But I digress.....
My polling place was (as usual) chaotic. I did not know it then but it was the second of three places I would be assigned to vote without actually changing my address. I think they divided up the neighborhood into voting sectors before they put two large apartment building on my block .... in 1916. That year they assigned me to vote in PS 321. It didn't even occur to me in 2001 that from 2005 to 2011 that would be my kids school... That I would go on to teach an after school class in that gym. My kids were babies, I was not even thinking about kindergarten.
So voting always meant long lines and friendly interactions with my neighbors. I remember starting up some friendly banter with the man next to me on line. A well dressed, really tall African-American who said "You think you got a problem, I am a Republican. I'll bet they don't even have my ballot up there." A Republican primary in NYC? Who ever heard of such a thing??
So I cast my vote and randomly chose a direction to get to the subway to work.
I will not talk about the rest of September 11, 2001. I am sure that millions of people are ready to share their stories with the world. I am not even ready to share that day with my children. I will just say that I was not a hero nor did I attend any funerals. But still my hands are trembling now.
Plymouth Church. Sitting next to me is my friend Ino. He is one of the other Dads in the neighborhood who has the luxury of getting to go on his children's class trips.
When our tour ends our wonderful guide took questions. After all the kids got their questions answered Ino raises his hand and asks (Is this really a question?,) "Wasn't Lincoln a Republican, how come everyone forgets that it was a Republican who freed the slaves?"
I punched him in the ribs and told him to shut up.
Sometimes, just sometimes I like to think of September 11, 2001 as the day I made a Republican friend.
I hope I am not being selfish.
P.S.: This is a story that starts like mine