On Sunday, the global death toll from Covid-19 passed one million.
Recorded infections worldwide are not far off 35 million.
The US has the highest death toll with more than 200,000 fatalities followed by Brazil, India, Mexico and Britain.
In Brazil, even next year’s Rio de Janeiro carnival, the biggest in the world, has already been called off.
Europe, hit hard by the first wave, is now facing another surge in cases, with Paris, London and Madrid all forced to introduce controls in a desperate effort to slow case numbers threatening to overload hospitals.
Governments are adding and subtracting countries to their quarantine lists on a daily basis as their infection tallies see-saw wildly.
In the UK, students are trapped in their halls of residence and told not to go home to their families as numbers soar in their universities.
In every country, many people refuse to obey new laws restricting their lives even as their neighbours succumb to the disease.
Scientists in pharmaceutical organisations all across the world are scrambling to develop a working vaccine and test it accurately but quickly.
Governments are again and again forced into an uneasy balancing act: trying to slow the virus through strict controls on their citizens, while trying not to inflict fatal damage on businesses already staggering under the weight of constantly changing restrictions.
The phrase everyone is getting used to hearing is “second wave”. Many people are wondering when we shall begin to hear “third wave” and so on.
“One million is a terrible number and we need to reflect on that before we start considering a second million,” the WHO’s emergencies director Michael Ryan told reporters on Friday.
How it will turn out is anybody’s guess, as government scientific advisers are proven wrong again and again.
What is for sure is that 2020 will be remembered as a very special year.
Let’s hope 2021 doesn’t turn out to be even more special.