Sunday, January 26, 2014
Must Visit Places in Baguio
The year 2014 started off really awesometastic! I got a chance to finally go to one of the places in the Philippines that I've always wanted to go - Baguio (the Summer Capital of the Philippines).
It was through the Youth Empowerment for Stronger Communities (YES-C) Program Workshop on Using Social Media to Empower Communities held at the Consuelo Center for Leadership and Social Innovation, CFSPI Baguio City.
This photo collage pretty much sums up my Baguio experience - nice weather (a little too cold for me but hey it was cool!) and nice people!
I've got to meet and help mentor 71 aspiring youth leaders who attended the Youth Empowerment for Stronger Communities Program that was organized by the Child and Family Service Philippines, Inc in partnership with the Embassy of the United States of America - Manila.
Me speaking in front of the youth of Baguio reminding them of the importance of ABC when using social media - Always Be Checking
During their workshop, they've personally met the US Ambassador Philip Goldberg and got the privilege to ask him questions such as his favorite Filipino foods and even his message for the youth.
After the workshop, I've gotten a chance to explore some of the must-see places in Baguio like Burnham Park, Botanical Garden, Mines View Park, Wright Park and even stroll the streets of Session Road and noticed some of the things that I probably wouldn't have learned about Baguio if I didn't go there and see and experience for myself.
1. The fruits and vegetables are really so fresh and so affordable!
Baguio supplies huge amount of fresh vegetable and fruits that's being consumed in the Metro Manila. On our way to the session road, I see some fruits being sold like grapes at Php 90 / kilo (normal seedless grapes are being sold Php 180 / kilo).
The cleanliness of the streets were so noticeable too!
2. They have really breathtaking view!
Overlooking the Mines View Park - Appropriately names for its breathtaking view of mountain ranges and Baguio's "mineral bowl where gold,silver and other ores were once quarried.
3. You can buy happiness for Php 250 half an hour!
Okay maybe not 'happiness' but horseback riding for half an hour..which to me is almost the same.
4. They may have the coldest temperature in the city, but they sure do have some of the warmest people!
The youth which I taught on how to use social media responsibly were kind enough to show me around the city and I learned from them about the history of Baguio, about which places to go and not to go.
6. And this one too...
And probably many other breathtaking places and more (that I didn't get a chance to go on the little time I spent there), plus I've only been to the 'touristy' places and not in the those path less traveled so it's not fair to say Baguio is really pretty because I know there are so many other beautiful places in that city that I've never been! If you're in the Metro Manila, plan a trip to go to Baguio because it's just worth it.
It's definitely a different experience.
Would love to thank the CSFPI Family for the warm welcome, US Embassy - Manila (special thanks to Jay de Jesus and Eren Joy “Ej” Bautista) for allowing me to take part in such a wonderful program that truly inspires the youth to become their best selves and to realize their potentials and really empower them and of course, thank you to all the mentors who helped in facilitating during the event.
Saturday, August 3, 2013
I'm trying to get back to writing so I'm starting with a list. Lists aren't usually so detailed and even if they are, people actually usually skip most words and simply want to read between the lines. List post is something I like to read but don't remember - but here we go.
Once you communicate what you want, the world will eventually conspire to make them happen - of course, if you do something towards achieving it and not merely wishing.
I grew up not really knowing what I want except that I once always wanted to become a lawyer. I'm twenty four years old now and I know better than trying to learn the laws of men most people actually seem to bend. For the past few years, I've met a lot of people. Most of them left, moved, got lost and some others still leave a memory in somewhere in my mind or heart and from them I've come to know what I actually do not like and love. To all these people, I'm so grateful for the impact you've done in my life. Thus, my 30 bucket list before hitting 30.
At this stage I'm not entirely sure whether I would actually endeavour to make them happen. All I wanted to put them out there and perhaps I'll work my way towards them. People reading this list may believe I would actually do them, others may not. I've learned that bucket lists are like resolutions - people are so fond of thinking and collating them instead of focusing to actually doing them.
1. Fall in love and never be afraid of getting hurt.
2. Make out while scuba diving.
3. Cook a dish for a hungry stranger.
4. Make a wish at the Trevi Fountain
5. Plant a tree. Preferably baobabs.
6. Pay off the second house. (Currently in progress)
7. Visit the pyramids.
8. Watch the sun set.
9. Fire dance in some exotic island. Looking at you Palawan.
10. Get published in CNN.
11. Eat french fries in France.
12. Get lost in the service of others. Places without electricity.
13. Build a sand castle.
14. Wear pink boots on a winter.
15. Get a book published by 28.
16. Speak at TED.
17. Tell the story of The Little Prince to the adults.
18. Travel the whole Philippines in one month. No plans of arriving nor leaving.
19. Go to Dubai.
20. Study forensics.
21. Learn sign language.
22. Bake blueberry cheesecake.
23. Master a poem I could recite to a crying kid.
24. Live in a foreign country for a month. Preferably Middle East.
25. Let go.
26. Kiss during the New Year.
28. Eat lots of spicy foods without crying.
29. Publish my autobiography.
30. Live, not just exist.
Image Source: Dirty and Thirty
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Must-Visit Places in Singapore for Team Building
Are you planning to have a team building for your company? Below is a list of must-visit places that are perfect for bonding and team building. Depending on which activities you have in mind, these places allow you to have ample to space and sets of fun activities that you and your colleagues can share.
While Singapore may be small, it's blessed with several interesting historic and fun places to go on your leisure time and for team building activities. Below are just some of my recommended places.
1. Sentosa Island
2. Singapore Botanic Gardens
3. Singapore Zoo
4. MacRitchie Nature Trail
5. MegaZip Adventure Park
6. Adventure Cove Water Park
7. G-MAX Reverse Bungy
8. Bukit Timah Nature Reserve
10. Jurong Frog Farm
Do you have any other recommended places for team building that we've missed out? Share them with us through the comments below!
Friday, January 11, 2013
10 Things I'm Grateful for 2012
Another year has gone by and instead of making resolutions, I've developed a habit of being grateful instead. Last year, I've shared a round up of the things that I'm so grateful for the year 2011 and this year, I would like to thank God for the many things that I have received (without even asking for it).
1. Friends I've met when I moved here in Singapore. Moving to another country and meeting new challenges wouldn't have been easy and fun ride had it not been for the many friends who made it all worthwhile.
2. My job that has helped me work and meet with really talented and amazing people in the advertising industry.
3. Meet ups and events that have helped me better understand concepts and for the many collaboration that constantly inspire and challenge me.
4. Chocolates that keep me company when I have a deadline to meet.
5. Jelly shoes that keep me walking comfortably (especially with Singapore's weird climate)
6. Katherine Liew and Shailesh Iyer. You are both beyond awesome and would forever be thankful for both your support and trust.
7. Top Mind Mappers. You're the most talented, most innovative group of people I've met here in Singapore. Fellow community builders and bloggers who inspire me with your posts.
8. Longan, lychee, chicken rice. Yes, anything with rice.
9. Thankful to have traveled in Indonesia and Malaysia where the people have been extra nice and almost everything's double the size, half the price (compared to Singapore).
There are so many things that I'm so thankful for 2012 and I look forward to a much more exciting 2013.
Saturday, November 17, 2012
Why It's More FUN in the Philippines
Being in another country (aka Overseas Filipino Worker), I appreciate my beloved country even more. I appreciate just how sumptuous tuyo, daing, puto, dinuguan, dinengdeng, and many other Filipino delicacies. I miss the fiestas. I miss the lechon. I miss a lot of things. Most of all, I miss the cheerful attitude of my fellow Filipinos even if we're currently in some challenging situations.
Below is the newest AVP by the Department of Tourism. It shows just how colourful and fun our country is. Have fun watching and let me know in the comments below what do you miss about the Philippines!
Monday, October 15, 2012
Singapore Botanic Gardens
Singapore Botanic Gardens is one of the must-visit places in Singapore especially if you're a nature lover. It showcases many types of flowers especially orchids. It is the only botanic garden in the world that opens from 5 a.m. to 12 midnight every single day of the year, and does not charge an admission fee, except for the National Orchid Garden.
Vanda 'Miss Joaquim', also known as the Singapore Orchid and the Princess Aloha Orchid is a hybrid orchid cultivar that is Singapore's national flower.
Directions to Botanic Gardens
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Can't waiiiiit! Will be in Jakarta, Indonesia this October 12th to 14th :) Booked the ticket through Lion Air and I'm so excited. The ticket (round-trip) costed me S$127.00.
Will be going there with my colleague, Lydia and I can't wait to have a whole day of pampering and makan (eat, eat, eat).
Thursday, September 13, 2012
The U.S. Embassy in Manila is pleased to share with you a short video featuring the historic U.S. Ambassador’s Residence in Baguio City which was recently included in the U.S. Secretary of State’s Register of Culturally Significant Property.
Manila historian and cultural activist Carlos Celdran leads viewers on a virtual tour through the nooks and crannies of this historical house, including the famed “Yamashita Room.” This seven-minute video can be viewed by visiting the U.S. Embassy Manila’s official Youtube site.
The video underscores the important contribution of the U.S. Ambassador’s Residence to Philippine-American relations from time it was built for the U.S. High Commissioner during the Commonwealth period, to the Japanese occupation and surrender of General Tomoyuki Yamashita in 1945, and more recently, as a solid witness to the unwavering friendship between Americans and Filipinos.
The launch of this video coincides with a visit to Baguio City by Ambassador Harry K. Thomas Jr. during which he will honor the memory of those who died fighting for freedom in World War II in a wreath-laying ceremony on September 5 at the Veterans Park Memorial on Harrison Road.
Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Affordable Restaurants in Singapore
Over one week in Singapore working for Leo Burnett Worldwide and I am just starting to learn more about the 9th most expensive city to live in the world.
I pretty much stink at capturing the beauty of Singapore that I wanted to try and capture some of the simplest and perhaps the most beautiful moments and stories instead.
After work, I would always go straight to the apartment so I could have my dinner and get some rest. Whenever I have dinner, I couldn't help but compare the foods at the Maxwell Food Centre and those are the food kiosks here at Geylang Bahru. The food are way cheaper at the latter than the former. They're too cheap that the taste often become so frustrating that I am forced to grab some bread at the Bread Talk instead.
Today, I did my usual walk on the Kallang Bahru - Geylang Bahru market and passed by a few food stalls, not entirely looking at the menu as they do not only bore my eyes but somehow looking at some of the noodles upset my stomach. I'm not a very picky eater but perhaps I've gotten sick of a few dishes that I no longer look forward for dinner.
So today I went to this food kiosk where they sell western foods - the usual French Fries, burger, fried chicken. The old woman who was looking after the said stall approached me as to what I'd like to eat. Normally, such approach could be a little annoying. However, today, she strike me as helpful since I was indecisive as to what to eat. She never left me until I eventually decided on the Chicken Cuttlet Butter Rice at SGD $5.50.
The woman who served me didn't just take my order but also took the time to smile at me and really went the extra mile by suggesting where should I sit (since the area she referred me to is a bit colder). Both the old woman and the one who served me have that really warm approaches. Both smiled when they took and gave my order. Suddenly, I felt like I wanna go back there every time I will eat my dinner.
The Beatitude Western Food
When the food was served, Gawd, it was generous serving! I felt like the chicken was meant for two persons (I felt bad I wasn't able to finish it all because I was too stuffed!) with tomatoes, tomato ketchup, salad - all for just $5.50.
The small little acts of kindness usually go a long way! Don't forget to make that simple and little act of kindness today!
Chicken Cuttlet Butter Rice $5.50
Below are just some random shots of other restaurants and tea houses I've visited here in Singapore
Ananas Cafe - Near Aljunied MRT
Ananas Cafe - Affordable Foods in Singapore
Cuppy Love - Milk Teas, Shakes, etc
Mixed Duck Meat
Durian in Singapore
Friday, June 15, 2012
Philippines: a World-class Country
Philippines is without a doubt a worldclass country, with worldclass talents and scenic places. Below is an increasingly trending photo which shows places in the Philippines which at first glance could be mistaken for a country other than our very own. You be the judge. It really is more fun in the Philippines.
Davao is more than just its Durian. It's got great food and amazingly welcoming people. Below are just some of the must-visit places when you're in the city. You may click on each link for details.
1. Lachi's - Best Sans Rival
2. Sencha - Milk Tea
3. Pacific Spa - Great Spa Center. Try their Ventosa
4. Crocodile Park - Crocodile Sausages are must-try!
5. People's Park - Accessible and a great place to visit during the night.
6. Barbecue Boss - Affordable barbecue meals
7. Voyager - Very educational astronomical experience
Do you have any other must-visit places in Davao? Feel free to recommend them through the comments below!
Sunday, May 27, 2012
Damires Hills Tierra Verde in Janiuay Iloilo
Damires Hills Tierra Verde is an inland resort situated on the hills of Damires, Janiuay, Iloilo. Its pools, nipa hut cottages and rice fields are breathtaking. The place has become so much more beautiful and developed when compared to the last time that we were there (you can read about my first impressions of the place here).
Damires Hills in Janiuay: A Place to Relax and Kids-Friendly
Damires Hills Tierra Verde is a perfect place to relax, conduct team building activities (click the link for review of their team building facilities and programs) and now it's an exciting place for your kids to enjoy with its Kid's Adventure Park!
Aside from getting closer to the nature, there are new facilities that both kids and adults will definitely enjoy such as zipline, bungee trampoline and biking.
Damires Hills Bigger Pools
From the last time I visited Damires Hills, there are now 3 pools (the infinity-like pool, bigger pool which has fountains and the kiddie pool where it's got a mushroom shade).
New pool at Damires Hills, the fountains helps keep the water a bit colder when compared to the first infinity-like pool
Me with the kiddie pool at the background. It was so much fun watching both the kids and the adults enjoying this new improvement at Damires Hills
Kiddie Pool at Damires Hills
Damires Hills Tierra Verde Packages and Pricing
Below is a pricing for the entrance, swimming, zipline, mini zipline and the packages for their Kid's Adventure Park.
How Much Do the Food at Damires Hills Cost?
Below is a list of pricing for their food. Please note that prices may change without prior notice. Their daytime cottage costs Php 2,500 (Gumamela) and that's consumable so during our visit with my church friends, we had Sinigang na Hipon (Php 180), Grilled Boneless Bangus (Php 190), Grilled Chicken Pecho (Php 115) Soup and three 1.5 litres of Sprite for drinks. I suggest you order food as soon as you pay at the counter/receptionist so they could prepare your food right away to avoid waiting so much.
Damires Hills Kid's Adventure Park
Aside from being a great place to relax, enjoy swimming at the pool, Damires Hills is great for your kids to enjoy too in their Kid's Adventure Park where there's bungee trampoline (adults could enjoy it too) and rope course.
Entrance to the Kid's Adventure Park
Kid on the bungee trampoline. He's way braver than me and my friends. We screamed our hearts out during our ride to the bungee trampoline but this kid was just quite the whole time!
Rope course at the Kid's Adventure Park
Tire swings at the Kid's Adventure Park
How to Get to Damires Hills in Janiuay, Iloilo
Take Janiuay bound jeepneys at Central Iloilo Passenger Terminal located at Ungka, Jaro, Iloilo City. From the Janiuay Plaza, get a tricycle or motorcyle to take you to Damires Hills. Travel time from Iloilo City to Janiuay is approximately 45 minutes to an hour.
How to Contact Damires Hills in Janiuay Iloilo
Damires Hills Tierra Verde is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. every weekdays; Saturdays at 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sundays from 7 a.m. till 8 p.m. For reservations and questions, you can contact them through the following contact details:
Address: Brgy. Damires, Janiuay Iloilo
Contact Numbers: (033) 3968144 / (033) 531-6519
Mobile Number: 09176326901 / 09399060689
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday, May 3, 2012
Voyager Philippines - Astronomy and Space Exploration
In every adult there would always be that little kid that wants to explore the universe. We all went through the times when we enjoy our science class mainly because of those round object known as planets. So when we were in Davao City together with Davao Bloggers for the Generation Change Project, we stopped by the SM City Davao and so much to my excitement when we saw the Voyager.
I've seen them on the news the week before. They are the group of people whose mission is to give students a deeper understanding and appreciation of astronomy and space exploration. To allow them to experience educational entertainment that will maximize their learning potential. To motivate and inspire citizens and students through the latest innovations in astronomy programs and software developed by a group of Filipino professional and amateur astronomers.
Voyager Educational and Events Services is a company of credence and excellence that caters to all forms of special events. It specializes on educational services particularly ASTRONOMY-RELATED EVENTS.
Before we could get stubs/tickets to enter their makeshift dome-shaped tent, we were asked to login to our Facebook accounts and like their Facebook Page (visit their page and I reckon you'd LIKE them, they're awesome bunch!).
There were also booths where you could get a taste of being outside our universe as an astronaut and peek at various types of telescopes. That's just outside, wait till you're actually inside the dome-shaped tent.
Inside the dome-shaped tent (I really don't know what it's called but it looks pretty cool), you will be transported from the Earth to various planets in the galaxy. It was also explained why there's night and day and all those fun facts that reminds you of grade school years. The animation and transporting effects were pretty neat and for a moment in my stay in Davao City, I felt like a kid again thirsting for knowledge of the worlds beyond our own.
If you're in SM City Davao, be sure to visit them!
How to Contact Voyager Philippines
Location: Door #1, JKA Bldg., Tahimik Avenue, Bangkal, 8000 Davao City, Philippines
Phone: (082) 295 6755
Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Lachi's - The Best Sans Rival and Desserts in Davao
Right after eating crocodile sausages at Dundee Gourmet Cuisine in Crocodile Farm, me and other Davao Bloggers went to Lachi's. It wouldn't be Sans Rival and Desserts if it's not Lachi's.
Lachi's famous Sans Rival
When their famous Sans Rival was served, one can conclude that Lachi's Sans Rival definitely has no rival. Hands down.
Lachi's Blueberry Cheesecake
Renz Bulseco of The Geek Travels, Dulce Lada - the President of Davao Bloggers, Me, Flow of Ang sa Wari Ko and Berniemack Arelláno of Habagat Central while we were waiting for our orders :)
How to Contact Lachi's in Davao
Street Address: Door 1-H VAL Learning Village,
Ruby Street, Marfori Heights,
Contact Number: 822245552
Monday, April 30, 2012
Barbecue Boss: Affordable Barbecue and Unlimited Rice
For someone who likes inasal (barbecue) a lot, I could hardly believe that there's really a place where you could buy barbecue for only Php 6. Yet, there it was, just a few blocks away from Davao's People's Park stands the Barbecue Boss.
The place strictly prohibits its customers from smoking but they do serve light drinks. The ambiance is pretty much like that in Mang Inasal except that it's smaller, the lights are dimmer. They also have this weird procedure where they require their customers to sign a paper every time your order has been delivered. The waiters don't seem to be attentive too. I had to wave several times just to get my cola and unlike in Mang Inasal, they don't really keep tabs as to who needs more rice even if you've ordered unlimited rice.
P6 Only Barbecue Catch
Just like in any advertising, their P6-only barbecue is that you have to buy a minimum of 5 pieces which immediately requires you to pay P30, which I think is quite reasonable.
For P6 per stick don't expect too much on the taste because you really get what you paid for. The unlimited rice for P15 wasn't close to satisfying because each cup served is clearly limited unlike in Mang Inasal where each cup really is siksik.
Over-all, I paid a total of Php 45 for one meal (Php 30 for 5 pieces of pork barbecue and Php 15 for unlimited rice) which is pretty cheap.
Would I recommend it? If you want a totally satisfying meal, not really. However, if you're following a budget then Barbecue Boss isn't bad at all.