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Monday, August 25, 2014

Photo Shoot for the Contestants

About two weeks ago, I was invited to shoot for Mr. and Ms CASAP (College of Arts and Science in Asia Pacific) in Taytay, Rizal, in preparation for the Araw ng Wika slated on August 27 and 28, 2014.

So far these are among my favorite contestants for Ms. CASAP.

Friday, August 15, 2014

What's My Next Travel Plan

I became passive to travel after my Calayan Island getaway last May.  The fact was, it's hard to go out of town when it is rainy season.  It's now August and next month was a "her" month something that we could hear the spirit of Christmas.  Traveling is quite costly especially when you have no sponsor and in my case I get this from my own pocket.  It's hard to get a sponsor though but in my case, this is my personal blog and it's not that easy to get a financier for my travel blog.

I was thinking about my next trip.  Maybe if I have some extras I want to go to Mindanao.  It's time for thinking my business to spur my next travel plan.  I want to go back to New York and make a blog about some foods, and to the key cities in Europe.  I guess I want some changes. Let's see.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Making A Perfume

Recently, I made a decision to make my own perfume brand. It's called "Scent of the Gods",  This idea came because we are to believe that we are all gods.  That made me think to create my own brand and hopefully more ideas will come as soon as I get into this field.

It is easy to make some perfumes as long as you have already the ingredients which can be bought through the factory.  I first studied it through Google.  Eventually I found out where to get these ingredients.  You need to have some fragrance oils, ethanol, DPG, fixative and distilled water as the main ingredients of the perfume. It can be done as DIY or Do It Yourself in less than an hour.  You only need initiative to make some mixes of the scents.

I love making perfumes because of the smell of the fragrances.

Friday, July 11, 2014

What Now

Traveling is costly and I suppose there are some lean seasons when it comes to going places.  It's been almost 2 months now since the last time I've tripped to a place.  Calayan Island was the last travel I had.  I was just thinking of the budget to spend too, one of the reasons why I had to stop traveling for a while. And one more thing, it is rainy season and we know that since it is wet, rains may ruin your chance to visit some good spots while traveling.

I was thinking of doing a blog for foods, which I seldom do, research more about some of the restaurants that offer unique foods.

At this time, fragrances are my pure concentration.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

My Thought About Forgiveness

We are humans capable of doing mistakes, and these words have been heard a couple a lot from our peers and the people around us.  And this is due to the error that one has made and this is why  rationalization takes place.  Everything that happen to us, good or bad, we pick up some lessons.  And these lessons come from the people of maybe who stayed with us whether for a short period of time or for life.  Every experience we learn from our mistakes is an opportunity to grow and people may have hurt us, maybe a couple of times.

If our friends or loved ones who did something wrong,  sometimes it leaves a scar in our heart.  That scar with the gravity of hurt you have felt takes time to heal the wounds.

Forgiveness does not happen overnight.  And sometimes we have to let the time heal the wound.  And the wound heals itself when time flies. And as you go along with your life you may be ready to face the reality that you have indeed forgiven.  I can't really say that I forgive you immediately.  Every experience is unique, every journey is different and every person have some degrees when it's time to forgive.

Remember, forgiveness is a state when you know that your heart is willing to be at peace in due time.  Time is worth waiting.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Street Photography: Intramuros Manila

Here are some of the photos I have taken during the street photography yesterday with some of the photo enthusiasts.  I was fun to be with some of the photographers.  Although it's quite exhausting, you'll begin to appreciate it the moment you get to be with the photographers doing a photo walk.  The photo walk started from Bayleaf Hotel at 2 p.m. at Intramuros and ended at Fort Santiago.

Friday, June 13, 2014

On Assignment: Exploring Some Parts of Southern California

At last I was able to submit my photo narrative entry for KLM On Assignment.  My entry was about my experience in walking while in Southern California.  During my six-month stay in California, I have walked a lot to have some glimpse of the moments and capture it with my camera, and collectively I have made more than a hundred miles in walking alone. It wasn't an easy experience, there was always some challenges while walking along the roads.  As I walk, I always have my heavy bag on my shoulder where inside is my camera and laptop.  I have sum up all my experiences and the photos I have taken during my walks in some parts of California.  It paid off though.

I had a hard time choosing and editing my photos prior from the submission I have made to On Assignment website.  First, my laptop shut down automatically and I brought my laptop for 4 times in the technician and with that I never knew if it would be fixed totally since I have all the photos in the hard drive of my computer.  It got overheat, the first time the technician diagnose it. Then it followed with different works that I finally brought my laptop to Gilmore and when it got fixed, then it still shut down.  So I brought it back hoping it will be fixed.  Finally they got it fixed and was able to submit my photos to the On Assignment website.

So here's the link of my entry:

Exploring Some Parts of Southern California

Friday, June 6, 2014

A Guide When Getting to Calayan Island

Calayan Island is a municipality in the province of Cagayan Valley.  It is located in the South China Sea in Luzon Strait.  It is one of the major islands of the Babuyan Islands.

I left Cubao on May 15 with Victory Liner via Tuguegarao.  The following day, I took the van at 5 a.m. to Claveria.  It was a 4-hour travel time to Claveria. 

Some lampitaw that docks in the shore of Calayan Island.
St. Bartholomew Church in Poblacion, Calayan

I had a 4-day, 3-night stay in Calayan Island.  Among the tourist destination of Calayan, one of the most visited spot is Sibang Beach, and you can never miss this one as this is the major attraction of the said island.

Getting to Calayan via Lampitaw Boat Ride via Claveria:

If you are in Claveria you can catch up the lampitaw boat at 6 a.m.  One location is in the main town where you can ride a tricycle and the other is at Taggat Lagoon.  In my case, my contact person Tessie reserved me to M/B Jason which docks to Taggat Lagoon.  The fee to ride the lampitaw will cost you 500 pesos.  There are no chairs when you ride lampitaw and no cover to protect you from the sunlight.  The weather is unpredictable and there may be times when the sea is rough.  Make sure you cover your things with the plastic bag so that it won’t get wet.  Chances are you may get wet due to unpredictable rough sea.

In the backround of the boat is M/V Eagle Ferry

There is a ferry in Aparri that leaves at 6 a.m.  M/V. Eagle is the only ferry that travels to Calayan and Aparri, vice versa.  The schedule may vary.  The ferry docks at Poblacion and is a walking distance to the municipal hall of Calayan. 

Where to Stay In Calayan Island:

There is no hotel or inn at Calayan Island.  You can stay at TPS Homestay and you can contact Tessie to reserve in advance.  The rate is 200 pesos a day and you can use the dining room and kitchen.  TPS Homestay offers catering service just in case you want someone to cook some meals for you. 

TPS Homestay
Dining Room
Tessie's wines that she sell to her guests
Sunset in Poblacion beach is a walking distance from the homestay

Contact Person:  Tessie Singun, 09298375737.  For your guided tour, Tessie can help you arrange your tour with the tour guide and tricycle service.  Aside from Sibang Beach, there are some spots that I was not able goad and I had some few regrets about missing out these places.

Some Helpful Information About Calayan Island

·         There’s no internet café in Calayan.   If you are using your mobile phone or pocket wi-fi to surf or check any messages on email or Facebook, it’s really slow.  Smart works when you make a call or send some text messages.
·         There is no public market to buy some fresh foods.  If you want to buy some sea foods, there is a fish vendor that in the street.  You can also get a caterer that will serve the meals for you.
·         There’s no local bank in Calayan, no atm machines, make sure you bring extra cash.
·         There are no carinderias or restaurants, only some bake shops where you can buy goods.
·         Electricity is only available from 12 noon to 12 midnight. 

If you want to reserve a booking going back to Claveria or Appari, you can  let Tessie know beforehand so that she can help you with the schedule.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Just A Glimpse of Jalajala, Rizal

I have been researching about Jala-Jala, a tip-most town in Rizal Province just after Pililia.  I got curious about going to this town and in my researches, I have had few information gotten from the bloggers.  According to Wikipedia, Jalajala is a fourth class municipality of Rizal. with  more than 30,000 population as of 2010 census.  Southeast of Manila, it lies on eastern part of Rizal in the largest freshwater lake, Laguna de Bay.

Since getting to Jalajala was just short, I have never tried to cross the town proper and I let the jeepney driver to drop me off where I could walk to the nearest lake.  The local I have talked to informed me that jeepneys going back to Tanay, Rizal is up to 6 p.m. only so I really had a short stint in Jalajala.  I had few more pictures taken and when you get there, you can go to the lake where you can see and take photos of the setting sun.

I don't have much to say about Jalajala yet but will go back soon for more photo stints.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

The Windmills in Bangui, Ilocos Norte

Sunset in Bangui
On the fourth day in Calayan happened to be my last day in the island. At 5 a.m. (May 20, 2014) I was fetched by Jomar who drove his tricycle to the shore where M/B Morning Star docks.  There is no port in Calayan Island.  Just before getting to lampitaw, I took some sunrise photos.
My shot of windmills just before the sunset
The boat left the shore at 6:45 a.m.  It was a 5-hour boat ride back to Claveria.  I had lunch first in a small restaurant and rested for about an hour just before proceeding to the bus station going to Laoag, Ilocos Norte.  I was advised by Ariel, someone I met from the homestay in Calayan to take Laoag going to Manila, if I wanted to see the windmills in Bangui.  He said that Bangui is just only an hour drive from Claveria.
Sunrise, my shot before the lampitaw left from Calayan to Claveria
I went to the bus station but it only seemed that the bus won’t leave immediately, and I asked the tricycle driver to take me to the place where vans are going to Laoag.  When I was at the van terminal I asked the driver to drop me off to the windmills in Bangui and he said that going to Bangui will take 1.5 hours.

It was around 3:30 p.m. when the van dropped me off in Bangui with my 2 heavy bags on my shoulder.  It was 2-kilometer walk to the shore from the main high way as the person who was in charge for the traffic told me.

Upon reaching the Bangui windmills, I took a snack in the restaurant and took some rests after a tiring walk from the main road.  I waited for the sunset so I could take some pictures of the windmills.

I left the windmills at 6:15 p.m. and just before that, the folks there said that the restaurants and souvenir stores will close at 6 p.m.  There’s no transportation that would take you back to the main road.  I asked for a favor to the one who operate the restaurant to take me to the main high way with their motorbike.  I was lucky enough for that favor and gave a tip to someone who drove me to the high way where the buses going to Manila pass by. 

Unfortunately the bus won’t stop till I waited long in the dark.  The traffic crew advised me to take Laoag.  I had to ride the bus going back to the main town of Bangui and the driver dropped me off to the checkpoint so that the police will stop and let me ride the bus.  I waited for the bus at the checkpoint where the police officer helped me and stop the bus taking me to Laoag City.

After 1.5 hours, the bus finally reached Laoag City.  I had some companies who are going back to Manila from Pagudpod and we took the Partas bus going to Manila at 10 p.m.

My Calayan adventure was finally over, taking me from the island to Laoag until I reached home.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Calayan Island Adventure: Getting to Magsidel

Day 3 in Calayan Island.
Monday (May 19) was a rest day for me, after some exhausting activities from the previous days.  I was thinking of a place that I should go few hours before sunset and I asked Tessie, the owner of TPS Homestay about the best location of sunset aside from poblacion.  She said I should go to Magsidel and I need to ride a tricycle.  But I prefer to walk, haha, it’s just that when you do a photo walk and collect some photos, for me it is best to walk.  I got used to it and it just reminds me when I was in California, when I go places I preferred to walk.

Magsidel Church
At the cliff is a 180 degree scenic view of the shore
So I did the walking tour stretching the main road to Magsidel starting from TPS Homestay 2 hours before sunset.  The sun was still high and I asked some people where Magsidel was.  The small church serves as the landmark that you have reached the spot.  I took a rest to the store and had some chats with the folks there asking them if there were still tricycles going back to poblacion.  They said that it wasn’t too much that day.  A few walks later I have reached the church and took some photos.  It was a small church that you won’t notice it as a church because there was no sign and you can find the cross on the ground at the back of the church.  The church was standing on a cliff,  where you can see 180 degree view of the shore.  They said this is the best spot to photograph the sunset and use the picture for t-shirts production.

A house in the main road to Magsidel
Cows in a ranch
Getting to Magsidel was more than an hour walk.

A few minutes later I walked to the main road and went down until I reach the sandy shore at the left side of the road.  This is where I waited for the sunset for my photo shoot.  Sunset was gone from the horizon at 6:30 p.m.  Then I had a little problem that it was quite dark already and I started walking to the main road.  Only few motorbikes run, after some few walks a folk who was driving the motorcycle passed by so I asked him if I could take a hitch.  On his back was the other guy, but he won’t reach the poblacion.  I took a ride after all it lessens my burden of walking back to the homestay.  The guy dropped us off after reaching his place to the main road and we started walking down the main road.

The folk brought the carabao down the shore.
Just before the sunrise
A few minutes later, a lady driving her motorcycle offered me a ride and she dropped me off to the bakeshop where I bought some bread for my dinner.

When I reached homestay, Tessie was there having a meeting with some fellas.  When the meeting was through, we had a conversation about my departure the following day and she called Jomar, the head of the tricycle association to pick me up at 5 a.m. as lampitaw M/B Morning Star leaves at 6 a.m.  She gave me a dinner with fish sinigang as viand. 

Related Links:

A Guide When Getting to Calayan Island
Calayan Island Adventure: Getting to Magsidel
Calayan Island Adventure: Sibang Beach
Calayan Island Adventure: The Lampitaw Boat Ride
Cagayan Valley: A Glimpse of Claveria