My roommate knocked quickly on the bedroom door. Why was she up so early in the morning? I was asleep in bed with my boyfriend.
She didn’t wait for a response and rushed in. “Omigod, it’s armageddon. It’s armageddon!”
I was too embarrassed that we were naked to really hear what she was saying. I held the sheets underneath my armpits and picked my head up. “What? What do you mean?” I asked through cobweb eyes.
“You have to watch the TV.”
I got dressed and rushed downstairs. I sat on the carpet floor and watched in shock. The planes, the Twin Towers, the smoke.
I experienced an intense desire to get to work. “I have to go to work. Maybe they’ll know something more over there. We’re just watching the same footage on TV. I’m going to work.” By then, my boyfriend Douglas had joined me downstairs. We were co-workers and he agreed to meet me at the office after he got ready at home.
There was a bit of a MUNI backup, but not too much more than usual. I got into the office and saw our controller Greg, a New Yorker, sitting on top of his desk stunned. He got teary-eyed as I gave him a big hug. “I feel helpless,” he said.
We refreshed the headlines online for additional information. We wandered around the office not knowing what to do, what to say, how to help, consoling one another. Not much could be done so we went home. The same sentiment in the office surrounded the external environment. Where’s the safest place to go? They’ll go after the Transamerica Building. What do we do? Downtown San Francisco was chaotic, but still. I got on a bus and was in it for several hours, stuck. Some got off and walked. I lived in the Richmond–too far to walk–so I sat on the bus and stared outside. Motionless.