Sept 11, 2001--The Cat Daddy and I had just moved to Ohio to begin his first assignment. He had to go to work while I moved our pets and most basic belongings (we'd sent most everything with the movers) into our little apartment behind Wright State University.
As I was taking in the first load of stuff a college student came up to me and said, "Dude, did you hear?" and I said "What?" and he said "A plane just crashed into the pentagon," and I gave him a quizzical look, because I thought he looked like he might've been smoking the fancy cigarettes, and I just didn't know what to make of what he was saying. And he said "Just go turn on the TV."
Well, I didn't have a TV right then, so once I unloaded our little pickup truck I plugged in the clock-radio and the dog, cat, and I plopped ourselves on the living room floor and listened there. To be honest, I was just numb--I already felt displaced, and adding a national crisis on top of that was completely discombobulating.
I didn't have a cell phone at the time, but thankfully our land line had been hooked up and to his great credit the Cat Daddy called to keep me posted about how things were going on his end. At that point the base had been completely locked down, so we couldn't have gotten to each other if we'd tried.
And then of course I checked in with the fam (or maybe they checked in with me), because here's my husband, brand-new to the military, and we just didn't know what that looked like yet--so it was mostly a quick "yeah we're fine" and definitely "I love you."
Then I went to McDonalds because I needed lunch anyway, and they had TVs to watch. After hearing about it on the radio, actually seeing the footage was stunning. The mood everywhere was somber, and even a little eerie. Because the gravity of the situation was just so massive, and the situation itself was more than a little eerie.
The Cat Daddy made it home mid-afternoon, and we called our sponsors--now our good friends--the Bees, and they let us come over for the evening. I think we ate, and we talked, and we sat there in disbelief. Ohio was also where there were some loud bangs in the sky that day, which of course freaked us out all the more. I'm not sure that we ever found out exactly what happened, but the accepted story is that it was a couple of sonic booms from some AF planes taking off (possibly to help with Air Force One security). Where normally they'd have waited longer before going supersonic, they were probably in a hurry, intentionally or not.
Then we all went to find some ice cream. The initial plan was to go to Friendly's, but they were closed. As was most everyone else. McDonalds was still open, but believe it or not I think they were flat out of ice cream. Come to think of it, I'm not sure that we ended up with any ice cream at all that night. And I never made it back to Friendly's until several years later, when we were all living in Mass and I finally partook of the goodness with Mrs. Bee.
So that's where I was and how I remember the day...