Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The National September 11 Memorial Museum

As I mentioned in my last post, Fermin and I were in NYC last week.  Today I want to write a little bit more about visiting the 9/11 Memorial Museum.

I wasn't even aware that there is a National September 11 Memorial Museum.  I remember visiting NY a year or two after 9/11.  I walked by the ground zero area, just to see what was going on.  So this time, many years later, I was interested to see what they ended up doing. I knew there was some sort of memorial structure being planned, but I was pretty unfamiliar and didn't know what to expect.

There are two huge "pools"- I don't know what else to call them.  They are massive, and sad, and beautiful.  And they are in the exact spots that World Trade Center Tower 1 and 2 were located before 9/11.  The names of all the people who were lost that day are etched in stone around the pool.
9/11 Memorial Site

Another shot, showing the names
But if you notice the crowd of people in the top photo~ well that's the line to get into the museum.  Loads of people.  But we were right there, so we figured we might as well buy our tickets and get in line.

The museum is sad, beautiful and tragic.  I can completely understand that many Americans will never want to see that site.  It is, however, a piece of history, and it honors all the people who lost their lives that day.  In a big way.

It took as a couple of hours to get through the museum, and by the end of it, we were exhausted.  It was sort of like seeing a movie like "Shindler's List"~  Very well done, meaningful, and important.  But so painful.

Two things really stood out for me, and I will probably never forget the images.  One, was a room of four walls completely covered with the pictures of the thousands of people who died that day.  Many of them so young, and in the prime of their lives.  To see those faces, all in one room, with nothing else--- Very heavy.

The other thing that I keep thinking about was the loop of images on a video screen showing people who witnessed the tragedies of that day.  In nearly every single image (and their were many- 3 screens of different loops of photographs), the people pictured had either their hand covering their wide open mouth, or had their hands up, covering their head.  Those two things (covering the mouth, covering the head) must be a human reflex.  Like I said, I saw images of so many different people reacting almost exactly the same, that I figure it's got to be something in our shared DNA.

I think it's beautiful, what they've done.  I love those pools.  And I love the way they honored those lost on that horrific day in America.  And I ♥ NY- Now, more than ever.
The beautiful One World Trade Center

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