Reading today that it will be ten years since that horrific day – 9/11 2001, made me recall the events that happened to me at the time. Oddly enough, I had been in the US on holiday and my flight left on September 10th 2001 out of Atlanta. I had spent two weeks or so on vacation after living in Jerusalem, and was heading for Geneva to meet up with my wife, as she had had to stay a while longer in Jerusalem to finish up her assignment.
So I took my flight and happily flew off to Switzerland, met up with my wife and we spent the first afternoon in Geneva shopping, lunch and such like. The next morning we headed off to a small village where a friend had an apartment. He was away for six weeks working in Norway so he offered his place to us while he was away. It was perfect after our hectic time in Israel. Somewhere we could really relax, take it easy, go for walks and generally do nothing. We didn’t know anyone in the village, so we kept to ourselves and enjoyed each other’s company for the first day.
The apartment was very comfortable and we settled in, not missing or even noticing that there was no television. So we carried on with our relaxing time, completely unaware of what had happened in New York. It wasn’t until a friend rang later in the evening to organise lunch for the following day that we had any idea at all. I recall him saying, ‘You’ve heard about the Twin Towers?’ Knowing my friend liked a joke, I was waiting for some kind of punchline, so I replied, ‘Yes, in New York.’ But his tone was different when he said, ‘They’ve gone.’
It took a little while for it to sink in, but as soon as I hung up the telephone I frantically grabbed my laptop and searched the apartment for a ethernet cable, finally locating one in the cellar. I hooked it up, found a connection, then my wife and I watched CNN, in shock at what had happened earlier in the day. We stayed glued to the laptop all night. Horrified.