Coast to Coast to Coast - Canada 2019

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  • edited February 16
    We're finishing our third straight week of overnight temps well below -30°C, with several dips to -40s. It warmed up to -21°C today and it really did feel quite warm in comparison. We haven't had weather like this since the early 1990s. Apparently it is killing some nasty weevils and beetles which want to kill our forests, so we must thank God at all times and in all ways for all of the weather.

    I see the same hardy young souls walking to their schools and there are a recognizable collection of old man winter cyclists like me who consider weather merely a fact. I have been thinking of founding an organization, perhaps titled something like "Society for the Re-gruntling of those Disgruntled by the Weather". Perhaps the mission statement will contain reference to talking in non-catastrophic terms about neither temperature nor amounts of snow. I'm pleased that the city is clearing multi-use paths along the river and the separated bike lanes reliably.

    I heard talk of "free range seniors" recently. The concept is derived from "free range children" whose parents let them walk to school and explore neighbourhood and other areas without parents helicoptering over head. "Free range seniors" means that walkways are ploughed out, and there aren't huge mounds of snow at crosswalks such that those less steady of foot can ramble about without escort. I thought it worthy of mention.
  • A Feminine ForceA Feminine Force Shipmate
    edited February 16
    Speaking of "Free Range" seniors, I found a bangin' yoga class at the local Y that is populated greatly by seniors who have been doing the class for some years now.

    I have to say, seeing eighty year olds sitting cross legged on the floor, doing downward facing dog and supta virasana with better range of motion in their joints than some of the adolescents (anybody under forty) who are there, is a truly inspiring sight.

    All winter, the focus is on the balancing asanas - tree, eagle and whatnot. Watching these eighty year olds stand on one foot after class, and lift the other one up to zip up their boots is just, well, the best thing.

    Nothing like having good balance and reflexes in the snow and ice conditions. Falling is no longer with only minor consequences.

    AFF

  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    ... "free range children" whose parents let them walk to school ...
    Or "children" as they were known in my day ... :mrgreen:
  • Good one Piglet!
    AFF - 'bangin' yoga class", also very good.
    This was featured in December: older adult powerlifter.
  • I've never been to Carnaval, but did go to a wedding at the Ice Hotel just outside Quebec City in February a few years ago. I aroused the interest of the photographers on account of my kilt, which I was wearing while sitting on an ice bench in the ice chapel for the ceremony. They covered the benches with deer skins, which was a quick lesson in how the deer keep warm in the winter. I had rather cool feet, but everywhere else was fine.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    ... I had rather cool feet, but everywhere else was fine.
    Too much information! (where's that "eek" smilie when I need it?). :mrgreen:

  • Piglet wrote: »
    ... I had rather cool feet, but everywhere else was fine.
    Too much information! (where's that "eek" smilie when I need it?). :mrgreen:
    That was about deer skins, Piglet. What a shockin' mind you have!

  • Piglet wrote: »
    ... I had rather cool feet, but everywhere else was fine.
    Too much information! (where's that "eek" smilie when I need it?). :mrgreen:

    A scientific acquaintance of mine, a member of a militia regiment in his idle hours, had to stand guard in Highland dress a few winters ago. The table enquired how he had managed it, and told us that his sergeant recommended pantihose-- apparently good brands manufacture sizes which are useful for men as they are much purchased by linesmen and other outdoor workers, as well as by those gentlemen who do not always dress as such. He said that they are good value compared to merino wool tights, and the sheers can be worn under a kilt. He notes that the garment is not practical for Canadian military life, given that six months of the year, the motherland resembles Siberia, and for the other six months, the mosquito-infested swamps of the Amazon.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I'm reminded of a conversation with a gentleman in a kilt in Orkney, who observed that while he didn't know where the wind was coming from, he was absolutely sure about where it was going. :mrgreen:
  • A friendly kilt-clad fellow on a very blustery day in the same boat on Western Brook Pond in Gros Morne National Park (a cut off fiord on the west coast of Newfoundland) mentioned something about airplanes and their retractable landing gear some years ago. I realized what he meant some hours later.
  • Oh man ... too much information ...

    AFF
  • We can't post pictures here, so I'll just have to quote this item that the New Yorker picked up some years ago (just received from a friend in England):

    Headline in the Peterborough (Ontario) Examiner
    Canada's first
    round-wheel drive cars
    roll off St Thomas
    assembly line.

    I still don't know what it was about, but I'm sure the Canadian tyre manufacturing industry has never been the same since then.
  • We can't post pictures here, so I'll just have to quote this item that the New Yorker picked up some years ago (just received from a friend in England):

    Headline in the Peterborough (Ontario) Examiner
    Canada's first
    round-wheel drive cars
    roll off St Thomas
    assembly line.

    I still don't know what it was about, but I'm sure the Canadian tyre manufacturing industry has never been the same since then.

    Yes. Certainly a smoother ride than those stupid triangular wheels.

    AFF
  • It's that time of year again... They are telling us that the ice jams upstream are ready to burst. Last time that happened, we had the Grand River in our house briefly and the car was written off. The car gets moved out of the way now, but we haven't been able to move the house. I asked a person at the Grand River Conservation Authority yesterday if they had considered artificial (= explosive) means of breaking the jam, as they do in other places, but no, they can't do that for fear of liability claims. Better to let nature take its course and call it an Act of God, who I have noticed, doesn't carry liability insurance.
  • MarsupialMarsupial Shipmate
    Went for a walk along the Toronto waterfront this afternoon. Theoretically it's warmer, but the wind off the lake doesn't make it feel that way.
  • Marsupial wrote: »
    Went for a walk along the Toronto waterfront this afternoon. Theoretically it's warmer, but the wind off the lake doesn't make it feel that way.

    OMG that wind was a gale today.

    Still too early for lakeshore strolls for me, but the ice has moved out of Burlington Bay and soon we'll have some beach back.

    AFF
  • MarsupialMarsupial Shipmate
    I started off in more sheltered climes, and was a but surprised at how cold it got by the time I hit Exhibition Place. A good walk though -- I wandered through Liberty Village (stopping for coffee at the local Balzac's) and got a chance to explore a bit. Not sure when the last time was that I was in that part of the world but it has definitely changed...
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Although it's still pretty frigid here (it was -22° this morning, and has now reached the giddy heights of -10°), the forecast up until next weekend is for above-freezing temperatures, and even into double digits. Whether it'll be a sudden enough change to cause similar flooding to what we had last year, I've no idea; apparently last year part of the problem was how they went about releasing ice-melt water over the dam upriver from Fredericton. Also, I'd imagine there's a lot more snow to melt this year than there was last, so that'll probably have to be factored in as well.
  • A Feminine ForceA Feminine Force Shipmate
    edited March 17
    It's spring in Canada.

    Today at the mall, Canadians doffed their traditional mourning of winter black Canada Goose down coats and opted for the bright harbingers of spring: dark grey, heather grey, athletic grey, slate grey, blue gray, charcoal grey, navy blue, fatigue green and greige.

    Women everywhere were exposing their ankles to the balmy temperatures and showing off their ankle booties (not to be confused with their booty booties which will make an appearance round about July 1st for three days only, don't blink or you'll miss it.)

    For St Patrick's Day the local Sikh population donned headgear of varying hues of green. If there were any indigenous or ancestral Irish out and about (that's pronounced "oot and aboot" just for you Americans), they were all down the pub and not at the mall.

    I'd say kiss me I'm Irish except fml I'm Scottish is probably more how I feel. Happy Saints Day to the farthest flung.

    AFF





  • Lily PadLily Pad Shipmate
    We celebrated by going to a pancake breakfast and were served by a MLA who is the leader of the Green Party. I was the only one of the three of us who remembered to wear green today!
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Despite having no Irish ancestry whatsoever, I'm wearing a green shirt today - after all, I did live in Ireland for 15 years.

    I did put a St. Patrick's flag on my Facebook page though.
  • What is it about Canadians and colour? The most colouful thing about them is the flag.

    Their homes are the colour of loam.

    Their wardrobes are the varying hues of rock, soil, ice and tundra.

    It's like the entire effing population is in a permanent state of mourning and/or camouflage.

    I have been abroad for too long.

    AFF

  • PigwidgeonPigwidgeon Shipmate
    What is it about Canadians and colour? The most colourful thing about them is the flag.

    Your Prime Minister makes up for it all with his sock collection.
    :smile:
  • Pigwidgeon wrote: »
    What is it about Canadians and colour? The most colourful thing about them is the flag.

    Your Prime Minister makes up for it all with his sock collection.
    :smile:

    I confess I have paid him no attention at all, least of all his socks.

    But now I'll be looking for ankle shots, you can be certain.

    AFF

  • What is it about Canadians and colour? The most colouful thing about them is the flag.

    Their homes are the colour of loam.

    Their wardrobes are the varying hues of rock, soil, ice and tundra.

    It's like the entire effing population is in a permanent state of mourning and/or camouflage.

    I have been abroad for too long.

    AFF

    Do you live in Ontario? The drabness was one of the first things we noticed after Montreal. I think the French influence makes that place more colourful, literally and figuratively. It applies to everything from clothes to politics (in my personal, biased, narrow-minded opinion).
  • What is it about Canadians and colour? The most colouful thing about them is the flag.

    Their homes are the colour of loam.

    Their wardrobes are the varying hues of rock, soil, ice and tundra.

    It's like the entire effing population is in a permanent state of mourning and/or camouflage.

    I have been abroad for too long.

    AFF

    Do you live in Ontario? The drabness was one of the first things we noticed after Montreal. I think the French influence makes that place more colourful, literally and figuratively. It applies to everything from clothes to politics (in my personal, biased, narrow-minded opinion).

    Ah. That must be the problem there.

    I love Quebec because the French believe life without art and artisans is not worth living. If you fabricate wonderful things by hand you will make a living in Quebec.

    Ontarians worship at the altar of politics and finance - not traditionally known for their lively energy or colorful flair.

    Last summer I was wearing one of my sparkle-plenty riot-of-color caftan tops I bought in southern Spain.

    Since claiming my inheritance, I can now afford things like furniture. I went into one of those tony interior tchotchke stores and there was not a color to be seen. The wealthy bankers wives and their sycophant shop attendants looked at me as if I really was a new species of bug.

    It was like I had committed some kind of color crime at high noon.

    Hilarious.

    AFF



  • PigwidgeonPigwidgeon Shipmate
    Since claiming my inheritance, I can now afford things like furniture. I went into one of those tony interior tchotchke stores and there was not a color to be seen...
    I doubt that it is just Ontario or even Canada. I live in the colorful southwestern U.S. For a number of years now, interior decorating is a choice of beige or grey, solid colors -- furniture, carpet, flooring. Remember when kitchen and bathroom fittings came in colors? Not anymore. I have some decorating I want to do in my home, but there is nothing available in a color or pattern. I assume this is all over North America.
  • Lily PadLily Pad Shipmate
    I must assume you have not visited our way? Hot pink, royal blue, yellow mustard, and lime green are all appropriate house colours. People are known by their brightly coloured coats and hats. If you see someone walking and think you know them but their parka is orange and not blue, you just assume that it can't be them. Many carry over their love for bright colours to their cars. I've never seen so many bright green, orange, and red cars! Come on down. We still have some snow and it is not yet warm enough for mosquitoes.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    What is it about Canadians and colour? The most colouful thing about them is the flag.

    Their homes are the colour of loam ...
    Not all of them ... :smiley:

    We used to live in a jelly-bean house in St. John's, which was often photographed by tourists.
  • Piglet wrote: »
    What is it about Canadians and colour? The most colouful thing about them is the flag.

    Their homes are the colour of loam ...
    Not all of them ... :smiley:

    We used to live in a jelly-bean house in St. John's, which was often photographed by tourists.

    Ah yes ... Newfoundland. Is this one of the reasons why the rest of Canadians make so many jokes?

    Like colour = crazy.

    It's real.

    If you aren't wearing a sari in summer you are not excused for affronting other people with your personal palette.

    I believe at least the English speaking Canadians have no idea of what constitutes good taste and so they err of the side of dull-to-dead for fear of appearing tasteless.

    What they end up with are interiors and exteriors so monotonously greige that their taste seems to be informed by Mariott Courtyard and Hilton Garden Suites.

    Maybe I'm just depressed after trading sunny southern Spain for Lake Ontario and grieving my daughter and parents. But I just feel like I have been incarcerated in a sea of blah.

    Here's hoping spring blooms will liven the lansdscape soon.

    AFF
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    If spring doesn't, then autumn certainly will.

    I can't speak for Ontario (apart from an absolutely baltic stopover in Ottawa one February, I've only ever been there in the summer), but the autumn colours here in New Brunswick are absolutely gorgeous.
  • Lily Pad wrote: »
    I must assume you have not visited our way? Hot pink, royal blue, yellow mustard, and lime green are all appropriate house colours. People are known by their brightly coloured coats and hats. If you see someone walking and think you know them but their parka is orange and not blue, you just assume that it can't be them. Many carry over their love for bright colours to their cars. I've never seen so many bright green, orange, and red cars! Come on down. We still have some snow and it is not yet warm enough for mosquitoes.

    In my part of eastern Ontario, with a sizeable francophone minority, we have long marvelled at the pastel paint of many houses in the countryside. Driving back through Embrun and Saint Isidore-de-Prescott a month ago, I was almost driven off the road by the vision of a chrome yellow bungalow, followed by ochre, cerise, and turquoise houses. Enquiring of a real estate friend, she noted that it was likely that those colours were on sale that week and people were just being practical.

    Still speaking of real estate, I was given a lecture on the soothing varied tones of white so fashionable these days, and caused some distress with a monologue on how in Georgian and Victorian days, dining rooms were normally painted red to show hospitality.

    I saw my first jogger in shorts this morning, and my first bare midriff while passing through the university today on my way to the dentist (-4°C).
  • A Feminine ForceA Feminine Force Shipmate
    edited March 19

    In my part of eastern Ontario, with a sizeable francophone minority, we have long marvelled at the pastel paint of many houses in the countryside. Driving back through Embrun and Saint Isidore-de-Prescott a month ago, I was almost driven off the road by the vision of a chrome yellow bungalow, followed by ochre, cerise, and turquoise houses. Enquiring of a real estate friend, she noted that it was likely that those colours were on sale that week and people were just being practical.

    Still speaking of real estate, I was given a lecture on the soothing varied tones of white so fashionable these days, and caused some distress with a monologue on how in Georgian and Victorian days, dining rooms were normally painted red to show hospitality.

    I saw my first jogger in shorts this morning, and my first bare midriff while passing through the university today on my way to the dentist (-4°C).

    Which sounds perfectly reasonable until you realize how people buy paint, and it's always an untinted base and the individual chooses the colour from a paint chip.

    It sounds like your real estate friend is trying to rationalize what seems to her to be an irrational behaviour - painting one's house in a colour.

    And hurrah for the monologue on colour giving someone indigestion! You can have taste, colour, and soothing. They have actually done research on which colors increase appetite and create the best backdrop for food and that colour is, you guessed it, red.

    My friend owns a restaurant and pub and the food is great, I mean really really good, but they struggle with raising prices and I would swear it's because the dining room is hunter green. Although the green is traditional for a British public house, it doesn't make people feel warm and cared for and it's not the best backdrop for the food.

    I personally love cars in jellybean colours. I don't own one, I have always driven used cars and so colour has always been the last thing on my list. But one of my Hondas was that seafoam blue/greeen made popular by BMW in the mid 90s in their Z3. I loved that car.

    AFF



  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    ... it was likely that those colours were on sale that week and people were just being practical ...
    We bought our house in St. John's despite its being "battleship grey" - apparently it wasn't unknown for people to commandeer steal paint from the military base nearby.

    We decided that it really should be a better colour, and had it painted bright red. Sadly it faded after a year or two (a neighbour described it as not so much red as "f***ing pink"). A couple of years later, we had the sidings replaced, and properly stained with a lovely pillarbox red; along with the purple and dark green ones on either side, it made a nice jelly-bean row!
  • A Feminine ForceA Feminine Force Shipmate
    edited March 19
    Piglet wrote: »
    ... it was likely that those colours were on sale that week and people were just being practical ...
    We bought our house in St. John's despite its being "battleship grey" - apparently it wasn't unknown for people to commandeer steal paint from the military base nearby.

    We decided that it really should be a better colour, and had it painted bright red. Sadly it faded after a year or two (a neighbour described it as not so much red as "f***ing pink"). A couple of years later, we had the sidings replaced, and properly stained with a lovely pillarbox red; along with the purple and dark green ones on either side, it made a nice jelly-bean row!

    I think that sounds completely charming. I remember when all the front steps in Ontario were gunship grey. That's the only time I can remember when people bought cheap paint premixed in a colour.

    I would love it if my neighbours called my house effing pink. That should be a paint colour. I can see it in Home Depot. Effing Pink. Doggydoo Brown. Diarrhea Yellow. Gang Green. But I rent and so do not have the option.

    Right now the walls are cafe latte brown and the floor tiles are like lichen growing on a granite outcropping of the Canadian Shield. The hardwood is espresso. The exterior has been tastefully faced with limestone quarried from the Niagara escarpment.

    I hate it but it's middle class, something that has been above my pay grade for over fifteen years so I try not to be too ungrateful. I have compensated a little by hanging the persian carpets I salvaged from the wreckage of my previous middle classdom, instead of laying them flat.

    But I still hunger for the corals and yellows and blues and oranges ...

    I will say though, in southern Ontario you get that green in the late spring early summer that you cannot see anywhere in the semi-desert climes of southern Spain. All their greens are greyish and washed out, even the plantain poplars aren't quite on that hue of late spring sun through young hard maple leaves and ripening winter wheat.

    I never realized how much I missed the greens until I moved back last summer. That, in part, I think saved my life. In the theatre they call it the Green Room, that room you sit quietly in before going onstage, because it was originally painted green to soothe.

    AFF

  • You can get into serious arguments about what constitutes 'battleship grey', as we did when I used to be involved in building stuff for ships. If you look at a grey Canadian naval ship beside an American one, it appears to be a nasty shade of green that would sink in the average harbour without being noticed. Our mailbox is painted a vivid red to a US navy spec. A nice thing about government work is that if the paint is one day past its official expiry date it can't be used, so the paint shop foreman was glad to be saved the trouble of getting rid of it. It is of exceeding high quality and will probably last forever.
  • You can get into serious arguments about what constitutes 'battleship grey', as we did when I used to be involved in building stuff for ships. If you look at a grey Canadian naval ship beside an American one, it appears to be a nasty shade of green that would sink in the average harbour without being noticed. Our mailbox is painted a vivid red to a US navy spec. A nice thing about government work is that if the paint is one day past its official expiry date it can't be used, so the paint shop foreman was glad to be saved the trouble of getting rid of it. It is of exceeding high quality and will probably last forever.

    A grey Canadian naval ship is appropriate reference, since we only have one.

    AFF
  • edited March 20
    We must not be so harsh! Four submarines and a dozen frigates, as well as a posse (28) of other assorted vessels. Admittedly, we really didn't need to keep up our 400-strong WWII fleet (I was told that the RCN was the fourth-largest navy in the world in 1945-- update-- Wikipedia says third-largest with 950 ships).

    A naval friend of mine, stationed in Afghanistan (I never asked), named her cubicle HMCS Dromedary and continued this cubicle-christening over other assignments, to which we owe the existence of the HMCS Armadillo, HMCS Vampire, and HMCS Bast (after her current cat). I do not think that she was allowed to choose the colour of paint of her cubicle, but I did not ask about this either.
  • A Feminine ForceA Feminine Force Shipmate
    edited March 20
    We must not be so harsh! Four submarines and a dozen frigates, as well as a posse (28) of other assorted vessels. Admittedly, we really didn't need to keep up our 400-strong WWII fleet (I was told that the RCN was the fourth-largest navy in the world in 1945-- update-- Wikipedia says third-largest with 950 ships).

    I often wonder what were we thinking? We have more coastline than any other country on the planet and we claim territory into the Arctic, all of which we couldn't possibly hope to patrol effectively during the Cold War without a navy.

    Oh yeah. We had the AVRO Arrow.

    But ... that's a topic for other forums.

    AFF

  • We must not be so harsh! Four submarines and a dozen frigates, as well as a posse (28) of other assorted vessels. Admittedly, we really didn't need to keep up our 400-strong WWII fleet (I was told that the RCN was the fourth-largest navy in the world in 1945-- update-- Wikipedia says third-largest with 950 ships).

    I often wonder what were we thinking? We have more coastline than any other country on the planet and we claim territory into the Arctic, all of which we couldn't possibly hope to patrol effectively during the Cold War without a navy.

    Oh yeah. We had the AVRO Arrow.

    But ... that's a topic for other forums.

    AFF

    Under the late crystal-ball aficionado (and Presbyterian) Mackenzie King and likely reflecting the majority view of Canadians at the time, there was a desire to demobilize and get out of the military business (and the costs attending) ASAP. We even turned down the offer of an occupation zone in Germany. As this was in the few years before the Cold War began, there was no imaginable enemy and it was believed that between fisheries patrol and NATO obligations, we needed many fewer vessels.

    But peace dividends rarely last very long. As well, we need to remember the uncomfortable truth that Canadians really would rather not pay for a substantial defence. ooops. this is getting purgatorial.

    We still have one sailing ship left, HMCS Oriole!
  • A Feminine ForceA Feminine Force Shipmate
    edited March 20
    Ah yes the trusty Oriole! Such a friendly little battle cruiser. Greeting intruders on our Arctic territory with a friendly wave "Hello, Bonjour! You may not realize it but you are now in Canadian waters! Just a reminder to leave your guns over there. Bon Voyage and Have a Nice Day!"

    I love us. We are so amazing. Amazing like our little Maple Leaf.

    I am currently looking at investing in a small enterprise owned by a first generation Canadian of Vietnamese origin, who is selling organic fertilizer made in Canada to countries in the far east. The Canadian origin and strict certification requirements give him a competitive edge.

    The Maple Leaf on the bottle is a brand that is universally recognized over there as a symbol of decency and trustworthiness.

    I'm actually really proud of the fact that only Russia is bigger than we are, and we are as underequipped as we are to defend ourselves. We just absorb people into our vastness and they are engulfed in the majesty of nature. She takes care of the rest.

    AFF



  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I hope they'll want to absorb us into their vastness when we apply for citizenship ... :smile:
  • We'll just annex Siberia to Manitoba and nobody will notice either way, aside from the French-language signs at Yakutsk airport.
  • My sojourn in the sunny south ends this weekend. I trust winter is over in Ottawa?
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I can't speak for Ottawa, but it's beginning to look decidedly springy in Fredericton - all but the most stubborn, shaded snow has gone, and we're now into the rainy season.

    Hope Ottawa isn't too much of a shock for you!
  • CaissaCaissa Shipmate
    Alberta, once again, gets the government that is deserves.
  • PigwidgeonPigwidgeon Shipmate
    My sojourn in the sunny south ends this weekend. I trust winter is over in Ottawa?

    Sorry we didn't get to have a Shipmeet this year. Safe travels.
  • Caissa wrote: »
    Alberta, once again, gets the government that is deserves.
    It was inevitable. It won't make any difference in an economy that has ridden one horse for more than half a century. It makes the colour discussion on this thread much more interesting.

    I've heard, though not seen the research, that when people from around the world are asked their favourite colours, it usually comes out red and blue or blue and red as choices 1 and 2. It is only in Canada that beige and the various shades of white (who knew about varieties of white?!) enter the top 10 at all. I find the discussion of the PM's soxes equally pathetical in the Anne of Green Gables's sense of the word. (Which leads me to ask if I should write and say Anne's of Green Gables or something else)
  • Lily PadLily Pad Shipmate
    "Equally pathetical in the Anne of Green Gables's sense of the word."? Care to explain?

    The ice has now gone out here in Anne's Land and the dog is pretty much dirty and/or wet most of the time. We too have an election coming up on Tuesday and are curious to see what will happen with the referendum on Proportional Representation.
  • ...
    I've heard, though not seen the research, that when people from around the world are asked their favourite colours, it usually comes out red and blue or blue and red as choices 1 and 2. It is only in Canada that beige and the various shades of white (who knew about varieties of white?!) enter the top 10 at all.

    Somehow it comes as no surprise that in the land whose northernmost indigenous people have 100(or more?) words for snow, there should be 100 shades of white.

    AFF



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