Yesterday we visited the 9-11 Memorial in Lower Manhattan.
We took the Blue C line, from the Clinton Washington Station in Brooklyn and traveled about 15 minutes on the train to the Fulton/Broadway stop and walked two blocks to the memorial area.
The reflection pools are a perfect design ! The objective of reflection is achieved by the magnificent splendor of quiet, elegant, waterfalls; tears that will never run dry. Then there is the bronze barrier that surrounds the square waterfall pools, engraved with all the names.
The names are everywhere, all 2977 of them. Patrick J. Walters, Adam David Rand, John P. Williams, Gerard P. Dewan and on and on and on ....... !
People are everywhere, quiet, respectful, speaking in low voices, in all languages. And cameras, every shape, size, type, and phones. All trying to take in and capture reflection .......
We went inside the exhibit hall or building and it was tough.
I know everyone reacts to these types of museums, memorials in their own personal way, I felt like I had been at a mass funeral. The experience inside is self paced, everyone is going slow, everyone speaking in very quiet voices, and it's dark. You see many photos, TV monitors with videos from all over the world from the day of the event. The telephone messages from that day are what really got to me. They have them playing over a particular area of the exhibit and it was people calling their loved ones letting them know that they were in the South Tower and that they were safe. They knew something had happened to the other tower, and were calling to say I am OK. It was several recordings and they looped them so if you missed any part of the message, you heard it over and over. And then the memorial section at the end. You dont have to go in to that section, I did. They have a 8 x 10 picture of every person on a huge museum type wall, all of the photos are next to each other like a giant high school yearbook. And the photos are of every type and quality - some are professional photos, some are the type of photo you see on passports, some are candid, most of the first responder photos, the men and women are in their uniforms. This section has the pictures of all victims of 9 - 11, from all three planes and also the victims from the 1993 World Trade Center bombings.
The entire exhibit indoors is huge, cavernous, it's hard to describe - it's museum like, with a sense of significant loss, grief, the space is serious and somber. I wanted to be there and I wanted to get out - it evoked that kind of reaction from me. I am sure it is different for everyone.
About the reflection pools:
The Memorial's twin reflecting pools are each nearly an acre in size and feature the largest manmade waterfalls in the North America. The pools sit within the footprints where the Twin Towers once stood. Architect Michael Arad and landscape architect Peter Walker created the Memorial design selected from a global design competition that included more than 5,200 entries from 63 nations.
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