Like most people who are old enough to remember and process the events that transpired on 9/11, I find each anniversary is a poignant reminder of a very dark place in our collective history. Even as far away as Australia, there was a very noticeable sombre mood when everyone awoke that morning to the devastating news.
Even as a young 18-year-old, I still remember as clear as yesterday coming home from the cinema after midnight and turning the television on to see the live updates being broadcast on Australian TV. Based on the known time difference and approximate time I got home, I recall that I tuned in within the initial half hour of the first plane striking the North Tower. I do remember initially flicking through a few channels on my way to the kitchen before I realised that the same story was being streamed across every single channel I was going through.
As soon as I focused on what was being broadcast and the gravity of the situation, I immediately stopped what I was doing and sat down. I remember taking a seat and watching for a relatively short period of time before seeing live on national and international television the second plane strike the South Tower.
As with anyone who saw those events transpire in real time, there were definitely a lot of mixed emotions being felt over the course of that fateful morning. I remember waking my parents in the very early hours of the morning to tell them what was going on and turning the television on for them to watch. I soon went to sleep with those images fixed in my psyche, wondering what it all meant and what was going to happen.