New York Magazine

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(3rd of 5 pages of memories)

Trying to get to my boyfriend's apartment on the Upper East Side from Midtown and seeing friends I hadn't seen in years in tears on the streets, the lines to donate blood, and the crisp, clear sky. I remember watching the Cartoon Network because it was the only channel with no news and video of the event. I remember not being able to get in touch with anyone. Brooke, New York Metro area

When my sister and I tried to get my niece out of school... All bridges were shut down. We had to park the car and walk to Manhattan. The Police Officers were not letting anyone across the bridge, by car or foot. My sister started crying, and just then a woman who barely spoke english asked what the officer had said and when I told her she too started crying because she was picking up her son also. M. Davis, The Bronx

I clearly remember the gym teacher coming to my door asking, 'Did you hear?' I hadn't. As he whispered to me that two planes had hit the World Trade Center, I could feel the hairs on my arms standing up and the blood rushing from my face. What I remember most vividly were the worried faces of my 26 students silently staring at me. 'What happened?' one finally asked. Jane, Manhattan

I ran back home, to get my dog (of all things). I guess I did not want to be alone & knew I should acquire provisions in case of more attacks. I was at Leroy & 7th as the second tower collaped. Everyone stood in shock & horror, except my dog. He was on his back with an elderly african american women rubbing his belly. Both seemed oblivious to what was going on. It seemed bizzare to have such a moment of normalcy in a time of insanity. Anonymous, Manhattan

My most vivid memory was an older business man dressed in a pinstripe three piece suit dropping his briefcase and running. I was frozen, and seeing him, this symbol of order, quickly snapped me out of it. It also haunts me the most. Kara, Manhattan

Sitting in my boyfriend's apartment waiting to hear from him.... watching every single event unfold on tv. Then finally seeing him walk through the door about 6 hours after the first plane hit. I will never forget his tears and his look of horror when he collapsed after walking 3 miles to get through his apartment door. Beth, Manhattan

My most vivid memory was after being evacuated from 7 WTC, and being led onto the West Side Highway. It was the first true moment that I got to take a look at the distruction of both buildings. I was initially in a true 'state-of-shock'. I saw people falling from the sky every other second, and I just couldn't believe that this was really happening. It was at this very moment that I knew that I better stop becoming a spectator, and attempt to make sure that those I knew were OK.

My most ridiculous memory was when I was watching a man jump from one of the buildings, and a news broadcaster was yelling at his camera man for not capturing the horrific moment. What an asshole. Jason, Manhattan

In the middle of the chaos when I heard that the bridges and tunnels were closed the first thing I thought of was that I was a good swimmer. It amazes me now to think that I was actually ready to swim to New Jersey if that is what it took... Lori, Brooklyn

The smoke, the National Guard with automatic rifles outside of the armory, the people with no shoes on lined up to use a pay phone. Anonymous, Manhattan

Driving like hell to get out of Cambridge, where 2 of the planes originated. On the Thruway up to the Adirondaks to be with my family, turning south to go to NY, and then realizing I had to turn around, it wasn't safe for me to go home.

I remember the skies being really empty above and official-looking men driving past me, squished 7 to a car in black Town cars with suits and black shades heading towards NYC, the toll barriers were all free and people were driving like hell.

I most of all remember feeling like I've abandoned my city, my scared, vulnerable raped city. I felt guilty and that I was missing out on a collective event. I wanted to go home. Erika, Brooklyn