Baler Bound

Might be a little too late to post about my Baler trips but oh well… I’ll still write about it!

Thanks to my friend Cha, I discovered this place called Baler. It’s a six-hour-bus ride away from Manila. Just enough to catch some snooze and to recharge your energy if you’re leaving Manila around 1AM. I highly recommend for you to ride the semi-deluxe buses of Joybus! Not as expensive as their deluxe buses but they are as comfortable (no stopovers, toilet on the bus, free blanket, water and biscuits, lol). If you’re going there around the peak season, better reserve online for your bus ride.

My first trip to Baler was around September last year and we just stayed there for two days. Cha was kind enough to tour me around the touristy spots in Baler even though she already visited those places. My favorite is Sabang beach where I was able to have surf lessons. LOL! Since I’m too lampa, I wasn’t able to stand on the surfboard. For my first time there, I fell in love. I fell in love with the people, the stories, and the food (of course). Cha is a frequent visitor already of Baler, thus, she already made a lot of friends there. Their stories of how they end up there were amazing! It’s the wanderer and romantic in me, I guess. From bustling cities and busy 8 to 5 jobs, they decided to leave everything and start over in Baler. You can say that Baler is a place for the weary. It’s also a place to dream new dreams and make them happen.

Second trip happened in Novermber. We went there to celebrate Cha’s birthday. First activity was trekking to reach a secret waterfalls (only locals know the place). That was fun though, even if I’m not that into trekking. Haha! One of the highlights of this trip was our trip to Dicasalarin Cove. That place was surreal. It was beyond beautiful. You need to experience it to truly appreciate it. The beach, the lighthouse, the cave, and the artist village were soooooo beautiful. It’s a place that can inspire your soul. I highly recommend this place even though transpo plus entrace fee are a bit costly. Our supposedly three days stay in Baler became five days. We always don’t want to leave!

Now… let’s talk about food! Baler will not disappoint. From sweet to savory cravings, Baler got you covered. If you’re tipid na tipid, there are the rolling stores near the plaza to satisfy your hunger. For sweets, go and indulge on the different breads, cakes, and cupcakes at Dialyn’s Bakery. Don’t forget to partner them with their 20 pesos Twining’s tea (nakakaiyak sa mura). If you looooove food (like we do), eat your lunch and dinner at The Good Food. Their food is to die for!!! There’s nothing like them in Manila and their prices are soooooo affordable.

If you’re looking for new places to visit, Baler is a must. I love how the big waves are my lullaby at night. I love the stories of people there. I love how chill the vibe is there. I love how nice the people there. I love the memories I made there. I simply love it there.

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Best place to stay: Charlie Does Inn

Best food: The Good Food

Must Do: Surf Lesson

Must Visit: Dicasalarin Cove

Must pack: Sunblock

Must leave behind before you go here: Your worries

Must take away from Baler: Happy memories

P.S. All photos are taken by me πŸ™‚

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Strolling in Singapore

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Say hello to Singapore dear readers! I recently went there with my family and it was fun. I would definitely go back there!

Let’s talk about the weather first. I guess we were still lucky even though it was rainy for two days there. It isn’t really that bad to stroll in Singapore on a rainy day. The streets are clean, so you don’t have to worry about floating garbages. It doesn’t flood also. Lastly, most of there walk way or paths are indoors or it has a roof. Although, even if it was already raining it was still hot (but not as humid as Hong Kong).

The first thing we did was to eat at the airport while waiting for my cousin to fetch us. So we ate at McDonald’s and we all ordered McSpicy. I am one for spicy food but McSpicy in Singapore was on another level! It burns….

First stop for all the first timers in Singapore is Sentosa island, you can do a lot of activities there which is suitable for all ages. Plus, Resort’s World Singapore and Universal Studios Singapore are also located there.

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That’s me riding an old bike in Sentosa! There are so many things to see and do in Sentosa like there is the biggest oceanarium, going up inside their own Merlion, watching shows, and a lot more! In the Resort’s World side they do offer high end boutiques and good eating places like Hard Rock Cafe and Din Tai Fung. It is really one of the places in Singapore that tourist must go to.

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Going to Sentosa we opted to ride their cable car instead of riding a train. This picture is the rules that you will be able to read there! My favorite is the first one!

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My cousin, plus all of Singapore, said that you have not been to Singapore until you have gone to see the Merlion! The Merlion is the symbol of Singapore. You should really go there for, aside the quintessential Merlion, you would also see buildings of different companies on one side and on the side of the water you would see buildings of superior architectural design plus Singapore’s own observation wheel (which, sadly, we weren’t able to ride).

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The following day we went back to Sentosa to experience Universal Studios! The kid inside me was super duper uber happy!!!Β  It was a rainy day but nonetheless I enjoyed it a lot! I also think that the rain helped us to maximize Universal Studios. I expected a very very large crowd because it was the weekend but lo and behold there were not so many people. And because of that I felt like I had a quick pass or something for the lines are so short or even nonexistent! The rain also didn’t hampered us to ride the rides for most of the rides there were indoors. Since it is a theme park their streets are well… themed. My two favorites are Sci-fi City where there are the rides called Galactica and Transformers and the other one I loved was the New York side which is full of Sesame St. characters and stuff plus I so love the architecture. The down side of a rainy day there was that the Parade of Stars was cancelled but fortunately for us the rain stopped during the night that we were able to watch their fireworks display!

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That’s a picture of the Galactica, it is actually two rides. I love the blue one more than the red one. For the blue one your feet dangle in the air while your world turns upside down and all around! I love it so much!!! The thrill and the chill are the best!

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For our last day in Singapore we went to Orchard Road and Chinatown to do some shopping. Of course, if you are one to give gifts to your love ones when you come back from a vacation, then for Singapore, Chinatown is your safest bet! They have ref magnets, keychains, shirts, and food. Don’t anchor your happiness with how much you were able to buy in Chinatown but anchor it with the richness of the culture that you would see there. Singapore is expensive, haha. On a more positive note, Singapore is tax free especially for tourists and that’s why I was able to get a new pair from my favorite store which is Charles and Keith.

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There you go dear readers! Enjoy life and explore the word. There are so many things to see outside our comfortable corners, let’s see them… Dear reader, what have you seen in these past few weeks? Care to share?

Terrific Tuesday

Despite the title above, well I just used the word Terrific to counter what I have been feeling. Dear good vibes, I invite you.

Another scribbled post, I guess. Let’s start with the topic of being a hypochondriac. I’m being paranoid. But this coming long weekend I will definitely get myself checked. Really. Hope it’s nothing serious.

Serious. Well I got to finish thirty annotated bibliography and I only have finished seven. My prof is serious about his deadline which is on thursday. This thursday. Oh school…

Speaking of school I have a report later. Good luck to me. I hope everything will go on smoothly.

So there. Terrific Tuesday indeed.

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I want these steps when I have my own house.

Sunday Scribbles

Sunday drabbles rain is falling… *sighs* How I wish I am holding a cup of hot chocolate right now and reading a brand new book. That would be a good rainy night. Since I don’t have chocolate near me I have thought of using this time on hmmm, babbling. Lol. Here it goes dear reader.

Lessons that I’ve learned, the uses and differences between:
you’re and your
it’s and its
with regard and with regards
the china and china (lol)
your blog tone and the academic paper tone
Aaah, dear reader. Let me make it clear to you that there’s a difference…

Places I want to visit:
Italy
Coron, Palawan
Wizarding World of Harry Potter
But I can settle for Singapore, well, at least for this year!

Books I want to read:
new book of JK Rowling
3rd installment of the series by Julia Quinn
complete series of The Title of This Book is Secret
I adore books.

Drabbles. Shorties. Nothing to say in a very comprehensive manner so be satisfied with words instead of real sentences. Good night.

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craving.

Leaving July

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These past few days are so much stressor for me. I hate them. And I am glad to say that, finally, I am leaving July. Good bye July, it is nice leaving you…

July was not my month, my week, nor my day. I guess I was so happy back in June that I was not able to prepare for the stress that July brought. First and foremost, there’s my academic stress. No, I’m not attending law school contrary to the picture above. I was just there to get a book about international law for one of my classes. The greatest stress my acads gave me was the first time I had the chance to report in class. It was a super failure. After it I told myself that “hey, that’s alright. just bounce back”. But I was just kidding myself. I let my insecurities wallow me up and I ended up depressed and not able to function to do other stuff required of me. Second… c’mon now, I don’t think there’s a need to discuss the second or other things, the first one was enough for me.

Good thing it was Sunday yesterday. With a lot of help and friends I know now that my mind is on the right track again. I am positive again. I learned, again, that I am a winner. I am victorious! Thank you Destiny.

At the end of the day though, I am still glad in leaving July…

Eiga Sai: Happy Flight

It is the annual Eiga Sai again and this year I was able to watch, albeit, just one movie out of the ten. I was able to watch “Happy Flight” by Shinobu Yaguchi with my friends from college! How fun it was dear reader! I love spending my time with my friends and this was quality time. Eiga Sai, in the simplest term, is a Japanese film fest. I am happy that we were able to watch “Happy Flight”. It is a good film and indeed it was a flight that will make you happy…

 

I like movies like this, multiple protagonist withΒ satisfyingΒ ending for everyone… happy endings. What a day it was for Flight no. 1980! I think I fell in love with all the characters especially “miss sunshine” and the mechanic boy. Do not expect me for names of the characters, the whole film is in Japanese and I did not focus on names when I am reading the sub-titles. What I like most about the film was that everyone grew because of that one flight. They all have gotten their hearts desire… what is more joyful than that? You just can’t help but root for everyone of them! All of them are also so contagious, they were all so happy that, after the movie and some hours, I can’t help but smile. I highly recommend this movie for everyone, definitely not to be missed.

Hoarding Hong Kong

You can assume from the title alone that we had plentiful experiences during our trip to Hong Kong. Indeed dear reader we had hoarded Hong Kong. Again, it is a trip wherein we’re on the save side rather than the splurge side. Also, it’s a diy tour yet again!

Be sure to wear your most comfortable pair of shoes because Hong Kong main mode of transportation is walking (oh, the horror!). I think this is why you usually see them looking sexy and fit! If you are on a spontaneous tour buy your Octopus card already at the airport, it’s your electronic ticket for the MTR, buses, and a lot more. Plus, any left amount from your card can be redeemed again from their airport stall.

It was forecasted in the news that on the day that we will tour Hong Kong there would be a thunderstorm. Well, it wasn’t sunny for sure but there’s no thunder nor storm. Still, Hong Kong is a very humid place so wear light clothes during this season. We first tried our luck with The Peak. We rode the tram to reach it then a bus to go down, made us saved some hk dollars to be added to buy our pasalubongs. It’s a little bit disappointing reaching the peak of The Peak because of the weather, it was so foggy we couldn’t see anything. So after there we went to Tung Shung to ride the cable cars going to the Ngong Ping Village where this big Buddha is located. Since we were limited in time we were not able to roam around the village that much which is too bad because it is so pretty there! The cable car experience is not one to be missed. Tip, if you’re afraid of heights opt for a one way trip cable car and ride a bus to go down.

After those stops, lo and behold, we had reached Hong Kong Disneyland. I’m a happy girl dear reader. We rode the Mickey Mouse train going there, it was so cute. I was so excited to go back to Disneyland! First and foremost we ate at Tomorrowland, I had this sumptuous chicken wings and fries. Yum! Then the Disney Parade started, it was simply magical. My favorites are the princesses’ float, elegance and beauty oozed and Toy Story’s float that represents my childhood. We also watched a show there presenting The Lion King. We rode rides and lots of attractions. My favorite is Small World and Space Mountain! Then during the night the fireworks at Sleeping Beauty’s castle was just amazing, red, gold, and lots of animation lighted up the sky.

After Disneyland we went to Tsim Shia Tsui which is very anticlimactic, I mean really…after Disney. We went there to check out the Avenue of Stars and see the scenic view of the water and the city. You could all see this big buildings and famous company names.

Last stop for hoarding Hong Kong would definitely be their airport! You can do your shopping there and everything is already there. It is really really really huge plus it is also beautiful. Shops are many and variety is offered. I love their airport!

That’s it dear reader. I did hoarded Hong Kong a little. I will definitely come back a third time up to the nth time! It’s really worth hoarding.

Wearing My Red Flat Shoes

Last Wednesday was the first day of enrolment at University of the Philippines Diliman. Ah, dear reader… I never had any idea that it would be like that. Well, first and foremost, I want to announce and congratulate myself on my admission to their Masters in International Studies program (UN here I come). That’s my reason for being at UP that day. The memoirs of Bonaparte, Gen. McArthur, and Private Ryan have nothing compared to the horrors of that day…

Ok, maybe that’s a little bit exaggerated reader but I wasn’t prepared for anything like that. In my past experiences of enrolment all of them are smooth sailing and hassle free. Good thing that I wore my red flat shoes. I’m so grateful in that decision because I felt that I walked all day round. I walked, walked, walked and walked. Oh, and did I mentioned the heat?

Anyway, putting aside my woes and sufferings I can still say that I had a blessed day. Well, first, I was able to finished my enrolment. Starting from zero enlisted subjects to having 9 units then there’s the bloody path of validation, assessment, and payment. All of that torture in just one day! Second, I made new friends. This might be the best part of the day. I truly enjoyed eating lunch with them and I acknowledge that without them I wouldn’t be able to complete my enrolment or worse I’ll end up crying in a corner looking very much defeated with the school’s system.

With this kind of situation, referring to the enrolment, you need to be always positive. Think positive and that’s what going to happen. Second, be prepared. Have water and music at hand. Third, wear flats ladies. Lastly, make new friends. Smile and everything will follow…

Tips and Tales on Travelling

Tales:
I just came from the beautiful land of Cebu, Philippines! I had a blast with my friends and all of it within my budget. It seems that it is our last hoorah for the summer. Cebu is very historical and that’s why it is essential to visit historical places here, the most famous is Magelan’s Cross at Cebu City. The original cross though is now encased within the wood but this place is really a must-see spot. You can’t say you’ve gone to Cebu without going here. There are lots of places to see at Cebu such as the Fort San Pedro, Yap-San Diego ancestral house, Casa de Gorrordo, and temples like the Taoist Temple at Beverly Hills! The list can go on and on. Also, don’t limit yourself with Cebu City for Mactan is just a short bridge away! Mactan is famous for the Lapu-lapu shrine wherein the cheapest pasalubong can be bought. Mactan also boasts beautiful and cheap resorts, the ocean is really blue! If you’re feeling to splurge then go and enjoy Plantation Bay for only 2000php. Like any pinoy culinary you will not find any fault with Cebu’s dishes. If you’re on a budget just opt to eat Aa’s Barbecue, they have lots of branches in Cebu and Mactan. Be on the budget but don’t forget to indulge yourself with Lechon Cebu. The lechon there is not only sumptuous but it is relatively cheap, the best out there is CnT. This tour is really another experience for me since we made the tour ourselves. Lastly, I enjoyed my 2nd trip to Cebu because I’m with new friends that are really positive and beautiful…

Tips:
1. Buy your tickets early! Wait for promo fares. Despite the recent news about flights getting delayed and all the hassles our flights are all on time. Maybe, a big factor here is that it isn’t the peak season anymore. Don’t hesitate on getting a trip to Cebu after May (summer), Cebu have longer summer days so expect it to be sunny there even if it’s gloomy somewhere else.
2. Look for promos for your hotels. Of course, hotels that are nearer to the airport and malls are more expensive than others. The hotel we stayed in might not be five star but it is more than acceptable (hot shower, tv, free wifi, clean beds). Search for Alba Uno.
3. Rent a van! It might not be cost-effective but it’s surely time-effective. We rented the van for 8am to 4pm. The driver such knows the places where tourists should go plus if he doesn’t he can contact his colleagues. Also, it is very comfortable. In the long run I think we save money from renting a van instead of riding taxis after every destinations!
4. Utilise the front desk! Hotel receptionist do knows a lot. They’re locals for God’s sake! Ask away and they have loooots of suggestions to give.
5. Research before the trip. There are lots of site there that can help you with you diy tour.
6. Be alert and enjoy! Nothing can ruin a trip more than having bad experiences along the way. Be cautious, especially with pick-pockets. Lastly, enjoy! It’s a vacation! Forget about your worries and smile a lot!

There you go dear reader. Live your life to the fullest!