9/11 Memory

As I sat among friends in Hebrew class on a hot September morning in North Miami Beach, the excitement for the beginning of fourth grade was still fresh. During the first three years of elementary school, I had become a pro at multitasking – listening, chatting with my neighbor, writing notes, etc. – during class. We all had. We were in the midst of an ordinary lesson when the door opened.

Immediately, the atmosphere of the room was transformed as the door swiftly swung open with a mysterious creak. Ms. Gordon, the teacher from the classroom next-door, walked hurriedly towards Ms. Adar, with a sense of seriousness in her step. All of my classmates and I stopped whatever we were doing, and directed out attention toward the two teachers as Ms. Gordon whispered something into Ms. Adar’s ear. We knew there was something strange going on by the look of shock and disbelief on Ms. Adar’s face.

Next thing we knew, Ms. Adar was wheeling the old-fashioned television set from the corner of the classroom up to the front and center.  We watched television on very rare occasions, and usually we were informed about it days in advance. On those lucky occasions, we would watch a VHS tape about bullying, The Magic School Bus, or some other educational video. However, on this particular day, we turned the television on to the national news broadcast to see two towers in flames.

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