Sunday, December 30, 2012

It Turned Well, Up Dharma Down

Up Dharma Down has been in the music scene since mid-2000s and has released an album last 2006 and another one two years later. They have a steady and (very) loyal cult following with their distinct music style that looks away from the "typical OPM sound" which has been proliferating and playing the radio stations since it was brought to life.

They haven't succumbed into the temptation of giving in to the widely-accepted music style and stuck to their trademark sound. May the heavens bless them even further because of that. Resist the temptation!!! The year 2012 has been fortunate enough to be the year the band released their eternally-awaited third album. Hallelujah bells played when I received my copy (thanks, Rough!!). My ears thanked me so much when I played the CD, they almost cried.

If this is a review (which is obviously not one), that's 8 out of 5 stars. Up Dharma Down is not for everyone and given that, I know a lot of people are missing out on good music.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Moment I Knew

When it's time to go, it is time to go. 

I have yet to pack my bags and determine where I'm headed to. All I know is that it's time to go, I have to go.

Monday, December 03, 2012

When We Run MNL 2012 (Nike)

This is the first time I have joined a fun run without a cause - no beneficiaries, just a part of a greater schema of run-for-profit-or-marketing events. I present to you... Nike We Run MNL 2012.

They have this ridiculous idea that when you're above 24y/o, you have to (and can really afford to) pay 1,200 for a run without hesitation. When you're below that age, you have to shell out 800 pesos (single registration or 700 when you and your buddy who's also below 24 years old register at the same time. Yes we know we get a really good hype, nice performance/running shirt, a drifit finisher's shirt, and a water bottle from our registration fee, but the price difference is just absurd.

Mall of Asia. I approve of this because we won't be blocking any other important roads aside from those leading to Mall of Asia area anyway.

Event: Run
There was some mishaps during the targeted start of the run because throngs of people were in the wrong place. One Event Security personnel blurted out, "Why are you all here?? You shouldn't be here! The starting line is on  the other side!" No duh, the map was clearly incorrect. There was even a "You are here" mark and the map led us to where we stayed. So by the gun time, we had to wait for more than 15 minutes before we were able to start running.

Water stations just served water. No Pocari Sweat or some other sports drink but that's okay. Just pure water served in... plastic freaking cups. Of course, these runners think they own the world - too much adrenaline being pumped. So people just throw the cups elsewhere and the plastic made these cracking sound while the pavement was really wet! Talk about waste management!

There were mobile DJs, the track was simple and since it's just one distance (10K), no one was left running around in circle wondering where the next turn is.

This thing is all about the merchandise. Some can add that it's also being part of the Nike Running Community (which I'm not sure why I capitalized the letters, as if there's really a running community).

Saw the shirts? You should also see the water bottle included! This is the first run  I have joined which doesn't have any beneficiary. I feel shamed, yes, so I just try to think I paid for the merch. At 700 pesos, I got a bottle, and 2 shirts that fit me nicely. Quite a steal.

Results are posted here. I really think they should fix the ranking by chip time and not by gun time because at my batch, it took us around 18 minutes before we were able to start! Well, that's really how it goes. Makes it "fun", right? If you run for the competition, go run a marathon instead - where there are less people stopping in the middle of the road, or those who pose for the camera at every stop.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Eat Fresh Hong Kong Famous Street Food - J. Abad Santos St, San Juan

As another way of delaying my other obligations such as uploading photos starting from my July trip and blogging about my half-of-Indochina trip, I just go to our nearby food area and pack some calories.
At 11:30PM.
Since we're not getting any mileage from this one, I present to you Eat Fresh Hong Kong Famous Street Food. Yep, that's the name.

You get to choose from their wide variety of "street food" and you can have it deep fried (oh the health freaks' eyes are twitching right now) with a choice of sweet-and-sour or the famous curry sauce (just like the way they have it in HK/Macau). Aside from the street food, they also serve meals - noodles, short orders, and rice toppings. I'm not exactly sure what to recommend to you, aside from the sure-hit Pancake Balls! It's served with diluted peanut butter sauce. Yummy! Ok, now I'm hungry.

You can view their menu here:
Menu 1
Menu 2

Eat Fresh Hong Kong Famous Street Food
J. Abad Santos St.
Open M-Saturday until 12am
Closed on Sundays (boooo)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Tralala... Life.


We've been through a lot of stress but I really admire the endurance of some people in helping another. However, the stress is taking its toll, this useless unnecessary stress other folks are throwing on us. If the kids can't adjust their lifestyles based on what they have and the current situation they are in, there is no hope. Where can we buy sense of responsibility and understanding? Giving them everything, spoon-feeding them, is not really helping anyone. Or maybe, just maybe, these supportive people are just boosting their benevolence points.

I don't want to be mean but some people are really abusive. Either they're hopeless or they are so selfish they're willing to bite off the hand who feeds (or helps) them.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Nasa Isip Ka - Session Road

Session Road has been alive since time immemorial. Well, actually just at that time when OPM was bringing in more bands in the alternative scene. With newfound friends who invited me to watch their comeback gig at 70's Bistro last time and just another one last night at Metrowalk, I revisited my music library and played out their music once again.
When Hannah sings, everyone listens.
I had the first album, "Suntok sa Buwan", way back but totally lost track that they released their second one, "Bakit Hindi?", a couple of years after. "Blanko" has been the front-liner for "Bakit Hindi?" but they have a lot of other good tunes as well, with simplistic lyrics and some reggae-like songs in the mix. Just like an Eager Angel, I had to listen and watch their shows again. "Hiram" and "Nasa Isip Ka" are both on loop now - because  "Blanko" is so mainstream. Haha.

Ito ba sayo’y isang laro?
Ako’y nalilito gulong-gulo
Pinapaasa, saan ba ito pupunta?
Wala naman akong pinanghahawakan pero…

Bakit lagi nalang nasa isip ka
Sa bawat pagmulat ng aking mata
Bakit lagi nalang nasa isip ka
May pagkakataon bang magsama?

Eto ako iyong-iyo
Ano ba talaga ako sayo?
Pinapaasa, ako ba sayo’y may halaga?
Wala naman akong pinanghahawakan pero…

Bakit lagi nalang nasa isip ka
Sa bawat pagmulat ng aking mata
Bakit lagi nalang nasa isip ka
May pagkakataon bang magsama?

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

The Snakespeare and The Cheap Action Star

So when a friend asked me how do you drop a "I liked you for a time" bomb in a letter, I typed this:

"Have you ever stayed up late looking up in the night sky at a very beautiful and bright star, admiring it from a distance? Then after some time, it moved and shot through spiraling downwards towards the earth. I never saw its magnificence afterwards. That's how I felt about you." Well, it was good while it lasted.

That's at 3:15am and drained by all the documentations I'm working on. It's a deviation from all the classic Pinoy action film kontrabida lines I have always been fond of doing (and acting aloud).

Bida: Mando! *shuffles at the cemented pillar his back is against* Nandito na ako, ako ang harapin mo!
KontraBida: Wahah-haha-hah! Lito, ang syota mo uunahin ko! Isang bala lang ito! Mabuti pang sumuko ka na!
Bida: Mandooooo! *in a husky whisper-like voice* Subukan mo lang saktan syota ko, mukha ko ang huli mong makikita bago ka mamatay! May lima pa akong palakol at itak dito, hindi ako natatakot!

And at this time while waiting for the documentation tool to load, Taylor Swift's song "Treacherous" played. This is the current song on-loop in my head.

This hope is treacherous.
This daydream is dangerous.
I, I, I like it.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Chow Fun - Jose Abad Santos St, San Juan

J. Abad Santos (Wilson area, San Juan) is a good place to visit when "where to eat?" is the only thing you want to think of. There are new places in the area that you can easily miss - Tori Box, La Creperie, and Eat My GF - but we'll get into those soon. Along J. Abad Santos is the huge-ass signage for Hong Kong Street Food and the bright signage of Chow Fun. Oh, how fun, there's Chow Fun! (This won't pass as their slogan, ever.)

Chow Fun has simple red, grey (no paint), and black interiors with a touch of printed tarpaulins at the sides and pretty overcrowded lamps. It's a no frills easy place to come into, you won't get intimidated with the interiors and the servers. As usual, the problem along J. Abad Santos establishments is the parking space. So please have the patience and some saltine crackers ready if you're really hungry already.
So bright like the stars at night. Whut?

Their menu is not to die for. I asked the server if there's a chance that their menu will add more items and she said yes, since the place is still relatively new. I kept on looking for the "basic" ones such as noodle soup and some fried rice. Let's give them time to double their food menu before we strike the hatchet on this. Since we're not that hungry, we opted with their famous starter: the Chinese Fondue.
The Chinese Fondue contains fried veggie cakes, sliced squid balls, and squid. It is served with a cheese-and-curry dip (I suddenly miss Macao) over a lighted candle. Fondue fun-due! It's a very interesting fondue and since I'm a fan of curry dips, this is worth my Php155 (although I know I can eat so much more for this price). Aside from the fondue, I ordered Broccoli X.O. which also has mushroom in dried seafood sauce but was too excited to eat so I wasn't able to take a photo. HA! Their iced black tea strawberry is really really good! It's a must!

It is somewhat pricey for the serving size and almost all items are for sharing. Not a good day to be an only child who went out for some late-night snacking! You have to bring your friends or family over to make the trip here worth it. For dessert, we had a toss-up between Haw Flakes Pastry or their Butchi. The Reese's Chocolate Butchi won! Since I'm the younger one, I ate 2 out of 3 pcs. Mwahaha. I like Reese's and I like buchi, it's a win-win situation for me! Friends said that Eat Well offers 6pcs chocolate buchi but I have yet to see the price range for Eat Well (which has a lot of good reviews, by the way). Maybe Chow Fun's PHP 120 Reese's Butchi stands a chance against Eat Well's.
PHP 120 for 3 pcs.

Chow Fun

103 J Abad Santos St., Little Baguio, San Juan (near Serenitea and Ristras)
+632 624 1009

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Juan Carlos Ferrero

Juan Carlos Ferrero retires from professional tennis. Bring out the tissue.
Oh God, why?!
The 32-year-old Spanish former world number 1 decides to call it quits after losing in the Valencia Open 500. Born February 12, 1980, JC Ferrero won the 2003 French Open title. I always tune in when he plays so I'm feeling pangs of sadness right now.

Final tournament.
This face.

This man.

This champion.

Why can't Radek Stepanek retire instead?!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

TWG Tea 2

Originally posted Oct 23, updated Nov 27 with the 1837 Green Tea and 1837 White Tea.

So basically coming off from the first post about TWG teas, I have tried Weekend in Venice and Sakura! Sakura! Tea. Also joining the pack is Kiel's stash of Happy Birthday Tea and the 3 new ones from my mom: Weekend in Shanghai, Green Tea, and White Tea. Oh she also brought me macarons which she got for free. She got it from the Filipina sales attendant at TWG and they chatted for some time and then for some reason my mom got free macarons. Na-budul-budol si ate. She didn't know what hit her, HA!

The (new) line up of leaves I got from TWG:
Happy Birthday Tea is a blend of "mild" black tea, sweet red berries, and a touch of vanilla.
Weekend in Shanghai is green tea infusion of ripe red berries, "mystical blossoms", and a hint of mint.
Green tea and white tea are of the basic kinds. They do not have infusions but for some reason, they still smell so good! Very similar to the "usual" TWG smell. Mabango pala talaga ang mahal na tea.

Still, the champion tea for me is still Weekend in Venice, it must be the pineapple. It has to be the pineapple! Sakura! Sakura! comes in a near second place, while Happy Birthday Tea is also a good tea - it's black tea with a sweet taste. Weekend in Shanghai tastes a little different, I thought the ripe red berries would bring good justice but the mint balances the sweet taste.

Remember, a teaspoon for every person and another for the pot!

Both Weekend in Venice and Sakura! Sakura! are green tea with fruits and flowers. I drank flowers, amazeballs. :|

Update!! I can't believe that I just opened the 1837 Green Tea with the description from,
"A fragrant fantasy, this aromatic green tea blend of TWG Tea’s signature 1837 Tea is a voyage, boasting a lofty fruit and flower bouquet that leaves a delicious aftertaste of red fruits and caramel with a light touch of astringency. A delightful tea for any time of the day and perfect paired with desserts." It even has blue petals!
Green and blue. Sister said "Crayola!" :|
While the 1837 White Tea, "A twist on TWG Tea’s renowned signature tea, 1837 White is an ethereal blend of white tea with notes of fruits and flowers from the Bermuda triangle, which leaves a lingering aftertaste of wild berries and anise. A crystalline and sophisticated tea for the evening."

Monday, October 22, 2012

And Then There Were More CDs

Imagine getting a vinyl record and setting the pin on to it, listening to wonderful music singing out from your player on a lazy Sunday afternoon. Chillin' like an old person, waiting for the wind to blow the chimes in tune to the music.

Well that vinyl idea would be out for now. Since setting up and reconstructing our vinyl player (bodega alert) entails a lot of time and resources (where in the world will I get vinyl records of recent artists here in the country?), that idea is going to be parked for now. We'll get back to that later, more than sooner. So for now, we'll let the DJs violate and scratch the vinyls first while I settle with my CDs again. I really need to look for a new container for these, as they're piling up on my table.

Of Monsters and Men's "My Head Is an Animal", The xx's 2nd album "Coexist", and Ellie Goulding's "Halcyon" which is also her 2nd album. It was a good day to burn money for Amazon!

And we're listening to Gold Motel's "Safe in LA" at present. Gold Motel's lead singer is Greta - the other half of the amazing The Hush Sound. :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Oh in case you missed it.

We won our 5th straight UAAP Senior Men's Basketball Championship.

2008: Bring Back the Crown
2009: Back to Black
2010: Three-peat
2011: Mary Four You
2012: One Big Five
The Ateneo community also includes Captain Picard in the celebration.

Friday, October 05, 2012

Cliff Diving at Ariel's Point - Boracay

Sept. 30, 2012

They say YOLO - You Only Live Once. And they use it as an excuse for all the irresponsible things they could think of doing. Well, if you've been to Boracay Island (Philippines), Ariel's Point is the famous cliff diving spot. It's way higher than Tali Beach's cliff diving spot and here you can really say YOLO as in "You only lunod (drown) once" as there are 3 planks (5 meters, 8 meters, 15 meters) and one more jump-off point at 3 meters. Meters? Let's convert it to feet: 5 meters is approx. 14 feet, 8 meters is approx. 26 feet, and 15 meters is around 49 feet and that's if it's not yet low tide.

You pay PHP1,500 for the boat transfer, buffet (eat all you can and drink all the alcohol you can consume), snorkeling and kayak gears, and of course, inclusive to the package is for you to scream your lungs out (actually you can't scream as you'll be frozen under the heat of the sun) at the dive areas. It's a good price to pay whether you're going to drown yourself or just pig-out at the area or do both. After all, snacks and beer are aplenty. No one barfed from anxiety, by the way.

You can also torture yourself by building on the anticipation of jumping off 15 meters. Try the lower jump-off planks first to practice your form and (as mentioned) to scare yourself silly. It's really a good place for trying out new things and to have your regular dose of adrenaline. The crowd is amazing, they cheer you on and egg you to jump especially when you're just standing there waiting for the sun to set while thinking "did I really pay this much to fracking torture myself?!"

15 meters is a long way down.
Q: What if I don't know how to swim?
A: They have swimmers at the bottom armed with life vests so when you jump/dive, the moment you swim up by instinct (natural buoyancy will bring you to the surface anyway, even if you do minimal movement), they're going to give you a life vest so you can just float, relax, and flutter kick your way to the ladder.

Thursday, October 04, 2012

I Can't Like You

So I still have loads of backlogs clogging my list and my mind. What to do, what to do? Post unrelated entries like it's what you do every day!

Thought Catalog has been really mainstream. It soars way above the mainstream line and well, it's a good thing that people are reading more interesting things nowadays. This specific post has been in my browser tabs for quite some time. Maybe it's time to put it here so I can finally close it.

I Can't Like You by Christopher Hudspeth

I like you. I mean I actually, like you. I realized it a while ago and I’m not thrilled because I already know that I shouldn’t. I can’t. I won’t. There’s no happy ending that could possibly come of this – not even a half decent one. Not for you, not for I. In fact, the chances of things ending in any fashion other than a love life massacre are alarmingly slim. If only there were a way to enjoy your company while controlling and diffusing this pesky crush, that would be ideal. It’s obvious that we both know there are undeclared feelings that exceed those of a regular friendship; we’re just hesitant to say so. Or at least I am.

It’s tempting to just tell you, and if your immediate facial expression displays anything other than joy, I can quickly declare “Just kidding,” making you feel like the foolish one for buying into my obvious ‘joke’. But eventually I decide that it’s better off being left an unspoken thought in my mind, because the potential of rejection or complication is far worse than keeping my mouth shut. Unreciprocated feelings ruin good friendships. They make one person ask for more than can be given, create discomfort, and serve as a cancerous tumor to the platonic bond. When we avoid expressing feelings and hold them in, it’s benign. Yes they still exists, but being left unspoken makes them harmless.

There are those days where boldness from an unknown source makes me go as far as writing out a text message professing my feelings. I read it, reread it, evaluate each word and consider various outcomes. After a while the little voice in my head thinks better of it and holds delete until every last letter has been expunged. It’s safer that way and right now, caution feels wiser.

You’re just too unavailable. Emotionally unavailable. Physically unavailable. Simply unavailable. Or is it unattainable?  Either way, I know that I can’t like you. And there are many reasons as to why you’re not a possibility, but do quantity and details really mean that much? In reality, one legitimate reason is enough, and with that knowledge our feelings should be kept in check. Or I should say, my feelings – to avoid making any assumptions.

So these thoughts will be suppressed. They’ll be stuffed into a bottle with the cap screwed on tight. It’s better this way. Or at the very least, it’s safer. All that’s for certain is that I can’t like you, for so many reasons. And if just one of those reasons would be enough for me to keep distance, the fact that there are multiple only solidifies any anxieties. The crush will have to go somewhere far, far away. Maybe it’ll dissolve, evaporate, or vanish suddenly – whatever the case it can’t expose itself. Because yes, I really like you, but I can’t.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Caffeinated in Vietnamese and Thai Fashion

So basically, one of the prime reasons I was excited to go to Vietnam and Thailand is this: coffee and tea. It's caffeine in a nutshell.  I have been brewing both Vietnamese coffee and Thai tea because friends and family have been sharing coffee beans and tea leaves for me to enjoy. It's about condensed milk plus the taste of Vietnamese coffee beans that's amazing, as well as condensed milk plus Thai tea leaves that somehow makes a really good drink that will keep you running in circles all day long.

The first time I tasted "authentic" Vietnamese coffee was of the iced type. I thought I saw stars but then realized I was just exaggerating. I drank another one again the next day (actually I drank around 4 glasses on our second day in Vietnam) but tried it without ice and then had the plain black one, too, because I was really excited to try everything. Nothing trumps iced coffee with milk! I can have it day in and day out until my waistline balloons and my blood sugar skyrockets, whichever comes first.
First taste of authentic (hot) Vietnamese coffee with milk. T___T
I was so wired up after the first time I tasted coffee in our hostel. It's just the first day and I still have lots of time to drink. More glasses of good coffee, I tell you! This time try it iced! Still gooooood. I also tried it plain black - just didn't take a photo of it anymore, that's too much nonsense crap I've been shoving into your eyes.
Iced Vietnamese Coffee (with milk) like a boss.
Ca phe sua da!
How about their tea? I tried "hot Vietnamese tea" at Mui Ne and... it's not note-worthy. The taste is something near jasmine tea. It was a good break from all the coffee I've been consuming though. Cute pot. End of story.
I still managed to empty the pot. My own solo tea party again.
Oh the legitimate brewing of Vietnamese coffee, Trung Nguyen Cafe is the place to be. Purchase all the good stuff here! This is actually how they prepare all of the coffee in Vietnam. They pour in ground beans into the filter and then hot water comes in and you have to wait for your coffee. It's worth the wait, anyway!
Fracking good!
Thailand. The first time I brewed my own tea from tea leaves (not tea bags) using our percolator yielded a dark colored drink. It was dark brown in color (so instantly it's black tea) and after consuming it plainly after some time, I decided to pour in condensed milk and some sweetener to try to match the recipe (since I used to be hooked on Nestea's instant Thai milk tea which is also yummy). Holy schmoly. Instant addiction to Thai milk tea! Try it iced and omg, this is fresh (not instant)! Blood sugar test, anyone?
Ta-ta-Thai iced milk tea! Oh the calories!!
Where does it come from? No, not from some magical tree that gives off milk tea as its sap. This is the brand I've been using for my Thai milk tea.
I still have no idea what brand this is.
Except that it says "Please Drink Thai Tea Mix Number One Brand" in the label.
This is the stock at the end of the trip. The damage, oooh the damage. Hahaha.
I lodged this inside my bag across three countries. Dedication!
There's Creative 1 (culi robusta) and Creative 2 (robusta arabica) Trung Nguyen Coffee plus Weasel Coffee from Vietnam (we still have the Buon Me Thuot Special "Home Blend" from Trung Nguyen as well); Tea Kaffir and Green Tea from Cambodia; and Nestea instant milk tea and Thai tea leaves from Thailand. Bwahaha.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Try Something New Every Day!

Do you do the same thing every day? Part your hair at the same place each time? Pass by the same route on a daily basis? Well, we all have our own routines from the moment we wake up until we retire at night (or wee hours in the morning for some). This makes our lives easier, no need to worry on what to do next as we have programmed ourselves to automatically do the next thing. This is good, right? Hell yeah!!!! Especially if we want to be boring! *Jeers!*

Warning: To those with control issues, doing something new every day is a surefire way of punishing yourself. The haunting feeling of not knowing what's next - oh great.


For the first time after more than a year of being a member, I finally tried out the sauna at Gold's Gym although I made it appear like Bikram yoga - doing stretches and dips inside. Haha. Also, I managed to kill one Saturday by indulging in alcohol for "Friday Night" then did tennis on Saturday morning, then ran in the gym afterwards (trying the valet for the first time as well). Oh, I also watched Bourne Legacy in the movies when I got home and went to a family reunion in the evening then stayed in the hospital because of an emergency. August 11 was one of the worst days - very taxing both physically and emotionally.

How about trying a new salon for the first time? Only two people have cut my hair and this is the first time I'm trying out another person. I told the hair stylist (or should we say image consultant?) that I want "intense layering" for my haircut and I think he grinned and sounded really wary, "that means I'll be chopping 5 inches off your hair now..." I nodded really slowly and he proceeded with the cut.

Or watching a film festival?

There's this 5D ride in Timezone and of course, we have to try something new every day, right? Bring in your younger cousins who are game to anything and you can tick one thing off your "new things to try" list, whether you keep one or not is up to you. (I don't.) Timezone's 5D ride is a hundred bucks per person and you get to choose the "adventure" you want. It looks really hilarious because there's a monitor outside where people can watch the riders - scratching, yawning, laughing, whatever.

There are a lot of new things you can do every day. If you're worried you can't find something new, no - I'm sure you'll be able to do/try a new thing each time! New restaurants, new way of making coffee, another route, etc. Go make new experiences! :p

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Cagayan de Oro, Bukidnon, and Camiguin: The Northern Mindanao Adventure

Cagayan de Oro, Bukidnon, and Camiguin - this is the trio of a Northern Mindanao trip. Catch a plane from Manila to CDO, ride a van or motorcycle (if you're that adventurous) to Bukidnon and back. Then from Cagayan de Oro, ride a bus or rent a van to the port wherein you can catch a ferry to Camiguin. That's the usual route/adventure for those interested in white water rafting, ziplining, and basically a fun adventure!

This can be done in (just) 3 full days! (Imagine the vacation leaves you can save...) It only takes one long weekend and some cash to enjoy so much. Three days two nights: one day for rafting and ziplining then overnight in CDO and then travel for Camiguin for tours and swimming then overnight in Camiguin and you still have the third day free before your flight!

First stop is Cagayan de Oro, the City of Golden Friendship and the gateway for nearby provinces. When we touched down CDO Airport we opted to ride the zipline in Bukidnon first because (I think) if we started with the white water rafting we would be so spent that we won't fully enjoy Bukidnon as much, so upon pick-up from the airport we went straight to Bukidnon for some serious ziplining.

You'll pass by DOLE's pineapple farm on the way which is a good spot for taking scenic photos. Or okay, jump shots.

There are 3 lines in Dahilayan Adventure Park for ziplining, including their "Asia's longest zip line." Their latest "ride" is the DropZone Sky Swing wherein you'll be pulled all the way up and you have to pull the cord to release yourself from all the pent-up girly voice in you. They only have one tip for us, "Remember to scream like a baby!" The guide didn't say "scream like a girl," but mentioned "baby"; I think he's not sexist. Props to kuya.
Mar has too much exposure already.
Since we're there, I was up for the DropZone challenge!! I would be the one pulling the cord for us because Sarah said if she's going to be the one to release the lock, we would be up there until it's time to go back to Manila. If anyone freezes from fear, s/he can stay all day up there. Release on cue or prolong your agony. Pick your poison!
Oh, it looks soooo safe.
Posing for the camera is optional. Shouting your lungs off is a requirement.

Cagayan de Oro
We're ready for the waves! White water rafting is one of the key attractions in Cagayan de Oro. We employed the services of Great White Water Tours (see Contacts portion below) whose package includes airport pick-up and ziplining at Dahilayan Adventure Park at Bukidnon, not to mention lunch (or dinner) and snacks.
Pre-war of the worlds...with the river. Our guides are really hilarious by the way.
Remember to keep your legs up when you're in the water, those rocks are nasty! I was one of those thrown into the river and got to experience seeing a rock come closer to your face (is this how they felt when Titanic hit the iceberg?). Seriously, I thank God the water was not murky or brown when we were there (depends on the weather) as I was sure I involuntarily drank a lot of water. A lot.
There are days when you fall from the raft.... It's freaking life changing!
Victory at the end of the day! Well, wait until the next day for the muscle pain. It's definitely worth it. Embrace it like a badge of honor! (And good luck on moving.)

We stayed at a nice (with regards to room quality and price) hotel named Budgetel. It's a new place so I highly recommend it. After being dead for some time, we woke up really early to catch the first ferry trip to Camiguin. Benoni Port is located at Misamis Oriental so we rode a van (since we're 5 in a group, it's not heavy on the budget plus it's more convenient) going there instead of waiting for the bus.

In a nutshell for How to Get to Camiguin from CDO and Vice Versa: Go to Agora Bus Terminal (everyone in CDO knows where this is so you can just take a trike going there) and ride either a bus going to Butuan or rent a van (PHP 1,400 is a good price). Both buses (tell the ticket dude you're going to Camiguin) and vans will drop you at the Balingoan Port in Misamis Oriental where you will be purchasing tickets for the ferry aka roll-on-roll-off (RORO) which will end at Benoni Port at Camiguin. Camiguin is just an hour away!
Balingoan Port of Misamis Oriental. Jump off to Camiguin!

Port of Benoni at Camiguin.
How to get back? Ask to be dropped off at Benoni Port and then ride the ferry back to Misamis Oriental. There is a bus terminal right across the street (you can walk this) and there are lots of trips back to Cagayan de Oro.
Our ferry ride back to CdO. Check out the first trip in the photo below.

Day tour of the whole island of Camiguin. The island born of fire. Niiiice! Old Volcano pretty much did a lot of damage in this humble province. We freaking braved the rain when the storm was there and I have never felt so cold and wet in my life. Oh adventure, I've never asked for so much in this ferry ride. We initially thought if we were going to be thrown overboard (just like rafting) and I have been eyeing the life jackets ever since we boarded the ferry.
Refugees at 4am.
We stayed at Paras Beach Resort which is a really beautiful place. The cottages/rooms are nice and clean, the amenities are great, the pool is wonderful, White Beach is just a few minutes away, the price is reasonable, and we got the tour from them as well. Let's move on with the tour!

First stop is the Katibawasan Falls. When we were there, it was like we're expecting the Presidential chopper to arrive and everyone else was asked to step back. The sound of the waterfall was so loud (well since it rained earlier, the water has been notorious) and the sight was just marvelous. Well, I was really tempted to swim there but after what happened to me in CDO, naaaah. I'll pass. I love being alive.

Then there's DENR's Ostrich Farm where they breed guess what? Ducks! No, duh. Ostriches. I asked them what's their purpose on breeding these lovely big birds. Dude told me, "after the zoos, maybe we can have ostrich meat." OSTRICH FREAKING MEAT. Are you fracking kidding me?!
Game face on, ostrich style.