This photo of me was taken exactly 30 years ago, when I worked for Aerospace Technologies of Australia, servicing Boeing 747s. There were 200 of us at the hanger, and only 3 girls. I was 19, but the littlest, and that gave me the most exciting jobs. They had me up in the tail, inside the engines, and even in the fuel tanks that run inside the wings, retrieving tools someone forgot. Mostly I cleaned the rivets, so my boss could check for cracks.
'See how this rivet is loose?', he showed me. 'If this one here was loose too, the air could get under the panel, and cause vibration. That would loosen those other two rivets, then we could loose the whole panel. That would make the air flow roughly, and the whole plane could eventually come down'. My job suddenly felt super-important.
The importance of little things are often exaggerated, usually by people trying to persuade me to do something low value.
'Every little bit counts' (usually not for much)
'From little things, big things grow (but usually they don't)
But there is an exception, and its powerful.
When I think about the moment I fall for someone, the moment I decide they are a treasure, it is always a very little thing they did that catches my heart.
- When Stuart left for work the first morning as my housemate. Instead of pulling the door shut, he used the key so he wouldn't wake me.
- When Japanese WWOOFer man painted the stairs, and left the final stroke for me to do.
- When I was on the ferry home from Michelle Bowdens 'Presentation Skills Workshop, and I got a text from her telling me 'You did great'.
Its never been any grand acts of impressiveness that cause me to get devoted to someone. Its always something tiny. But riveting.