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Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Telepizza - 4 locations in Krakow

Dear friends,

Today I will tell you about a franchise that you can find in Poland - Telepizza. Telepizza is an international network of pizzerias, specializing in pizza delivery to homes and offices. With many years of international experience and supported by central structures and targeted investments, Telepizza achieved in the Polish region a very strong position. A total of 121 units have already been opened in Poland, of which half are residential franchise operators; Polish branch Telepizza also has two logistics centers - production (Central & South Poland) and employs 2.5 thousand employees!
Krakow has 4 Telepizza locations. The one on ulica Rusznikarska 14 is the closest to our new apartment so I will tell you about that location :) Marek was in a mood for pizza for a long while so I wanted to surprise him last week. It was actually a Wednesday, just like today! and one of my friends from work recommened me this place when I asked her of a good pizza place next to where I live. 
We did not eat in, but I asked for a take-out and the pizza I asked was ready in about 15 minutes. For a large pizza, with the garlic sauce and the tomatoe juice I payed 30 zloty so it was not that bad :) The place is between the blocks so it does not have a street view but while I was there I could see quite a rush and there were constant take-out orders via the phone. The pizzeria looked deserted but I blame that for being the middle of the week and around 4:30 PM - when people are usually at work! I believe that inside you can fit around 20 to 30 people at the tables.
The place smelled nice and the lady that took my order was kind enough even to try speaking in English :) They still had the Christmas decorations in, and I liked that! I love people who leave the Christmas decorations up longer... somehow it feels like keeping the Christmas spirit alive! though the bowl with the creepy small Santa (from the counter) freaked me up a bit and then it made me smile... Anyway, I ain't a fan of pizza and I don't eat it often. I don't see why people go nuts about it but I can stand to eat it ocasionally. I must admit that the one we ordered - BARBECUE HABANERO - was very good and I loved the bread dough. It was soft and not very thick, so I felt more the ingredients than the bread. The meat was very nice and the pices of bacon were well done and a bit crispy. So even I recommend it! :) You can takeout from their website or even from their Facebook page.

Yours truly,
A LadyBug that does not like pizza but she enjoyed the BARBECUE HABANERO
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Sunday, 25 January 2015

It's Wonderful When Your Blog Gets Recognition

Dear friends,

Is it not wonderful when you get recognition for your work? Is it not wonderful especially if it comes after a long while when you thought noone gives a rotten tomatoe on what you are doing? I must admit that last December they hit me all at once: both Expatfinder.com and Expat-blog.com wanted to have me featured on their December 2014 and January 2015 page
***
If you are an Expat for sure you are very well aware of all the expat sites out there (for those who know not what an expat is, it is an expatriate = a person whom temporary or permanently resides in a country that is different than the country he/she was born in. That does not mean immigrants! not necessary! it reffers to the professionals/skilled workers that are sent to work abroad or go there by themselves. The contrast, as you can see, comes from the socio-economic differences between immigrants and expats). 
***
The ones I mentioned above are 2 of the most used sites, with users from all over the world, telling their own stories on how they made it outside of borders. When you are an expat, it is very reassuring to read similar stories of people like yourself, who made it through living in a different country and learning different languages - you learn from their posts and you try to apply some things to your very own day-to-day life. You would be surprised if you would read, to see how much all expats have in common - the standard things that make the expats go crazy, like language barriers, tax papers, public transport, finding food similar to the one in your home-country and so many more...

Expatfinder.com contacted me the first time on the 30th of October last year and now I am one of the 3 featured expats from Poland (along with Khaled Masmoudi -Wrocław, Poland and Gilbert Corbella - Warsaw, Poland).

Expat-blog.com wanted to feature me with an interview as Blog Of The Month for January 2015. They first contacted me on the 18th of December 2014 - I remember as it was yesterday... I was sick and I could barely speak, drinking hot teas non-stop, we were at the start of getting ready to take over the new apartment and start re-designing it... I was a mess but I did my best to do quickly the interview. It was my pleasure and as I was answering to the questions I was smiling and thinking of my first months here... Polish language seemed like horror, like parseltongue, but the people were warm and nice and work was fun so I stayed :) I stayed, and here I am, more than 3 years later :)
***
For me it was a pleasure to get in touch with both Expatfinder.com and Expat-blog.com and I recommend these sites with all my heart for all the expats out there - and future ones as well! You can find there a wide database of information related to cost of living, where to go learn the language and you can always make friends. 

Yours truly,
The Twisted Red LadyBug = A Romanian Expat in Poland
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Thursday, 22 January 2015

The Earth has music for those who listen...

Dear hearts,

I was looking at my phone and lately I have been capturing 2 types of pictures: progress inside the new house (from before to after moments, painting, taking off the floor, setting together the furniture...) or pictures of nature (be it sunsets, a sunrise stolen away from a moment off work, a rush to get to the bus-station and looking up I would see the branches of the trees towering up to reach the sky... you name it!). I think of how time passes us by and we feel the world rushing quicker and quicker... to what we do not know. I sometimes wonder how many people still stop to look at a flower or smile to a child?...
I wonder how life would be if we would learn each day to fall in love again and again to the small little things that we do not even pay attention. Some days ago I woke up and barely got out of bed. It was around 6 and I fell in love with the warm water in the shower, as it helped me wake up and open my eyes more to the things surrounding me. I went out to the place where my friend was supposed to pick me to work and I looked at the crossroad, in the intersection, at a lonely tree across the dark-blue sky... then I looked around and I saw all the trees, with their branches reaching toward the sky, like in a prayer. Then I thought... what are they if not the cities lungs, the lungs that give our lungs air, that help us breathe, that help us live. And I was thankful...
“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, "This is what it is to be happy.” ― Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
“We know that God is everywhere; but certainly we feel His presence most when His works are on the grandest scale spread before us; and it is in the unclouded night-sky, where His worlds wheel their silent course, that we read clearest His infinitude, His omnipotence, His omnipresence.” ― Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre
“We need the tonic of wildness...At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature.” ― Henry David Thoreau, Walden: Or, Life in the Woods
Have you stopped today and fell in love with a small thing? What was it? I would love to hear your little love story :) And if you haven't, then why did you not? did you stop yourself from feeling and thrown yourself into a world of sorrow and repetitive work? are we so close to transforming ourself into little robots? Find the things that make you fall in love and do it again and again :)

Yours truly,
A LadyBug that tries to fall in love daily :)
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Monday, 19 January 2015

A Typical American Restaurant In The Heart Of Krakow = Jeff's

My dearest friends,

I know lately I have been out of tune and I shared here more than the usual amount out movie reviews upon some of my favourite period movies and animations. This is not an excuse post to tell you I am sorry... life has taken over us and priorities change. In the last month we have been very much involved with a combination of holidays like Christmas and New Year VS. The moving out of the old flat and creating our new home in our new apartment. I was involved into selecting the furniture,  the color of the paint and the panels, buying new things for the kitchen and bathroom and the house in general. We first slept in the new home only almost 3 weeks ago and we finished painting the hallway 2 days ago... We still find items we need to buy for the house but the progress was marvellous due to Marek's brothers - a special thank you goes to Michal and Rafal :*
But I knew I wanted to share with you a place in Kraków for a long while but I did not get a chance to sit in front of the computer and write about it. A huge thank you goes as well to my awesome husband for giving me Samsung S4 as a present - for a freak social media fan like me, it's purrrrrrrrfect! So I can read and write blog posts wherever I am and whenever I wish. So here I am!
My favourite dish has an amazing cheese dip! <3
Today I will tell you about Jeffs Neighborhood Grill & Bar - or as the locals know it: Jeff's. With a rank of 417 out of 894 restaurants in Kraków on TripAdvisor, it gathered 59 written reviews on the same site, with a grade of 3.5 out of 5 stars. The restaurant is open from 10 am to the last customer, all days of the week ;) it is located on ul. Podgorska 34. That means Galeria Kazimierz at the last floor, in the food court,  right in front of the Cinema City.  It's always lovely to do a combination of a good movie + dinner at Jeff's.  That is what we did the last 2 times we went for a movie to Cinema City - for The Mockingjay and The Hobbit/The Battle of the Five Armies. We recommend that as it is a perfect evening plan :)
The offer is quite extensive from breakfast to brunch to lunch to dinner or just small treats. The beautiful side is that everything is cooked in  typical American way with special ingredients exported from "The Land Of All Dreams Come True". As I lived there for 4 months and Marek for 5 years,  as soon as we got there and tasted the food we were instant fans of Jeff's. The waitresses are always nice and smiling and each time we went there we had a short visit from the manager of the room, asking if everyone is alright and to our taste. Very good customer service ;) The portions are huge, typical North American. My typical drink is always lemonade ( 7 zloty for 0.33 l) and I like to order the Jeff's Buffalo Wings (12 pieces - you can see them in the picture above - for 21.90 zloty - they can do them spicy or regular).
You can always contact them on Facebook or call them and setup a reservation for a table. It opened in 2001 and running ever since :) The cuisine is signalled as: American (New), American (Traditional), Back to My Photos, Breakfast, Brunch, Burgers, Hot Dogs, Seafood and Steakhouses. You can pay cash or by card (Visa and even American Express). You can see their full menu on their Website and see in advance what you can order ;) We recommend it with all our heart and we believe that if ever you are in Krakow your should give it a go ;) 

Yours truly,
The LadyBug that loves American chicken wings and lemonade :)
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Friday, 16 January 2015

You Have The Air Of A Little Nonnette

Dearest friends,

Today I just wanted to share this adorable little quote from one of my favourite books:
 “–’No, sir.’
‘Ah! By my word! There is something singular about you,’ said he: ‘you have the air of a little nonnette; quaint, quiet, grave, and simple, as you sit with your hands before you, and your eyes generally bent on the carpet (except, by-the-bye, when they are directed piercingly to my face; as just now, for instance); and when one asks you a question, or makes a remark to which you are obliged to reply, you rap out a round rejoinder, which, if not blunt, is at least brusque. What do you mean by it?’
‘Sir, I was too plain: I beg your pardon. I ought to have replied that it was not easy to give an impromptu answer to a question about appearances; that tastes differ; that beauty is of little consequence, or something of that sort.’
‘You ought to have replied no such thing…Just so: I think so: and you shall be answerable for it. Criticize me: does my forehead not please you?’”
 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte - Chapter 14, pg. 115 

Yours truly,
A LadyBug In Love With Period Movies/Books
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Tuesday, 13 January 2015

All Men Would Be Cowards If They Only Had The Courage...

Dear friends,

** This is a review I did a long time ago, on the 23rd of January 2011, and published in my previous blog "Paint The Sky". But as you did not read this before, I thought I may share my thoughts with you. Pay attention to spoilers, as I shall be telling you about The Libertine**
A good Johnny Depp movie... it’s not like he could have made a bad movie… but I may be mistaken, as I am a fan since I was small :)
Actually since watching the movie Edward Scissorhands (1990)
Anyway… let us get to the point :) The movie I am going to talk about is “The Libertine“.
The movie was made in 2004 and it is a history – drama kind of movie.
It presents the story of John Wilmot, a.k.a. the Earl of Rochester, a 17th century poet who famously drank and debauched his way to an early grave, only to earn posthumous critical acclaim for his life’s work.
As you might have suspected, the role – that fits like a glove – of the Earl of Rochester was “gifted” to Mr. Depp. A role  that he portraits most beautifully. The drunkenness that he portraits is one of the best and the act of wooing and seducing Samantha Morton (who portraits Elizabeth Barry, he’s latest and ultimate crush) is simply marvelous to watch.
Another wonderful actor joins the scene occasionally: John Malkovich :) YES! I admit it! I am his fan also :D He plays Charles the 2nd, and the Earl is his protegee :) Although he appears not very often in this movie, he is hard to miss :)
Kelly Reilly – an actress that we do not hear as often as we should, as she does have great potential in her – also played in this movie. She is the Earls favorite prostitute (I know… weird notion…) – Jane. Jane seems very much in love with the Earl and the Earl seems to have a great deal of sympathy towards her. She is not a stupid, silly little woman. She is very down to earth and there is a great deal to be learned from her (not from her trade!!!). At a certain point, in the movie, Jane states that men have 3 types of love during their lifetime: the one when you are young and it is just a fling of passion, the one that you marry and the one that you long for with all your heart…
Rosamund Pike – the lovely lady that is shown in the next picture along with Johnny Depp – portraits the benevolent, lovely and caring wife of the Earl. She is ever loving and ever caring for the Earl, until his last breath…
Rosamund Pike and Johnny Depp :)
Anyway… the movie is very good, with a circular image: starting with the narration of the Earl, trying to convince us of his evilness and the way that we will not like him after the story will be over and finishing again with the Earl, asking us what we make of him now… and now?… and NOW?… (fading into darkness)
At the start I started with the idea that I shall not like him. I shall not like him at all. And the truth is that I should not! Not at all! But his frailty and vulnerability in certain aspects – the same frailty and vulnerability that us, as humans, we all possess – makes him very much likable.
I do abhor drunkenness and brothels and I very much dislike certain aspects of this movie, but overall Depp is a great actor and the Earl is… after all… human! And I would say that he is much more human than Elizabeth, who is his last and most true love.
Anyway… do take care with whom you watch it, as it is rated as: R for strong sexuality including dialogue, violence and language. This movie indeed is not for the faint-hearted. Nor for those who are offended easily.
I wish you would all see it and see how mid 17th century England looked like… with all its riches and glories, with all its passion and – excuse my language here – uplifting of skirts, with all the arts dashing through – the theater is much portrait here, as Elizabeth plays there… – and with all the monstrosities that the syphilis brings… as… you shall know… the Earl died of this disease.
Anyway… that’s for it now :)
Hope you will have the courage to watch this movie and admire it, as you should.

Yours truly,
The LadyBug In Love With Period Movies And Good Old England!
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Saturday, 10 January 2015

About Love, Separation And Dignity

Dearest friends,

** This is a review I did a long time ago, on the 25th of January 2011, and published in my previous blog "Paint The Sky". But as you did not read this before, I thought I may share my thoughts with you. Pay attention to spoilers, as I shall be telling you about Onegin**

… that is what I think “Onegin” (the movie from 1999) is all about: love, separation and dignity overall! Eugene Onegin (Russian: Евге́ний Оне́гин) is a novel in verse written by Alexander Pushkin. It is a classic of Russian literature, and its eponymous protagonist has served as the model for a number of Russian literary heroes.
***
In the opulent St. Petersburg of the Empire period, Eugene Onegin is a jaded but dashing aristocrat – a man often lacking in empathy, who suffers from restlessness, melancholy and, finally, regret. Through his best friend Lensky, Onegin is introduced to the young Tatiana. A passionate and virtuous girl, she soon falls hopelessly under the spell of the aloof newcomer and professes her love for him. Written by Dawn M. Barclift
The story is quite nice, and it is based on Pushkin’s novel-poem. The movie is directed by Martha Fiennes – Ralph’s sister. She has a rather queer view on how the story is assembled – for example the movie ends rather abrupt and leaves you wanting for something more.
To my great shame, I have not read Pushkin’s novel, but I intent to change that :)
The main characters are Onegin and Tatiana. Onegin is wonderfully played by Ralph Fiennes, who makes a convincing Onegin. You can actually feel his struggles and inner pain. You can feel him convinced of the fact that he does not need anyone, that he is better to be left all by himself… that he does not need love and that he is immune to such things.
But yet, there are certain moments in which you can see Onegin’s soft side. That part we can observe during his friendship with Lensky. Lensky is portrait by Toby Stephens (a brilliant British actor) that does an exceptional job in bringing the character to life. You can see that the opposite characters of Lensky and Onegin complement each other and even though they do not resemble in at least one point (Lensky being a poet and a dreamer and Onegin being a firm and resolute person) they somehow attract. You simply cannot not love Lensky, with his frankness and open mindedness and his sense of duty and his strong love… love and duty and dignity that actually costed his life…
One of the most beautiful and vibrant and memorable scenes is the one with the duel between the two. The duel in which Lensky dies… It was quite a shock for me… I was believing that Onegin would only wound him, but seeing his brains scattered was not what I was thinking about!!! I still dunno for sure it I like or hate the scene, but it is truly touching… To see Onegin seeing his friend die by his one hand…
Anyway… Onegin is quite a weird character overall and one cannot truly measure if he really loved Tatiana from day one as what she truly was. When they see each other after several years, when she is married, he fancies he is truly in love with her, but Tatiana seems to be more wise in this last meeting, asking him who does he really love? Tatiana from now or Tatiana from 6 years ago?
Tatiana is beautifully played by Liv Tyler, who does a great job at making one feel her sorrow and desperation when her love is unfulfilled and the deep regret when she encounters Onegin again – regret for the lost love. She is truly sensitive but yet strong as not to fall into temptation and become Onegin’s mistress.
The scenery in the movie is breathtaking and it does somehow remind me or “Dr. Zhivago” and the music fits the scenes like a glove.
Anyway… overall the movie is pretty good and worth watching :) and I do sincerely recommend it with warmth.

Have a good morning beautiful people of the world! :*

P.S. It's also fitting now with the weather outside ;) 

Yours truly,
The Twisted Red LadyBug In Love With Period Movies
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Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Who Is Human And Who Is Monster?

Dear friends,

** This is a review I did a long time ago, on the 11th of February 2011, and published in my previous blog "Paint The Sky". But as you did not read this before, I thought I may share my thoughts with you. Pay attention to spoilers, as I shall be telling you about The Hunchback of Notre Dame - The Walt Disney Classic**

The Hunchback of Notre-Dame (French: Notre-Dame de Paris, “Our Lady of Paris”) is a novel by Victor Hugo published in 1831. The French title refers to the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, around which the story is centered.
Here is a picture of the grand cathedral now-days:
And here is a image from the beautiful animation “Hunchback of Notre Dame”, movie that I shall talk about:
In 15th century Paris, Clopin the puppeteer tells the story of Quasimodo, the misshapen gentle-souled bell ringer of Notre Dame, who was nearly killed as a baby by Claude Frollo, the Minister of Justice. But Frollo was forced by the Archdeacon of Notre Dame to raise Quasimodo as his own. Now a young man, Quasimodo is hidden from the world by Frollo in the belltower of the cathedral. But during the Festival of Fools, Quasimodo, cheered on by his gargoyle friends Victor, Hugo, and Laverne, decides to take part in the festivities, where he meets the lively gypsy girl Esmeralda and the handsome soldier Phoebus. The three of them find themselves ranged against Frollo’s cruelty and his attempts to destroy the home of the gypsies, the Court of Miracles. And Quasimodo must desperately defend both Esmeralda and the very cathedral of Notre Dame. Written by Kathy Li
This beautiful story about love, in all its forms – fulfilled and unfulfilled – has always made me wonder why people differentiate… Why they presume to be better than others?! Why do some people think highly of themselves and want to crush other peoples lives in the process? What makes one person better than the other one? Who measures this?
Who are WE to JUDGE!?! Who are WE to CRITICIZE?!?
Who is the monster and who is the man?!
Who is the true human being?! The one that calls himself as such and feels he has no sin, and is not deformed? OR is it the so called “monster”, that is hideously deformed, that is locked in a tower, that dreams big for every soul that he encounters?
This Walt Disney story is truly magical… the songs help you find hidden meanings in all the images and guide you through the whole story. The images are deeply disturbing sometimes – for example, when Frollo prays to have Esmeralda and if that is not possible, at least kill her in the process… now that is what I call love!!! NOT!!! – and at other times, the color and the movement of the scenes are just soothing and relaxing – Quasimodo singing on top of the beautiful Cathedral (and I may add that the Cathedral is very much life like ;) as I have just seen it last year… and NO! I did not find him there :P ).
 ***
Demi Moore is playing Esmeralda, Kevin Kline plays Phoebus and Ton Hulce is Quasimodo. I know you never heard of Tom Hulce probably and neither have I :) but I think he does a marvelous job!!! Two thumbs up :)
Anyway, I was also wondering about actors that do animations… what are they thinking of when they say “Yes!” to a beautiful movie as such after they made several other movies in real life and on different other subjects, on a whole other audience?!
I came up with 2 options until now:
1) either they state that they do this for their actual children / future children so they could watch the movie together (e.g. Johnny Depp – who wanted to have movies that he could also watch with his children – let us say “Finding Neverland“)
2) they pretend to do that for their little ones, but in fact they want to do this for themselves, in order to get in touch with their child within (and again, the e.g. would be Johnny Depp ;) ) in “Pirates of the Caribbean“)
Well… no one knows for sure :) right?!
SO! DO WATCH this movie!
It will speak to you as a child and it will also speak to you if you are 60 years old :)


Yours truly,
The Twisted Red LadyBug
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Sunday, 4 January 2015

A Johnny Depp Movie About Jack The Ripper

Dear friends,

** This is a review I did a long time ago, on the 27th of February 2011, and published in my previous blog "Paint The Sky". But as you did not read this before, I thought I may share my thoughts with you. Pay attention to spoilers, as I shall be telling you about From Hell**

It is 1888 in London, and the unfortunate poor lead horrifying lives in the city’s deadliest slum, Whitechapel. Harassed by gangs and forced to walk the streets for a living, Mary Kelly and her small group of companions trudge on through this daily misery, their only consolation being that things can’t get any worse. Yet things somehow do when their friend Ann is kidnapped and they are drawn into a conspiracy with links higher up than they could possibly imagine. The kidnapping is soon followed by the gruesome murder of another woman, Polly, and it becomes apparent that they are being hunted down, one by one. Sinister even by Whitechapel standards, the murder grabs the attention of Inspector Fred Abberline, a brilliant yet troubled man whose police work is often aided by his psychic abilities. Abberline becomes deeply involved with the case, which takes on personal meaning to him when he and Mary begin to fall in love…
“From Hell” is another Jack-the-Ripper yarn. This time around Johnny Depp plays Inspector Frederick George Abberline, who is investigating the work of a killer carving up the bodies of prostitutes in Whitechapel, London.
***
“From Hell” is a borderline horror/thriller. There is a fantastical element to the story as Depp receives visions of the killings, when “chasing the dragon” (or, in simpler terms, when doped up to his eye-balls). These visions are used to make mad-intuitive leaps on Abberline’s parts to help push along the story-line, as the bodies begin to pile up. Unfortunately the killer is quite obvious as the script provides “red herrings” which are set up in a manner that you know they’re going to be false, so the viewer is “surprised” (or not) when the real killer is revealed. That’s a shame as it removes some of the mystery from the movie when you realise you got it right. There’s also a rather interesting take on the murderer’s reasoning, which is not entirely unwelcome, but does feel somewhat as if they need to pad out the story and distinguish it from other Ripper yarns.
 ***
Johnny Depp kicks ass at this movie, showing us Inspector Fred Abberline similar to a Sherlock Holmes :) He is a very clever character and combined with his sidekick played by  Robbie Coltrane (whom you surely know from Harry Potter as Rubeus Hagrid) – that provides a heckload of fun – they make a perfect pair.
Mary Kelly is a very lovely character played by Heather Graham. The Irish beautiful prostituate that looks like a perfect doll and dresses as such is very appealing but somehow makes you think of her as a lady and not a female practicising her trade…
Anyway… I had to see this movie in 2 separate nights – I stopped at the middle of the movie feeling sick… the images are highly disturbing and it really makes you feel as if you were there, in the dark streets of London…
Overall :) it is a pleasant Johnny Depp movie. And it is ALWAYS a pleasure to see Johnny work his magic on the screen ;)

Yours truly,
A LadyBug Very Much Addicted To Johnny Depp/Helena Bonham Carter :)

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