Monday, March 29, 2010

Changing Lives

It was a last minute plan. My cousin's husband works for Smart, and he got free tickets to the Changing Lives concert featuring Timbaland, JoJo and Justin Timberlake. Since it was free, I texted my friends, Mariko and Trency. It was funny because my cousin texted me and told me that the concert was for Sunday, but Trency texted me and told me it was Saturday (March 27). I had no idea. Muntikan pa akong magkamali! Thanks to Trency she told me right away. But Mariko wasn't able to join us anymore! :(

On to the concert venue at the MOA Concert Grounds. MOA was buzzing with activities that night. Earth Hour was at the front, where the globe is. Then there was the concert. People were milling around, and can I just say that the traffic along Buendia was horrible. I had to park at the HK Sun Plaza, along Macapagal, and walk all the way. Darn traffic!

Anyway, the show was awesome. Trency and I felt like we were in a club. Kulang na lang the alcohol haha! We danced to Timbaland's cool tunes. I'm not a Timbaland fan, but I think his collaboration with other artists is what makes him popular. It was funny how he can't dance because of his size. He was huge! But I give him a B+ for trying to make whatever it was he was doing, look like "dancing".

But I feel sad for JoJo. She felt like a major extra, like a saling kitkit to the show. She sang like a song and a half. She sang pa Too Little, Too Late which was an old song of hers. She tried to get the crowd to sing along, but I think it was an epic fail. Poor kid. But she was gorgeous! At 19, that kid has reached the pinnacle of success. She's got a great voice, but too bad her stint in the concert was just way too short!

But the long wait for Justin Timberlake was all worth it. And my gosh! JT's beat boxing talent was to die for!! When he spoke to the crowd he was like bopek, but his singing voice is really good! JT I suggest less talk, more singing! It was like a voice of 10 year old boy haha!

Justin sang songs like My Love, Cry Me A River, Summer Love, and Lovestoned. Sexy Back and Promiscuous, together with the fireworks, made one great finale! :)

And oh! The keyboard playing was really sexy! :p That guy is really just talented! Definitely, the most successful N-Sync boy! He just has the goods to back it all up! And the! Justin, I am now a fan! :D And to Jessica Biel, you are one lucky crazy ass woman for having him! Damn!

Here are some pics I got from Didn't bring my cam cos I thought it was bawal. But then people had DSLR's with them. Argh!

The concert ended at exactly 12MN. It was my first concert since 2000, a decade ago. And as funny as it is, it was The Moffatts' concert at The Folks Art Theater (yeah yeah yeah! Let's all laugh at the fangirl!). I was also with Trency at that time. Funny!

Trency and I were so tired we couldn't even talk and react about the concert. We just dragged our bodies towards the parking. It was a fun night! Seeing Justin Timberlake perform is going to be on my 2010 highlights! :D

Thanks to my cousin and Smart! :)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Missing Palawan! (part 2)

I suddenly remembered I have this pending part 2 blog for Palawan. I dunno, I suddenly missed Palawan. Maybe because it's summer, and we weren't even in Palawan for summer. It was October, so it was weird to be on a beach getaway.

I guess what I'll be sharing in this blog, besides my other misadventures, adventures, and opinion, are my travels while I was still a travel writer/photographer. So for my first "sharing" on my travels, it will be on Puerto Princesa, Palawan. And this is the 2nd part.

The PAX Experience Day 1
After our very enjoyable and relaxed stay at the Microtel, we packed our bags and moved to The Legend Palawan. This hotel is run by the Kings, and is said to be one of the most popular in the Puerto Princesa City.

Although I must say that I loved Microtel more. The Legend has darker interiors, even in the rooms, so it looked sad and a bit...blah...sorry! But their tour package, makes them unbeatable, as far as I'm concerned.

Our first day with The PAX Experience, was spent island hopping in Honda Bay. It was a dark, windy, cloudy day, and the waves rocked the boat like crazy. But it was fun! We went to the two islands being developed by The Legend. We swam around and saw gazillions of fish. I swear it was love! Even when we were shaking like crazy from the cold wind, we enjoyed every single moment of it!

Jer, Chuchie and Me, getting ready for our Honday Bay island hopping :)

Dark clouds looming over

An artsy fartsy shot from our kubo

That night, we were treated to a very special dinner by resident manager, Mr. Nani Cruz. A proud La Sallian himself, we were welcomed whole-heartedly. Geovy King was a schoolmate of mine in DLSU-Manila, so yeah small world. After the dinner, this was when the fun actually started! We were asked to sing with a live band in their restaurant named Salo. It was cool yeah! :) I sang "Someday We'll Know" and I was Mandy Moore for 3 minutes! :p Thanks to Jer for this pic! :D

The PAX Experience Day 2
Day 2 was our last day in Palawan and we had to squeeze in this activity. We had to travel like about an 1.5 hours to the port where your Underground River adventures begin. It was an enjoyable scenic drive. We kept stopping along the way to take scenic pictures of the place. Here are some of the pics I took.

Where the mountain met the sea

An uphill climb and our kuya driver

The laidback countryside

When we got to the port, everything looked absolutely stunning. There was a beach right beside the port, and its sand was pure white. It was breathtakingly beautiful! But we were excited as hell to get to the the Underground River. My Mom who had been to Palawan said it was beautiful. But when we were inside, I got scared! It was dark, the water was murky (the boatmen said it was like that because it had just rained), and it smelled in some parts. I sat at the dulo of the boat, all alone, so it wasn't exactly fun! I had this feeling that something was gonna come out of the water and just grab me. The water was literally just inches from the boat. I still hope that the Underground River gets to be included in the new 7 wonders or something. Anyway here are the pics from our Underground River adventure.

The beautiful coast with its coconut trees-lined beach

Getting ready for our boat ride to the Underground River

"The Holy Family" inside the cave

With our fellow cavers

The light at the end of the tunnel

The elusive bayawak

Happy tourists :D

It was a great trip! If I had the money I would definitely go back to Palawan. But maybe in Coron. I made a promise that I'd definitely go back to Palawan. If you guys are having 2nd thoughts on going to Palawan, stop thnking, just go and you'll never be sorry! :)

Monday, March 22, 2010

March is the Shizzzznniiittt!!

I keep looking at the calendar, and it says that until Wednesday next week, MARCH PA RIN! I can't help but think that March is the great hindrance to all the things I'd be doing this summer, specifically during the months of April and May.

Here's the lowdown on my summer agenda:

April 1-2, 2010: Coconut Hills Beach Resort, Bauan, Batangas

My close kabarkada in college, Mariko, and I would be driving to one of the most accessible beaches. If you said Batangas, well yeah, I guess it's a given haha! :D But anyway what we're really after is the surf, not-too-much sun, good food, good company, and total relaxation. Although I really wouldn't bet my life that it'll be 100% relaxing since it's the Holy Week, I still feel it's going to be a good trip. Mariko and I had a hard time finding a resort with room vacancies. So I guess this would suffice for an overnight beach trip. Hopefully for me, there would be nice spots to take pictures of! :)

April 18, 2010: Earth Run 2010, The Fort

I think I've blogged about my love for running several times already. And since I jog almost everyday, what better way to test my endurance than to join a fun run with a cause. Since our company is one of the sponsors, Chuchie, a former officemate of mine, and I decided to join the Earth Run 2010. I wish I could endure a 5k run, but since I'm fairly new at running, we decided to run in the 3k category. I'm soooo excited! I keep wondering how fast I could finish the 3k, I can almost hear Chuchie motivating me when I stop to take a breather. I've been preparing for this run for quite some time, so hopefully, it ends well for me and Chuchieness!! :)

April 30 - May 2, 2010: Alona Tropical Beach Resort, Panglao, Bohol

This is the highlight of my summer! I can feel it in my bones! To celebrate our barkada's 10 years of friendship, me, Amanda and Trency planned to go farther than Batangas or Pangasinan for our annual trip. It's our first time to be on a plane together. And we've prepared for this trip since November of 2009. We all saved our hard-earned money just so we could push through with this trip. And after some mishaps with our schedules, we finally got a date, booked our flights and our hotel, and now we're just waiting for April 30 to come by! We can't stop talking about it! We are just soooo psyched! :)

Oh! And it's an opportunity to do photography again!! :D

May 21-22, 2010: Maribago Bluewater Beach Resort, Mactan Island, Cebu

My cousin's getting married in Cebu on May 20. After all the wedding jitters, Mom and I decided to make the most of our Cebu trip by booking an overnight beach trip to Maribago. I've heard good things about this resort, and I am sooo psyched! I've been to Cebu before, but haven't gotten the chance to visit their beaches, so now's my chance to soak in Cebu's clear blue waters!! :) And as usual, I am gearing up for a photography extravaganza!! :D

So probably after this summer, I'd be as dark as... as...I don't want to be mean hahaha! But I'd probably be as dark as an Ita after all this basking in the sun! But I love it! With the people trying desperately hard to get fairer, I am working on my tan! I love being bronze! I love the tan lines that come with it too! I've always been a water baby, and these trips to the beach is just something I am looking forward to!

And because I am sooo excited, I already bought two new bikinis from SM. If you want good looking bikinis that's not too expensive, I suggest you gals visit SM Department Store and look for their new brand COCOCABAƱA! I heard they're sponsoring one of our activities in our ETC Boracay event. They're good! You can buy dresses and cover-up, and bikinis for less than P600. I swear it was heaven! I plan on buying another pair for Bohol and Cebu! :D


Wednesday, March 17, 2010


"Manakawan ka na, huwag ka lang masunugan".

I've always heard people say that, but I never gave it much importance. I have friends whose homes have been ravaged by fire. I remember in St. Scho when I was in grade school, we were asked to donate clothes to the family of a classmate because they weren't able to save anything. There has also been an instance when I was kid, when we still lived in the house in Sampaloc, there was fire but it was like a couple of streets down. But I remember we took some of the stuff out of the house so we can just run and save a couple of things. We were saved, and that was the most important thing.

But last Monday, March 15, the fire was just too close. I was at work, when I got a call from my distressed Mom. She said there was fire in the house selling water, the thing was that house was right beside our apartment block. I said I was coming home right away.

I was driving like a mad woman. Images of our houses getting burned, and the fire fighters wrestling with the flames, danced in my mind. I was on the verge of tears, and I was praying incoherent stuff to God. When I got to Pasong Tamo, I was racing with the fire trucks, and it was so nerve wrecking because you knew exactly where they were going.

The whole stretch of Kamagong and Estrella Sts. were blocked off by huge red fire trucks. I was thinking the fire must have been huge because there were like 10 fire trucks waiting along Estrella, and around 10 more waiting in Kamagong. Our street, Tanguile, was almost flooded with murky water when I got there. I will never forget the heat emanating from our place. Smoke was billowing everywhere. The fire fighters walking around the area seemed so surreal to me. When I saw Mom, and I saw they were ok, I calmed down. The fire was 2 houses down. There's this 4-unit apartment block, and it was the one that got burned. The firemen had already called "fire out" when I got there. Thank God!

And, it was through times of trouble where I see camaraderie among us Filipinos. Sweaty fire fighters sat on the sidewalk, and people from the neighboring houses came out offering them water. Mom and I bought Coke for them. It was really nice seeing that. You always see good things happen during bad times! Too bad I wasn't able to get pictures of that. I was also busy giving Coke to them. :)

A big thank you to God for saving us. And also, a big thank you to the noble and heroic volunteer fire men and women, whose quick response to the call contained the fire in that spot alone. There were houses right beside that apartment unit and they were all saved. :) I'd specifically thank the fire protection units of Makati, maraming salamat po talaga! Some of the volunteers came as far as Marikina and San Juan. Others were from Leveriza, Quiapo, Paco, and the always-present Filipino-Chinese Volunteers. Thank you! :)

To the families who lost everything to the fire, I pray that they get the strength to rebuild their homes. :)

And yesterday we got word that the fire started from 3 men who was attempting to steal stuff from one of the apartment units that was already abandoned by its former tenants. They left a crap load of basura in their unit, and the men were rummaging around it. They were smoking and obviously one of them threw it in the basura pile. Since it was hot, it caught fire and before they knew it the fire was too big for them to put out themselves. Our neighbors were telling the fire fighters that shortly before that fire got out of control, they saw 3 men running away from the unit.

Hopefully this doesn't happen to anyone else! Let's be more vigilant, especially this time of year when temperature can really rise. It's March and it's Fire Prevention Month, so let's do something to really prevent fire. :)

Monday, March 15, 2010


I found the fight title exaggerated. Since I work for Solar Entertainment, as early as January I've been seeing posters of the match, posted in all of our floors. In uber RED, bold and dominating fonts it said: THE EVENT: PACQUIAO VERSUS CLOTTEY. Our Sports people have hyped up the promotion. Of course, it's going to be another fight of our Pambansang Kamao! Plus it will generate loads of income once again for our great company! :)

So come March 14, 2010, everybody was up early to watch the delayed telecast over GMA. Sorry Sky Cable doesn't carry any of our Solar Sports channels. So we had to make do with the delayed telecast, and since I forgot to buy tickets for our pay-per-view, pwede na rin right? The end results would all be the same anyway! :)

But the fight wasn't as we all expected. Clottey didn't even put up a freakin' fight! I wasn't expecting a knockout by Pacquiao, since sportscasters have reported that the guy was described as "someone who didn't get hurt". So a knockout was a long shot for Manny. It was such a drag! It seemed that Clottey was scared to have his already messed up face, messed up some more!

So a big, big congratulations to Manny Pacquiao! As always you have done the Filipinos all over the globe PROUD! Please don't run for Congress anymore! The boxing ring is way different from the Congressional/political ring. They will never coincide...EVER! Stop listening to the people who tell you to run! Huwag ng magpauto, makontento na lang sa kung anong meron ka!

Anyway, CONGRATS MANNY! WAPAKMAN ka talaga! :D

Thursday, March 4, 2010

When You've Stopped....

The title of the blog is a free-for-all, end-it-yourself, thing. But I'd like to end it by: "When You've Stopped Doing The Thing You Love The Most It Makes You Feel Sad". And I guess everybody would have to agree on this.

Out of boredom and vanity I tried to Google my name. So I typed my whole name and VOILA! Besides seeing my cousins' names on the pages (since they're doctors) most of the entries that came out had my name on it - the bulk of it came from the Wordpress blog of the publishing company I used to work in, while there were other entries from other websites like that of the Mu Sigma Phi fraternity.

I was surprised to see my articles. Like a kid opening his/her presents on Christmas day, I started going through them one-by-one. I couldn't help texting my Mom about it. But the happy and proud moment was gone as soon as it came.

As I was reading the articles, I realized how much I miss writing articles. I'm still a writer here at Solar, but it's not the same as what I used to write. Don't get me wrong, I have finally opened my mind to this new job, and personally I feel like I'm doing really good. The thing that made my 2.5 years stint at FAME special was that it wasn't just an ordinary magazine. It was a medical magazine. Attending medical conventions and press conferences with the secretary of health was the usual thing. Interviews and photo shoots with doctors make up most of the editorial job. Reading medical journals on the latest breakthroughs was a common thing everyday. I thought I would never survive, but then, I did.

This was what I texted my Mom: "I just feel sad that I don't get to write articles anymore since it's what I really want to do. But it's nice to see the articles after several months. I remember the days when all I do is complain about the non-stop work but it was fulfilling because you were to do so much and survive it all."

I may not have worked in the perfect working environment, but for me writing was perfect. I still contribute for FAME, but it's not as fulfilling as being a staff writer. I feel like it's half-baked because I don't get to take photos, call up the doctor to make an appointment or something. I really enjoyed going to those medical conferences and learning stuff about cardiology, pathology, neurology, and all the ogy's of medicine. I guess I became a geek in that way. I never had background on medicine, but what I had was background on writing. And to me it was enough to fuel my medical writing. Interviewing those doctors was always a treat. And I got to learn a whole lot of stuff on medicine. I got to know the things that only doctors or nurses should know, and it was cool! To me my medical writing stint was a blast. I knew that not everybody could've done that, but I did, and it made it even more special. It was fun when my cousins who are doctors got to be part of my articles and they enjoyed reading it.

The plus factor came when Travel Plus was launched. I became head writer for a while, and it was cool to get to go to places, stay in hotels for free, eat food for free, and tour for free. I could've lived that life, and I could use a pretty good vacation. Traveling with my friends in FAME was always a treat. To us it was our well-deserved R&R. And damn do I miss it!

So my advice, don't ever stop doing what you love to do. If it has started to bring you down or burn you out, try something to take your mind of it. Do something different to make you miss it, but at the same time make you come back. BUT NEVER EVER LET GO. You will only end up either feeling sorry for yourself, and you will always end up regretting that day you turned your back on it. Do you want to live in regret? Well, who does!

But at the back of my mind, I still wish things would turnaround in FAME. It's a perfect place to learn the ropes in editorial work. I am sure as hell proud of the things I learned there. But it's sad to see how things work inside. I'm praying for an improvement. And I hope God grants it! It has potential but it doesn't grow because of certain things I don't want to mention. Well, you can't have it all.

Right now, I'm just really torn between staying in a better company but not doing what I really want, and going back to a _ _ _ _ _ _ company but I get to do what I really love. Shit! Who ever said that making decisions were easy! I guess it's not when you're getting older and have to think about the future.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Metro...Connected


Ever since I got my car in March 2007 my public transportation use has been very, very limited. My work is super near my house that on Thursdays (my number coding day) I take a 30 minute walk from the office along Tordesillas to our house in San Antonio Village. Seriously!

I actually miss taking public transportation to work or to wherever. I have to admit, it's a bit elitist of me, that I'm so used to driving that I see public transportation as a hassle now. But I miss it very, very much. I owe my street smarts to all the jeepney, bus, tricycle, MRT, LRT, and Megatren routes. For a little over 21 years I've been a public transportation kid. Now, whenever I get to take them I find it to be such an adventure!

Anyway I saw this in one of the blogs I follow (Spanky, thanks! It's amazing!). I was like O. M. G.!! The MRT's now connected to the LRT! Can you believe that? I've been so out of touch when it comes to public transportation. Minsan, I'm not even sure how much the pamasahe is already! I know when there's a gas price hike, but has the pamasahe increased lately? Not sure!

This extension caused HELL ON EARTH because of the traffic along Balintawak. I mean, traffic's really deadly there, but during this extension's development is was a ton worse than ever! And I'm sure everybody would say HELL YES!

But hey! If it's for the comfort of every MRT-LRT loyalists, then every single hour we all spent fuming and cursing along Balintawak every rush hour is all worth it. It absolutely cuts travel time! It's cheaper and yes, we get to our offices smelling less pungent (haha!)

While we stay safely in our airconditioned cars, those who take public transportation are always at the mercy of sweaty seatmates, dust, pollution, and God knows what! So it's just about time we make their commuting comfortable. Don't you think so?

I think HELL YES! :)

So for my next adventure, I am taking this route just for kicks. I'll start all the way from the Edsa-Taft station of the MRT and end at the last station of the LRT, Baclaran yon diba? :D

P.S. We are all commuters. Whether we take public transportation, or ride a car, or walk, or whatever to wherever our destination is, we still commute. I only learned this like recently. So it's about time you stop saying that you commute to work when you really want to say is you take a jeep or a bus or whatever to work. :)

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

1st Philippine International Pyromusical Competition

For two consecutive Sundays now, I've been trooping down to Blue Wave in Macapagal to watch the 1st Philippine International Pyromusical Competition. There's just something about fireworks I find so irresistible. It's pleasing to the eyes, and it makes you feel like a kid all over again. What's nice about the pyro competition is that it brings families together. Since it's held every Sunday, car/van loads of families come down just to watch, causing traffic, but who cares right?

Anyway just a short story I'd like to share since I said that I loved fireworks. It used to be the other way around when I was a kid. I remember seeing photos in our family albums of past New Year's with me cowering in fear and my Lola holding me tight. Mom said I used to be sooooooo scared of fireworks because it reminded me of lightning. Mom told me there was a lightning storm when I was a kid, it was so bad that the lightning looked like it was going to enter the house. It traumatized me and since then fireworks and camera flash scared the living day lights out of me. Hahaha! But now, 20++ years later, I'm into photography, I can't resist a Kodakan moment, and fireworks make me feel young again. Talk about a major turn around. I sometimes feel like a walking statement of conquering your fears. :p

Anyway, both the young and the old just love it. Despite it starting late (it's supposed to start at 7pm but it usually begins at 7.45pm), people still love and appreciate it. It's the kids who usually can't stay put, asking their mommies and their daddies every minute if it was going to start anytime soon. But the long wait is worth it when you see the fireworks illuminating the summer skies. You can hear the ooohhh's and the aaahhh's from the people. And at the end of every competition, as if people would hear it all the way from MOA, there would be applause, well depending on how good the performance was. Watching the fireworks just makes you feel like all your worries have disappeared, even for just a little while. :)

The first time Mom and I went, I didn't bring my DSLR and tripod. So I just took pictures from my phone. But on the second trip, with Mariko, Tita Mavic and Ate Lemar, I've wised up and tagged my DSLR and heavy duty tripod. The results are much, much, much better, thanks to the sturdy tripod of Cd-r King!! :D

Anyway here are some pics I took. Sorry they're crappy since I just took them from my phone. These were taken during the February 21 competition between the United Kingdom and China. We weren't able to see China's since we had to rush all the way back to Makati to hear mass. So here's what the UK had to offer. I swear it was 100 million times better when we watched it. Sorry po, pasensya camera phone lang po ang gamit! I know these photos are really bad for promotion! *peace* haha :p

So if you guys haven't watched the pyromusical competiton you still have 2 Sundays left. Here are the remaining schedules:

March 7, 2010 Singapore and Malaysia

March 14, 2010 United States of America and the Philippines
(although we're not competing, it's more of just showcasing what we've got :D)

So bring your kids down the bay area! I swear it's fun! I won't be passing up on the last two days if I were you guys! So hope to see y'all at Blue Wave or wherever you guys want to watch!! :D

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