I’m participating in Amy Johnson Crow’s 52 Ancestor Challenge and the writing prompt for Week # 50 is Witness to History.
It sure seems like this year, 2020 has been something for the history books doesn’t it? I mean, think about it… a global pandemic, a global movement for racial justice, the Australian bush fires, just to name a few… The world has certainly seen a whole lot of changes in our very recent past. Even thinking back to the short time in the world’s history since I was born in the mid 70’s, the world has changed astronomically.
Here’s my little list of the moments in history that I have been witness to, sort of a “where were you when” questionnaire to myself.
1974 – The year I was born. The population of the Earth was 4 Billion people. Since then it has ballooned to almost 8 Billion people today!!
1975 – The Vietnam war ends. Bill Gates and Paul Allen found Microsoft. Although I don’t remember these events as they happened, since I was a toddler at the time, they are both very significant points in our history.
1977 – Star Wars is released. Elvis Presley dies.
The first mass-produced personal computers arrive: the Commodore PET, the Apple II and the TRS-80/Model I. With the release of home based computers, our lives were forever changed. Although computers looked a whole lot different back then didn’t they?! Remember floppy discs? One of the interactive text-only based games I remember playing as a kid was Zork.
1980 – John Lennon is killed. Mount St. Helens errupts in Washington State, USA – this I do remember! It seemed like the sky was falling all the way up in Canada where I was growing up.
1982 – Michael Jackson releases his Thriller album.
1986 – Challenger Space Shuttle tradgedy – I was in elementary school at the time, I remember that we were all brought into the library to watch the event live on the portable TV.
1989-1990 – Although there were other forms of inter-networking before this time, 1989-1990 was when what we now know as the World Wide Web was launched.
Here’s a picture I found on Newspapers.com of my then 72 year old Grandmother, Claire Perry (on the far right of the picture) going back to class to learn how to operate a computer. How cute is she?! The title of the article in the Vancouver Sun was “Seniors Byte into Generation Gap.”
1997 – Princess Diana dies in a tragic car accident – I remember exactly where I was on this particular date, up at my Dad’s place playing cards with the family when the phone rang with the sad news.
2001 – 9/11 Terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York. I remember this day so very clearly as well. We had just arrived back home the previous evening, after a late night flight from Toronto where we were visiting my husband’s family with our then 6 month old son. We were glued to the television for hours.
2004 – This was the year that Facebook was launched. I don’t remember it, but think of how much Facebook has changed our lives.
2008 – Barak Obama becomes the first African American President of the USA.
These are the just the moments that I remember feeling like I was witnessing history unfold before me. I do feel like, in the year 2020, we’ve all been Witness to History. So, I’d kind of like to just leave my list there. There is so much in the world that still needs to be changed, so much that really, really needs improvement. For today, I’m chosing to be hopeful that soon, we will all be witness to some more positive moments in our collective history and that we can all come together to make this world a better place.