25 Years, 11 Days, 11 Goals

It's interesting that today, September 11th, I'm writing about my 11th goal. Generally I start these posts with a snarky comment about my importance, but it's hard to be selfish today.

11. Visit New York, and Ground Zero. -- In 1996 I traveled to New York on a National Honor Society trip. It was Thanksgiving week, and we took in the several historic sites on our way. Jamestown, and Williamsburg, Monticello, and Washington's home etc. We spent three days in Washington, D.C. and then went to New York. We were in the city for about six days. We went shopping, saw the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building and the World Trade Center. Most of my classmates were excited to go to the Empire State Building, but I could care less. Sure it was in "Sleepless in Seattle" but the Trade Center was the real star of the show. First of all the two towers were significantly taller than the Empire State Building and it had only been three years since these mysterious Islamic terrorists had tried to blow it up, and bring it down. It was a symbol of American strength. It was just as fantastic in person.

Since that day standing on top of the Trade Center, overlooking the greatest city in the world, I have not returned to New York. Five years ago today, I promised myself that I would return. Perhaps it's this year, this decade or at least this century, but someday I'll go back. If it's soon, then I want to stand and say my silent prayers as I overlook the construction and the remains of destruction at Ground Zero. If it's several years before I can manage a trip, I hope to walk through the proposed memorials and contemplate the lives lost that day. But rest assured, I'll go back. You should too.