They're calling the bushfires of the last few days in the southeastern Australian state of Victoria "the worst natural disaster in Australian history" - at least, that's in terms of the number of deaths.  The current count shows 181 deaths, but the Victorian police were quoted today saying the final toll may be 300 by the time they're able to re-enter all of the burned-out areas.  This is all within about 80 km of Melbourne, much of it in the wooded hills northeast of the city.

I'm sure the heart-breaking videos have been shown in the US news media.  But if you need a sobering summary, BBC News has posted a three and a half minute slideshow with audio.

In Perth we were back over 35°C (95°F) today and it's supposed to be even warmer through the week.  Perth is on a "high fire alert", but so far their haven't been any large fires here.