St Elvis's Day
he thing about 4 September being such a significant date for Christchurch is that these days I forget that only a week later is a significant anniversary for my American friends. It’s the 12th here, which of course makes it the 11th for you, and the anniversary of that horrible horrible day. Remembering 22 February and the many people who died makes me sad. Remembering 11 September and the people who not only died, but died at the hands of others, makes me feel sick.
On that day 13 years ago, we were supposed to be having a party at work. It had been a long hard winter term, and we wanted an excuse for a party to cheer everyone up, so a colleague and I had searched various calendars and discovered that 12 September is St Elvis’s Day, honouring an obscure Welsh saint. The name amused us, so we announced a St Elvis party for the afternoon of the 12th. That morning, as I was racing around the house getting ready for work and collecting up things that would be needed for the party, I heard a strange announcement on the radio – something about a plane crash in New York. We turned on the TV, and saw the footage of what had happened just a few hours before, and I still remember feeling sick to my stomach at the sight.
Needless to say, we cancelled our party. At work, I managed to get a news ticker up on my computer, and most of the department spent the day watching it, as the news just got worse and worse, and as America (and the rest of us) tried to make sense of what had happened.
I may not agree with a lot of what happened as a result of 9/11, but America, I felt for you so much on that day. And I still think of you all with sympathy when the anniversary rolls around again.
You know, it’s amazing to me…. how the clarity of that day and the days that followed has been obscured by people second guessing EVERYTHING about it.
By now the event has become so distorted that one can hardly think of it clearly.
Who did what to whom and why at this point has become moot to me. All I remember is that so many souls were snuffed out that day because of madness.
Yeah, there’s so much baggage attached to the events that I think sometimes people forget the simple fact that thousands of people died that day. And no matter what your political agenda is, that’s horrific.