As I sip my tea on this dreary NYC afternoon, the timeline of the day plays in a continuous loop in my mind:

At 8:46 a.m. American Flight 11 from Boston crashed into the North Tower at the World Trade Center.

At 9:03 a.m. United Flight 175 from Boston crashed into the South Tower at the World Trade Center.

from the sceneAt 9:45 a.m. American Flight 77 from Dulles Airport crashed into The Pentagon.

At 10:10 a.m. United Flight 93 from Newark crashed in a wooded area in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

Even without tea‘s L-Theanine, one cannot forget where they were, what they were doing on September 11, 2001. We cannot forget the confusion, horror, and sadness that played through the day. We will not forget how, as New Yorkers (and later, as Americans), it brought us together in these emotions.

But most of all, we must remember the cost of the lives lost in the attack and subsequent rescue effort, the families destroyed, and the millions of hearts broken on that dreadful day.

I speak today not just about tea, but about humanity.

If there is anything we can take away from these monstrous events, it is that hate and ignorance cannot bring anything desirable or positive, and it comes at a terrible cost.

It is through spreading knowledge, happiness, health and love that we can truly create something wonderful and lasting.