Some of the photos I captured on the way to 'Ground Zero.'

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. New York Scene

As much as people try to have an insight of what happened on Tuesday, September 11th in New York City, it’s been a struggle emotionally and physically. New Yorkers are greatly affected by the terrorist attacks of the Twin Towers.  A feeling of intense grief has filled the rest of the country and the international community.  Yesterday, I went to Lower Manhattan with the intention of seeing 'ground zero.'  I knew it was impossible to reach it, but I felt I had to do something, even just to be out and seeing things in actual.

I have been following different television footages of the terrorist attacks and its post-effects in New York and Washington, and yesterday’s images have given me a closer look at what has been happening. I took the M103 bus along Lexington Avenue.   When it was approaching the 20's, traffic began to slow down.  I got off and walked along 28th Street and Lexington.  Seeing a long line of people, with pictures of their missing friends and families  was disheartening. Great sadness filled the air. Heat and the wait did not seem to matter; people took turns talking about their concerns and searches for their love ones.

From 28th Street, I walked until I got to 14th Street, Union Square, and there I saw some people conjugating. Traffic was heavier and the air from 'ground zero' was gradually reaching my breath.  I reached a check point where vehicles were not allowed to go through. I got passed the barricade and stopped at a telephone booth to call my husband, letting him know of my whereabout. I reached another check point.  Security was checking people’s IDs; it was good I had my driver’s license with me.  I passed through it and  then walked further until I reached Canal Street and West Broadway. On the left side of the street, there was a barricade; on the other side were few bystanders and two foreign media people.  From the same site, I called my husband again letting him know of my place of reference.   I walked more and passed by a number of streets. My sense of direction was not definitive. All I was thinking about was how I could reach far near "ground zero. "  Street names passed my view- Spring Street, Lispenard Street, and Mercer Street…The atmosphere was very quiet.  Only few people were walking; stores were closed; there were only two or three eating places that were opened.  I reached another checkpoint, which was more securely watched. I walked another block on Church Street and a group of media was already set up. There was nothing much to see, so I advanced more to another site.  Another set of media people were gathered with their cameras and equipment.   Then, I walked to the other side of Chambers Street, near BMCC. By the waterside, there was a big group of rescue people  and volunteers standing and resting.  I was able to get an image of the skyscape above "ground zero." It was my final stop. Being there gave me a physical glimpse of what has been happening in the city.  I saw the people who were involved in the rescue activity and a part of the places that were affected by the September 11th incident.

I still don’t know what to make of what I have been seeing on television, but I was able to make some sort of a connection. I am saddened by the actual snapshots I had seen yesterday; my husband and I feel the tragedy and grief of New York City and the country as a whole.  I must say one cannot help being emotional. On the other other side of the tragedy came a touching discovery that people are ready to help and comfort others-an indication that New York will bounce back!

We hope that New Yorkers and people around the country would continue to be calm and be as  grounded and focused as they can. 

September 14, 2001
New York City

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