Today is Tuesday, September 11, 2012. When I started out the day I wondered what it would be like to be in THE New York City on this anniversary. And, I’d have to say, it turned out differently than I thought it would.
First, I did not hear a single person mention 9/11. At home everyone mentions the events of 9/11. We talk about where we were, what we were doing. The fact that it affected so little of our lives at that time. We try to imagine the impact it made on the people affected.
But here in NYC? We don’t talk about it. Or if we do, no one talks about it with me. Perhaps because it did affect so many people? Perhaps because the people who were there don’t want to share something so sacred with those who were not. Perhaps those who weren’t there don’t want to infringe on those who were? Perhaps? I don’t know.
But I do know that today was still an untypical day.
On my way to school my train was late. I waited a long time. And when it finally arrived it moved at a crawling speed (for an express train, this is annoying). We were then informed over the loud speakers that the train would not be stopping at 14th street as the police department has closed it off to any trains. Now, my friends, this is not typical. The girl I was standing next to was telling her friend about hearing about a 2 train delay and they assumed the rerouting had something to do with that. When we finally crawled by the station there was police tape and cops all around. But we kept moving and I eventually made it to school. When I finally excited the subway system and had internet access I searched the news for reports of the 14th street closing. I found nothing. But when I looked later in the day I found this nondescript article: http://www.cbs6albany.com/template/inews_wire/wires.regional.ny/3b49b859-www.cbs6albany.com.shtml
It stated that some random lady somehow was hit on the tracks by a train and killed.
Then I came home and found another article. http://gothamist.com/2012/09/11/person_killed_by_train_at_14_street.php
This article explains that the woman jumped in front of the train.
But that was this morning. That was not my train. And I was not in danger.
Let me start out part three of this blog by saying that I was not in danger. But this event did take place on my train, on my way home. And I’m sure it will not make the papers, although it shook me up even more than the previous event.
So… the girl standing in front of me had a seizure. On the A train. One minute I saw her chatting with a friend and chewing gum. The next, her body was stiff from her knees to her neck, she had fallen into the arms of her friend, and her eyes were rolled back in her head.
Naturally, everyone reacted. And less than a minute later, she blinked and said, “oh, I’m sorry, I just got really tired for a minute there.” To which the about 5 women said, “TIRED? You just totally passed out!” (You know someone has passed out for a long time when you have the time to establish there are no medical personnel on a crowded train.)
The girl (correction, this girl was in her mid-twenties) blinked oddly and continued talking, which didn’t last long until she ‘blacked out’ again. By this point we were at a stop and it was decided she needed immediate medical help. A path was cleared to the door and her friend, in the midst of her rigid, seizure-like stance, tried to lift her. At this point she miraculously “came to” again and blinked in confusion as she processed the anxious faces around her, I’m sure wondering why her friend, a male, was holding her so closely. Despite her confusion the sea off people lead her out the doors and towards the exit, each of our car’s passengers relieved the situation was being passed off the appropriate medical staff. But we could all see her as the train pulled away, with her hero of a friend holding her body and strangers bending to her aid. She had passed out again. One vocal woman on our train responded, “we need more medical people here! AT LEAST a CNA!”
Now, if any of you know me, you know that at this point I considered passing out myself. I hate all things relating to the area of pain, death, blood, medicine, out of my control situations where people’s eyes roll back in their head, etc. This would not be the first time, nor I’m sure the last, that another’s pain reduces me to a limp rag of spastic glucose levels. However, I decided that in light of the fact that I had no friend to drag me home and I didn’t think the crowd could handle another such incident, I decided not to faint after all.
But I must say, this made for a very untypical day.
And here are some pictures of train stations, just in case you don’t know what they look like.