Last week, I went to Coron, Palawan with my family. I knew I’d love it because of the water activities/island hopping in store for us. We arrived at the Busuanga airport at around 4:30 PM and then, headed to our lodge that is less than an hour away from the airport - Birang’s Guesthouse. Even though it’s a little late already, we did a quick tour to Mt. Tapyas, and Maquinit Hot Springs. Then, we decided to have dinner at Santino’s Grill, which is actually on the same compound as our lodge.
I did not finish the steps at Mt. Tapyas because my siblings did not want to. We only did, maybe, a hundred. Still got a good view of Coron, though.
Here’s a picture of the most common mode of transportation in the island, a seven-seater tricycle.
The next day, our boat picked us at Birang’s docking site (yes, exactly at our lodge) at around 8 am.
Here’s a picture of my siblings and I taken while waiting for our boat.
We made use of the boat ride going to Kayangan Lake (and actually to all the other destinations) by taking photos.
Look at this not-so-cheesy photo of my parents.
On the other side of this view is the pristine Kayangan Lake. You have to make 300 steps to reach its pristine water. It was totally worth it!
After some fish feeding at the coral garden, we had sumptuous lunch at this beach, which I forgot the name. It’s a dining area, I guess, but it is still very beautiful. Our lunch was prepared by our boatmen, btw.
Candy-colored sky never fails to make me smile. I took this from our terrace.
Everyone was so excited for the next day’s island hopping!
It took us an hour to reach Malcapuya beach, which is on the other side of this view.
The pristine Malcapuya Island. I hope it forever stays untouched.
Mom’s obligatory Malcapuya photo! She said she was very happy to have been there. It shows! :)
Best beach I have ever been to, so far!
Next stop is at Banana Island. Still, great underwater view.
Our last stop, Bulog island.
Santino’s Grill late snacks for our last night.
I hope you’d have time to visit Coron, Palawan. We went there during peak season but I don’t think the islands were overcrowded. I suggest bringing an underwater camera (the underwater scenes are must-recorded!) and some water and chips because such supplies are quite expensive there.
(Let us please never ever make Coron a party site! Chos.)
Last week (Laboracay weekend), some of my college friends and I decided to go up north. We tagged along my sister and some friends of Diane so it’s also a weekend of gaining new friends for us. I totally loved everything about the trip! I just think that we should have visited the beach in Ilocos, where the house we stayed at is located. Supposedly, this is a celebration for last term’s success but unfortunately, not everyone in the group could come. (You, guys, owe us one!) I’m still glad we made this trip happen. It actually inspired me to travel more since I know now that I can travel without the family. (No, don’t get me wrong. I would choose traveling with my family over anyone else!) My budgeting skills could use some more furnishing, though.
(Photos are from Diane’s and Imee’s cameras)
First, we went to La Union to surf. We were only familiar with Kahuna Beach Resort prior the trip but we had to find a nearby resort that rents out cottages, and would allow us to use their shower rooms, for a lot cheaper price. We found a cottage (good for 30 people) that costs 2000php. It is located in a resort that’s 5 minutes away from the surfing spot.
I did not actually expect to enjoy surfing. I thought the sports’ not for me but hey! I’m now dying to go back!
Well, aside from surfing, we also took advantage of the fact that Diane was able to bring GoPro so we took (non-action) photos. We didn’t bring it during the surfing lesson and it was a good idea because we were able to really savor the experience which remembrance stays in our memories and in the few photos taken by Vianica.
(Lakas maka-ate nung akbay ko kay Imee dito!!)
This silhouette shot’s really cool!!
The next day, we went to Vigan. We had lunch at Cafe Leona’s where my sister had the Vigan specialties platter and I had sisig. The food was just fine -nothing so special. After lunch, we had a short calesa tour that brought us to the Bell Tower and Pagburnayan Pottery Making.
Our guide in the Bell Tower was really nice plus he’s a good photographer who directed us by suggesting poses.
Then, we went back to Calle Crisologo for some more photo ops!
Got to share an empanada (Irene’s) with Imee. (Not bad for 35 bucks!!) It was delicious but we like the one in MoA better.
After, we went to Baluarte, which we honestly did not really enjoy because we were tired already and there was not much to do because it’s just a park. There’s no entrance fee, and they have good sugarcane juice, though. Then, we headed to Marsha’s for pasalubong but they ran out of bagnet. (Super loved their brownies!!) We went back to Vigan to buy longganisa, bagnet, and chichacorn for pasalubong. Vigan trip was draining but worth the long walks and sweat!
The next day, it was time to go home. We left Ilocos at 1pm and then, had late lunch at Halo-Halo de Iloko in La Union. I’m so happy we ate there!! Sobrang sarap! You should try their bagoong rice.
Of course we couldn’t leave Halo-Halo de Iloko without trying their halo-halo.
Fiesta Halo-Halo costs 99php while the deep-fried one costs 185php
I suggest you, guys, also go on a trip to North. I’m definitely going back. (Pagudpud, please!!)
If you have read my 2013 year-ender post on my old blog, you’d know the damage that our thesis has caused me. We failed twice in one year! How depressingly sad could that be? Two months ago(?), we defended our thesis for the third time and finally, we passed! The effort and sacrifices we have given for thesis last term was probably beyond all the things we’ve done in our three years in college combined! Thesis has definitely changed me and taught me a lot of things. I’d like to share them with you.
Failing thesis for the first time was bearable. I’ve actually accepted the defeat even before the defense. I barely cried in front of my groupmates after hearing the verdict. Knowing that my parents are excited for my graduation was the only thing that forced me to believe that maybe we can defend our thesis well. We weren’t able to, and my parents were able to understand. The second time (we failed) was the worst. I cried so hard upon reaching our college’s busy lobby. I did not know how to tell my parents. But at the end of the day, they did what they could only do: accept it and remind me of the good news that I still have the next term to redeem myself and prove to them that I am so much better than that failure. My parents kept on telling me that I should analyze and list down the reasons of our failure and then, come up with better solutions to modify our current project. I must admit that we were not really able to correct all the wrong things we did during the past terms but in terms of determination (the passion/eagerness to pass) and communication among the group, I am sure we really did improve. We wanted to pass more than ever. We have sacrificed many crucial things and moments just so we could exert more time finishing our Case Management System. I, personally, have given so much more than what I thought I could give for a requirement in this course I swore I will never embrace in my entire life. Failing is part of life, it would just depend on us how we are going to use it to get even. Your failures do not define you, it is how you deal with it that shows the real you.
After all, your output is only as good as how you see it. This one’s something that I have always been missing. I am not good at talking in front of a crowd, (SPEECOM almost killed me) much more when I know I do not have enough knowledge on what I am to talk about. Honestly, during our thesis proposal, all I was thinking was to get our proposal approved. I’ve overlooked the possibility that we might not be able to actually develop it and other stuff I cannot seem to remember now. Come the system development, that’s the time I realized I am not so happy with our proposal. I thought we could have done better. I guess for our first two takes I failed to believe in what we are doing thinking there’s something better that we’re meant to be doing and maybe (JUST MAYBE) we should just start all over again. WHAT WAS I THINKING, NO?? But last term, I had no choice but let myself embrace this project and believe in our team and in our goal to make a system that will be helpful for our partner organization – DLSU’s Developmental Legal Advocacy Clinic. I believe that the whole team also believed more that we can finish what we had to, and that’s when we were able to present our project well and made our panel see what our project could offer. (Or didn’t we? Hehe)
For a while, I was full of regrets (e.g. I should’ve shifted out; I shouldn’t have entered this in the first place) but I knew I would not give up. Not when I have spent almost four years in this course I never imagined myself to be in nor did I ever wanted… not even at the point wherein I failed thesis TWICE already. For my case, I have failed but I had to bounce back just so I could finish what I’ve started (get a diploma) and shift all my efforts and time pursuing the career that I have always wanted. I have failed a lot, and in different aspects, but the mere thought of how my sacrifices would contribute to my success inspires me to continue and strive hard towards that sweet fine day when I can finally leave all things computer science–based and do what I have always dreamt of doing.
(There is still goodness in humanity because there are still people who choose to support others despite the numerous failures they’ve already made, and people who can be happy for others’ happiness.)
I’d like to dedicate this bullet to EVERYONE who supported, helped, and prayed for us toward this success. You, guys, know who you are. (Our dearest families and TEAM KANTO!!) Thank you to everyone who had nothing but good hopes for our project!!! THANK YOU VERY MUCH!! My “Good luck!”s have never been so genuine as last term. You know when you just seem to utter Good Luck when you know that someone’s going to a thesis defense, a presentation, etc.? Last term changed that for me. I meant every ‘Good Luck’ and ‘I’ll pray for you’ I said last term, the time when I know it is needed the most.
Lastly, HAVE FUN!! Whatever you are doing, have fun!! Best thing about my thesismates? They are also my friends. There were drama (very few, I guess) at times, but for most part, we found ways and reasons to enjoy what we are doing. There were random, late-night and very unhealthy food trips, music, movies, coffee, sabaw-ness, funny conversations, cutie inspirations, etc. to keep us up.
What is a quality read and why am I not drawn to it?
My recent reads were Fahrenheit 451 and The Library of Unrequited Love. Both are concerned with the future that, if does not completely put books away, contains no quality read and the main source of entertainment is the television. I had a great time reading both although Fahrenheit 451 was a little hard to stick to because it goes dull at some point and the choice of words just did not appeal to me. There, I have said it. The quality read that those books were pointing at were mostly the classic ones, and sadly, I have yet to learn how to read them. I like reading books written in a simple, narrative way. I want the authors to talk to me as how we talk today, and for that, I suck. What kind of a reader who does not read the classic? What kind of a (frustrated) writer who never appreciated the must-reads?
I want to find comfort in reading “great” books. I actually have a few classics with me but I only managed to finish Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, which I forced myself to read before watching the movie. I hope I’d know how not to be too overwhelmed when I pick up Animal Farm, Frankenstein, The Bell Jar, On the Road, Emma, Pride and Prejudice, and the newly-purchased Slaughterhouse-Five. (I found a mass paperback in Fully Booked!!!) I like buying classic books despite the fact that I do not read them. They will be perfect for my future library, I say. But I know that sooner or later, I will have to learn how to read those books and it will be for my own good. I read somewhere that the classics are those that do not stop to tell its message up to this day. I want to learn how to write a piece with an impact. I want to adapt the discipline that was exercised in writing classic books, and to be able to do so, I have to read them. I know it will not be easy to come out of my comfort zone and leave my contemporary young adult novels for a while but the sacrifice will surely be worth it!
My goal this summer is to finish (at least) three classic books. What’s a good classic title I can start with?
Just a few days ago, my most favorite band (EVER!!!) had another reunion concert in London. I know some would go like “WHAT? How about The Beatles?” or “Haven’t you heard Fall Out Boy?” or “Wala ka pala eh! Pano na Chicser?” CHOS!!! I’ve definitely heard of The Beatles and I am aware of how good their music is but I practically grew up with The Eraserheads’ music and it’s a Pinoy band. (Talk about Filipino pride!)
It hurts so much that I was not able to catch them live again but what can I do? I’m stuck here in the Philippines, endlessly hoping for the years to pass by so they can finally have a concert here again. I swear I’d be there, no matter how old they would be and how busy I would be by then! (Who knows, I could even be part of the production! Hehehe)
Side story: I actually went to their first reunion concert – first ever concert I went to! Unfortunately, we got in late. I was only able to catch around 3 songs, and then, the concert was cut due to Ely Buendia’s health condition. It was heartbreaking… I didn’t see them perform Ang Huling El Bimbo live! I saved up for their second reunion concert here in the Philippines but I didn’t know how to tell my parents that I’d go. Sobrang sayang!
As I wait for that reunion concert that I’ll (hopefully) be able to catch, I think I’d have to make the most of what I have – recorded clips of their concerts/gig on Youtube, the 2 CDs of them that I have: Anthology & the reunion concert cd, Star Cinema’s The Reunion that surprisingly had a good musical score, and limited music files that I listen to. (Limited because piracy feels so much like piracy for their music and I am too lazy to rip the CDs. Okay, maybe tomorrow I will.)
My favorite songs of the band are mostly the famous ones. Here’s a list:
Ang Huling El Bimbo – One of the greatest songs ever written and sung! People should stop making a cover of song if they are not worthy enough. Forgive the rage :)
Minsan – I only liked this song when I heard it in Ang Nawawala. Kean Cipriano’s version is also good.
With A Smile – “You’ll get along with a little prayer and a song.” I personally love the “prayer” reference, and yes, this is the perfect example of a song that will help you get along.
Huwag Mo Nang Itanong – I love singing this song!
Pare Ko, Magasin, Ligaya, Para Sa Masa, Torpedo, Alapaap, Spolarium, Toyang, Maselang Bahaghari, Sembreak, Fruitcake – It’s like every Eheads song can be in the soundtrack of my life!
PS What brought me to posting about The Eraseheads is this article.
I got really irritated when I saw Robin Laviña’s comment!! It’s THE Eraserheads imitating their idols’ THE Beatles’ famous album cover for a picture… what is so wrong about that??
Book: Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
This is one of the first few books I have read this year and it is now a favorite!!
Ever since this first came to the Philippines, I have been seeing it on bookstores and blogs but I never dared to buy a copy because it is quite expensive. (600php++ for a college student’s leisure book? No, thanks.) But then, my birth month came and I knew I wanted books (and many other things), so I got plenty of it for my birthday! (Reminds me that I should blog about my January book haul!) I got this with 20% discount. It is still more expensive than the mass-paperback version, which is quite expensive for a mass-paperback (400php++), but this cover is way more beautiful.
I loved the tone of the narrator in this book, not trying to impress and tells the story well. The main characters are just very relatable for my case because there was a bookstore clerk (secret dream job), a hottie geek and Google employee (not-so-frustration), a designer (frustration), a rich fella (ultimate dream), and book lovers! I got kilig when they mentioned computer and design stuff! I saw a little resemblance with the movie The Internship because of Google and the “time for change” components. There’s also mystery in the story and very little about love. I am not very much into mysteries but I enjoyed this prolly because of the choice of words and the riveting story.
I highly-recommend this book! I finished it in two days, and it only happens to me if I am very much into the story.
On the last day of this year’s first month, our family decided to go to Baguio! I was very excited since the past few weeks’ Manila weather was really good - cold. I even read some news that the temperature in Baguio dropped! It was a long weekend so many people headed to the country’s summer capital. We also passed by many roads under construction so the supposedly 6-hour drive was stretched to TWELVE HOURS. We only stopped once for lunch.
When we got there, the weather is not very cold. It gets cold in the evening but just enough not to have electric fan or airconditioner. Good thing, we stayed in a very nice place in Camp 7 so the beautiful view and vibes paid for my weather disappointment. Also, the patterns in that house were eye candies!
Best thing about this Baguio trip? Like the other cold places I have visited, the city is very photogenic! I love my Instagram (nexindi) posts during our stay there. I, now, love Session Road! It reminds me so much of Hong Kong, and I do not understand why I only realized it that time, when in fact, it was not my first time there. I went boating at Burnham Park, on our second night, with my siblings and dad. It was so much fun! After ~god knows how long~, I was able to eat strawberries again. Too bad, I was not able to try Vizco’s strawberry shortcake. Hopefully, I’d be able to go back soon because I’d love to explore the city by walking/commuting.
I have always loved dressing up since I was young. I loved playing paper dolls, which I still keep in a box. I also enjoy drawing them like I am a designer. I believe my grade school yearbook says that I wanted to be a fashion designer. I loved fashion magazines way before I learned the beauty of reading books, although, I couldn’t say that I follow trends. Roiworld was a site where I spent hours on because of its very pretty dress up games. I almost cried upon learning it shut down!
When I was younger, though, I did not enjoy shopping for clothes! I’d choose clothes for my dolls but I’d wear clothes that my parents bought for me. I think I only started caring about what I wear during the latter part of highschool.
I still like what I wore during our Christmas party in senior year:
I’ve always believed that red, black, and white is the safest combo pala! I miss you, girls!
Imagine my excitement (and honestly, frustration) when I learned that I am going to DLSU for college, where there is no uniform required. Casual clothes for school, it is! I’ve gathered some of my old photos in school showing my ‘style’. I’ve mostly enjoyed dressing up for school, be it obvious or not! And please believe me when I say that before #ootd became a popular hashtag, my facebook dp are (already) mostly showing my daily outfit! :)
As much as I wanted not to repeat an outfit, there were style pieces that I couldn’t help but overuse because of its comfortability, which is what school outfit pretty much shouts for, and versatility! (Not sure if it’s the best term to use, though) Adding to this must be the fact that I need to dress up for school four times a week.
I remember the black dress jumper, which is actually my sister’s, that I kind of overused during frosh year. I think I mostly paired it with a plain white t-shirt and black shoes? I actually forgot if I was also always in flat shoes when I was a frosh. It was very comfortable and I THINK decent enough for school.
That basic striped top was also my favorite and I think I almost bought another one when mom told me I should stop wearing it because the color started to fade.
My mom’s denim skirt also became one of my favorite pieces because I could pair it with anything!
That black pair of flats was probably my best ever since I still have it now and I could pair it with almost anything also. My shoes usually gets beat up easily but this Zara pair is one of the very few that survived!
The cream/yellow flats were from Landmark and I got it on sale. It also matches most of my outfit.
The pair of blue flats was a favorite find because it is very cute!
The heart necklace that I only stopped wearing when its lock got broken. It is my most favorite accessory ever!
So why did I overuse those pieces? Here are some reasons that I can think of:
I do not easily choose clothes to purchase. I swear, shopping of clothes, shoes, and accessories is a long process for me because I consider things like how often would I be able to wear it, do I have a piece to wear with that, was this made with good material, etc. Since most of my clothes were well-chosen, I make it to a point that I get to maximize its use!
Comfortability. Schooling is very exhausting and sometimes I just want to wear something that won’t bother me or add to the stress so I just play safe and wear something comfortable (and looks good) that I wore before.
I do not have a lot of shoes and accessories to choose from.
Laziness and being busy. Sometimes, I’m too tired and I just wanna grab the first thing I see in our drawer and put it on.
As for the downside of overusing fashion pieces, I think a big issue would be the thing being worn-out or damaged for washing it several times. (I am no laundry or cloth expert though, so that was purely based on my observation.) Another thing is also the sharing of photos in the social media. If you tend to post a lot of pictures on your online accounts, it is most likely that your online friends would notice the pieces that you always wear. Well, I don’t think that should be a problem unless you wouldn’t want them to think that you do not have plenty of clothes, or that you do not often have time for photo ops and when you do, you’re actually wearing the same shirt you wore in your recent photo lol.
So, this is just the start for my fashion posts. I’m no fashion blogger but I love sharing my style even on my old blog and my other accounts.
For a fresh start, I have finally decided to leave my old blog and make a new one - one that I wouldn’t mind to be read by anyone. The past year brought so much negativity to life and I just want to leave it there.
This year is mine and for everyone who keeps showering me with their undying love and support. Success will be ours this year.