I know where I was.
I know what I wore that day.
I remember how I found out.
I remember what I did.
They say that every seven years, the body is renewed. All of our cells are replaced, all of our stores are replenished. On a cellular level, we are not the same person we were seven years prior. It's part of the aging process. It's why we look so different when we look back at old pictures and go "wow...we were really young back then."
I'm not the same person I was that morning. My hair is longer, my soul is older, and I have images and people and souls that haunt me each year on this day. I am not a New Yorker, I am not a Washingtonian. I am a Pennsylvanian by birth, but I have no ties to that rural Somerset county field.
Today, though, every year, I am a New Yorker, a Washingtonian, a Pennsylvanian. An American. I'm not the same person I was that beautiful late summer morning, which dawned with promise and ended in heartache.