28 Comments

  1. Reading this Laurie, I have amazing memories too. Memories of when one of my classmates from KU came to visit from Kansas. We took him up the high speed elevators to a vista that can never be repeated. Never repeated in it's last incarnation anyway. I remember the tapestries hanging in the lobby below and the awestruck gazes on the faces of those who didn't call this place home. Thank you for helping us all to remember the wonderment of the WTC and the amazing folks who breathed life into the towers every day. Thank you also for refocusing me on what was my last memory.

  2. A lovely, moving piece Laurie. As I read I wondered if you knew what became of Joseph – someone who played a role in such a special moment in your life. You do a wonderful job of bringing us in to the evening with you…

    • The NY Times had a feature “Portraits in Grief” that discussed every single victim in depth. It was the most beautiful and most heartbreaking series I have ever read. Made me start my morning by crying and then I would pass fire stations that had lost many. Hard time to live in NY. I don’t think I will ever completely recover. Not sure I would want to.
      Anyway you can see if he survived through the series.

      • Laurie Stone

        Pia, I’ve thought of checking, but I want to believe he survived. Its too sad to think he didn’t.

  3. My husband and I wined and dined there so many times when we were dating. On the way out one night, I grabbed a book of keepsake matches. I still have them, and they bring back such mixed feelings about that place. So very sad, and yes, I agree. Let Joseph be where he is.

    • Laurie Stone

      Thank you for reading Susan. We never know the little things we pick up that will become dear keepsakes. It gives chills.

  4. Ariel Jacobs, an attendee at a conference being held at Windows of the World on September 11, 2001, went to my high school (not in my class). He perished on 9/11 along with everyone else above the 92nd floor, as all the escape routes had been cut off. I was in the building a number of times in 1973 (before it was totally finished) I had a summer job near City Hall and used to do my banking in the WTC.

  5. I worked in the World Trade Center for a time; I had been laid off from Fiduciary Trust in June 2001 and with a very generous severance package and a then-strong economy, I decided to spend the summer as a kayak bum, teaching and guiding at Manhattan Kayak Company. However, with paddling season and severance package both winding down in the Fall, I decided to attend an outplacement workshop that was part of the package. I had the bad fortune to choose the one on September 11th. It was in the World Trade Center. Here is my story from that day:

    http://frogma.blogspot.com/2006/09/september-11-2001-that-evening.html

    I regret that I never made it to Windows on the World. It sounds spectacular. I hope Joseph is alive and well and stumbles across this someday.

    Although it was horrifying to have been there, I am still glad and proud to have been able to then participate – even if it was in a small and stunned way – in the amazing evacuation that all the boats in the harbor carried out over the course of the day. Here is a marvelous short documentary.

    • Laurie Stone

      Bonnie, Just read your piece and left a comment. I get chills when I see (like so many others) how your life was affected by being late just a few extra minutes that morning. Chills. Truly amazing. Thank you for sharing. I look forward to watching the documentary.

      • Thanks, Laurie. I think having such a close call has made me appreciate life more. I was diagnosed with breast cancer last August and although it ended up being stage 2A and probably all gone with the mastectomy (I’m having chemo now but it’s more of a precaution), there was of course that early stage when you don’t know what the situation is – and I found myself thinking that if it turned out to be a worst-case sort of thing, “Well, I could so easily have gone on September 11th, so everything after that is gravy”. And there’s been some excellent gravy since then – I don’t live extravagantly, but I have gotten in some marvelous adventures!

        • Laurie Stone

          Bonnie, I guess that’s the only good thing about close calls of any kind. They make us appreciate life more. By the way, I watched the documentary and it was riveting. Had tears in my eyes. So many small (and big) acts of bravery that day.

  6. Helene Cohen Bludman

    You really captured the feeling of being so many stories up that you feel like you’re in the clouds. What an amazing restaurant, and those of us who were fortunate to dine there will never forget it. Beautiful post.

    • Laurie Stone

      Thank you, Helene. It was an amazing experience to be up there and can’t believe it’s gone forever. Thank you for reading.

  7. Beautiful, beautiful memories. I’m glad you shared them, and I understand you not being able to look for Joseph’s name. I hope he was one of the lucky ones, too.

  8. I have often thought of Windows on the World since the bombing. The towers weren’t merely offices and points in our skyline. They were also a great place of celebration and memories. Which adds yet another level of poignancy to this life changing event.

  9. I lived in NY and went to that restaurant several times. It was always so special to be there. The view (I couldn’t get too close to the windows either). The elevators felt like rocket ships, it took all my courage to just ride them to the top. It doesn’t seem like it’s actually gone. I haven’t been back to the site, I’ve been to NY many times since but haven’t ventured down to that area. Maybe because in my mind, I want to keep it there somehow. Lovely remembrance.

    • Laurie Stone

      Rosemond, I also haven’t seen the new Freedom Tower up close. I will one of these days, but there’s something so poignant about it, it gives me pause.
      Thanks for reading.

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