Thursday, September 15, 2016
After the Venetian Moments at Grand Venice Canal, the three of us headed to Divisoria. Aside from getting the stainless jewelries from my supplier, hubby went for something we can get for our kids, while Jef also went on his way to find the items he been looking for. We thought of getting a toy guitar from the guitars center if any, but unfortunately we found none. Nevertheless, we’re still able to buy something, wooden toys to be to sell online.
Landed at NAIA Terminal 3 at 11:45PM from Cagayan de Oro, the 3 of us went directly to booked dormitory in Quezon City. Still, thinking we’re to spend our whole day the following day.
The next day, with the trip to the beach cancelled, the three of us decided to spend our whole day in the Metro Manila. Jef wanted to shop at Divisoria, while Jessie and I were waiting for feedback as to where to get the auto parts in Banawe. Since, it’s too early to do both we decided to visit the newest picture perfect destination in Metro Manila.
Getting to Venice Grand Canal Mall, into McKinley Hills is pretty much easier, thanks to the detailed directions in the internet. As much as we wanted to take the easy ride by “taxi”, we opted to take the cheapest public transport, the MRT + the jeepney.
We strolled our way to the nearest MRT station, the Quezon Avenue Station after a quick breakfast at the Seven Eleven (easiest and cheapest place to find something clean and decent to eat). Way back, MRT is the best transport when you want to go places quickly, but this time around, we waited for 30 minutes before the lady guards allowed us to go inside, and waited another 10 minutes for the first train to arrive which unfortunately was fully loaded, we waited and waited and the area became crowdeswith so many commuters, good thing an empty train came was sent to our station, and all of us currently in the area were able to get in.
We disembarked at the Guadalupe Station and rode a jeepney enroute to AFP Housing. Not really sure we’re going to, I switched “on’ the GPS tracking our location at the same time looking for pokestop to gather pokeballs. J
The Venice Grand Canal Mall is easy to find, all you have to do is follow the alleys and read signs, 2 hours after our very long travel, we arrived at the entrance of the mall that’s due to open in 10 minutes (11AM). The sun was pretty harsh, but still we positioned ourselves anywhere possible, trying to get the best photographs. Though I haven’t been to Venice or in Macau, I believe this place is stunning just like the original.
There are gondolas too, but there were all parked under the bridge, I think the gondola rides are open at night, not really sure.
It was a good decision, to visit the place before heading for a cheap shopping spree in Divisoria, it felt like we’re in a romantic setting. I even posted this photo in my instagram, and some even thought that we actually went to the real place. Cool to daydream!
Lunch? Nah, the restaurants in the area are quite expensive and we don’t have the budget for an expensive food tripping. J
So if you are in the Metro, take time to visit the Venice Grand Canal in Taguig.
Who loves Folk Music? Though, I am not that musically inclined, but I love to hear some. I love to hear the folk songs of our native land that runs in our blood way back from the 19th century. Produced from ordinary to unique musical intruments that I have not known, including also the distinctive sounds from irish tin whistle. Folk songs are usually heard during small community gatherings and are passed down orally from one individual to another.
Monday, September 5, 2016
The time has finally come, that we have to fly to the Metro and enjoy the promo air fare that we have booked months earlier.
I contacted Bakasyonista a travel agency and booked for a special tour to Anawangin Cove in San Antonio, Zambales. We have a lot of beautiful beaches in Mindanao but we wanted to try and see for ourselves the known travel destination facing the South China Sea. With booking deposit paid + all the research I have done, gathering all information we needed to know, we’re basically all set. However, 5 days before the much awaited trip, the travel agency called us that Anawangin Cove is not fit to visit until the weekend, due to big waves in the area per coast guard advisory. Huh! Bad luck!
We have no choice but to look for another alternative and booked ourselves to the Fortune Island Day Tour in Nasugbu, Batangas. I did all the research as well as to how to get there, and we’re pretty much excited to see the Ancient looking Greek style structure on the island. But luck was really not on our side, because a day before our trip the travel agency contacted us again and told us that the island will be closed on that particular weekend due to bad weather again. What! Heartbroken!
The much awaited trips were really not meant to be. We decided to refund our initial payment, since the reason was due to bad weather and it was the agency that cancelled the trips. Bakasyonista was indeed very accommodating and wired the payment to my bank account a few days later. I do hope to be able to avail their services in the future. And this time I’ll make sure to schedule trips during summer, when the weather in the Philippines is very ideal for beach tripping.
Monday, June 13, 2016
One of the playhouses that I brought my kids to have a drum set for children to play pretend that they are drummer, or musician. It’s actually a great idea to engage the kids to musical instruments as early as possible. That way we can determine if the kid has an inclination to music.
|photo not mine|
One of the music instruments that I am eyeing to buy for my kids is a cocktail drum set. But since they are still kids, I’ll settle for a kiddie drum set for toddlers for now. Who knows in the future, they will become great drummers or musicians.
Saturday, May 7, 2016
The first smartphone that I had was an android. From then on, I consider myself as a loyal android user. I may have switched phones a couple of times, but have never considered shifting to other with different operating system. I just love android, the simplicity, the usability.
Now I am in search of a smartphone, a new smartphone that is different from what I have now. A smartphone that will make me appreciate an all-in one technology. Huawei Nexus 6p leads among the bunch of smartphones in the market today that I have searched on in terms of the following;
Iconic Hardware Design
Built with full metal uni-body using an anodized aluminium, thus improving wear resistance and prevents body color fading. Designed and molded with 3D curved glass and diamond chamfers, giving it an elegant and stylish feel.
Huawei Nexus 6p is equipped with Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 v2.1 processor for an innovative mobile experience. Imagine streaming a 4K Ultra HD video or downloading with a download speed of up to 450Mbps, wow that is truly something! This powerful technology is paired with Android 6.0 Marshmallow for fresher and faster-than-ever performance made to handle today’s tough mobile usage.
Longer Battery Life
Of course, with that power specification, it definitely needs a battery to compensate them all. Thus, Huawei Nexus 6p comes with 3450mAh battery, one of the largest today, for a long and great battery life. And here’s more, worry not, because when the battery went dead, it only takes 10 minutes of charging for you to be able to use it again, the benefit of fast charging capability brought by the USB Type C port.
Best Google Experience
I am a person that uses Google a lot. In fact, I simply can’t live without it. Knowing how Huawei Nexus 6p teamed up with Google, I think I found the best mobile phone I ever wanted. Google Search for research, YouTube for video streaming, Google Play to download children’s apps for the kids, Google Maps to take me to places I’ve never been, and of course Gmail to check my personal and work related emails anytime, anywhere.
The best feature for me is the powerful camera that can capture more light. Most of the android mobiles that I have tried really suck when it comes to the camera capture during low-light. It usually gives dark and grainy results, just disappointing. But with Nexus 6p, it step up to 1/2.3-inch 12.3MP image sensor (rear camera) resulting to 1.55micron pixels, thus, allowing it to collect more lights to produce superb picture quality.
Wow, with that camera, I have no worry everytime I go on personal or business travels. I only have to take this 178g gadget with me, snaps and memories will definitely be recorded.
Monday, April 11, 2016
The last time I was in Camiguin, was like 10 years ago. I already forgot how this beautiful island looks like, until last week when we had our division’s in-house seminar at Villa Paraiso Apartelle.
It was a two-day seminar, that we squeezed everything in one day, stayed until 11PM, just to finish all scheduled activities and topics to be discussed, to make room for an island tour the following day and visit the Eight (8) Must See Spots in Camiguin.
1. White Island
The most awaited day for all of us, after our hard work the previous day, started at 5:45AM. We went directly to Barangay Yumbing, where the boats are located to take us to White Island or the White Sand Bar. Since, we are a group of 16, we were divided into 3 sub-groups. The small motor boat with katig that will take us to the island can only carry maximum of 6 passengers. Juggling which boat to take, I decided to go with the youngsters. Yep, it is good to be surrounded by younger generations once in a while, I felt younger too.
Ten minutes later, we’re on the island. As expected, tourists were already everywhere, because the best time to explore and enjoy White Island is between 6AM – 8AM, when the heat of the sun is still bearable. Yep! Lucky enough to catch the sunrise and have a photographed taken.
There were also a few vendors on the island. Some sell, coffee, sweet potato or egg for breakfast, while some also are selling freshly caught sea urchins. If you haven’t tried sea urchins, then you must. Best eaten with vinegar, but you’ll appreciate the real taste behind when eaten raw.
The remaining one and a half hour was spent swimming in the clear water. With the water level only to my waist on the far side of the island, it was indeed perfect for swimming even for a non-swimmer like me. We swam and posed non-stop searching for that perfect pose using the GoPro action camera of one of our colleagues, yet failed. Haha!
2. Walk Way to the Old Volcano
Two days more, Camiguin Island will be jam-packed with devotees and tourists for the Panaad 2016. Along the slope of the Old Volcano also known as Mt. Vulcan are the life-size statues depicting the 14 Stations of the Cross,the sacred destination during the holy week.
As of this time, the foot of the Walk Way was still calm, with few busy locals, preparing for the much awaited yearly event. Souvenir items were everywhere.
We decided to just take some snaps on the spot above, then, went for a refreshing fresh buko juice. Thanks boss for the free treat!
Next stop is the
3. Sunken Cemetery
Approximately 5 minutes ride from the Walk Way to the Old Volcano, is the Sunken Cemetery. The devastating eruption of Mt Vulcan in 1871, submerged the coastal area of Catarman (now known as Barangay Bonbon) undersea including the old cemetery. It can be seen, though during low tide, but after a series of volcanic eruptions in 1948 to 1953, the Sunken Cemetery was pushed down further, it is now said to be 20 feet below the surface. As a reminder of the destructive past, a giant cross was built in 1982 marking the spot of the Sunken Cemetery.
Summer + El Niño, the heat of the sun was already too much, thus, we decided only for some photo ops from the viewing area without bothering getting across to the giant cross.
4. The Guiob Church Ruins
Also located at Barangay Bonbon in Catarman and another remnant of the destructive eruption of Mt. Vulcan in 1871 is the Guiob Church Ruins or better known as the Old Church Ruins. Built in the 16th Century, these remains (Church, Bell Tower and a Convent) are some of the oldest structures in Camiguin.
The old ruins are most of the time covered with moss, refreshing greenery, but because of the El Niño phenomenon, the place was brown and dry. But still cannot hide the fact that these structures are worth seeing and photographing.
Oh wait, beside the remains of the convent is the towering century-old tree. This tree really did stand the test of time, after all the catastrophe it has been through.
Because of its height one cannot take a photo of the whole tree in on snap. Thanks to technology today, equipping our smartphones with panoramic mode, look, we were mesmerized how the branches and leaves sway from afar.
5. Sto. Niño Cold Spring
It was already midday, we were all very hungry. Carrying with us our packed lunch, we headed to Sto. Niño Cold Spring for a two-hour lunch break and cold swim.
Camiguin is blessed with springs, whether cold or hot, the island has it. The Sto. Niño Cold Spring is a favorite picnic destination of locals. Tourists are also welcome to take a dip in this 20°C crystal clear water coming from the ground.
Lunch done, it’s time to go to the inland...
6. Tuasan Falls
Katibawasan Falls was originally in our itinerary but since the group agreed to take it out off the list. The waterfalls might not be that great this season because of El Niño so we decided to go to Tuasan Falls instead.
About 9.8 kilometers from Sto. Nino Cold Spring, Tuasan Falls is very much accessible because of the ongoing road construction. Only 30 meters from the dropped off point which previously took about 30 minute walk to reach the waterfalls.
Though the drop is not that high, Tuasan Falls is a beauty that Camiguin can also offer, surrounded by rocks and greeneries, definitely a must see. Oh, wait until you dip in the clear cool water, it was totally refreshing.
7. Soda Water Swimming Pool
Also located in Catarman, an extraordinary spring water that can only be found in Camiguin, the Bura Soda Spring. Developed with large pools, the Soda Swimming pool is inviting and refreshing, I was tempted to splash in the water, but hesitated, instead, I satisfied my curiosity by tasting, rather drinking the fresh soda water at the side.
The taste, well, it was different of course compared to fresh spring water, it somewhat tasted like a diluted Sprite or a flavored mineral water. According to the locals, the water used to taste sweet like those well-known soda drinks, but the soda source underneath the pool has degraded over time.
8. Ardent Hot Spring
Because more than half of our team are already of age, the hot spring pool was saved as our last stop for the day. They wanted to take a dip in the hot spring water at the foot of Mount Hibok Hibok. Not much have developed in The Ardent Hot Spring since the last time I’ve been here, though, there are few cascading pools (I think) than before, and each pool has different temperature, tourist has the option to choose which one they like.
Just like before, Ardent Spring maintained the laid back atmosphere, with trees and greeneries in the area, soothing and relaxing.
Overall Camiguin is one of the best places when you want to get away from the busy city life. There are a lot of memories to remember in our 2-day stay in this beautiful island, though there were issues during the seminar proper, but were peacefully resolved, after all we are all professionals and no stored grudges, separating work related issues to personal life.
Camiguin has gained popularity not only to local tourists but as well as foreigners, in fact, there were a group of Canadian missionaries on the same boat we’ve boarded to the island.
Camiguin has so much to offer, the 8 listed above were the only places our group managed to visit in just a very short time. Although it was short, yet overflowing with photographs and memories.