911 - song(s)
Although I've not written a song directly about 9/11, I have referenced it in songs about my daughter. My wife was pregnant, and we both were devastated and worried about the kind of world we were bringing our baby into.
A few months later, President Bush came to the town where I taught to sign the No Child Left Behind bill, and I was chosen as one of the teachers who got to attend. It was a freezing winter day, and we waited in a long line because the security checking was so understandably extensive. My wife went into labor just a couple of days afterward.
I feel a song coming now - I'm starting to recall some other significant details about the day before 9/11 and an afternoon a few days later.
One of the worst years of my life. I lost my Mom to breast cancer earlier that Summer. That morning, I was walking to work through the radiology department and saw the first scenes. One of the older docs I work with was alive during Pearl Harbor, so for him it was a kind of flashback. 2 years later I went to NY to study primary care, and I saw the vacant lot where the towers stood. I will never forget.
I was volunteering in the classroom of my oldest and brought his sister with me because where I go, she goes and I saw teachers rushing back and forth in the hallway and grouping up and chatting, then an adult came into the classroom and motioned the classroom teacher and me to follow them. We were led to a conference room where the television played the plane crashing through the twin towers and then reports of other planes hi-jacked and headed for the pentagon and Los Angeles. We were filled in with the details of what had been reported. At that time, I thought for sure, America would be under attack, that the oceans were no longer the protective barrier that kept us from the fate of other countries in war. I was so thankful to be where my children were because not knowing what was to come next, it would have been torture for me to not know what my children might encounter. I remember being so thankful that I was not elsewhere and unable to get to them.
It was my 5th day as a teacher. I was working in an NYC commuter town, about 25 miles north of the city. I don't know to this day why they decided to do it this way, but the administrators announced what had happened over the PA system (I would guess shock had something to do with the decision). I listened, wondering why they were saying that, because it couldn't possibly be true. A few seconds after the announcement one of my students collapsed on the floor. At the end of the day all the teachers stayed at school until we had confirmation that someone was there to pick up every child. Phones weren't working well so we didn't know which parents were stuck in the city and which weren't. I had planned on going home to visit my parents that afternoon and I couldn't get out of my head what a beautiful day it was. I drove passed two fire houses. They were empty. The next morning as I drove into school the I was listening to the radio. They played Everclear's "Wonderful." I turned off the radio. I have friends who were there. I spent the week waiting for them to check in one by one. I didn't loose any friends that day, but I know people that watched the towers fall from buildings that later came down, and that talk about being caught in the "Godzilla Run from the ash cloud." I don't think I could write a song about 911. I've listened to Eric Bogle's "One Morning In Bar Harbor" once all the way through. I don't think I've made it again.
Just noticed this thread.
I was in Lisbon, Portugal on a vacation with my husband for our 5 year wedding anniversary. I first heard the news in Portuguese and didn't really grasp it until we went back to our hotel room and turned on the BBC. I was in shock. Our flights (through Newark, NJ and Boston, MA) were delayed a week....we were scheduled to fly back on September 13. And I felt very isolated as an American in a foreign country, not knowing if any of my friends were on those flights. We had not budgeted for an extra week in Lisbon and had a hard time finding a place to stay with our tightened budget (there was a convention in the city that had booked up most hotels).
We had not checked our email during our vacation, so we went to an Internet cafe to check in with our employers. I found out that same day that my grandma had died on our anniversary and we'd missed the funeral.
I reviewed some of the email from that day, ref my post above..., man, folks, many didn't "get it" for, looks like it took 3 days or so... even then, no one really "cared" about folks stuck outside, getting back in. (Well, family cared, but, could do nothing.)
I can see today, folks, still don't get "stuff".
The most frequent comment in my emails is, "everyone wants money from me", it's an opportunity to get some, (not that I expected the kindness of strangers... or free assistance like we give here in the USA, demanded from, no I expected to "pay", but not like "that").
It got me down, so left them alone... weird stuff!
I worked that day as a deaf relay operator. Every single call was about the attack.
Song? Yes, I wrote and recorded a song that week called "Freedom". I don't know if the recording exists anymore. I may have lost it to a computer virus or perhaps it is on a cassette tape somewhere. I may update later regarding that songs status. If possible I will present that here in this thread (external link). Thanks