A Boulder In My Path

Since I started this journal in October 2010, I have devoted myself to the act of moving forward, away from the past. I have been doing well, until a boulder appeared in my path.

Here is a constant reminder of what I have wanted to leave and forget. Now, I have to face it daily.

I find that in every obstacle, there is a way to get through it. I visualize inching my way on the side. I might get scratched, hurt a little in the process, but I will, bit by bit, get pass the boulder.

And continue on my clear path once again.


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Why I Love Staycations


The Philippines observes Holy Week for 3 days in April. This is the time when Filipinos flock to summer destinations outside the Metro for some r&r. Some 3 years ago I realized that going on holiday during this time is s-t-r-e-s-s-f-u-l.  Airports are packed, the roads are jammed, there are people everywhere.

This is when I discovered that Metro Manila is the perfect place to stay during Holy Week because it’s practically a ghost town. There are some establishments that remain open during these days, those catering to expats, usually bars and restaurants. The roads in the metro are empty, the sort which you only day-dream about when you are stuck in a 8am traffic on a Monday morning.

So when Holy Week comes I go on a staycation. I turn my stay at home into a vacation. How?

I make sure I have the kitchen stocked with food I’d like to eat, take time to prepare it like how a fancy hotel or resort would, have a good book, my stash of magazines, and Oprah in its final season.

I woke up the first day of my staycation to a nice, warm, wholewheat pancake topped with large fresh strawberries, more fresh fruits, yogurt, and the perfect cup of strong black coffee.

I had a plate of 4 varieties of cheese with wheat crackers as mid-morning snack. Then I baked salmon for lunch with grilled asparagus, zucchini and capsicum.

I finished my weeks-old store-bought baked nachos with salsa I made from scratch in the mid-afternoon.

Went to the gym around 5 for my kick-boxing class, followed by a 30-min run around Bonifacio Global City.

I’d say I’ve never been more relaxed. I’m thankful that I have a peaceful home to re-charge in.

I’m going to end this now here, I still have a bottle of champagne to enjoy!

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In Search of Vegetarian Restaurants in Manila

And no…indian cuisine not included.  There are hundreds of indian restaurants in Manila, but I don’t want the gooeey and lumpy sauce found in most, if not all, indian dishes. I have nothing against indian food, I actually like it on some occassion, but what I’m searching for is a vegetarian restaurant that serves light, healthy, natural food for people who do not eat beef, pork, chicken and seafood.

I am also impartial to veggie meat. I don’t see the point in eating something pretending to be meat. If I want this then I’d just eat meat.

So far, I’ve only been to 2, both in Makati.  The first which I absolutely love and rave about is Corner Tree Cafe along Jupiter st.. Quaint and serves all natural ingredients  – all veggies and tofu.  They have starters, salads, soups, entree, deserts and coffee.  My favorites – the tomato soup, north african vegetable stew, tofu walnut burger (but as a dinner plate with red rice), and tofu and aspparagus teriyaki. I have to try the rest but I keep coming back for the vegetable stew. I’ve invited meat-eating friends to this place and they loved it!

The 2nd is Wabi-Sabi noodle house in The Collective along Malugay St.  Hmmm…the only thing I liked here was the mushroom siomai.  I had the pho that had some veggie meat or cracklings as they call it which didnt sit well with me.  The broth — well, I’ve had much better. Nothing against the place, just not a place I’d invite friends to.

Post your recommendations please with complete address and phone number too just in case I need to ask for directions.  Also, would it be difficult if you limit your suggestions to places within Makati and Ortigas please?  Thank you! Happy eating!

P.S. You may post veggie recipes too, that I can do at home! Thanks again!

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1st Quarter Report

It has been so long since my last entry.

The start of the year was crazy. I mean crazy busy, it was a riot – in my schedule, in my mind – whew, I’m glad that’s over.  For now.

So I am savouring the manageable days, schedules, and to-do lists.  I am savouring the fact that I can leave the office at 530PM. I am savouring the days when I don’t have 4 meetings in a day.  I love what I do, but sometimes, it gets out of control.  They say, when you love something or someone, you love not just the good bits, but also the bad ones. Those I mentioned were the bad ones.  Hmmm, I don’t think it’s also good that I spoke about love and work in one breath.

Speaking of love, Valentines passed by without any frills for me.  Sometimes, I feel I have forgotten how love feels, what love is or how it is to be in love.  I need to believe in love again.  Till that time comes, I will keep on going with my life – with all the good and the not so loveable.

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Creating New Memories

 I ushered in the New Year in what most people say is one of the best beaches in the world — our very own Boracay island.  

The island was festive, people greeted and smiled at each other as if they’ve been friends for a lifetime. It felt like everybody knew everybody, which I loved. People danced on the beach like there was no tomorrow.

I always choose to get out of Manila during New Year’s. I don’t like those loud firecrackers that sound like a bomb just exploded, not to mention the pollution it brings. You literally end up with soot on your face.

We had 5 fun-filled days on the island. Inspite the occasional drizzle, it was a memorable beginning of the new year.

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End Of An Era

Change is inevitable.   People change, circumstances change.  Change is said to be the only thing constant in life.

What we have done in the past – our routine, our cycle, our habit – will eventually come to an end.  It may be that we have outgrown it, or would like to move on to something new and better.

Whatever reason it is, all we can do is accept the change and move along with it.   And believe that things will turn out better than we hoped it to be.

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Have You Done Something with Complete Abandon?

What have you done without utterly thinking, no logic, no analysis, no thinking of what people might say, think or feel about you, or better yet, without YOUR judgement on yourself.

 N o thinking if it’s right or wrong,  no editing yourself.  Just pure emotion, gut feel, in the moment.  Wild abandon.

Mine?  The usual —  love,  dancing like nobody’s watching, getting my tattoo, quitting a job and going sabbatical for a year, just for the heck of it.  I spent half a year in Los Angeles doing absolutely nothing. It was heaven.  I drove to the beach, to friends’ house, to the mall —  all with a google map, and without a license.  Just thought my being a tourist would be valid enough.

 I even drove 45 minutes to Disneyland to spend the entire day there.  I would spend my days driving my nephew and niece to their soccer practice or piano lessons.  Or I’d walk to the nearby park, lay a blanket under a tree, read a book, have a little something to eat, and take a nap!  It was so different from my life in Manila.  It was so simple. No fuss, no stress.

Have you thrown caution to the wind? What did you just throw yourself in irrationally?


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