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Showing posts from 2008

How I Wandered Off For 8 Days : PART 1 - Journey to Camiguin

8 Days, Five Provinces, Three major islands, One Little Lady A week before I turned 27, I went on a backpacking trip and set off to some parts of Mindanao by myself, sailed on a ferry to the Visayas to visit two of my friends, flew back to Manila and rode a 12 hour bus ride up Northen Luzon with two other travel buds. I didn't have any solid goals set, I just wanted to get outside Manila and get to the 3 major islands of the Philippines.  This is how I rolled.  Dates: November 16-23, 2008
Starting Point : Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Pasay
Destinations:
LEG 1 - MINDANAO
1.Misamis Oriental – Cagayan De Oro City, Balingoan
2.Camiguin - Mambajao
3.Bukidnon – Malaybalay City LEG 2- VISAYAS
4.Cebu – Mabolo City, Mactan LEG 3 - NORTHERN LUZON
5.Ilocos Norte – Pagudpud, Bangui, Burgos, Laoag, Batac, Paoay Money in My Pocket : 10,000 pesos for everything – food, lodging, transpo (excludes the two flights which I booked in advance; Manila to CDO and Cebu to Manila)

I took the 4:25 AM flight from …

Camiguin Travel Information

CAMIGUIN FROM LUMBIA AIRPORT, CDO:
Rode a jeep waiting outside the airport (17 pesos) – a much cheaper way than riding a cab. It left after about 10minutes of waiting. The jeepney driver let me off at a point where R2-marked jeeps are waiting. This is the jeepney route going to Agora Bus Terminal (8 pesos/head.
From the Agora Bus Terminal (a kilometer away Limketkai Mall and Ororama Megacenter), ride an aircon bus (those buses bound for Butuan) to Balingoan Terminal. (Approximately 1 hr 20 min-2 hours by bus, Fare :110 pesos); You may also eat your breakfast here if you’re not very choosy. There are tons of eateries in the area, as well as a Mister Donut stall. I ate breakfast at this green-walled eatery and paid 63 pesos for a botted water, fish and rice
Once in Balingoan Bus terminal, walk to the Balingoan port – about 100 meters away. It’s super near! Just cross the highway after exiting the Balingoan Bus terminal, turn to your right, walk and turn left at the first road. The walk is …

A Learning from our Mt. Tarak Experience

Yesterday was another adventure with my travel buds and as always, it was an experience filled with laughter and learnings.
We were not able to make it to the summit because we had a strict turn-around time. Only two people in our very small group made it to the famous ridge-Jules and Ren, about 40 minutes away from the summit, while two us (yours truly and Glee) guarded their packs and slept to our heart’s content in the middle of an inclined terrain, right on top of the soil with a chilly mountain breeze refreshing our sweaty, tired bodies.
Key Learning:

Ang pikon ay laging talo. The major reason why we did not make it to the summit was due to an encounter with the most arrogant and condescending mountaineer I have ever met. We were in the Papaya river, gearing up for our assault. Based from our IT, we should be able to make it to the summit in time - that's about 90minutes from where we were. We did not hire a guide because the barangay treasurer informed us that we didn’t need on…

Merry Christmas Everyone!

I'm supposed to be doing something else but I just have to drop by and greet everyone a MERRY CHRISTMAS!Happy Birthday Jesus! (although there has been a dispute over Jesus' real birthday, some claim it's around the first 6 months of the year) but for us Catholics - well, today is His day...

Success Finally!

Bwahahahaha..(and I just had to laugh in that maniacal tone)…I was able to produce 48 pieces of edible chocolates. My brother taught me an “only fools can mess this up” type of dessert and I was able to successfully execute the recipe last weekend. Bwahahaha!I will start experimenting with the variants in the coming weeks with my loyal friends and family as guinea pigs. My younger sister also came up with a catchy name for my concoctions – Chrissy’s Crispies.
This is what I came up. The How:
1. Just buy chocolate bars from the specialty stores (one bar costs about 70-75 pesos each) and each big bar can produce up to 25 pieces (1 ounce each piece).
2. Melt the chocolate bars under low heat or do the double broiler method.
3. After the bar has melted, mix the rice crispies. How much rice crispies you will put depends on how much you want in your chocolates.
4. Pour the mixture over the baking cups and wait for it to harden up.

My Christmas Shopping Strategy

With Christmas only a couple of days away, almost everyone seems to move in a more hurried rhythm than usual. Imyself have been lacking sleep thepast three days because I just started with Christmas shopping. I’m quite disorganized this year,I don’t have a dependable Christmas list, that one I bring around when roaming the stores and I just rely on my memory in deciding who to give gifts. It’s weird but the method or the lack of one is working quite well for me. I was able to buy gifts for a lot of people for a small amount. I also shared the expenses with my friend Glee because we had a lot of common pals. This year's Christmas shopping is so blessed. I ran into a lot bargain sales andI was able to buy tons of great items and even some silver jewelries. It’s like my guardian angel was the one doing the shopping for me given the fact that I hate shopping. The only reason why I go to malls these days is either to meet my friends or to buy something I really need or really want. Tra…

The Day I Tried to Make Truffles - A Story of Disaster

One Saturday night, I  decided to skip a company party and stayed home to engage in a domestic adventure - making truffles. I found a seemingly fool-proof recipe online and I decided to try it despite my limited kitchen skills. Well, I’ve baked before and sometimes I cook dishes like pasta (Lucky Me pancit canton counts right? Oh yeah, I know how to make pesto too,  because it's so easy!) . I also know how to fry, you know  hotdogs and ham. Hehehe..but frying is my Achilles' heel. I hate waiting and so most of what I fry end up burnt beyond recognition – but I still eat it out of loyalty to myself.
I used to bake choco chip cookies back in college and feed it to my victims - usually close friends and family members. I did receive good feedback so I guess it wasn’t that bad although the consistency of my cookies are similar to brownies.
This time around – I chose truffles because it sounds nice and the recipe seemed simple and everybody goes – oh woow, you’re making truffles. H…

My Weekend Adventure

This coming weekend, I have no big plans but to enjoy it quietly, go jogging, fix my files, do some planning for 2009 and engage in my latest conquest – truffles. No I am not going shopping for chocolates. I will make them! I shall play the role of a kitchen fairy turning raw ingredients into magical treats. No mountains to climb, no places to discover but our kitchen. This weekend, I shall be a dessert warrior and these are part of my battle gear:I found a seemingly fool-proof recipe online. I just hope this time, this domestic thing won’t turn into disaster. You see, I easily get bored and I am a bit impatient. I hate waiting, that’s why me and cooking don’t always go as peacefully as it normally should. Just this year, I almost burned myself and the house trying to fry hotdogs, but I never give up trying to discover that one signature dish or dessert that I will be known for. Maybe this time, Iwill be successful, who knows, my truffles may become so yummy, I will be known as the tr…

New Addictions

I've recently taken a new interest in playing the online games available in Facebook. I didn't realize there were tons to choose from, it's quite entertaining. One particular game that is coveting some of my sleeping time is the Word Challenge. I love it. It's similar to Text Twist which is one of my favorite games. Hehehe... I also love Scrabble and forming puzzles. Did that when I was a kid and I still find it amusing until now. It's quite delightful to know that some things haven't changed. I still love word games. I still love puzzles. There's also another game which got most of my officemates hooked, it's called Mafia Wars where you get to do virtual crimes and get rewarded for it. It goes against my virtues but if I'm going to be really honest about the whole thing, I do find it a bit entertaining. I played it a while ago and I already beat some guys up - virtually. On a more virtous note..hehehe, guess what?! I already booked two flights for …

The Way to A Woman's Heart is Also Through Her Stomach - That is if The Woman Is Me

The very first time I met my sister’s suitor inside our house – I felt an irrational but normal reaction any sibling would have. I wanted to pound his face to the ground without knowing anything about him. Fortunately, the sane part of me took over and I gave him a bright smile instead. After a light, routine interrogation, I left them alone. I was again reminded of the fact the my younger sister isn’t five anymore , she’s actually way past her teens but then, I’m the older sister, being extra protective to the young ones is innate, plus being a defender in football for the past 13 years makes me extra aggressive.He better not mess with my sister.However, 2 boxes of donuts, 1 box of brownies and 1 box of cheese rolls later, my initial first impression of my sister’s suitor has changed in a positive light. I am now looking forward to get to know him more and to see what other treats he could bring inside the house. Hehehe..let me make this clear though - I am not selling out, it’s just…

Fear

There are a lot of thingsI fear and I wonder how I ever get anywhere else, get to do a lot of everything else.I’m afraid of the dark, I’m afraid of the supernatural. I am afraid of crime, I am afraid ofdeep waters, speaking in front of a huge crowd. I am afraid of cats and I am afraid of heights and the list goes on. And every time I encounter that familiar feeling of dread - that mixture of sweat and cold that makes me want to run back to my mother - I do the following things :1. Pray2. Breathe inand...3. Let go of my fear...I guess that's what makes me a brave person.

Three Straight Days of Merriment and Body Pains

The past three days has been a mixture of events that brought fun and body pains to myself and my activity buds.

November 29-30

Me and the rest of my backpacking group (with the exception of Oli , Gay, Olay) – ECOF celebrated our first anniversary in Anawangin Cove. There was another important reason behind the trip but I can’t share what it is because it’s not my tale to tell. The bad part was since we chose to go frolicking in a remote island with no cellphone signal, we had to miss an important annual event – Alan’s birthday party (Sorry Alan..sorry Pat!). Alan is my friend from college and I’ve known him for about 12 years.I thank God he was quite understanding about the whole thing but I still feel guilty about it. I am currently racking my brain on how to make up for what I missed.
Anyway, back to my Anawangin tale…on my 7th time there, I saw some changes over the place – two of those, I am half-happy about:
1. There are some ice cream vendors in the area. It’s just so weird heari…

PART 7 - Malacañang of the North

After lunch at the Herencia Cafe, we flagged a  tricycle to take us to the Malacañang of the North. I don't really know anything about it  except that I read from another blog that it was built as a rest house for the Marcoses, a famous political clan in the Philipines. It's off my itinerary but I was curious to see what it looks like. 

There weren't a lot of visitors when we arrived and we didn't find anyone available to tour us  around so we just wandered off on our own. It would have been nice to know something about the place though.  Me and my friend just pretended to be little Marcoses and walked around looking for "Lola Imelda".  I found the rooms and furniture quite appealing especially since I am a fan of huge spaces. I can tell it has seen better days though. 




Paoay lake can be seen from the lawn. Staring at it was relaxing. How nice it would be to have a garden with a massive view of the lake. Dreaming...
We finished exploring the entire place in less…