Being in a different time zone (Norway), I didn’t hear about Boston being bombed until the morning after. The last time I’d been online, I saw that two friends from my RISD days were at the Boston marathon. One as a spectator, one as a participant. Thankfully, both are OK.
As you would, I started thinking about it. When the planes hit the towers on 9/11, it took two days to find out if my friends in Manhattan were OK, and people even called my parents to find out if I’d been anywhere near it.
London has given me much joy over the years, but also some grief. In the 90s, when the IRA and its various offshoots were still trying to level the city, my father was there on business when they struck. (I don’t remember exactly which incident, but I think it was when Paddington and Victoria were targeted) This was before cell phones were ubiquitous, and we had to wait for him to call. And when the subway was bombed in 2005, my cousin and her husband were there. Again, they were fine, having been on the other side of town.
And of course, two years ago, a bomb went off in downtown Oslo, which – horrifically – was only the start of the nightmare.
There’s no point to this beyond the sort of self-absorbed musing one tends to indulge when the world knocks harder on your door than anticipated. Looking back, though, it sure seems like a lot. It also helps put things in perspective and remind me that I’m quite privileged at the end of the day; after all, if you live in Baghdad, the terror visited on Boston would’ve been just another Monday.