I was in midtown rather than ground zero when the towers fell and I still get emotionally triggered by 9/11 memories or anniversaries. Less so about the shock of the event itself (as I was several miles removed from it, watching the inverse mushroom cloud of the tower collapse from a south facing skyscraper window).
Rather it is the memories of walking through the destruction, and the smell and sights (flowers, pictures) of downtown on the way to meetings several times a week afterwards, and of course all of the grief. There were multiple funerals going on down fifth avenue from St. Patricks, every day for months.
I remember the surviving firefighters and policemen congregating in coffee shops and bars afterwards; the sound of bagpipes; commuters sobbing on the train as they read the NY Times “profiles in courage” on their way to work every day, for months; a co-worker who lost two brothers; the funeral of an acquaintance, where their eight year old son, handed a folded American flag screams “I don’t want this — I just want my Daddy. I’m never going to see my Daddy again”. Absolutely shattering.
Experiencing the grief of others on such a scale made me feel powerless on the one hand and extremely angry/vengeful on the other. I understand more about blood feuds and cycles of revenge now than I ever wanted to.— Legal Tender