Walking Behind Some Firemen

Today I was in midtown, not far from Times Square, walking around enjoying the nice weather. Truth be told, I wasn’t entirely sure where Subway Station was so rather than walk in circles looking for it, I decided to walk in the general direction of my apartment, take in the lovely weather, and if I stumbled upon a subway stop, that would just be a bonus. 

As I walked I stumbled upon a fire station. I was well aware that it was September 11th. Although I was not directly affected the those events, I still feel the emotion of the day and try to always remember and reflect on them on this day. Outside the fire station was a Memorial-one obviously placed there by the station and then the conglomeration of red, white, and blue flowers left by those who were remembering in a more tangible way. 


I first looked on the flowers as I was walking by, thinking that I should take a picture and about 10 feet later I turned around and did just that. I’ve seen some other things related to 9/11 and I have taken pictures but something about taking pictures of something related to such an event almost brings on a sense of guilt. I don’t know if it should. I don’t take the pictures for the sake of it, but I like documenting things through photography and that what I see it as. But, today when I was taking the pictures you see on this blog I was doing it along with some other people, obviously tourists. I wonder if I feel bad because that is a tourist thing to do and I am no longer a tourist. I don’t think it’s bad but I wonder what true New Yorkers think of my photographic actions




Of course as I was doing this three firemen walked by. My luck. I coincidentally was going in the same direction and so walked behind them for a few blocks. There were dressed in uniforms that you would expect them to wear at some sort of ceremony which I assume they either had attended or were on their way to attend to commemorate the day. They were obviously buddies, laughing and talking as they walked along with their New York accents. I wanted to hang out with them but they saw me taking pictures of a fire house so I figured there was no way I could ask to be their friend. 


One thought on “Walking Behind Some Firemen

  1. Harvey, while it’s true that these things are personal to people, by photographing, you are just documenting the love and effort that those people put into those tiny memorials. I bet it would touch their hearts to know that you were personally affected enough by their gesture that it actually compelled you to capture the moment on film. Even though 9/11 actually occurred in New York, it happened to everyone on some level. In a way, even a tiny way, everyone felt that same horror and betrayal and some innocence is lost. It is your right, and the right of any ‘tourist’, to feel that you are apart of that sorrow and that you have a slight role to play. If you weren’t affected by it, you wouldn’t be human, and the wonderful Harvey that I love.

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