The Awesome Things: 2016

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Ibiza, Spain | La Playa


Ibiza is an island in the Mediterranean, famed for its nightlife and parties by the beach.
A playground for people who want to escape and relax. They have parties suggesting people to be sensual and to give in to their desires.

It was a hot summer day at about 27 celcius and You can even see people both yound and old basking under the sun half-naked. Baring their boobies. 

I for one could never do that, I find it a bit awkward where everyone is welcome to stare at your body for free giving others the opportunity to take a picture of your body. For some reason, they seem to be pretty comfortable about that.

They don't seem to care even though some of them have wrinkly skin and bulging tummies. Lol. 
Maybe it's a culture thing. Oh well. To each person his own.





Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Kotor, Montenegro | The Medieval town




Montenegro in Italian means "black mountains, it is a Balkan country with rugged mountains and medieval villages. The Bay of Kotor, is likened to that of a fjord, dotted with coastal churches and fortified towns such as Kotor. Montenegro was once a part of Serbia until it declared Independence in 2006.

One of the old towns of Montenegro is Kotor, exquisitely beautiful with that medieval feel to it. Reminds me of knights and witches during the middle ages. It's as though time has stood still in this town. 

Honestly, I've never heard of Kotor before but the moment I laid my eyes on it, it was as if I was being transported to the "game of throne" world. The Star Wars movie was even shot here. 

Kotor is just a small town of only about 15,000 living permanently here but there are plenty of tourists, usually people traveling by cruise ships. 



We came here during the cooler seasons, the weather was so balmy and you can smell that subtle hint of the mountain trees. Absolutely beautiful.



The entrance to the old town sprawling with local shops and restaurants for that local food experience.


The scenic view from up the mountain, just a couple of minutes away by hike.



This view reminds me of the Norwegian fjords.

What a breathtaking view. Worth the hike plus it's a good exercise for the heart.



The Balkan mountains.





Thursday, December 1, 2016

Let's Travel to Tuscany | Eurotrip







 Pisa is often known to people as the home of the architectural project that has gone terribly wrong. The soft subsoil caused the tower to lean until it was stabilized in the 1990s. The Tuscan region is so beautiful with it's rolling landscapes and rich cultural history.

From the cruise port of Livorno, it will only take 20 minutes going to the Leaning tower of Pisa by car. Florence on the other hand is 2 hours away by car.

We chose to go to Pisa as it was nearer of course. Normally, it would cost a roundtrip taxi fare 180 Euros. Good thing we were able to coax the driver and we only paid 80 Euros!! There were 4 of us sharing the taxi. Lady luck seemed to be smiling at us that day. 

When we arrived at Pisa, the area was packed with tourists as well as local vendors. People of different nationalities were busy taking selfies and doing quirky poses with the tower. We were also among those people by the way. I noticed that there was a boy who was lying on the ground with his feet against the tower as though he's trying to stop it from leaning any further. That was quite amusing. We weren't able to go up to the tower though as there was a long line and they only take a number of people at a time to minimize additional weight on the tilting tower.



In front of the Piazza dei Miracolli 





There's not really a whole lot of activities going on around the area but their landscapes and architectures are really picture worthy. 

They have some really good food at the local stalls. I tried their burger and it was so good. They use fresh Italian tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese to give that Italian taste to it. It was so good for a 5 Euro burger. So so so good. They use very fresh ingredients. I really loved it. 

After exploring the area and taking a quick bite, me and my Indonesian trio started looking for manong taxi driver. Yes, he really waited for us to finish our tour so he can take us back to the port. We decided to just pay him when we get back as we were scared maybe he will leave us. As you know, we can never be too trusty with people especially when we  don't know anything about the local people and to add up to the trouble, we're not even from there. Just a tip on traveling to non-English speaking countries: a few acting and sign language skills will definitely come in handy. 

I really wish we had the opportunity to go to Florence though. It's such a lovely town. A favorite setting for movie makers and it's one of the world's great artistic centre that dates back to the Renaissance period. Italy has such lovely provinces. Among all the countries I've visited in Europe. Italy is by far the loveliest of them all and worthy of every Euro spent, but that is just my own limited opinion.










Monday, November 28, 2016

Take me to Santorini















Santorini is an island in Greece where it has 2 principal towns Oia and Fira. This beautiful island is famed for its perfect sunsets and is a favorite destination for weddings and honeymoons. I for one, would want to come back here again for my own honeymoon. This island also has some remains left from the ordeal of the 16th century volcanic eruption having small islands with black and red lava pebbles.

I have seen dozens of wedding photoshoots captured in Santorini with its pink skies and picturesque sunsets. It made me gush over it like crazy and I can never keep it off my mind. The idea of just going there amd seing all that beauty in person was definitely on my bucketliat. When I saw in another website Xiaxu's photoshoots wearing a white gown while riding a horse in its beaches. It was simply breathtaking and my mouth just dropped open on how beautiful it was. Everything just looked perfectly matched with Santorini's gorgeous caldera. We truly have such an artistic maker from above.

It also came as a blessing that I was given the opportunity to actually go to Santorini for a brief stay 
during the cruise. It was unfortunate though that the cruiseship left at 5pm and so left us no chance to catch the sunset. But it was enough that I was able to go there for free. 

From the cruise port, we had to go up the island using either a cable car or a donkey. The donkey ride was more expensive, smelly and it will take forever to get up there so we took the cable car which only costs 1 Euro. After 5 mins, we arrived and immediately saw the beautifully white painted houses with zen designs. I think the reason why they painted the houses white was so that the pink skies would reflect on it making the colors blend and complement one another. One of the thing that I hated that time was the heat and humidity. I think it's better  to visit during cooler months so you won't  feel dehydrated from walking around. 

The town that we went to was called Fira, Oia is just 30 minutes away by car and I'm told that they have even more romantic Sunset views. I wish the next time I visit Santorini it would be with my Prince Charming riding a white horse. Kidding. 







Thursday, October 20, 2016

Applying for a Korean Tourist Visa for Filipinos




I think it's every Korean drama fanatic's dream to go to South Korea. The land of K-pop, girls generation, and bibimbap!! South Korea has a very rich culture and even their language sounds so cute and amusing. I've been dreaming to go to Korea for 2 years now, I even studied hangul by myself through the internet so I won't have a hard time traveling around Korea. I've also had some free Korean lesson from www.talktomeinkorean.com. I've had all the requirements I needed, had sufficient amount for travel and all that. Although there was a minor glitch in my application as I left one question blank which is the part on which hotel I'm planning to stay in Korea. I haven't booked my plane tickets and hotel room yet because I Was afraid of getting denied and wasting all my money. The process to apply for the visa was easy, it was fast and efficient. Getting to the embassy from Malate was the challenge as it took me 2 hrs and a half to get there because of the traffic. 

My application was received by a frowning consul, in window no 2. She was pretty but she doesn't have life and she seems so bland and rude. I guess that's a bad sign. I thought I would go to window 3 for people with previous visas from Europe and America apparently they directed  me in window 2 which is weird.

They said they would release my passport after a week. After all those tedious and exhausting travel going to the embassy. Much to my dismay that my visa was denied. Maybe because the consul was just such a meany and not in the mood since a lot of people got denied as well. I don't know what I did wrong. Was it because I haven't booked my hotel and plane tickets yet? It was such a tiring and frustrating experience. I felt so dismayed because of the turnabout. I guess no Korea for now. *sad*





Climbing Mt. Hibok Hibok | defying limits















It was my very first Mountain Climb. Mt. Hibok Hibok is an active stratovolcano in the island of Camiguin, Philippines. It stands an elevation of 1,300 meters above sea level. We traveled from Cagayan de Oro City at dawn 5am, we rode a shuttle for 45 mins that took us to Balingoan Port. From there, we took the barge going to Camiguin. The barge was super slow, it took us an hour to get there even though it's really close by.

We literally began the climb at 8:30 am, had a brief warm up and off we go to the mountains. It was my first climb mind you, and I was really having a hard time catching my breath. I felt like my lungs were going to explode. Thank God we had a pit stop after every two hours. It  was really a challenge since my bag was so heavy and it's not really the right bag for mountaineering. Plus, I was carrying 2 liters of water on my back. Boy was that hard.

I guess one thing you will learn in mountaineering is to persevere and have the stamina to finish the climb no matter how hard it may take. Just like in life. 

We reached our campsite at around 4 pm. Pitched our tent and started to cook sinigang for dinner. Real food and I thought we were going to eat canned foods like evacuees. Our campsite was right at the mouth of the crater which exploded years ago. The crater was covered in grass now and some guava trees. Even though there are no signs that the volcano will erupt anytime soon, it's still really creepy to think that there are some lavas deep beneath the earth that you're sleeping.

We climbed the two summits the morning after and then we headed down the foot of the mountain. Going down was just as hard as going up. My toes and knees hurt so much that I can't feel it anymore. I woke up the next day with sore legs and had trouble walking. It was a really fun and challenging experience, not having to take a bath for 36 hours. You have no choice but to accept it and just enjoy the whole experience. My girl scouts skills were really put to use. Wlang arte. Chill lang.




Tuesday, October 18, 2016

How to get Driver's License in LTO Philippines




Requirements for Non-Professional License:

Medical (200 pesos just beside LTO )
Student Permit
Processing Fee


An expired student permit + another expiring student permit later, I finally mustered enough courage to get a driver's license. I decided that I have to conquer my fear of driving once and for all. I didn't want to learn to drive a few years back out of the fear of bumping other cars or people. God forbid. And I'm so scared of car accidents, so even if most of my batchmates have acquired their licenses, I didn't even bother, I said to myself that my father will drive for us anyway and there will always be tons of taxis but then again, driving is also an important skill. 

So there I was, sitting at the LTO Cdo processing my license. I got there at around 12nn. No noon breaks for them so it's ok. I waited for my name to be called to have my picture taken and to pay for my exam. Then the waiting game began... Before the exam, they gave us a reviewer. We waited for another 2 hours because their machine was heating up and we can't pass the validate our test results without that machine because that's the standard and they can't manually check it. After the exam, we then proceeded with the test drive. I rented out a car for 250 pesos while a motorcycle tental is at 100 pesos. Seems like they are really following the protocol now since they had a change of management under the Duterte administration. After waiting for 6 hours, I tasted sweet success. I finally have a license and I only spent around 800 pesos total. Now I can take my friends for a joy ride. Oh yeah.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Ceragem








My aunt kept telling me good reviews about Ceragem telling me about their state of the art hot beds and how many of her friends have been healed of gallbladder or kidney stone problems. I don't really have any of these diseases yet but I just wanted to try it anyway as it was FREE. Anyone can try their  healing beds which cost around 100,000 pesos at least. 

Plenty of lolas and lolos were there waiting for their tirn to try their beds, they actually go there almost everyday. Waiting for around an hour to 2 hours just to lay on the beds. Their technology is similar to that of nugabest. Also made in Korea, invented by a scientist whose intention at first was to heal her mother. Their beds had built in massage which radiates heat from jade gems. I guess this kind of technology is suitable for people who are in their 40s and up as plenty of diseases usually be revealed during that age range. You can give their massage beds a try at any Ceragem center.

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