Wess

Anybody east coast cruising and want to share covid reality?

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Wife and I didn't plan to do any extensive cruising this year given all the covid rules but am considering rethinking that.

Have helped a number of friends move boats up and down the east coast including a few in the NE where there are more rules about quarantine or testing.  But in reality those rules all seem to be being ignored (or no practical way to enforce on yachties not sure which) by the states and locals and everywhere I have been folks were basically in don't ask and don't tell mode and seemed very happy to have the business and take the money.  So we are maybe thinking of some September cruising.... have mask will travel??

The question is have I just been lucky in terms of where/when I went on these deliveries? 

Is anyone out cruising the NE states and what are you encountering in terms of practical implementation and reality of the covid rules being applied?

Has anyone encountered strict enforcement of the covid rules and where/when?

No politics please.  Just looking for real life experience. 

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We're in Maine - came up from Annapolis-ish since June, spent a month on LIS. MD was somewhat locked down at Memorial Day. Marinas were opening up for transients, but shore-side facilities etc were not. 

LIS was essentially closed in June. Clubs were not welcoming transients for moorings and from what I can tell, are still not. Shore-side facilities remain closed. 

RI seems relatively open, despite former quarantine rules. Friends have been in Narragansett and Block in the last two weeks and report things are back.

Maine is open. Restaurants are operating either reduced capacity or outdoors only. Masks required indoors, and around Portland, many people wear them outdoors in community spaces as well. Marinas and such are open, the rare launch service seems back. Clubs, however, do not seem to be welcoming guests.

However, all of this is in flux. The moment things spike again, you can expect a return to lock down.

 

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18 minutes ago, penumbra said:

We're in Maine - came up from Annapolis-ish since June, spent a month on LIS. MD was somewhat locked down at Memorial Day. Marinas were opening up for transients, but shore-side facilities etc were not. 

LIS was essentially closed in June. Clubs were not welcoming transients for moorings and from what I can tell, are still not. Shore-side facilities remain closed. 

RI seems relatively open, despite former quarantine rules. Friends have been in Narragansett and Block in the last two weeks and report things are back.

Maine is open. Restaurants are operating either reduced capacity or outdoors only. Masks required indoors, and around Portland, many people wear them outdoors in community spaces as well. Marinas and such are open, the rare launch service seems back. Clubs, however, do not seem to be welcoming guests.

However, all of this is in flux. The moment things spike again, you can expect a return to lock down.

 

You arrived in Maine a bit earlier than seems to be common.

How cold was it up there when you arrived? Did you still have strong winds to deal with? Northerlies?  Are you still in Portland or did you move further north?

Did you go through the Cape Cod Canal or did you sail the long way around?  Thirsting for knowledge, spill your story! :)

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Down here the virus has nothing to do with businesses being open or closed. It has to do with the government paying people 60 grand a year to sit home! 

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4 hours ago, Ajax said:

You arrived in Maine a bit earlier than seems to be common.

 How cold was it up there when you arrived? Did you still have strong winds to deal with? Northerlies?  Are you still in Portland or did you move further north?

Did you go through the Cape Cod Canal or did you sail the long way around?  Thirsting for knowledge, spill your story! :)

Our circumstance is slightly unique, perhaps. We are based around NYC and generally keep the boat moving - Chesapeake, LIS, Narragansett, etc. With school/camps canceled and not needing to turn up to offices, we struck a deal on a house outside Portland and a mooring in the harbor. We work from the house during the week and cruise on the weekends. 

We had a 35 hour, mostly motor, from WLIS to Portland. Breeze was the prevailing SW/S, when anything. We cut through Plum Gut and shot through the canal. Easy ride, if a bit boring. 

The weather has been great. The first week was sunny, mid 70s, since then a high in the mid 80s this past weekend, but mostly 70s. The bottom day time temp was mid 60s. Fog has definitely been inconvenient, but hasn't really killed anything. We had some issues with mussels growing inside the sail drive (fuck you, Volvo and your stupid intake design) that held us up for 4th of July weekend. Seems like we've got it resolved. We did a big lap of Casco Bay last weekend and had a blast.  Definitely a fair amount of rain, though all been during the week.

This is only our second time cruising Maine, so your mileage may vary. Water temps have been mid to upper 60s, which some have claimed high. A glance at historical indicates it's more average than not. 

 

 

 

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@penumbra  Wow, you've scored the social-distancing jackpot with the house and mooring.

Thanks for all the good gouge. I'm looking for "easy, if a bit boring" when I finally make this trip. I don't need excitement.  Water in my creek is a urine-warm, 85F degrees and you can walk across the nettles, they're so thick.

Glad to hear that Casco Bay is also good cruising in case I don't make it as far as Penobscot.

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7 hours ago, penumbra said:

We're in Maine - came up from Annapolis-ish since June, spent a month on LIS. MD was somewhat locked down at Memorial Day. Marinas were opening up for transients, but shore-side facilities etc were not. 

LIS was essentially closed in June. Clubs were not welcoming transients for moorings and from what I can tell, are still not. Shore-side facilities remain closed. 

RI seems relatively open, despite former quarantine rules. Friends have been in Narragansett and Block in the last two weeks and report things are back.

Maine is open. Restaurants are operating either reduced capacity or outdoors only. Masks required indoors, and around Portland, many people wear them outdoors in community spaces as well. Marinas and such are open, the rare launch service seems back. Clubs, however, do not seem to be welcoming guests.

However, all of this is in flux. The moment things spike again, you can expect a return to lock down.

 

I'm based in maine and I would echo this, we all are kind of waiting for the other shoe to fall however in terms of case numbers spiking and the state locking back down again. a great deal of our summer residents and visitors come from florida, draw whatever conclusions you like from that...

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So nobody got asked to provide or sign the certificate of compliance in Maine?  We weren't no judgement is implied or intended in that... just trying to out reality vs theory.  Even in Boston back in June when hotels were supposed to be closed we had zero issues finding a place to stay. 

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So I came up to Maine from Floriduh with a clear COVID test.  No one has asked to see it yet, but the compliance with masks, general honor system and thoughtfulness towards others in Maine is a stark contrast when compared to Floriduh. Many things are open, or at least partially open. I also imagine that could change in a heartbeat.  I have a lot of family in the area, so I'm being very careful.  Flying on the other hand was a huge disaster. Everything seems designed to speed the spread. Most people are playing by the rules but about 30% are ignorant or flouting the rules.

Our yacht club is open and taking mooring reservations. There are rules about masks on the docks and launch, and the launch is limited to one boat per trip and ....etc...

It's been a cool and foggy Summer.  The good part is many good anchorages are largely empty and there seems fewer pots. 

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@Wess  Dude, are you going? That would be so exciting...damn you, retired people!

Honestly, the whole chain of states that you could end up visiting currently have a solid grip on the virus. If you're going to go, now is the time.  Let's pretend for a moment, that something changes and travel bans start popping up. You know full well that you could stuff your cabin full of provisions and sail back to the Chesapeake without any trouble.

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I imagine that there would be less lobster traps with restaurants closed. A sailor’s delight now! 
 

I have shrimp, lobster and scallops delivered from a trawler once a week here in NJ. They sell to friends now instead of the local restaurants. Cheap too.

Our state highway signs request that out of state visitors call #511 to get quarantine status information. I’m not sure that anyone from Staten Island is going to come down here to the shore and quarantine in their beach house for 2weeks.

 

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Zero enforcement here in Western Penobscot Bay by local authorities. We hear of some local vigilante efforts through the grapevine. Our area has a huge majority favoring the simple mask in stores, space on the street to strangers, etc. Anybody that goes inside these places without a mask is likely to get an earful. 

 

But I see many of us (myself included) unable to avoid some infectable closeness with people we know, that have been here long term. But I think, so far, we are the good example of; you can't be 100% protected, but 80% (?) works well. 

 

Season 2020 is a good one to be on the water. There are very few boats out there and in popular anchorages. Plus fewer buoys because the lobster market is crashing due to low demand (restaurants cut back).

 

The ketch on the horizon, was about the only sail we saw on this 10 mile reach home. 

1571102786_PenobscotBayspring2020_.thumb.jpg.0e5eab7c2a435e5139665d350d0752c3.jpg

 

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It’s sad to say that I’m not even launching my cutter this season. I have other boats to sail, but I planned on doing the New England races this summer

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RI is open but the pita of travel has changed the demographics of visitors to mostly day-trippers from nearby. NY, NJ, FL part time residents starting to show up. COVID status about stable but signs not promising with shitty risk abating compliance by the hordes. 
 

Newport has turned into a trash-ridden post apocalyptic shithole downtown and the prudent mariner will pass on by and hit Bristol or maybe Dutch Harbor or Wickford if you must stop in R.I.  

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On 7/13/2020 at 7:44 AM, GH41 said:

Down here the virus has nothing to do with businesses being open or closed. It has to do with the government paying people 60 grand a year to sit home! 

cv19.jpg.7d2583520054d001c84ce0c6a569ee73.jpg

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20 hours ago, Ajax said:

@penumbra  Wow, you've scored the social-distancing jackpot with the house and mooring.

Thanks for all the good gouge. I'm looking for "easy, if a bit boring" when I finally make this trip. I don't need excitement.  Water in my creek is a urine-warm, 85F degrees and you can walk across the nettles, they're so thick.

Glad to hear that Casco Bay is also good cruising in case I don't make it as far as Penobscot.

Not retired Ajax.  But this summer might be our last chance to cruise with the "kid" (doing graduate work up in Boston) before the Navy owns her for 6 years of ROM on a sub LOL.

On 7/13/2020 at 9:44 AM, GH41 said:

Down here the virus has nothing to do with businesses being open or closed. It has to do with the government paying people 60 grand a year to sit home! 

 

1 hour ago, Diarmuid said:

cv19.jpg.7d2583520054d001c84ce0c6a569ee73.jpg

Hey GH41 and Diamuid, can't you folks take the politics somewhere else.  Some of us are sick of getting lectured by both sides and just want to enjoy the time we can eak out on the water with people we love.  And oddly enough we can decide for ourselves if we want to take whatever risk we are taking.  This ain't about what you think is right or wrong.  Its simply about the reality on the ground of how covid rules are or are not being implemented for cruisers.

For everyone else thanks for sharing your experiences.  For us, from FL to Maine,  there were zero issues and everyone was welcomed so long as they had cash and a mask (in some places).  I didn't know if we got lucky with where we stopped or the timing or what.

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23 minutes ago, Wess said:

Not retired Ajax.  But this summer might be our last chance to cruise with the "kid" (doing graduate work up in Boston) before the Navy owns her for 6 years of ROM on a sub LOL.

 

Hey GH41 and Diamuid, can't you folks take the politics somewhere else.  Some of us are sick of getting lectured by both sides and just want to enjoy the time we can eak out on the water with people we love.  And oddly enough we can decide for ourselves if we want to take whatever risk we are taking.  This ain't about what you think is right or wrong.  Its simply about the reality on the ground of how covid rules are or are not being implemented for cruisers.

For everyone else thanks for sharing your experiences.  For us, from FL to Maine,  there were zero issues and everyone was welcomed so long as they had cash and a mask (in some places).  I didn't know if we got lucky with where we stopped or the timing or what.

It’s not politics, and it’s not all about you. Everything you chose to do, or chose not to do, impacts the lives and exposure of others.

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5 hours ago, Kris Cringle said:

Zero enforcement here in Western Penobscot Bay by local authorities. We hear of some local vigilante efforts through the grapevine. Our area has a huge majority favoring the simple mask in stores, space on the street to strangers, etc. Anybody that goes inside these places without a mask is likely to get an earful. 

 

But I see many of us (myself included) unable to avoid some infectable closeness with people we know, that have been here long term. But I think, so far, we are the good example of; you can't be 100% protected, but 80% (?) works well. 

 

Season 2020 is a good one to be on the water. There are very few boats out there and in popular anchorages. Plus fewer buoys because the lobster market is crashing due to low demand (restaurants cut back).

 

The ketch on the horizon, was about the only sail we saw on this 10 mile reach home. 

1571102786_PenobscotBayspring2020_.thumb.jpg.0e5eab7c2a435e5139665d350d0752c3.jpg

 

Thank you.  Very helpful.

 

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On 7/13/2020 at 9:11 AM, Wess said:

Is anyone out cruising the NE states and what are you encountering in terms of practical implementation and reality of the covid rules being applied?

Eastern Long Island Sound:

Haven’t been to Block Island yet but I hear it’s packed and as much of a zoo as ever.
 

We anchored in West Harbor, Fishers Island, took the dinghy to FIYC and was stopped on the dock. “Where did you come from, where are you going?”  It was a pleasant conversation. They let the dog do her business and I bought some ice. FIYC Rules: mask on 100% of the time, you can’t leave the club grounds and cannot use or enter club facilities. 

We went to Montauk for the 4th and had no issues getting ashore. Mask usage seemed 50/50. 

Most marinas here in SECT are pretty lax on rules.  People are respecting mask rules and social distancing on their own. 

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Newport has turned into a trash-ridden post apocalyptic shithole downtown and the prudent mariner will pass on by and hit Bristol or maybe Dutch Harbor or Wickford if you must stop in R.I.  

 
 
Huh?    Go there twice a week from CT  ,  love  Newport.       What have you seen to post that?
 
 

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Newport-based, been cruising locally around RI.  In general, RI is not as busy as usual, but everything is open:

1) Newport onshore is busy but not as busy as most summers.  Note many clubs are still pretty tightly members-only, but Oldport launches are running normally now.  I heard from Oldport that they did not sell out transient moorings even on July 4th weekend.  There has been space in the anchorage.

2) Other RI ports are light.  You should be able to find a mooring or anchorage anywhere.

3) Block Island on July 4th was PACKED.  Lots of powerboat raft-ups, many sporting a number of banners including those supporting our current president.  It felt like a bunch of CT and Long Island folks busting out to celebrate the relative 'freedom' of the Great Salt Pond.  That said, the Oar had plenty of tables spaced widely on their lawn, and the mudslides were as good as ever.  I would probably avoid it on weekends but happily go there during the week.

(Confidential to penumbra: Ahoy!)

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A week ago, I sailed into Newport, Block, Mystic and Sag Harbor.  I confirm what others have said.  Apart from less crowds and a requirement to wear a mask, all seems pretty open.  Sailed Wednesday  to Pilot’s Point from Newport.  The Marina’s in Westbrook and everywhere I’ve been are full. 

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On 7/13/2020 at 6:44 AM, GH41 said:

Down here the virus has nothing to do with businesses being open or closed. It has to do with the government paying people 60 grand a year to sit home! 

Fuck yea!

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We're currently cruising in Maine. Last night in Frenchboro, tonight in Northeast Harbor. We were concerned going to Frenchboro as we are "from away" coming to a remote community, but everyone was incredibly welcoming. Everyone there seems just delighted to see visitors and new faces, and folks to buy their wonderful blueberry pies (at $40 a pop) from Lunt (worth every penny).  [BTW, We were tested immediately before leaving Mass to come up here.]

That said, it is sad to see so many empty moorings, so many lobster boats not working, and -- I never thought I would say this --- so many fewer lobster pots.

The overwhelming feeling for us is just how incredibly fortunate we are to be doing this.

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On 7/14/2020 at 8:19 AM, Sail4beer said:

I imagine that there would be less lobster traps with restaurants closed. A sailor’s delight now! 
 

I have shrimp, lobster and scallops delivered from a trawler once a week here in NJ. They sell to friends now instead of the local restaurants. Cheap too.

Our state highway signs request that out of state visitors call #511 to get quarantine status information. I’m not sure that anyone from Staten Island is going to come down here to the shore and quarantine in their beach house for 2weeks.

 

There were few lobster bouys here in MidCoast Maine until about 2 weeks ago. The market for lobsters is weak. But now there are as many out there as I have ever seen. Looked like a candy dish out there today.

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Whoa. Makes sense though. The island is tiny, resources are limited.

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Was heading there Fri. Damn. Not now...

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Some experiences from cruising this year:
Cutty was COVID careful, lots of masks, some shore-side dining open. Sad news this week with their first case. 
Hyannis was a cesspit, no masks to be seen, lots of "IDGAF"  - shame.
PTown I've been to 3 times so far this year - strict rules, everybody compliant & careful, plenty of shore-side dining open. Flyers and the Marina both operational. 
Gloucester (start of season) was quiet, harbormaster moorings and launch operational, shoreside dining available. 
Boston (home port) all marinas welcoming transients, business mostly as usual. 

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On 7/18/2020 at 9:11 PM, Sweare Deep said:

 [BTW, We were tested immediately before leaving Mass to come up here.] 

Thank you for doing that, you are wiser than many!

Not cruising related, but as an example of how seriously Maine is taking the non quarantining violators, our friend just heard from her daughter down in Mass. The daughter and her BF drove up and spent 4 days doing the Maine tourist thing before driving home. A week later they received a citation for $200 or $300 (CRS) from the Maine Turnpike Authority for violating the 2 week quarantine which was mandated for Mass visitors that didn't specifically stop and show proof of testing or prior quarantining.

They were caught by the EZ Pass system at the Turnpike toll booths. I imagine if the yachting traffic begins to pick up the Coasties may start checking transients, especially if our counts start ticking up.

 

 

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Would not surprise me and no judgement intended on the approach but very much doubt that is really true simply because if it was, we would have been ticketed and fined many times by Maine and few other states. 

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15 hours ago, Wess said:

Would not surprise me and no judgement intended on the approach but very much doubt that is really true simply because if it was, we would have been ticketed and fined many times by Maine and few other states. 

It's the first I've heard of it but I'd tell friends to avoid the Easypass lane if warranted. :)

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16 hours ago, Wess said:

Would not surprise me and no judgement intended on the approach but very much doubt that is really true simply because if it was, we would have been ticketed and fined many times by Maine and few other states. 

If it isn't true, it should be. I'll admit, it was a dogpark story my wife came home with that I chose to relate as first hand because I accepted it as fact. MY bad and I apologize.

If it's not actual policy, it sure seems like a missed opportunity for some degree of enforcement for not too much money.

That said, why don't you mail in your fine anyhow Wess, since you admit to violating our visitation rules?

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Hey @Willin' -  I am for abolishing most all forms of government not sending them money but lets keep that in PA and out of SA LOL.  To be clear I am not sure we violated anything.  In the case of Maine we talked to marina staff each occasion about what we were (planning on and then) doing and what was the norm for the area and took their counsel.  If Maine tickets folks based on car license from toll and time north and southbound less than 14 days (and presumably over some minimum as so not a drive through), we should have multiple fines and tickets and don't.  But realistically I would think any good lawyer could easily fight and win against such an approach as there are many holes in that.

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We were asked for a certificate of compliance by Lyman-Morse in Camden where we docked for Camden-Brooklin. They were going to ask us to fill one out, but we already had one aboard as we had quarantined aboard for 2-1/2 weeks. They never returned the form.

Only time we were asked. 

BBY did a great job, I mean GREAT job, provisioning the boat for our cruise. The shopper was actually the daughter of one of the project managers. We just gave general instructions for wine selection, and her picks were excellent. Everything was stowed right where we wanted it and goods in the fridge were hard frozen.

The sailing was terrific, nice sailing breezes, very little motoring. The only real thickets of pots were in the usual places - Merchants Row, SE entrance to the Reach, we didn't bother with Western Way as we were avoiding towns in favor of quiet spots. 

Back to Tejas for a few weeks, then we'll be back to quarantine again. BBY has offered to provision us again. Q-Tine or not, it's a great service.

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We just got back from a week out: Portland, Mitinicus, Isle au Haute, Blue Hill (YC was super accomodating, can't say enough positive there), Castine, Tenants Harbor, Linekin Bay and back. Launches were operating at the couple places that had them. Masks required. We were not asked for any paperwork (Newport hailing port). 

We ate all but one or two meals on the boat. Overall, exactly as I expected: most things open, masks prevalent. The only surprise was many places posted they weren't accepting trash. One location had a flyer with that clearly stated this as part of the rules, but when asked, it was rather that staff would not handle trash. You were welcome to take the short walk to the dumpster while fueling, etc.

The RI situation is super annoying as we're headed south in few weeks. The possibility of a cocktail on the hill in NPT or mud slide at the Oar sounded tempting. 

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Thinking of sailing directly to Provincetown MA from Camden ME and then to Pilot’s Point CT. 
 

Any news on restrictions?
 

 

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Appreciate the continued comments here. The window for our summer cruise closed due to work commitments but still thinking about the prospects for the Fall. Sadly without the Mid-kid. 

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On 8/11/2020 at 12:47 PM, Student_Driver said:

Thinking of sailing directly to Provincetown MA from Camden ME and then to Pilot’s Point CT. 
 

Any news on restrictions?
 

 

P-Town Marina charges $2/ft for moorings. Anchoring bottom is excellent, holding is great, it's free.

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1 hour ago, Cruisin Loser said:

P-Town Marina charges $2/ft for moorings. Anchoring bottom is excellent, holding is great, it's free.

Make that $3/ft (and $4/ft on holidays.) Plus two night minimum on weekends.

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5 minutes ago, Sweare Deep said:

Make that $3/ft (and $4/ft on holidays.) Plus two night minimum on weekends.

Holy Shit!!!!!

 

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