When I first visited NY in May 2014, I was impressed with the tall skyscrapers and the huge rush on the roads that reminded me of India in more than many ways. I noticed that the city had a glossy touch of style and elegance that was nowhere to be found. But what I didn’t notice was this – a layer of pain covered with memories and aching tales was also painted in the midst of the glamorous world that enveloped the city.
I eventually happened to visit the 9/11 memorial as well. I had heard about the 9/11 incident numerous times before, who hasn't, right? 9/11-The unforgettable incident that shook the world and changed the course of a country forever. But I hadn't so much heard about the memorial because it had opened up recently for the world to look at.
As I stared down at the black stoned memorial, peering to get a better view in the midst of tourist who were thronging for pictures, I noticed small waterfalls throughout the open black stoned huge space. I also noticed that they had engraved the names of those who lost their lives in the attack. That was it. I simply posed for a couple of pictures and declared that NYC was a beautiful place for its view from empire state building, statue of liberty and the Times Square. I had summed NYC in these three glossy famous places.
Little did I know that I was completely wrong. Recently, I watched a documentary ‘Ground Zero’ on Netflix that spoke about the meticulous planning that underwent into the construction of the new tower and the memorial. The one hour episode showed me the pain and the shock and the broken lives of the people who witnessed the attack, who worked afterward to build the broken lives and those who involved themselves into rising up with a new tower and a memorial.
I was simply touched by the courage and confidence the people had displayed in the aftermath of the attack. I had always thought that pain was subjective to individuals but when I saw the birth of the memorial in the documentary, I realized that a million hearts can feel the same pain and be affected by it to the same degree.
But what amazed me the most is the way the memorial is built to depict that the hollowness will remain forever in the space where the towers were once standing, the emptiness will never be replaced. Though the pain will be there forever, the memorial speaks of true courage.
I would not like to explain more in words for it will always remain an unexplainable situation. I would simply like to salute all those brave hearts who will continue to live forever through the memorial.