> I just want to express sympathy to the various New Yorkers, 
> and indeed all Americans on our list on this terrible day.
> RaphaŽl Ingelbien 
> [log in to unmask]

Thank you for your thoughts on this unthinkable day. 

I was just pulling into the parking lot at my business at 9AM when my partner 
came running out to say one of the World Trade Towers had been hit by a 
plane. As we switched on the car radio to get any information, we were 
further stunned to hear a live broadcast of the attack on the second tower 
just past 9AM. 

All the Internet news sites were swamped with too much simultaneous traffic 
-- I couldn't connect to CNN, CBS, NBC, or ABC. We went back out to the 
parking lot and listened to the radio as things got worse and worse. People 
at work began to speculate out-loud over whether the buildings would 
collapse. Several people tried to reassure others that a building, especially 
a tower the size of the World Trade Center, was so massive that it couldn't 
be brought down by one plane hit. When the radio reports broke the news of 
the first tower collapse, some people gasped, some cried. One woman had just 
started dating someone who worked in New York and looked panicked. When the 
second tower collapsed, she went home.

I think the only moment of deep down fear came when they reported that yet 
another plane had hit the Pentagon, a supposedly invulnerable symbol of 
American military might. 

We couldn't imagine how such as attack could be physically possible. Then we 
found out that civilian planes had been hijacked to serve as kamikaze-style 
flying bombs. People worried that they had relatives on those planes. Others 
feared for their friends and neighbors in New York -- This town is only 70 
miles south of New York and many people in this neighborhood take the 
commuter train in to the city every day to work.  By this time, around noon, 
everyone went home. We couldn't concentrate. We went home to our families,  
turning on the television sets to find out whatever we could.

That's one American's ridiculously ineloquent account, RaphaŽl. I'm too 
horrified to write worth a damn just now.

-- Steve --