Bohol-bound in November

Planning for Bohol, and I am getting dizzy.

This year has been a travel year for me. There was Baguio in January, Davao in March, Quezon in May, Palawan in June and Cagayan de Oro in August, and General Santos City in September. My last trip for the year is going to be Bohol in November! (Unless, of course, we go somewhere for New Year’s…which has about 90% chance of happening.)

I don’t usually blog about a trip before the actual trip, but this is probably also because I’m usually not the one planning my trips. We went to Baguio and Cagayan de Oro for weddings, and in both trips we didn’t really have itineraries aside from ther wedding. Davao was arranged by Avatar Media, and GenSan by the Soccsksargenbloggers. Quezon was Pahiyas. Ah, for Palawan, I helped with the itinerary, but my mom was the final decision-maker. But for this trip… Ahahaha. I was doing the legwork. Sort of.

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Puerto Princesa trip 2010 + soundtrack

Four days. Ten tracks. One family on one awesome vacation. Oh yeah!

Day 1
And it’s you and me in the summertime
And all the sunshine banishes the dark

Track 1: Summertime – The Sundays

My brain was a mess. The day of our flight out and I hadn’t packed my bag—although I’d already planned out what I was going to bring, so that was a good thing, right?— and I still needed a couple of new shorts—all the shorts I owned were for use indoors only— and I wasn’t sure if I had any sunblock left and I really needed hair clips, too, and omgomgOMG I’M GOING TO PALAWAN!!! my brain kept repeating.

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at ako’y biglang naging manlalakbay

Saturday: Scuba Diving at Anilao, Batangas
Left Manila at 3AM (arrrgh I was so sleepy!!!). Went snorkelling right after diving orientation, while waiting for my turn to dive. Got to meet a clownfish family (hehe) and a couple of giant clams, among others. Went for the dive around 2PM. Went below until 30 feet. IT WAS AWESOME. Went for dinner at Grace Sister of Rose (haha! that name always gets me.) Got home around midnight.

Sunday: Victory LB alumni homecoming at Los Baños
A long-overdue reunion. Had fun meeting people I had not seen in 3 years, which is mostly my fault for not coming to visit Los Baños in forever. Went to buy Mer-Nel’s cake for the family and for the roommates. Didn’t get to go on the last bus back to Manila, so we had to go to Calamba, and then Alabang, and then Cubao. Nyaharharhar. Note to self: remember that the last bus leaves at 8:30. Got home around 11 in the evening.

Monday: Every Nation Productions outing at Alabang
Killer Uno. Videoke. Lunch, lunch, lunch, and more lunch. Charoodles. A million laughs with officemates and family. Lunch, lunch. Frisbee. Nap under the trees. And more lunch. Haha! Got home around 7:30. Looked up at the sky and saw Venus, Jupiter, and Luna smiling at me 🙂  Texted everyone I know with a decent camera to please, please, please take a photo of it. This photo is by Beth.

What a weekend! Note that after every “event”, I went back to Quezon City to spend the night at home. Hay.

One thing I would like to change about myself is that I don’t travel a lot, no matter how much I would like to. But that’s going to change!!!


Sarah the Traveler?

According to the Lakbayan Quiz, I am most definitely not.

I saw this in Aileen‘s blog, and decided to take it, myself. I got a low score. Haha! I guess I shouldn’t have expected much. Sure, I go on “road trips” every now and then, but they’re mostly just within Luzon, or, more specifically, Manila.

Hm. Must work on travelling, then. As I mentioned in an old To Do post, I want to travel all over the Philippines before I die. ^^

My Lakbayan grade is D!

How much of the Philippines have you visited? Find out atLakbayan!

Created by Eugene Villar.

QotD: To Do

What’s on your “do before I die” list?
Submitted by Caroline.

A lot of things, I guess. But the one I want to write about today is…

Tour the Philippines (my country) on foot.

Well, not really on foot on foot. Of course, I’ll ride buses and jeepneys and horses and carabaos… But definitely not my car (if I have one by then).

I’ve only been to a teeny tiny part of my country, and I feel bad about it. I mean, it’s MY country, I brag about it to foreigners, but I’ve barely seen its essence. I have yet to experience its grand festivals, see the lush flora and fauna, and swim in its pristine waters. I haven’t seen the diverse culture with my own eyes: I’ve only heard about them in textbooks, and from other people’s stories.

I wanna go backpacking!!! I wanna walk the dusty dirt roads, trek the mountain trails and get down and dirty with nature. I want to walk through Filipino cities that aren’t Manila. And even parts of Manila that I haven’t been to.

God, there are a gazillion things to do here and I’ve done almost zilch.

Well, that’s going to change… before I die. ^_____________^


I had said repeatedly that I wasn’t a beach girl. That I wasn’t one who swam in the ocean. That I preferred the cool, clean pool water — especially if it was natural spring water of Laguna — to saltwater.

Until now, I would still say that I’m not one to swim in the ocean.

That is, if we follow my definition of swim. For me, swimming is doing laps. Swimming is racing across the pool. Swimming can also be lying on a float, relaxingly drifting back and forth in the pool, feeling the soothing pressure of the water on my legs while the cool wind gently blows on my face.

Yes, if I was to do that, I would definitely, definitely choose the pool. For the longest time, I haven’t been to the beach because of my love for the freshness of the swimming pool.

Until the 9th of June, 2006.

I (along with 9 friends) went to Zambales. I almost didn’t go, though… But that’s another story altogether.


I (along with 9 friends) went to Crystal Beach, San Narciso, Zambales. The place was, to make an understatement, beautiful.

Yeah, sure, it wasn’t a white sand beach. Yeah, sure, it didn’t look like no five star place. Yeah, sure, it was no Boracay or Palawan, form what I’ve seen in the pictures. But, man oh man, it was GREAT.

The beach was ours and ours alone. No, it had nothing to do with the owner being our friend. I think it was mostly because it was already June, and summer was supposed to be gone. But, whatever the reason for the absence of people was, I was thankful for it. The sky was blue, the water was perfectly warm, the wind was just delicious, and the waves were AWESOME.

I probably said it once, but I’ll say it again: that weekend was perfect.

Well…OK. Maybe it’s a point less than perfect due to the fact that I injured my toe. Because of it, I didn’t get to surf on Saturday. Arrr.

Despite that, though, I enjoyed what I loved most about beaches: simply sitting there and letting the waves hyptnotise me.

Yes. When I sat down on the beach and let the tide roll in and tickle my toes, I decided that there’s no place I’d rather be than where I was sitting at that moment. The sun was shining, but, thankfully, it wasn’t scorching hot (maybe because it’s June already) so I enjoyed sitting on the beach for hours.

I suppose I thought about many things during my “session”… I suppose I realized a lot of things… I suppose I forgot about all those things, because, for the life of me, I could not remember a single thought. All I could remember was that I was relaxed, refreshed, and…


I remember looking at the horizon. I remember watching the surfers catch the wave. I even remember holding my friends’ valuables as they went out for the water. I remember sitting there and enjoying the feeling off the sand lightly scrubbing my ankles…

…the calm of it all.

Man, I’m suddenly in love with the beach all over again.

So, I speak to you, as a pool-loving girl. If you’re one who rarely goes to the beach, go and try to catch a wave sometime. It might — no, it will — do you good. And if you’re one who always goes to the beach for the sun, sand and parties, don’t take the beach for granted. Go and just sit. Be hypnotized.

It might — no, it will — do you good.

more pictures here.

Destination: Laguna

By popular demand…
Through much tears, fights, and sleepless nights…
After a time of depression, elation, exhaustion and procrastination…
With kicking, screaming, and mass hysteria…

Graduation day had finally come.

MY graduation day had finally come.

The presentation was a piece of cake, actually. Much easier than I expected, that’s for sure. My panel was the following:

My adviser
Another student presenting his SP
The other student’s adviser
My adviser’s roommate in the office (who’s actually playing dynomite while listening to us)

That’s it.

That’s freaking it!

I’m NOT complaining. Yes. Glad we have that cleared.

And, my gosh. It didn’t even take me five minutes, and we were done. (I can’t remember the details anymore, because it HAD been a few weeks ago already.)

And so, there I was, on the 29th of April 2006, ready to march down the aisle, go up the stage and get my (pseudo-)diploma.

Again, I won’t go into the details. Else, I’ll just start babbling, and I’ll probably never stop. I’ll just let the pictures tell the story.

Yey! Kuya JB, my Dad, me and my Mom being blown away by the wind in front of the dorm. (Buti na lang mahangin!)

The family amidst the graduating CMSC students.

But of course, where ever you put them, the Cada boys will still have fun.

OK… I went up on stage at around 6:30 p.m., I think. So it was too dark to take pictures from where Kuya JB was standing. I do have a picture, though, taken by the official photographer. I shall upload it after I scan it.

It’s teh graduate!!!

After the graduation, we rested in restful SEARCA dorm (the hotel pretending to be a dorm inside UPLB). Then we got up and went to one of my favorite places in the country, Rizal Recreation Center in Rizal, Laguna! YEY!

We did practically everything you could do in the Center. Thank goodness everything’s for free. We played all ’em games, we went attempted to go through the obstacle course many, many, MANY times, we went stargazing (“Ooooh! So many starzzzzz!”), fishing, swimming… and we basically did so many crazy things, it felt like we were there for a week when we were only there for a day.

God, I love that place.

The Cada kids in the treehouse. It’s a real treehouse in the strictest sense, I think.

FISHING! I caught the first fish. I caught it within just a minute after getting my fishing rod! Thank you, Grander Musashi!!! XD I caught three of ’em! Yey!

Photo op on a tree with Adrielle (in yellow shirt), Joni (in Blue shirt) and my sistah Chique (in yellow tank top).

Come to the Garden

After five months of postponing it every week, we finally finally went to Sonya’s Garden. And, man, oh, man it was AWESOME. Well…OK. Maybe awesome isn’t the best word to use… It’s quaint and pretty and relaxing and…very very very VERY nice place.

I shall elaborate.

I had mixed feedback about Sonya’s Garden. Some people said it was nice. Some people said, ‘puro damo naman ang kinakain dun!’ Some people said it was OK (not exactly impressive, but not awful, either). So instead of basing my expectations on what I heard, I went there not expecting anything. And I found that it was the right thing to do: every single thing about the place surprised and delighted me. Continue reading

the road to strawberry jam city

I was in Baguio on the weekend for my cousin’s wedding. But I didn’t really go there for a vacation… We didn’t take a city tour or anything. I didn’t even shop much. The most part of my stay there (aside from the wedding, of course) was just lying around in the hotel, relishing the cool air, and drinking good coffee at Starbucks, Seattle’s Best, and Gloria Jeans in the span of three hours.

Some might raise an eyebrow at me and say, “What?! You went to Baguio just to sleep and go to Starbucks?” What I’d do is raise an eyebrow right back at them. We all need a time to unwind. Sometimes, spending time in a hotel far, far away from work is a soothing getaway from our hectic life. We all need to just stop and smell the flowers, y’know?

The last time I went to Baguio (not counting last year when we had a convention) was when I was 10 years old. Since I was such a small kid, I bet I was asleep during the whole trip. That, or I was enjoying the zigzag road too much to pay attention to the beautiful flora and fauna of the mountainside. Goodness. On the way home, I was SO wishing it wasn’t a Sunday so I could annoy my dad to stop every few minutes so I could take pictures.

By the time we got to La Union, we stopped to have lunch (at 4 p.m.) in this place called S.O.U.L. Cafe. Man. Right now, I can call it one of the perfect places to eat good food, watch the clouds change shape, relax in cozy pillows, let time fly, and simply appreciate life. The place is so nice, I actually wanted to stay there forever. But, of course, my feet had to get pulled back to reality. I guess that’s what makes places like this so special. It makes you see how different the essence of life is from real life.

It’s funny… For years, I saw Baguio just as a place for buying starberry jam, broccoli, and walis tambo. It was just the home of ukay-ukay. For the longest time, I saw it as “the summer capital” SO packed with people that I’d probably prefer staying in our city (yeah, I was sour-graping). Sure, it was all that. But then, it was more than that.

It’s the whole trip.

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Chillin’ out at SOUL Cafe

Image hosted by Photobucket.comPhoto shoot! Harhar.

Image hosted by Photobucket.comOoooh…Coffee…

Image hosted by Photobucket.comKuya Tim taking it easy

Image hosted by Photobucket.comSit down to enjoy the food and the scenery

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Image hosted by Photobucket.comS.O.U.L. Cafe. Stop by and enjoy the spice of urban life.