#269 | Wednesday, November 21st 2001
It was around 11pm South Australian Time and I'd just turned on the TV to see the first tower on fire. Then as I continued to watch I saw a second place go right into the second tower. Right away, I knew that it a terrorist attack. I continued to watch and then came reports that the pentagon had been hit, another plane had crashed in pennsilvanyia and that they suspected another plane was heading for the white house or air force one. I continued to watch into the early hours of the morning and into the next day. All I can say is that I was extreamely shell shocked at what played out before my eyes on TV!
Trent Slade | 18 | Australia

#254 | Thursday, November 15th 2001
My entire family was huddled around the television watching it live on CNN. (If we hadn't been flicking through channels we would have had no idea). As the towers came down we were in total disbelief that something of this magnitude and evil could be happening so far away. From then on we were constantly glued to our television sets waiting for any latest development in the investigation.

The next day at school not many people were willing to talk about the event, it was as if it never happened (or people didn't want to know that it happened). I can only hope that something like this never happens again and my heart and soul goes out to all the victims friends and family and to any other person who was affected by the fall of the twin towers.

Tim | 16 | Australia

#246 | Saturday, November 10th 2001
My diary entry -- Sept 12, 2001

Just like billions of others worldwide, I saw it all on TV here on Tuesday night as it was happening. I'd not long stepped out of the bath, and was thinking of getting back online when 'something' made me decide to put on the TV instead at around 11:30pm [0930 NYC time]. First impressions made me think there had been an accident. Had a plane struck one of the World Trade Center towers en route to one of the airports? Then I listened closely to the ensuing report, and felt my breath catch in my throat, my chest tighten in a panic when I learned both towers were ablaze due to a terrorist attack. Then, more news was broadcast about another hijacked plane had deliberately crashed on the Pentagon, and yet another commercial plane had been hijacked and crashed in the Pittsburgh vicinity, en route from Newark to San Francisco.

Before my mind had time to fully digest the entire magnitude of the catastrophe, I witnessed both World Trade Center buildings collapse one after the other. It seemed so surreal. As if I was watching an early morning horror movie. The World Trade Center gone?! NO, it can't be! I sat mesmerised in front of the TV, rocking to and fro in my chair, hands to my mouth, watching the chaos unfolding at a steady pace, feeling tears flood my eyes every few minutes, until about 3am when I could not take it anymore. Three and a half hours had somehow passed by in a space that had felt like only 30 minutes.

I haven't slept much since, and in the fitful sleep I've had, I've experienced nightmares. Woken up today with the hope that it's all been just a bad dream. Then, I walk out into the kitchen to see the newspaper sprawled out on the table with the giant black headlines and horrific photos covering the front page. Feeling my heart suddenly sink again. Switching on the TV to see the live news updates on CNN. There's no escaping this has really happened.

I am feeling stunned as the ongoing reports are leaked by various media forms, and my hands are shaking as I type this now. The complexity of this attack's planning and the enormity of its devastation is so hard to believe, let alone comprehend. Be assured; despite the fact we're literally on the other side of the world, it has not lessened the attack's impact on Australians.

I cannot imagine how the people there -- in New York City, Washington DC, and all across the USA -- who are experiencing it first hand are coping right now. My prayers, thoughts and sympathies are with those who have lost their innocent lives, with those who have lost loved ones, and with all of my American friends who are living through this modern day hell.

Leonie | 34 | Australia

#174 | Saturday, September 29th 2001
I was asleep when it happened as it was around 11:45pm Australian time. When I found out the next morning, it didn't affect me immediately because I didn't comprehend the extent of what had happened. The footage they shown on television over and over and over again reminded me of a movie and I felt detatched from it. When I got to school it was all anyone could talk about. A million rumours flew around and I still wasn't exactly sure what had happened. The one thing that made it real to me was not seeing the plane fly into the Trade Center over and over but the interviews with mothers and children wondering if their fathers were alive. The crying and shocked faces brought tears to my eyes when I finally realised the extent of what had happened. I may live hours upon hours away from the tradegy but that doesn't mean I am any less affected by it. One of my teachers came to school almost in tears but held a strong face for us, his friend had been in the World Trade Center on that day. No one will ever forget that day and everyone is forever changed by it.
Bel | 18 | Australia

#105 | Thursday, September 20th 2001
Being in Melbourne Australia, it was nearing 10:30pm on 11.9.01. I was lying in bed, and it occurred to me that I hadn't fed my cat. He was sobbing morosely outside my window.
I wandered out to the living room, where my parents were watching TV.
I saw a tall building burning. I sank onto the couch, despaired. I thought a plane had accidentally hit the building. Then I saw the second plane. Hit the second building.
I choked, and dropped the cat food. Curled up into a little ball on the sofa, crying. I was scared that such a thing could happen. I was worried for people I did not know and had never met. My heart was breaking for their families. I couldn't ever have imagined something so senseless, so shattering.
A plane hit the Pentagon.
The first tower fell. In the safety of my own home, a million miles away I heard the screams and the utter despair. It was happening inside of me.
I felt I had suffered an irreversible injury.
And the second tower fell. I screamed, and cried and sobbed, for I knew the world would never be the same again.
Do I sound incredibly sappy and flowery to you? I can't think of words to describe how I feel, only dissociated prose, please forgive me.
My parents forced me to my room, that I should sleep. Like I should ever sleep in this state, at this time.
I turned on my radio, to more stories of utter bleeding loss, to more heartbreak.
I should never be the same again.
So there you have it. I was at home, alone in my thoughts.
It could have been my father.
It could have been me.

Sare Page | 16 | Australia

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