Today is the last day of 2020. To say that this is an unusual year is an understatement. This post is a short reflection of a year many people will talk about for decades to come.

We started 2020 with severe bushfire in Australia. It burned more than 190,000 square kilometres and caused thousands to lose their homes. Later in summer, California had its turn.

Still in the first month of 2020, we heard the first time about novel corona virus epidemic in China. At that time, few people would have imagined how significant it would impact the world for the rest of the year. From the other side of the planet, we also read news about really big locust swarm destroying crops in east Africa.

In February, for the first time in history, a non-English movie won Best Picture in the Academy Awards.

Back to novel corona virus, in March we witnessed the great stock market crash caused by COVID-19 pandemic, followed by the silly toilet paper shortage. As an Australian, it is with great embarrassment I admit that this crazy trend started from here.

From UK, we got Megxit and the actual Brexit. From US, we had Trump’s symbolic impeachment, followed by many other laughable events, and then general election won by President-Elect Biden. Of course Trump would not admit his defeat.

Somewhat related, someone managed to hack into Twitter account of a sitting US President by simply guessing the password: maga2020!

There were a few weeks with scary news on murder hornets, I wonder what happened to them.

Black Lives Matter protests started from the US, then spread around the world, in the middle of pandemic.

Beirut explosion shocked the world in August. Not sure if the death rumours of King Jong Un is a worthy event to be mentioned, but people actually talked about it for a while.

Supreme Court Justice and champion of gender equality Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away in September. The world lost one of our best people.

Back to COVID-19 pandemic, Australia is considered as one of the countries with better policies. We started with closing the border. A bit late in my opinion, but still earlier than many other countries. Then we entered stages of lockdown and successfully flatten the curve before mid-year. But then Victoria, my home state, experienced bad second wave thanks to hotel quarantine scandal. We re-entered lockdown from July, including curfew and limitation of grocery shopping activity. That was even more strict than the ones we did on first wave. Working from home was alright. Working from home while helping our 5yo son who had to do school from home was hard. Cranky 1yo that demands full attention the whole day made it harder.

We survived 111 days of lockdown and came out with zero new cases per day for 2 months. Schools were reopened and we regained our sanity, to some degree.

To be fair, there are some positive aspects. I get to spend more time with family compared to any recent years I could remember. I got to do a number of up-skill trainings that have been on my list for many years. We could not even count how many times we cleaned-and-reorganised the house. Many things in our to-do list got completed. Most noteworthy, I wrote, finished and published a book. All the challenges aside, 2020 has been a productive year for me.

2020 is an unusual year. Will I miss it? No. Definitely no. Will I remember it for the rest of my life? Most probably yes.

2021 will arrive in a few hours. Changing the number years will not make all the problem goes away. The pandemic is still here. We still do not have a proper vaccine. I am a big believer in vaccine, yet I am uncomfortable to accept vaccine with highly questionable rushed testing, safety issues and long terms & conditions. The economic impact of pandemic will linger for years to come. But as long as we are alive and healthy, we can recover stronger, and we will.

Happy New Year 2021