Remembering 9/11 Attack: Even if Living means ‘Leaving’

It’s now September! Okay it is already the start of Christmas season. As accustomed, we Filipinos start to feel the Yuletide breeze when the calendar “ber”months strike. Well, not a special one, it’s not that imminent yet.

Anyway, what’s the date again? Oh, it’s September 11, the 9/11 bombing day. Hey, this is what makes this day special.

ImageWith my daily routine of heading on to Dad’s office located at the Ortigas Central Business District, I usually pass by these two prominent, conjoined buildings or the BSA Towers that stand-out among the others and even at an aerial view of Metro Manila.  Knowingly, it was also slated to be the Tallest Twin Towers in the Philippines as recognized by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) in Chicago, USA standing on a 3,037.32-square-meter height. And just this morning, I came to be greeted by them with a significant memory in world history.

Today is the 11th commemoration anniversary of the World Trade Center in New York which was hi-jacked by an Islamic militant group piloting four passenger jets on the same date in 2001 resulting to almost 3,000 people demised and wounded.

Melancholic. This attack’s a misery not only to the Americans, but as well as to every nation in the world. Presently however, do people still remember this tragic episode after a decade passed? Yes, New York City may appear as if nothing has happened today as it continues to be a metropolitan giant with its continuous growth in commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and so to speak, but this historical wrath which caused thousands of casualties must be commemorated.

ImageTraversing around the BSA Towers, it was as though I was immersed back to the time where WTC was bombed. Back from the streets, I saw less fortunate orphans asking for some alms from me. I was 10 years old then when WTC bombing happened, and as far as my cerebral cortices are concerned, I can only remember a narrow story of it.  In the eyes of these little kids I’ve passed by, I saw cries of despair maybe the same as those of the victims’ families then. Their every plea seems to reverberate the woes I was hearing on the television screens during news flashes before. Just as how they forced me to give a penny or food to fight against their protesting tummies, there I feel how the victims of the bombings crawled and strived to live. It is not only lives were taken by it, but innocent dreams were burnt by those explosions as well.

I gave them pieces of bread I have for my breakfast, and there I was, relieved and I felt like I have helped someone from the tragedy to survive amidst the collapsing edifice.

Moving on to my walk, an ongoing construction establishment nearby the BSA towers caught my attention which reminded me of another thing in lieu with the 9/11 attack again. The warning sign that hangs before its gates seemed to hurt and crush me as it reads:


My world turned in retrospect again. Big blocks of drooping debris. Trembling stones. Fire wraps. I could just imagine what would be the feeling if I was there in the attack. Helpless! The deafening noise from the construction frightened me. The core drills seemed to bore my consciousness to become more socially aware with the current events in the society. I was as if hammered with a mark to be a catalyst of hope and inspiration to the youth and the world. Though tainted with painful paints of the past, I am motivated to be bolder in whatever endeavors that may come ahead of me. And just like the significant others of the victims of the 2001 incident, I am taught to hold on while the pulley of life help us to rise up, to move on and start anew.

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Time is fleeting indeed. Tonight, this eventful day will again pass out and abscond. But just as what I’ve encountered and learned upon after my journey back to the past, let this leave a remarkable memory to you too to pray and continue living your lives amidst all struggles and enigmas life has to offer.

Every occurrence that happens to us is already written in the clouds. What we thereafter need is to continue living, even if it often means ‘leaving’ of someone dearest to us.

Credits to my friend, Gemar Outtahigh for the photo.

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