I remember waking up a few minutes before my alarm went off. There was sunlight streaming through the windows and I could hear a bird singing outside. I was just dozing off again when I heard the click of the timer on my stereo. The radio came on with a DJ saying, "...Trade Center about eighteen minutes apart..."
I remember sitting downstairs on the couch, flipping the TV from channel to channel, trying to make sense of something absolutely senseless, confused reporters stumbling over their words as they tried to keep up with events.
I remember one of a legion of reporters talking haltingly to the camera, not seeing a skyscraper behind him beginning a slow, obscene drop while I screamed at him to turn around.
I remember withdrawing cash at the bank "just in case" while the teller begged me for any information I had.
I remember trying to find out where all the New York members of my family were, slowly ticking off names on a list with increasing relief, then doing the same with friends & former co-workers who were in downtown DC or at the Pentagon.
I remember talking to friends & relatives who knew a pilot... a flight attendant... a traveler... whose bodyless funeral they had to attend.
I remember being downtown, pausing to look at the brightly lit Capitol dome shining against the night sky and wondering how much longer it would still be there while an armed soldier kept an eye on me from a nearby street corner.
I remember advising a good friend to always tell the people she cared about that she loved them because she could never tell when she'd have another chance.
I remember, and ten years later, I still cry.
We should all remember.
My niece joined the family on July 12th, 2010. This special young lady's mother is my younger sister, which in classic Chinese culture makes me her Jiu Jiu (舅舅-- thus the title of this blog. Here I intend to semi-regularly post reflections, thoughts, stories, and assorted whathaveyous pertaining to our trip to China, adoption in general, and (mostly) watching my niece grow up. Since the web is a very public place, I will attempt to maintain my family's privacy while telling the story... but I invite you to follow the blog and come along for the adventure!