Indeed the Beatles were successful in putting words to the feelings that one gets in fascinating Rishikesh.  The emerald green water, the equally green hills and the shimmering white sand… I thought only Goa could spur such magic…But I was completely wrong.

“Bungee Jumping! Cliff Jumping! Rock Climbing! Fox Flying! Rappelling!” I could hear these words off and on in the office; in hushed voices most of us were planning on what we were going to try other than white water rafting. Our office trip was scheduled for April 15th, the third weekend of the month and may I say that it is one of the best months to go rafting in Rishikesh, when water temperature is moderate (still cold) and the weather is neither too hot nor too cold; other than that for best rafting experience one can either go in the months of March to May or between October and November.

Oye it’s Friday… Weekend Fun Begins Now!

After finishing office on Friday, we planned on leaving for Rishikesh. Our cab from New Delhi to Rishikesh was scheduled for Haridwar at 11.45 PM.

Rishikesh is an ideal weekend getaway from Delhi the place leaves you completely rejuvenated, and helps you conquer your fears and fulfill all your adventure fantasies. So, the best tip for a Rishikesh tour is to leave on Friday evening, reach Rishikesh on Saturday via Haridwar (Har Ki Paudi), enjoy the rafting and other adventure activities and then return on Sunday. You are guaranteed to start the new week with a fresh mind and lot of enthusiasm.

Journey to Haridwar…

The four-five hours journey to Haridwar left us with little scope for sleep, so we decided on taking pictures, chatting and Playing Antakshari…We managed to get some sleep and being right on schedule we reached Haridwar at 5AM, Cool air had started to cast its spell on us, and we craved for tea and a pair of uppers as well. Haridwar welcomed us with sugary tea and…beckoning a sweet start to a spicy journey!

After bathed at Har ki paudi we feel fresh and more energetic for our adventures destination!

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Rishikesh Calling…

Rishikesh is about 20-25 kms from Haridwar. The dark sky hindered the view, however, and the cool breeze was telling us that we were heading closer to the hills. Our 45 minutes journey was definitely a delight, especially for Yatharth who was sitting on the middle sheet with his…Rohit with his usual cheerful spirit and clown like acts entertained us all through our way.

We ran and cut through the meandering alleys of Rishikesh, which were almost empty at the moment with few small dhabas and restaurants open. The first glimpse of River Ganga stunned us…WOW! Was all I could say… I am certainly not a morning person, but if every morning would allow me to get such a spectacular view, I might just stop sleeping at all…LOL. The emerald green river accompanied by lofty mountains takes its usual walk. The pebbled path, along the river added to its beauty. I finally dared to soak my feet in the water, Gosh! there was nothing that I can compare the feeling with. Just like the Beatles said it…

“I’m just a child of nature, I don’t need much to set me free”

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River Rafting Camp… Sun, Sand and Beach!

The view of the camp from the trail was spectacular, I mean it was something that I hadn’t seen before because most of us, this was our first camping experience. An array of tents on the white sands overlooking the gorgeous green Ganga… now I know, what is BREATHTAKING! The set of stairs were utterly dangerous, however the view and the excitement to reach such a beautiful location made us forget all hassles. So, here we were, stepping on the white sands, walking in the sun, greeted by the other group from Delhi. The camp was beautiful, the location was beautiful and the ambiance was even more beautiful, Paradise Unparalleled!

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Beach Fun … Tan TanTan!

After changing clothes and having a refreshing breakfast, everyone started to splash in to the water… followed by screams… uhhhhhuhuhu…the water was DAMN cold and the sun was merciless. Abhishek was now a Superman Redefined!! Anyways, I don’t want to go into the details of this…let me give you few tips on essentials of camping in Rishikesh…

If you are planning to go to Rishikesh and staying in a camp, here are few things that you must carry, first, a sunscreen (of course if you don’t want to get tanned as you are going to spend an entire day in the sun), sun glasses, portable mobile charger (although, few camps provide these), flashlight and lip balm (as the dry air gives you a lip-crack!)

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Beach, Bonfire and Buddies!

In the evening, The camp was dimly lit with two bonfires, one was for us and the other for another group from Delhi. The other group was drinking, singing and lighting up … what a beautiful view it was!

After changing clothes, we circled around the bonfire, sharing experiences and laughter with…. The night had started to become cold and we could hear the sound of the river. The multitude of stars was shining brightly, a rare sight that we don’t get to see in cities…

After exhausting ourselves in water with body surfing and kayaking, we headed for a sumptuous buffet. There was no greater feeling than sitting under a shed and munching on some delectable Indian cuisine with….while we chatted, played Antakashari and laughed crazily.

At 3 AM, we were finally go for sleep because next day morning we have to go for raf..f…f…f..ting.

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River Rafting… Facing Life

We reached at Marine Drive through our SUV, from where we had to start our 24kms rafting expedition. There are four major stretches for rafting in Rishikesh, Brahmpuri (9kms stretch for family and beginners), Shivpuri (16kms stretch for youngsters), Marine Drive (24kms stretch for daredevils) and Kaudiyala (36kms stretch for experts). Our rafting expedition was from Marine Drive to N.I.M Beach with 4 major rapids (grade III+) namely, Money Maker, Three Blind Mice, Club House and  Roller Coaster.

we all geared up for the final adventure… River Rafting in Rishikesh!!!

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By now, the sun started to go down, with patches of light here and there on the river and mountains. Cold breeze welcomed us on the raft, and everyone was ready with essential rafting gears like helmet, lifeguard and paddle. I on the other hand was given the privilege of only sitting with the rope to control, NO ROWING!  That sounded nice, we started with some gentle rowing, laughter and smiles…The first rapid was a mild one…the best was about to come! I could hear the sound of the second rapid and it seemed dangerous, our guide instructed that we need to row together and faster when we reach the rapid…that was alarming… We finally faced the second rapid that gave us the taste of extreme adventure; the front of the raft dived in to the river, with Amit, Rohit and I literally drinking the water of Ganga with both mouth and nose…BIZZARE! We were out of the rapid and were alive! On the third major rapid the raft completely turned towards the right, I once thought that Amit might fall off, but he survived, he was rowing hard, with his eyes closed, which made me laugh…he was doing everything he could to survive in this particular rapid. By the fourth rapid named Roller Coaster, which was the longest, everyone was a bit tired but DAMN the monster rapid put everyone in an alert position, Abhishek again rowing with closed eyes and Rohit waiting for the tide to come to him, as he didn’t want to row in the air and after all he is the captain of the raft..”Captain Jack Sparrow”…LOL! I felt someone was throwing bucketful of water on me, the warm weather and cold water made for a strange combination. It was at least 10 minutes of fast rowing that pulled us out of the gigantic rapid…the quite water followed with few minor rapids to N.I.M Beach…We had just faced death and lived a life!!

 

The best part is to experience Cliff jumping in between of rafting, cliff-jumping point is towards the end of the rafting route and is also called the “Maggi Point” where we were enjoy tasty Maggie after the faadu.. jump.

 

By the time we finished our rafting adventure, it had got dark. Drenched, tired and cold, now we desperately wanted to return Delhi. We managed to reach Delhi without breaking any of our bones and teeth.

I was in love with Rishikesh, not love at first sight, but love that has grown and multiplied in the course of time, love that may become unconditional someday…

You have received an email from a person with whom you have never interacted earlier and thus, before you take the conversation forward, you would like to do some research on the Internet to know more about that person. How do you do this without directly asking the other person?

Google is the most obvious place for performing reverse email lookups (just Google for the email address) but if that person doesn’t have a website or if they have never used their email address on public forums, Google will be of little help.

No worries. If you only know the email address of a person and nothing more, here are some ways that may help you uncover the identity of that unknown email sender.

How to do Reverse Email Search

#1. Find the sender’s location

Location of Email Sender

Open the header of the email message and look for lines that say “Received: from” and are followed by an IP address in square brackets. If there are multiple entries, use the IP address mentioned in the last entry.

Now paste the IP address in this trace route tool and you should get a fairly good idea about the approximate location of the email sender.

#2. Reverse email search with Facebook

Facebook has a billion users and the likelihood is therefore high that the sender may also have a profile on Facebook.

Unlike LinkedIn and most other social networks, Facebook lets you search users by email address so that should make your job simpler. Just paste the email address of the person into the search box and Facebook will instantly tell you if a profile exists with that email address or not.

If you are able to locate that person on Facebook, download the profile picture and then upload it to Google Images (click the camera icon in the search box). This acts as a reverse image search engine so you can locate his other social profiles where he may have used the same picture.

#3. Check all the other Social Networks

You can use a service like Knowem to quickly determine if a profile with a particular username exists in any of the social networks.

If the email address of the sender is something like green_peas@hotmail.com, there’s a probability that he or she may have created accounts of some other social network using the same alias “green_peas” – put that in knowem.com to confirm.

Gmail users can install the Rapportive add-on and find the Twitter and LinkedIn profiles associated with an email address, if any of them exist. For details, see this tutorial on how to guess someone’s email address.

#4. People Search

Reverse Email Search

Finally, if none of the above tricks work, you should try a people search service like Pipl and Spokeo – both services let you perform reverse email lookups but Spokeo has a more comprehensive database than Pipl.

Other than regular web documents, Spoke also scans social networks and even the who is information of domain names to find any bit of information associated with an email address. However, some of the results returned by Spokeo are only available to subscribers.

Virender Sehwag’s retirement from international cricket also brought the curtain down on a glorious chapter in Indian cricket.

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In the history of game, Virender Sehwag will be remembered as one of the most impactful batsmen of all time.

Thoughts from the cricket world on one of the most fearless batsmen the game has seen.

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“I have to learn from Sehwag how to play in the nervous 90’s”

->Sachin tendulkar

“No matter how good and experienced you are, he can kill your attitude”

->Brett Lee

“Sehwag is the most unpredictable batsman i have ever seen in my career”

->Glenn Mcgrath

“Having scored 298 and still hitting a six is something unimaginable and you need to be a genius for that”

->Waqar Younis

“I would always have Sehwag in my team. I want to watch him bat but not bowl to him hahaha”

->Shane warne

“When Viv Richards retired I thought it was end of entertainment. But then came Sehwag, the King of entertainment!”

->Ramiz Raja

“If he is in the field for more than 10 overs, i am sure the bowlers are going to have a tough time”

->K Srikanth

“The baller might be good but when Sehwag thinks he wants to hit, God forbid anyone standing in the way.”

->L. Shivaramakrishn

“A batsman like Sehwag is never out of form”

->M Hussey

“Players like Sehwag bring crowd back to test cricket”

->Kapil Dev

“No one can maximise the first 10 overs better than Sehwag”

->Rahul Dravid

“Sehwag is a miracle, Sehwag is an institution”

->Navjot singh sidhu

“Will go miles to see sehwag bat”

->Sourav ganguly & Arun lal

“I say it again! I never saw Sir Viv bat but I’ve seen Sehwag bat!

->Yuvaraj Singh

“Sehwag achieves his Landmarks because he Doesn’t Worry about Achieving them”

->Commentator Harsha Bhogle

“If there is a Sinatra in cricket, it’s Virender Sehwag”

->Ravi Shastri

“Didn’t see Viv Richards bat in person but I can proudly say I have witnessed Virender Sehwag tearing apart the best bowling attacks”

->MS Dhoni

Overview of some of the most useful Google search tricks, from basic tips to new features just recently released.

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1. Use quotes to search for an exact phrase.

This one’s a well-known, simple trick: searching a phrase in quotes will yield only pages with the same words in the same order as what’s in the quotes. It’s one of the most vital search tips, especially useful if you’re trying to find results containing a specific a phrase.

2. Use an asterisk within quotes to specify unknown or variable words.

Here’s a lesser known trick: searching a phrase in quotes with an asterisk replacing a word will search all variations of that phrase. It’s helpful if you’re trying to determine a song from its lyrics, but you couldn’t make out the entire phrase (e.g. “imagine all the * living for today”), or if you’re trying to find all forms of an expression (e.g. “* is thicker than water”).

3. Use the minus sign to eliminate results containing certain words.

You’ll want to eliminate results with certain words if you’re trying to search for a term that’s generating a lot of results that aren’t of interest to you. Figure out what terms you’re not interested in (e.g. jaguar -car) and re-run the search.

4. Search websites for keywords.

Think of the “site:” function as a Google search that searches only a particular website. If you want to see every time TIME.com mentioned Google, use the search “Google site:TIME.com”.

5. Search news archives going back to the mid-1880s.

Google News has an option to search over 100 years’ worth of archived news from newspapers around the world.

6. Compare foods using “vs.”

Can’t decide between a burger or pizza for dinner? Type in “rice vs. quinoa,” for example, and you’ll receive side-by-side comparisons of the nutritional facts.

Google Search Tips Tricks
Courtesy of Google

7. Filter search results for recipes.

If you search your favorite food, and then click “Search Tools” right under the search bar, you’ll be able to filter recipes based on ingredients, cook time and calories. It’s the perfect tool if you have certain dietary restrictions.

8. Use “DEFINE:” to learn the meaning of words—slang included.

Streamline the dictionary process by using, for example, “DEFINE: mortgage.” For words that appear in the dictionary, you’ll be able to see etymology and a graph of its use over time alongside the definition. Google will even sift the web to define slang words or acronyms. Try out “DEFINE: bae” or “DEFINE: SMH”.

9. Tilt your screen by searching “tilt.”

This is one of the fun additions built in by Google engineers. Try it out yourself (search without quotes).

10. Play Atari Breakout by searching it on Google Images.

The legendary brick breaker game is available for easy access on Google. Just search “Atari Breakout” (without quotes) on Google Images and enjoy.

11. Search images using images.

Ever come across a photo that looks strangely familiar? Or if you want to know where it came from? If you save the image, and then search it on Google Images (with the camera button), you’ll be able to see similar images on the web.

12. Press the mic icon on Google’s search bar, and say “flip a coin” or “heads or tails.”

The feature released last month lets Google flip a coin for you when you don’t have one on hand.

Courtesy of Google

13. Press the mic icon on Google’s search bar, and say “give me a love quote” or “I love you.”

The love quote generator is also a feature released last month for those in need of a little romance.

Here are 10 important links that every Google user should know about. They are tucked away, somewhere deep inside your Google Account dashboard, and they may reveal interesting details about you that are known to Google. Let’s get started.

1. Create a new Google Account using your existing email address. The regular sign-up process uses your @gmail.com address as your Google account username but with this special URL, you can use any other email address as your username.

https://accounts.google.com/SignUpWithoutGmail

2. Google creates a profile of yourself based on the sites you visit, your Google+ account and other signals. They try to guess your age, gender and interests and then use this data to serve you more relevant ads. Use this URL to know how Google sees you on the web.

https://www.google.com/ads/preferences/

Also see: Secret URLs for Google Drive & Google Docs

3. Google lets you export all your data out of the Google ecosystem. You can download your photos, contacts, Gmail messages and even your YouTube videos. Head over the the Takeout page to grab the download links.

https://www.google.com/takeout

4. If you ever find your content appearing on another website that is using one or more Google products – say Blogger, AdSense, Google+ or YouTube – you can raise a DMCA complaint with Google against that site to get that content removed. This wizard can also be used to remove websites from Google search results that are scraping your content.

https://support.google.com/legal

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5. Your Android device may be reporting your recent location data and velocity (are you moving and if yes, how fast are you moving) back to Google servers. Head over to the Google Maps website to see your entire location history and you also have the option to export this data as KML files that can be viewed inside Google Earth or even Google Drive.

https://maps.google.com/locationhistory

6. Google records every search term that you’ve ever typed into their search boxes. They even keep a log of every Google ad that you have clicked on various websites and if you are a Google Now user, you can also see a log of all your audio search queries. OK Google.

https://history.google.com
https://history.google.com/history/audio

7. You need to login to your Gmail account at least once every 9 months else Google may terminate your account according to their program policies. This can be an issue if you have multiple Gmail accounts so as a workaround, you can setup your main Gmail account as the trusted content for your secondary accounts. Thus Google will keep sending you reminders every few months to login to your other accounts. Not available for Google Apps.

https://www.google.com/settings/account/inactive

8. Worried that someone else is using your Google account. Go to the activity report to see a log of every device that has recently been used to log into your Google account. You also get to know the I.P. Address and their approximate geographic location. Unfortunately, you can’t remotely log out of a Google session.

https://security.google.com/settings/security/activity

9. This is a complete list of web apps, browser extensions, Google Scripts and mobile apps that have any read or write access to your Google data. If the permission level says “access to basic account info”, it basically means that you have used your Google account to sign-in to that app.

https://security.google.com/settings/security/permissions

10. This is important URL for Google Apps users. If your Google Account ever gets hacked, use this secret link to reset your admin password. You’ll be asked to verify your domain name by creating a CNAME record in your DNS.

https://admin.google.com/domain.com/VerifyAdminAccountPasswordReset [*] Replace domain.com in the above URL with your own web domain name.

Reasons why those simple school friendships have the deepest meanings.

1. You were friends before you even knew what the word ‘friend’ meant.

2. They wingmanned you through everything from punishments to crushes, surprise tests to homework.

3. After spending the entire day at school together, you still spoke to them on the phone.

4. They loved you and stood by you even before you attained success in life or at least showed promise for it.

5. School friendships were, still are and will always remain the most uncomplicated, unconditional and endearing friendships.

 

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6. They selflessly shared everything with you; from assignments and secrets, down to even a single toffee!

7. They are the reason why you never get bored of Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikendar and Hip Hip Hurray.

8. They set the standard for friendships for the rest of your life.

9. You didn’t need to speak to talk; like the time when the teacher asked you to choose a partner, you just looked at one another.

10. And lastly, the joys of the ‘last bench’ would never have been discovered without them.

 

School days can’t last forever. One day they must end. But school friendships last a lifetime.

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IN THE days since May 16th when Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) stormed to victory in India’s general election much commentary has wrestled with the idea of history. Most commentators seem to agree that May 2014 marks an historic moment. One reason is the scale of Mr Modi’s landslide victory, which scooped up 282 seats for the BJP and thus an absolute majority in parliament. That is first time since 1984 that any party has won a majority for itself. It is also the first time ever that a party other than Congress has done so. Conversely, the defeat for Congress is far worse than anything in its long history of dominating Indian politics: it won fewer than a sixth the seats of its rival, getting just 44. In much of north India, the political heartland, Congress was wiped out. Some correctly ask if its eventual recovery (assuming that will happen one day) would require being rid of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty that has been at its heart for so long.

Yet the size of Mr Modi’s victory, and Congress’s defeat, tells only part of the dramatic story. The immense dissatisfaction with Congress was undeniable. Voters were unhappy with high inflation, slowing growth, weak leadership, corruption and much more. Such voter grumpiness, usually summed up as “anti-incumbency”, is all but inevitable for a party that had been in power for a decade. Yet more has happened here. Take, for example, the utter defeat of the Bahujan Samaj Party of Mayawati, the Dalit leader in Uttar Pradesh. She was not an incumbent and her party managed to collect some 20% of the votes cast in the state. Indeed, after the BJP and Congress, it got the most votes nationally of any party in the election. Yet it failed to win a single constituency. By contrast the BJP not only collected a huge tally of votes but also turned those efficiently into seats. With 31% of the national vote-share, they captured nearly 52% of the seats in parliament.

That suggests an important shift in Indian politics. The BJP did extraordinarily well because it approached the election in a far more professional, strategic and efficient way than its rivals. The methods it employed were modern, and the skill at which Mr Modi and his fellow leaders conducted their campaigns rivalled the sort of performances put in by American presidential contenders (and with similar quantities of money to spend). Rahul Gandhi of Congress, in the end, proved to be a hopeless amateur, poorly advised without even decent media-management skills or the ability to present a strong campaign message. Many regional figures proved similarly out of date in their campaigning. The BJP’s roadshows and rallies, the door-knocking by volunteers, the influence on India’s press and television channels, the ability to set the agenda of discussion, all went to making the election a remarkably one-sided affair. The chief minister of Bihar, Nitish Kumar, tendered his resignation on May 17th, after his party was flattened by the BJP in the state. (Assam’s chief minister, from Congress, has also offered to quit.) That was not because of anti-incumbency—voters in Bihar are happy with the work Mr Kumar has been doing—but because the BJP’s campaign was vastly superior.

Mr Modi in his first speeches after his victory has sounded magnanimous and made the right noises about running the country for all, bringing everyone along. He also mentioned, only partly accurately, that the BJP’s success transcended caste politics and religious appeals. If that were entirely true, it would be another reason to call this election result historic. In fact the BJP did make some use of caste and religion, as when Mr Modi played up his “other backward classes” background while campaigning in Uttar Pradesh, or when he criticized Bangladeshi (read: Muslim) infiltrators in Assam and West Bengal. It is troubling, too, that the new parliament will have the fewest Muslim members of any since 1952, while the ruling BJP has not a single Muslim MP among its cohort of 282; Muslims are reckoned to comprise at least 14% of the Indian population.

But largely Mr Modi told the truth: the BJP’s manifesto and Mr Modi’s speeches emphasised economic and development matters. The victory he achieved is more the result of his talk of strong government and improvements to the material lives of voters than anything else. That is encouraging. It suggests that he will now seek to govern in a way that encourages economic growth, job creation and better infrastructure, along with further reductions in poverty and inflation. Mr Modi has been dropping strong hints that he hopes to remain in power not only for the current five-year term, but to win re-election and reshape India’s economy and political landscape. In other words, he is considering his long-term prospects by keeping in mind the rise of a powerful new constituency that will only gather more influence as the years pass: the young, urban, educated and impatient set of voters who aspire for material gains to their lives. We argued before that such voters, for whom there is only “one God, that is GDP”, will increasingly decide the outcome of Indian elections. Mr Modi and the BJP look set to corner their support.

What comes next? On May 20th the BJP will meet, apparently to elect Mr Modi formally as their leader. That, apparently, is a precursor to the formation of a government which is going to include the immediate allies of the party that make up the National Democratic Alliance. It could, too, be made from of a wider coalition, since the BJP—if it is to push through legislative changes quickly—will need additional help from other parties that control powerful states, and to win more support in the upper house of parliament.

Unease persists about the role of the Hindu-nationalist right, whose footsoldiers undoubtedly helped a great deal in getting BJP candidates elected. With Mr Modi having been an activist member in the right-wing Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) since he was a boy, some on the right have expectations that he will pursue an agenda of Hindutva (for example getting a temple erected in Ayodhya, or changing the constitutional status of Muslim-majority Kashmir). Others look for evidence that nationalism of a protectionist variety will have a strong influence on Mr Modi’s policies. For example over the weekend BJP spokesmen have been saying that the party still intends to reverse an existing policy that would allow foreign investors to open supermarkets in larger cities, and even then only under limited circumstances.

Mr Modi would be wiser to downplay the influence of both sorts of nationalists. To sustain confidence that he can get the economy growing faster will require pulling off some difficult feats, not least attracting more foreign capital into a host of industries which could include insurance, banking, defence and many parts of infrastructure. He needs to send a clear message, as he picks ministers and begins to offer policy, that India aspires to become strong on the back of economic growth, more international trade, deeper global engagement—and not by promoting nationalist tendencies at home. He has a decent record of reaching out to other countries, notably Japan, in his time as chief minister of Gujarat. Since his victory on May 16th he has fielded calls from Barack Obama, David Cameron and a host of other global well-wishers eager to engage India internationally. Mr Obama for example made clear that India’s prime minister would be welcome to visit the United States. The Americans in particular want a decisive break from an earlier period, when interaction with Mr Modi concerned his record in handling communal violence in his state in 2002. Mr Modi in other words, by winning so emphatically on May 16th, appears both to have made history and escaped it. That is no mean feat at all.