It is amazing how fast one can kick in to Management Mode. At 2:55 I received a call from Mike telling me to get to a computer and get the news -- FAST. I was in a friends office so I made her get to a news service and then realized that if everyone was hitting the various news agencies at once we might have problems. I then saw her radio and tuned to the news -- QUICK. My phone rang again with my Boss asking if I knew and suggesting that I get on the P.A. right quick before we dismissed.
I did so and then managed to reach Squidette on the forbidden cell phone telling her to get quickly to the West side of town with her friends and to call if she ran in to transportation problems. Then and only then did I manage to get to a computer to figure out if there were transportation problems. (There really weren't.)
I find it a bit sad that by 4:00 we were all relieved to hear that it was an accident. A sad accident but, only an accident. Six years ago I would have gotten on the P.A. with solid information regarding subway shut downs and traffic problems and no one would have thought twice about it. Transportation problems in NYC are not unusual. It used to be a common occurance to have an administrator get on the P.A. in the morning to announce the day's subway delays. No one thought twice about why the A, B or C trains were running slow -- they just were.
Today, however, we had to think about how to phrase what we were saying so as to avoid panic and hysteria. Actually, despite that fact that this was all happening at dismissal time, there were still over a hundred kids in the building at 4:15 particpating in various after school activities. Just saying ... When I suggested that their parents might want to know that they were o.k., they responded "we already did." Good kids!
My thoughts are with the families of Cory Lidle and the other person in the plane but, I have to admit, my thoughts are mostly with all of those here in the city who relived the panic of 5 years ago. I'm glad to be home right now. I think I'll go hug a Squid or three.