Short Poetries 115 – War’s In Love

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War is a horror, they say; war is suffering, they say. 

For it is war who brings pain and sorrow. 

But what if it doesn’t? For war is love, just misguided. 

I blossomed during the war, I heightened on it’s peak. 

Do you remember that day the cannons blew? We bumped into each other. 

How about the night that the bombings started? We shared my bed together. 

As the war goes strong, so does our love. 

Thus, how dare they blame it into the war!  

I lost a father, a child and a brother; yet, in the war I found you. 

The memories we made as lives fall, are rays of light to my lonely soul. 

Alas! They come to make peace, so I must lay you into your grave. 

I long for war to come once more, for you, my love, my hands again will hold. 

Photo grabbed from: http://the-lemon-watch.deviantart.com/art/My-War-Love-Grenade-307916383

Short Poetries 114 – A Tribulation for Romantics

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This is for me, for all I have is my own. 

The days of sorrows are long gone; neither are the memories I sought to cherish, forever. 

Behold, not the mightiness or the boldness of my heart, but the fragility of it’s pieces, torn apart. 

Let the world know, that from now onwards, I shall keep you inside, no longer. 

I rose up in the spring and danced with the cherry blossoms. 

I walked in the summer until the first of the autumn leaf falls. 

I dragged my feet in the depths of the icy winter; only to find your heart binded with void. 

I shall see you, speak of your norm, no more. 

My heart’s demise is to myself I blame, but I despise the pain it yearns to keep. 

It’s odd the way it channels happiness from the treacherous path it chooses. 

If earlier did I know, but it’s too late to undo what has been the outcome of this affair. 

Clear my path, deprive myself of your ambiguous love; only then, what I seek will be found. 

Real Post 147 – Tuos, More Than Just A Kinaray-a Movie

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It’s our second year attending the Cinemalaya and as always, it was a blast! If last year we came for the director, now, for the movie itself.

It’s no wonder why we chose to see it coz it’s a film in Kinaray-a language and we are proud Karay-as, and we are just curious of the outcome. To be honest, we’ve never seen a full-length movie before written and spoken in Kinaray-a so we plan for if the moment we saw it announced online last year.

Due to unforeseen circumstances, we weren’t able to buy tickets in advance, and so, we went to Greenbelt 1 in Makati instead of the CCP Complex in Manila, where the meet-and-greet with the casts and crew, and full ceremony is being held each year, hoping that we can get seats before it last.

As of 12:30 in the afternoon, we hopped on the bus going to Paseo De Roxas and headed directly to the ticketing post for the movie. Alas! all the seats are in red, which means they are all taken, or so we thought. My cousin, Mimi, even asked me if am gonna cry because we are too late. Well, am a persistent human being and does not necessary give up so I confirmed with the cashier if they are all indeed taken. She nodded, which made me upset…again, but then I noticed she taps two seats on the screen and two tickets were generated. So, voila! We got in!

The movie ran for at least an hour and a half (please correct me if am wrong) and I can say that Tuos is more than just a Kinaray-a movie. You may encounter a bit of dizziness for some parts of the opening scenes due to constant movements of the camera but if you know how to speak Kinaray-a or at least understands the language, you will find it comedic. If you are none of those two, worry not, for they have English subtitles for everyone to cope up.

At first, we were laughing because of the accents the casts have when they speak in Kinaray-a. You can easily identify which one is a native speaker and which ones are not (and which ones are Ilonggos and which ones are Tagalogs). One thing that stunned me though is the fluency of Ms. Nora Aunor’s tongue in speaking Kinaray-a. If someone doesn’t know her ( which is highly doubtful considering she is a Superstar), they’ll probably say she is a native Karay-a. Indeed she is a versatile actress!

Think no less of Barbie Forteza as the granddaughter of Ms. Nora Aunor in the movie. Whenever I felt about laughing at their accents, I just looked into her face whenever she acts out a scene, giving her a thumbs up is the least that I can say for her performance. Also, kudos to Ms. Flor Salanga for a spectacular portrayal of her character with the least lines delivered.

Now, why did I say it’s not just a Kinaray-a movie? Coz it isn’t. It is a colorful play with all the feels in it; Drama, Comedy, Thriller and Romance in one seating, plus a bonus Animation and Musical. #SpoilerAlert

The plot is so simple that they play  all the angles of the movie right. On the other hand, I sincerely apologize for laughing at the accents they made but if I did not understand Kinaray-a, the enjoyment would be a threefold. Minus the technicalities considering it’s an Indie Film, Tuos is a must see and a must be shown movie.

I salute all the casts and crew for making this movie. I am looking forward for its DVD release so that I can show it to my family and friends in Antique.

‘Til next year, Cinemalaya!

Out of Town presents… Baguio City, A Heat Escape

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Dry season in Metro Manila is hellish as ever. If you want to escape a hot limbo, where do you wanna go, it’ll be Baguio!

Named as The Summer Capital of the Philippines, Baguio City is cold as your ex-lover’s heart. This is one of the reasons why my cousin Mimi and I decided to spend our time there last weekend.

As discussed, we headed to Cubao Bus Terminal to catch the earliest ride to the City of Pines. Alas! We are not the only ones who want to get out of Manila that night, but we are losing any hopes. It turned out, Victory Liner is not the only bus headed towards the Cordilleras. We got seats from the North Genesis bus just few blocks away from Victory Liner and rode our way at 9:30 on a Friday night.

At around 4 in the morning of the next day, we arrived in Baguio. As a first timer in this place, I can confirm that the chills are real. It is really cold in there especially during the wee hours of the night ’til dawn. Our knees are trembling and our jaws are clicking because of the severe cold. ‘Brrr’ is indeed a word in there.

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An early morning stroll in Burnham Park. Brrr!!!

Since the place where we are going to stay opens at 8:30 AM, we decided to take an early breakfast (and very late dinner for last night) at one of the fast food chains in there. It is true that establishments in there operate without an air conditioning unit, as well as their cabs, which by the way can be praised for having honest and approachable cab drivers so far.

After settling into a transient house owned by Ate Garet – thanks to my colleague and friend Rizza who happens to be a girlfriend of her sister’s step-son, we got a room for 300 pesos instead of 350 and we were allowed to check in early and check out late – we headed to Lourdes Grotto to say a little prayer and lay a flower on the statue of Mother Mary. The grotto is situated on the top of the hill so we need to take 252 steps before reaching it. It was really worth it since you will see a panoramic view of establishments in variety of colors. It seems like you are looking at a magazine cover or the Island of Santorini in Greece.

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We’ll say a little prayer for you! :-) 

Kapilya nina Jesus at Maria

A small chapel located at the Lourdes Grotto for those who wanted to say their prayers in the shadows. 

At 11:00 AM, we decided to look for a place to calm our starving bellies. I saw a post about the 50’s Diner in the internet a day before out trip so we decided to check it out. The least I can say is, it was an experience. Maybe it’s just me but you can check them out for yourselves.🙂

We were planning to visit the Mines View Park next; however, due to some weather disturbances and an agitation I felt from my stomach (as it is still adjusting to the cold temperature of the place), we headed back home to rest.

We went down to the Burnham Park at around 5 in the afternoon and stroll beside the lake, then we saw a cycling range. Without further ado, we rented 2 bicycles at 40 pesos per hour each and roam around the park. It was my first time riding a bicycle again since way back high school years. It was really, really refreshing!

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It is a cold yet great day strolling in Burnham Park. What a lovely afternoon indeed!

We looked for a place to eat dinner at 7:00 PM because this is one of the things we like to do while traveling. Unfortunately, the rain poured down again so we ran up to SM Baguio and get inside a Chinese fast food chain and vent out our disappointments on their food. It’s a good thing we were hungry, or else…

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The Baguio Skyline.

Since it was not really a good time to unwind while the rain is heavily dropping it’s tears, we went home and prepared ourselves for the next trip in the morning, the Strawberry Farm!

We woke up at 5 in the morning, took a bath (the water is sooo cold and since there is no heater on the bathroom, we soaked on a sudden ice bucket challenge!) and went our way to La Trinidad. It was an amazing view of a farm. They got not only strawberries but broccoli, lettuces, cabbages and many other fruits and vegetables that grow in cold weathers. The land is muddy due to a heavy rain last night and my cousin enjoyed it in barefoot while strawberry-picking. The smell of the farm and the mud feels like home in the province.

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It’s strawberry-picking time!

Strawberry Farm

What a magnificent farm you are!

We spent a thousand pesos buying souvenirs and pasalubongs in there while thinking of our last stop before going home since it’s nearly noon and we are about to go back in Manila in 6 hours. Then, Mines View Park made it to the top list.

Despite of a heavy traffic, we reached Mines View Park after 30 minutes. The pungent smell of horses and fresh air is what makes our ride to the park distinctive from the rest of the tours we had since the day before. The place was said to be the highest peak of Baguio City but we did not appreciate it very much due to a high volume of people wanting to take a good picture and a quality pose of the mountains and the valleys below it. Again, we looked for some souvenirs and headed our way back to the house.

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Last stop, the soaring high place at Mines View Park.

I cannot say that my trip there is one of a kind, but it is certainly an experience. It was also my first time visiting Baguio so I will clearly be back in that place to peak on the rest of the beautiful spots in there. It is true that Baguio has a lot to offer for your eyes to feast on, but what many people don’t know is that observing the ways people live in there is astounding.

If I were to choose, I will live there not because of the great places they offer, but of how they give importance to people, may you be their neighbor or a stranger across the street, and of course, because of its great, cold and chilling climate. Definitely going to come back there someday.

 

 

Out of Town presents…Pray. Eat. Appreciate. – Tagaytay City

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It would have been another typical rest day passing by until I come up with an idea,a night before yesterday, I should have a great weekend ahead of me. And so, I decided to visit Tagaytay. It is just a 2-hour drive from the Metro but for some reason, I haven’t think about it over the years. Yeah, it was my first time going there, but, it was worth going to this place.

I packed my things at 5 in the morning and rode my way to Coastal Mall Bus Terminal. I began my journey at 6 and reached my destination 2 hours later. Did I forgot to mention, I decided  to go alone? Yup. I usually asks a friend to accompany me for trips outside Metro Manila, but this time, I prefer a DIY situation. I just wanted to see how I will be doing in traveling by myself in places I have never been before.

First stop, the Chapel of Tierra De Maria. I am not really that religious but it is a peaceful feeling if I visit churches or holy places first before anything else. I got a calm mind and spirit upon entering this chapel. It was a serene moment for me, and I loved it.

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Our Lady of Manaoag – Tierra De Maria in Tagaytay City.

This is a 3-storey chapel with a roof deck where you can see the Taal Lake and Taal Volcano from a distance. The view was mesmerizing. I felt like a child seeing wonders of the world for the first time again! I usually see this picturesque spot in books and the internet, but looking at it in close proximity, whoa, it was fantastic!

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The ground floor entrance of the chapel.

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Inside the chapel. You will not know what solemnity means until you step inside this place.

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I am always fascinated of pictures hanging on the wall.

I offered a small prayer and slipped a ‘prayer note’ on one of the wishing boxes then quietly exited my way out.

Next stop was supposed  to be the Museo Orlina, but since it was 5 minutes before 9AM, I decided to look for something to eat, also, the museum opens at 10 and I got nothing to do at that time. As per my itinerary, the great place to dine is in Mer-Ben Tapsilogan sa Tagaytay. This is not your usual tapsilogan, not because the food they serve is unique or varies from our regular tapsi food stores, but because of how courteous they are and very approachable. One of the things that could give you amazing experience in places like this, is how they treat their customers. I would prefer eating in a karinderia with a smiling face tindera than in a 5-star hotel with a crew having judgemental looks. I need to have my happy place when I eat and I am so glad I went there.

One important thing though, make sure that you have knowledge of their public transportation or you will end up paying 150 pesos tricycle fare for a 15 pesos jeepney fare.😦

After a 2-hour bountiful meal, I went to the museum. Museo Orlina is a vacation house turned into a private museum by his owner, the internationally acclaimed Ramon Orlina, pioneer and foremost practitioner ofglass sculpture in the country. For a hundred pesos entrance fee, you will be given a video presentation on how it all started and a DIY tour of a 4-storey building with a basement. I had a great time walking around the house and going up and down the stairs, as I do not want to use their elevator for some reason. Below are some of the sculptures displayed on the gallery, mostly are made of glass and stones, others are metals and metal strands:

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Blueshirt Carvings. The latest collection added into the gallery. Recommended for a closer and personal look for a greater fascination!

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Optical Illusion Sofa.

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My favorite, the virtual kinetic rolling sculptures.

Since this was my last stop for the day, I decided to look for souvenir stores for some things to bring at home. I bought a mug with Taal Lake printed around it, a small ‘R’ key chain and 20 pieces of espasol ( a native delicacy that can be found, pretty much everywhere in the Philippines).

As I rode back to Manila, I started to reflect on the things that happened there, and I learn some very important things in traveling alone.

  • I can do it and I should do it again!
  • People are approachable as long as you approach them properly and with respect.
  • If you are stranger, be clever, or you will end up spending more than your expected expenses.
  • If you visit a place, stay for a while and enjoy the moment.
  • Lastly, have fun!

And so, I will be going on my next solo trip in I-do-not-know-yet place. So peeps, worry less, travel more.

 

Real Post 146 – Labor Day: A Holiday Worth Celebrating

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It’s the first of May, and we all know what this day is all about. It’s Labor Day everyone!

I know we are all accustomed to seeing people gathering in one place staging protests, hearing and seeing news about groups participating in rallies, whether to impeach government officials, complain about abuse on rights, unfair justice, inequality, unlawful system schemes or ranting about changes in all forms. These are some common practices we are doing and witnessing every May 1st; however, today, I just wanted to share good vibes and positive thinking, most of all, to give thanks.

– to the tricycle drivers who drive me to work every night, thank you. I knew how hellish traffic in the Metro is, but you still got your patience. I understand how painful it is to ride in a big bike for the entire day, raining or not, flooding or not, but you still got your hypes.

– to the security guards who greet me with a smile and open the door as I enter our office, keep up the good job. I know working for 12 hours a day is exhausting, not to mention the stamina and vigor you all need to keep in order to stay alert and awake, but you still manage to do so.

– to my boss and his bosses who always put their game faces and are always up to challenges, great work Sir’s. We are all looking up to you and we commit ourselves to working alongside with you for the betterment of our company.

– to my colleagues, let’s hang in there guys. We will all make it. We choose this job because we believe in it, plus it surely pays the bills. We are a team and we got each other’s backs. Thank you for making our workplace a one big happy family-like environment.

– to our workstation, office and bathroom cleaners, thank you for making sure our building is dust and pest-free, and for refilling the water dispensers every half an hour.

– to our electricians, thank for for keeping our lights on and giving our fragile air conditioning unit a proper care it needs. And for making sure we will not be electrocuted.

– to our baristas and concessionaires, an awesome job for serving us variety or delicious meals. Fortunately they are not expensive, and it exhibits great quality and an awesome kick in the stomach.

– to our office nurses, praises for an awesome job. Always keep your cool.

– to the taho and mani vendors outside our building, I salute you po. No matter how big or small we make out of it, as long as they are lawfully and morally right, it will never go wrong.

– to the service crew of the fast food chains and convenience stores I often visit for some yummy delights, proud of you guys. I may not know the demands of your jobs, but I can always see you put a smile in the name of a quality customer service.

– to the market vendors who calls me suki every time I buy something from them, you are all awesome. I may not know your stories, but I understand your sacrifices to earn an honest living.

– most of all, to myself, I am so proud of you. Just hang in there buddy. Always remember that work is a piece of your life’s puzzle. It’s a nature’s way to balance your life. A simple, and sometimes (well, most of the time) a firm reminder that if we want something, we need to earn our way in order to achieve it.

You might realize by now that I just describe to you my daily work routine, but I had fun doing it. I know there are a lot of people from all walks of life out there and I cannot thank all of them. But hey, let’s still give them a thanks, and by that, I mean each other. Let’s give each other a pat in the back and tell them we make a good job.

This might not be the most sought-after holiday, but this is surely is worth celebrating! After all, we are laborers.

Happy Labor Day everyone!!!

Image taken from: http://philnews.ph/2013/04/25/may-1-2013-labor-day-a-regular-philippine-holiday/labor-day/

Real Post 145 -Moving Out: A DIY Life

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What does moving out means to you? Is it about the feeling of enjoying your own freedom or wanting to experience the sense of responsibility to all of your actions?

How does it feels to live at your own house, apartment or even a shared room and paying the rental, not to mention the monthly water and electricity bills?

I don’t know about you, but it feels great! It’s a thrilling experience to be honest. In the Philippines where most adults choose to live with their own parents or relatives, living on your own is kind of amazing move. As for me, this will teach me a lot of lessons as I go along in the journey of life. I am hoping that this will give me sense of responsibility, accountability and security, and most of all, freedom.

Moving out is one of the things I can consider as a major decision I have made. Surely, I have lived away from my parents since college and stayed in a boarding house with my classmates for a couple of years. I also had a chance to stay with my relatives for a couple of months to a few years when I started to work, but having my own place is a lot different. It makes me feel matured and more adult, if that is the exact word for it. Somehow, it makes myself proud. I could say that I brought my life to the next level of awesomeness.

Now, let’s get down to the specifics. Living on your own is exciting, but it certainly is head-breaking and costly. It needs to be planned and be taken with all seriousness. Doing it in a rush, as to my case, can cost you double. It will also make your wallet and your savings account bleed the hell out. Just to let you all know, this is my first time doing a full-time moving out and we got no things to use in order to start a house; hence, we need to find and buy them. I moved with my younger brother, by the way. We started for those we need the most, kitchen wares and a bedroom. I love to cook, eat and sleep so don’t judge me. The rest just follows in an orderly manner that we created. Then voila! We are officially moving out to our new apartment.

That was the easy part.  The difficult phase was surviving our daily necessities, which mostly consists of food – Breakfast, Lunch and Supper. The lunch part is a DIY situation since he works in the morning and I am on a night shift, so we are making everyday decisions on what to eat for the rest of the day. It is a challenging yet educational experience since I now know the prices of rice, fish, meats, spices, fruits and vegetables in the market. I learn where is the nearest laundry shop, as well as the gas and water refilling station. I enjoy making a grocery list twice a month for our supplies, from a bath soap up to what is the perfect ingredient in making chicken adobo. It’s the ready to cook mix if you ask me, no need to balance the taste and saves you a lot of time looking for other exotic spices. Most of all, it is always a good thing to put your mother on a speed dial with an unlimited call plan.

It’s only been a week since we moved out and we are still on the adjustment period, but it’s been fun. I am still savoring the moment. It feels like my world has opened to wider possibilities of doing things that I love. I know that I have a ton of things to learn about living by myself and I am ready for it. There is always a start for everything. And for me, moving out means a new beginning. A new step to the unknown and uncharted land. A new hope for good things to happen. A redo, a start over for everything.

Thanks to Mimi for all the help, practical and thrifty tips in living a DIY life.