What were you doing?
I was teaching. I went into my department in the Cathedral of Learning and the secretary was frantic, nervous, almost crying. We all gathered around one of the T.V.s we used for workshops and watched the news. I thought it was a movie or something. That plane flying into one of the towers could not be real. Then the SECOND plane hit the towers. It was then that it all began to sink in. Something was very wrong.
They told us to leave immediately because the Cathedral was one of the 'tall buildings' in Oakland and there was a security alert about a plane flying over Pennsylvania. I took my bookbag and left my office. There was no transportation when we made it to the street. Everybody started walking, waiting for a bus to come. Everybody was talking about the events. Nobody could believe what had happened. A thousand theories popped up every second. Eventually, one bus came along and I made it home. Six hours after I left my office. I got home and kept watching and watching the news. I could still not believe it.
This was something that happened in Third World countries. I have seen it happen in Colombia. It could not happen in the hyper-clean, super-safe United States. But it did happen. Later I read more about all the people that really hate the U.S. because of all the atrocities and sleights of hand and abuses it has perpetuated all over the world.
Like the big kid in the playground, the U.S. never expected a dirty, poor, uneducated kid to strike it in the face. But it happened. And the world has not been the same ever since.