Most people travel to NH to ski, snowboard, and enjoy the outdoors.
Me? I go to NH to completely mess around while taking in Mother Nature's doings.
I briefly visited New Hampshire back in November as well as January to see some of my friends.
Here are my little moments.
I've always wanted to go to Keene, NH. I'm not sure why. Honestly...I really can't think of why I would want to go.
But, with that being said, I'm glad I came to Keene before it was buried in snow!
The area is adorable and quaint. Stores are closely tucked aside one another. Local businesses flourish throughout the area. It's cozy and the lack of cell phone service is both a bad thing, and a great thing.
Thinking of Robin Williams and Jumanji
While in Keene, my friends and I experienced nostalgia and bittersweet memories that encompass reflecting back on childhood. We saw some of the shooting locations for the 1995 classic, Jumanji starring the late and great Robin Williams.
There is something so beautiful, yet tragic, seeing portions of your personal pop culture history and realizing that time has truly passed and there is no way to return, yet through media like film and photos.
Rest in Peace Robin Williams. We miss you and thank you for bringing joy into the lives of people all over the globe.
Before returning back to campus to prepare to head North the following day, we visited a quiet and serene park and filled it with laughter. While exploring in the park, we found an abandoned shovel (which obviously calls for an impromptu photoshoot).
Moments like these makes me grateful for the friends and moments I'm able to share during my time on Earth.
Inhale the Imagery
Months, a season, and a hair change cut later - I returned to New Hampshire to visit my friends. This time around was focused mainly on taking in the beauty of the state.
My friends attend Franklin Pierce University, which resides in Rindge NH. Unlike the typical Boston campus, this campus has plenty of land to explore and enjoy...including a MOUNTAIN. A MOUNTAIN...
What do you do when you're faced with a beautiful, emotion-provoking, mountain?
I took my time and allowed myself to indulge in painting and creating a picture that I felt represented the peaceful emotions I experienced while sitting on the frozen lake outside of Franklin Pierce.
Yes, you read that correctly. The lake which faced the mountain was frozen solid...which clearly means go walk on water like you're Jesus before it thaws out!!!
Franklin Pierce's Hidden Get-Away
Before I left New Hampshire, my friends Ryan and Vic showed me a hidden gem on campus. On campus, there is a little cabin facing a former ski lift trail. Not only is the view spectacular, but the inside is even cooler!
Inside lies a pad to hang out, watch tv, and chill. In the basement of the cabin is even cooler. The university created an indoor rock-wall climbing experience for its students.
I was amazed by the effort and care the university took to assure its students were content and entertained. The campus is truly gorgeous and perhaps if I could travel back in time to when I enrolled in college, I would've attended here.
Special thanks to Ryan and Vic for hosting me and showing me around your beautiful school and neighborhood.
While driving down the East Coast on my November road trip, I spent some time with my Uncle Roger in South Carolina. Aside from going to the zoo and enjoying the beach, we took to the historic Brookgreen Gardens.
Brookgreen Gardens combines art, sculptures, gardens and a wildlife preserve together. Visitors are free to explore the gardens, observe wildlife, enjoy a picnic, and take in the beauty and relaxation of the Gardens.
Prior to coming to South Carolina, I had never heard of Brookgreen Gardens. I was only familiar of Myrtle Beach as a popular tourist destination.
Now, Brookgreen Gardens is my favorite destination in South Carolina and I cannot wait to explore the area again soon.
Nature and Art Combined
When I arrived onsite, I was nearly overwhelmed by how vast the property was and how much foot there was to cover.
My Uncle Roger and I decided to take on the sculpture area by foot then take his car to the wildlife preserve portion.
Every aspect of the property was filled with art of nature that captivated me. Every time I turned, there was a new thing to take in, observe, and appreciate.
Eurydice and Orpheus
One of my favorite stories of Greek Mythology is that of Eurydice and Orpheus. The play tells the tale of Eurydice who is killed and her husband, Orpheus, who attempts to bring her back from the dead by visiting the Underworld.
This story moved me while in high school, and I've never forgotten it since.
Therefore, I was thrilled to see the sculpture adaptation of Eurydice and Orpheus. I thought the presentation of these sculptures were almost as beautiful as the story itself.
Peace of Mind
One of the most spectacular aspects of Brookgreen Gardens is the sensation of peace of mind. The sense of calmness and serenity is undeniable.
To sit and collect my thoughts and feel deep appreciation for life felt necessary after the previous months of hurdles and issues regarding my personal life and illness.
How do these images make you feel? Do you feel at ease? Warm?
Are you impressed by the craftsmanship of these sculptures?
Nap Time for Adorable Animals
Enjoy these adorable photos I captured while visiting the wildlife refugee! Sleepy babies!!!
Feathers and Friends
I love these photos I captured while observing the animals.
Enjoy these critters!
Leaving the Garden
Before I left, I took a moment to appreciate the beauty and time I spent.
I realized I might not ever return to these beautiful and peaceful place.
I realized how blessed I was to have taken a chance, hit the road, and experienced the beauty of life outside my comfort zone.
Over a year ago, I went to Washington DC with other students from UMass Dartmouth. We boarded a shuttle bus and drove down to see the African American Culture and History museum, Howard University, the Frederick Douglass house, and have dinner at Bus Boys and Poets.
It was an incredible experience being surrounded by history, art, and culture. Ever since then, I've had a craving to return to DC and explore other aspects of the country's capitol.
***As a preface, I wanted to note that I've decided not to go heavy on the photos for this blog post. I photographed a lot at the Holocaust Memorial Museum but decided to include minimal photos. I believe that it's best to experience what I had experienced in DC for yourself, first-hand.
The Most Important Meal of the Day!
Before I left my Baltimore Airbnb, I decided to do a quick Yelp search of breakfast places in the area. One in particular caught my eye. "Lost in the 50's diner". Anyone who knows me knows I LOVE the style of the 50's (the clothes, the furniture, the music, the cars!) so I had to have breakfast before I explored DC for the day.
The diner was absolutely precious. It seemed like it was locked in time. Everything from the decor, to the furniture, even the prices were seemingly from the 50's. I started my day with chocolate milk, grits, toast, and a poached egg. I was full and energized for less than $10 and I was ready to explore DC!
After parking my car for the day, I decided to hit the gift shop first. Every state I explore, I pick up a pin or button for my collection. The last time I was in DC, President Obama was still in office.
So...I was a little surprised to see the gift shop looking like...well...this.
I really don't know what else to say besides I can't believe this is real life...still. I don't like to get political but...geez.
Engulfed in History
The first time I've truly traveled alone was during this road trip. I had never been to a museum alone or really spent significant time in my own company.
Walking around DC, reading and observing monuments, taking my time and allowing new knowledge to find me was such a beautiful and powerful experience. I spent hours walking around DC, reading and taking in whatever I could.
I thought about the history and the footsteps that were here before me. The fights for equality. The battles for the US. The elections, the movements, the justices and injustices.
I thought about the people who died for this country. The people who died for women's rights and for African American rights. I thought about all the wrongs in today's country and thought about how I could participate in helping to create a better tomorrow.
I want to help participate in a better tomorrow.
Little (Monumental) Moments
Although it was a cloudy day exploring DC, it was beautiful. Those who were also out seemed so thrilled to be in the capitol. It was beautiful to see people of all ages and backgrounds being captivated by the history and culture among us.
History and politics can push us so far away, but can also bring us together. It can be so painful and devastating to see...but also so beautiful and powerful.
I felt so emotionally moved. I wanted these moments to last forever.
Monuments Up Close (Aka, Meeting Celebrities)
When I went to DC the first time, we didn't have enough time to visit any of the monuments outside of the agenda. The travel time and time waiting for seats at restaurants led to us having no extra time to explore.
To me, seeing parts of history is like meeting a celebrity. When I traveled to the Jersey Shore and walked the boardwalk, it was like meeting a celebrity. It sounds cheesy but it feels so monumental to me. It feels so powerful and beautiful to step into parts of history and out of the places you know so well and to explore what you've heard about but have never seen before.
Therefore, FINALLY seeing the monuments up close was MONUMENTAL to me! Spending 20 years seeing images in books, clips on tv, hearing stories from friends...I was so ready to see history in person. I felt like a kid in a candy store or Disney World. It was so thrilling to see the monuments in real life.
But, it also made me think deeply. Monuments are supposed to honor aspects of history that led to positive change and sacrifices. Then why are there still monuments of historic figures that should NOT be honored? Historic figures that led to minorities experiences suffering and mistreatment?
The Holocaust Museum
This day. This day was about learning. About opening up my mind and heart and allowing myself to be emotionally moved.
So I did. I allowed my mind and heart to be open.
When I visited the African American Culture and History museum, I allowed my mind and heart to open. I allowed tears to flow, and questions to be raised. I learned that seeing and experiencing a museum in person triumphs what is learned in the classroom.
With that being said, I've included some images from the Holocaust museum. I've decided to not include all images or my thoughts. I believe museums like this and the African American Culture and History Museum should be experienced in person individually.
Whether you watched Jersey Shore or not, I bet once upon a time you wanted to visit the shore and see the guidos get down. I wasn't a die-hard fan of the show...but...who didn't tune in when Ronny and Sam fought? Or when Snooki got clocked in the face?
While in NJ for a photoshoot, I decided to take a trip to the Shore and see what I've been missing.
Ghost Town on the Boardwalk
After spending my entire life picturing the Jersey Shore as this wild and rambunctious travel destination, I felt a little surprised by what I discovered when I arrived to the Shore. I sort-of forgot about how seasonal the Jersey Shore is; it's like The Cape meaning tourists flock all summer long but then it's quiet the moment the chill sets in.
It was a really unique experience walking down the boardwalk alone, seeing the occasional jogger. It seemed like a scary movie. One of those films about the young adults that go to some carnival or amusement park and some demonic force swings in.
In a way, it was beautiful to see the boardwalk in this light. Boarded up buildings lined the walk that once boomed with tourists.
Check, Check, Check Off the Bucketlist
Do I need to say much? I went to the Shore house from the Jersey Shore show. No, I didn't go inside or on the tour. No I didn't meet Snooki. But hey I saw THE house from the Jersey Shore show about people stuck inside a house together.
Fist bump, bro!
Mindfulness at the Shore
As I walked up and down the beach, I felt multiple emotions.
The peacefulness of the ocean waves lightly crashing on the shore. The stillness of the air. The lack of others on the beach as I was there. The shift of the day slowly coming to a close.
I felt so much admiration. This shore has seen millions of people yet keeps such a unique and seemingly everlasting beauty.
I felt so empty yet full of inner-peace at the same time. I felt fortunate to be here, in this moment, breathing in the shore's air. I felt so accomplished. I had never been to New Jersey...or to New Jersey alone for that matter. I made it. I conquered an obstacle. I made it to a new place.
I quietly admired the beach to myself before I left to find dinner. Darkness approached and it was time to seek out an Airbnb and choose the next state to head to.
Bites Before I Drive
Before I hit the road to the next leg on my road trip, I went to Aqua Blu for dinner. I had a 3 course meal of fried calamari, stuffed shells, and tiramisu. The bread and oil was a great snack after a long day of travel. The restaurant had great service and even better food.
I finished the meal with a shot of espresso, booked my Airbnb in Philly, and hit the road!
If I was to describe Philly in one word, it would be haunting. While in Philly, I felt an unshakable sense of dark, looming grief. Every where I looked, I saw signs of the emotions I felt. Was it the weather that brought on these sensations or is there something dark lingering in the city of Philly?
I arrived in Philly after a fantastic day of exploring New Jersey. I booked an Aibnb and I was kindly greeted by the host.
The space was perfect for my stay in the area. The room had space to put my belongings, a very comfortable bed, and even water and a light snack. I also appreciated how the bathroom included shampoo, body wash, and a hair dryer. I was also able to put my medication safely in a fridge downstairs along with my leftovers from NJ.
I rested up, had my leftovers for breakfast, and got ready to hit the road to explore the state for the day!
Paintings and Pain
As I drove throughout Philly, I noticed an extreme contrast throughout the area. One corner would be full of retail shops, colorful murals, and attractions flocking with tourists. Another corner would be full of decomposing buildings, homeless residents, and vandalized homes. There was something so somber yet poetic about the intersecting streets of Philly.
Fog added to the general eeriness of the city.
Murals brought life and an uplifting sense to the dark streets.
I loved the little quirky touches throughout the city.
Before there were modern marvels like "It" and "The Shining"...even way before Hitchcock... Poe made hearts race and bodies tremble in utter fear.
I recall being fascinated by the poet and short story master when I was younger. I was driving around, I took a corner and stumbled across his property. I hastily parked my car and hurried to the property. Let down, I found the property closed on the day I visited. Nevertheless, I was thrilled to be outside the historic site of the famous Edgar Allen Poe.
As I rounded the building, I couldn't help to feel the chills. Fog and Poe? Now that's a site to experience!
I knew long before I started my road trip adventures that I would someday land at Paddy's. To fans of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia", this is a must seen while visiting PA. I stepped in the bar and admired the pictures and familiar faces in the pictures.
Cheesin' while mentally checking off another box on the bucket list!
I Like Big Bells and I Cannot Lie
Did you really visit Philly if you didn't see the Liberty Bell?
After circling streets for nearly 20 minutes, I finally found a spot diagonal to the massive piece of history. After getting through what looked like a mini TSA, I briskly read a bit about the history of the bell before checking it out.
Is it dumb if I saw I didn't expect it to be so massive?
Abnormalities and Medical Mysteries
When I was little, I used to spook myself out and watch the creepy TV shows on the Travel Network and the Discovery Network. I remember, so clearly, when I saw the Mutter Museum featured on one of my freaky shows. Bulging face tumors, Siamese twins preserved in casts, a giant colon the size of a couch! Everything bizarre and stomach-turning has residency at the Mutter Museum.
Unfortunately, photography is prohibited. In my opinion, this is one of the best museums I have ever been to. It is interesting and memorable, and you'll surely learn something new.
FYI - there is a student discount, too ;)
Last Stop is a Spooky One!
Towards the end of my little East Coast road trip, I slept in Pennsylvania on my last night. I had been driving up North from South Carolina and I decided to stay in PA. I always try to experience unique and memorable places...
Sleeping Above A Bar
As I drove further away from South Carolina, the winter beast showed its teeth! I decided to stay in an Airbnb above a bar in PA. I thought this was super unique and bizarre opportunity and I enjoyed myself (minus the chill in the room!).
How many people do I know that have spontaneously slept above a bar?
Chilly + Creepy = Peace Out, PA!
As I continued on my last leg of my road trip, the fog from a week prior changed into snow. The more I drove, the more graveyards and grey buildings I saw. If I wasn't so anxious to get home, I would have explored this creepy part of the state. I did enjoy my time in the state and look forward to the next time I return!
11/18/17 and 11/19/17
A Week of Thanks: Visiting a Giant Rock, T-Day Style Guide, Black Friday Shopping, and Time Traveling
Thanksgiving. A holiday only Americans recognize. A day to proclaim you are grateful by partaking in hedonism. We dress up in our best to sit in the house and to engorge in food until we’re stuffed beyond words.
Then, (if you’re insane or a thrill seeker), we rise like the Mayflower over the raging waves and we ‘venture off to our mall to terrorize minimum wage paid employees by raiding the shelves of our consumeristic society.
Who doesn’t like to give thanks and then throw those values out the window to shop, shop, shop, and shop some more?
For me, this time of year is one of my favorites. As you may know, I am currently not enrolled in college due to my lil’ Lupus procedure. Therefore, holidays are the BEST because I’m no longer the only millennial stranded in town. I finally get to see friends and catch up before they ship back off to school.
Visiting The Rock (No...Not Dwayne)
I am so grateful for the friendships I have and the people who have came into my life. From high school to now, I feel as if I’ve lost people but also gained so many genuine, kind friends.
To start off the fabulous week of Thanksgiving festivities, friends Ryan and Lauren and I traveled to Plymouth Rock to see the rock in all its glory!
Not really sure what else to say...it's a rock surrounded by an enclosure. It's like the Lincoln Memorial besides this makes no sense at all...really a spectacle to be seen.
Not sure if I'm really overwhelmed by it or really underwhelmed. All I know is that I dressed up to MATCH a ROCK.
Turkey Time & Style Guide
Given the opportunity to slay, you know I will. Taking my style guide from my previous post, I implemented it in my T-Day look.
I may look like something off the menu (at Mcdonald's) but I'm rocking my ketchup dress, mustard legs, and patty brown clog heels. I even have a Victorian figure ring in orange to match.
Looking ready for the autumn season.
Here are some moments from my Thanksgiving.. from my family to yours!
Cutting the turkey with a turkey hat...snapping my shoes during a game of Heads Up.. the usual holiday spectacles.
Black Friday (aka, Black Cryday)
Finally...for the first time ever, I adventure and live the Black Friday adventures with friends, Ryan and Vic.
Are you smart enough to NOT Black Friday shop? If so, I covered my other-worldly experience while shopping.
Round One: 10:30-3 am
Here...in my prime. Thinking Black Friday shopping was a good idea. Oh, how very wrong I was.
Here is a moment I captured. A moment where everything would change forever. Minions at the mall to market ANOTHER minion movie. STOP. MAKING. MINION. MOVIES. GOD DAMMIT.
Here...in all its glory. Chaos at the mall.
As the time passed at the mall...all of my senses were lost. Why am I here? Where am I? Will there be leftovers left in the fridge by the time I get out of this hell hole?
Look at all these lines. For what? All these deals are available online. But here I am. One with the chaos. I am chaos.
The chaos has set in. I am laughing at nothing. What time is it? Did I leave my wax melt burning? I should buy more wax melts.
Lines...lines...lines...lines to where? We will never find out.
Lines to NO WHERE
Here we are. Vic, Ryan, and I waiting in line for the Target deals. Excited. Enthralled. Ready to get the deals unlike any other customer has ever before.
But then...disaster struck. We noticed Target didn't open until 6 am. People waiting in line scrambled. Children jumped the gate. And we turned around solemnly and left the mall.
Round 2 - 10:30 am-5 pm
After sleeping for a bit, I felt ready to return to the alternate universe we call Black Friday. Juice box in hand, tears in my eyes, I was ready to make like a bald man and get out of hair.
And we're off...
Like the western cowboys on the frontier land, we set out for more deals. Kohls, the Apple Store, the world wasn't prepared for our deal craving selves.
Was I prepared to set out for more deals? The answer is no, probably not.
The PEAK of the Day
At one point, we ended up at the holy land. Toys R Us. Not only did I get through the Christmas check list I had made, I was overpowered by nostalgia and pure joy.
Vic and I found Fur-Real-Friends (I used to have the cat) and we found plenty of claw machines and gumball machines. Vic even won a puppy at the claw machine!
It was all fun and games until we arrived at IHop.
Dear God, why. Why was this IHop established? Why were we brought here?
We should've went to Friendly's...
This was haunting. Dear God...I will forever be traumatized. This IHop had no music. No customers. We could hear the employees fighting in the back. I felt bad for the server.
If I didn't take photos, I would have thought I dreamt this...
I'm going to suppress it again now.
Ready for Bed
Did this day even happen? I needed sleep. But what is sleep? Have I ever slept before?
Even the signs at the Hanover mall were asleep. At least I made a new friend named Ryan's cat.
Time Travelin' To Plymouth
We slept. We recovered. Ryan and I were ready to take on the newest adventure.
We took to the streets of Plymouth to enjoy the day. First stop, Crabby shack. Why not fuel up on delicious seafood?!
We arrived to Plimouth Plantation on the LAST DAY it was opened.
It was like the pilgrims of the past whispered,"...go, my child...".
All I have to say is "Fudge yeah" to free fudge at the plantation.
We made it through the ripples of time to meet Native Americans before the pilgrims settled.
Before traveling to the settlers' land, we took a pit stop and saw pottery being made and cranberries being prepped for dinner. Yummy, yummy.
Ahhh... the beauty of the pilgrims' land,
We went into pilgrims' homes. We saw relics from the past. And, a pilgrim made Ryan help him bring a pail of water up a hill. Just call us Jack and Jill!
Finally! We bought a house together. Best friends forever and we've finally got a house together!!!
Who wants an invitation to our Christmas party?
Aww, we're all moved in and we just adopted some new goats for pets! The neighbors are lovely and just peachy!
It was a great Thanksgiving week! I hope you had a great T-Day as well!
I was fortunate to have had the opportunity to travel to Washington DC with a group of intelligent, passionate, and well rounded students for the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Social Justice trip. With social justice, empowerment, learning, and passion; I knew this trip was going to be an experience I would never forget. UMass Dartmouth SAIL posted on their Instagram about the Social Justice Trip and after reading about the trip, I signed up. 40 seats were available and I was beyond happy to have made the deadline!
About the Trip
As a group, we traveled to Washington DC by bus to visit significant places and landmarks that demonstrate African American history and culture. We visited the Frederick Douglass House, the NEW Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, the African American Civil War Museum, and Howard University. Prior to the trip, I had never been to DC let alone any of this locations so I was thrilled to finally experience these places and learn the history deeply embedded in America's roots.
Frederick Douglass House
Frederick Douglass was a powerful leader in the anti-slavery movement, a public speaker, and the first African American to hold a high US government rank. We had the pleasure of visiting his home.
It was eye-opening to see each room preserved so delicately. Seeing the tools used to wash clothing, the fabrics and patterns, and the decorations gave insights on the daily life of Douglass. It was beautiful and haunting at the same time; to see where such a great and powerful man once spent his days and where he had passed, by the front door itself!
It was haunting to me to contrast how Douglass lived compared to other African Americans during his time.
National Museum of African American History and Culture
When I read that we were going to see the NEW National Museum of African American History and Culture, excitement came to mind. I have read reviews, seen videos, and watched interviews of people who toured the museum.
First of all, I believe ALL schools should bring their students on a trip to this museum. When learning about slavery as a child, it is difficult to truly comprehend the savagery and horror of what was the system.
Exploring the museum showed what words and textbooks cannot represent. You become a changed person when you see a child's cradle with slave chains on it. Your heart will wrench when you see the children's toys mocking African Americans. You will feel disgusted, revolted, and horrified with every step throughout the museum. You will feel helpless when you see Emmett Till in his casket. You will cry and weep and FEEL EMOTIONS, and that's perfect.
People need to understand African American history and culture. People must feel and see the pain and suffering of centuries. People who are judgmental, racist, and all around hateful NEED to walk through this museum. As Donald Trump takes his place into office (Dear God, how did this happen?), the American population as a whole should go through this museum and recognize the devastating history.
We, the people of this country, cannot make change without knowledge and there are far too many people who are uneducated in the history of African American culture. This museum is significant in so many ways and its ability to educate people of all races and backgrounds is astounding.
The African American Civil War Museum Monument
When you visualize war, what do you see? Death? Violence? The divide between men? Most don't picture the Civil War with this thought in mind; African Americans wanted to enlist in the war due to being equal with the white soldiers enlisted. Being in the same uniform and being treated equally as a solider was a leading step in the civil rights movement. Below are some photographs from the museum which demonstrate the strides African Americans made during the Civil War.
The African American Civil War Museum
When you walk among Howard University, the sense of school pride and empowerment cannot be denied. A beautiful school with a luscious and rich history, Howard University is a Historically Black University (HBCU). Meeting some members of the student body, the students were so intelligent, passionate, and full of grace and poise. Learning about the history of fraternities and sororities and the significance of the school was the icing on the trip.
Here are some other images I took on the trip!
Wrap Up & Final Thoughts
As someone who has always been open-minded, and judgement free, it horrifies me on how most non-liberal white people act and think. During this election season, we have seen the worst from people. I cannot believe the hate the BLM movement receives and the ignorance of most people regarding the movement. This trip has made me more empowered as a US citizen, as a friend, and as an ally. This trip has lit my fire and has influenced me in many positive ways.
As Donald Trump is sworn into office (Again...Dear God, WHY?!), we are going to need more passionate and informed people to fight and stick up for the lives of not only African Americans, but Muslims, Native Americans and Latinos (as well as women, too). Our country is divided and with this trip, I am more determined to be a safe space and a fighting ally for those who are mistreated.
American history is wrapped in our daily lives, yet most do not notice it. We ignore our history due to the shame and disgrace we feel.
(I hope this isn't too blunt...) but white people NEED to go to the historic locations and museums that I was so lucky to go to. Racism and hatred will continue occurring until education and acceptance is instilled. I was very disappointed with the lack of white people in the museum while we toured and there is no excuse! No matter your race, gender, age; Americans need to be truly educated about African American history. Public schools do not do enough!
Empower and educate yourself. Go to museums. Go to BLM rallies. Correct people when they are misinformed. Correct people when their "joke" isn't funny. Remember their names: Sandra Bland, Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice...the list (sadly) goes on. Don't stop fighting. Let your voice be heard.
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