Here’s one of mine—and I share it with you in hopes of hearing one of yours.
Fourteen years ago today Kari and I and some good friends were in rural Italy learning to paint with water colors. Idyllic, huh? We were in the small Tuscan hill town of Pienza when, in the early afternoon, I sensed the mood in the central square shifting from content and peaceful, to alarmed and agitated.
People began to huddle, and I walked up to a fellow painter who had turned noticeably pale. “Our nation has been attacked,” she said quietly, uneasily. Nearby, I heard a soft Italian voice, “Tragedia."
With no smart-phones to consult, we joined the cluster around a television in a nearby tavern and watched the crash of the second airplane.
Together–Italians, Americans and Australians and Brits—we stopped breathing and then we gasped and we groaned. After a few minutes, noticing that the tv reporters were nearly as speechless as we were, an Englishman said to no one in particular, but to all of us together, “There’s a chapel across the way. We should go pray.” And we did. Our little temporary, international tribe crossed the narrow street and entered a small church where hundreds of candles were already burning. And in my life, the calming, the making sense and the honoring began right then.
I'm in Tuscany again this week. Doing a little reflecting. How about you? What’s your 9/11 story? I’ve never heard one that didn’t help me know the teller better. Even if (like me) you’re being careful to not watch too much media today, I hope you tell your story—write a little bit about it under this blog entry or on the SeattleCoach Facebook page, or just slow down and invite a few of the people in your life to remember with you.
Like me, you are wired for stories.