Re: [gardeners] World Trade Center blast

penny x stamm (
Sat, 15 Sep 2001 01:53:03 -0400

Ranchmama, we are located 20 miles north of the WTC

The world has become silent -- no cars, planes, trains to
make noise. Since all 19 bridge and tunnel connections with 
Manhattan island were closed, there has been no reason
for the cars and trucks coming from Connecticut to pass
by. We are in the landing path of LaGuardia Airport, JFK, 
Westchester, Stewart and even some military helicopter
fly-path, and nothing has sounded for days. We're 3 blocks
from the Hutchinson River Pkwy, a major road to all New
England; we're 3 miles from the New England Thruway, 
whose trucking noises always reach us; nobody seems
to be going anywhere!  

Our local schools were not closed, but way upstate in
New York where my son lives, all the colleges were shut.

My brother Peter worked in the World Trade Center. On 
that fateful morning, he decided not to go in to the office.
He had an appointment in Connecticut in the afternoon, so
did his paper work at home in New Jersey instead... 

My hubby's brother Peter works 2 blocks away, and saw the
2nd plane hit the tower. He had an 11:00am appointment on 
the 74th floor of the WTC .... he sent all his employees home
instantly, then went and found his car parked in a huge
garage, got it out on the street, and began the long trek out of
Manhattan, by any exit whatsoever. I found him by cell phone --
he had reached 18th street by 4:00pm, and he only had a 
quarter tank of gas by then. People were walking across the 
Brooklyn Bridge shoulder to shoulder, like quiet, orderly ants. 
Eventually the police allowed cars to exit. 

The smoke, soot and flying particles seem to hug the skyline
of New York traveling rather in a south-easterly direction. By
yesterday the winds had shifted, and the foul stuff began its 
crawl up Manhattan. Even the TV people in their air conditioned
broadcast studios could smell the smoke by then. We were
warned to close up our houses, and not drink the water, but the
smoke somehow never quite reached us. Instead the thunder
storm began, sending down torrents of water, and creating a
river underneath the rubble downtown, making footing very 
slippery.  Of course, we were all cut off from our computers,
first because the wires were so overcrowded, and then 
because of the lightning. 
My sin-in-law was stretched out on a table stark naked except 
for his skivvies way up at the Veteran's Adm. Hospital in New
Haven, Ct., which I'll bet is 80 miles north of here, at 10:00am
that morning. He had fasted for 48 hrs., had suffered thru 3
laxatives, and they had marked two circles on his belly with a 
grease pencil, had fastened  a tourniquet on his arm and
the nurse had the needle touching his skin for an injection --
when some supervisor stormed into the room and ordered
all procedures stopped, for the hospital had to get ready to
receive the injured from New York City... but the nurse said
to him, as long as you are here, would you like to give 
some blood ....???

But it's the silence which is the most remarkable part of this
thing. It's too cold for crickets, and the birds have flown away,
it seems. I saw one car on the street this entire day! By 
Thursday we HAD to get to New Jersey, so we drove north to
the Tappan Zee Bridge over the Hudson River where zillions
of big trucks and small cars always travel, and it was empty.
Friday night we HAD to reach Connecticut, and both the
Parkway and the Thruway were almost empty -- and I am
just realizing:  there have been NO gardeners in the area
all week -- no machines, no blowers, no shouting in Spanish, 
just silence . . .  No garbage pickup, no Postal Service. Silence.

Penny, NY


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