All time low (well, almost)

A mix of good and bad things happen to us on a daily basis, but some days are just so shit that nothing ever goes as you intend them to.

I had one of them two Saturdays ago.

It started out pretty idyllic. I had a late night foodtripping at Ortigas with some friends, so I wasn't really in the mood for anything strenuous (yes, even if it was a Saturday). So I decided to get a massage at a certain spa.

However, I was so lazy and kept putting off leaving that it was 3pm by the time I left. And since I live out in the sticks, I had to ride an fx taxi out of my area just to get a proper cab.

Strike 1
When the fx driver didn't go through the usual route, I had to get off immediately before I end up even more out of the way. Walking towards the sidewalk, I got sideswiped by a mad motorcycle, which I pushed away from me. Darn these assholes, speeding in narrow streets! Good thing I was alert enough, otherwise he could've ran me down, the stupid idiot.

Thankfully, I only had a few bruises and a scratch to show for it, but still!

Strike 2
When I arrived at the spa, the receptionist tells me I have to wait at least 3 hours for a session. Yeah, I forgot to book an appointment.

Strike 3
So I decided to just hang about, get a coffee and write for a bit. I was concentrating on my notebook when the old man from the next table starting chatting me up. He told me about moving house, his daughters, etc. I was just being polite and nodding or commenting on the right moments. Then he tells me --

Your face is pretty, but you have dark skin.

What the heck, gramps?! Are you kidding me???  I didn't know if that was a backhanded compliment or a sincere one. I didn't realise that not being fair-skinned was a disadvantage! I just let him say a few more things and then told him I had to go somewhere else. After that strange comment, the conversation was over, as far as I was concerned.

Strike 4
After getting myself a copy of Beat the Bitch (I was so ashamed about getting this that I had to hold it face down until I reached the cashier) from a nearby bookstore, I decided to try the mini-spas in another mall to see if I could get a massage from there. After asking 3 various places, I gave up. All of them wanted me to wait for at least an hour. That teaches me not to call in for a booking, but that's also the final strike for the day. Might as well go home and read my embarrassing book!

Bookmark Digg Bookmark Bookmark Facebook Bookmark Reddit Bookmark StumbleUpon Bookmark Yahoo Bookmark Google Bookmark Technorati Bookmark Twitter

Manly Beach, Sydney (Are you man enough for it?)

When I thought of Sydney before my trip, I've always thought that there was only one beach there. How wrong was I??? Very!

With the limited amount of time I have, however, I can only manage to go to one. I dunno if it has anything to do with me looking for males, but I ended up going to Manly Beach. The name alone puts a huge smile on my face. Hehe!

You catch a ferry to go to Manly Beach and the ferry drops you off at Manly Wharf.

You just follow everybody on the way out of the ferry, as you're all probably going the same way anyway. Follow the 'gulls, I suppose, if you don't wanna be a lemming.

For someone who loves the beach so much, I can't swim and have ALWAYS been afraid to learn.

But I'm more than happy to just sit on the steps, sand and just breathe the whole atmosphere in and stare at the naked bodies out onto the sea.

Interesting, the things you see at the beach.

Tried dipping my feet onto the water eventually, though. It was freezinggggg!

I'll leave the surfing to the experts, then.

Bookmark Digg Bookmark Bookmark Facebook Bookmark Reddit Bookmark StumbleUpon Bookmark Yahoo Bookmark Google Bookmark Technorati Bookmark Twitter

Time to tighten that bloody belt

Thank goodness the holidays are done and dusted! Yes, the season is all lovey-dovey, happy and festive, but all that sentimentality comes with a colossal price – a large, gaping hole in your wallet. If you didn’t feel that money pinch over that period it is because of one, two or all of the following:

1. You have no money to begin with.
2. Nobody gives a rat’s ass about you.
3. You don’t give a rat’s ass about anybody else.
4. You are not human.

Okay, that list was an exaggeration.

The point is, if you are like the rest of us in society, the several weeks after the holidays are over are crucial to our budget. The first quarter of the year is usually reserved for keeping expenditures to a minimum, allowing us to make up for all the money spent for gifts and parties, in order for us to get ready for another season of spending – the summer holidays.

I heard you. It’s a vicious cycle.

To save money, we usually cut back spending on luxury items, buy things on sale, look for good shopping deals, use coupons at, cancel some unnecessary subscriptions, etc.

What do I do to save? I cut back on my “entertainment” spending (i.e. expensive dinners, spa trips, etc.) and stay at home most of the week. Books are friends.

Bookmark Digg Bookmark Bookmark Facebook Bookmark Reddit Bookmark StumbleUpon Bookmark Yahoo Bookmark Google Bookmark Technorati Bookmark Twitter

Hyde Park (the Sydney one, not the London one)

One could really get confused, huh? Wonder what'd happen if there is a Hyde Park in every capital city in the world? That's a question for you, Mr Stephen Hawking! Hah!

I really picked a darn good hotel this time... those sleepless nights trawling the internetz weren't for naught(I'd been reading Pride & Prejudice -- ridiculously difficult to read)! I booked myself for four nights at the Castlereagh Hotel, which is a few steps away from Park St, which leads you to (you guessed it) Sydney Hyde Park. With the park just a couple of blocks away from me, I couldn't have been happier!

You can see people just lounge around on the grassy knolls all over the grounds. It's so relaxing to see people making the most of this place. Unfortunately, I only realised just now, looking at my photos, that I hadn't taken a photo of the grounds -- I mostly did portraits! I can be such an idiot sometimes.

It's time to test my framing skillz.

I absolutely love placing the sun behind structures! The halo effect it makes just makes me smile from ear to ear.

Park entrance from Elizabeth Street.

Going into this avenue of trees from Park St can feel magical. I've sat on benches a couple of times, just watching people pass by (can be good for ogling hot guys). Hehe!

This same walkway will lead you to a majestic fountain.

Called the Archimedes Fountain.

It's cool to hang around it when the sun isn't too hot.

Having studied at UST, the fountain kind of reminds of the Benavidez statue ("doon ka sa Recto").

Folks, THIS is how you subdue a darn minotaur!!! Rawrrrrrrr!

Elizabeth St & Sydney Tower view from Hyde Park.

Err... some kind of monument (TLDR -- too long, didn't read).

Feels European.

Errrmmm... birdie.

Park St runs through the middle of Hyde Park, so crossing the street will give you more park grounds and the "Pool of Reflection." I didn't have time to make any reflections during this shot, though.

Plus, you also see the ANZAC War Memorial.

Slice of life. After a whole afternoon's walk around the park, I had coffee at a Starbucks (sooo typical) and just watched how people in Sydney behave during the afternoon rush hour. It feels like any other city, but having the park across the street is rather cooooool.

Bookmark Digg Bookmark Bookmark Facebook Bookmark Reddit Bookmark StumbleUpon Bookmark Yahoo Bookmark Google Bookmark Technorati Bookmark Twitter

It's cliche, but let's set some goals here.

Of course it's redundant -- New Year, new start, new goals, new failures and new achievements. It's what January is all about, my friend!

I've decided to jump into the resolution bandwagon and made a list of what I want to do this year. However, it has none of those eating healthier, losing weight, getting fit, being nicer or earning more money. My list is relatively easier to do and a bit more realistic.

Here are the 11 things I want to achieve this year --

1. Sort my wardrobe out.
I swear, snakes could be living in it and I would be none the wiser. HOWEVER, I've started doing this yesterday, so it's well on it's way to getting ticked off.


AFTER (well, halfway after)

2. Read, watch and listen more.
I want to make more time to finish books, movies and to discover new music. Doing these things help you grow as an individual (plus, it makes you more interesting).

3. Take more photos.
Remember I had just bought my Nikon a couple of months ago? Well, I guess I'm not entirely satisfied because I bought an Eximus film camera last week --

I've started my own Project 360 -- you know, that thing where you take photos everyday for a year? For a change, though, I originally wanted to use my Polaroid. It will turn out to be too expensive, so I opted for a slide film camera instead. I wanted to stick my photos into a notebook, complete with thoughts for the day, and be able to look back on it at the end of the year by just leafing through paper pages and not on my computer. I'm so touchy-feely.

4. Write more.
Sometimes I think I write about myself too much. But I'd rather leave traces of myself wherever I could, because those moments will be gone forever, anyway. Might as well jot those nagging thoughts down.

5. Something different happens everyday.
Routine can kill your imagination. Even if you wake up, get dressed, go to work and come home on a daily basis, there's always something different to be appreciated in between those times. I want to notice them and be grateful for them.

6. Shy away from being shy.
I'm painfully shy. Whodathunkit?!? I want to at least overcome this a little bit. It's part of having courage.

7. Find a magic place in the city
Whenever I'm feeling down, a trip to the seaside always does me good. But living in Manila, beaches are not exactly easy to get to. I don't want to count MOA -- there's just too many people! So maybe there's somewhere else I can go to get some peace and inspiration, and I intend to find it.

8. Address my altaphobia.
I am terrified of heights, as evidenced  by this event.  I want to challenge myself and this is one way of doing that. But no, Helena, I won't be skydiving just yet. No siree! That's just a bit much. Hahaha

9. Learn to swim.
I fail this every year and it will continue to be on my list until I drag my ass down to a swim school to do it. Sheesh.

10. Advocacy.
I thought it's about time I gave back to the community, but I'm still working out how to do it and if I want to join an organisation for it.

11. More "thank you's," less "it's ok's," "I'll be alright's" and "don't worry about it's."
We should all remember that we deserve all the good things that come our way and that we shouldn't settle for hacks.

Bookmark Digg Bookmark Bookmark Facebook Bookmark Reddit Bookmark StumbleUpon Bookmark Yahoo Bookmark Google Bookmark Technorati Bookmark Twitter

Pretending to be singers

When I was small (I still am, but that’s beside the point), machines for karaoke used to be these giant things – like around two feet high! Kids nowadays would not have been able to imagine it. They were big boxes with large built-in speakers and two tape decks. Yes, I mean cassette tapes. It’s just unthinkable now, innit?

A karaoke machine at the time was just a big boom box that played specially-made tapes of songs recorded without the vocals. Minus-One tapes, they used to be called. How do you know the words to sing with the songs, though, if they weren’t displayed on the screen (they couldn’t be hooked up to the tv because there’s no video!)? You read them from the cassette insert! It was certainly very inconvenient, trying to belt songs to karaoke and leafing through the lyrics at the same time – but it seemed fun, I think. I just watched the adults do it then.

I guess too many people think they can be good singers if they kept practicing, so karaoke machines took off. They have gone digital through video CD’s and then on to the actual videoke machines and microphones that we’re familiar with today. I have a penchant for things that trigger nostalgia, like the rotary phone, Polaroids and VHS tapes, but I certainly do not miss those humongous karaoke machines of the 80’s. 

Bookmark Digg Bookmark Bookmark Facebook Bookmark Reddit Bookmark StumbleUpon Bookmark Yahoo Bookmark Google Bookmark Technorati Bookmark Twitter

Have you gone deaf & cleaned your nose?

Anyway! Hangover or not... myspace graphic comments

See you on the other side!

Bookmark Digg Bookmark Bookmark Facebook Bookmark Reddit Bookmark StumbleUpon Bookmark Yahoo Bookmark Google Bookmark Technorati Bookmark Twitter
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...