Monday, October 05, 2015

Ngayong Oktubre

Ngayong Oktubre, mangilan-ngilan na ang mga naririnig at nababasa kong kuwento ng pag-iibigang nauuwi sa wala. Ilang taon ng pagsasama at mga ala-alang walang makapapantay, ang ipiniling isantabi na lamang. May naghahangad pa ng kadugtong, may ibang naghihintay pa sa tawag ng bukas. 

Nobyembre na ba? Magtitirik na ba tayo ng kandila para sa mga pusong ang kasalanan lang ay nagmahal nang sobra?

Hindi ko nais sumali. Hindi ko pinangarap makasama rito. Subalit kung sa pagpahinga ay may kapiling na pagluha, mas nanaisin ko ito kaysa mawala nalang ang lahat. 

Babalik ako. Babalik tayo. 

Friday, August 28, 2015

When you're really down and the other person is happy, do you hide what you feel and ride along the highs of the other?
Or would the other contain one's excitement to uplift the other's misery?

Uy. Sometimes being the bigger person gets tiring. Kudos to those who believe they can always be that person. 

Friday, August 14, 2015

Paano mo malalaman ang borderline ng pagiging pushover at ng "being the bigger person" sa isang relasyon?

Saturday, August 08, 2015

Reading Anything This August?

*I have started this entry in English and since I noticed it's the National Language Month (Buwan ng Wika, man!), I feel guilty for continuing this in English instead of retyping everything in Filipino. :( Masahol pa ako sa malansang isda, alam ko. Huhubells.*

Books. They say nothing beats hard copies - printed copies of books that have mystified you, or authors you simply adore. Recently, I have scored Bob Ong's "Si" and yes, you can shame me for not supporting our local authors. I have a history with books, I just got into the whole reading thing late in grade school / early in high school mainly due to the then-influx of Filipino authors who wrote entertaining books full of essays and those that look like a compilation of interrelated thought bubbles. I still have pending Jessica Zafra books to be ordered and Miriam Defensor-Santiago's books which I initially bought as a gift for my friend. I know. I initially intended this post to be my published dirty laundry list of books I haven't flipped through. What an ugly avenue to do so.

Starbucks sample cards are the best, prettiest, and cheapest bookmarks you'll have.
Just accompany your friend, no need to talk like a social climber, and just grab these babies
while she orders her overpriced drink.
How about e-books? I have a Kindle Paperwhite. I have my phone which is still serving as my smaller book reader for times I want to sneak in a few chapters in the office without looking like I'm not working. How about something more tangible? I still have hard copies of books I either bought or borrowed from my friends. I'm lucky I have friends who read books and are generous enough to lend and forget about it.

How do you manage reading through a book despite the internet, the television, and EDM music all over the radio? For me, I usually read 2 books side by side, although okay there are instances I read three books at the same time. The usual scene is that I read the book with most illustrations or fewer pages first a non-fiction alongside one or two fictions. At the moment I am reading "The Art of Thinking Clearly" by Rolf Dobelli while reading Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett's "Good Omens" in my phone and "By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept" by Paulo Coehlo in my Kindle. I know, it's not the most advisable way to finish off books but it works for me! Just do the rotation if you feel like your poorly self-diagnosed ADHD kicks and in no time, you'll realize the three books are done and you're looking for the next best thing!

Don't lose the art of reading. I don't mind if you prefer printed ones or just your phone/reader, as long as you read, there is hope for the future. Also, please stop spending all your time watching those viral video you see on social media. If you can't quit it, minimize it at the very least. Grab a book. Start the first chapter today. :)

Sunday, August 02, 2015

COMELEC 2015 San Juan City Edition

I wasn't able to vote during the previous election. It said my account has been deactivated due to failure to vote for 2 consecutive times. I haven't missed any other elections and it's not even possible because the time I registered was just on time for the 2010 Presidential Elections. Well, I wasn't the only one who experienced this because there have been other people who posted and complained of the same thing and we'll all just wallow in the fact that we were unable to vote due to some issues. This was probably due to the migration into combined precinct numbers and for some reason, I was the chosen one in our family. I should've gone to the Lotto station that day, it won't hurt to push my luck, eh?

Fast forward to today, 02-August 2015. So we heard that there is a COMELEC branch now near the old San Juan Municipal Hall (the new San Juan City Hall is near the Pinaglabanan Shrine). We looked around and it's difficult to spot. It's on the left side of the old municipal hall if you're looking at it from the street.

There were just 2 windows open and some youngsters who are either volunteers or on-the-job trainees are inside and ready to take your questions. So what do you have to expect when you're there?

- There is no system. Whoever gets to shove their forms or IDs first will get the attention. The "bakit siya kinuha mo na, eh nauna ako dito?" won't work. It's effort wasted. Save your high blood pressure. They don't give out numbers like in banks or other government offices nor even write your name in a logbook when the line is long. Buffet restaurants (even CD-R King!) have a better system.

- Show your ID. Tell them if you're there for reactivation or for biometrics. If you have an ACTIVE status, they will inform you if you need to have your biometrics re-captured or if you can go home now and you just wasted your time.

- In the event that you have a DEACTIVATED status, they will give you a form (or in the worst case, they will give you a form for you to PHOTOCOPY yourself), that's 3 copies of it, and you fill out each and every single item there, Afterwards, you submit it to them and they will call you for the thumbprints on the form and IF you need to have your biometrics re-captured. They will usually just update your photo there.

- Be patient. The kids will not understand your questions or queries the first time. Be straightforward in what you want. Lucky if you get the adult to attend to you. They will NOT issue voters' ID here, they told us to try next year. What they do though, is reactivation of status, recapturing of biometrics, and new application.

NOTE: I have talked to the lady operating the computer when I had my photo updated. She mentioned that there are instances that the active voters still have their biometrics saved while others' biometrics have been lost - so those are the folks who need to have their prints taken again. Sucks though, they should've just allowed everybody to have an updated photo just to ensure that they're still the ones claiming to be the name-bearer.

Some pro-tips:
- Never mind the list of Active and Deactivated voters. I wasn't able to find my name in both printouts but they were able to confirm that I have a deactivated status when they checked inside.
- Bring a pen or two. They won't provide you any extra pen and really, wherever you go, just bring a pen. How many people have held that pen? Can you imagine all the dirt? No?
- You are going to deal with young students who have not been oriented that much. They are not professional employees. Do not expect seamless transactions, painless experience, and just bring in a lot of patience and understanding.
- It's going to be either really warm or on the verge of a rainfall. Bring an umbrella just in case.
- Don't forget your IDs. Actually, one valid ID will do. I'm not sure why people here are not strict. It's identity and names on the line for the election, people!
- In the morning, visit around 9-11am and in the afternoon, be there by 1pm. People start to flock in around 1:30pm. They are also open on weekends!

Overall? The experience was not a walk in the park but there was no line when we got there and just think of the bigger picture. You're doing this not just for yourself but for your country as well. A little effort will go a long way! They are open weekdays and weekends except holidays and will be there until October. So please, there is no way you would miss this. Don't go rambling on social media when you do.

And oh, vote wisely. Please. PLEASE. If you haven't registered for the elections, shame on you. That's a bold statement.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Here's to New Beginnings!

It has been a freaking long time since I have blogged about anything! This is mostly due to not being able to connect to the blogger during office hours. Please also add my laziness to turn on our desktop and type my thoughts and feelings away while my niece runs around and talks to me incessantly.

Last Saturday, there was this MSI-ECS sale wherein they published the available units and the amount they're offering for those. It ranges from 10% to as much as 50% discounts. They listed the specifications, payment terms, and the condition of the item (if it has been opened, or if it has a scratch from a kitten) as well so all you have to do is have some products in mind and rush to their warehouse.

My friend and teammate, Amar, told me that when he went to this sale a few years back, they camped outside the warehouse similar to an iPhone release type and when the store is open, they elbowed each other out to get that shiny laptop/tablet in pure Hunger Games fashion. (There were items there that has "1" as its listed quantity. Making it even more appealing!)

There is no way I'd survive something like that. I'd probably fall asleep on the line, forgetting where I was, or I'd be trampled upon the moment they open the gates. So I just drank (fruit juice) and wondered the night away until I got a call the next day from Amar telling me that there's this laptop which is a perfectly good deal. He wanted it for himself but he still has a working laptop at home. I have wanted to have a laptop for almost 2 years now (ever since I switched employers, I never got to have my own laptop again) and that was the perfect opportunity.

Ending? I have a laptop, I'm broke, and I'm getting fat each day.
And oh, I'll be blogging more now! Woohoo! Good for me, bad for the interweb world!

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Wimbledon. It's the reason I will post something. Serena wins her 21st Grand Slam and did a "Serena Slam" as well. 

Truth is, I can't wait to have a laptop and work on posting anything and everything again. 

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Back to Boracay

This post was supposed to be up last March. 

It's my first time back in Boracay after a two-year hiatus because I chose to go somewhere else. Or maybe because I shifted companies and I needed those leaves. So, finally, I'm back for the summer! I was basically a companion to my friend who's a Boracay virgin. She loved the sand and the food and I think my mission was a success.

We tried the island hopping and I tell you. Snorkelling here sucks. It sucks. It sucks so much I thought I'm gonna lose my body to the ocean. Do NOT, I tell you, do NOT lose your money to the boats. 

The GMax Extreme would probably the one I'll be back for. Spending Php3,000 for a 10-minute experience might be too much but you know, there's a big appeal to screaming your lungs out with a possibilty of losing consciousness for a while. 

Boracay's sunset is still the best you can find, paired with white powdery sand and a glass of piña colada. If you have your significant other beside you, the scene is worth a kiss. 

One thing worth your money is paraw sailing. The sailboat gives a thrill of toppling over when it's too fast and when the boat is not balanced. They will sail you around as you watch the sun set. It's a very reflective, sentimental mood. The boatman allowed me to stand at the edge and then I asked jokingly, "Has someone ever fallen aboard?" He said yes. I was mortified and asked what they will do if I fall. He said he will fall with me to the ocean and the boatman will release the sails so the boat will halt. And then he'll help me swim back to the boat. I clung on for dear life after that story. 

Then we craved for lobster. We asked around and our boatman told us that our best bet is the talipapa. So we went there and bought lobster and prawns. Haggle some more. Haggle until you lose face. It's okay. We recommend it. 

How can 2 girls eat a kilo of lobster (with grilled prawns on the side) for dinner?
Would you eat that? Challenge is to think if that thing will scratch your
throat or is it the flesh already?

The sun, the sand, and the water. Add in some a lot of establishments and you get the best commercialized beach ever. 

No one's going to judge you (except your liver, I guess) if you decide to get drunk every night, especially if that's your way of appreciating Boracay. ;)

Monday, June 08, 2015

Hash Brown Pizza

When you love someone so much you've been all eyes and ears... The mere mention of his name sounds you off like a war alarm, the thought of him makes you smile and drool... Then you suddenly fall in love with another. This confident love-me-or-hate-me person who is so feisty and crazy, you cannot leave her side. 

But you want them both. What do you do? 

Put them together and add more friends. Bring in the plump one, the hot one, the interesting one, and the filler. 

What do you get? Hash. Brown. Pizza. Coronary risks. Obesity in the making.

Put three hash brown patties side by side on an ovenette tray and heat it till it gets cooked. Pull it out then open your Tostitos salsa jar, grate fontina and parmesan cheese, add button mushrooms, onions, top with jalapeños, and add more cheese. Then push the tray back inside and turn that knob. Thank us after 15 minutes. I think the ovenette's timer just went off.


Sunday, June 07, 2015

You Know, February Happened!

What?! My photo last February was not posted!

Happy birthday to myself! There's wine, cakes, and a cd to boot. That's a pink moscato on top, a Kindle Paperwhite I ordered while it was on sale, and Echosmith before they got big. <3

Thursday, May 21, 2015

One of the most cruel things you can ever do to someone is to fall in love and be in love together, and then fall out of love alone. You can't just show someone how amazing it is to love and be loved then take it back when you don't want it anymore. Saying, "you were able to live without love before anyway," puts the nail to the coffin. 

You can put it as letting a vegetarian taste bacon for the first time and after liking it, saying, "Well, you can't have it anymore. You were able to make it all along without bacon anyway." 150% Bitch/Dick move. 

Monday, April 20, 2015

"For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you. Even as he is for your growth so is he for your pruning. Even as he ascends to your height and caresses your tenderest branches that quiver in the sun, so shall he descend to your roots and shake them in their clinging to the earth. Like sheaves of corn he gathers you unto himself. He threshes you to make you naked. He sifts you to free you from your husks. He grinds you to whiteness. He kneads you until you are pliant; and then he assigns you to his sacred fire, that you may become sacred bread for God’s sacred feast.
All these things shall love do unto you that you may know the secrets of your heart, and in that knowledge become a fragment of Life’s heart.
But if in your fear you would seek only love’s peace and love’s pleasure, then it is better for you that you cover your nakedness and pass out of love’s threshing-floor, into the seasonless world where you shall laugh, but not all of your laughter, and weep, but not all of your tears."

The last paragraph melted me. Hit me right to the core because I have experienced laughing all of my laughter and weeping all of my tears. I have seen and felt the edge of happiness and sadness, when the world stops and your eyes betray you, when the world stops and the two of you are the only ones alive in this surreal magical moment. We have fought with weapons sharper than swords, with words louder than thunders that break through lovers. Yet, after all, I still long the other's arms.

But in the midst of picking up one's broken pieces, I'll still look for you.

Friday, April 17, 2015

If you want a future with someone you deeply care about, embrace his/her past even if it's as dark as f*ck and crazy as sh*t. Easier said than done though, but no one can do it better than you. 

Friday, April 10, 2015

They say experience is the best teacher but they didn't add that the student chooses what to learn from the experience. 

What did you get from the experience? Did you focus on the pain? How about just being better next time? Did it make your understanding broader? Unearthed realizations from it? Like, sometimes, it really just happens. Things happen. And sometimes, prince charmings are far from perfect. 

When you think there are snakes everywhere, maybe you just spent a lot of time with snakes around you. Shutting off people from generalizing breaks hearts. Maybe this is it. Don't let go. 

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Taiwan, Not Iwan!

A lot of things happened in March and I was just not able to write about it, much less, give time to reflect on it. It was the first time I cried because of a trip. WHY? One week prior to my Taiwan trip, I was fixing my visa and I just had this fever. The kind of fever that doesn't show up in work and doesn't get read in the thermometer whether that would be digital or the mercury kind. I just felt warm and weak with that warm feeling in your eyes. Maybe it's just the summer? It was March anyway. I feel okay in the morning, then a little restless in the afternoon (I thought I was just getting lazy in the office), and by nighttime, I am down with a fever.

I just got alarmed when my mom told me that I might not pass the heat scanners in the airport if ever I proceed to Taiwan. OMG Taiwan Iwan got into my mind. I might be detained if I push it, and then I will not be released to the Philippines immediately. Horror stories filled my active and untrustworthy imagination. My dad accompanied me to the diagnostic clinic at Promenade and the doctor recommended that I take almost all the tests possible. The doctor said I was really warm but it's not showing in the thermometer. (Spoiler: I thought this was my chance to be popular, I am a carrier of a very mysterious disease. Apparently not.) Countdown to Taiwan trip? 3 warm days.

I started getting chills with fever going up to 39.9 C that Saturday. And then it was Sunday and the same thing was still happening. Countdown: 2 crying days. That was when I finally accepted I won't be able to go to Taiwan. All the work and money and expectation... Down the drain. My yaya was still hopeful while my mom was thinking of re-booking my ticket.

Then results came in Monday morning. I took the first pill and didn't experience any of my previous predicaments. I was up and about by Wednesday morning. And my flight was Wednesday night.

That was about it. :| I crammed my recuperation.

Taiwan? Success!

Taiwan is probably one of the most underrated places that Filipinos visit. It's one of the listed destinations in Cebu Pacific (read: budget airlines) and yet people are going all around the world and somehow skipping Taiwan. Ask around and people will give you, "Ano nga ba meron sa Taiwan?"

Apparently, there's a lot of things going on in Taiwan. Cheap food, night markets everywhere, cheap transportation costs (look at Japan's and you'll know what I'm talking about), friendly folks, no/cheap entrance fees, shopping (both cheap and branded finds), cherry blossoms, Taipei 101 (it's a requirement), historical memorials, crystal cabins/ see-through cable car floors, tea, milk tea, more street food, more milk tea, and national parks.

It's leveled-up Hong Kong and you'll wonder why you haven't been thinking of visiting Taiwan.
Because you should be.
And you should really do it.

Ding Tai Fung! They have vegetarian xiao long bao!

We really came to Taiwan for the PingXi lantern festival. We took the subway and one bus ride to reach this place where a lot of people lighted lanterns and watched them fly away. I had mixed feelings about this, because really, where do dead lanterns go?

It was a magical moment, even though it's not really

Friday, February 13, 2015

Happy birth date! I'm now in my midlife! And I drank too much on a weekmornight! Whaddup!

Sunday, February 01, 2015

The Clean Plate - UP Town Center

Organic food is the new trend that is catching fire slowly but surely. Our restos now have been more diverse than ever, providing specialized dishes instead of fusions. Today we have organic dishes promoting "clean and safe" food and are GMO and pesticide-free. Okay, there is no surefire way of ensuring that what they're serving is really organic food. I guess you just have to trust their brand on that and when you find out if they're not true to their words, you can always make a social stir and lambaste them.

We have Green Pastures over at Shang now branching out to Eastwood, Earth Kitchen along White Plains, The Wholesome Table at BHS Central, and now The Clean Plate at UP Town Center. 

I have yet to try Earth Kitchen and my experience with Green Pastures was not really a good one. It was memorable but in a wrong way, so enough about that. It's making me cringe. 

The Clean Plate at UP Town is located at the 2nd Floor of the "newer" building. It does not boast a huge floor area but it adorns its place well with faux grass on the outside, new and colorful cutleries on the inside, as well as varied bottled food and other items for sale. My friend thought it was cute and annoying at the same time. I was just hungry. 

One thing you'll notice here is that their menu is very similar to Green Pastures except on the major difference: price. Green Pastures is more if not twice the price and serving size of The Clean Plate. There, with lesser price comes lesser serving but that's not an issue. It allows you to taste more of the variety in their menu and you won't leave the place with a hand on your tummy - because you're that full. You're supposed to eat healthy, not eat like a glutton. 

We ordered drinks first. I had their hibiscus drink and my friend got their lemongrass drink. Refreshing and pleasing to the eye, I still prefer Green Pastures' hibiscus+pandan mix though. They play Postmodern Jukebox in their resto, too, which gives it plus points for me. Haha.

It was a good experience but their Gulay Burger (veggie burger) doesn't taste like anything until you flood it with their sauce which made the dish fantabulous. Then came the arugula salad. It was nice, with vinaigrette, shaved parmesan, and some kesong puti. Or maybe I'm just biased with vinaigrettes and cheese combination. 

Lastly was the pasta. It had a huge river prawn, one mussel, pomodoro, chorizo, and wheat angel hair pasta. As expected, wheat pasta tastes like... wheat. :| I used to always just eat wheat pasta and even wheat pancakes. I used to describe it as lasang lupa but I've grown much more mature now and just shut up. 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

They say when you find the love of your life, never let this person go.

Tell me what is to happen, when this person decides to let you go.

"You were never meant to be," is bull. Keep that away from an aching heart. 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Life is Like A Tire - It's Dirty

A car.

I have experienced a dead battery and a flat tire. I have experienced being hit by an elf truck (sorry, Nono) and giving scratches (sorry, Noah), too. 

You know how much tires cost? A lot. Especially if you have different priorities, like eating out instead of buying tires and doing preventive maintenance. Like choosing to buy coffee instead of having a proper carwash. Okay, enough. It's already painful as it is. I'll take care of my car more. 

Then fastforward to a few days and my friend had a serious damage to her car. All for the love of french fricking fries. I won't elaborate as she probably doesn't want to broadcast what happened but her car, Dungis, doesn't look so happy about it either. And probably her wallet. Or bank account. Yes, it's that much. 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

A topic on the radio earlier was "what bad event happened to you that you don't want others to experience?"

First caller mentioned his experience of being robbed and held hostage at a tattoo parlor while having his phoenix tattoo. 

Another called mentioned having a bipolar sister. 

And the caller who trumped them all?
In her shaky voice, this distraught caller said, "Fall in love with someone stupid."

I think that beats all callers.

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Promises spoken from a lover's mouth are true only at the time the words came out. Don't hold on to them. 

Sunday, January 04, 2015

A New Year, A New Calendar to Flip

Oh why hello there, 2015! 2014 sure has gone by too fast, way too fast with me just holding on to a rope for support. This won't be a time to recount what has happened for the year - I have written moments here and there, posted photos and tweets of events and feelings (I have feelings, a lot), and I have etched in my mind hundreds and hundreds of memories. I have invested around and I'm picking up the yields of experience, tears, laughter, love, knowledge, and wisdom.

They say it comes in threes. 2013 gave me new people and a new environment to adapt to. It showed me there are still a lot to see and feel. It opened the walls. 2014 was the chance for me to make them flourish. So, what about 2015? Will there be a change in direction or would I just hang on for dear life or continue building what I have started?

Cheers even without beers, 2015. May you be better, so much better than 2014.