I don’t know if anyone got asked “where were you when it happened?” today but 9-11 is one of those days where people talk about the place they were when the towers got hit.
At the time, I was putting myself through college working as a skycap at the airport. Skycaps do curbside check-in and help passengers with luggage or wheelchairs. During the week of 9-11, I was on suspension from work and for a stupid reason I might add. Since I worked the night shift, there were periods of time where there was no one to help or nothing to do. I would do homework or eat during this time. Since Rob worked at American Airlines, I became friends with most of his coworkers so during the few hours I had to kill I bought a pizza and I was watching a movie while everyone was out. No big deal right? Oh, I was watching Eyes Wide Shut. The controversial Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman flick.
Well, that night came and went and the next morning Rob calls me telling me, jokingly, why I had played around with the airplane that stayed over night. I didn’t think anything of it. When I got to work, I was told by several of the AA employees that the pilot was complaining that his seats were moved and that some lights were on. Rob can tell you that there is no way I would have been able to get into that airplane BUT when they started questioning the AA employees one of Rob’s friends was quick to point out that I was in the lounge that night. So my boss suspended me for three days for being in an unauthorized place watching an inappropriate movie.
A day later, during a break from Mr. Golter’s Operating Systems class I over heard that they had bombed the World Trade Center. All I said to myself was, “Again?” because of the car parking garage bombing a few years back.
After this four hour class, I went over to go eat at Rob’s parents restaurant, America’s Restaurant, and his mom told me that it was an American airliner that had hit the tower. I was in awe. We then learned of the other airplanes from the news. Driving back to college, all they were playing on the radio was the news. I felt as though I was in a movie or listening to those old War of the Worlds radio broadcasts.
The college is right by the airport and it was so WEIRD not hearing airplanes come and go. You hardly notice when they are there but the silence just sent shivers down my spine. Lots of classrooms had TVs on showing the news. It still felt like watching a movie.
I called one of the other skycaps, Martin, to see if we still had jobs because I was hearing that they were stopping all curbside check ins nationwide.
So many things at the airport changed after that and Rob can sure attest to that.
Anyway, that is pretty much my day on 9-11.