July 7 bombings – three years ago

Three years ago four suicide bombers set off bombs on a bus and three tube trains killing 52 innocent people. This is my recount of that fateful day. On July 7 three years ago it started off as a bright sunny day. My train journey takes me to Fenchurch Street in the heart of the city and then I would walk to Aldgate tube station. I got the tube OK at Aldgate and everything was fine until the tube reached Moorgate (2 stops from Aldgate). Then the emergency lights came on and everyone at the station was evacuated. That was at about 8.50am and no one knew what had really happened. For all I knew then, was that the tube system was broken again so I had to walk all the way to Farringdon. Got to work at around 9.20am, still none the wiser but just knackered from the walk. As soon as I stepped in the door at work my colleague said my mum had rang the office. It was my mum that told me that an explosion had happened at Aldgate and she was frantic to hear from me. All mobiles were jammed by thousands of people calling their places of work as the whole of the tube system had shut down. So from that moment at work we knew something major had happened. Again it was the Internet that kept us informed like when 9/11 happened.

As the story unfolded on the news it became clear this was no ordinary explosion. Terrible images of the bus attack was all over the net. By end of the day I had realized how lucky I was – the tube train I was on in the morning passed the tube that had exploded near Aldgate Station. The bomb could have easily gone off at the same time at my tube train was passing. Maybe my guardian angel was with me that day or I’m just using up another one of my nine lives. As the whole tube and train system was down for the day I left work early and walked to Fenchurch Street in the hope that the trains might start running soon. Outside Fenchurch Street hundreds of people were waiting too – I managed to meet up with my best friend whose birthday is on the 7th July! In a typical British “nothing will stop us” war time style, the pub near Fenchurch Street was packed and we went for a couple of beers. Even with such tragedy that had happened that day there was a cheerful crowd outside the station, maybe thanks to the beer. Luckily the trains started running again and I managed to get home. The next day most of the tube lines were running again but it was amazing how many people didn’t use them. Even for a few weeks afterwards the tubes were a lot quieter and there were more people walking and cycling around London. Today was a different story as the tube was packed, as I’m sure all the buses were too. It is such a shame that it had to happen and they are lots of tributes to the victims in the news today. My deepest sympathy to all those involved on that tragic day.

On a lighter note – Happy Birthday Marina!


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