Just Chill   

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Just Chill takes your Genesis Morphing Business in a completely new direction – casual and chilled out. You will barely recognize the suit when this set of high quality textures is applied to it. A collection of mix and match sets, Just Chilled features worn leather, old denim, corduroy and used tartan as well as flannel, fur and folksy hippie weaves. The product includes new looks for the pants, jacket, waistcoat, shirt and fedora, so you’ll need both the MBS and Expansion 1 to use this set. Your Genesis character will fit as well into a slum as a stock exchange when you add this set to you MBS wardrobe.

There are full sets of stitched brown leather, stitched black leather, green corduroy and old denim that works well with your own diffuse color added. You also get three worn tartan jackets with interchangeable leather and fur lapels to change the look of any MBS jacket textures. A couple of colorful, ethnic vest weaves can add that hippie vibe to any outfit. Three classic flannel shirt textures complete the set. All are created using high resolution tiled texture bases with details added via normal maps for the equivalent of around 8,000 by 8,000 on a texture map. This is needed to prevent distortion when using some of the extreme morphs that come with the MBS.

Just Chill also adds extra morphs to your extensive MBS morph list. There’s morphs to widen the belts and enlarge the belt loops so you can easily achieve the cool hipster bellbottom pants used in these promos. Another morph for the shirt lets you push the sleeves up to the elbows for that super casual look.

Price: $12.95 Special Price: $6.48


          

The Leicester at Reigate Road, Hookwood, Horley RH6, 4 bedroom semi detached...   

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This development offers the following schemes: Help to Buy: Equity Loan - Move with just a 5% deposit using the Government-backed Help to Buy: Equity Loan schemeHome Change - We can help sell your home in three simple stepsPart Exchange - Our...
4 rooms 2 bathrooms
Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:05:11 +0200
          

The Regent at Southminster Road, Burnham On Crouch CM0, 5 bedroom detached house   

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This development offers the following schemes: Home Change - We can help sell your home in three simple stepsHelp to Buy: Equity Loan - Move with just a 5% deposit using the Government-backed Help to Buy: Equity Loan schemePart Exchange - Our...
5 rooms
Thu, 26 Sep 2019 17:03:25 +0200
          

The Melbourne at Sir Bobby Robson Way, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE13, 5 bedroom...   

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This development offers the following schemes: Help to Buy: Equity Loan - Move with just a 5% deposit using the Government-backed Help to Buy: Equity Loan schemePart Exchange - Our part exchange schemes enables you to buy the house of your dreams...
5 rooms 4 bathrooms
Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:04:55 +0200
          

Apartment at Ferens Close, Durham DH1, 2 bedroom flat   

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This development offers the following schemes: Help to Buy: Equity Loan - Move with just a 5% deposit using the Government-backed Help to Buy: Equity Loan schemePart Exchange - Our part exchange schemes enables you to buy the house of your dreams...
2 rooms
Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:04:54 +0200
          

Myles at Ulverston LA12, 5 bedroom town house   

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This development offers the following schemes: Part Exchange - Our part exchange schemes enables you to buy the house of your dreams – worry-free!Help to Buy: Equity Loan - Move with just a 5% deposit using the Government-backed Help to Buy:...
5 rooms
Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:04:49 +0200
          

The Cosgrove at Heathencote, Towcester NN12, 4 bedroom detached house   

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This development offers the following schemes: Help to Buy: Equity Loan - Move with just a 5% deposit using the Government-backed Help to Buy: Equity Loan schemeHome Change - We can help sell your home in three simple stepsPart Exchange - Our...
4 rooms
Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:04:49 +0200
          

The Lumley at Reigate Road, Hookwood, Horley RH6, 4 bedroom town house   

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This development offers the following schemes: Help to Buy: Equity Loan - Move with just a 5% deposit using the Government-backed Help to Buy: Equity Loan schemeHome Change - We can help sell your home in three simple stepsPart Exchange - Our...
4 rooms 3 bathrooms
Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:04:46 +0200
          

Virgin Galactic : les voyages d'agrément dans l'espace pour 2020 ?   

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Si l'on en croit la demande faite par Virgin Galactic à la Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), les voyages d'agrément dans l'espace devraient démarrer dès l'an prochain. Le point avec Miche...
          

Trump Sows Turkey Chaos as U.S. Denies Endorsing Syria Incursion   

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Trump Sows Turkey Chaos as U.S. Denies Endorsing Syria Incursion(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump hasn’t endorsed a Turkish incursion into Syria, a senior administration official said, deepening confusion around his policy after an uproar from Republicans that he planned to abandon U.S. Kurdish allies.The official said Trump has cautioned Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that he will bear responsibility for Islamic State prisoners in the region, as well as a resurgence of violence if the militants are freed and any harm to civilians in areas Turkey occupies.The official briefed reporters on condition of anonymity.Trump later suggested his move to clear the way for a Turkish invasion was intended in part to pressure European countries including France and Germany that, he said, have refused to accept the return of citizens who joined Islamic State.Trump said at a meeting with military leaders that he had urged U.S. allies to reclaim their citizens, but they had refused.“We’re not going to move the fighters to Guantanamo Bay and take care of them for many, many years into the future, that’s not for us,” he said. “Now it’s time for Germany and France and all of the nations where they came from to take them back and they chose no. Maybe they’re going to change their tune now, I don’t know.”Trump has come under criticism from allies including Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and his former United Nations ambassador, Nikki Haley, for his announcement late Sunday that the U.S. wouldn’t stand in the way of the Turkish incursion.The White House statement was read around the world as Trump abandoning U.S. policy that Kurdish allies would be protected from Turkish aggression in exchange for their help in defeating Islamic State.Former Vice President Joe Biden, who is among the top Democratic contenders to challenge Trump’s re-election in 2020, said in a statement that “once again, an impulsive and erratic president has abandoned friends of the United States with a late-night tweet.”American officials didn’t immediately explain the president’s change in position on Syria. Trump’s order to remove about 50 U.S. troops from a Syria border region Turkey intends to invade doesn’t represent a green light for the incursion, the U.S. official said. The official added that Trump had discussed the decision with officials at the State Department and Pentagon before the White House announcement, and that the agencies should not have been surprised.The U.S. had successfully dissuaded Turkey from an invasion for two years, but if Erdogan orders an operation, the U.S. doesn’t want its soldiers endangered or caught in the crossfire, the official said.I’ve told President Erdogan, I hope he’s going to treat everybody with great respect,” Trump said at the meeting with military leaders. Earlier, he told reporters at the White House: “I have consulted with everybody.”“I fully understand both sides of it but I campaigned on the fact I was going to bring our soldiers home,” he said.The administration official did not say that any U.S. soldiers would be brought home as a result of the withdrawal. The troops moved from the border region, mostly special forces soldiers, would be re-positioned at different U.S. bases in Syria, the official said.(Updates with more Trump remarks, beginning in fourth paragraph)To contact the reporters on this story: Josh Wingrove in Washington at jwingrove4@bloomberg.net;Justin Sink in Washington at jsink1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Alex Wayne at awayne3@bloomberg.net, John HarneyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



          

North Koreans Think Trump Admin Talks Are ‘Sickening.’ So Should You.   

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North Koreans Think Trump Admin Talks Are ‘Sickening.’ So Should You.Alex Wong/GettyIf President Donald Trump is thinking a deal with his friend Kim Jong Un might distract from his troubles at home, he'd better think again. The abrupt end of “working-level” negotiations between U.S. and North Korean officials in Stockholm over the weekend proves yet again that talking isn’t working. “Kim thought he could sucker us because of the president's statements and because our alliances are in trouble and because he believed Trump wanted a foreign policy success,” said David Maxwell, retired special forces colonel and senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. “We have to keep pushing Kim to really conduct negotiations, but the minute we give in to giving him concessions, he has won and we have lost.”While Trump Shrugs, North Korea’s Building Better MissilesIf the firing of the hawkish John Bolton as Trump’s national security adviser “helped Kim think he could get what he wants,” said Maxwell, the North Koreans at Stockholm yet again confirmed that Kim is not about to give up his precious nukes. The nuclear program was initiated by his grandfather, Kim Il Sung, perpetuated by his father, Kim Jong Il, and is now the centerpiece of Kim’s defense policy.North Korea’s foreign ministry left no doubt about the failure of the talks. “We have no intention to hold such sickening negotiations as what happened this time,” said the statement, throwing cold water over the session in Stockholm, which had lasted eight hours and thirty minutes. The U.S. negotiator, Stephen Biegun, had tried in vain to present ideas that the Americans should have known would be unacceptable. A North Korean official identified only as a spokesperson, possibly First Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui, who is a key figure in talks with the U.S., sarcastically mimicked Washington’s demand for “complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization.” The U.S., said the spokesperson, must take “a substantial step to make complete and irreversible withdrawal of the hostile policy toward the DPRK," i.e., the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.The statement wound up with a threat intended to catch the attention of Trump as he contemplates maybe a third summit with Kim–his fourth if you count their impromptu meeting on the North-South line at Panmunjom at the end of June.Better watch out, was the message. If the U.S. “again fingers [points] at the old scenario,” said the spokesperson, “the dealings between the DPRK and the U.S. may immediately come to an end.” Indeed, the statement concluded, “the fate of the future DPRK-U.S. dialogue depends on the U.S. attitude, and the end of this year is its deadline.”The Americans for their part seemed to think another round of talks would be just the thing to head off that looming deadline lest Kim inspire a crisis similar to that of two years ago when tests of nuclear warheads and long-range missiles were the norm. State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus said the U.S. was accepting Sweden’s invitation to meet again in two weeks, but North Korea was having none of it.“The U.S. is spreading a completely ungrounded story that both sides are open to meet after two weeks,” said the North Korean spokesperson, but “it is not likely at all that it can produce a proposal commensurate to the expectations of the DPRK and to the concerns of the world in just fortnight [sic].”The statement decried the U.S. failure to come up with what the North Koreans call “a new calculation method,” dismissing out of hand the litany of proposals that Biegun had put on the table.The exact nature of that “calculation method” was not clear, but presumably it calls for prolonging the moratorium on testing nuclear warheads and intercontinental ballistic missiles in exchange for relief from sanctions. The North might even suspend its aging nuclear complex at Yongbyon while fabricating warheads elsewhere in a step-by-step process immune from serious inspections and would surely press for an “end-of-war” declaration under which the U.S. would have to withdraw most of its 28,500 troops from South Korea.“The fundamental problem with Trump’s North Korea efforts—they can’t be called an actual policy—is that North Korea has not even considered giving up its nuclear weapons,” said David Straub, retired senior U.S. diplomat in Seoul and Washington. “As long as that’s the case, no amount of Trump sucking up to Kim will make a real difference, and Trump backed off maximum pressure long ago.”To veteran U.S. diplomats, Trump’s grasp on reality is far from clear. “As with many of his other policies, Trump is engaged in fantasy,” said Straub, “but because he engages in fantasy, who can predict how he will now respond?”  Straub asks if Trump “is mad at Pompeo and his negotiating team and will order even more gifts and concessions?”Evans Revere, who once headed the North Korean desk at the State Department and was number two U.S. diplomat in Seoul, sees the outcome at Stockholm as “a very predictable collapse.” The North Korean strategy, said Revere,  “appears to have been to take advantage of the U.S. fixation on working-level talks, use the testing of increasingly capable ballistic missiles to pressure Washington, and to issue threats about an end-of-year deadline to ensure the United States team came to the table with a more generous, flexible, and creative offer than the one Trump made in Hanoi.”Trump, Revere believes, “backed off maximum pressure long ago.”Under the circumstances, the U.S. was in no mood to articulate publicly its proposals at Stockholm. “The U.S. brought creative ideas and had good discussions with its DPRK counterparts,” said Ortagus at the State Department, citing but not explaining “a number of new initiatives that would allow us to make progress.”Clearly the North Koreans saw all that stuff as diplo-speak for an elaborate ruse to get them to give up their nukes while the North has flaunted its military prowess in short-range missile tests.Trump has said such tests are not in violation of any understanding reached with Kim at their first summit in Singapore last year, but North Korea most recently has aroused concerns by test-firing a short-range missile from an under-water platform. North Korea’s party newspaper, Rodong Sinmun, called the prototype for a submarine-launched ballistic missile a “time bomb” and “most fearful dagger” pointed at its enemies. In theory, a submarine might be able to launch such a missile, tipped with a nuclear warhead, while submerged undetected off the U.S. west coast.In fact, the North Koreans in Stockholm seemed to have gained a measure of revenge for the humiliation of the second Trump-Kim summit in Hanoi at the end of February when Trump walked out without reaching so much as a meaningless statement with Kim similar to the one that ended the Singapore summit.Donald Trump Enters the Eccentric Dictator Phase of His PresidencyThat denouement, which the North Koreans blamed on Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, resulted in the dismissal of the top North Korean advisers surrounding Kim, notably Kim Yong Chol, the North’s former intelligence chief, whom Pompeo had seen in Pyongyang, New York, and Washington. Trump, after his 45-minute closed-door meeting with Kim on the North-South line at Panmunjom on June 30, said Kim had agreed on working-level talks to bring about a real deal on the basis of their summit in Singapore. “The Kim regime may misperceive from Singapore that it can throw negotiators under the bus, rush into another summit, and extract greater concessions from Trump,” said Leif-Eric Easley, professor of international relations at Ewha University in Seoul, “but a lesson from Hanoi is that if the North Koreans want sanctions relief, they’re going to have to do the work at the working level.” This time, however, the new North Korean negotiator, Kim Myong Gil, a veteran diplomat who had negotiated with Americans in talks in the '90s and then as ambassador to the United Nations, was taking no chances. The meeting, he said, had “not fulfilled our expectations and broke down.” Presumably, on orders from Pyongyang, he was not going to concede anything in return for whatever concessions the Americans might offer. Instead, he staged a walkout of his own.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.



          

These tricks are treats: Creating elaborate Halloween costumes   

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A head-on-a-platter illusion turned plenty of heads in Spokane as a Halloween costume.

Another year brought forth an uncanny Edward Scissorhands, followed the next Halloween by a mermaid-and-pirate combo. Audrey Alfaro, a food writer for The Spokesman-Review, is the creative force behind the elaborate costumes she’s made for her daughter, now 8.

“The inspiration for her costumes come from some of my favorite movies and characters along with just plain demented ideas I think of,” said Alfaro, who describes herself as a big horror fan.

She looks forward to making Halloween costumes every year.

“The costumes can take anywhere from two days to two weeks to make. I’m a huge thrift store shopper, so about everything I use to make her costumes are secondhand. They’re quite affordable.”

Whether costumes are made or bought, pop culture will have its usual influence on what’s trendy this year for Halloween, along with perennial favorites from pirates to princesses.

Some of the season’s attire is expected to mimic Netflix’s “Stranger Things” or the YouTube sensation “Baby Shark.” Other popular costumes are likely to include Princess Jasmine and other characters from the recent live-action “Aladdin.”

If you’re looking for bargain costumes, the Coeur d’Alene Public Library has scheduled its first kids costume exchange. The free event is open from 10:45 a.m.-noon today for families or as long as supplies last.

Mandi Harris, Coeur d’Alene’s youth services librarian, said she had already received four bins full of donated costumes by this week.

“It is the first year we’ve done this, and it was inspired by a program that Meridian (Idaho) Library does,” Harris said. “They have a vibrant costume exchange program.”

She started one in Hayden last year, and it was popular. In recent weeks, Harris received donations of a few adult and infant costumes, as well as some for teens. But a majority of costumes in the swap will fit kids of preschool and elementary school ages.

“The idea is these costumes don’t get worn that frequently, so it helps families to save money and swap rather than shop,” Harris added.

Brenna Stanfield, a Spokane County resident, is another parent who prefers to borrow props or raid her household’s closets for creating family costumes. Stanfield works in family and children’s ministry for Colbert Presbyterian Church, and she and her husband have four kids ages 4 to 11.

“We usually pick a theme based on books or movies,” she said. “One year it was ‘Robin Hood,’ and we had Robin Hood, Maid Marian, Good King Richard the Lionheart, and our littlest was Friar Tuck.

“Another year, it was ‘The Hobbit’ with the Hobbit, Gandalf the Great and an elfin girl for our daughter. My parents thought it was so fun that they found a great dragon costume, so we had Smaug, as well. With four kids, it’s very fun.”

Last year, the family came up with favorite people from history. Their eldest morphed into Blackbeard the pirate, while another son was his first mate. Their daughter was Queen Victoria, who was accompanied by their youngest son as her tiger.

“We figured queens of that era had exotic pets. We had a Tigger costume, so we made it work.”

The family goes to harvest parties and does a little trick-or-treating along the neighborhood block.

Other parents, such as Alfaro, start mostly from scratch to make costumes. Six years ago, her daughter’s costume received plenty of notice when they visited downtown Spokane.

“In a sea of princesses, a head on a platter really stands out – as I witnessed firsthand when Mobius Children’s Museum in River Park Square held a Halloween costume contest,” Alfaro said.

“My little 2-year-old was not only the most shocking thing onstage, but also the only little girl not donning a dress.”

After creating the elaborate costumes for her daughter, Alfaro has entered them in online costume contests. Over the years, she’s won tickets to Seahawks games, a guitar, $500 on Fandango, Broadway show tickets and more than $2,500 in gift cards and cash.

What’s in store for this year? Alfaro recently decided: Annabelle, the haunted doll, locked in a case. “So I’m excited to get started.”


          

Taliban free 3 Indians in exchange for 11 leaders   

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Taliban free 3 Indians in exchange for 11 leadersThree Indian engineers held by the Taliban in Afghanistan since May 2018 have been freed by the militant group in exchange for 11 of its top members from Afghan jails, according to an Afghan media report on Monday.



          

Swiss FTA submits first set of data on Indian account holders   

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Swiss FTA submits first set of data on Indian account holdersSwitzerland s Federal Tax Administration (FTA), in a statement Monday, said it has exchanged information on financial accounts with 75 countries, out of which 63 reciprocated, under the global framework of the automatic exchange of information (AEOI).



          

Destutt de Tracy on the mutually beneficial nature of exchange (1817)   

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Destutt de Tracy on the mutually beneficial nature of exchange (1817)


          

McHenry man sentenced to prison for cocaine delivery   

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A McHenry man involved in a single-vehicle crash that sent him to the hospital in 2017 was sentenced to prison Monday for having cocaine in his car the day it collided with a utility pole.

David D. McDow, 27, accepted an offer from the McHenry County State's Attorney's Office Monday and pleaded guilty to a felony charge of delivery of a controlled substance. McHenry County Judge Michael Coppedge sentenced McDow to seven years in prison.

In exchange for McDow's guilty plea, prosecutors agreed to dismiss additional charges, several of which were tied to separate cases. The man's attorney, Sam Amirante, said McDow was satisfied with the plea deal and is ready to put the situation behind him.

"He has come such a long way," Amirante said. "He actually turned from a boy to a man and is very, very mature and responsible in everything that he does now."

McDow was arrested in June 2017 after he reportedly crashed his Chrysler Sebring into a utility pole in Woodstock, according to a July 30, 2018 court filing from the McHenry County State's Attorney's Office.

While McDow was being treated for injuries, police conducted an inventory search of the man's vehicle before it was towed, according to the July 2018 court filing.

During the search, police discovered more than 6 ounces of cocaine packaged and ready for sale, according to a news release the McHenry County State's Attorney's Office sent Monday.

Police later learned McDow's blood-alcohol level was .146 at the time of the crash, prosecutors stated in the July 2018 document.

Since his arrest, McDow has worked through some personal issues, his attorney said.

"He’s really turned his life completely around," Amirante said. "It’s sad to see him go away."


          

Bastiat on trade as a the mutual exchange of "a service for another service" (1848)   

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Bastiat on trade as a the mutual exchange of “a service for another service” (1848)


          

Henry Vaughan argues that it is the voluntary and "universal concurrence of mankind", not the laws, which makes money acceptable as a medium of exchange (1675)   

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Henry Vaughan argues that it is the voluntary and “universal concurrence of mankind”, not the laws, which makes money acceptable as a medium of exchange (1675)


          

HKEx reportedly plans to raise LSEG bid   

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Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing this week plans to raise its 32 billion bid to take over London Stock Exchange Group, inclu -More

          

SEC's Peirce: CAT data collection on retail investors is excessive   

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Securities and Exchange Commission member Hester Peirce has said the amount of data the consolidated audit trail will track o -More

          

Ahead of Diwali, Flipkart crosses 70 billion in views   

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Bengaluru: Aiming to bring the next 200 million consumers to the e-commerce fold, Flipkart on Friday said that "The Big Billion Days" sale witnessed almost 50 per cent growth in the number of new customers compared to last year, with 70 billion views in six days of the sale that began on September 29.

Clocking record sales powered by shoppers and sellers from tier 2 cities and beyond, more than 50 per cent of Flipkart Plus shoppers were from smaller cities and towns, while sales from tier 3 cities grew by 100 per cent (YoY).

"We take immense pride in making e-commerce more inclusive through the introduction of some top categories which during this festive season, have been able to cater to the needs of Tier 2 markets and beyond," Kalyan Krishnamurthy, CEO of Flipkart Group, said in a statement.

Nearly 50 per cent of top sellers on Flipkart witnessed 3X growth and over 40 per cent of transacting sellers during the sale were from Tier 2 and beyond towns.

"Among multi-platform e-commerce sellers, the wallet share seen on Flipkart by sellers was 70 per cent, while for fashion and home, our wallet share has hit as high as 80 per cent," said Flipkart.

Fashion witnessed a 70 per cent growth in sales compared to last year and women customers contributed 45 per cent to overall fashion sales (units sold).

"Fifteen apparels, seven shoes and five accessories were sold every second during the sale period. In the Flipkart fashion portfolio, 20 brands sold more than 1 lakh units this time. The Flipkart fashion originals portfolio sales grew 100 per cent in the sale period," the company informed.<br> <br>The mobile category saw the biggest festive season till date, with brands achieving more than 2X growth over the last year's sale.

"More than 20 models sold over 100K units each during the sale, which is a first for any event. At the start of early access, there was a 1.5X spike in users, which reflects an eager anticipation for mobiles. There was 2.5X increase in adoption of product exchange in mobile phone purchases," the e-commerce platform announced.

The Electronics category witnessed an overall growth of 50 per cent in new customers as 34 electronic accessories were sold every second during early access.

"Apple Watches earned over a month's of their India business in the first six minutes of The Big Billion Days sale, said Flipkart.

In the large appliances category, one in two TVs, one in three washing machines, one in five refrigerators and one in five ACs bought in India during these six days were bought on Flipkart. Ten TVs were sold per second in the first hour of the sale.

"The Big Billion Days has also brought our entire ecosystem together from our seller partners to artisans, weavers and consumers who were all able to spread festive cheers across categories," said Krishnamurthy.

September 30 was the single largest day for commerce in the country as Flipkart emerged as the destination for large appliances with 2X growth on Day 1. The share of transactions via Flipkart's credit options increased 70 per cent.

"Artisans and weaver partners through "Flipkart Samarth" programme witnessed over 100 per cent growth in sales while over 40 per cent of transacting sellers were from Tier 2 and beyond," said the company.


          

The SEC's final bitcoin ETF ruling is on deck. Here's what investors can expect   

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Matt Hougan of Bitwise Investments, Reginald Browne of GTS and Tom Lydon of ETFTrends.com talk the Securities and Exchange Commission's upcoming ruling on a long-awaited bitcoin ETF.
          

Review: The Shadow Court by Jenn Stark (Wilde Justice #4)   

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The Shadow Court (Wilde Justice #4)Jenn StarkPublished: Sept. 30, 2019 (Elewyn Publishing)Purchase at: AmazonReview Source: Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review Reviewed by: Amy Rating (out of 5): 5 stars Note: This review will be spoiler free, however it will reference events from the previous Immortal Vegas series, if you […]
          

Lucky 13   

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Dad and I first crossed the Grand Canyon together in 2004, when I was 25 and he was 51 years old. In one of those mundane yet still-jarring realizations, I acknowledged that someday, not all that long from now, I'll be the same age as he was then ... if I'm lucky. If I'm even luckier, we may still be planning a fall Grand Canyon crossing for that year. It's not outside the realm of possibility. Although he has his share of somewhat odd health setbacks and accident-related injuries — a genetic legacy I reluctantly carry — he seems as likely to become a spry 77-year-old as I am a capable 51-year-old. And I really want this tradition to continue. It doesn't get old — gazing across the Grand Canyon, or crossing its main corridor on an always-unpredictable autumn day with my dad.


It goes without saying, how much I admire my dad, but I'm not sure I've really said it here before. He raised three girls, working hard for a single-income household so my mom could stay at home. We enjoyed an idyllic childhood with lots of love and regular family vacations and important traditions. Things have never been all that difficult or contentious in our immediate family, even when I made a choice to diverge from some of those traditions. For this I am grateful. Dad was always athletic, but he picked up hiking in force when I was 13 or 14 years old, which would have made him about my age now, 40. I wasn't yet 15 when he started inviting me to join his hiking group on shorter jaunts, and about to turn 16 when he accompanied me up my first big mountain, Timpanogos. I remember having the sorest legs and terrible heel blisters, but it was a formative experience — one of a handful of truly life-changing moments I count from my youth.


Dad was able to retire a few years back, and some people close to him questioned how someone so healthy and relatively young could step away from his career. What was he going to do for the rest of his life? His reply — "What I want to do." I think I admire him most for this. He doesn't need validation or ambition to stay vibrant. He simply wants to experience life at its brightest edges, and ride the exhilarating waves through every crest and trough. I think it helps that this is all I want from life, too. He worked hard, planned well and earned his freedom to wake up whenever his sleep-challenged body has had enough rest, and set out for a day-long ramble through mountains he has lived near for most of his life.

 As with all traditions, life happens and we've missed some years in the past 15. I crunched the numbers because as usual I'd forgotten but was curious about how many crossings we've shared. Including the doubles of 2015 and 2016, this year was my 13th rim-to-rim with Dad. This was a lower-key year where we'd spend fewer than 24 hours in the park, and cross our favored route from south to north on the Kaibab trails. Because room reservations have become so difficult to obtain, our trip has skewed earlier in recent years, from mid-October to late-September. This usually means hotter weather, and I was braced for the worst, having lost any heat acclimation while in Europe.

 We were joined this year by Chad, one of Dad's original hiking buddies. We set out at first light, in pleasantly mild weather with a temperature near 40 and a light breeze. As rich morning light saturated the layered expanse of sandstone and sky, I smirked at the memory of how unsettled I used to feel while gazing across the chasm. Before our first crossing in 2004, I trained specifically all summer so I'd been in prime condition. I greatly feared the prospect of faltering during the long climb out and disappointing my dad. I barely slept the night before the hike, because I was so nervous. It was a huge undertaking. Now, I'm not even sure I'd rank the rim-to-rim in my top five toughest outings since my birthday fourteeners, six weeks earlier.

Much about this trip has become routine, but the views are still as awe-inspiring as ever. Still, as I was packing my little running vest with minimal supplies, I wavered on bringing my camera. I mean, I love photos, and I take thousands of them even on my most mundane running routes near home. But would I even have anything new to share about the Grand Canyon? This feels like a trail everyone has traveled and views everyone has seen, in locations I've already documented a dozen times now. I tend to forget how special this place is at all times, and how unique every crossing can be.

 On this morning, amid ideal temperatures, all of the confidence of 15 years, and lots of leg pep and energy, the friendly skies opened up for some stunning magic light. Everything felt as perfect as it could possibly be.

 Sadly, about two miles in, there was a bout of bad luck as Chad rolled his ankle and fell forward onto the trail. It's strange, really, that out of a dozen crossings that involve both Dad and myself, there hasn't been an injury on this trip yet. It's even stranger that the first occurrence didn't happen to one of us. Chad is a talented runner and mountaineer who rarely has such mishaps, but he got unlucky. He wrapped his swollen ankle and walked for another quarter mile before deciding his injury was untenable for a full crossing. I was lucky to find the one spot of cell phone reception in the canyon, and was able to get ahold of my mom, who was preparing to drive around to the other side and pick us up. So Chad was able to hike out and get a ride without drama, only disappointment. 

 Dad and I continued deeper into the canyon, where the shadow and light continued to inspire. We didn't do a lot of talking on this year's trip — Dad and I are a lot alike, and if you put the two of us alone together, there probably won't be an overwhelming exchange of spoken words. He seemed as content as I felt, but I did worry that he might be in more pain than he was letting on. For the past few weeks he's experienced sharp pain in his upper leg, near his hamstrings. When Dad complains about pain, I know it's bad, but he claimed he only felt it when bending over or sitting for long periods of time. While hiking, he felt much better. A few days later he would be diagnosed with a bulging disc impacting the nerve in his right leg.

 He's now trying conservative treatments, and hopefully they will work. But a bulging disc can be terribly painful; it's impressive he managed a Grand Canyon crossing with this issue. I thought back to something Dad shared with me while I was still in high school, about meeting a 68-year-old man on the knife ridge below the Pfeifferhorn in the Wasatch Mountains. He marveled at the man's strength and hoped he could still move so well at that age. At the time I could not picture my dad as a 68-year-old man. It really won't be long, now.

 Dad's nerve pain seemed to stay away, and we moved at a steady clip past Phantom Ranch and through the box canyon towering over Bright Angel Creek. Even on cool days, this spot is often an oven. But the morning cloud cover remained, and temperatures stayed stunningly mild for September. I don't think it was ever much hotter than 70 degrees.

We planned our usual lunch spot at Ribbon Falls, a mile-long diversion from the main trail. Signs at Phantom Ranch indicated the bridge was out, so we cut across the canyon early and made our way through a tangle of tamarisk and the creek crossing. My Dad and I make a humorous team when it comes to off-trail navigating, but he found a way across and did not get his feet wet. I was not so lucky, but then again I was mostly worried about falling on my bad wrist, so I was not really trying.

 The sun stayed away for most of the day, but it came out briefly at lunch time, just long enough to provide a warm spot to sit on the rocks beside the falls, and enjoy the sparkle of cascading water over brilliant green moss.

 We continued up the canyon and caught a view of the broken foot bridge. It was really broken. I couldn't fathom the kind of flash flooding that would have to occur to cause that amount of damage to a sturdy bridge that had been in place for years, well before my first trip down the Canyon. I wondered if anyone was around to see it happen.

 Then it was just up and up and up, on this perfectly cool afternoon with continuing beautiful light at a relaxed but steady clip. We speculated on our fastest crossing, so of course I went home and combed through past data. This was our second-fastest trip since I started Strava'ing (2011), with a moving time of 7:31. Our fastest was the second crossing in 2016, but that included no faffing around to cross the stream or a side trip to Ribbon Falls. I have my good years and not-so-good years, but Dad seems to only become stronger — especially now that he spends so much of his time hiking. Someday we may end up on a R2R2R "run" of this canyon, but I mostly doubt it. Dad seems to be all about the love and the enjoyment, with only the tiniest bit of pride about performance. I think his friend Chad nearly has him talked into a 50K, though.

One of my favorite aspects of traditions is the way time seems to stand still within them. Here in the Grand Canyon, surrounded by the expanse of light and shadow, cliffs carved by millennia and changing before our eyes, I still feel like that 25-year-old in her cotton tank top and New Balance road shoes, eyes wide and heart fluttering. I have no doubt I'll feel the same when I'm 50, if I make it that far. 

          

NRA: Notable Russian Asset?   

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Adam Gabbatt at The Guardian:
The National Rifle Association (NRA) has acted as a “foreign asset” in providing Russian officials access to US political organizations, according to an investigation by Senate Democrats.
The results of the investigation were published by the Oregon senator Ron Wyden on Friday. The report also alleges that the NRA may have broken tax laws by using donated funds to further its officers’ business interests.
Wyden and other Democrats on the Senate finance committee found that a delegation of NRA officials traveled to Moscow in December 2015.
The trip was coordinated with Maria Butina and Alexander Torshin, who are both Russian. Butina is currently serving an 18-month prison sentence after she tried to infiltrate US conservative groups and the NRA to promote Russian political interests around the 2016 election.
While in Russia the NRA met with “a host of senior level Kremlin officials”, Wyden said. Those officials included Russia’s foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, and the deputy prime minister, Dmitry Rogozin, who oversaw defense and munitions industries.
After the trip to Russia, the NRA allowed Butina to bring a delegation from Russia to its influential annual meeting. Wyden said the NRA also “provided access” to other conservative political organizations, including the National Prayer Breakfast and the Council for National Policy.
The investigation also found that the then vice-president of the NRA, Pete Brownell, had agreed to go on the trip in exchange for business opportunities in Russia. At least part of the trip was paid for by the NRA, according to the report. Brownell was the vice-president of the organization, which has tax-exempt status, from May 2017 to May 2018.

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