Opinion Events to Shake, or Gently Rattle, the World in 2021

FRANCE, June 26-29: It was supposed to be the year that Denmark’s love of cycling would be on full display, with the opening legs of the Tour de France, known as the Grand Départ, being held in Denmark for the time being first. But due to a scheduling conflict with the European Championship and the Olympics, the Danes will have to wait until 2022. The 2021 Grand Départ will take place in windy Brittany, where Finistère’s point at Brest will host the start of the race for the fourth time its history.

ENGLAND, July 1: On what would have been Princess Diana’s 60th birthday, her sons, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, join in – despite the distance physical (and perhaps symbolic) between London and California – erecting a statue in her honor at Sunken Gardens in Kensington Palace, where they were both brought up.

JAPAN, July 23-Aug. 8 [postponed from July 24-Aug. 9, 2020]: Tokyo will host the first deferred Olympics in recent history, having faced political, economic and logistical challenges that no other host country has faced, including exactly where to store the Olympic torch for a year. The Winter Olympics in Beijing are expected to open on February 4, 2022, less than six months later.

AUSTRALIA, July 30-Aug. 1: The South Queensland dromedaries will boldly step into the spotlight at the biennial Tara Festival of Culture and Camel Races, which will also feature Maori haka dancers, yabby (crayfish) races, freestyle motocross exhibitions and poetry recitation bush. Caravans and campers will descend to the small farming town of Tara, which has a population of about 2,200 but attracts as many as 12,000 visitors for the event.

THE INTERNET, August 17: Microsoft is pulling the plug on its 25-year-old browser, Internet Explorer. Its replacement, Microsoft Edge, will use Chromium, an open source software developed by Google that underpins Google Chrome and many other internet browsers. So Google is expanding its influence over privacy standards across the online universe.

RWANDA, September 3-10: Baby mountain gorillas born in the Rwandan Volcanoes National Park are named by park rangers, guides, wardens, trackers and veterinarians at the annual Kwita Izina ceremony, which means “giving a name” in Kinyarwanda, Rwanda’s national language. The tradition is part of a week-long program of events focusing on gorilla conservation.

FRANCE, September 11: As you sprint through the rolling hills of Bordeaux, you stop for a drink – perhaps Château Lafite Rothschild. You might want to pair it with some regional delicacies, of course – oysters, or a bit of steak – then off you head towards the finish line. At least that’s how it’s done in the 26.2-mile Marathon du Médoc, considered by some of the longest in the world because of the numerous stops associated with eating, drinking or listening to the live music of regional performers.