Ugh, so there's this:
The hottest day on record set the State of Victoria ablaze. The fires are already officially Australia's worst natural disaster and it's not over yet. Whole towns have been destroyed and so many people are still missing. It looks like a nightmare situation. I wish there was something I could do to help but there's not much I can do from this distance apart from donating to the Red Cross Victorian bushfires appeal. (Fans of Australian wine may find themselves affected eventually as some Yarra Valley vineyards were incinerated.)
Then, there was some sad family news. I just heard that one of my cousins has passed away suddenly. I last saw her in November when she seemed to be in totally normal health. Apparently, she went to her doctor complaining of a sore back but ended up with a diagnosis of late-stage cancer throughout her body and a few days later she was gone. It's obviously pretty shocking for the family - she was 44. Only days away from death and her only symptom was a backache? It's crazy enough to turn anyone into a hypochondriac. Tragedy was already a theme in this cousin's life: years ago, her husband was killed in a car accident on their honeymoon. Sad, sad, sad.
Also this weekend, I heard via Facebook that a lovely Aussie blogger friend who I was lucky enough to meet in November has had a sudden, serious health scare. I'm thinking of her lots and hoping that she'll be genki again soon.