The Year That Was 2019

IMG_0007We have breezed through the year with so much happening all over the World and I thought I’ll put to word a few that caught my eye and touched my heart.

A Swedish kid – Greta Thunberg – leading the Climate Change Movement, on her own oxygen, changed the climate on Time Magazine’s Cover, riding a cool yacht across the Atlantic and reaching the shore of the Magazine’s Person Of The Year honor. Meanwhile, in the United Kingdom, a tropical plant produced male and female cones outdoors for the first time in 60 million years, in an event Botanists say is a clear indication of Climate Change in the wind of Greta’s sails. Many more seas to cross, and travel is looming in the year ahead. Read somewhere that the last four years have been the hottest years on Planet Earth, since record-keeping began. That kid will grow-up on us.

A Japanese Woman, Naomi Osaka, won the Australian Open Tennis Women’s Singles Title, for the first ever time raising her game like the rising sun. I guess she saw the tennis balls shining like the sun and was clever enough to use it to blind her opponent for a courageous win.

American NASA’s New Horizon, seeking new horizons, flew past Ultima Thule, which at 6.5 billion km away is the most distant ever exploration of an object in our Solar System. The radio message takes 6 hours 8 minutes to traverse the great expanse of space between here and there. While the message travelled, India’s ISRO launched its ambitious Chandrayaan-2 Mission to the Moon, hoping to land Vikram, the Moon Lander, on the surface and roll out the red carpet for Pragyan, tucked inside its womb, to rove the Moon. However Vikram caught a cold, just 2.1 km above the surface, sneezed too violently, and crash landed on the Moon. So near, yet so far. Failure is at best a hard-landing lesson: we are already thinking about Chandrayaan-3 and an Indian on the Moon; the spirits of Neil Armstrong willing, along with a fiercely competitive and hardworking ISRO. It’s been fifty years since Man first landed on the Moon and we are still fascinated by its invisible honey.

Man keeps expanding the boundaries of the known Universe; almost every other month we come across a new discovery of further unkind emptiness in Space and sizzling kinds of life forms in the deep oceans and forests on Earth – why sometimes in our own backyard! January also saw the death of George, the only living Tree Snail of its kind: ‘He is survived by none’, read its Obituary. In July, Scientists were shocked to find that a young female Arctic Fox had travelled over 3500 km from Norway to Canada in just 76 days, and amazingly covered 155 km in just one day, when it crossed the Greenland Ice Sheet. Wow, that’s a real Fox act.

India strikes terror across the Border in Pakistan, in an unbelievable macho moustache strike on terrorists and Prime Minister Narendra Modi romps home to Election victory in a magnificent win. He followed through by making his buddy the Home Minister, and the combo delivered political fireworks, from bringing Jammu & Kashmir into mainstream India by abrogation of a toothless Article; and amending India’s Citizenship Act making it easier for religiously persecuted minorities from the neighboring theocratic States to become citizens of India, inside 5years – without source documents, rather than the norm of 11 years – with documents, provided they entered India before 31 December 2015. In the meantime, people who previously could no understand basic traffic rules, or read to understand, woke-up and read exactly what the Amendment did not say. Fear, and the wrong way to an unreachable place, is the catalyst for not getting things done and making unholy noises.

In Paris, The Notre Dame Cathedral lighted up its past History, probably wanting a fresh make-over; Japan’s Emperor abdicated the Crysanthemum Throne, in a first of its kind in Japan – the oldest hereditary monarchy, in favor of his son who became the 126th Emperor. Banzai (10,000 years) – Should be achievable with the Harvard-educated Empress to help him!

Australia’s Scott Morrison won in a freak Election – period Australia. When it gets too hot in Australia the nectar in certain flowers ferments and turn into alcohol. The Bees that get drunk on the nectar aren’t allowed back into the hive until they sober up (else they might mess with the Queen?). Maybe Scott and his party stayed sober enough for the Queen to approve.

Donald Trump towers to be the only the third US President ever to be impeached after being the first US President to step into the hermit Kingdom of North Korea. One, Two, Three… is a series for winners and losers. Never mind, if Obama caught Bin Laden, Trump hunted down Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi of the ISIS using the best of dog-power he could find. About that time NASA Astronauts performed the first ever All Women Space Walk – cat walking about the International Space Station in their beautiful space suits – without make up. In yonder Britain, Boris Johnson’s carefully ruffled hair may finally ‘Get Brexit Done’. He won on that simple slogan.

French Inventor Franky Zapata crossed the English Channel on a jet-powered fly-board, on a second attempt, while Spiderman was spinning his new web in yet another Far From Home movie.

India’s PV Sindhu won the World Championship Badminton Gold, in one of many firsts, for women in India. Not to be left behind, Boxer Mary Kom continued to defy age and marriage, winning medals more than Gold, while athlete Hima Das become a track superstar. Off the track, Wing Commander Anjali Singh become the first woman to be appointed as Military Diplomat in Indian Missions, abroad. Indian Women are a hard-working progressive lot, for sure. Beauty, Brains and physicals – it’s playing in India to full House; only, the men need to find their place. Beware, the Kung Fu Nuns from the Himalayas and Ladak region are changing the game by up-skilling women in the art of self defense.

Respected, all-round, omnipresent Politicians Arun Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj pass away to the Heavens above: Despite Arun waiving the GST for Sushma’s life; and Sushma, in turn, ensuring special medicines arrive from abroad in double quick time – on a simple tweet request from Arun, they both failed to make it beyond the border of 2019.

Here’s wishing that the year 2020 is at least a little bit better than 2019, in all aspects. Cheers to that!


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