Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Dream Come True

I have been pushing this post for more than a year now and I am now finally finding time to post about my trip. It may not seem as exciting anymore, however, I find pure bliss in perusing through the photos I took while I was there. Reminiscing each moment brings me back to the best time I've ever had in my life. This was definitely a dream come true <3

I visited La Basilique du Sacré Cœur de Montmartre and climbed over 300 steps to the dome. The price? An astounding view! Definitely worth the glute workout! After admiring its wonderous beauty from the highest peak of the city, I continued to stroll along the streets of Paris with mon ami who granted my request that we dine in a French restaurant so I can people watch from what they call the "terrace" and feel ever so French for the day. 

Every inch of Paris exudes a beauty I can't describe in words. Even abandoned buildings has an exquisite detailed artwork that tells a story.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015


It's 6:01 p.m., Sunday. The silence in my house allowed me to hear the eerie ticking of the clock. I found myself solemnly sitting in my dining area with my pug sleeping (and snoring) on the floor and I'm surrounded by three types of electronics that have all failed to entertain me. I've decided to use my time wisely by not allowing my mind to go idle. The beach would have been awesome to visit but my heart is telling me otherwise. I need something to look forward to; something good, something positive, something that would make me unbelievably happy right now. Thank God I remembered! It's still feels surreal but thank God that in a month from now, I will be in the streets of Paris.

Thank God blogspot recorded the day I wrote the draft above. The last post I published on this blog was about my undeniable want and need to step foot in Paris. I was blessed enough to be invited by a coworker who happens to be getting married in Spain. It turns out, he has a friend who lives in Paris and happens to be visiting California. We met and all the stars aligned!

I got more than what I bargained for! I bought myself a round trip ticket and not only did I get to visit Paris but London and Madrid as well and attended my friend's wedding. I cannot stress enough how waiting for the right time always works out. Everything I wanted for myself I received! Inevitably, there were a few hiccups but who am I to complain? I roamed Paris by myself =)

Monday, July 29, 2013

Je t'aime Paris

The tune of the word Paris (pa-REE) makes me feel like I should already be on a plane, on my way to this amazing place. There is something magical about that city situated on the River Seine. It gets me excited knowing it exists! I seem to have developed an undying love for a place I've never been to. Is that even possible?

My love began the day I cancelled my flight with Swiss Air bound for Switzerland. I simply set my heart on reusing the ticket to see Paris. I decided to fly the following year to Geneva, Switzerland and from there, take the 250 mile scenic route to Paris by train. Searching for a perfect hotel was already a tedious process. Looking for a flight with an arrival that will perfectly match with the departure time of the train was an added scuffle. But it was finding out that I’m only able to use my ticket within thirty days from the day I made a phone call to reschedule my flight that made everything fall apart. Not only was it going to be extremely costly due to the Olympics, it was also too short of a notice to request for a vacation from work. I was more disheartened by the opportunity lost than the wasted ticket that cost me quite a fortune when I purchased it.

I'm still a dreamer who wishes to set foot in the City of Lights or what I prefer to say, La Ville-Lumière. I feel like saying certain things in French gets me one step closer to being there. Haha! If I can only impulsively purchase a ticket again and jet there... hey after all, it we only live once right? But as much as I would like to, I don't think it's my time to visit yet. The company I dream of working for happen to have a firm in Ile-de-France... And who knows, maybe, one day, I get to accomplish both at the same time. In the meantime, I'll keep Paris in my bucket list!

Every great dream begins with a dreamer


Sunday, July 7, 2013

The Untalented Conquers Blogging

I'm a bit out of my comfort zone since I really do not have a knack for writing. It is not at all my forte! I cringe to the thought of essays, thesis paper and research papers. I have a blogspot solely because I'm trying to live vicariously though the life of an exceptional writer--like my sister, my dad, my aunt or my cousin. I am definitely surrounded by a set of wordsmiths and not a drop of talent flowed through my vein.

While I've posted several blogs already, I kept my website private. I've written essays in the past but only my professors had set eyes on it. I wasn't keen about essay writing and showing others what I've written is somewhat frightening. I can confidently say I've only written B grade papers. Lol. Confidently. My sister's natural ability to compose such beautiful pieces have inspired me to write. I still, however, find my compositions to be not up to par so I get mental block amid of it all. Haha. Mental block? Oh wait, it's writer's block.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Lake Tahoe and Route 395

Took a road trip two weekends ago to attend a friend's wedding. It took us over 11 hours to reach our destination, leaving at about 1 a.m. Friday (Saturday morning, rather). It was a long, sleepless night (for me, at least) but the drive was grand nonetheless. Watched the sunrise crawl down the vast mountain as I drove along the 395 route to Lake Tahoe. Going at about 70 mph and using a camera phone, the stills I've captured is about as good as it gets. It didn't give the beauty much justice. The view was magnificent and the mountains are just grandiose! With only very few vehicles on the road, absorbing this scenic route wasn't a task. It made the drive very much worth it... although I would fly next time. Eleven hours is a wee bit too much for a one way drive!

If you find driving, possibly numbing your "behind," for 8-10 hours as pleasant, I highly suggest taking this route so you can consume the vast mountain range created by years of continental plate movements! The greener pastures, mountains of pines and beautiful homes will welcome you as get closer to Lake Tahoe.

Saturday Afternoon ~ In Lake Tahoe, sitting as a passenger. It was such a beautiful day! I've always loved the contrast of nature's bright blue skies and vibrant green grass.

The sole purpose of our trip to Lake Tahoe

Sunday ~ In front of the bride's house. 

Mandatory picture at the lake

All smiles for the perfect weather at the Lake

This was the view driving home. It almost seems like the road was leading to an enchanting land and I was anticipating to see little elves in medieval knight costumes opening the gates as we approach the massive cobblestone castle.

But instead, we saw something more realistic and beautiful.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Home Sweet Home

ALAS! After 7 long years, my family decided to fly out together (for the first time) to see the rest of our family in Manila and enjoy a long-awaited, well deserved vacation. Four luggages, four boxes and four carry-on luggages later, we headed to the airport. Our excitement was short lived after finding out our flight to Japan is delayed by three hours, which in turn, causing us to spend one night in Narita AND two additional flights (Narita to Cebu to Manila) before even arriving to our desired destination. After a 2 long hour wait at the Japan immigration, we were finally able to settle at our hotel close to the Narita Airport. Our flight resumed the very next day. The two day travel took a toll on us BUT that did not stop us from enjoying the unexpected cool breeze that welcomed us at the Manila airport. Along with the scream and hugs thrown around when tita baby and tita rose picked us up, I finally felt home.

Below are pictures of things I did and the places I visited! (To watch the video collage I created, click on Three Weeks In Seven Minutes)

Due to bad weather in Japan, our airline arrived late causing us to board late

Since we did not have time, we just took a quick mandatory picture in front of our hotel, by a tree I would like to think is a cherry blossom not in season.

 Villa Escudero: 
For P1,250 (roughly $35), it includes kawayan (bamboo) rafting, pool access, museum visit, a ride pulled by a carabao with serenaders and the highlight, a buffet lunch served at the bottom of the waterfall! (excuse my foot, it's the only way I can get in the picture with my family)

Beautiful paradise of Villa Escudero

Soup, vinegar and soy sauce are served in a coconut bowl! There are also small harmless fishes swimming around by your feet

Pulled by a carabao while being serenaded (can you spot the guitar?)

Where I spent most of my summer growing up. Childhood memories hits a spot in my heart causing me to feel nostalgic every time. 

Why this picture? For some reason, this very spot brings me back a whole lot of memories

Hanging bridge at Camp Vizcarra in Ramon, Isabela. Don't know much about this place except for its hanging bridge where our family (consisted of 2 vans) created havoc running back and forth on. 

Stopped by Magat Dam, located on the Magat River in Ramon, Isabela. Constructed in 1978 and inaugurated by the late President Marcos in 1982. It is one of the largest dams in the world, which is the source of irrigation water and provider of hydroelectric power.

Amelita Resort with these beautiful ladies

View from our condo unit in Cubao, Quezon City. Unfornately, a building is currently being built and will be blocking the view we have.

 Practiced Visita Iglesia for the first time and here are a few of the beautiful, breathtaking churches we were blessed enough to visit. I of course cannot recall the names of these churches, let alone, where they are located.

They call this the Sacrament of Penance during holy week. 

Blessed to see Regina Rica, Our Lady of the Holy Rosary. She is located in a new pilgrimage in Tanay, Rizal. The convent where She stands is known to offer peace and healing. For more information, visit their website, by clicking on this link -> Regina Rica

Enjoying some dirty ice cream. The word, "dirty" stems from the way the ice cream is sold. As you can see, we are just on the side street where public transportations are hustlin and bustlin close to us and to top it off, manong isn't wearing a glove to scoop my ice cream.

Eco Park: A public park where La Mesa Watershed, a dam supplying the water supply in Manila, is located. The surrounding forest is b-e-a-u-t-i-f-u-l!!

High Street at The Fort: A highly urbanized district in Manila. Composed of corporate offices, shopping malls, high-end residences, exceptional restaurants and clubs.

Interactive station of the cross at The Fort. I visited during holy week. A good friend was one of the architects in this project.

Mall of Asia: Second largest mall in the Philippines, Third in Asia and Fourth in the World. Imagine a foot traffic of 200,000 people daily!

The church I used to go to every summer 

Food at Barrio Fiesta that fed 6 people, costing us a little over P2000, roughly about $50-$60. Outstanding dishes for such good prices!

Bon Voyage! Ninoy Aquino International Airport

Bidding the airport goodbye

While we hanker for longer vacations, shorter trips seems to be much more enjoyable because every minute is spent wonderfully. <3

Bernardo Winery

I was invited by a very good friend to a winery back in February and although I was adamant due to my "okay" experience with past wineries, I decided to give it a go. Boy am I glad I did. It surely is the best winery in town. Not only is it closer to where I live, the experience was not at all standard like the rest of wineries up in Temecula. We weren't hurried to finish the drinks so we can jump back in to the limo and go to the next one. Bernardo Winery is 17 acres of land and was founded in 1889. That's over 125 years old! It's quite historial if you ask me. It has little shops right outside of the tasting room, a little museum, century old buildings and wine making equipment, a vineyard and the ranch's display within the vicinity are genuinely old; rustic and one of a kind.

Picture taken by a very nice stranger. The expressions were genuine!

Here's a shot I took by the vineyard. I edited the color just to add a rustic look.