WE were sitting here at No 5 having a cuppa and chatting ... as families do. The TV was spilling out rolling news in the background.
Then, in an instant, everything changed. The world changed. The shocking images coming in from New York silenced our talk. Tears were shed. The tea went very cold.
And so the 10th anniversary of 9/11 is upon us this coming Sunday and it is vital that we should pause and remember the mind-numbing, world-altering catastrophe in which almost 3,000 died, including 67 from the UK. Three hundred and forty three were fire-fighters.
My mind goes back to a day in the autumn of 1985.
Wigan’s Uncle Joe’s were on the point of exporting out famous sweet to the USA and that’s how I found myself handing out samples asking for opinions for an article.
I met a family by the name of Annunziato. They invited me to accompany them to the top of one of the Towers. The breathtaking views are in my mind all these years later.
The fluorescent lights swirled in dizzying patterns on the ceiling of the huge refreshment hall and before the visit was over, we went onto the roof of Tower 2 for a last view. Boy, oh boy, was it windy up there. It seemed a long way from Wigan.
A great, great experience – a happy experience which began and ended in impressive high speed lifts. And like every happy snapper, I took photos of these towering beauties in concrete and steel, one tower casting a deep late afternoon shadow down the other.
The World Trade Towers ... memorable memories at both ends of the spectrum.