Yes, I remember where I was when the first plane hit the World Trade Center. I was asleep. What, it was 5:45am here. The phone rang and it was our friend Steve telling me that I needed to turn on the news RIGHT NOW. Don't ask questions, just turn on the news.
First there was Disbelief. I mean really, how does a plane just not happen to notice the ginormous skyscraper? Was the pilot asleep at the wheel? How sad for the people on the plane and those in the WTC who were obviously killed when the plane hit. But this was a fluke, right? An accident.
But then ANOTHER plane hit the OTHER tower and that's when it became obvious that something was very, very wrong. That this was no accident.
And then still another plane crashed into the Pentagon and another plane crashed into a field in Pennsylvania. And the Twin Towers came down.
Out of everything that happened that day, what I still remember the most was the Sounds of Silence in the skies.
I live in the flight path of LAX, Long Beach airport and the Joint Forces Training Base at Los Alamitos. All day, every day, there are aircraft of all kinds flying over my house. 747's, 737's, C17's, fighter jets, small single-engine private planes, even vintage DC3's that carry mail and supplies over to Catalina Island. Air Force One has even flown over my house. I'm used to hearing aircraft. And like a kid, I'll go running outside to watch the airplanes fly over. I always have.
But within hours after it was apparent our country had been attacked, the skies became eerily silent.
For a couple of days afterward, I strained to hear something, anything. And then I heard it. The sound of a small single-engine plane. I went running outside to see it.
And yes, I started to cry at the sight and sound of it.
10 years later, I still get choked up when I remember the Sounds of Silence in the Skies.