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Lovingly shared by Gerald of Ojai


Posted on 27-11-2003

Sai Ram,
 
11-27-03
 
 Thursday Morning: There was increased police presence as the chief minister of Andhra Pradesh was here. This was the earliest I have seen Baba make an appearance.
 
 It was 6:55 when Babaís car drove onto the menís side with Baba blessing everyone. He entered the verandah from there. He took several people in for interviews. About 8:15 the chief minister showed up with his entourage. His car stopped right at the womenís entrance where he and about 20 other people escorted him through the womenís section, the way Babaís car normally goes, to the mandir and into the interview room.
 
After about 10 minutes he exited the same way. He returned to the VIP building where I believe he held a press conference. He left late morning.
 
Baba entered the temple and stay through bhajans. He left after arathi.
 
11-26-03
 
Wednesday Afternoon: Bihar Bal Vikas were prepared to present a skit. The kids were sitting on the white tile waiting for Baba. Just before 4:00, the car appeared. With Baba in the car, it entered the hall and once again surprised everyone as it continued straight instead of right. As it did so, some of the kids had to get out of the way. It went onto the menís side with its entrance onto the verandah from the menís ramp.
 
The play dealt with Hanuman and Rama. Baba had his picture taken with the cast. Bhajans, arathi and off into the sunset by car.
 
Wednesday Morning: Baba surprised everyone by coming out at 7AM. As the car drove in, it was turning to make a right just inside the entrance to go to the verandah through the women's side, when all of a sudden the car is going straight instead. The car moved about 5 mile an hour.
 
 It went straight to the men's side, turned right twice and instead of using the men's ramp to the verandah, the car went along the mandir with it on the right and entered the verandah from the women's side.
 
Baba blessed everyone as the car was moving. However, when the car stopped, Baba called some people in for interviews. An hour later, Baba left in the car.
 
Bhajans and arathi at 9:30.
 
11-25-03
 
Tuesday Afternoon: Baba came out at 3:55 for the play by bal vikas of Malaysia. It started immediately. It was a story about the importance of turning to god for help and seeking the forgiveness of those you have wronged. The performance was over at 5:00. Baba left.after arathi. No bhajans.
 
Tuesday Morning: Baba came out at 7:10. He gave the college boys from his various schools a set of whites, tops and bottoms. He personally gave some to the people on the verandah. .He went into the interview room. At 9:00 he came out to sit in his chair for bhajans and left after arathi.
 
The crowds are back to normal. Next we wait for the holiday rush.
 
Gerald


Posted on 25/11/2003

Subject: Birthday News

Sai Ram,
 
Medical camps were set up at Round Building 5 for various treatments. Also, there were aryuvedic and homeopathic camps. Opposite the North Indian Canteen, food to go was setup. I believe it was free. The lines for this were very long.
 
Western Canteen continues to be served by Italian cooks who will be here until the 6th.
 
11-22-03

Saturday Afternoon: The hall was decorated with flowers on the verandah, red carpet from womenís side to center and from center to verandah and white chairs near the verandah menís ramp. On the verandah were wooden chairs with marooned padding on the back and on the seat. Two lecterns were set up: one in the center with the other on the womenís side.
 
At 2:00 Baba came out in a silver car. There were very few people in the hall. He drove around checking the setup and had a long talk with the boys. After about ten minutes, he returned to the Poorna Chandra.
 
The hall filled to capacity with people watching from outside. Babaís boys sat down in the driveway. Behind them were more people. Television set remained set up helping all of us with the view.
 
In the center, on the menís side next to the driveway, was a staircase structure where photographers took pictures.
 
Because the vice president of India would be a speaker, there was extra security. Indian security men, many, dressed in suits and immaculately groomed were present as well as other men dressed more casually.
 
Commencement began with the college boys band leading the way followed by three men carrying what I believe are called standards.
 
Next was a convertible with Baba and the vice president in the back. The car drove up the center toward the mandir where both Baba and vice president got out to walk up to the verandah. The vice president sat in a chair on the left of center and Baba sat on the right. Both faced forward. Behind the vice president were security people.
 
Special recognition was given to students from Brindivan, Puttaparthi and Anantapur who excelled. About thirty or forty students received a parchment from Baba. Students wore color banners across their chest indicating their field of study.
 
The vice president praised the Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning and its students. They set an example for the world. Teaching values as part of education is what needed everywhere. Students should listen to Baba.
 
Baba spoke about the important of values.
 
The evening ended with the singing of the India national anthem. Everybody rose. Baba emphasized the India needs unity.
 
11-23-03

Birthday:
 
Many people lined up as early as midnight. The hall was fully packed with a tremendous crowd outside between the hall and West Prasanthi. At times, this crowd created problems. At one time, security lost control.
 
At 7:30, the vice president visited Baba in the Poorna Chandra briefly and then left.
 
The procession started with two different womenís bands followed by a menís band and pundits chanting
 
Baba came out in a red golf cart with no top and that had been decorated. The driver was in the back. Baba sat in the front giving us full view of him.
 
Seva dals and security was not prepared for what Baba did. The cart entered the womenís side, continued following the white to the menís side turned right. It entered the verandah from the menís side and exited to the womenís side going straight turning right until it got to entrance/exit where it turned right again going down the white center line back to the menís side. Here it turned right and instead of going back up onto the verandah went in front and next to it to the womenís side where it entered the verandah. The cart moved at about 5 miles per hour.
 
It is always amazing that no matter how unruly the crowd is before or after Baba comes, His presence always calms them.
 
The crowd was happy. He gave great darshan and blessed everyone with his hands and smile. Many felt the energy of his love.
 
Three people spoke in tribute to Baba: The former chief justice of India, Jumsai from the Thailand Sai school and Michael Goldstein.
 
Baba gave a discourse for about an hour. He retold the story of his life with special emphasis on certain events and on his divinity.
 
An older man was honored by Baba. He has known Baba all his life and dedicated his life to Baba. He told some stories about Baba.
 
There was prasad for everyone. Baba left.
 
Birthday Afternoon:

Full length calendars was passed out to everyone as was prasad.
 
Baba came out at 4p.m. in the same cart wearing a yellow gown. He was blessing everyone. The cart went across the hall on the white line to the menís side turn right twice to enter the verandah from the menís side. It continued to the womenís ramp where it turned to come on front of the verandah stopping by his chair on the menís side.

Baba blessed everyone. The crowd was a bit smaller. We were entertained by a famous Indian classical singer, Parveen Sultana and Dana Gillespe.
 
Afterwards, Baba blessed a poet who had written poems in Telegu about Baba and read a few. He was presented with a shawl.
 
11-24-03
 
 Monday Morning: Baba came out at 8:30. We thought he wasnít going to come. He gave good darshan. There were bhajans, arathi and Baba left at 9:50.
 
Monday Afternoon: At 2:55 Baba came out for the 3:00 performance by students from the Sathya Sai Primary School. They enacted a skit with words, singing and dancing. It involved the five elements, Baba and how his message and love is spreading around the world. About fifty students were involved. Flags from various counties were also used. They are very much devoted to Baba. It showed in their actions.
 
Before them, there was a performance by the drum band of the primary school consisting of about 15-20 girls.
 
Anantapur girls told a story in English which was emphasized by a vedic chants. They were wonderful. It was moving.
 
A college boy recited verses in English with the other boys repeating in Sanskrit what he said.
 
Last, there was a poem read.
 
A few bhajans, arathi and prasad. It end about 5:20.
 
Gerald


Posted on 22nd November, 2003

Sai Ram,
11-22-03

Saturday Morning: Baba came out at 7:10 to an almost full hall. A slight rain did not dampen the spirits of many who lined up as early as 2A.M. Baba standing looked at the men then holding onto the railing walked over to the womenís side giving them a great view.
 
As he walked passed the center ramp, he walked unassisted. He walked slowly and surely by himself as he walked on the verandah to guest who were sitting on the womenís side of the verandah. The crowd applauded.
 
He gave an interview to this group. Meanwhile, prasad was passed out in the form of sweets and apples. Bhajans started at 8:45.
 
This afternoon everyone must be seated by 2:30 for the commencement where the vice president of India will deliver an address. Afterward we are to go into the Poorna Chandra for performances by college students.

11-21-03
 
Friday Afternoon: Baba came out at 2:15 surprising everybody. The men who sit on the bench were just let in and those that sit on the floor were coming in. There were only a few women inside. In the center driveway, people were busy setting up for the play that was to be performed at about 4:00. The hall was basically empty.
 
The car drove in stopping at the womenís entrance for about five minutes while Baba spoke with a volunteer. The car, instead of turning in its usual place, turned at the big space in front of where the Anatapur girls sit. The car proceeded up the verandah. Baba spoke with a few people.
 
The car continued down the ramp on the menís side making a sharp left to go in front of the verandah and next to it. Objects had to be moved for the car to be able to go through. The car went in the center on the while tile as though to exit. When it got to just past the center driveway on the womenís side, Baba called about a dozen women over to the car. They went up to the womenís side of the mandir. The car continued to the first aisle where it normally goes and proceeded to the verandah. Baba went into the interview room. I am not sure if those women were called in for interviews.
 
About 3:45, Baba came out and the play started. It was put on by the Sathya Sai Baba Centre of Middlefield in Toronto, Canada. It was called ďFamilyĒ. It dealt with the importance of harmony in the family and putting human values into practice.
 
Gerald


Posted on 21st November, 2003

Sai Ram,

11-20-03

Thursday Morning Baba came out before 8:00. He gave great darshan facing the men then the women for a period of time while the boys chanted. After Baba sat down, the chanting stopped. Baba asked one boy to go to the microphone and lead the other boys in reciting verses. He was supposed to say it in English, line by line, while repeated it in Sanskrit.
 
At any rate, he couldn't do it. Another boy came up and led the group through two long verses. I think the first boy got nervous and couldn't remember. He stood there as the other boy led the group.
 
This continued until 9:00 when bhajans started followed by arathi. Baba left at 9:30.
 
Thursday Afternoon: Baba came out at 3:30. There was a skit put on by Bal Vikas of Singapore. It involved dialogue, singing and dancing with several backdrop changes.
 
It was about a boy who searches for how to have righteous in the heart. Answer: LOVE.
 
The next part of the program was a professional singer from Southern India whose name I was unable to learn. It is amazing that all the people I asked knew that she had won several awards but none could remember her name.
 
She sang Hindi classical bhajans. A few bhajans were sung by the boys with arathi at 5:30.
 
I sensed that the singer was disappointed that she didn't do arathi. I also felt that while her music was great and sang with some degree of devotion, that love was missing. I do not know if these impressions are correct. I wanted so much to become her music, I couldn't . I hope I am wrong about her.

Gerald

p.s Corrections sent on 21-11-2003 separately

Sai Ram,
 
I am happy to announce that I was wrong about the Hindi bhajan singer. Upon further checking, I learned that she would have had no expectation of doing arathi. With a few exceptions, men do all the arathis.

Also, what I didn't mention was that she was accompanied by three men. I am told that although she was singing with intense love and devotion, it might not have manifested that way. While she was singing, part of her energy was devoted to being professionally correct musically and coordinating with the men.

This is different from someone who perform alone or who is not a professional.
 
Gerald


11-21-03
 
Friday Morning: Baba came out at 7:10, sat in the chair while the boys sang bhajans and left at around 8:00 after arathi. Prasad was passed out to everyone.
 
 The netting has been removed along with some of the flowers and a banner that said LOVE ALL SERVE ALL.
 
This banner had been put up on Ladies Day just above the first gate as you go down the driveway.
 
The televisions are still there with Baba videos being shown while waiting for his actual physical appearance.
 
Gerald


Posted on 20-11-2003

Sai Ram,

There has been talk about Baba's health with people comment how old he is, how bad his injury is, he can't walk right, too bad about what happened, etc. The emphasis has been on the negative. Baba says that these kind of thinking and talking is hindering his progress.

Baba wants people to think only in the positive. He has repeatedly said that he has no pain and that his health is fine.

If your thinking and attitude can affect the avatar, just think about what it does to everyone else such as family, friends, co-workers and the world.

Gerald


Posted on 19th November, 2003

Sai Ram,

11-19-03

Ladies Day Afternoon: The program was in the Poorna Chandra. Baba came out at 3:30 in a wheelchair. He went down the ramp on the ladies side to the front of the stage where he spoke with some women and returned the same way to behind the curtain.

At 4:00, Baba walked over to the lift on the menís side and descended into the orchestra pit where about a dozen dignitaries were sitting. Baba sat in a big chair slightly on the womenís side where his eyes were probably at stage level.

The first performance was western type music performed by about 20 women who seemed to be non-Indians. They were followed by six women giving speeches. The sound system was not loud enough for everyone to hear them clearly.

The last performance was by Uma Subha, professional, accompanied by three men on instruments, who did ragas. Her performance was for 40 minutes. It was heavenly.

Arathi was at 6:10 with the women assisting.

Ladies Day Morning: As we entered the hall in the early morning hours, we were greeted by banners, flowers, netting and lights that were added during the night. One banner on each side on the hall had a message in Hindi about the importance of women. There were flowers on the mandir second floor level, on the columns of the mandir as well as on the columns on each side of the white tile area. Over this center area were four clear nettings that went from the center on the ceiling to four columns.

Outside, surrounding the Sarva Dharma statue, a fence had been up with lights in a decorative fashion, some of them were flashing.

Ladies did all of the morning prayers. It sounded nice. At one point about 50 ladies marched singing from the womenís side in front of the mandir to the menís side, around back and exited to return through the center driveway.

Baba car was in front of the Poorna Chandra at about 6:50. A procession started with a group of women marching into the hall, followed by a band consisting of Anantapur students and the car with Baba. The path in the hall on the womenís side was lined with small girls and small lite candles on the floor. The car went its normal path to the verandah, while the band continued playing. They were powerful, terrific, and wonderful. They marched to the center and maneuvered into a space on the womenís side by the driveway. The bandleader had a five-foot baton-like object. She marched up to Baba and presented him with a parchment paper that was rolled up.

Babaís chair was on the womenís side. Just to the right and behind his chair was a five-foot picture of his mother, Easwaramma. He lite a candle in front of her picture.

There were program pamphlets. A two-part play entitled "Shakti Ek Roop Anek" was presented by the Delhi, educational wing of the Sai Seva organization. It involved singing, dancing and storytelling. One part dealt with the creation and importance of the female aspect of creation. The second part was about several important woman including Yashoda, the Queen of Jhansi, Florence Nightingale and Easwaramma.

Several times girls that seemed younger than five presented something to Baba for his blessings.

The play ended with a tribute to Sai Baba. Baba, at times, moving his hands to the music. The women did arathi on Baba. He spoke with some men and left at about 8:30.

The play was very powerful and moving. At times, I was brought to tears, not by the skit but by the love and devotion that emanated from the players. Their love and devotion for Baba and their message was overwhelming.

Television sets around the hall carried the play to those who had trouble seeing.

Tuesday Afternoon: 11-18-03. The performance was announced for 4:00 but Baba came out shortly after 3:00 catching everyone off guard. The set for the play in front of the driveway. It seemed that when Baba saw that, he commented on them blocking peopleís view. There were televisions for people to watch the play.

The play was about Saint Panduranga. I am not sure about the spelling. He developed a big ego and Narayana taught him a lesson. There were several backdrop changes. After the performance, Baba had his picture taken with the casts who were bal vikas children from Kerala.

Arathi was about 4:45 with Baba leaving.

On Wednesday 11-19-03, Jack Hawley gave another talk at the North Indian Canteen. He and Louise spoke about detachment and surrender.

Gerald


Posted on 18th November, 2003

Sai Ram

 11-18-03

 Monday afternoon Baba gave only slight darshan. At 5:00 bhajans started, a few minutes later the car came with Baba. It stopped at the beginning of the verandah where Baba entered the temple where the bhajans were being sung. After arathi at 5:30, Baba left by car.

 However, this morning Baba sat for over an hour in the chair giving great darshan and blessings. The hall has more decoration including all the columns. Streamers have been put up over the driveway from the door of the PoornaChandra that Baba uses until the entrance to the hall on the women's side. They are in different colors. When the sun hits them, they glitter. The poles in that area have also been decorated. 

 Televisions sets have been set up next to columns throughout the hall. They are about 13" size and are set on tables/stands that is completely covered with a maroon colored cloth.There are about 13 sets on each side. There are also television sets in the center driveway up to the outer arches.

 The camera is by the pole in front where Baba usually sits. The picture is focused on Baba.

 Today, Tuesday morning, was the procession of the idols to Puttaparthi. The idols were paraded so that the villagers can view them and have darshan.

 The procession started at the temple in Puttaparthi where the chariot was brought up to the Gopuram Gate of the ashram. From inside the temple in the mandir, with the village band playing loud music, followed by about 20 pundits chanting, Rama and Krishna were each brought out on separate platforms. The procession went down the center driveway where the idols were installed in the chariot.

 Baba came out at 7:15, the procession from the mandir started about 7:30. Baba sat in his chair with bhajans being sung waiting for the idols to be returned. During bhajans, Baba seemed to be elsewhere, heavenly, as he leaned his head back listening to the music. His hands sometimed moved with the music.

 The idols returned about an hour later. With the pudits they went into the mandir. The musicians stopped in the driveway and sat down.

 Baba entered the temple. About 8:45 there was arathi followed by Baba leaving.

 There will be bal vika performance this afternoon and performances tomorrow morning as part of Ladies Day.

 Gerald


Posted on 17th November, 2003

Sai Ram,

The pace is picking up here as Birthday approaches with all its other activities. More people are coming in from all over the Earth and the spirit  world. Baba is as active as any avatar can be. He is enough to wear down any head of state or chief executive. If you didn't see people helping him, you would never know that there was anything physically wrong. His love and energy that he radiates is strong and getting stronger. He always amazes me and continues to be as unpredictable as ever. Those of us that even know the name are the most fortunate entities in all of history. 

On the 18th, there will be a procession of the idols from and/or to the temple in Puttaparthi from the mandir.

The 19th is Ladies Day with special events. I was thinking of wearing a sari but the seating is better on the men's side.

 I heard that Bal Vikas from several countries were going to put on presentations-plays,skits on the 20th or 21st. So far, there are Bal Vikas here from Singapore, Malaysia and Italy. The dates are uncertain. I heard that it might be done on the 22nd. 

The 22nd is Convocation which will be held in the Hall. 

Birthday, of course, will be filled with all sorts of activities. As far as I know it will be at Highview Stadium.

 Baba has been supervising a play that will be put on by the college boys at the convocation. He has left the Hall a number of times for about an hour or so to supervise.

Each time he surprises us. He usually goes from the women's side to the center driveway and exit to Main Road.The other day he came from the verandah onto the men's side to the driveway. A number of men felt the energy from his hand as he blessed them. 

One time he returned up the center driveway, right to enter the verandah from the women's side. Another time, as we all waited in the hall and a big crowd on the Main Road, he entered the ashram through a back road that leads from the college and comes out behind the Ganesh statue. The car went along the back of the mandir and the driveway on the ladies side between the mandir and the garden. He entered throught the usual entrance. This manuever caught evereyone by surprise even security.  

One day last week several vips, probably government, were here because outside the men's side there were about a dozen policemen with rifle and semi's. This last for two days. For the moment, they are gone but there is a heavy police presence. 

Professional cooks from Italy have returned to cook for the Western Canteen. This is their seva for Baba. We have had some interesting meals and I am looking forward to more. I will just have to walk more.  

Darshans have been about 15 to 2 minutes with good views of Baba.Many times he blesses the crowd. He has even turned toward the woman's side giving them a better view.

 The hall has been decorated with hangings from the ceilings, the mandir, the gate and fence. I think more decorations will be added. Tents have been erected for serving food.

 Gerald


Posted on 12-11-2003

Sent: Wednesday, November 12, 2003 1:24 AM
Subject: Akunda-Handicap-Birthday


Sai Ram,

There has been computer problem here.

Akhanda Bhajans 8-11-03 to 9-11-03

Saturday Morning: Baba came out for 20 minutes, went inside. Chanting, bajans and arathi.

Saturday Afternoon: Baba came out about 3:45, took letters, asked about the scaffolds. He watched the men remove the top of the scaffolding. The scaffolding had been removed except for these two remaining and the men were in the process of doing it then.

Baba went inside after about 20 mintues.

Akhanda bhajans started at 6:00 with a large crowd. Baba left at 6:45 from inside. He just got in the car and left.

Over the night the volume was on low until Baba came about 7:30. It got loud. The sound system was turned on. Before no one was joining the singing. I think it was because they couldn't hear the words. The bhajans were being sung inside the mandir.

Baba gave brief darshan and went inside the mandir. About an hour later, Baba got in the car to leave. The car was proceeding as it normally does. When it reached the point where it normally makes a left to enter the driveway to the Poorna Chandra, The car turned right heading toward the center of the hall. As it did so, the college boys filled up the empty space where the white tile is in the center. The car came down the middle and when it reached the center driveway it turned left, proceeded down thru the arches onto the Main Road. Baba head to the college auditorium to supervise a rehearsal for birthday or convocation.

What makes this interesting is that there was scaffolding between the first and second arches. The car had to go between them. I am not sure if there was enough room.

I was outside the Ganesh Gate for Baba to return. He was gone about an hour. As I watched him coming, I saw the lead police vehicle followed by Baba in the red Maruti car and a wave of white following. The white were the college boys following the car. Baba's car moved slowly, 5-10mph. Baba waved to everyone and seemed happy. I believe he looked directly at me and blessed me, although I felt no special buzz.

Back in the hall everyone was waiting for his arrival. He didn't come. He went to the front of the Poorna Chandra by going around the P-C. After Baba was let out. The car went back to it space in the P-C.

The volume was once again low and few people remained or sung. The crowd started to build up at about 3:00. By 6:00 it was full..

Baba came about 4:10 giving a very short darshan and then went inside the temple..

About fifty of the boys, maybe more, formed a human chain going down the driveway to the outside of the north side of the hall. Food was brought in and placed on the verandah, on the women's side and on the men's side. This took about an hour. Big pots of food were brought in on wagons requiring two or three boys each.

In the middle of all this, Baba came out. The workers who had been repairing the hall had been seated on the white tile in front of the mandir and on the women's side. Baba blessed them. Each man came before Baba and was presented with a watch that was wrapped in red. Some of the men touched the floor by his feet, others did hands together. They were grateful and happy.

Baba materialized a necklace for the supervisor of the men.

As they sat on the floor, Baba decided to feed them. Boys went rushing about for bowls and food to give them. Each man got two bowls of food and the gift. They left very happy.

Baba went back inside and the boys who were bringing in the food resumed.

After arathi at 6:00, everyone was served prasad which consisted of one bowl of sweet rice and one bowl of sour rice. Life is both sweet and sour. The men had formed lines where they were back to back and then a row. I understand that on the women's side there was confusion.

In the midst of all this Baba left.

One proof of Baba's divinity was how he treated the workers. He made them special. He took time out to thank them and to give them prasad before everyone else.

Monday Morning: Baba came out at 7:20 for about 15 - 20 minutes. He blessed everyone, went into the interview room. At 8:00 he came out. The workers had been seated again in the same place. Baba once again blessed them as a group and individually as they came up to receive a dhoti from him. He was on the women's side of the verandah. The work is finished except for some finishing touches.

Baba left at 9:45.

Monday Afternoon: Baba came out at 4:15, stood by the rail giving good darshan and then sat down. Chanting. The scaffolding were gone. Bhajans, arathi. Baba left at 5:45.

Tuesday Morning: Baba came out at 7:15, looked at everyone, spoke to a few people and left at 7:30. Bhajans and arathi.

Tuesday Afternoon: Baba came out at 3:10 in the red car. There were very few people there, a few students and a few VIP's. It entered as usual went on to the verandah and kept going. It entered the men's side and turned left in front of the mandir then down the driveway and out to the college once again. Baba returned at 5:15 going straight to the PoornaChandra. There were bhajans and arthi.

It was interesting how everybody waited for Baba's return. No mass exodus.

The big excitement while we were waiting was the monkey chase. Two small and medium size monkeys were chased by a large monkey from the roof of the hall. They went across to East Prasanthi by electrical line where the large one chased the others particularly the middle size one. He didn't catch them.

Wednesday Morning: Today is Handicap Day. Baba gave various devices to about 50 handicap people of all ages plus a green cloth or cape. I am not sure what that was. They were from different places in Andhra Pradesh. For a few day there has been a large group here from A-P. Some girls sang songs to Baba in Telugu and a description of the items were mentioned.

Today is Baba's lunar birthday. The A-P women got Baba to light three candles, signifying purity, for his birthday. They sang Telugu bhajans and arathi.

Baba had given a 30 minute discourse, praising them and that handicap people usually do more than people who are not.

Gerald



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