We rode into the city on the LIRR – Long Island Railroad, for a 40 minute trip to Penn Station in Manhattan. I felt almost like a real commuter. The temperature this week has been in the mid to high 90*F. Pretty oppressive in the city environment. With all the choices of places to go that might be air conditioned, like museums, we decided to go to the World Trade Center Memorial. We jumped online and got tickets for free ($2 service charge) that got us in a few hours.
The main memorial is two large viewing pools located at the base of the old twin towers. Around the edge of the pools is a low wall with the names of the people who died in the attack inscribed. I’ve been to a number of memorials around the world. Some that I really didn’t think would be much, but turned out to be very moving – like the Vietnam Memorial in DC or Dachau in Munich. Others, like some of the WWII memorials just seem to be a pat on the back for military glory and the winner. I had pretty high expectations for the WTC memorial. Not wanting to seem like an insensitive jerk, but it didn’t do much for me. As Denny pointed out, the names along the wall are lost as you you look into the big pool and lean on the wall. The museum building is built, but not open yet, so there are no artifacts or pictures or even notes on the back story. Not that I don’t know the story, but the pools seem to come at you without context. Just one man's opinion, maybe it’ll be more moving when the memorial is completed.