There are 168 chairs. The transparent base of each chair is lighted at night. I was there yesterday midday and noticed before I read it, that some are a smaller size because 19 of those killed were children.
There were a few ducks floating around on the moving sheet of water.
The twin portals at either end of the reflecting pond are marked 9:01 and 9:03. The first denotes the last moment of a community’s innocence and the second the first full moment in which so much had changed forever. A beautiful old tree survives on the site. Remnants of the bomber’s target building are there, and the back wall of the building across the way has been preserved with its scars showing.
The helpful park ranger answered questions and handed me a brochure. “You may walk among the chairs,” he said.
I walked among the chairs on a perfect day. The stubborn wind was a mild spring kiss. I stood before a chair bearing the name of a woman and her baby.
I cried some on that walk, and then I went into the museum on the site. It’s excellent – and emotionally intense.
After experiencing the museum I needed a long drive down sunny highways, so I took it.