And our Flag was still there.
Like everyone, I went to bed on September 11, 2001 knowing there would be little sleep. That day, I was on a shoot at The Mohonk Mountain House in upstate New York. Mercifully, there were no TVs in the guestrooms. I could have easily watched the news through the night, alone in my hotel room trying to comprehend a tragedy. Even time has brought little acceptance and understanding.
I woke around 3am. Not because of my thoughts or the restless sleep that a glass of wine brings, but because of a persistently strange noise. The noise came from outside. I wondered what in the world it could be. I got up and walked to the door that led out to the small balcony and looked up, searching for the source.
There, whipping in the wind, with an insuppressible strength, moving in a fierce yet joyous declaration, was the American Flag. It filled me with pride and gave my broken heart the gift of the beginnings of peace.
Today, all our hearts are beating memorials to those we lost as well as their families who mourn from around the world.
If you know of other destinations in the United States and abroad holding services or paying tribute, please post in the comments below.