Sammy very graciously offered to let ME “borrow” his blog space this morning so I can do what many of us will be doing this weekend which is recalling where we were on 9/11.
Sammy knows where he was – he was at PawsAWhile Pet Hotel because his Dad and I were on an anniversary trip to Paris. We arrived in Paris on 9/8 for our second trip to France – the first being when we were there on our honeymoon in 1990. We had lots of great things planned and actually DID many of them like visit Versailles, wander the art stalls in Montmartre….but our trip changed on 9/11 when we saw on television what was happening back home. I’ll never forget turning on the TV in our room after being out shopping for souvenirs and thinking we were watching a science fiction movie…..but it was all too real…..and from that moment, what was to be a wonderful vacation became a nightmare. We were so far away from our family and friends at a moment in time when everyone wanted to BE with family.
There were other Americans in the hotel we were staying in and we all were at a loss as to what to do – something like shellshock I think….we sat in the lobby and talked about family back home…..several people were from NYC and were trying desperately to call family but were unable to get through. Those of us in the hotel became “family” at that instant – we just needed a piece of “home” and being with other Americans helped so much. The French people were wonderful though – very supportive, very giving, very kind.
We had to stay in Paris three days beyond when our tour ended because there were no planes flying…..every day we’d go to the airport where there was utter chaos – and wait for word. We had to be there, with suitcases, just waiting for the moment it would be announced that flights were going back to the States or we’d miss our chance. It was a madhouse. Finally on the third day of traveling to the airport and waiting all day only to be told no flights – the FIRST plane back to Dulles Airport in Virginia was going to leave! We were so excited….we stood in line with hundreds of other people who just wanted to get on ANY plane to go to the USA…..finally we boarded. I cried as did many other people. But that was nothing compared to what it was like when the plane landed at Dulles. Everyone cheered, everyone cried – we were HOME. There was nobody in the airport except for security people – it was, after all, the first airplane allowed back into the US. No chances were being taken…..all the security people hugged us and said “welcome home”……I’ll never forget it.
Sammy had been at the kennel three extra days and was mighty happy to see us when we picked him up the next morning – but no less happy than we were to hug him!
There’s NO place like home…..and every year on 9/11 we remember “that” 9/11 and the sadness and horror of seeing all the death and destruction in NYC, Washington, DC and Pennsylvania.
To all of you – take a moment to remember where YOU were when you heard…….we will never forget.
Thanks Sam for letting me share our story…..the blog will be back in your capable paws tomorrow morning!!!!!
Pam, Mom of Sam