Friday, September 11, 2009

September 11

This is one of those questions, like where were you when Kennedy got shot.  I'm sure everyone remembers where they were when the twin towers went up in smoke.  Me?  I was on my drive to work.  They were talking about the first tower and while they were talking, the second one got hit.  That was the defining moment, when they realized this wasn't just an accident.  We've seen a lot of differences in our country since that time.  I don't think I can *not* blog about the event, and I'm sure I'm in good company.
Along these lines, I remember during one of my research sessions that I looked up Nostradamus.  There are those of you that would say he was lucky, there are those of you that might think he's a prophet.  Whatever he was, I find it interesting, but that's just me.  I like things that seem to reach beyond explanation.  The uncanny coincidences in some of his quatraines cannot be denied.  One of the more compelling things for me is that people try to interpret to suit their needs.  For instance, it's easy to look back on history and point out the references to "Hister" in place of Hitler and the World Wars.  What I don't understand is why, if they see Nostradamus as a predictor of war, they aren't making more of the 10 years' war that he predicted starting around the year 2000 that would involve the world power and an Arab state with a devil in a blue turban. (My facts may be a little off here, but that was the gist.)  For those people that try to promote Nostradamus, it seems to me that he hit another one on the head, and yet the documentaries I've watched seem to skip over that part.  And haven't we been at war for . . . do I have to do the math?  (Does this mean we have two more years of war?).
I'm not acknowledging or denying these "prophesies," I'm just noting that I find them interesting.  I'd thought to include them in one of my stories, once, but it seems one would have to be a dedicated scholar to sift through all Nostradamus's works.  The subject became to broad and the concepts too obtuse and far-reaching in some instances.  Not something that would lend itself easily to a passing reference, and too much to take on (in my opinion) for a work of fiction.

Whatever your take is on the matter, whether it was predicted or not, the events on this date 8 years ago did happen and they will leave their mark on our nation for many years to come.  The first time I traveled to England (before 9/11/01), they'd had their fair share of terrorists attacks with the Irish Republic Army and other assorted bogeys.  Heathrow Airport impressed me deeply because of the tight levels of security.  Leaving from Chicago-O'Hare, where my family came to the gate to see me off, I was unaccustomed to having to pass through three separate security checks at Heathrow where no one was allowed at the gates other than ticketed passengers.  It was a little unnerving at the time - something I hadn't encountered before living a sheltered life in the U.S.  Of course, that time has passed.  Our security is greatly enhanced since that experience.  Now, although most travelers find it inconvenient, you won't find anyone arguing about the necessity of such measures.

Where were you on 9/11?

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