1/22/16 Hello, world

I haven’t blogged for more than half a year. What’s up with that? I don’t have any other excuse this time, I’m just a lazy person. I haven’t finished my Sagada entries and here I am planning to go back there. If you’re interested in what I’m up to, here it goes:

  • I have a new job – with great bosses and awesome teammates
  • My parents are proud of me even more
  • I’m busy losing weight thanks to my meds…I’m sick, so don’t judge.
  • I’m planning for my birthday trip
  • I’m baking again. I might start selling again, for  my travel funds.
  • I’ve gone to both the mountains and sea within one month. Quite a feat for me as I’m either too lazy or too poor to travel.
  • I’m praying to GOD for “THE ONE”
  • I’ve become a Belieber thanks to JB’s new album
  • I’m part of a committee for our family reunion and elementary/high school reunion. I don’t know what to do! I swear I feel like a headless chicken running around not knowing what to do.
  • I’m currently addicted to Neko Atsume. Yes, it’s the cat game!
  • Trying to make my faith stronger. As religious as I am, I feel like it’s not enough.
  • Trying (take note of the keyword trying) to save, but I’m obviously failing due to next two reasons.
  • I’m currently into shopping and I’m starting to enjoy dressing up. I’ve passed by my jeans and shirt phase, but of course, there are still those days.
  • I’ve been going out more. Hello, social life!
  • I’m still busy trying to figure out what will happen to me.

I guess that’s it. I am hoping that I could update this weekend and share photos of my recent trips, but let’s not expect. 🙂

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Things to remember

As we grow up, we learn that even the one person that wasn’t supposed to ever let us down, probably will. You’ll have your heart broken and you’ll break others’ hearts. You’ll fight with your best friend or maybe even fall in love with them, and you’ll cry because time is flying by. So take too many pictures, laugh too much, forgive freely, and love like you’ve never been hurt.

Life comes with no guarantees, no time outs, no second chances. you just have to live life to the fullest, tell someone what they mean to you and tell someone off, speak out, dance in the pouring rain, hold someone’s hand, comfort a friend, fall asleep watching the sun come up, stay up late, be a flirt, and smile until your face hurts.

Don’t be afraid to take chances or fall in love and most of all, live in the moment because every second you spend angry or upset is a second of happiness you can never get back.

Sagada (Day 1 – afternoon)

After lunch, we rode another jeep to Bumod-ok Falls. The jeepney ride was less than 10 minutes. We were dropped off at the information center (?) where several guides were waiting for us. We were then divided into 4 groups (8 persons per group) so that it will be easier for us to trek to Bumod-ok.

On the first part of the trek, everyone was still energetic, we were still talking, and we were very excited to swim on the falls.

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

I think, everyone was very confident that we’d easily reach the falls in no time. It’s just trekking, what could go wrong, right? The scenic views would keep us entertained and there were tons of people whom we can chat with or take pictures with when we’re bored.

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Since everyone was taking pictures here, I decided to also have my picture taken. Haha *peer pressure*

Sgd, Mt. Province

Halfway during the trek, everyone was already exhausted and kept asking our guide whether we’re already near. Think of a child asking his parents, “Are we there yet?” millions of times. Our guide was very patient and she joked that we’re already 1/4 of the first half of the trekking. Not something we wanted to hear.

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

I think, this was already halfway during the trek. The first two groups have left us already and were almost near the falls. We decided to stop for a while to rest. The excitement and anticipation decreased slowly, exhaustion was taking over.

Once in a while, we passed by groups who already went to the falls. Everyone was wet, exhausted, and panting. Half of them told us, “Good luck.” Is that a warning for us, I thought. Oh well!

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

It’s not everyday that you get to be on the rice terraces, so every time there’s an opportunity to take pictures, we immediately bring out our cameras and take pictures of everything and everyone. At least we were not sweaty during the trek, thanks to the cool weather of Sagada, but we look exhausted! 🙂

When we were already near the falls, it started to drizzle, so I think everyone didn’t want to take pictures anymore at the bridge. We just wanted to get to the falls, ASAP!

After 2 hours (or even more) of trekking, we finally reached Bumod-ok falls. A lot of people were already there.

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

My gosh, I look like sh*t!

Bumod-Ok Falls, Sagada
Photo credit: Ihris Crisostomo
Bumod-Ok Falls, Sagada
Photo credit: Ihris Crisostomo

The water was freezing! Then it started raining hard. We wanted to swim under the falls, but the water was very deep going there and we were already freezing, so we decided to abandon the idea.

I think we only stayed there for 20 minutes. It started to rain harder and there were more and more people coming to the falls.

On our way back, someone had cramps and we had to wait for him in the middle of rain. So romantic! Haha

The trek back was harder as it was muddy and slippery. I fell onto the rice paddies, TWICE! Thankfully, it has been just my feet and I didn’t kiss the ground. But you know what I was worried to the most? Breaking my dad’s slippers! Hahaha

Halfway, the rain stopped and we had to wait for several people. While waiting, I realized that I was thirsty. I never drank a single drop of water during our entire trek, so I immediately bought water. It was expensive. 😦

After waiting for 10 minutes, our guide decided to merge us to another group as she will find the others who were left behind. We took a different path.

Sgd, Mt. Province

When we saw this falls, one person said, “May falls naman pala dito, dapat dito na lang tao nag-swimming!” (There’s a falls here, we should have just swam here!) Haha I kind of agreed with her statement.

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Rainbow! Rainbows are a lucky charm. Everyone stopped walking when we saw the rainbow. Click here, click there. Rainbows are a very rare sight in the metro, so everyone was just excited as I was when we saw it.

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

Sgd, Mt. Province

The cloud and Earth kissing. So breathtaking to see this in person. There’s something about this view that overwhelmed me; I almost cried!

Sgd, Mt. Province

Despite our exhaustion, everyone was still game to take a group picture. We were the first ones who reached the top, so you can say that this is a celebratory photo.

When we got to our hostel, I immediately took a bath. There was no hot shower, but I didn’t care. I just wanted to take a shower. Me and Cris, then decided to have dinner. I forgot where, but we chose it because it was the only restaurant still accepting customers.  Haha The food was great and the serving was HUGE!

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After dinner, we walked around because we were full, but we ended up getting sweets from Sagada Brew. T-T

Despite being full, we slept early, because we had to wake up at 3 am to see the sunrise at Kiltepan.

Banaue

Sagada (Day 0-1/2)

Last April, I impulsively joined Travel Factor’s Conquer Sagada trip.

I just wanted to go somewhere to “de-stress.” Honestly, I’m not sure why I chose to go to Sagada; maybe it was because of the movie “That Thing Called Tadhana” or maybe it was because it was too damn hot in Manila and I wanted to experience a cooler weather. *shrugs*

April 30, 2015

Rode a bus (Ohayami) for almost 10 hours to Banaue.

It was an exhausting ride. A fellow solo traveler, Cris, and I  both agreed that the ride was VERY uncomfortable because of the seat. It made our butt and back sore, so neither of us slept well during the whole trip.

May 1, 2015

Got to Banaue at around 8 am (I think) and had breakfast at Hidden Valley Restaurant. Nothing special about the breakfast, it was just the typical Filipino breakfast you see in any other restaurants.

After breakfast, we were divided into 3 groups and rode a jeep going to Sagada.

I couldn’t let this chance pass, so I rode on top of the jeep with Cris, Ralf (another solo traveler), and 5 others including our coordinator, Ihris.

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The view was magnificent from the top of the jeep. It wasn’t safe, but it was better than straining your neck from the inside. It wasn’t that hot, so it was not a big deal.

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We drove past mountains after mountains after mountains. Yep, you’ll be overwhelmed! If you love nature, I’m sure you’ll enjoy this trip.

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Taking pictures while making sure that I did not fall down from the jeep was exhausting. Hahaha

There were bajillions of people going to Sagada at that time as it was a Labor Day weekend.

Sgd, Mt. Province

Stopover! Before we continued to Mountain Province.

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Sgd, Mt. Province

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Forgive my face, I was too excited to care. 🙂

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From Banaue, we had to travel for 3 hours to Sagada. Stopover was like the half of the trip already, so we still had to travel 1.5 hours.

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For some weird reason, this house reminded me of Tardis in Doctor Who. I know it’s not blue, I don’t know why it’s the first thing that popped into my mind when I saw this house.

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Killing pigs on the national road, only in the Philippines!

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Bontoc Town Proper (?)

Before we entered Bontoc town proper, we had to go down and stay inside the jeep as it was prohibited to “top load.”

While most of the people were sleeping, I was sight-seeing, even it was straining my neck. The road was long and winding (no pun intended) and when we got to Sagada it was already a little past lunch.

Will post another entry for the afternoon trekking as this post will be super long if I still included that part here. Don’t want this to be long and photo heavy. 🙂

Letting go and moving on

In  two days, I’ll be leaving a place I’ve called home for more than a year, DataBlitz. Leaving is bittersweet. A part of me is excited to finally have legit weekends-two days of just being lazy, baking or going somewhere. I’m excited to meet new people, to do new-old work, and for the change. As excited as I am, another part of me is sad and scared. Sad that I’m leaving the people that have become family and close friends. I’ll never get to see these people who have always supported and encouraged me whenever life went overwhelmingly crazy. There were also people who drove me a little out of my comfort zone, tested my patience, brought out my sassiness, and some that made my eyes sweat. They’ve become a huge part of me that I’m scared to let them go, like the teddy bear you used to hold at night when you were a kid. I’m scared. Scared if I’ll meet people like them, people who will help me become a much better person and people who will encourage and help me when things get crazy.

I’m scared of the change. I’ve been way too comfortable being here, that it’s scary to leave. It’s a bit depressing how I’m back to zero and I need to work my way up the ladder again, but the challenge excites me. My patience, determination, and willingness to learn will once again be challenged.

I’ll miss the routine, I’ll miss doing things that brought me way out of my comfort zone, and I’ll miss hurting myself with cutter because of plain stupidity. But I will not miss 6-day work, I will not miss scolding people, I will not miss being followed up for our membership program, and I will not miss rushing everything. I do not hate nor regret working here, instead I’m grateful. Grateful that this work has challenged me, it has brought me out of my comfort zone and met people that have humbled me and made me view things differently. I’m also grateful for this work as it has helped me be more appreciative of what I have.

There were not-so-nice things that happened, but there were more events that are worth remembering.

As I’ve said earlier, I’m grateful for every experience I’ve had in DataBlitz. It has toughened me up, made me more in touch with “reality” and it helped me realize and appreciate even the smallest things.

It was a crazy ride and it’s time for me to get off this rollercoaster.

Adios, DB!

Something dramatic that I needed to get out of my system

I think I’ve already said this before, but I am really thankful for my friends. They’re the reason that I’m still sane, despite all the shit I am going and have gone through. They’re the reason that I can still laugh during the darkest days of my life. They’re also one of the biggest reasons, why I am the person I am today, besides my family.

I’ll forever be thankful to them for the love, support, trust, and advice they’ve given.

This is such a dramatic post, I don’t know why I wrote. Haha but I really am thankful to my friends. ❤

Thank you, guys and gals! You know who you are. Kiss kiss, hug hug. 🙂

Random thoughts

Why work hard for something you wouldn’t inherit and benefit from in the future? Isn’t that pointless? Dedicating your whole life to something that you would leave behind when your old and gray. Then you realize how much time you’ve wasted on something you barely care about, instead of doing something that would make your life more worth it.

Weekends

I work six days a week and I couldn’t be more thankful to have Sunday as a day off. Since I have started working in my current job, I started to appreciate and make my Sundays more productive. Sunday means spending time with the family, cooking lunch and/or dinner for my brother who’s a picky eater, baking whatever I can bake and going to Church.

Meals during Sundays are the best, as this is the only time I can eat lunch and dinner with family, share stories, and for my brother to tease me non-stop. Another thing I like about it is when my brother compliments the food I cook. Hehe

Earlier, I cooked sweet and sour pork. I was trying really hard to imitate how my Nanang  (Grandma) cooks it because this is not your typical Chinese resto sweet and sour. It’s actually pretty simple, but it’s still a hit or miss for me. My brother decided to taste it and ask if it was cooked just like how Nanang does it, I answered yes, but I was personally a bit doubtful. Haha well, apparently it reminded him of our childhood because he said was good! YEY!

In between eating, we usually just lounge at the living area, talk, surf the net and watch Gold Rush. Yes, it’s the show produced by Discovery Channel, where they mine gold in Yukon, Alaska. Dad’s a big fan and rubbing off on me. Seriously, I feel sh*tty whenever I see Parker Schnabel, earning hundreds of thousands of dollar. What the heck am I doing with my life?!

Oh yeah, I bake. Earlier, I baked a really yummy rainbow chip cupcakes. It was given a thumbs up by my brother.

Rainbow Chip Cupcake

Reminds me of Valentine’s day with all the reds!

My weekends have become more productive and I’ve become more domesticated; I don’t know if I should be happy about the domestication. Haha

I don’t know why I decided to blog today, maybe because I have so much to say or I’m just pretty bored. I’m planning to blog everything interesting that has happened over the past few weeks, just so the I can get out of my system. Haha

Anyway, enjoy the remaining hours of the weekend, because tomorrow, it’s back to the daily grind! 🙂

New Year, new hope

And another year has ended. 2014 has been such a bittersweet year for me. It made me feel emotions that I thought I never had. This is cliché, but I learned a lot in 2014. Realizations and certain situations humbled me lot during that year and it has helped me realize what my passion/talent is.

“This year, will be my year!”

I’ve read that statement a hundred times already in my social media timeline. As much as I want to claim it my year, I’ve realized that it never works that way, unless you take action. Same as with making a long list of New Year’s resolution. Last year, I posted that statement, but never did it become my year. Instead of claiming it, this year, I’m taking action. I guess, a couple of days off from the daily grind has helped me (a bit) to re-evaluate my life, decide on what I want, and what I should be doing with my life. Although it will still take me tons of effort to achieve what I want, I’m willing to take a gamble and see the results.

2015 just like any other year will present tons of opportunities and set backs. And, this year presents an opportunity for me to learn from experiences and keep on improving myself. It’s a scary year for me as I would be entering the quarter life, but I guess I’m ready to take on that challenge, as I have been already able to overcome one of the hardest trials in my life last year. I will never forget what 2014 has taught me.

I sincerely hope that 2015 would be life-changing, mind-blowing, spectacular, fascinating, magnificent, blessed, extraordinary, purposeful and incredible not only for me, but also for everyone else! 🙂

“Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.”

― Oprah Winfrey