Friday, 21 December 2012

The world didn't end

In Ukraine, people are reportedly stockpiling food, bottled water, batteries, candles and matches in case the advertised end of the world manifests itself today. The so-called end of the Mayan Long Calendar (which somehow didn't coincide with the end of Buddhist, Muslim, Hindi, Christian or Jewish calendars) will come and go, and another eschatological date will slip into forgottenness.(Remember 2000?) Worth looking back at some other dates on which the world was to have ended, as well as some future ones...

Truly world-ending phenomena would signal their impending arrival; a solar flare that could knock out all electrical function around the globe, a supervolcano such as the Yellowstone Caldera or an asteroid heading our way would have given notice of themselves by now.

In any case, I'm of the opinion that bad things happen when they're not expected. The Indian Ocean Tsunami of  2004, which killed 230,000 people, was one of those events. It had not been foreseen by any religion or cult or fortune teller. Nor was 1 September 1939 mentioned in the Scriptures. And similarly on the personal scale, bad things strike one out of the blue.

Today is the year's Darkest Day, with the sun rising in Warsaw at 07:43 and setting at 15:25, giving us seven hours and 52 minutes of daylight, 16 hours and eight minutes of darkness. By Christmas Day, it will once again be evident that the day is indeed getting longer once again; the darkness will be retreating (well, in the Northern Hemisphere at least!) as it always has done, something for which we should all show gratitude.

[Revisiting this post six years on, December 2018, I can see it in a different light... 2012 was probably the best year of my life. Everything was going so well. Ukraine and Russia were at peace. Trump was a marginal joke figure. The word 'Brexit' was only being used by political scientists. Though I watched none of the Euro2012 football championships, the atmosphere around the games (with the exception of those involving Russia) was hospitable. Since the end of 2012, things have gone sour. Not in any apocalyptic sense, but Putin's militaristic adventures, Brexit and Trump are not good things. So maybe there was something in the 2012 phenomenon after all...]

This time last year:
First snow - but proper snow?

The time two years ago:
Dense, wet, rush hour snow

This time three years ago:
Evening photography, Powiśle

This time four years ago:
The shortest day of the year

This time five years ago:
Bye bye borders - Poland joins Schengen


Anonymous said...

Ewa and I discussed this in the morning. Are you sure the world did not end and the 'reality' we are experiencing right now is not a post Armageddon flash of out of body experience?


Michael Dembinski said...

Yes, but why today? :)

It could equally have happened on 1 January 2000!

Anonymous said...

happy to start the long journey out of the tunnel.

Marcin said...

The world'd end, if you stop bloggin'. LOL :)

Best wishes for the New Year.