Whatever your belief about how we came to live on this planet, we're fortunate to be able to call Earth home. Here are 5 cool facts that you may not have known about our home:
1. Hang on! We're cruising around the Sun at the breakneck speed of about 67,000 miles per hour.
2. Even at that speed, it takes us 365 days to go around the big fiery ball since it is 93 million miles away. Fortunately, that's just the right distance--the Goldilocks habitable zone--any closer, and we burn up; any further, and we freeze. Whew!
3. In addition, depending on where you're currently standing on the planet, you could be spinning at up to 1,000 mph (at the equator; standing still at the poles). Good luck holding on to a merry-go-round at that speed.
4. We just moved in. The Earth is about 4.54 billion years old, but our ancestors only unpacked their boxes about 200,000 years ago, and they only started hanging out in a civilization about 6,000 years ago.
5. Scientist believe there may be 40 billion other habitable planets in the Universe. Don't start making travel plans, however; the nearest, Kapteyn-b, is 12.8 light years away--that's over 76 trillion miles away! And who knows whether the inhabitants already there would appreciate us dropping in? Better phone ahead.
In the meantime, let's enjoy and care for this big blue ball hurtling us through the void of space.