Normally at this stage of an England cricket tour, I would be writing a piece about how desperately boring it is that a thrilling series of Test matches should be followed by one unmemorable one-day match after another, but some good may yet come from the two Twenty20 matches and seven 50-over games.
England's players have agreed to donate part of their match fees from this morning's match to the Queensland flood relief and after the game players from both sides went into the crowd to press the flesh and pass the donations bucket. With 40,000 spectators, it is hoped that a fair bit was raised.
Charity is to continue. Kevin Pietersen has said he will auction his Ashes shirt and bat for the flood relief effort, while Shane Warne and Darren Gough are arranging a match between "legends" to raise more money. New South Wales cricket team has agreed to donate the gate receipts from their match with Queensland the day before England play Australia in Brisbane on January 29.
It is easy to forget that natural disasters hurt developed countries just as much as third world countries. People rightly give money when there are floods in Bangladesh or hurricanes in the Caribbean, but the disruption to life and the cost of remedying it in Queensland after these floods - which have covered an area the size of France and Germany - is just as great, probably greater. Those who have a quality of life miss it more when it is taken away.
It is heartwarming that in the aftermath of the Ashes victory and a few days after the multimillion-dollar auction for the Indian Premier League, cricketers and cricket fans can dig deep to help our fellow humans in need.
A UN-style partition plan for 'red' and 'blue' America
29 minutes ago