"a caterpillar doesn't just grow into a butterfly. a caterpillar must undergo metamorphosis, and a cocoon is where a caterpillar risks it all: enters total chaos, undergoes total rebuilding, and is born to a new way of living. only in taking the risk of entering that inert cocoon can the caterpillar go from dormancy to potency, from ugliness to beauty."

Saturday, December 31, 2005

new year, new list

this 2006, i will...
1. do more
2. eat more
3. sleep more
4. drink more (i mean water, okay)

Monday, December 26, 2005

good as gone

Dreams say what they mean,
but they don't say it in daytime language.

--Gail Godwin

remember this?

after quite a long time, i dreamt of him again.

just like the last time, i didn't see his face, i doubt if i ever will... but i knew it was him. he was standing a good distance away from me, and, weird it may be that i could tell, he was looking at me.

i couldn't see his face but i could feel his eyes on me, and i just felt the need for me to look away.

i did look away, but only for awhile. when i looked again, he was still there, standing a good distance away from me, but he's no longer looking at me... he had turned such that he had his back facing me.

...and then, he started walking away, slowly and without a sound.

i was tempted to call out his name when he started to go, but i held back knowing that even if i did, he wouldn't turn around for me. so i just looked as he trodded away to where i don't know. i looked until i got so familiar with his back, until the distance ate him up, until he faded and became one with the horizon.

i had this dream and, in less than a year, it became real. tsk. maybe i'm clairvoyant or something.

i never thought it would really happen but it did, anyway. a painful deja vu, it was. without a word, he was good as gone. things got complicated, our friendship got ruined, and i never got to find out why he had to go in the first place. eventhough i was left free, i was also left confused. perhaps, that's what hurt me most.

i remember a lot -- from the first text message he sent me more than five years ago to the last one he sent in september, from "Patay..." to "Hmm", from the first "Hi..." to the last "Good night" in Y!M, from the line "sa wakas..." to "see you" when we last met in may, and all the lines in between. they haunt me. i should forget, but i suck at forgetting.

if only things could go back to how they used to be, then i would do things differently. it is clear to me now that our regrets tend to stem from the things we should have done but did not do.

he is scared of me -- this i knew even before he told me so. honestly, it stings like a hard slap on the face. for not denying who i am, i was put on a pedestal i didn't want to be on and, for that, one of the prices i have to pay unwillingly is to live with the threat that he'll see me as someone who'll always be beyond him. it hurts a lot to know that by choosing to be myself, i ended up alienating the very person whom i believed to be my soulmate... but i cannot deny who i am and i cannot choose to be not myself -- i can only be nicer.

how can i convince him now that the pedestal is just an illusion, that we are actually on the same plane, that we belong to the same ground? how can i, when he is there -- there where i cannot see him, where i cannot touch him, where i can barely feel him (if, indeed, i still do feel him at all)? the horizon he faded into is out of my reach and i don't know if there is still anything that i can do to change the way things are... but i still think of him. fondly... because i loved him. i love him still. i think i will forever do. geez, i'm so pathetic. (i just gave my friends a reason to disown me. ha ha)

maybe someday he'll emerge from the horizon. maybe someday he'll come around again to give me a friendly shove and say, "ikaw gyud, madrama ra kaayo ka." then, i'll have to playfully shove him back and we'll both be laughing like silly high school kids.

maybe there won't be that someday at all.

tsk. i should have dreamt of winning the lottery instead. if only i had known... i would have been filthy rich by now. he he.

Friday, December 23, 2005


23.23: because a 23-year old shares some things on the 23rd day of the month...

>> the 17th of december was my last day as a 22-year old and here are the highlights of that day:

looking for my research logbook
owing to "thesis my quest (to follow that star...hahaha)," i'm expected to work on my thesis while i'm home for the holidays. however, the very thing i needed to bring home with me to do just that, I LOST. argh!

my research logbook is (was?) where i write (wrote?) down all my thesis-related thoughts and i realized it was missing the day before i was set to fly out of manila. argh!!! all is not lost, however, thanks to my 'OC-ness'! i still have with me softcopies of my data files and some reference materials. i can build things up again from what are left. still, the research logbook that i've been writing on for almost two years now is MIA (as in missing in action) and that really hurts! experimental details... calculations... databank... wawaaaa...

part of me is really still hoping that i would find it again. i must.

purchasing a monitor
last october, i wrote about my laptop going bonkers. i also shared that i was able to fix it. unfortunately, my gadget must really be possessed with unknown spirits. it went bonkers again and refused to allow me to see the display. i gave up fixing it on my own and brought it to the repair center where it was diagnosed with a busted LCD. pooof! since i don't want to spend a fortune on having the LCD replaced and since i don't want to part ways with my laptop just yet, the solution i thought of was to have an external monitor.

as a birthday gift to myself, i purchased a monitor.

ladies and gentlemen, my laptop is now a compact desktop platform that functions as a CPU and keyboard and mouse and modem and etcetera all-in-one (everything but the display!). ha ha!

ay shucks! i can't bring my laptop just about anywhere anymore. hu hu.

painting in starmall
there's a "let's paint" booth there in starmall that sells pre-designed plasters of paris. one can either choose to buy the already painted ones or pay for the bare plasters and then paint. my friend yoni and i, artistically inclined people that we are, spent almost 3 hours painting our respective blocks of plaster. we actually took pictures of our works using our phones but i couldn't share the pics just yet because i currently don't have access to an IR reader. i'll just share more about this painting activity (and the pictures) in a future article. ;-)

>> i turned 23 in manila but i was able to spend most of my 23rd birthday in mindanao and with the comfort of my family, as planned. hehehe. for that, i'm immensely grateful. i was able to watch peter jackson's king kong, too!

i would like to say thank you to the following people who greeted me: ate riza, jerms, ayn, papang, mamang, vl, nikki, sealdi, yoni, shella, anne-anne, naoms, tita emie, haidee, tita binbin, rose marie and ilian, johncy, blue, jezer, tiffany and jericho, lorie, bau, tita yenyen, kuyang, rainman, michi, ivan, chi, kuya eli, wynn, benjie, edson, micmic, ann, iris, joyce, sir ian, dumay, jp, randy, haniko, kurt, ducay, loublanc, babypink, kars, ayeza, ate pie, sir rodion, and kuya richard.

to all those who forgot and conveniently forgot, i dedicate to you my personal favorite among all the pics i took of my 22-year old self:

cute naman ako ah! (ha ha!)

>> my first appearance in a social gathering as a 23-year old was the wedding of my friends, jerk and tiff, who got married on the 21st day of december. i got dolled up for the occasion, my hair was swept up, and i even wore a nice sleeveless long dress!

from left to right: the wedding kiss, the wedding entourage (one of those very rare moments when our barkada can be labelled 'itsurang tawo!' hehehe)

not only was i part of the pair that put the cord around the couple during the wedding ceremony, i also became one of the emcees during the wedding reception.

yeah, i know. me?! a wedding emcee?! honestly, i never thought i could do it. i never thought it was possible but i was thrown into the duty IMPROMPTU when nobody else among our barkada was willing to. i didn't actually have the heart to disappoint my friends and ruin the great day by refusing, so i relented and everyone felt relieved and happy.

yeah, when nobody else wants to, and if we're good friends, there's a good chance that i can be convinced to be your wedding reception emcee for free, hehehe... (just make sure you have your preferred spiels ready if you want me to do things 'your way'. ha ha.)

>> ouch ha! parang andaming super importante sa 'kin ang nawala this year. sobrang pagsubok itetch. ouch ouch talaga. BUT NOOOOOOOOOOOO...

i know and really still believe that i'm still so blessed! weeeeeeeeeeeeeee... whatever happens, there's always a bright patch. every day's a brand new sky, after all. i'm definitely going to buy my dreams with all my todays and all my tomorrows. todo risk-taking na!

therefore, to hell with suckers. ha ha.

>> merry christmas and happy new year, everyone!!! ;-) i leave you with this face...

aye, that's my niece!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

love me, hate me, or just sue me

Lelaina: I was really gonna be something by the age of 23.
Troy: Honey, the only thing you have to be by the age of 23 is yourself.
Lelaina: I don’t know who that is anymore.

-- lines from that 1994 movie, Reality Bites

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Saturday, December 10, 2005

my 2005 movie list

who me? a movie addict? nah. that's rubbish. that's very, very rubbish.

want me to prove my point? check out my 2005 movie list (a.k.a. movies i've watched on the big screen this year):

january - panaghoy sa suba, kung fu hustle, ocean's twelve, meet the fockers, blade trinity

february - a very long engagement, phantom of the opera

march -

april - miss congeniality 2, robots, guess who (blech!), closer, sahara, the wedding date, the interpreter

may - kingdom of heaven, star wars episode iii: the revenge of the sith (thrice: different cinemas, different days, different buddies)

june - sin city, shutter, mr. and mrs. smith, madagascar, batman begins

july - hotel rwanda, fantastic four, pinoy blonde

august - charlie and the chocolate factory

september - great raid, sky high, the truth about love, cinderella man, sound of thunder

october - transporter 2, a history of violence, the corpse bride, lord of war (twice: different cinemas, different days, different buddies), the 40-year old virgin

november - flightplan, harry potter and the goblet of fire

december - ang pagdadalaga ni maximo oliveros, just like heaven

i can't believe the month of march has no entry! i must have forgotten a movie-watching session somehow; it seems so inconsistent with the other months and it just doesn't seem right.

methinks my list of movies-seen-on-the-big-screen for this year will end with just like heaven. king kong, the chronicles of narnia: the lion, the witch, and the wardrobe, memoirs of a geisha, superman returns, pirates of the carribean 2, ice age 2, x-men 3, vendetta... will tempt me this coming 2006.

on second thought, maybe i'll get to watch king kong this year.

again, who me? a movie addict? i already told you, that's rubbish! that's very, very rubbish. hahahaaah... oh yeah!

addendum: i was able to watch the movie constantine early this year. maybe i watched it last march.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

pagdadalaga and overspending

yesterday was supposed to be just another saturday but, no, things didn't turn out that way.

friday became saturday for me without me getting any sleep. cinema buddy's saturday started out bad, she being so tired and sick from her trip and having had to survive a ride on a taxi driven by a bad-ass driver. eventhough our day didn't start off right and both of us were in dire need of sleep and it was even drizzling late yesterday afternoon, cinema buddy and i still hied off to the movie house to watch ang pagdadalaga ni maximo oliveros, a local film so raved about that we couldn't afford to forego seeing it. our attitude for the day was 'to hell with sleeping!'

just as well. the movie didn't disappoint. sure, i have some complaints with the lighting and the panning, but the plot and the material were so nicely dealt with -- everything seemed so real. the actors played their respective roles so well, it was easy to relate with their characters. over-all, the movie was good, amusing and entertaining -- i forgot about being so sleepy and laughed my heart out instead during the comic twists. don't get me wrong, the movie isn't exactly a comedy. so as not to give so much spoilers, let me just say that the movie is more than just an amusing tale of the coming-of-age of a boy who is truly a beautiful girl at heart; it is also a movie of life and struggles in an urban-jungle community where crime is the accepted way of life even for loving fathers and protective brothers. both sadness and happiness are depicted on the film, and the young actor who played maximo's so convincingly soft and feminine, i can't help but envy the way he swayed his hips as he navigated through the narrow alleys in the neighborhood which he calls home.

watching pagdadalaga successfully shooed away our sleepiness that after the movie, cinema buddy and i weren't compelled to go back straight to the dorm to hit our respective beds, and we decided to feed our hungry mouths instead. we had wanted to eat at tokyo tokyo but the line of people waiting for their turn to order scared our tummies. we then decided to have a yellow cab saturday -- and this is where our overspending story comes in...

at this point, i just have to share what my father keeps reminding me: "every centavo we have, we worked hard for. we don't have much money to spend, so always be careful with your spending. when it comes to food though, be kind to yourself; do not hesitate to spend."

when it comes to food, do not hesitate to spend. cinema buddy and i took this to heart. by the time we finished paying for the things we ordered (one box of whole pizza plus a box of chicken wings plus two good-for-two bottles of iced tea), we realized that we're left with only 14 pesos and 50 centavos!!! goodness! the minimum fare (for one person) from sm north to the campus is 10 pesos! in between our crazy laughter, we sort of panicked and asked ourselves, 'how in the world are we going to go back to the dorm?!' she thought of calling up our friends, while i thought of the remote possibility of us finding a ten-peso coin somewhere along our way out of the mall, ha ha ha. with no useful means to access our respective savings accounts, with no other friends in sight, we were left with only 14 pesos and 50 centavos, our money-zapper food, our priceless wits and our equally priceless sense of humor!

our yellow cab feast

money-zapping they may be, we were happy with our yellow cab pizza, our chicken wings and our bottles of iced tea -- nobody can pay for the fulfillment we got from filling our tummies with them. we didn't find the ten-peso coin i thought we would find but we managed to get back to the dorm without wounding our pride -- we didn't beg passers-by for our fare; we didn't put our dignity on the line. our wits and wicked sense of humor saved us from our recklessness and gave us a night so full of laughter we'd surely not forget. we hailed for a taxi and told the driver to drive us to the campus. i was so amused with the situation that we had gotten into, i kept on laughing all throughout the ride. when we finally got back to the dorm, i rushed to my room to grab some money for fare while cinema buddy remained inside the taxi cab to serve as 'collateral', ha ha ha ha!!!!

p.s. (1) let's do math the easy way: cinema buddy = the volcano = the collateral. Q.E.D. (2) sealdz, how did we become so demented? hehehe (3) just like heaven is the other film i watched on the big screen this weekend. my primary reason for watching it? mark ruffalo.

Friday, December 02, 2005

bisdak-s in the city

hala ka doh. dear diary jud kaayo ni. kung tapulan ka mobasa, ayaw na lang jud basa.

ako na jud sa busy kaayo og kalag (char!). murag all over the place ra kaayo akong drama. niadtong miaging biyernes, gikan diliman, nakaabot kog bicutan, taguig ako ra isa. naa koy gilakad nga butang nga naa jud tawon kalambigitan sa akong kaugmaon. hinuon, dili man to nako first time moadto didto nga ako ra isa. bisan talawan kaayo ko ug grabe akong pagka-talakitoks (kung motukar), maayo man ko maglaroy-laroy nga walay kuyog. ako pah! tapos from bicutan, nibalik kog diliman to attend to my duties (pagkabam!). boring? wala pa ko nahuman, okay. relaks lang bay. nanukad pa lang ko...

adtong done na ko sa akong duties for the day and medyo pangitngit na, nibiya na pud kog diliman ug akong gidala akong self didto sa shangri-la plaza sa mandaluyong. niadto ko didto kay naa didto naghulat akong gwapa nga amiga ug tulo mi kabuok nag-abot didto kay bisitaon namo among cook nga nagsakit. sosyal among cook (dili jud basta basta kay naa gud syay foreign accent, valedictorian pa jud sa high school). busa adtong nagsakit siya, nagpa-admit jud siya didto sa hotel... este... sa medical city. kami na jud sa akong mga gwapa nga amiga sa mga mobisita kay wala jud mi nagdalidali. nag-kaon-kaon, nag-tabi-tabi ug nag-lakaw-lakaw pa mi sa may pasig before mi nakasakay og taxi padulong sa medical city a.k.a. hotel nga hospital. okey ra biya among cook, dengue ra man iyang sakit (aaaay! medyo kulba pud biya diay) pero kelangan lang jud niyag moral support (charrus!) and show of concern from her trusted friends (ahem ahem).

after sa among hospital-slash-hotel visit and after nakakaon kog persimmon (ha, dili na jud ko igno og persimmon kay katilaw na jud ko!), nangadto mi sa akong mga gwapa nga amiga sa watering hole didto sa shangri-la, mandaluyong for another all-girls night out (kami na jud!). nalingaw mi sa among gipang-order na san mig light and tequila sunrise. hehehe, mura mig kinsang mga korek. adtong napul-an nami didto sa watering hole (kay nahurot na among mga gipang-order), nangadto mi sa malate. wait! wala mi nag-malate para magpadayon og inom or what, nangadto mi didto para matulog didto sa condo unit sa akong amiga. hapit one o'clock mi naka-abot sa malate pero sa sobraan namo katabian, alas-tres sa kadlawon nami nakatulog. kami na jud sa mga daghan ikapagarpar, bahalag makulangan og tulog basta makatabi lang. kay mga tabian lagi! ana jud tingali pag puro bisaya mag-abot. pagkabuntag, nanguli nami sa among tagsa tagsa ka ginasak-an. taymsa ha, dili pa end of story. dili pah. ingon biya ko nga taas ni...

so, di ba, from malate nibalik kog diliman (to attend to my duties again, charrus). tapos, pagkahapon kay nagkuyog mi ni volcano padulong sa gateway didto sa cubao para makigkita sa among kaubang bisdak nga si jory. ang plano man jud adto kay magkitakita ang mga manila-based bisaya bloggers pero kay kami ra man ang ever-present sa mga kitakits, kami rang tulo ang nag-abot. nag-food trip na sab mi!

among first stop (after checking out digital cameras on display in gateway) kay ang hotshots sa araneta area; nanglibre si jory og burgers and fries. tungod kay pare-pareho man ming mga hayok sa camera ug mahilig magpicture-picture, gikuhaan jud namog hulagway among gi-order ug ang among mga selves. kay kailangan jud lagi i-document ang laag...

from hotshots, niadto mi sa nearby ice monster and ordered three cups of our chosen flavors. lingaw kaayo mi sa among gibuhat. samot pa ming ka-happy adtong na-realize namong tulo nga pare-pareho diay mig dream destination dire sa pilipinas: batanes!

over cups of ice treats, we became instant future-batanes-trip-buddies. amo jud giplano kung kanus-a mi mangadto up north. among aim kay at the age of 23, dapat makatunob na jud mi sa batanes. abi jud nako nga ako ray excited kaayo mag-batanes. juice mio, mas excited ang jory! gusto niya insigida, "now na!", ora mismo manglupad naming tulo pa-batanes. unsaon?! pero siyempre, kelangan pugngan ang excitement sa bata, kay unsaon na lang, di ba?

from ice monster, ningsulod mig balik sa gateway para i-check ang screening sked sa mga salida kay basin diay maengganyo ming manan-aw og sine (pagka--- na lang jud namo!). medyo wala man mi na-excite sa mga salida nga showing kay kita naman mi sa latest harry potpot starring the visually yummy cedric diggory and the stunning viktor krum, so ning-proceed mi sa next item sa among itinerary (ehehehe, itinerary sa among hunahuna ra gud) --- tan-aw og concert didto sa may e. rodriguez! take note ha, nag-change mig venue... from gateway, ningsakay mig taxi para padulong didto sa e. rodriguez to watch a free concert.

samtang nagbiyahe mi padulong e. rodriguez, gikanta jud namo ang 'most requested song' in visayas and mindanao... ang 'people stay'! syempre, pare-pareho ming bisdak nga nagdako sa northern part of mindanao, so kabisado jud namo ang tono sa kanta... hahahah

people stay in cagayan, cagayan park view hotel...
in the middle of the city, you'll sleep like a baby...
i like to stay in cagayan... park view hotel!!!

aaaaay, naa pud diay mi trip nga bag-ong kanta nakuha from the concert, ang maka-LSS nga 'dzyey'.

dzyey don't know that i come running home when i fall down...
dzyey don't know who picks me up when no one is around...

hahaha, grabeng yaga-yaga. after sa concert, wala mi kabalo kung unsa among sunod buhaton. half-hearted mi mouli, half-hearted sab mi magpadayon og laag kay hapit naman to alas-onse. sa among pagkawalay klaro, nakabalik na lang mig gateway, wala pa mi ka-decide kung unsa ba jud. ningsulod mig 7eleven. naghinanggatay mi nga mangaon na sab, pero pare-pareho ra sab ming nangdecline. naghinanggatay sab mig inom, pero pare-pareho ra sab ming nibalibad. mag-greenbelt daw aron change na pud og venue, pero wala ra pud nadayon. kami na jud sa mga wala kasabot sa among mga gusto. so, nagdecide na lang mi nga manguli. 'okey, manguli na ta. manguli na jud ta' but noooooooooooooooo....

nakakita mig pagkaon sa bread talk og nakakita sab mig starbucks, so nakalimot na hinuon mi nga manguli na diay mi. ang ending, instead na mangatang na unta mig sakyanan pauli, nisulod mig starbucks, nag-order og 2 cups of frappucino and 1 cup of tea tapos niadto mi sa bread talk aron mokaon og higante nga pan.

pag pare-parehong mga laagan og tabian jud lagi nga mga bisdak ang mag-uban... lingaw to the max jud!

still photos from the making of 'handumanan sa usa ka awit' the movie
featuring the song 'people stay' (with 'dzyey' as bonus track), hahaha

pagka-ugma, wala pa mi sumhi og lakaw-lakaw, nag-abot na sab ming tulo! mura pud mig wala pa sumhi sa among mga dagway, sige lang mig kitakita. nangadto mi sa warehouse sale sa national bookstore ug nagkugi jud tawon mig pangukay sa mga kalibrohan didto sa pioneer st., mandaluyong. (kay mga book-lovers lagi!!!) tapos, bisan sobraan na mi kakapoy sa among kabuang, gipahimuslan jud namo ang mrt og lrt 3 kay libre man ang rides. from boni station, niadto mig cubao station para motunob sa AMOANG gateway ug magpakabusog (kaon na sab!), tapos sakay sa lrt 3 aka purple line aron monaog sa gilmore. grabe na. kami na jud sa mga nangitag lingaw. pati railway transpo gi-trip-an!

adtong monday kay holiday man, so niadto kog alabang aron manimpalad ug mag-invest sa future sa pilipinas (ahem ahem, walay moangal, maabilidad biya ko). tapos kagabii kay nakaabot kog san pedro, laguna kay ningkuyog ko sa akong amahan para bisitaon iyang cute nga apo nga cute nako nga pag-umangkon. from laguna, nibyahe mi pabalik metro manila ug natulog mi sa makati, tapos kaganinang buntag nibalik na sab ko sa diliman.

lakawana jud nako oi. ako na jud! in fairness, wala pa pud baya ko nalipong. hala ka, ugma kay weekend na sab...

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

goodbye, november!

"Hang your favorite dream on a star,
wish upon a Christmas night."

-- A Wish on Christmas Night, Jose Mari Chan

Lilypie Baby Ticker

la la la la la la...

here comes my favorite month of the year! welcome, my december! oh yes, more than being Christmas month, it's my month! oh yes, it's my month!

come they told me, pa rum pum pum pum

the little drummer boy's pa-rum-pum-pum-pums will probably bounce all over my head all throughout december -- a fitting soundtrack to match my excitement for this year's last month.

this december...

* i have every plan of celebrating my birthday at home... so i hope, the universe will not conspire against me. even the airline companies SHOULD NOT get in the way.

* i'll MAKE personalized greeting cards for my happy friends and send each card their way wherever they may be in the galaxy. if you're my friend and you're not happy, sorry, i won't make you a card.

* i want to treat my BEAUTIFUL gal friends from high school to a jose cuervo especial tequila night. i'm serious, so better get ready!

* we'll try painting in starmall. i don't know the details yet, but i'm excited because it'll be fun time with friends.

* i'll be attending the wedding of jerk and tiff, two of my very close friends, whose lovelife i've been watching over since the time they were 'just friends'. it'll be my first time to witness a marriage of friends who are about my age. i'm looking forward to the occasion because not only will i be seeing my friends get married (after their more than half a decade of courtship and friendship), i'll also be one of those who'll put the cord around them as part of the ceremony. they asked me to 'bind them as one' and despite my initial reluctance (because i know i'll be required to wear a nice long dress, hahaha), i agreed. i then told our friends jokingly that i'll surely use the cord to strangle both of them if they decide to break apart! mwahahaha. i'm excited to see them exchange marriage vows and i wish them all the happily-ever-afters and definitely NO breaking-aparts.

* i'll be HOME for christmas! can anything be more happier than that? i'm a december baby and i don't believe in having a merry little christmas. no sir, no ma'am, merry little christmases are not for people like me. i say, catch the true christmas spirit! you don't have to spend a lot of money, you only have to spend quality time with your loved ones, feel the warmth, catch and spread the happiness dust...

happy, it's so nice to be happy, sha la la la
everybody should be happy, sha la la la

december babies, it's our time to take over the world! weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee...

p.s. sana lang talaga walang kj at walang panira ng good mood.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

his question

Childhood is measured out by sounds and smells and sights, before the dark hour of reason grows.
--John Betjeman

last july, my cousin, who's now based in singapore, brought his young family to the philippines for a vacation. during their stay in metro manila, they occupied a room on the 9th floor of the peninsula manila in makati. at that time, my tita and cousins from the states were also staying in the hotel, just 2 doors away. owing to close family ties and all, my elder brother, my cousin from dumaguete and i stayed with them and spent leisure hours in the hotel. at one point, while we were waiting for the lift, my cousin's then 4-year old son drew away the curtains in the waiting area and looked through the glass. because we were on the 9th floor, he got a good view of the ayala avenue-makati avenue intersection and the ayala cityscape.

him: why does your country look so old?
me: will you say that again?

when he asked the question, i wasn't looking at what he was seeing so i didn't know where his question came from. i was taken aback when i saw that he was looking at the buildings surrounding ayala avenue. goodness, they're relatively new!

him: it looks so old. your country looks so old. why does it look so old?

the inquisitive innocent

he rendered me momentarily speechless. fortunately, my 15-year old cousin from the states who has seen much of the countryside butted in. the conversation went like this...

15-year old cousin: the philippines is actually the best place that i've ever been to. this is your country, too, you know. we may be growing up elsewhere but this is our country, too.
him: nooooo. its looks so old.
15-year old cousin: if we really think about it, countries are old.
me: (addressing my innocent-looking but bold nephew) so, you don't want to call this country yours too solely because it looks so old?
him: yes!
me: but you like us... you like the people here, don't you?
him: yes!
me: sweetie, you're still indeed a little kid. you're looking at just one cityscape and that's not the entire country, but you like the people. that's good.
him: hey, i'm four and eleven-twelfths! i'll be five soon.
me: i know... but being five will still make you a little boy. grrrr???
him: grrrr...
15-year old cousin: grrrr... you two look cute when you do that.
together: grrrr...
me: grrrr... jud. mahurot akong english sa inyoha mga bataa mo.
them: huh?

grrrr... that question, that 'old country' question. i still carry it with me. whenever i find myself in a high-rise building and i look through the glass windows and see a cityscape, his question echoes.

iba talaga 'pag bata ang nagtanong.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

ice cream, anyone? everyone!

In my life, priceless batteries are included.

i like the way the wind's been blowing on my face. i love the way it's been touching my hair. i'm feeling good these days and i'm feeling grateful for a lot of things...

i have a supportive family. even if they don't really understand what i'm doing and even if what i really want to do with my life is not clear to them, they're with me and they continue to encourage my dreams.

there are those who root for me. even in times when i doubt myself and my abilities, there'd always be people who would willingly give me a push and who would remind me how far i can go.

there are individuals who pray and strive for my happiness.

i am surrounded with people who make me want to become a better person.

i never had to really go through something so tragic. i have no reason to be bitter.

i am loved... even by those whom i alienate.

i have friends who live with my quirks and who never give up on me even in times when i'm being impossible.

i'll never be alone.

latâ kaayo noh? he...he...he... i'm really, really feeling good these days. i feel like i want to buy everyone ice cream... but hey, i can't pay for everyone -- so blag lang sâ! ;-)

Monday, November 21, 2005

free spirits

The human spirit is stronger than anything that can happen to it.
--C.C. Scott

the other weekend was a walk-around-the-city/wall-climbing weekend spent with my friends from college.

p6peeps smiles
p6peeps in manila: clownin' around
we used to be five, now we're six.

wall-climbing: the caterpillar way
whoohoo, i conquered my acrophobia again!

last weekend was lasingan/celebration weekend spent with four of my gal friends from high school. we had full bottles of bailey's irish cream, smirnoff red vodka, blueberry vodka cruiser, and san miguel super dry right in the living room of our friends' condo unit somewhere in malate... but nobody got drunk. pagka-walay challenge. maybe next time, kung inom lang ang among tuyo, mag-tanduay, anejo rhum, red horse og ginebra san miguel na lang mi! hehehe. click here for the related story. (warning: the link may take ages to open, but it's worth the wait. click refresh or reload if you don't see the entry for november 21.)

empty bottles and our trusty gadgets

portraits of a certified diligent student, hahaha!

i've finally seen her. she got most of her looks from my kuya -- from the hair, to the china eyes, to the lips -- and it's not just me talking, even her mother and her maternal grandparents say so.


mabait at maporma kung tulog

mataray at sobrang likot kapag gising

as of yesterday, she's only four days old, but oh my...when i laid my eyes on her, it was made clear to me that my bratty days are already numbered. yes, i'm going to be dethroned! she got the looks, the charm, and the attitude kaya wala talaga akong laban, hahaha.

Thursday, November 17, 2005


of the many babies born today, one of them is truly special to me.

she came to this world at 4:06 a.m. philippine time. she is my brother's first born, my parents' first grandchild, and my sisters' first niece. she's my niece, too!!! because of her, i'm now officially a tita. weeeeeeeeeee.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

caterpillar narcissism 101

i learned something cute from one of my labmates the other day. it goes like this...

Everybody hates me.
Nobody loves me.
I guess I have to eat some worms.
Worms? I hate worms!
They drive me crazy.
Crazy? I used to be crazy!
They locked me in my room until I died.
Die? I don't wanna die!
Worms're gonna eat me.
Worms? I hate worms...

...and so it goes. you have to say the words in a childlike manner. i'm telling yah, it sounds cute! it's fit for individuals who have the tendency to have their 'own worlds' -- individuals like me. wait 'til you hear me. mag-advertise ba.


i like taking my own pictures. i feel i look good in pictures if i take them myself. i can also afford to make faces without feeling so conscious. that is why, i adore those cameras with self-timers. i also love my phone's built-in camera because it has a mirror feature which allows me to check if i look fine or not before i activate the shutter with a click. self-timers and mirror features are A-ok with me... and so are the 'review photos' capability of digital cameras. if the on-screen version ain't good, choose delete! heheha.


it's been six months since i last had my hair cut. it has grown so long, i don't seem to know what to do with it anymore. if i have it cut, i might end up not liking it anymore. if i don't have it cut, it'll grow longer and i will not like it anymore. unsa bah... ayokong problemahin.


when i write for my blog, i don't exactly write for other people. it's more like i'm writing for myself because i want to read myself and be able to see what kind of person i am in somebody else's reckoning, as well as keep track of the very thoughts and things that i'm up to. i guess, it's safe to say that there may be no other greater reason for my blogging than 'narcissistic tendencies'. now, who likes to contest?

Thursday, November 10, 2005

in need of omega 3

heart of mine, how will you keep from dying?
stop reminiscing.

-- heart of mine

my heart broke so perfectly into a million and one pieces -- had the wind fiercely blown the tiny pieces away, they would have scattered like bloodied rose petals on the ground and become puzzle pieces that would never again fit...

...but my heart broke so perfectly -- every piece still so into place -- that it is now more than just a broken heart; it is also a kaleidoscope of memories that're really not memories, of stories that went untold, of moments left unshared, of unborn beginnings, of questions unanswered, of hopes and dreams that never fade away with every stubborn tear that falls, of sorrows that scurry away with every laughter that rings, of stars wished upon night after night, of love that grows and grows and refuses to die, of time that goes on and on.

dear Doctor,
i like kaleidoscopes but my heart needs to heal. please make the master of my favorite mind games understand that i don't want to regard him as 'one friend less', even if that's what he wants to be. go and check on him, too. give him all the best -- even those that are meant for me -- will you?

Sunday, November 06, 2005


congratulate me fellow netizens! i survived ten (10) days of internet hiatus without withdrawal syndrome. internet junkie that i am, i regard that as a feat. clap! clap! clap!

you might be wondering what i've been up to. well, nothing much really except that...

1. i left metro manila and headed for iloilo
october 24. monday. my labmates and i left manila and got on board the ship, st. joseph the worker, which was bound for iloilo. we traveled for 24 hours and here are some of the things we got to show for the time we spent on the boat...

light rays manila skyline
dancing porters clouds and islands
clockwise from top left: light rays straight from the sky, the manila skyline, clouds and islands, dancing porters

sundeck sundeck too
videoke cabinmates
clockwise from top left: sundeck exposure, another sundeck exposure, inside one of the business-class cabins, our shameless invasion of the videoke area

2. i attended a scientific congress
our main purpose for leaving metro manila and going to iloilo was to attend a scientific congress in central philippine university, jaro, iloilo city in order to share our outputs to the scientific community. at the back of our minds, however, the real purpose was to have fun and go to other places, hehehe. it was my first time to be in iloilo.

main hall labmates
gumamela butterfly
clockwise from top left: the main hall of the congress, labmates, a butterfly in iloilo city's butterfly garden, a yellow and orange gumamela

3. i set foot on guimaras for the first time
the congress ran for 3 days -- from october 26 to october 28. on october 29, saturday, instead of heading straight for iligan, i hied off to guimaras for an island-hopping adventure with 3 of my mindanaon friends.

boat group picture
baras caves
tiil sa mga laagan pawikan
clockwise from top left: the boat that took us from iloilo to jordan-guimaras, group picture - raymen beach resort, cave openings in one of the islands that we passed by during our island-hopping adventure, holding a 15-kg breathing pawikan in turtle island-guimaras, best feet forward, group picture - baras beach resort

4. i went around the island of negros
right after our trip to guimaras, we went back to iloilo city. we left iloilo immediately and took a ride on an ocean jet that took us to bacolod city. we stayed in bacolod for a night and on early sunday, we boarded a bus bound for dumaguete. the busride we got, however, took the long route -- it followed the coastal road instead of going through the road that cuts across the island. as a result, we passed by so many cities we otherwise wouldn't have passed by that day. by the time we reached dumaguete city, my back was aching from the 7+ hours of bus travel. despite that, i don't have any significant complaints. it was my first time to be in negros and i was having fun. in fact, when one of my bags fell off the bus and onto the side of the road somewhere between san carlos city and bais city, my friends and i laughed and laughed while the driver and the other passengers got irritated because of the delay. actually, it was the driver's fault for being such a daredevil -- he was driving so fast, we almost collided with another bus. during the motions of swerving, my bag, which we tied to one of the bus poles, got untied. it fell down the ladder near the bus pole and went off the bus through the open door. it was a quite heavy bag and it was funny to see it falling off the bus the way it did.

stop-over negros
from left to right: san carlos city stop-over, negros landscape - cogon grass among the sugarcanes

5. i found myself back on mindanao soil
i must have walked on dumaguete soil for only 15 minutes or less. after we got off the bus that almost took us around the entire coastline of negros (not to mention that it almost took us straight to heaven, hehehe), we got on board an ocean jet bound for dapitan. in less than two hours, we found ourselves walking out of the water craft and on to the port area of dapitan. after 10 months of being away, i was back on mindanao soil. yehoo!!!

scenic shot - dapitan

we left dapitan on a van that took us to ozamiz city. in ozamiz, we hailed a motorcab, which brought us to the port area and arrived there just in time for a barge's departure -- we were the last passengers to go on board.

i didn't mind that we didn't stay long enough in dapitan and in ozamiz. i've been to those places before and already saw most of their areas. i like dapitan but i was excited to be home...

6. i got home
october 30. sunday. at almost 7pm. after months and months of anticipating the day that i'd be home again, it finally came true and i was back in iligan! yessssssssss...

7. i went to tangub city
october 31. monday. right after lunch. i'd only been home for less than 24 hours and my parents already whisked me and my sisters off to tangub city, my father's hometown, to see our relatives there. i love traveling and so i was game for it, despite my aching back...

lechon lechon
boys extended family picture
clockwise from top left: lechon head, the lechon has been attacked!, extended family picture - that's only half of our number, cute boys - my cousins

8. i attended a videoke session
my family stayed in tangub city until november 2. just 3 hours after we arrived in iligan, we left our house again to see my youngest cousin, b-boy, whom i haven't seen nor held before as he was born just last june.

vk and b-boy a.k.a. the crazy predator and the helpless prey. souvenir of our first meeting.

on november 3, i had dinner with my friends, miggs and micmic (m&m!). later that night, the rose called me up to force me to attend the videoke session she organized within short notice for her friends from high school, which included moi (of course!). because we're good friends, i had no choice but to join the get-together at her house, which i haven't been to since 7 years ago (when i arrived at her place, i thought i was waiting at the wrong gate, hehehe). i did not regret seeing my high school classmates again. we enjoyed being there and we stayed 'til the wee hours -- singing, talking (shouting?), eating, drinking san mig light, and yes, gossiping. hehehe.

9. i went to bacolod, lanao del norte
i broke my internet hiatus after i got back from the videoke session. i did not return to blogging though; i merely checked my piled-up emails and uploaded some pictures to my bloated friendster account. i slept for a few hours and when i woke up, my parents whisked me off to bacolod, lanao del norte -- this time, to attend my lolo's birthday celebration and to see relatives from my mother's side. there, i had another go at punching the keys of a videoke machine and eating delicious lechon, papa-it, paklay, kaldereta, dinuguan, kinason, sinugbang isda, and bulad.

cousins lolo and lola
from left to right: cousins -- the incomplete set, my lola and lolo with one of their great grandkids

10. ack! i ran out of things to say
okay, this will do: november 5. saturday. i bought a ticket for the plane ride that will take me back to manila (gasp!) mid-this week. i have yet to see my best friend (whom i haven't seen for almost two years now) and i have yet to visit my old school. i'm not worried, i still have time.

i told you, i've been up to nothing much. ;-)
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