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We’re Moving To Japan

December 16, 2015

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Hey everyone, it’s time for a big talk.

We have both exciting news and sad news. After spending seven amazing years in Korea, we’ve decided it’s time for us to pull up our roots and to take the next step. We’re moving to Japan, a decision that was not easy to make, but one that must happen soon if we’re going to explore Japan as freely as we did Korea. When we moved to Korea seven years ago our plan was to stay in Korea for one year, then to move to Japan, then to move somewhere else, and to explore this great big wonderful world. But one year became more than seven, and it seemed like we were going to keep postponing our dreams indefinitely as we got comfortable in Korea.

However, Martina’s condition is getting worse. Much worse. I’ve seen her cry from her pain and frustration more in this one year than I have in the seven years we’ve been married before. Her pain is becoming an issue we can’t avoid. We can’t carry on as we always did. We can try, but if Martina’s health keeps going at this rate then we don’t have as many good days ahead of us as we had originally foreseen.

As I’m writing this today her arm is in a sling because her shoulder has been dislocated for the past ten days, and she can’t put any pressure on her right knee. It’s a sad day for her, one that we could have spent filming if this was last year, but today’s another example of a day that we can’t do much of anything apart from keeping her joints iced and trying to keep her mind off the pain.

Though we have more challenges to face now than before, this doesn’t mean that we’re stopping everything and running to the bushes to shrivel up in pain. Is running to the bushes to shrivel up in pain even a phrase? I don’t know. I just made it up. The point is, we’re still going to make videos, still keep on traveling, still keep on eating everything we can find, still keep on sharing our joys and excitement with you. We’re just going to have a new place to call home.

This time right now, this transitional period, is not us closing a door as much as opening one. This is our spark. This is our kick in the ass. This is our Shia LaBeouf screaming at us to DO ITTTTTTTTTTT!!!!! For us, we have to do what we can while we still can, and so it’s time to start with the first item on our bucket list.

I’m sure some of you have some burning questions, so we hope to answer them below:

Will we still keep the Eatyourkimchi Studio?

This was a really hard decision to make, but as of the end of November, we had to close the EYK Studio. The owner of the building prefers multiple year contracts (rather than a year by year basis) so we had to make the choice in November to re-sign on for two more years, or to make the big move to Japan. And, really, it doesn’t make sense for us to pay rent both in Japan and Korea, especially if we’re not going to be spending as much time in Korea as before.

We loved the studio to pieces, and for those of you that don’t know, over three years ago the Nasties themselves helped us to build it by crowdfunding the space, and it’s something we never forgot even years after the crowdfunding was over. With your support we gutted and re-designed a boring plain office space into the epic EYK Studio which we’ve worked and filmed in for the past three years. We’ll never forget it, many years down the road, and we’ll constantly remember how special of a place it was to us. Good thing we made videos to remember the place! ;)

We filmed kpop interviews and did funny skits with UKISS, uBEAT, Crayon Pop, Eric Nam, Amber, MFBTY, K.Will, Clazziquai, Neon Bunny, and many local Korean Indie bands, had epic Wonderful Treasure Finds and serious TL;DRs, and just had a generally great work location for the members of the Eatyourkimchi Team. Also, before closing the doors to the studio we took every single piece of fan art you’ve given us, both on tour or via the mail, and it will be accompanying us to Japan. Finally, keep your eyes peeled for the purple velvet kpop couch that will be living on in Korea through our friends Nic and Hugh of the Mykoreanhusband blog. They’re putting it to good use now :D

What does this mean for the rest of the Eatyourkimchi Team?

For starters, we told them about our decision to move to Japan many months ago, before the July Meet Your Kimchi Tour, so we gave them a lot of time to prepare for the transition and so that they had time to find new jobs.

Now, something awkward we have to ask all you lovely Nasties: some of you are new to the Nasty Family and don’t know about the Studio or the EYK Crew (hi new people!), but there are some of you have been with us for a while and have seen the Eatyourkimchi Team grow. We ask that those of you that follow Soozee and Leigh on social media give them the privacy they deserve to move onto new jobs and new lives.

When we started following them on their personal social media accounts years ago, we didn’t realize how much their personal lives would be affected. We literally had no experience with the impact this would have on our friends and family before. But, since they started appearing in our videos, they’ve been stopped on the streets and had lots of people follow them on social media. It’s taken away their ability to post or talk freely about whatever they want, and NONE of us saw it coming. We were really sorry this happened to them because to be honest, they were never super comfortable with the loss of the anonymity, which is a really scary thing to lose if you’re not prepared for it. We learned from their experiences, and so you might have noticed that we didn’t make announcement videos for the new members of the Eatyourkimchi Team for this reason.

Rose – who was our web developer – on the other hand, is planning for an exciting career in the Korean entertainment industry. You might have already seen her dancing in some kpop videos, and she has told us she doesn’t care if you follow her; in fact, she encourages you to follow her on social media. Go Rose go! As for Soozee and Leigh, we’re not asking you to stop following them, we’re just saying please don’t send them messages asking them about Eatyourkimchi, or make them uncomfortable about it. Please let them adjust to the new chapter of their lives. We have loved working with the whole Eatyourkimchi Team, and I’m sooooo happy we have videos online to look back on and to laugh at all our epic times together. Couldn’t have wished for a better team of people, we really lucked out. It’s been a hard few months without them around and we miss them a whole lot, but we’ll come back to Korea to visit for sure!

What does this mean for our videos?

Well, we love food, so you know we’ll have lots of food videos to film in Japan. Udon. Bento boxes. COCOCURRY!!!! There’s lots of things we haven’t shared with you on video, lots of things we haven’t eaten yet that we can’t wait to experience and share. And Japan is loaded with Wonderful Treasures to Find. That won’t be an issue. And we’ll also have new adventures to share, tons of things which I’m sure I can’t even imagine yet, things that I don’t know that exist. We’re excited at all of the possibilities! I really hope you can come along for the ride with us. Martina is also determined to share her Japanese language learning experience too, something we didn’t do when we first came to Korea.

What does this mean for the Eatyourkimchi website?

We’ll be in Japan, right? So why call it Eatyourkimchi, you might be wondering? Well, I don’t think we’re going to change the name, even though we own eatyoursushi.com (and have for many years now). I mean, we’ve been in Korea for seven years now. It’s a part of us. It’s changed us in so many ways. Eatyourkimchi, too, is a part of us; we’ll always perceive the world through the filter of our life experiences, and to say that we’ll experience the world unaffected by our Korean experiences would be a lie. We’ve been here for many major formative years of our lives; almost our entire married life. And it’s not something that we can shake off. We won’t try to. And Martina is preparing to pack a suitcase filled with Korean cooking ingredients for the dire hankerings we know we’ll have for Korean food.

What does that mean for You Are Here Cafe?

Well, it’s something we’re not going to be able to be part of. If one day we open another small shop by ourselves, we’ll have a wealth of experience from the cafe to help us out, but we’re not going to be in Korea anymore, so we won’t be of much help there. We’ll be back in Korea from time to time, for sure, and we’d love to stop by the cafe and see what’s happening, but we won’t be able to contribute as much as before.

How, exactly, are we going to be able to be in Japan?

Well, do you remember ages ago we did that Stalking Vampire video where we both got bitten and turned into creepy vampires? Well, the people we filmed it with, SQUASHfilms, are part of a network called Breaker Incorporated. We know some of the people over at Breaker, spoke with them a bunch, and they’re cool people who are interested in working with us on some new ideas. They also have a studio space in Harajuku where we’re planning on filming a new segment! SO EXCITED!!!

So when are you moving to Japan?

We’re in the final stages now of working out all our documents, we still have to find an apartment, but it looks like we’ll be in Japan for late January/February. We’ll be sure to document our whole moving experience for all of you that are curious. We still have to pack, and Spudgy & Meemers have a ton of paperwork since Japan is a rabies free country. Guess we’ll have to make a new apartment tour! :)

So I hope we’ve answered all your questions. Even though everything has been going really well for us with our business in Korea, we have to try to follow our dreams while we still can. We’ll miss Korea dearly since it has been home to us for so many years, but I don’t think of this as goodbye to Korea. We’ll be living so darn close by it will be easy to come visit. We love you guys and can’t wait to share new food and adventures with you! If there is something you really want us to film in Japan, let us know in the comment section below and we’ll get our thinking hats on for this new chapter of our lives.

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  1. Wow, what a fantastic new adventure! My original interest in Japanese food is what led me to discover you guise about a year and a half ago. I was hunting for ramen recipes and you guys had just posted your How to Eat Ramen Like a Pro video, I was enthralled with the idea of spicy Korean ramen, and I loved your guy’s video style, I immediately watched all your past videos I could find…lol. Because of you guys I have discovered a love of Korean food history and culture, that I had forgotten I had wanted to understand more when I was younger. We adopted my brother in the 80’s from S. Korea and as he grew up he never had an interest so I kinda pushed it to a back burner and focused more on learning about Japan which I was also interested in. Thanks to you guys I am saving my pennies for my first trip to Korea. I can’t wait to watch you guys explore and learn more about Japan. Good luck and sorry for the babbling comment

    2 years ago
    • Don’t apologize. Thank you for commenting, for being a Premium Nasty (aww yeah!) and for sticking with us for over a year. And, more importantly, thank you for the support on this move :D

      2 years ago
  2. I am sad that this chapter is ending, but uuber excited for you guys that you are making a new start, and are still wanting to share it with us. I will continue to support and be a huge fan of whatever you guys are doing. #eyk no more #drinkyoursake forever!!!! :)

    2 years ago
  3. I don’t remember when, but I know the first Eat Your Kimchi video I saw was the one where Martina made ramen and she imitated Nigella’s accent XD And the video was already old when I found it, but it was so funny, that I thought “I have to follow them!”. Even my mom knows about you, because I talk about you. I love you guys, I wish you the best. I’ll be looking forward to see your videos in Japan!

    2 years ago
  4. I am so excited for you guys! I have watched your videos since you were trying to work the washing machine. I was super ecstatic to meet in person on the Meetyourkimchi tour in Atalanta. I can’t wait to watch your videos of Japan and wherever else you guys end up!

    2 years ago
  5. Excited for the next chapter of your lives! And I did not realize Japan was a rabies free country. The more you know!

    2 years ago
  6. Wow I’m so excited for you guys! I lived in Japan for a year and. Half and I loved it. I was just thinking about how next year I’m going to Japan and I wanted to visit Korea so I was going to ask you guys about good places to go haha. But! Japan is awesome too! If you ever need a Japanese interpreter let me know! :D
    Good luck and travel safe!

    2 years ago
  7. I’m kinda teary after reading this and watching the video. You’ve been with me for the past 5 years. You pushed me to follow my dreams despite of the fear. So A BIG APPLAUSE! A BIG BOW! to you guys. Keep living as you want to. Keep dreaming. Keep us with you. You have your nasties for sure in Korea, in Japan, in Argentina ^^. I regret not taking my time to visit you back in 2012 when visited Korea. But maybe I can meet you in Japan next Spring! Martina, Simon, eatyourkimchi, fighting! with love (now I’m crying!)Lorena

    2 years ago
  8. To be honest, I’m definitely going to be sad that you guys are leaving Korea.

    BUT!! I’m EVEN MORE EXCITED that you guys are exploring once more!! Follow your dreams!! I’ll always be a part of the Nasty family no matter where you guys head to next. I can’t wait for more adventures with you guys behind my screen!!

    Hopefully, you guys will be settled by next summer because I’ll be visiting Japan and I’ve always wanted to meet you guys~

    2 years ago
  9. Simon, Martina, I love you guys! and it makes me so sad that when I finally am going to Korea, you all are leaving! But I completely understand!

    My sister and I have fibromyalia and my best friend and her entire family have EDS. I have had to brush her sister’s hair and dress her because she just can’t anymore. So you got to follow your dreams while you can! And from one invisible illness sufferer to another: WE GOT THIS!!!! FIGHTING!! and Simon you are so awesome! so sweet for always being their for your wife when some husbands wouldn’t be. That is a quality I look for and need in my future husband!

    Love you guys! I’ll keep cheering for you from this side of the screen! ^^

    2 years ago
    • Yeah I’m starting to have those days now where I can’t lift my makeup brushes to my face. *SIGH* BUT I’LL NEVER GIVE UP!!! NO WAY! Simon might just have to become a makeup artist…hahahah.

      2 years ago
  10. This is crazy guys. I found your original videos waaay back when you first started posting them. I was looking for information at 2AM on google about moving to Korea and stumbled upon a tiny black back grounded blog that referenced one of the few videos you had uploaded at the time. Your information and your love for Korea and love for life helped me make life decisions that ultimately helped me get me where I am today. When I first started watching I was unemployed and was not currently enrolled in university. I’ve since completed college, have visited Korea and have a great job. I continue to follow and support you guys in every thing you do. Thanks for helping make a positive influence in my life back when I was ready to give up, and here’s to many many more years together :].

    PS:Maybe Ill try sending that hard cover Shazaam compendium to you guys when your in Japan. Maybe their post system wont bust it in half and send it back lol.

    2 years ago
  11. I discovered your guy’s channel two years ago because I had been watching similar channels only based in Japan. I never had a real interest in Korea but you guys have changed that! I hope that one day I’ll be able to visit it. When ever I’m having a really bad day with my depression, I’ll go on your channel and watch videos. You guys have helped me get out and try to be as positive as I can on those bad days. I just wanted to say thank you for that.

    2 years ago
  12. I have been following you from your first vid and I am excited to see you grow in a new place and environment. People and places change over time and it is important to enjoy them as they are now and what they become in the future. Your videos inspired me to travel to new places.. I went to Japan and China this year and I plan on going to S.Korea next year and Singapore the year after that. Thank You…. don’t ever feel discouraged about reaching for the star… or Japan for that matter. Love always!

    2 years ago
  13. I’m shocked, but I’m not sure if it’s in a good or bad way. Probably a bit of both.

    I think it’s great you decided to go forward with your dreams, especially with Martina’s condition (though it breaks my heart to read that she’s been getting worse). If time is slipping away faster than you’d planned, then make the most of what you have. On the other hand I have pretty much always associated you with South Korea so this will be an odd transition to make, though I think less odd than if you’d moved to Kenya or something.

    I hope everyone associated with the studio will be able to find a happy place to be and that you’ll also find one in Japan. I’m a little sad to see you go so early after I’ve landed in South Korea, but maybe that’d give me an excuse to go to Japan (though my finances might not agree). I’m looking forward to more awesome videos! Not just about food, but about life in Japan!

    All the best to all of you guys! Stay safe, healthy, funny and happy!

    2 years ago
  14. I’ve been wondering when you would make the move! Though my own heart is in Korea, I have lived in Japan too, and I am very excited for you! I am excited to see what new wonders you will find and share with us! Best of luck to Soozee and Leigh. Change and adventure is path to happiness …
    VIVA LA SOBA!

    2 years ago
  15. I am so excited for you guys! Most of the time, change is a good thing. I have seen you both change in these past 2 years and grow exponentially. My fiancee and I are going to be in Japan on our honeymoon and we would love to say hi!!! Can’t wait to see where you guys go with this new adventure! Best of luck moving!

    2 years ago
  16. So sorry to hear about Martina’s health and the closing of this huge chapter of your life but I wish you guys luck and lots of success and happiness in your new life.I know how difficult and scary it can be to completely move to a new place and start again. I have been watching your videos for about 5years and always enjoyed them. As a lover of things related to both Korea and Japan, I know that I will enjoy the upcoming new videos.
    Good Luck guys!!!! <3

    2 years ago
  17. Firstly I pray that Martinas condition gets better and so she could enjoy her life to the fullest!! Have been watching u guys for 3 years now and will be in the future! Hope life gives u surprises and adventures!! And lastly we nasties will always support u <3

    2 years ago
  18. It is very sad to hear that you guys will be leaving Korea, but at the sametime I am so happy for the two of you for going after your dreams! I am sooooooooooo thankful for having had the opportunity to meet the two of you at the opening day of the You are Here Cafe~! (You guys signed my bank book ^-^ ) It looked as if this was a very hard video to make, but thank you for being so honest with us. I love you guys, and I KNOW millions of other NASTIES do too! Can’t wait to see what new videos you guys come up with! Please take care~! Love you guys (and Spudgy and Meemers of course!) <3

    2 years ago
  19. I find myself surprised and not at the same time. I knew you guys would eventually leave Korea it was just a matter of when. I’m also super excited and sad at the same time. I’ve followed you guys for years now and so I’m sad that you guys will be leaving Korea and the EYK gang splitting but I know everyone has to move forward with their lives. I’m excited to see more of your adventures in Japan! I’m sure you will both have awesome things to show us. I dream of going to Korea and Japan and hopefully I will be able to get there in the future. Keep strong! I’m rooting for you guys! :D

    2 years ago
  20. I wish you guys and the rest of the crew the best of luck with your new adventures. I hope japan is everything you’re looking for!

    2 years ago
  21. I for one am super excited to see Japanese FAPFAPs and… WANJs? WANT(okyo)s?

    2 years ago
  22. As sad as this makes me (since I was gonna look for the studio to take a pic when I visited Seoul next April….lol jk) I am happy you are reaching for your dreams and traveling to new places! I hope you create more wonderful memories and meet more wonderful people who inspire you to be you… as people, as a couple and as Eat Your Kimchi… or whatever you future name will be… Love always from Florida!

    2 years ago
  23. We Nasties have your back!

    2 years ago
  24. I’ve been watching your videos for six years now. You guys have a been such an inspiration in my life, and the reason I visited Korea (from Canada, eh) by myself! I’m so sad to see you two go but I can’t wait to see more exciting adventures. Good luck with your move Simon and Martina, we’ll be waiting for you on the other side. <3

    2 years ago
  25. As someone who’s been following you guys for 5/6years it’s great that you got to explore so much of South Korea especially the food ahaha. Now it’s Japan’s turn! :3 I hope the transition isn’t too hard on you!! EYK to the future~!

    2 years ago
  26. i usually never make a post on your videos although i literally have watched all of them, but since this is a huge announcement i decided to break my silence. I followed you guys way back when you guys did music Mondays weekly, and did the whole dances of kpop move year review and at that time i was just started to get interested in kpop, and it was nice seeing some one talking/reviewing/introducing new kpop songs that i end up enjoying listening to. And as i watch your vidoes i see you guys as almost friends that i never seen face to face or talk to personally but yet still able to connect and relate to. it’s wierd, and just wanted to thank your hard work and dedication, it must be tough coming to this decision considering how hard you guys worked to make the eatyourkimchi studio a reality and the you are here cafe. But it is for the better. I hope you guy the best.

    2 years ago
    • I also started watching you guys back when you did the music mondays in your officetel back in Bucheon. After following EYK for about 5 years now, I’ve seen so many changes and now I somehow see you as friends even though we’ve never met before. You guys made me discover all kinds of music (especially korean pop & indie) and I’m also blaming you for making me like so many groups, even when I didn’t want to xD. But I’m also grateful that you made more open to other kinds of music/cultures/life/etc.

      I already knew about your plans of living in Japan one day, and I was kind of afraid that day would come, I guess I also felt comfortable watching you do fun stuff in Korea for so long. Maybe I’m also addicted to your videos (I should really stop stalking you guys on twitter, its already affecting my procrastination level haha). So yes, I feel sad, but I’m happy that you guys are going to keep up with your dreams before it’s too late (to apologize~).

      There’s also one thing that I want to get off my chest once and for all (and sorry if its getting annoying). Although there was a lot of angry kpop fans, I pretty much became a big kpop fan because of you guys so I want to thank you guys about that. I mean like if you didn’t advertise bts/mamamoo/etc. that much on your radio show, I would probably not try their music until much later. Same thing for indie artists :)
      Speaking of which, does that mean that it is the end of you radio show? aww man :o

      Anyways, I wish you the best of luck on your new adventures. (I also hope that you will never forget about losing your pant in slow motion. I’ll definitely make Simon sing that if you ever tour in Canada again.)

      2 years ago
  27. I can’t wait to watch your videos and see you experience new things! Congratulations on living your dream and I wish you the best!

    2 years ago
  28. This is so surreal for me. I’ve been following you guys since about 2010, and EYK was one of the biggest motivators in my desire to come to Korea. In fact, I just moved to Korea in March, and you guys were one of my best resources for motivation, encouragement, and support (especially when it came to figuring things out here). Even though I’m going to miss all of your videos on Korea, I’m also excited that you guys are moving to another country that I am extremely curious about.

    Thank you both so much for all these years of wonderful videos. I hope you guys have a fantastic time in Japan, and I can’t wait to see where you go from here ^_^

    2 years ago
    • I’m so glad you finally made it over here! Thanks for watching; I’m glad we could help you figure things out!

      2 years ago
  29. So incredibly stoked for your new adventures!

    I’ve learned so much about Korea from you guys and can’t wait to learn lots about Japan. :)

    2 years ago
  30. How exciting! Looking forward to seeing how you guys develop your new adventure!

    2 years ago
  31. Wishing you luck and success from the other side of the world. I look forward to a lot more cool content and sexy food shots (COCOCURRY!)

    2 years ago
  32. Thanks for the many years of laughter and I can’t wait for many more to come. I will be supporting you guys! Martina, I hope you recover soon! I haven’t had the chance to visit Korea yet, but I am visiting Japan soon! =D

    2 years ago
  33. Oh my goodness guys. Im so sad and at the same time so proud and happy for you. Of course, Soozee and Leigh deserve their privacy, I completely understand. Martina, I really hope you find a terrific doctor in Japan, I pray you feel better soon. Simon, thank you for taking such good care of your wife and the Eat Your Kimchi Korea team. Japan is going to be a new adventure, but never forget that you can always go back home. I really wish you and Martina, Leigh, Soozee and Rose the best of luck and blessings.
    Love,
    Grisel

    2 years ago
    • I really hope we can find a doctor that helps. We’ve had very bad luck in Korea with doctors. Really bad…

      2 years ago
      • Hopefully Japan has more (and better) doctors to offer! I’m super excited for your big move! Please remake your first video in a restauraunt in Japan. And have a video on how to work Japanese toilets, how to use Japanese transit, awkward delivery food ordering, and maybe a video on the cute old taxi drivers Martina mentioned in a rent video. So many possibilities!!!

        2 years ago
      • Wait actually I found some resources for you… Not sure if links show up but I can email them if you like. Do links work here?

        2 years ago
      • My friends who live in Japan say that getting stronger medicine is very difficult. I really really wish you good luck. I hope you do some research and maybe are able to find doctors with experience there before you leave! They have very strict laws on medication from outside of the country… I’m worried that maybe you won’t be able to get the medicine you require. I know they use a lot of alternative medicine but I don’t know if that helps any… good luck ;-;

        2 years ago
  34. Happy that you guys will get to start over again, but also will miss the awesome memories from Korea~! Does this mean the EYK crew will dismantle? :/

    2 years ago
  35. I am so sorry to hear about Martina’s condition but every gray cloud has a silver lining, SO YOU’RE MOVING TO JAPAN! Which city have you decided to move to?

    2 years ago
  36. Wow wow wow. Wow.
    It seems like a bit of an exaggeration to say that this is a shock, considering I’m just a fan. But it really is. But it’s also very exciting!
    You guys have spent so much time in Korea, and you’ve covered so much about the country and opened it up for people that would otherwise have no idea. And as great as it was, it really must be time to move on. Y’all will fit in great in Japan, I just know it. Haven’t had the chance to watch the video just yet, and I feel like I’m basically reiterating what this entire post says, but I just had to comment.

    I’m super excited to see what kind of adventures you guys have in Japan.
    The language. The food. The Sailor Moon. The FOOD.

    2 years ago
  37. You go guys!!
    This is an awesome change and I can’t wait to see Japan through the eyes of Simon and Martina. I hope you guys know all the Nasties will stay and support you through this huge change in your life!
    Martina I hope you will feel better soon and we all hope for the improvement of your health.
    Keep up the great work guys! You have changed tons of peoples lives from you studio in Korea and you will continue to do so in Japan!
    YOU GO GUYS!

    2 years ago
  38. Wow, big, big news and changes. So cool! I wish all the best for the new adventures :D Japan have so many weird stuff to film! hahahahah

    2 years ago
  39. Wow. Wow. Wow. Also, wow. And did I mention, wow?

    Big news, kind of sad (Martina! Hugs! Gentle ones!), very shocking, but I am personally super-excited to follow your adventures in Japan. Thanks for being upfront with us about this, and anticipating and answering all of these questions.

    Best of luck with all the moving prep and actual move–I’ll be praying for you guys!

    2 years ago
  40. Yay for new adventures! Follow your dreams as far as you can and the Nastys will follow right along with you!

    2 years ago