"A mind once stretched by a new idea can never regain its original dimensions." ~Oliver Wendall Holmes

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

September 11th

You know what I think of when I think of September 11th? I think of Spain. I mean...I think of all the horrific awful things that happened that day. I think about walking into BGSU and seeing TV's pulled into the hallways and lobbies for people to watch. I remember how hushed everything and everyone was that day, the classes that were cancelled, the feeling of shock, the sober feeling. But inevitably, I also think of Spain. Let me example how this thought progression works...The first thing that I think when I think of September 11th is..."What year was that?" And then I remember it was the year before I went to Spain. And the reason that I so specifically remember that it was the year that I went to Spain is not so much because of the tighten security at the airports, although I do remember that, but rather because I remember what a laughing stock the US was in Europe. I remember how 9months later, September 11th was still being joked about by the europeans. I remember a feeling that many people thought that the US got what they deserved. It was kind of like, "HAHA United States, you've bullied the world for so long, now you got bullied back!" It was still a running joke. I remember feeling a bit taken aback that that was the sentiment, but later understanding why Europeans have this view of us. After watching the way Americans behave from their perspective, I see why they look at us that way. We're boastful, we're rude, we're egotistical. After awhile, my mind eventually wanders into reminiscing about the fun and adventures that I had that summer in Spain, and to the friends that I made. (Hola, Kas!)

I'm not saying this is right or wrong, I'm just saying...this is what I remember.

2 comments:

Kassia said...

I also think of Spain, because I had only been there for 2 weeks when it happened. At that time and immediately after, people when they realized I was an American were concerned and felt pity for us. I didn't see any mockery or anything, just shock and sympathy. Maybe they were just trying to be nice, who knows?
Since I was so far away, I was also very removed from how tragic it really was. The news covered it all the time, of course, but the distance involved created a sort of buffer zone to not comprehend it emotionally. It was not until I returned that I noticed how dramatically the U.S. had changed.

Kassia said...

I also think of Spain, because I had only been there for 2 weeks when it happened. At that time and immediately after, people when they realized I was an American were concerned and felt pity for us. I didn't see any mockery or anything, just shock and sympathy. Maybe they were just trying to be nice, who knows?
Since I was so far away, I was also very removed from how tragic it really was. The news covered it all the time, of course, but the distance involved created a sort of buffer zone to not comprehend it emotionally. It was not until I returned that I noticed how dramatically the U.S. had changed.