never forget what it was like watching about it.

wildflower's avatar

I was on the beach in Tunisia, having my hand henna painted by a young girl who spoke some English and told me about this horrible thing, she’d heard on the radio, that had just happened…she couldn’t explain very clearly what exactly it was, but planes, New York, crash, collapse…......It took another 24 hours before I could get any English newspapers and in the meantime we were wondering if war was breaking out, if it was the UN building, if it was accident or terrorism…....

rawpixels's avatar

I was working in Manhattan on W 29th St. While, I was far enough away not to get hurt physically, the emotional damage was significant. It surely was a dark day and one I will never forget.

Divalicious's avatar

I was working 3rd shift in 2001, and didn’t hear the news until I logged on to chat that afternoon. I thought it was a lame attempt at a joke at first. Then I was glued to the TV, catching up on the event.

The next day, I was driving and I saw a hitchhiker heading south. I stopped and offered him a ride. He persuaded me to take him the rest of his day’s journey, which was 2 hours away! He was a minister that trekked from coast to coast across America every year. As we drove, we discussed, debated, and prayed over the events on 9/11.

flameboi's avatar

I graduated form hs in july 2001, my parents didn’t have the money to pay for my college education so I was waiting to turn 18 (mid december) to get a job to be able to go to college. I used help my mom with my brothers, take my lil brother Sebastien to his school and prepare lunch for him and my sis Jennifer (she was still in hs), then clean the kitchen, do the laundry, things like that…
I remember that morning my mom woke me up early, she took her tv to my room (my brothers already left home) and left my breakfast in my night table “there was a plane crash in New York city” then she left for work…
I was watching the news when the second plane hit the tower, I remember I cried, and I forgot to prepare lunch, I didn’t do anything that morning, I went to get my brother back home, bought something to eat, and I couldn’t sleep for a couple of days…

jca's avatar

i was in albany for training for my job. we were in the classroom, having legal training. the trainer was a lawyer and he was fiddling with the computer, having trouble with it. one of the other trainers said something like while we wait for him to fix the computer, the news just said that a plane flew into the world trade center. they think it might be terrorists. the lawyer said that his daughter went to school at the HS right near the WTC. He said he was leaving immediately to try to get to her. We all disbursed and i went and found a TV and saw one of the buildings fall. I tried to call my mom, who works downtown by Grand Central Station. All the phone lines were busy. The trainers told us to go back to the hotel and take a break till 1. I was upset because i was thinking about my mother. We all went back to the hotel and gathered in one of the rooms and were watching TV. We were like “who’s Bin Laden?” Nobody ever heard of Bin Laden until that day. At one, the trainers told us to take the rest of the day off. The hotel (Holiday Inn Wolfs Lane Albany) had a big buffet, free food, cold cuts etc., in their lounge. A lot of people staying at the hotel were airline pilots and flight attendants. They were all in the lounge, we all just hung out and it was like a party, but we were all kind of traumatized and dazed. We drank and ate all day, and we were all phoning our loved ones to see how they were all doing, and watching the news on TV. Later on in the day, I called home and my dad said my mom had to walk up to 125th street, from her job, which is about 100 blocks. I know NYC was like a mass exodus of commuters walking uptown because there were no trains downtown. It was kind of a surreal day.

mrjadkins's avatar

I was teaching in a high school. Someone came in and said something about a plane hitting the first building. I thought it was one of those small commuter planes. I had no concept of what was happening. We had TVs in the classrooms but we did not have cable. I kept teaching and the day kept getting heavier (as teachers know that feeling).

I didn’t know what was going on. We did not have television access in all parts of the building. I only had glimpses of what was going on in the conversation in the halls between classes.

I remember finally hearing the whole story at the end of the day. I remember the stillness of the day and realizing there were no planes in the sky. I refused to listen to the radio all the way home.

It wasn’t until I got home and turned on the news that I finally saw what was happening. There was nothing to prepare me for that.

Each year, I remember. I honor the day itself along with all those people who we lost. Tragic indeed.

mxilla's avatar

In English class, when the headmaster came in and interrupted the lesson. I still have the day’s assignment, dated “September 11, 2001.”

Eggie's avatar

I was 15 years old in the fourth year of my secondary school education. I was in English class with a free period, when one of the teachers came in and told us what happened. We all went downstairs and saw the news on the schools television.

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