New York: Lunch Thursday

The US is now just terribly, terribly sad. The reaction has gone beyond outrage and fear to just numb, gut-wrenching grief. People are slowly realising that if they haven’t heard by now about their friends and family, they won’t. Stories of heroism on the flights which crashed cannot pierce the darkness of these days.

I find myself an imposter here. While I share in the grief of the many nationalities of people who have died, I don’t know the words to the songs that the Americans are using for comfort. I don’t know what it’s like to look at the New York skyline and see a hole there. I don’t feel like I’m a part of all this. I do know I’d rather be anywhere else than here: where people are escaping to the comfort of their homes and families and finally switching off the pervasive TV coverage in weary resignation. I am forced to continue following the events, because at the moment I’m a long way from home and no-one is able to help me get back right now.

I’m glad I was able to contact my families in Australia soon afterwards the events, and that my colleages in Australia have been sending me emails mixed with relief and sadness at the events.

At the moment, the training sessions – which have continued with grim determination over the last few days – are petering out as people become concerned with their own transport plans back home. I haven’t felt like lightening the training with jokes like I normally do. As the final day finishes, some people have already hired cars and left for their US locations, while others compare notes about their international flights and gambling on which one will actually take off.

I’m not sure my Friday night flight is happening at this stage, so I may be spending some of the weekend here.

To all who’ve offered help, thank you. I’ll do my best to figure out what the heck’s going on here and take any opportunity I can get to get home. I’ll let you know.

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