New York Day 2: 9/11 Memorial

When I heard that our family was going to New York, the 9/11 Memorial and the museum was the first place I wanted to visit. Not only because it’s famous for its beautiful architecture, but because I wanted to see the photographs of the people ,at that time ,in action. When I arrived, it was raining which led to an evenΒ heavier atmosphere. The entire structure, where the building once stood, was absolutely incredible.

There were hundreds of names engraved, and many were names of those in rescue teams. Just imagining what it would have been like at that time gave me chills and the videos I saw of people falling down from the buildings when I was little left me dumbfounded.

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Not 100% sure if this is correct, but a man passing by told me that flowers are put on their birthdays. I did see couple of the same flowers around the memorial, but still not sure if the fact is correct.

The tree below is the Survivor Tree, the only tree that endured the fall of an entire building. It was removed and taken care of in theΒ New York City Department of ParksΒ and Recreation and made its way back to symbolize “living reminder of resilience, survival and rebirth”. You can find more about the tree here.

You can clearly see the difference in the branches that were standing during the attack and ones that grew after.

I went into the 9/11 Memorial Museum to see the photographs that were taken at that time. Though I wasn’t able to photograph that photographs – copyright issues – I was stunned at how beautiful they were. They captured the very moments of people in sorrow, people as heroes, and people’s last breaths. Though I’m not a professional photographer nor do I plan to pursue photography anytime in the future, it made me want to capture those feelings some day.

This wall, believe it or not, is made up of unique shades of blue. At first, I didn’t believe it and tried to find those that were the same. However, my mom walked by, saying, “I think they’re hand-painted. You can never made the same shade when people hand-paint it”.

I couldn’t read the explanation thoroughly, since there were lots of people surrounding it. It’s most likely aΒ Pillar standing after the attack where people put of photographs of their loved ones in memory. The painted letters and numbers, I believe, were the stories.

As a Californian, the 9/11 always seemed so far away. It didn’t hit me as much as it did when I saw the memorial, photographs, and destroyed pillars and firetrucks myself. It was an amazing learning experience for me, and definitely one I won’t forget.

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  • I’ve been here last year and was very impressed by the memorial site. It makes you think about what happened there and that it’s not even that long ago. Seeing all the names engraved in the fountains gave me the chills. I’m definitely going back there next time i’m in NYC… just to pay my respect for those who had to suffer that day.

  • I haven’t yet been to New York but it is certainly on my list. I don’t even remember 9/11, as I’m so young, but this piece of writing was so very powerful. I feel the emotion and sadness behind the photos. I’d love to go, just to pay my respects. Thanks for sharing!

  • I love the moody ambiance of the photos… I’ve never been in the US.. Going to LA this Summer ! New York will be the next destination for sure. I think it’s touching that you write about this topic <3.

  • These pictures made me feel as though I was there with you at this memorial! You managed to capture the essence of the space through the combination of your words and pictures, and it was all so moving. Great post, thank you for sharing!

  • I’m from the U.K and I remember the devastation caused by 9/11. Even now it’s hard to comprehend. I don’t think I will ever fully understand but I am glad that there is a fitting memorial.

  • Wow! this post and its contents has me speechless! Being from the UK and being only 1 when it happened, 9/11 really hasn’t hit home with me at all – like you said it seemed so distant to me. But this post and your images have made me realise the scale of the event and the devastation that ensued. Thanks for sharing!

  • I remember seeing the memorial back in 2015 when I visited NYC – I went at 8am, so it was eerily quiet but yet just feet away there was the rush and hustle and bustle of people going to work. I just couldn’t take it all in and it did overwhelm me πŸ™ x

  • I can understand how you felt here! I visited the site on a University Field trip in 2005 and there was no memorial yet, there were fences and construction work going on. I remember seeing the mosaics of the children’s drawings and breaking down in tears, it’s an incredibly emotional place. That it’s become a place of remembrance and love is beautiful now.

  • I totally understand how you felt, I also feel it so far from me because I don’t even live in America. But I do remember when it happened, how my whole family was feeling sad about it while I was just a kid and barely understood. Looks so interesting and it certainly is touching.

  • Thank-you for this. I’ve wanted to visit the 9-11 memorial for so long. The last time I was in New York was the year 2000, and I remember standing beneath the towers, looking up, and thinking how incredible. I had no idea about the flowers in honor of a birthday. One day .. one day I’ll go

  • I love this post! We went when we were in the city and it was one of my favorite things we did. The atmosphere is truly amazing. Living down south, 9/11 always seemed so far away from me too, but visiting the museum and being right there was so amazing and gave me a whole new perspective of it.

  • I’ve been to new york many times but never to the memorial. I can only imagine how beautiful and earie it still is there. The memorial really is beautiful I need to make a visit.

  • Amazing photos of a beautiful memorial. I haven’t been back to NY in a while, and last time I was there the memorial wasn’t finished yet.

  • Wow, this was great. I was but a wee lad in middle school when 9/11 happened. However, as I’ve grown older it has occured to me what the day actually meant for the country as a whole. I can only imagine the strange and eerie feeling the place holds.

    On a side note, I work as a dispatcher for a sheriff’s office in Orlando. I worked the night of the Pulse nightclub attack and spoke to a young man who died that night. I spoke to him probably just 15 minutes before his gruesome passing. I imagine it’s how a lot of the survivors feel. I don’t know the man, I’ll never see his family or know his friends; however, he means a great deal to me. I will never forget his face, his tone of voice, nor his words.

    It’s strange how life works.