Remembrance of 9/11
We all seem to reflect on where we were on that terrible horrific day that our country changed forever thereafter. Late last night I read a few blogs stating this exact thing and I know a few that live there that are suffering right now, all that were in eye distance too. I am thinking about you today.
I was a long way away from the U.S.A. that day. In the late afternoon in my hotel room outside of Venice, Italy, I was taking a nap after a grueling long trip and knowing we would be flying home the following day. After my business-partner and our friend, Pino entered my room to wake me by turning on CNN International we watched in total horror as the second plane accelerated in the towers. Without going into much background with my business, we traveled to Italy for approximately 10 days every 2-3 months to buy our wholesale merchandise all except for the month of Aug. That month was always special, because we went the last week for vacation at Jesolo Beach and then started our work on Sept 1st when all the businesses/warehouses/factories would re-open after Italy takes the whole month of Aug off, the whole country for holiday mainly at the beach. I kid you not, they literally close down and only the beach resorts are people working during that month.
After hours of watching, trying to think and regain our composure we knew we had to get home a.s.a.p. Vittorio and Pino lives in Canada but both are from Italy – Vittorio is from Conegliano near Venice and Pino from Sicily, they were wonderful with resources and connections to help us with whatever we needed, especially with a Gambino in the bunch. We all knew once we left Venice, we were all on our own. I was going to Paris, Vittorio to Frankfurt and Pino to Brussels for our layovers.
My family started calling and many calls were made that continued for days. My prior injuries to my neck and back increased to excruciating as stress built up along with the panic of knowing I was going to have to get on a plane to get home. We visited the airport daily, but no matter what excuse we gave they would not let us fly out for several days, then finally they made an exception and told us that we may be stranded in our next destination. From Venice to Paris I was somewhat calm, but arriving there total chaos was going on in the terminal. People were everywhere, ones that had been sleeping on the floor, long lines and loud announcements. I hurried to get on a list to be selected to get out of there and board a plane for Miami. As I waited at least four times all people were told to duck and move back, as security blew up luggage that were suspected of being a bomb. They did not move us outside, we had to crunch down and hold our ears and hope we would survive. Me being alone and not knowing a soul that only added to my terror, but I had to get home. I was also blessed that day because my name was selected to escape and once I was called it was a running type of a scramble to get through more security checks to get to my gate. On the plane, my heart was racing and panic was overwhelming and to my surprise, the plane was not totally full. I normally request seating that is comfortable for me, that day I took the back of the plane where I could lay down across several seats along with many drinks and my legal drug supply to calm my nerves and hope to sleep the next 9 hours. Air France was not that friendly, but I handled the situation as I stated the best I could. As I have stated many times I am not a prejudiced person and never have been, however I knew by what I had just witnessed that the highjackers were of Middle Eastern decent. The last hour of my journey home, I got up to go to the bathroom; the one closest to me had a long line so I moved towards the front of the huge 747 to the next one. As I looked along the aisle I noticed two men, one looked evil (had that mean, hating look on his face with eyes without a soul) and the other was sweating profusely more than I had ever seen. Chills ran down my body with fear. When we landed, security came on the plane and removed these two men with three others immediately. I never knew why or what they knew or the reason for this action. Stepping on that plane that day with shaking panic and knowing no other options were open for getting across an ocean all by myself, never felt scared all the other times before being alone but this day was different in every way.
At last, on American soil, Miami Int’l airport, a deep breath was taken. I wanted to kiss the ground as I called my daughter at around 2:30 a.m. to let her know I was finally home safely and she was on her way. As I sit on the curb with my entire luggage, I thanked God for my living family, letting me get home safely, and protecting us all.
To this day, I blame the terrorist of what happened on 9/11, murdering the innocent, and in addition to that, the demise of my business due to the effects that it caused on our country and economy. Being a small business owner without unlimited capital and the U.S. Customs holding 3 months our merchandise (authentic high end Italian designer clothing i.e. Gucci, Versace, Prada, etc.) many months for checking something as simple as authenticity from that holding order before release of clearance was the most crucial time. Later it crippled us along with the falling dollar and the Lira going to Euros, etc. My health got worse as well, and other illnesses took possession of my body causing me not to be able to work thereafter, from severe heart disease, previous Fibromyalgia with chronic C-5-6 neck and L 3-4 back injuries, to disorders, conditions to other things on the list that continues and now cancer is in question. I have good days and bad, but I am thankful and I do feel other people’s pain. When I say you are in my thoughts or in my prayers I truly mean it.
On another post one day, I will state why I feel so strongly about fighting these damn terrorist and the war on terror, this is also personal to me.
If you wish, I would love to hear where you were that day and if it has affected your life.
P.S. SUNDAY VOTING-Late night or early Mon. a.m. Please vote if you will for more friends and new readers to possibly find me, it would be very much appreciated.
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