Our girls are busy building a timeline for the 20th century. Included are, among other things, the Civil Rights movement (1954-1968), a picture of Rosa Parks glued to the 1955 spot with the note that she refused to give her seat to a white person on the bus; another date, 1932, marks Amelia Earhart's solo flight across the Atlantic; other important dates include my birth date, 1969, their mother's, 1974, and, of course, almost 30 years later, their own births begin, first Gwendoline in 2004, then Imogen in 2006, and Gabriel in 2010, and Iris in 2012. And then, because she read an article about him, Gwendoline included the date of Thor Heyerdahl's journey across the Pacific in the Kon Tiki raft in 1947.
It gives me an odd feeling to see our lives so constructed, around dates, our own seemingly insignificant moments celebrated at home, held in common with other moments of great achievement, natural tragedy, or epic human struggle. So often, our own lives seem small, of passing significance.