As these memories return, I look out my window in the direction where the World Trade Center once stood. Each year, on the anniversary of 9-11, they set up huge spot lights that send two bright beams straight up into the sky representing the location of the towers. I never thought about it until now, but those lights remind us exactly where the towers stood, viewed from any part of the city, so we never forget. Never forget the attacks, but also, never forget the physical presence of those buildings that were representational of the strength of this great country, and part of the identity of this incredible city.
As most of us involved with motorcycles and machines that go fast tend to push the limits of ourselves and the world around us, I always feel like goodbye’s, no matter how casual, are important. Important because you never know when that may be the last thing you say to someone. Ironically, we would never consider someone with a desk job at the World Trade Center to have a “high risk lifestyle”, but ten years ago, that all changed. Ten years ago, a few thousand people walked out their doors that morning on their way to work with a peck on the cheek or a wave from a window, and didn’t think anything of it. When my wife walked out the door this morning, to go to a job in Manhattan, I kissed her and told her goodbye... then asked her to come back. I felt like I had left something undone or incomplete. I kissed her again and held her for an extra few seconds, before saying goodbye.
I don’t get paranoid and weepy when days like this roll around, it’s just another day like any other. Work needs to be done, life needs to be lived...to the fullest. High alert...low alert, anniversary or not. I’ve always felt this way and try never to dwell on the past, or let anything slow me down. Days like today do stand, though, as reminders of the friends and family we love and have loved, and to appreciate them.
Kiss your wife, hug your kids, shake your friend’s hand and pet your dog. They’ll appreciate it.
As I write this, my daughter is asking me to read her a story. I still have tons of work to do today, but taking time for a story is much more important right now...