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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The USA (01/08/09)

By Norma-Anne Hough


The day had begun as any other. Spring had arrived, the garden was alive with birds, flowers had begun to bloom and I was feeling energized. After attending to normal household duties and walking the dogs, I sat down to a late lunch on our patio, which overlooked the river and the city beyond. There was a beautiful feeling of peace and serenity.

Suddenly the front door burst open, Jacquie, Bronwyn and Mandy came running in, closely followed by their three good friends.

“Mum” they shouted unison, “where are you?”

“Outside here on the patio. What’s the rush?”

“The Twin Towers have been attacked!” they yelled, running into the lounge to switch on the television.

Discarding my lunch, I ran through to join them. In silence, we watched horrified as the drama unfolded before us. Initially it felt like a dream, but as time passed, we knew it was harsh reality. The peace, which had earlier surrounded me, vanished as I witnessed scene after scene.

I will never forget the horror and sadness we all felt.

“How could this have happened?” Mandy asked, crying.

“It’s unbelievable that people could stoop so low,” whispered Bronwyn.

As with many of our friends, our normal daily routine was changed. We sat glued to Sky TV or CNN watching the rescue teams. My respect for the American people grew daily. Witnessing the bravery of all the firefighters, emergency services and all people involved was a lesson in itself.

Listening to the families who had suffered loss speak of their loved ones was truly inspirational. The stories of courage that came out daily were amazing. I am sure many people asked God why He had allowed it. I certainly did, time and time again. I never really got a clear answer, maybe because there was no clear answer.

What did stand out though was the unity. The American people stood united. The terrorists may have taken the lives of many people, but they were unable to steal the spirit of the American nation.

As the people of America move on this year to face new challenges, my prayer is that they will yet again stand united. May the dawning of a new era bring hope and healing to a people who have been to hell and back, yet survived. May His peace reign and abide in each one of you, as you put your hope and trust in Him.

“Remain in peace. Move only when Jesus does. In Jesus there is life, and he must give life to every living thing.”
Madame Jeanne Guyon.

God bless America and all who dwell there.

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This article has been read 814 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 01/15/09
How interesting to read about that terrible from the POV of someone in another country!
Linda Germain 01/15/09
VERY touching! Thanks for sharing your feeling of that horrible day from a non-USA resident perspective. Your empathy is so dear to read.
Karlene Jacobsen01/15/09
On a personal note: It is refreshing to hear words of encouragement from a non-USA resident. Thank you for your prayers.

Now for the story: There seems to be a brief tense shift about midway through, it could be just me though. However, this is overall a good entry.
Eliza Evans 01/20/09
I think you did a really good job.

I'm not sure how you know the front door burst open. Can you see it from the patio? Hear it?

Instead of just saying I will never forget the horror and sadness we felt.. try to describe how you did feel.
Showing through dialog “How could this have happened?” Mandy asked, crying... is good and creates a feeling of atmosphere for the reader.

I repeat... I think you did a really good job :)

Norma-Anne Hough01/20/09
Thanks for all your kind comments. It was a very traumatic and sad day and we were all deeply affected. As to how did I know the door burst open, apart from the slamming of their car doors and the sound of running feet to get to the door, the dogs just added to it all with their joyous barking welcome! Chaos reigned. lol Norms
Teresa Lee Rainey01/21/09
This was an extremely inspirational article for me. To see this terrible event through the eyes of someone from another country - and with such a heartfelt response - uplifting. Thank you. :)
Myrna Noyes01/21/09
Very touching piece! I appreciated reading your experience and thoughts of that terrible day! I also liked the quote by Madame Guyon! Thank you so much for sharing this!
Joanne Sher 01/22/09
Definitely well written and heartfelt! I loved hearing this from a non-USA perspective. Thank you.
Myrna Noyes01/22/09
CONGRATULATIONS on your 2nd place win for this wonderful story! :)
Kenneth Heath01/24/09
Hi Norms, well done on a well deserved 2nd place. Love to Dave and the girls, Ken.