There can be no more humbling experience in New York than visiting the 9/11 Memorial. While the museum is still a work in progress and won't open until next year, the memorial site with its already-iconic fountains are a sobering and well-executed memorial to that day and those whose lives were snuffed out or forever changed.
It's a strange place to visit. Saturday I stood with a family from Ohio on one side of me trying to explain 9/11 to their two children, neither alive on that horrible day. On the other side was a man in his 60s, standing stoically in front of a single name for more than 20 minutes, staring at the letters blasted into the hard steel face and the cascading water just beyond it. Had he lost a son or daughter? A friend? Who was the name in relationship to him? Respect, courtesy and honor kept me from asking, although I suspect if I had, he would have appreciated the chance to share that life with a total stranger.
Just under the slanted wall filled with the names of those lost in the towers, on the flights, and in the previous attack on the WTC in 1993, the water pools waiting for its steep cascading fall down the walls that make up the footprints of the no-gone towers. I dipped my fingers in and crossed myself. A theologian might have noted the fountain wasn't technically holy water, but I can't think of any water more holy and sacred.
I could wax on about it, but I think images of the site itself do far more justice.