Well, we made it. You and I have traveled yet one more year around the sun. True to form, 2019 was full of wonder, mistakes, successes, and a smorgasbord of conundrums and craziness.
As usual, I kept track of a few of the lesser but still extraordinary events and findings during the year.
January 22 — According to a report from nonprofit Oxfam, the world’s 26 wealthiest people are worth the same amount of money as the world’s poorest 3.8 billion.
January 30 — The temperature dropped to -48 degrees with a wind chill of -65 in Norris Camp, Minnesota, making it the coldest place in the lower 48 states
February 1 — The BBC reported that January was the hottest month on record in Australia and that five days were among the top 10 on record for the warmest.
February 13 — NASA announced that it had declared the Mars rover dead after being unable to communicate with it following a massive dust storm on the red planet.
March 25 — A British Airways flight bound for Dusseldorf, Germany, instead accidentally landed in Edinburgh, Scotland, because the company filed the wrong flight papers.
March 27 — Airbnb, the online home-sharing site, surpassed Hilton Hotels in annual sales.
April 22 — The BBC reported that 23 million people use 123456 as their password for private online accounts, with 123456789 as the second most popular password.
May 22 — The last known ship to bring slaves to the U.S., the schooner Clotilda, was discovered in a remote branch of Alabama’s Mobile River.
May 31 — After 20 rounds and running out of hard words, the National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C., crowned an unprecedented eight co-champions.
June 5 — Tom Rice, 97, of Coronado, California, reenacted his pre-D-Day 1944 jump into Carentan, France, as part of the 75th anniversary of the Allied invasion at Normandy.
June 11 — Kraft announced that it was selling salad frosting, which was French dressing disguised in a colorful bottle to get kids to like it.
July 22 — Officials near Sandpoint, Idaho removed turtle crossing signs because thieves kept stealing them as soon as the unique warning signs were replaced.
August 14 — A 12-year-old boy attending a family reunion found a rare Ice Age wooly mammoth tooth by a creek near the Inn at Honey Run near Millersburg, Ohio.
September 6 — A new international study showed that 90 percent of the time eyewitnesses would assist someone assaulted in public.
September 7 — Miami Marlins pitcher Brian Moran struck out his young brother, Colin, pinch-hitting for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
October 7 — After falling at his home in Plains, Georgia the previous day, former President Jimmy Carter, 95, with a bandage above his left eye and a visible welt below, still helped build a Habitat for Humanity home in Nashville, Tennessee.
October 18 — NASA astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir performed the first all-female spacewalk when they ventured outside the International Space Station for five and a half hours to replace a faulty battery charger.
November 8 — The last survivor of the Hindenburg Disaster, Werner Gustav Doehner, died in Laconia, New Hampshire, at age 90.
November 18 — Police in Goddard, Kansas, discovered a camel, cow, and donkey wandering along a rural road.
December 9 — A New York City man removed and ate a banana from a Miami, Florida art exhibit that had sold for $120,000.
December 10 — A 43-year-old Monroe County, Louisiana, man was arrested for fixing the bingo game he was calling so his relatives could win.
Here’s hoping 2020 will give us both a better year and better eyesight in all that is happening around us.
Happy New Year!