The Train Ride Home
Hope The sun set gradually over the hopes and dreams of all the people standing, watching. Their eyes started to fill with tears when they realized it was all over. That there was no chance for them ever again.
The New York Times September 4, 1989
The last train has left New York City today, and for good reason. The United States have gained intelligence that terrorists are going to bomb New York City tomorrow. It is not known why; all that is known is that everyone needs to get out of the city, which for the most part, was successfully done. Tragically, there are still about 100 people in the city, but they are beyond help now. There is going to be no more transportation in and out of New York City because the pilots and crew need to travel as far away as possible with their passengers. The only thing now to do for those unfortunate people is to think of them, and hope that they live the best life they can in this short time.
Julia’s To-do List for September 4, 1989: Drive Lizzie to school Pick up dry cleaning
Go to grocery store
GET ON TRAIN!
Email Linda about book club meeting Make a macaroni casserole for Lizzie’s party Meet Tonya for lunch at Olive Garden Go on a walk for an hour Pick up Lizzie from school Drive her to dance class Get nails done for job interview Pick Lizzie up from dance class Help her with her homework Make Lizzie dinner Put Lizzie to bed Finish writing invitations to Lizzie’s party Have a long bath Go to bed
A Train Ride That is Homeward Bound… “Momma, why are you crying? Don’t cry momma!” “I’m so sorry baby. But this life is going to be over soon. Soon we are going to go somewhere else.” “No momma, we gonna stay here forever!” “But did you see that train leave, Lizzie? We were supposed to be on that train. Now we are going on another ride, to a different place.” “But momma, I love you.” “Oh, I love you too, my Lizzie. My sweet, innocent, perfect Lizzie. I love you so much. I want you to remember that we loved each other, and we had a good life. Can you promise me that? Because soon we are going on the new train ride, through a long tunnel.” “Oh, Momma I promise! Now what are we gonna do?” “Do you understand, Lizzie? There is nothing to do!” “Yeah there we have time before our ride. I want to eat ice cream.” “No honey, we don’t have time for ice cream. We are going on the ride very soon.” “So I want ice cream. If we going soon, then we should at least have ice cream first! Why should we just wait when we could have ice cream?” “You’re right, baby. Let’s go.”
Please leave a message after the beep. BEEP. Please don’t pick up. If you do, it means that my worst fears have been confirmed. I have been praying that you are out of the city. Hopefully, because you are not getting this, it means my prayers have been answered. Jim and I are fine; we are far enough away that we are safe. So, I hope you are not listening to this. Please don’t be. If you are, drive out of the city right now! Try to get as far away as possible. I know that your car does not go very fast, but please for my sake, try to save yourselves. That is all that matters. Just to live some more. It doesn’t matter that you have had a good life, just live a little more. Don’t worry about living a good next few hours. Just focus on getting out. You need-