Living Below Your Means
Re: London Bombings

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By ZootsTwin
July 7, 2005

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I am not a New Yorker, or a Londoner -- I live in Atlanta. But I've visited New York and London so many times that I feel a close kinship with those cities, and the people that live there. Whoever said that the London bombings brought 9/11 screeching back into our heads was perfectly right -- that sickening feeling like you've been kicked in the stomach, the panic-stricken worry about family and friends, the rush of fight-or-flight adrenalin that comes when you wonder if it's over or if other cities are going to be hit, the paralyzing anger that comes from having this happen in a place that you love and feel so connected to.

For me, the straw that broke the camel's back of my resolve was seeing the names of the places that had been hit -- Edgware Road, Russell Square, King's Cross. I've been to those places a hundred times, but especially Edgware Road, which was the closest station to the home of some friends with whom I stayed while I was there on my first trip to London. For me, hearing that one of the bombs had been there was like hearing that the North Springs MARTA station in Atlanta had been hit -- it's like they hit my very backyard.

So today, I mourn with London, and with the UK, and with Europe, and with the world. But I will not be paralyzed by fear. Friends today asked me if I would be afraid to go to London now, and my response was immediate: never. The sacred silence of St. Paul's, the aching beauty of Westminster, the splash of the fountains in Piccadilly, the delicacy of the tiny little portrait of Jane Austen in the National Portrait Gallery, and even the charm of not being able to get an ice cube without asking with an unmistakably American accent, and a thousand other endearments this city has bestowed upon my heart will always, always, always draw me back.

My heart is with you, London -- always.


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