|A little rainbow formed in the mist of the cascading waterfall.|
Our first morning in New York we bundled up and walked across the street to see the 9/11 memorial. It was a clear, chilly day with the thermometer hovering in the teens. Just walking onto the grounds was enough to make me feel overcome with emotion. The loss, the tragedy, the families forever changed. I felt as though I could keep it together and then I came across a name followed by "and her unborn child". In that moment, it brought tears to my eyes. In one moment all of a man's hopes, dreams, and possibly his entire future were decimated. Walking around the perimeter of the Twin Tower's footprint reading name after name was a very powerful experience.
We saw several people smiling and taking photographs at the site, for us this just did not seem appropriate. Having people in these shots merely allow you to get a sense of scale.
Tips for the 9/11 memorial:
1. You have to get your tickets in advance online. They are free, but you must select a date and time. I recommend the moment they open. People always tend to run late or sleep in while they are on vacation, so there were not a lot of people there in the morning: http://www.911memorial.org.
If you do not you can purchase ahead of time you can still go on a tour with either a survivor, family member or another well informed guide, but you will have to pay.
2. Grab a free brochure or do your research before you go. Being knowledgeable about the timeline of events makes it even more impactful.