A Matter of Balance: A Woman's Quest for Health, Harmony & Kick-ass Heels

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


This morning I have so many scenes running through my head:

  • The face of the Delta pilot before he shared the news
  • The sound of a fellow passenger proclaiming that planes were being shot down every ten minutes
  • The  hockey rink in Newfoundland where thousands of us waited for news and prayed
  • The Naval Base I slept at that week
  • The bar of soap from the Canadian Red Cross that I carefully protected in my pocket all week since we weren't permitted to bring anything off of the plane
  • And finally the sight of the American flag when we returned to the US the following week.

I have run  the post below for the past two years and I believe it is always worth re-posting.

Written September 2010

Everyone will at some point will remember where they were, what they were doing, who they called first, who they hugged first.  We will remember and reflect and pray in our own different ways.

At the the time I was fortunate to be part of an international team at DaimlerChrysler Financial. Belonging to an international team added a perspective to this event and provided a sense of support beyond the boundaries of my own country.

I was also fortunate that  my company did everything possible to bring me home safely that week. A long trip from Prague, to Germany to Paris, became even longer when I heard the news while in flight heading to New York. 

There was a uniqueness being on an international flight and sharing this experience with so many non-Americans.  We were also initially removed from the horrific pictures and news accounts, as we remained on the plane until 9/12 and ultimately in the care of the Canadian Red Cross and Navy for several days following. 

 While reflecting, I pulled out a folder of emails I received the days following from my colleagues from around the world.

This line came from my boss Stephen Jepsen of Berlin, Germany...

"So far as I see, nobody was able to go back to work today without the feeling that something fundamental had changed in our western world in seconds yesterday. ..and  that these buildings, symbols for freedom and pride, don't exist anymore."

9/11/01  From the plane window in St. John's Newfoundland

Sept. 11, 2001

Yes, something fundamental did change that day.  I hope that what we hold on to is the reminder of what's really important in life.  I believe that we can keep the kindness and courage that was shown during that time alive in our words and actions every day. 

The moment that will forever be burned in my memory is finally reaching US soil and seeing the American flag, the true symbol of our freedom and pride, flying brightly.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for sharing your memories of that day. We're glad we could bring some comfort to you and other passengers during such a difficult time.

- Janice on behalf of the Canadian Red Cross