Sitting in my office at 16th& I Sts., NW, 2 blocks from the White House. Our office was full of our German clients who had just closed on their first ever DC office building for $500/SF, a record. The building was on Pennsylvania Ave. They were all so happy and we were all celebrating.
One of our clients, Olaf, was on the phone with his wife in Germany and said, "turn on the TV!" As with everyone else, we thought it was some sort of horrible accident, but then we watched the 2nd plane and we knew. I will never forget that feeling. Then we thought, the third plane is headed to the White House or the Capitol and we just need to stay put, safer inside the building than on the street.
We went over to their newly purchased office building at 2000 Penn, we could see the Pentagon burning from the roof. From the roof our our own office building, where a news station was, we could see the frantic activity on top of the White House.
My mother was frantically trying to call me from the beach because all she knew is that I took the Metro from the Pentagon every morning. Cell and regular phones just were not working. She finally got through to me in tears.
I stayed in my office until the evening because our clients had nowhere else to go, most of DC had gone home. No Metro service. I left and it looked like a movie set, literally NO ONE on the streets of the CBD of DC at 6pm. My bff/roomie, came into the city to get me. We went home and were glued to the TV all night.
Our German clients were stranded in DC until air traffic resumed. It was a very long, very somber week. Their families back home were so worried. They were worried their investors would never buy in DC again (not true).
The day after...trying to find out if our Loyola and other friends who worked in WTC were ok....we found out Eric Steen had been lost in the WTC. Trying to come to grips with what happened. Seeing the hole in the side of the Pentagon driving into work. Hearing the stories of that day. Seeing the horrible photos and videos. Knowing things had changed forever.