April 19, 2007

12 Years Ago Today.

Bliggity Bloggity. I have no idea what I'm about to write.

Um, Its warm today! We went to the park! It was fun!

My rose bushes exploded open today, and the blooms are approximatley the size of a basketball. OK, maybe not that large, but definetly somewhere in the softball range. I would take pictures to show you how they survived the winter without any assistance from me whatsoever, but Chris took the camera to work a few days ago and I haven't seen it since. I keep forgetting to ask him about that. So, honey- while you're reading this tonight after you get home from a hard day of work: Where's the camera? Oh, and you look real cute in your painting whites. Yum. And, I love yooooo can you bring me a chocolate cookie from the cupboard? And also: I keep
forgetting to buy lunch meat. Can you remind me to buy lunch meat? I need lunch meat. (lunch meat lunch meat).

Did I just have an entire one-sided conversation with my husband via the internet? WHO AM I?!

Ahem.

Yesterday, Chris and I were invited to a fancy lunch to honor a woman in our community that has spearheaded a lot of the urban development downtown. Our friend Charlie recently bought and restored a building in a section of downtown called 'Automobile Alley', and he has had Chris do all of the painting for the place, so he invited us to come to the lunch.

It was really an inspiring gathering to be a part of, although our table of 8 felt somewhat out of place. We were all decked out in our nicest rockstar apparel, (Chris with his neon green airplane patch on the back of his jacket and Charlie with his cabby hat and foot long goatee...) while the other hundred guests were in fancy business attire and hailed from local banks, energy corporations, and other such establishments that have more money than I can shake a stick at.

Meg Salyer recieved the 'Urban Pioneer' award this year, and she spoke of how this city has really redefined itself in the last decade or so. 'Automobile Alley' backs right up against the site where the Murrah Building was in downtown OKC. The Murrah Building was the building that Timothy McVeigh decided to blow up 12 years ago today. Most of the buildigs in downtown Oklahoma City were damaged in that blast.





From Wikipedia:

"The blast destroyed or damaged 324 buildings in a sixteen-block radius, destroyed or burned 86 cars around the site, and shattered glass in 258 nearby buildings. (the broken glass alone accounted for 5% of the death total and 69% of the injuries outside the Murrah Federal building). The destruction of the building left several hundred people homeless and shut down multiple offices in downtown Oklahoma City. The effects of the blast were equivalent to 4,000 pounds of TNT and could be heard and felt up to fifty-five miles away. Seismometers in Norman, Oklahoma (16.1 miles away) recorded the blast as measuring approximately 3.0 on the Richter scale."

When all was said and done, 168 people had lost their lives and 800 MORE WERE INJURED.

Do you remember where you were when you heard about the bombing? I remember being a little girl- living halfway across the country- wondering how something like this could ever happen. I made a scrapbook from newspaper clippings and used to stare at that picture of the firefighter running with the little baby girl in his arms and I would cry. I didn't understand.

The house Chris and I lived in prior to this one was about 14 blocks from the bombing site, and its foundation had been damaged in that blast. Can you imagine how widespread all of this destruction was? How daunting the task of rebuilding an entire metropolitan area would seem? Where do you even begin??

12 years later, downtown OKC is experiencing a renaissance- life is coming back to the old buildings. Culture and arts are pushing up through the ground again. I'm sure these past 12 years have felt like an eternity to some here in the city, but thanks to people like Meg and Charlie, progress is being made. Rebuliding brick by brick. It took only seconds to bring them all down; it will take decades to put them all back up.

I'm proud to be a part of this community. I can't wait to see everything that unfolds as a result of all the painstaking labor and miles and miles of baby steps that have been taken towards restoration.

Good things always come out of the ashes.

Beautiful, stronger things are always built on top of rubble.

4 comments:

Mo-Mar said...

LONG LIVE OKC !!!

L.A. Daddy said...

A funny story. When we moved out to LA twelve years ago, we ended up staying in a hotel in Oklahoma City.

We were moving in a big Ryder truck.

When I checked in to the hotel, I joked with the girl at the desk, "I hope you don't mind that I have to park my Ryder truck in your lot." I regretted it as soon as I said it.

The girl laughed. She said, "We don't mind. As long as you don't... leave it there too long."

A month after the tragedy and she could joke about it. I was impressed with you Oklahoma folks :)

piper of love said...

I lurk in your blog...everyday it's a digest. I was in the bombing, got some PTSD, but it's subsiding with time. You are a cool mama and take darn good pics of that darn cute Ezra, love that!

cam said...

Oh wow, I don't remember it being that destructive! Thanks for refreshing my memory & teaching me a few things I didn't know.

I remember when it happened, I was 21 and it was my day off from work. I was feeling terribly sick and I remember watching everything unfold as I perched on the couch that day. It turned out that I had mono, so I had lots of couch days for the next couple of months...