九一一二十週年紐約世貿大樓恐攻經歷(The memory in person of the 911 20 anniversary )
I have retired from the job around 10 years, the frames of memory on the past career have been also gradually fading away, looking at the young generation who are busy and occupied day by day with their task that is we say the generation transition, and the episode of life are going on and on at the life stage till the last one.
This year is the 20 anniversary of the 911 terror attack by the Al-Qaeda and sadly also the same year that American troops embarrassingly leave the Afghanistan battlefield, the retaliation movements against the terrorism terminated and failed, this is a fetal strike to the people of the world at the same side specially those involved.
Time is flashing back 2 decades ago that is on the late afternoon of Sep10 2001, My sister and nephew who have immigrated to US and stayed in New York drove me to the LaGuardia airport, I was on a business trip to Europe and visiting her by the way back home, the flight was to San Francisco where my young brother lives, both of them have been in the US for more than 40 years, although it was Monday the airport was crowded, I always want to get a aisle seat when I am travel alone, so I said good bye to them in a hurry and move to the AA counters, I asked the lady behind the counter if I can have an aisle seat, she just looking at the screen and finished the check-in procedure, handing me back the papers, but it was not an aisle seat, I tried to ask again but she was quiet with an ice looking on her face, with an unhappy feeling I left the counter with my hand carry bag, when I turned my head to the airport lobby, my sister and nephew were still there and waving their hands.
This was a flight of AA (American Airlines) to San Francisco via Chicago, when I stepped into the cabin it was crowded、muggy and hot, looked like it was fully booked, my seat was at the left cabin in a row of three and in the middle, I felt squeezed between two big guys, the plane moved after quite a longtime, there was suddenly a thunder noise from outside the cabin, then came a heavy shower, the plane stayed on the taxing way for a long time, I could see a long lines of planes before the runway just like the taxi cars lined up in front of the railway station, finally after about two hours, with the heavy roar of the engines the plane was accelerated on the runway and rotated and left the New York in the rain shower.
It was around 2 hours the plane has landed Chicago and one hour transited, when I went back to the cabin that chilly and quiet mood struck me, looked like the last bus is going to the bus terminal, a really sleepy mind was arousing which I couldn’t accept the offer of a headset from the stewardess, couldn’t imagine how long that the plane have arrived San Francisco, it was one o’clock in the mid night, collected the luggage and joined my young brother and sister in law back to their place, it was already 2 o’clock in the morning, after most of things settled there was another hour when I went to bed.
睡夢中一陣響亮的手機聲響起，是老婆從台北打來，電話那一頭聲音有些急促 “喂!紐約世貿大樓有飛機撞樓你知不知道?”，看看錶大概清晨約五點多，由於腦子裡仍在睡眠狀態沒多回答就掛斷電話，不知過了多久電話鈴聲又響起 “喂! 紐約世貿大樓又一架飛機撞樓“，這時終於清醒但因只睡兩個小時好不容易睜開眼，穿上衣服延著樓梯下樓經過客廳來到餐廳，看到人在廚房的弟妹阿秀，要她打開在廚房旁小客廳的電視，瞬間不可思議的畫面映入眼簾，紐約雙子星貿易大樓正冒著濃煙，過沒多久濃煙夾雜火花，兩棟矗立的高樓像人為爆破般倒了下來，電視裡傳來的報導似乎還不知到事件的整個原因狀況，是意外還是攻擊，大家都愣在當下因為實在太驚悚了。
Suddenly my phone was rang in the deep sleep which was a call from my wife, she spoke in a kind of hurry “there is a plane strike the twin tower in New York, have you seen it?”, I was just not conscious at the moment, looked at the watch it was about 5 o’clock in the morning then hang the phone unconsciously, but didn’t know how long the phone was ringing again, ” hey, there is the second plane strike the twin tower”, this time drove me awake, but I couldn’t get real conscious with only 2 hours sleep, I walked down the stairs to the side dining room by the kitchen, I asked my sister in law to turn on the TV set, an astonishing scenery of the heavy fire were on the twin tower with smoke, and then the tower were collapsed like been manually exploded, there were many unclear messages from the broadcasting, was that a terror attack or accidents? but it was really terrifying.
My brother And I drove to the famous 17 miles sightseeing compound for a golf gathering after the breakfast, there were already a gathering in the club building, many of them stared at the TV asking one another the details on what has happened in the twin tower, but people were all calm and relaxed, may be the distance is the answer to this situation.
Since the sky have been totally closed after, that I have stayed in San Francisco for another two weeks.
Since that day Sep.11 2001, people then known the terrorist units Al-Qaeda was the troublemaker of the attack, they also made an assassination of Shah Massed, the Afghan hero, together with the Taliban just 2 days ago on Sep.9 2001.
The terror has been 20 years, the NATO troops opened the war with the Taliban since then and removed them from power and tried to established a democratic regime, the conflict remained for 20 years and the head of Al-Qaeda Osama bin Laden was also killed by American intelligent service during the long term conflict.
This event made many different stories for those frequent travelers, special sadly those innocent people scarified, when I recalled this event that if I took the AA flight next day in the early morning on the Sep 11th, then I have been become history now, I still feel terrified when recall it now, the God seems wants me to stay longer in this world and keep life more valuable.