Saturday, September 11, 2010

Airspace Closure

I remember that on September 11th I was angry. Not at the terrorists: we didn't yet know who they were or where they were from. I was angry at my curtailed liberty. I had been ordered to land before I was ready, and was not permitted to fly for the rest of the day, even though it was a beautiful summer afternoon.

It was exciting, then for a day or so, with all the foreign diversions into Canada. The US closed its airspace first, so all the international flights that had not yet entered US airspace had to divert to Canada. Then a few days later they flew out again, exotic types and liveries for the communities they were in.

I originally wrote a longer post about the last nine years, but in the end mine is a different experience than those of my mainly American readers, so I decided to stick to what I knew.


Frank Van Haste said...

Dear Trix,

Thank you for remembering. It is going to take time - a LOT of time - for we, your southern neighbors, to sort this all out.

How long? I moved, fairly recently, from New England to Virginia. I find that we really don't have the trauma of our Civil War completely sorted out yet after a century and a half. So, for the aftershock of 9/11/01, we'll be dealing with it for decades, I'm sure.

You and your fellow Canadians are good friends...we know you'll bear with us and we thank you for that.

Best regards,


YDAR said...

I'll never forget that day - I was stuck away from work (I work in aviation in Canada) at a "soft skills" training which left me feeling sidelined. I knew that colleagues back at our base of operations were busy with our diverted flights and trying to help out other operators who had flights diverted to Canadian airports. I don't think anyone in the industry will every forget that day.

Michael5000 said...

Well, your mostly American readers probably have a diversity of outlooks too. Me? September 11, 2001, was first and foremost the day I decided to quit the job I had at the time. Secondly, it was the day a good friend moved back to my town.

And then there was the other thing and its big fat media circus. It was shocking at the time and obviously, like any mass-murder, tragic to those directly affected, and you had to feel for them. And of course it was pretty disturbing how easy it turned out to be to provoke my country into bizarre policy decisions. But I get a little tired of the assumption (not yours -- more the bland media consensus) that I should be freaked out about it nine years later.

car01 said...

My colleagues were en route to Washington DC from the UK on September 11th 2001. They were diverted to Halifax, Novia Scotia where they remained at a Canadian military facility for nearly a week. They still talk with affection of the immense hospitality they received whilst there.

D.B. said...

I was living at that time near Boston, and was originally booked on AA flight 11 from BOS to LAX (the one hijacked and flown into the north tower). I looked at the booking, and saw how early I would have to get up, and changed it to fly out the night before instead. So I was in a hotel in California instead of dead.

Ever since, I have felt that laziness is a virtue.