Expect the next few months, the next few years, the next few decades to be - tumultuous.
The fires that ravaged a migrant camp on the Greek island of Lesbos are a harbinger of a tsunami of migration in the years ahead as vast swathes of the world are rendered unviable, in some cases uninhabitable.
We don't know how many. Some predictions speak of tens of millions, some hundreds of millions. One I ran across yesterday predicted 1.2 billion people leaving their homelands by 2050. In essence, no one really knows because no one knows what the future holds.
20 years ago many would have laughed derisively at the suggestion that the Pacific rainforest could be swept by wildfires. It's right in the name - "rain"forest. I was flummoxed two years ago when wildfire spread through Washington State's Olympic peninsula. How could that be? That's how it is today.
In barely a month the EU and the UK will run onto the shoals of Brexit. Boris Johnson, whose Tory government is already reneging on some aspects of the agreement, says it'll be a good thing. The Irish can't see it. What they can see is a flare up of "the troubles" that plagued the Republic and Northern Ireland for generations. Scotland, meanwhile, watches warily, its finger on the trigger. Boris Johnson is a prime minister of great principle. He has so many he can effortlessly discard them in favour of others.
As the EU and the UK are still convulsing, Americans will select their next president, a new House of Representatives and one-third of the Senate. It should be the ultimate electoral shit show. The Russians are meddling. The Chinese are meddling. So too, we're told, are the Iranians. It's said the Russians want Trump back, the Chinese want Trump gone.
Four years ago people thought Trump would be laid low by the Access Hollywood tapes that had Trump talking about chasing married women and his amazing ability to just walk up to women and "grab them by the pu##y." What a deviant! Trump lost the popular vote but it wasn't enough to stop the Electoral College from appointing him president.
Now there are more audio recordings of Trump admitting that he deliberately misled the American public about the Covid-19 virus. A straight up admission of dereliction of duty. A choice that cost the lives of tens of thousands of Americans and the lasting injury of vastly more. Trump even invited his faithful supporters to flock to crammed airport hangars for rallies where they mingled, shoulder to shoulder, no masks for hours.
53 days until the election. Will it really matter what Trump was caught saying by the time November 3rd rolls around? Will his base care? Will Trump's hunchback Renfeld, Attorney General Bill Barr, ride to the rescue announcing criminal indictments of Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer? If the Trump campaign can't reverse the slide will they resort to other means to disrupt the election? The possibilities seem endless - and nauseating.
In a nation whose people are so angrily divided as America, what will ensue following the election? Will today's white nationalists, heavily-armed neo-nazis who brazenly infest the most peaceful protests, lose their minds if Trump loses his job? Will that be America's 21st century Fort Sumter moment? As a number of pundits are suggesting, is America already too broken to be fixed by a general election?
These are just a few examples of life in this era of revolving emergencies. We seem deficient in the will or the ability to effectively, even rationally, respond to these perils.
Will these emergencies slow down? Will we get some breaks that resemble what we used to consider normal? A chance to recharge our batteries, rebuild? I hope so. I think we all do.