Entries Tagged 'Do' ↓


Much too excited at this moment to type…. but as of a few minutes ago, the truest miracle of life happened – I became an aunt for the 14th time!! Just want my family needs…. another girl… LOL…… the tally is now 8 nieces and 6 nephews…. We’re long overdue though since our last was 10 years ago… WHOOO!! A little munchkin for me to play with till I get on the big plane. Happy Early First Father’s Day, Big Bro! :-)

. . don’t burn the day. .

Heavier Things

I was initially motivated to start this blog with the intent of establishing a mode of communication between family and friends for my time living abroad. After writing a few posts, I realized this platform meant more to me than just a means of keeping in touch, but rather providing a great way to document my life’s musings in the form of a memoir (so who cares if one or ten or twenty or 100 people read my daily ramblings.) Since then, my casual approach has offered me an opportunity to make note of whatever I was inspired/motivated by, thought, felt, saw, heard, did in the day and/or wish to inspire, motivate, plan to see, hear, do etc. It has become such a sixth sense for me to keep up with, I oftentimes forget what I have blogged and always get a good shock when a friend references something that has happened to me, and the convo goes a little something like this:

  • Me: “Hey! How did you know that? Have we talked about this before?”
  • Friend: “I read it on your blog.”
  • Me: “Ahhhhh! Score! You’re alright in my book!” :-)

So thankfully, I have enough folks who find my random musings, entertaining enough to keep them coming back for more. (ps. It truly is a great compliment to hear folks are actually interested in what I have to say/am doing. LOL)

But this particular entry has a rather heavier undertone because it has been brought forth by a couple of recent not-so-celebratory events. See, while much of my material are of the happy-ending type because, well, I’m one to always (at least try to) make it a point to look beyond and find the light at the end of the tunnel no matter what situation I find myself in. (And trust, things are not always peachy on my end; I have my down times; I’m only human after all.) Nonetheless, I was recently stopped in my tracks with news of a death in the family of a friend in addition to another friend’s struggle with depression. Two pretty harsh realities if you ask me with the former being the #1 mystery to this thing called “life.”

Two isolated incidents, yet somewhat connected, in that those left to deal with the respective realities share similar distressed, and sometimes, volatile states of mind. You can imagine I was tongue tied upon receiving news of both instances because a) death is never going to be easy to deal with, for what you say/do will not revert the end result and b) cheering up someone who is chronically suffering is not as easy as simply cracking a knock-knock joke.

However, what I was reminded of in both cases is the value of humanity and compassion. While I’m busy-ing around and stressing out over my upcoming move, I reached out to both of my friends. Irregardless of lack in power to change what is done and/or erase suffering, my simple phone call (if I were in the same city, of course I would’ve just showed up in flesh, arms wide open) was genuinely well-received and at that point, it didn’t matter what it was that I had to say, but the fact that I thought and cared enough to reach out, spoke volumes on my behalf.

So, as my friend who is struggling with depression asked me to include a piece in my blog to “let people know if they know someone who is depressed, reach out to them, because we are unable to reach out on our own a lot of the time…” – There ya’ll are! Please keep those words in mind in your own circle of family and friends. Life is unpredictable and not a guarantee, as indicated with the passing of my other friend’s family member. Love, Care, Value those you have in your life, and remember, together,

from the dark side we can see a glow of something bright
. . don’t burn the day . .

On a happy-ending note, reach out and hug someone EVERYDAY as demonstrated in this video.

Pick me up, oh, from the bottom
Up to the top, love, everyday
Pay no mind to taunts or advances
I take my chances on everyday

Left to right
Up and down, love
I push up love, love everyday
Jump in the mud, oh
Get your hands dirty with
Love it up on everyday

All you need is
All you want is
All you need is love.
All you need is
What you want is
All you need is love.

Oh, Everyday…

“Everyday” from album, Everyday by Dave Matthews Band (02.27.01)

. . don’t burn the day. .

Why Your Vote Should NOT Go The McBush Way

Just watch this clip.

I mean REALLY, I AM STILL SHAKING MY HEAD!!! (Thanks Janee for this piece of poliTRICKs!)

. . don’t burn the day . .

Keeping On Track

Just some words I came across to remind me… to stay on course… (right L. Rod?!)

  • You have spent two years dealing with the rigors of Saturn opposed to your Sun, so in effect, you have done all the necessary spadework to now launch your new life. That launch is due any minute.
  • The eclipses are known to enact a series of tests under the surface of things. If an eclipse deems an endeavor or relationship weak or outmoded, or one that offers no real future, the eclipse will “eclipse out” that situation quickly. Eclipses always seem to bring sudden news because outside factors come onto play, and those factors would be ones you have no control over. That’s why sometimes we feel a little helpless during eclipse time – we had no hand in what happens – truly, you have not lost all that much.
  • Only after you have swept out the cobwebs and cleared the decks of weak situations and relationship can you begin to live the life you were meant to live. If something or someone leaves, let it happen. Don’t look back, as tempting as that might be to do. You need to create empty space before the universe can fill it with something better. You don’t want to be in weak situations or unproductive relationships – the eclipses want us all to use our time on Earth well.

. . don’t burn the day. .

Ode to Dave

You insisted.
I resisted.

It took some time,
some 27, 34, 36, 40 tries.

You asked me to stay for a while,
But rhyme or reason I had none;
for heavy as stone was I,
with a preconceived idea of you.

Was not until we waved hello again the 41st,
that you swept me up, up and away
onward onto a sweet up and down joyride.

You caught me kicking out all the windows,
and asked, “Where are you going?”

Space between
closing in,
you took me by the hand and led me down by the river.
There stood before us -  a mighty dreaming tree.

Nine planets around the sun,
only one does the sun embrace.

Following your step into the light,
You cried, “Don’t drink the water!”
but rather, “Seek up an emotion…
and our cup is overflowing…”

Oh an’ another (little) thing:

“Look up at the sky,
with your mouth open wide.
Lick and taste.
What’s the use in worrying?
What’s the use in hurrying?
Turn, turn we almost become dizzy.
Some might tell you there’s no hope in hand,
just because
they feel hopeless;
But you don’t have to be a thing like that;
Take these chances;
Stand up,
Start with one step, however small.
Dream little darling, dream;
Dreamgirl, you be a ship in a bottle set sail.” ~~~~~

~~~~~ Stolen away was I on 55th and 3rd. ~~~~~

As I rewind and hit replay,
I was then such a fool to think
of you as a greedy little pig.
I must’ve had let you down,
for now I agree, we’re all proud monkeys after all.

Now steady as we go,
celebrate we will,
leaving busted stuff behind.
Everyday feels so right,
turning typical situations into those best of what’s around.

Hey captain,
Do what you will, always.
Walk where you like, your steps.
Do as you please,
I’ll back you up.

You persisted.
I conceded.

This I admit,
tastes so good.
Hard to believe an end to it.
How could this rhythm ever quit?
Bags packed,
on a plane,
hopefully to heaven…


And despite when the world ends,
you need not help yourself;
I’m coming waltzing back
and moving into your head.
So, break free,
collect your things,
you’re coming with me.

We’ll come away with something better.
Resting high above the clouds,
No restriction.

Would you not like to be,
sitting on top of the world
with your legs hanging free?

So damn lucky.

So damn lucky,
are we.

~ ml

Izod Center – East Rutherford, NJ

. . don’t burn the day. .

Bonus Trivia: Who can tell me how many single-count songs were referenced above? :-)

Indie Travelers’ Top 10 for 2008

While flipping through the news last night, it was reported that London was the #1 most traveled-to European city in 2007…and also being the dirtiest. Paris was #2, but received #1 billing for the unfriendliest. Amsterdam, Dublin and London share top nods as being the most friendliest. Having personally traveled to Amsterdam last year, I absolutely concur! Here’s proof! Some Dutchmen who volunteered to be our tour guides. :-)


Anyhoots, that little snippet of news made me curious to learn what the top travel destinations were for this year. I went off on my search, typing in all sorts and every travel expert/guide (Frommers, Lonely Planet, etc.) had their own Top 10′s. However, I then came across a site I had never heard of before, but took a liking to its hot spots for the year.

Now my peers regard me as being pretty well-traveled; I certainly do not entirely disagree with them but there are still just oh so many places on my wish list. I mean among those listed below, I can say I have knocked off one: Palermo, Sicily. I totally would LOVE to live in Buenos Aires for a period of time, and I hope to maybe hit up Thailand (though it would come after a few other must-go destinations while I’m in Shanghai) and perhaps (fingers-super-crossed) New Zealand… And mmmm Belize…and Budapest & Nepal sounds dope! But enough with my yapping…

Here it is!

BootsnAll.com, website for independent travelers, announces its Top 10 Destinations for 2008. The writers and editors of this global travel information and resource site have compiled ten great destinations that combine history and culture with value for travelers who prefer to arrange their own trips and challenge themselves in the most fascinating places in the world.

10 – Buenos Aires , Argentina — One of the nicest European cities of all is actually in South America. After its currency collaBuenos Airespse in 2003, this gorgeous place got embarrassingly cheap for foreigners, but that won’t go on forever, so don’t wait too long. Vegetarians may find beef-obsessed Argentina a bit challenging. It won’t be a deal-breaker, though, as this cosmopolitan city has something for everyone, including a diverse nightlife scene that usually goes until dawn or later. Brush up on your español before you go – it will help you experience the city more completely.
9 – Budapest, Hungary — The capital of Hungary is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Unlike some other Eastern European destinations, viBudapestsiting is still very cheap compared to the West. The old town district of Castle Hill is a highlight of this huge city, and the hearty portions of the paprika-accented food win over most who try it. You can spend days just admiring the classic architecture, but the city is also an excellent place to begin an exploration of the many historic Hungarian villages nearby.

8 – Marrakech, Morocco — This moderate Muslim country is easily visible and quickly reachable from the southern coast of Spain, but it feels a world away. Quickly pass throuMarrakechgh the “border-town” city of Tangier and on to Rabat, Fes, or Marrakech for a pleasant cultural shock on a backpacker’s budget. Choose Fes or Marrakech, and add in a smaller city to escape the constant tourism push, but skip the chaotic capital of Casablanca. For those with a bit more time, trekking the Atlas mountain ranges makes for an unforgettable adventure mixed with a cultural experience that contrasts nicely with Morocco’s bustling cities. Even for independent travelers, a tour using a local guide can be a great way to see all the magical parts of Morocco and avoid its often frustrating tourist traps.

Chiang Mai

7 – Chiang Mai, Thailand — This walled city in the Himalayan foothills is 700 kilometers north of Bangkok and is known as the gateway to northern Thailand. Over 300 Buddhist temples in all different styles dot the area, with the 13th century Wat Chiang Man being the oldest. An important trading center for many centuries, there’s plenty to do during the frequently steamy days. The famous Night Bazaar with its bargain crafts and fashions is the place to spend the cool Chiang Mai evenings. The fact that hotel rooms start around US$5.00 per night, and traditional Thai mini-resorts can be found for not much more, only sweetens the deal. This is a great place for a minor splurge for long term travelers in Southeast Asia.


6 – Imet Gogo, Ethiopia — Forget what you might have thought about Ethiopia before, this large East African country is not depressing or completely parched. A growing tourist infrastructure is making it easier to discover for adventurous travelers. Having never been colonized, Ethiopia has its own fascinating history and culture, which mix nicely with one of the most impressive networks of well preserved national parks in the world. The Omo Valley in the east provides an unforgettable look at African tribal life today. Hotels in Ethiopia start under US$10.00, but luxury is available if you’ve got the money.

Queenstown, New Zealand

5 – Queenstown, New Zealand — Anyone who has been to New Zealand knows that Queenstown is the tourist mecca of its South Island. During winter the city is filled with snowboarders and skiers; for the rest of the year, the Bungee-jumping and adventure-travel crowd moves in, so the nightlife is good year round. This postcard-perfect mountain city on a lake is also so charming that you’ll want to move there before you even reach the center of town for the first time. You can have a great visit using public transportation, but if you’ve rented a car or campervan, your possibilities for exploring the area greatly increase. Queenstown is not terribly cheap, but it’s not a budget buster either.


4 – Palermo, Sicily — This endlessly scenic island off Italy’s toe has its own ancient culture and even its own language, but in some ways it’s also more intensely Italian (and noticeably cheaper) than the main tourist cities in the north. The plentiful seafood is both exotic and simple, and the abundant vineyards ensure the wine keeps flowing at a very reasonable price. Check on the bustling capital of Palermo or the beach resort/fishing village of Cefalù at any time, except the sweltering and steamy summer. Ancient Greek ruins can be found in many areas and Mt. Etna – Europe’s largest active volcano – is easy to explore as well.

Petra, Jordan

3 – Petra, Jordan — The Middle East can sound scary and that helps keep Jordan from being overwhelmed with tourists, but this safe and welcoming country where most people speak some English – eco-tourism is quickly catching on – offers a fascinating look at the region with surprisingly few headaches. Don’t linger in the modern capital of Amman. Instead, spend a couple of days in the ancient city of Petra and another couple checking out the stunning desertscapes of Wadi Rum. Spring and fall are the best times to visit, but brave visitors are welcome all year round. As long as things remain stable in Jordan, it’s bound to start getting crowded in years to come.


2 – Placencia, Belize – This tiny English-speaking Central American country feels frozen in time, but in a very good way. Paved roads are a rarity on the popular tourist islands where most visitors go. Belize has world-class scuba diving, snorkeling, fishing, sailing, sea-kayaking, cave-tubing and jungle expeditions, mixed with fascinating Maya culture. It’s one of the cheapest Caribbean resort destinations now, but don’t wait too long. Developers and even celebrities have caught on (Leonardo DiCaprio is building an eco-resort on a private island in Belize and Francis Ford Coppola already owns a couple of places), so it won’t be this way forever.


1 – Kathmandu, Nepal — Most famous for being home to half of Mount Everest, there is a lot more to do in this ultra-photogenic country than follow a Sherpa into the sky. Trekking adventures for all skill levels are available throughout Nepal, and crowds still tend to be minimal for now. Check out some Bengal tigers, elephants and Indian rhinos during a guided jungle tour in the Royal Chitwan National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The capital of Kathmandu – which dates back to the 8th Century AD – is filled with temples, but also has a sturdy tourist infrastructure. Hotels for under US$10.00 per night are easy to find, but so are international business-class hotels for those with deeper pockets.

. . don’t burn the day. .

Home Life

Sooooo it’s been a week since I left the city and I’ve been pretty quiet on the blog front. (thank ya for those who’ve been checking in with me, regardless!) Reason being, I’ve been pushed and pulled by the fam in directions of all sorts since I’ve arrived… Plus, I really wanted to let all immediate thoughts and feelings of leaving the city subside a bit before I go off on the inevitable “I miss NY” posts…And even though I really DO miss the city right now, I will save for a later, more in-depth write-up.

So, home life. I can’t even really say I’ve experienced “real” homelife yet because I’ve been living nomadically between my siblings’ houses and my parents’ house for the last 7 nights. Eventually, when I get myself into a groove, I can perhaps comment more. But nevertheless, I can say I’ve gotten a good taste of what the next few months will be comprised of…

Being the youngest (esp of a large family), I get fed all sorts of errands and things-to-do. Well, actually really anyone who has free time is fed all sorts of run-around stuff. But seriously, the fact that I’m home for a few months is like a blessing for them. And at this point, I’m not complaining nor not complaining ☺ I mean, in between my well-prepared, seemingly 6 meals-a-day…. (good thing I’m not lacking in the appetite/metabolism department)….

My time has been occupied with hitting the mall, visiting my grandmother (incredibly strong woman – dedicated post to come), helping out at family-owned hair salon, picking up my little niece from school and helping her with homework, running errands for parents, assembling kitchen curtain rods, fixing direct tv cable box thingy that my parents always somehow complain about, helping out my sister with her slide presentations for work (cough. corporate bull shhhh. cough), and I’ve even gotten a taste of true soccer-mom-esque duty of driving my expecting sister-in-law to the grocery store (Yay! for big, clean aisles at Stop n’ Shop!!)

I’ve also been reeled into primetime television by my fam. Pussy Cat Dolls’ Girlicious AND American Idol. Sheesh. Girlicious is just BAD BAD BAD for the future of American girls. But American Idol, I gotta say my vote is for David Archuleta!!! This was my first time watching this season and boy has real talent and is only 17! After seeing him perform Phil Collin’s “Another Day in Paradise,” I was/am hooked! I even youtubed the kid to check his previous week’s rendition of one of my faves – John Lennon’s “Imagine.” I believe in this kid so much I was almost tempted to rock the AI vote!! (But I did not…)

Basically though, all of the above = totally NOT the life I lead in the city.

But it’s all starting to settle in I suppose. However, this does not mean that I don’t quadruple-check myself on the daily ala…

  • “Am I really at home right now?
  • How much longer am I home for?
  • Is this all really happening? Why did I think this was a good idea?
  • If I were in the city right now, I would be _____.”

My framed NY-skyline propped up on my bedside table greets me every time I walk into my bedroom. This helps preserve my sanity! I now understand when others view and respect folks who “make it” in the city. I mean, I understood it before, but now… I get it. NY is not for the weak and weary. It requires your switch to always be flipped ON. But of course this brings out the love/hate relationship I have with the city. But enough about that for now, I’ll save for another post I promise.

So yesterday, my moms said to me, “You know, sometimes when I look out the kitchen window and I see kids walking home from school, I have flashbacks and see you and your brothers walking home (from school)…” That statement stopped me in my tracks as it is so emotion-packed. (Go ahead, go back and re-read it.)

Going about my daily life and decisions is challenging enough, but now to think what my parents must go through in their 70 plus years of life and seeing their “kids” all grow up and live their own lives is both remarkable and moving. They’ve done a tremendous job as parents to the point where they cannot let go of their parenting duties in current day. True parents by every definition, if you ask me.

My mother’s nonchalant statement of nostalgia answered all my quadruple-check questions as mentioned above.

  • “Yes, I’m home.
  • I’m here temporarily (key word – thanks jack!) for another 3.5 months. (intermittently ☺ )
  • I’m here because I’ll be half way around the world for a year-long term at minimum.
  • If I were in the city, I’d be checking for ways to turn my switch OFF.”

So, rather than being fixed on what I could be / would be doing and so forth, I’ve decided to approach my time at home with a slightly different angle. Despite the barrage of questions, incessant nagging, and consicimg0749.jpgstent check-ins, I somehow really do feel fortunate that I am able to return to where it all started at this point of my life. (I kinda have to or else the next few months are gonna eat me up alive.) But really, I’ve been out of the house since I was 18. A lot has happened between then and now; friends from home have alluded to my growth and maturity. But a lot has happened on the homefront as well. As much as I’ve developed as an individual, that same amount of time frame has transpired and has had its effects on family/home/hometown…and many things have just as well, stayed the same.

Either way, it feels good to take a breather from being ON all the time. I feel fortunate that I can call a TO and view things from the sideline a bit. It also feels good to be able to spend time with those who really started it all for me. It feels nice to walk down the street, breathing fresh, crisp air and see young lads play touch football and/or basketball with their fathers. It’s also pretty awesome to not have to think of what to prepare for lunch/dinner, but rather have all meals already planned out and prepared, just waiting for consumption. With all that said, what’s a few months pinned against the last 9 years I’ve spent as a free soul?

So, for now….

I think I’m gonna stay home.
Have myself a home life.
Sittin’ in the slow-mo.
Listenin’ to the daylight.
- lyrics excerpted from song entitled “Home Life” from album Heavier Things by John Mayer (09.09.03)

. . don’t burn the day. .

The Good Ol’ Days

Last night, it became that much more official. I’m over it. I checked an event at the Hudson Hotel with some peeps, looked forward to some tunes and to get jiggy wit’ some… but vibe wasn’t right. It was sad. We left wondering, what had happened? or… what had happened to us? I mean, folks were dancin’ and such, but on a personal level, it just didn’t feel the same. I had myself a Hudson signature drinky drink and we dipped.

So, what’s the next sensible move after a not-feeling-this-event moment? Hit the Ritz (Carlton), of course! All I can say is “damn those nuts for keeping us put!” Strawberry shortcake is what got us there in the first place, and strawberry shortcake – ordered OFF the menu – kept us…along with the assorted nuts, lobster quesadilla as well as random topics of convo….including of course, music….

Particularly, one of which inspired this post, as it threw me back to 2001. 08-07-01 to be exact.

8701.jpgThis was the date Usher’s 8701 album dropped, and was THE project that ignited my music-industry-mojo-of-a-career. I was happy as can be at my very 1st internship…@ Arista Records. (I had interviewed with a few labels and PR companies for a period of couple months prior – with crutches, knee/leg brace and all from ACL reconstruction surgery – and had been offered internships, but for some reason, I felt the need to save myself because I WANTED Arista. And right before I was going to call back the newly formed J (Records) by Clive Davis to accept that internship, I got a call from my dream spot, Arista. There I went, following my heart. I held off calling J back. I took the interview with Arista. I walked in through the “gold doors” on 5th Ave and 57th, interviewed with HR (Sup ML!!) and then was interviewed by the Publicity department, and KNEW RIGHT THEN AND THERE. This was IT. This was where I belonged. My tingling gut told me so. I had held off those months for THIS moment.)

May 2001 is when it all started. I recall being asked by the senior publicist to head into the video dub room to dub like 25 copies of Usher’s comeback video/single, “U Remind Me” for press purposes… ya know, Regis & Kelly, Jay, Conan, Letterman and the like. Here, I found THE ACTUAL ARISTA PROMO VERSION of the video:


I was sooooo giddy in that dub room. Dub, Dub, Dubbing away! Felt uber-special for having this exclusive look at the video before release to major music video channels. I was stoked over the fact that I was in this claustrophobic room, a library filled with beta tapes of all Arista artists ranging from Aretha Franklin to Outkast to Whitney Houston to TLC to Goodie Mob to Annie Lennox to Patti Smith to Carlos Santana! And I had complete access to it all. Mwahahaha-ing with fingers clasping ala Mr. Burns from The Simpsons style – I was allll smiles! :-D :-D :-D

My internship binder still in tact:


confessions.jpgAnyhoots, we can fast forward to March/April 2004, and it all comes in full circle. Usher’s follow-up album, Confessions was released on 03.23.04. April 2004 officially closed the doors of the legendary Arista Records’ run. This also stopped my run in the major label game. 3 full years. 3 years that I would not trade in for the world. I was on the management side, the label side, the corporate side and all else in between. I had caught the tail-end of when the music industry was still “fun lovin’ fun.” I entered into the independent music & lifestyle marketing world thereafter and yada yada yada (another time).

This morning, I of course went to my ipod dock and played both albums in full, 8701 and Confessions . 8701 still has one of the best introludes ever. I would’ve never guessed from the first time I heard “Think of You” in 1994 from his debut album, would Usher both open and close the Arista gold doors for me! (Such a gentleman.) But, for all the time they were open, GOOOOOOOOD TIIIIIIIIIIMES were abundant!! One of the many highlights being, Outkast #1 Debut Party for Speakerboxxx/The Love Below (09.23.03) at Taj, NYC! WOW! What A Night! The sidecar introduced itself to me, and my colleagues and I got to know one another all the more better that night. We were indeed a family.


Better times had in the Arista dub room than on the Hudson Hotel dance floor. Hmmm… Yeah, Over It!

. . don’t burn the day. .

Give Up To Gain

I find myself in constant reminder mode of, “in order to gain/experience the new, the old must be given up.”

While the combo, “give” and “up,” is non-existent in my vocabulary, I can see how fitting these words are in my current state of mental flux… especially with leaving New York.

The idea is … You may have to give up one thing in your life to enjoy gain in another. Often to create the biggest changes, we have to create room first to let it in. If there are too many people who waste your time, unnecessary responsibilities that wear you out, clutter that slows you down, and mountains of unfinished projects that remind you to get organized, then this leaves no room for the new exciting things due to come your way.

It’s been an ongoing process, but has most definitely kicked itself into high gear in the last year or so; that is, for me to “give up” people, things, ideas that serve as dead-weight to my own personal progression. Sounds selfish, eh? Well, yes it is, but not meant so much in a bad way. Think about it. While yes, all things happen for a reason. People come in and out of our lives for a period of seconds, months, years or maybe lifetime and they all do really serve a purpose regardless of the time frame. But the point is, understand your relationship and either ride with it or take what you can learn and move on. If not, it’d be more selfish to string them along. But let’s not forget this is reciprocal. Share your good words and talents with others and hope it leaves its own impression.

I’ve personally come to a point where I (albeit somewhat forced, with my move and all, to) know the who’s and what’s I’d want to keep and what should be “given up.” After all, if I don’t make room, I’ll be like my mac with too many applications open…. ready to crash… and we don’t want that! I can only hope those I want to keep will keep me kept just the same.

Meanwhile, I prep to leave NY to GAIN the world…

. . don’t burn the day. .