Remembering 9/11: Part 2

Yesterday, I began a trip down memory lane. Here is my recollection of 9/11. To fully understand my heart on the matter, start here…

The morning of September 11th, I rushed out the door to work, like most. Music blaring on my CD player. I had no clue that the world had just been turned upside down.

I was a Sales Assistant for 2 franchise Marriott properties, and my office was located in the basement of a Portland area hotel. I entered down below, as I did every day, passing through the break room to go to my office. Something caught my eye this time. Several staff stood in front of the break room tv with open mouths at the sight of planes crashing into buildings. I gasped. What just happened?! At this point, it was not being reported that these were acts of terrorism. It was still very early.

I immediately ran upstairs toward the hotel lobby. I looked and saw the room where the hotel served breakfast was packed. Guests stared at the tv in disbelief. The room only seated about 55 people, and it was crowded, but you could hear a pin drop. It hit me – all these people could be watching this in their rooms right now instead of hanging out in this crowded room. I quickly realized no one wanted to be alone right now. These people were on business trips away from their families. In this moment, strangers banded together as family and comforted each other. And as a family, we watched the building collapse together.

Hotel guests were now stranded away from home until airports reopened and flights resumed. Some were not able to go home for over a week. As a hotel staff, we did everything we could to make them as comfortable as possible. But at the end of the day, we had the luxury of going home to our loved ones and they didn’t. No amount of fluffy white towels or coffee service can make up for that. Our hearts went out to our guests.

I had a front row seat to the impact the attacks made on travel & tourism. I watched as an industry (hospitality) I was still pretty new to struggled. In fact, my position at most other hotels was eliminated as budgets were cut. I was thankful to still have a job and that my boss believed in me. (This made me work harder to find creative ways to drum up business.)

The days, weeks and months that followed were surreal. And I wasn’t even at ground zero yet…

To be continued… 

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. Cathy Plowman says:

    Wow…reading your blogs I get to know about you even more. I never knew what kind of work you did. I look forward to learning more about your life as I read your blogs!

    Love you so much.

    1. Jenny Lind says:

      HA! What’s funny about my entire blog is how uninteresting I think I am. But you gotta write what you know! LOL!

      I have now worked at the church office for 5 years. Time flies!

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