On my way to my desk today the notice board caught my attention since it had been updated recently and a page in particular caught my eye. Next Friday had been declared a holiday for Eid’l Fitr (the end of Ramadan, where the fasting ends) within the last few days. Enter a conversation about work holidays in America between my work supervisor who sits next to me and myself and it really got me thinking.
What really stood out was what being asked what traditionally happens on the anniversary of September 11th. I was almost six years old when the towers fell. My sister had just turned four. I still remember the morning and watching the news with my parents and my kindergarten knowledge of what the impacts of what I saw ‘meant’. I remember the 10th Anniversary less than I remember the actual day. But out of our whole conversation, the most interesting part was hearing about the event from someone on the other side of the world who shared what it was like watching the event unfold half way around the world.
It’s not an event old enough to be in middle and high school history text books and I have yet to take a college class that would mention the event so most of my knowledge comes from reading in the years since. I shared the photo of then-president finding out about the Towers by the Secret Service and Ground Zero that has since opened. For the summers I spent a week or two as volunteer staff out at camp, it always lent itself to time to think when I spent time with kids who were born after 2001 who will learn about the event in textbooks and were born into post-September 11th America. I was five. I don’t remember much of the 9/11/2001, some generations have “Where were you when Kennedy was assassinated”, my generation has this date and interacting with kids who were born after the date is the closest thing to “feeling old” I’ve ever experienced. If anything, it puts your own life in a timeline of perspective- a generation that will live in a world of the side effects without having witnessed the cause.