What we carry with us is what sees us through
It occurs to me only now that perhaps that curious business of our time-reckoning system, as well as many other apparently irrational things we did, were done in part to save our faculties of adaptation for necessities. I still don’t know whether it was inherent weakness or instinctive wisdom. It doesn’t matter, really, and I see I’m digressing again. I am getting older. But I can still remember being very scornful of the same sentimental clinging to a calendar, when I was a child on Pluto — and here they’d had more excuse. Pluto doesn’t rotate at all; it has no natural day. And its year is hundreds of Earth-years long. So for a system of time-reckoning that applied to human values, the old one was as good as any other there, except in terms of arithmetical efficiency.
Here it was another matter altogether: we forced an old system to fit new circumstance; why? Because we were human, and each of us had grown up somewhere. Because we had been children back there, and some part of each of us was still a child there, and needed a safe familiar handle of some sort to cling to. In space, we were completely set apart from ‘home’. Time was our handle.
Daughters of Earth
And so for day 1640