Thursday, November 26, 2015

LT / The Proust Questionnaire #16

Question: What do you most value in your friends?

One too many times, I've found myself wondering what I did right to deserve the friends I have. I don't exactly have a lot - there's only a handful of people whom I really love fiercely - but they're more than enough. Being able to call these people my friends makes me the luckiest girl in the world, and having them by my side is a constant reminder that I, too, am loved - more than I probably know and deserve, at that.
I feel safe around these guys.
I value them for their patience. I'll be first to admit that it's not easy to be my friend - I have a bad temper and really awful mood swings. I can be testy, tough, whatever. But these people, they don't seem to mind, or if they do, they're able to let it go easily enough to continue being my friend anyway.

And for that, I will always be eternally grateful.


Wednesday, November 25, 2015

MW / F clef

I have yet to learn to play well enough for an actual gig, and quite frankly, I'm not sure if I ever will, but I still love the bass. I still play from time to time, in the comfort of my room. Without an amplifier, however, I'm really just doing fretboard exercises. But you see, that's the beauty of the bass - you don't rely solely on your ears. You feel the groove, and it will tell you if you're on the right track even without much volume.
(image from the internet)
My friend Aya, who for a while was also my bass teacher, would always tell me that "it's only a C if the bassist plays a C." My other friend, Mally Paraguya (P.O.T., Tame the Tikbalang, Eraserheads for a while, and Wunjo) once said, "You'll sing with the melody, but you'll groove with the bass." The bass is the backbone of any song, and of any band, for that matter. Its power is subtle and understated, and that's why it appeals to me.

So here's another crazy idea: I'm going to get a bass clef tattoo on my next trip to Dumaguete! I want it on my left forearm. Can't wait! :)


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

HFT / My most comfortable shirt EVER

I have a lot of clothes, ranging from beautiful dresses to flattering tops and cute skirts, most of which I scored from my ukay-ukay trippies. But since I turned my back from the corporate world, around the same time when I embraced jiu-jitsu, I've only been wearing the same shirts over and over, and my favorite is my Libre Fighting shirt, which I scored from the knife-fighting seminar I attended last October 10 in Functional Fitness Makati.
Three to go!
Wicked Fight Wear is a homegrown brand that offers a more affordable alternative to the overly-priced dry fit shirts made abroad. I actually like it better than those dry fit shirts; the fabric is thicker but it doesn't feel warmer. It's so comfortable that it's become my first pick whenever I open my closet. I've worn it to the grocery, to the bank, to Divisoria, and even to the office.

And it's pretty badass, too. :)

I do my laundry once a week, and my Wicked Fight Wear shirts see the inside of my machine each time. Haha! I plan to get three more, so I get to wear it every single day of the week. It's my new uniform! BOOM!


Monday, November 23, 2015

GVM / Pocket getaway #4

I can't always go to the beach, so I took the beach with me. Well, sort of.

Here's a still of the beautiful Naked Island in Siargao, for your bucket list:
Just sand
Have a great week ahead, folks! :)


Saturday, November 21, 2015

The Proust Questionnaire #15

Question: What is your most marked characteristic?

I had help answering this question. Don't get me wrong - I have enough self-awareness to allow me to enumerate my characteristics, both good and bad. But to pick one and say it is most marked, now that's just difficult. So I asked the question to five friends from different circles: my best friend and life partner, Joandrea; my dear friend and former boss, Bobby; my brother from another mother, teammate and business partner, Franco; my super financial adviser and Kuya Landlord, Jerry; and my oldest friend, Pauline.

Before giving their answers, they commented on how difficult the question was. They gave me a number of different characteristics: articulate, confident, adventurous, hot-headed, principled, impatient, persistent, athletic, adaptive, passionate, stubborn, strong, resilient, rational, and loving. I suppose a different side of me stands out to each of them, depending on our common circumstance.
The question calls for only one answer, and I'm going to go for resilience despite Joandrea's insistence on loving. Haha! This is a numbers game, and that characteristic was most mentioned (she actually answered that too, so there shouldn't be any hard feelings. Haha!).

I am resilient. I bounce back, no matter how seemingly devastating a blow may be, and each time I do, I'm even stronger. I'm not invincible, nor do I claim to be. But I choose to be strong, because I owe it to myself, and I owe it to the wonderful woman who raised me.


Friday, November 20, 2015

FTF / #MindaNOWorNever: Butuan + Magallanes, part 1

A considerable amount of time was spent inside a bus when Hannah and I embarked on The Great Mindanao Adventure, and by the time it was over, I desperately needed a good back massage. Haha! From Camiguin, Hannah and I took the ferry to the mainland, and then hopped on a bus bound for Butuan City. Take note - it's not read as "Butu-an," but as "But-wan."
The books made me love the cafe all the more! 
Good selection, good prices.
We got there after dark, and we were really hungry and exhausted. Marvin, our colleague from Selecta, met with us at a gas station before the city bus terminal. He drove us to Julian's Inn (the preferred lodgings of non-local sales agents of different companies), and after checking in and freshening up, we headed over to Margie's for a hearty dinner. The food was good, and I loved the cheesecake, too! :)
Hallway at Julian's
Hannah and I plopped on to our beds and almost instantly fell asleep. I got up at 4am to get some work done, and around 7am, we were ready to hit the streets! We each hired our own habal-habal to drive us around the city. The first place we went to was Delta Zipline, which we thought was the longest zipline in Asia. As it turns out, it was only the second longest at 1.3 kilometers, because a 1.4 kilometer line was built recently in Pangasinan (NOTED).
My turn!
The 4x4 ride from the end tower to the starting tower was, in itself, an adventure! I wonder how it would be like to drive down that path on a rainy day. The starting tower has a wonderful 360-degree view of God's green earth, and I quietly took it all in as I waited for my turn on the line.
All that green! :)
I repeatedly muttered "thank you, Lord" throughout the ride: I was so overwhelmed with gratitude for all the wonderful places I got to see, and my heart was just bursting. It was a brief ride (it lasted only a little over a minute), but it was enough. I felt like Peter Pan flying above my version of Neverland - seemingly unending forests with a sparkling river cutting across. A part of the zip went through what the guides called "The Tunnel," and for a second there, I imagined I was some sort of super spy from Alias or Mission Impossible. Haha!
We asked for "falls" and we got "polls"
Excavation photos
While we were still in Iligan, I joked to Hannah that we were "chasing waterfalls" (if you do not know the reference, then you are too young) on this trip. We asked our guides if there were any "falls" we had to visit, and they brought us to a pool, not knowing that they inadvertently forced an awful pun. It was a hot day, but we didn't have time for a swim, so we headed off to our next stop - the Balangay Shrine of the National Museum. Butuan had among the oldest settlements in the country, and the Balangay Shrine housed the remnants of the baot found by Japanese archaeologists some decades back.
This marks where the first Mass in the country was supposedly held.
Landing shrine
There are conflicting historical accounts about Fernando Magallanes (Ferdinand Magellan), and there are groups who claim that he did not land in Lapu-Lapu, but in Butuan City. Like Cebu, Butuan has its own Magellan Shrine - well, shrines. One is on top of a hill, with a view of Agusan River, while the other one is on Masao Beach, where he supposedly landed.
Masao Beach
Kaon Ta!
We stopped by a random paluto spot near Masao Beach for lunch; the food was cheap but delicious! Hannah and I spent about Php300 for us and our drivers, and we were all too full to function by the time we were done eating!

(End of part 1)


Thursday, November 19, 2015

LT / The Proust Questionnaire #14

Question: What is your favorite occupation?

This question's pretty easy: WRITING! I've been writing for more than half my life, and although I didn't join the workforce in 2007 as a writer, I eventually became one. My journey to my current career is a mix of conscious choices, divine intervention, and fortuitous events, and I remember each turning point fondly (even the painful ones).
Day job!
For the longest time, I feared becoming a writer by profession, because I didn't want to run the risk of losing my love for it (same reason I didn't get into a career in music). But life had other plans, and now, I'm enjoying working as a writer. I have yet to attain financial stability, I'll admit, but I'm getting there.

It helps that my boss, Lendro, took it upon himself to mentor me. He knows how to manage me; he's intuitive enough to know when to give a push and when to give space. He's a great motivator, too; on days when I just want to throw in the towel, talking to him gets me back on track.

But that's not even the best part about him. More than a boss and a mentor, I consider Lendro a friend. What I appreciate most about him is his compassion. He knows what's going on in my personal life, including how my brother got sick. I asked him for help, and by help I meant new freelance projects, and he gave it to me, and more.

One evening, as I was about to go to the hospital to take care of my brother, he called to invite me to a free movie (Tita Annie, another colleague in the events scene, had extra tickets to the advanced screening of The Intern). I had a couple of hours to spare, so I accepted the invitation (the movie was great, by the way - Miggs and I couldn't stop raving about it). When it was done, I rushed off to the hospital, and so I sent him and Tita Annie an SMS to say thank you.

His reply: "You're welcome. You need a break. We all do."

That just makes me love being a writer even more.

What is your favorite occupation?