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Showing posts from May, 2009

Not Marriage Material

I did came back from my vacation happy, relaxed and refreshed, but as I hurriedly got back into my usual life, some unexpected news hit my face with a splat. Sorry, it was more of a THUD. When I heard about the news, I couldn't breathe and that unexplainable pain was there again. I had to put on an unaffected face and told my friends I am absolutely fine, but deep within, my heart felt like a wobbly, melting jelly served on a sizzling platter. My ex got engaged. ("That SOB got engaged," was how it sounded in my head.)

How could someone, that you've been with for years decide to break up with you, but marry a girl he only knew for a year? I can't fathom any explanation to this, and I felt sick thinking that maybe I wasn't marriage material. It sucks, but it's a plausible explanation. I am going through some emotional turmoil right now; it's not as bad as it sounds (really), but I've been unable to concentrate on anything. I went from super high to …

Facing Singleness

Yes, millions are terrified of facing singleness. To avoid it we settle for less, hooking up and staying in stale relationships. We marry, divorce, and do it again. It's a vicious little cycle. In desperation, we read books on finding a mate, and when that doesn't work, we read books on how to live alone and love it. Sadly, neither approach solves the dilemma because being single is not a condition to be cured. Being single is natural, as natural as being together. One is not better than the other - they are complementary. (Judy Ford, Single: The art of being satisfied, fulfilled, and independent)

Travel: Venice

For me, Venice is my favorite place in Italy. While Rome sizzles like a barbecue grill during the summer, Venice's water canals and highways keep the city cool throughout summer. Dining al fresco is perfect in this city. Whether you'll be content with a pizza or just plain bread dipped in olive oil, you can't avoid being amazed and entertained how a city can be utilizing canals instead of streets.
Riding a taxi boat as we sailed underneath this bridge to another. Just another street canal... We stayed at a camping site and slept in one of those cute cabins. St. Mark's Square I love how houses have flowers hanging from their balconies. Taxi? Anyone? Let's go for a gondola ride. St. Mark's Basilica Part of St. Mark's Basilica This photo reminds me of the movie "Italian Job."

Travel: Barcelona

If you talk Barcelona, you talk architecture. I really enjoyed Barcelona and I was amazed at how stunning and fun this city is.

The Gaudi Dragon Fountain

Mosaic ceiling at Park Guell

Walk this way and tilted walking not allowed.

Entrance to Park Guell

This is one of the buildings you'll see at the park entrance.

What a strange looking window - Casa Batllo

My favorite Guadi designed house, Casa Batllo, located at the Illa de la Discordia (Block of Discord)

A closer look at the Sagrada Familia Temple entrance

The highlight of my trip, the Sagrada Familia Temple - another design by Gaudi.

Travel: Florence

I am grateful I was given the chance to study in Rome. It was an exceptional opportunity to learn about Italy's history, culture, language and people. But what made studying there fun was the out-of-town trips I took during the weekends. Florence is quite small but definitely alluring. The city is best discovered by walking, shopping (there's a huge open market while I was there), eating gelato, and of course, dining. Here are a few photos from my weekend trip to Firenze.

Piazza della Signora - other statues adorned the piazza
Piazza della Signora

Santa Maria Novella
The River Arno

Hiked all the way the top of Piazalle Michelangelo

Ponte Vecchio Bridge

Facade of the Duomo

Florence Duomo or Cathedral

Devoid Of Enthusiasm

For the past few days, it’s been a struggle to get out of bed. I feel devoid of enthusiasm. I thought that since I just had a wonderful weekend catching up with a high school classmate, trying out that new Filipino restaurant at Gaithersburg (lovely buffet), and absolutely enjoyed watching “Angels and Demons” at the theater, that I’d be more alive this week. I feel the entire opposite. Monday and Tuesday went by like a blur. Today, I'm having a hard time keeping my thoughts together.

Is there such thing as having too much fun? Or are these the classic symptoms of old age? This is one reason why I’ve always decided against reviving my dead social life because whenever I get my social schedule rolling, I feel the need to hibernate for the next few weeks or more. I am starting to be convinced that at this stage, being anti-social is not bad after all.

Today, I noticed frown lines on my face. What gives!

Travel: Sagada

Sagada is my mom's hometown. Although I grew up far from it, since I was born and raised in the province of Kalinga, this place has always been near and dear to my heart. I visit Sagada whenever I visit the Philippines, and enjoy the peace and relaxation I find in this beautiful place. The following photos were taken in the summer of 2007.

A dog relaxing

St. Mary's Church

I love how the houses were built on the side of this mountain

A view of the town

Sagada Weaving

Waterfalls

Rice fields

Harvesting Cabbage

Hanging coffins

"Adi tako bokodan di gawis"

A carved gecko on the top lid of a wooden coffin

Lucky you live here

This was the beautiful sunrise that greeted me. At this time, I was on my way down to Bontoc to catch my bus ride to Kalinga.

Ms. Pangilinan Declared An "Unwelcome Visitor"

I wasn't expecting this. In fact, I was ready to move on and forgive, but I was surprised to read this at the ABS-CBN News website. The city of Baguio declared Ms. Pangilinan as an "unwelcome visitor." Living outside the Philippines, this is the first publicized incident, that I know of, about a Filipino comedian delivering an offensive joke about Igorots. I mean, there are good and bad jokes. Ms. Pangilinan's joke was offensive and a really bad one. I have spoken to some friends back home, and apparently, some comedians have been making similar jokes for a long time, they just haven't been caught.

I honestly feel bad for her. On the other side of the coin, I feel empowered that the Igorots, as a community, and Baguio, as a city, have the power to convey a powerful message - putting down someone's ethnicity is not acceptable and is not tolerated. For the Igorot community has come a long way fighting and correcting the stereotypes and misnomer attached to thei…

Travel: Rome

In preparation for the movie "Angels and Demons," I'm posting some photos I took while I was studying in Rome. I was quite disappointed to know that some parts of the movie were shot at Sony Pictures Studios (Los Angeles) since Roman Catholic officials banned filming inside the churches; this is in lieu to the Catholic officials finding "The Da Vinci Code" offensive.

Rainy day outside the Pantheon

Fontana de Trevi (Trevi Fountain)
Roman Colosseum at sunset
Vittorio Emanuel
Interior of St. Peter's Basilica

Swiss Guards at the St. Peter's Square

Ceiling of the Sistine Chapel

This is the east wall - The Last Judgment by Michaelangelo

Pangilinan's Apology

I was browsing the Dap-ay Forums at Baguio City Online when I came across "Tao po ako, hindi po ako Igorot" (I am a person/human, not an Igorot) as one of the forum topics. Apparently, these words were uttered by Candy Pangilinan during a pre-Mother's Day show at SM Baguio as a joke. According to Jemz, a forum member, Ms. Pangilinan blurted her comments twice, and although she did apologize at the end of the show, the damage has been done. Clearly, her comments have offended some members of the Igorot community, including me. (To read comments on the forum, click here.) In her blog, Ms. Pangilinan issued an apology and explained that what she actually meant was "Igorot statue" but failed to say the word "statue."

As a proud Igorot, I have to admit that some people refer or label us in so many "uncalled for" terms. I am glad that the Igorot community is fighting back and is fully aware that we need to uphold and defend the Igorot identity. If…

Happy Mother's Day

Have a wonderful Mother's Day.

Eight

I snagged this tag from Kero. I like it because it's sort of a TO DO list which I really need to keep things in perspective. Feel free to snag.

Eight Things I'm Looking Forward To
vacation at the end of Maystarting grad school this fallsummer weekend road tripstrying out that new Filipino restaurant in Gaithersburggoing to see "Angels and Demons"baking cassava bibingka one of these weekendsgoing to see the opera Turandot next monthgoing shopping this weekend for a new bagEight Things I Did Yesterday
picked up prescription at the pharmacysubmitted board meeting materialsfried marinated bangus for dinnerwashed disheswatched Shrek 2 and Polar Express DVDsprepared Mother's Day cards and letterstook the Metrowalked through the rain on my way homeEights Things I Wish I Could Do
go shopping with my sister and brotherspend time with Mom and Dad in Hawaiibecome a home ownerget to a healthy weightvisit Greece, Turkey, London, Paris et al.become better in adjusting to changesst…

Big Island Postcards

My parents are thinking of going to the Big Island this summer. I am so jealous. I was there in 2002 and 2005, but of course I want to go again. Here are the photos I took in 2005.
Rainbow Falls

Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park, the site of Hawaiian settlements

Resting on Punalu'u's Black Sand Beach

Mauna Loa stands watch over the steam vents

Walking on lava...destination is where the smoke is

View of Hali na Pali

Exploring Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park

Waipio Valley