We were having our coffee in the sunroom last Saturday morning when I spotted a penny on the floor, just under my wooden giraffe’s feet. Having just cleaned that floor a couple of days ago, I wondered where it came from. Maybe my husband’s pocket? Or mine? I picked it up and turned it over to look at the date on it: 1968.
That’s 42 years. That little penny has been around for 42 years…It probably traveled a few states in a car, and even a few continents through airplanes. Maybe lived in a jail for a while; or a palace; or was tucked away in a child’s piggy bank. I wonder how many hands have touched it? How many pockets has it seen? How many bottoms of purses have been its home in these 42 years?
1968—42 years ago. What happened then? A little internet search came up with these significant events:
~on April 4th, 1968 Martin Luther King Jr. was shot with one round from a 30.06 rifle. He was declared dead an hour later
~Bloody Monday happened in France on May 6th—one of the most violent days of the Parisian student revolt
~Forty-two year old California Primary Robert Kennedy was shot at 12:13 am on June 5th.
~October 11th marked the launching of Apollo 7 for an eleven day journey which would orbit the earth 163 times
~Nixon was elected President on November 5th
~The unemployment rate was at 3.3 percent on December 11th.
What happened in my life in 1968? Well, that’s the year I moved from Belgium to Luxembourg and had to change schools—I don’t remember any other significant event. But I was 9, and I am sure that just like any other year, it was one in which I grew up a little more, discovering the world and its rules.
Do you know what happened in your life that year?
I placed the penny on top of the giraffe’s head, right between the two horns. After 42 years of resilience, it does not belong on the floor.