April 15th, 2013 – a day presumed to be one dedicated to sporting heroes running across Boston’s marathon finish line, in a split second, turned into a day of heroism across the city. As waves of shock passed through collections of runners and crowds of supporters, immediately, the falling started – runners, fans, families, roadside frameworks…and tears.
Two blasts, ironically in front of a row of international flags, the fabric of all nations left blinded and blowing with disorientation by the smoke of the explosions. One tragedy, in one place, and yet in one moment the world was once again connected.
The Boston Bombings, as they are now known, which took three lives – one a mere child of 8 yrs simply stepping forward to hug his father at the finish line, one a Chinese foreign student hoping to create opportunity for herself in her adopted academic home, one an adored young woman hoping to celebrate her marathon achievement in her home state – and painfully injured hundreds of others, caused a global rattling of sense of security, and bruising of sense of global community.
How could this happen? Again?
Within hours, as the smoke cleared and dust settled, the global connections became clear. While visibly connecting Boston with Chechnya with Russia based on the damage caused by two men seeking to inflict terror on their own country of domicile, the invisible connections also became more and more visible:
– competing sports teams, standing in silence (and, meaningful musical salute) across playing fields
– citizens of the nation and world, standing in support of defeat of inexplicable, inhumane behaviour,
– governments, standing tall, unwilling to accept the horrific actions of a few to act as a reflection of cross-border ideologies and relationships,
One place, one moment, connecting one world.
Once again, the borders of our world are revealing how fading they are. Not only are we connected by pleasure – the joy of travel, the awe of e-connectivity, the promise of business opportunity, the hope of possibility – we are connected by pain.
A world on the move, and on the mend.
Copyright: ANITA MENDIRATTA 2013