Memorable Event and Memorial does it justice
It seems odd to say that one of the highlights of our New York trip was a visit to the 9-11 Museum and Memorial down at ground zero, but it was.
The exhibition and 9-11 Museum are truly an experience worth walking around. The attacks on the World Trade Center were one of those historic moments that many of us can relive in our memories like a tape playing back. The images are still fresh in our hearts and minds, and I still remember the feeling of being emotionally battered by the images I watched on the TV, but I couldn’t turn them off. I kept watching the images of the event and the aftermath for days after 9/11 – until I was too emotionally drained to take in any additional pain and suffering.
Unfortunately the people of New York couldn’t turn the TV off, they lived and breathed the experience in for months and months after this terror attack.
Memorable Exhibit: The Colour of the Sky on that September Morning
I did take lots of images of the other exhibitions, but don’t feel right sharing them in a blog post as they need to be experienced first hand. But I had to share this memorable exhibit about the colour of the sky on that September morning.
No day shall erase you from the Memory of Time. Book IX of The Aeneid by the Roman Poet Virgil
This art installation is composed of 2,983 individual watercolour drawings, each a distinct attempt by the artists to remember the colour of the sky on the morning of September 11, 2001.
Finch’s work centres on the idea of memory. What one person perceives as blue might not be the same as what another person sees. Yet, our memories, just like our perception of colour, share a common reference.
Eddie, one of the docents, talked about the team that worked on Ladder 3, a Firetruck that was crushed when the Twin Towers collapsed. He told the story of the firemen that all lost their lives. The front of the truck in unrecognisable, but the back end fared a little better.
When the group of tourists moved away from the docent, I asked him if he was a New Yorker and was in the city on the day.
He told me that he and his wife had lived in the local area for years, and when after the attack they had to move out of their apartment for many months. They considered moving out of New York and relocating, but realised that this was their home and they wanted to stay. So they moved back into their downtown apartment, and now he spends his days sharing stories of the men and women who experienced that day first hand. I wonder if it is cathartic release to talk through the experience with strangers?
[bctt tweet=”Take time during you #NewYork trip to visit the #911Memorial #911Museum. It’s tasteful & inspirational.” username=”rovingjay”]
The Historical Exhibition
The Historical Exhibition is in the central part of the museum located in the original footprint of the North Tower. No photography is allowed in this exhibition that tells the story of 9/11 using artefacts, images, video and audio recordings and 1st-person testimony. The exhibition is made up of three sequential parts: the Events of the Day, Before 9/11, and After 9/11.
Events of the day presents the day of September 11, 2001 as it unfolded. It provides insight into what was happening on the hijacked airplanes, at the Twin Towers, and at the Pentagon, as well as the courageous actions of first responders and civilians assisting one another, and the experiences of people near and far from the attack sites.
Before 9/11 steps back in time, providing the historical context leading up to 9/11. It examines the World Trade Center as a symbol and a target and addresses the February 26, 1993 World Trade Center bombing, the evolution of the terrorist network al-Qaeda and the development of the 9/11 plot.
After 9/11 addresses the world after 9/11, presenting a collection of grief and global response. It explores the recovery efforts and rebuilding at the three attack sites through acts of compassion, volunteerism, and public service. It also looks at the questions arising out of 9/11 and the ongoing ramifications, including 9/11-related illnesses and the evolution of national security.
This is the guts, hearts and soul of the 9/11 exhibition, and shouldn’t be missed. It’s a sensory experience that triggers the memories of that day, and you’re transported to a time that you didn’t think you wanted to experience again.
No trip to New York is complete without a trip to this Museum. It’s tasteful, thoughtful, and inspiring.
The 9/11 Museum is located between the South Tower and North Tower memorials, which are located in the Twin Tower footprints.
The 9/11 North Pool Memorial
It’s a smart move creating space meant for personal reflection out of water. The hole in the centre of these twin tower foot prints appear to disappear into eternity, and the cycle of the water echoes the cycle of life. Even though you’re in the middle of the city, surrounded by hoards of people, it’s easy to get lost in the movement and still your mind.
The names of those who lost their lives in this disaster are engraved all the way around these memorial pools, and they’re an unobtrusive but powerful reminder of the scope of the event on 9/11.
Even if you decide to bypass the museum, make your way downtown and visit these memorial pools. It doesn’t cost anything to pay your respects, and in a life as busy as the ones we inhabit, it’s a good opportunity to stand for a moment and reflect on the severity of the event, and say a little prayer of appreciation for the life you’re allowed to live.