Princess under the pillows


Smiling under the pillows.


Naughty Princess

RIP, Kuya


Gone too soon.


And the youngest is always the one who hurts the most.

Rest in peace, Kuya. I know you’re now in a better place.

Princess after playing



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Princess gets freebies


After being a regular client for four years, Princess got freebies this afternoon from Animal House!


Yay! Free Denta Stix that was handed to me upon buying Princess’ weekly supplies this afternoon!

But that’s after a gazillion of canned Science Diet (Princess has been consuming 1 can in 2 days for 2 years and 5 months already), packs of Denta Stix (1 85g pack every week for 2 years and 5 months as well), a lot of grooming sessions, 1 confinement, lotsa check-ups, and lots of laboratory tests.


Each of the free Denta Stix pack contains 1 thin stick. So we got three free thin sticks. Hurray!

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F&X Labor Day Sale


Feel the heat this summer! Enjoy hot discounts on selected styles from April 27 - May 6, 2012 only.


Visit your nearest F&X store at SM Megamall, Bonifacio Global City, Greenbelt 5, SM Mall of Asia, Trinoma, Robinson’s Manila, SM Southmall, SM North Edsa-Annex, SM Masinag, SM Clark and SM Cebu.

Giant Tetris


Tetris addiction to the max!

Seems like a group of students weren’t contented with just their computer screens to play Tetris that they recently hacked the Green Building of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to turn it into a giant Tetris screen.

The act can be considered genius, but I’m sure they have violated some rules in the process.

Watch the video below.

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Princess is love


Princess is love.


Taken using Samsung Galaxy Y, edited using Lightbox.

Capones Island Lighthouse


I wasn’t planning to go out immediately after the Alay Lakad cuz I still had blisters under my feet, but I chanced upon my friend Ailyn on Facebook two Saturday nights ago. I knew she had Mondays off and I asked if she wanted to go on a daytrip with me on her next rest day.

Daytrips are really tempting for those who work six days a week, and Ailyn wasn’t able to resist the idea of sea, sun, and fun.


At 9:30 AM last Monday, we were already on the shores of Pundaquit, getting ready to ride the small boat that would take us to Camara and Capones Grande islands. Capones Grande Island (Isla de Gran Capon) in Zambales is frequented by foreign and local tourists normally as a side trip for visiting the nearby Anawangin or Nagsasa Cove. I had been to Anawangin two years ago but the group I went with were too tired after two days at the beach that they just dropped the side trip.

2012-04-09 10.00.29 phone pic of the whale-like portion of Camara Island

The supposed two-island hop, however, turned out a failure because waves were so strong near the shores of Camara Island plus our bangkero told us we had to get off the boat in chest deep waters and walk towards the shore. We refused and decided to just circle the island and go straight to Capones Grande.


A group of local tourists was swimming on the sandy beach of Capones when we arrived. It wasn’t the shore nearest the lighthouse, though, because (again) our bangkero told us he couldn’t get near the shore that’s nearest to the lighthouse because of the waves and the rocks.

capones building

We were made to walk towards the other side of the island, we even passed by an abandoned building that was being used by the navies. The navies were friendly, though, and we were made to write on a log book.

Sadly, waves were even bigger on that part we couldn’t even walk between the rocky shore and the cliff wall. The navies advised us to just wait for the low tide at around 3 PM.


So we just went back to the sandy beach, where the other tourists were, and had lunch and enjoyed the water afterwards. It’s quite disappointing, though, to see piles of garbage in the area.

Anyway, I wouldn’t leave without seeing the lighthouse so I asked the boatman to take us to that rocky shore he told us about. I put our gadgets inside my waterproof bag just in case we really had to swim to the shore.

As we approached the area, however, there were two boats on the shoreline,  unloading local tourists. We realized our boatman just didn’t wanna take us there (might be to save gas?).

It was just a few minutes of walking towards the lighthouse.


The view at the top of the hill was romantic. The refreshing breeze and the picturesque surroundings would make one wish for a longer stay. We, however, couldn’t do that that’s why we just made good use of our time to roam around as much as we could.

The lighthouse was finished in 1890, the same year it was also first lit. It was made to search and guide ships entering and leaving Subic and Manila Bay. It had first-order Fresnel lenses when it was first used. The original lamp and lantern, however, were replaced with modern solar-powered lighthouse light as part of the Maritime Safety Improvement of the Philippine Coast Guard (wiki). But while the tower was renovated, other parts of the station were not, leaving the keeper’s house and the other buildings around it having an eerie feel.

It was midday when we visited the place, but I’m sure I would have found the lighthouse creepy had we went later in the day, say, when the sun is about to set, with longer shadows and cooler breeze.

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How to get to Capones Grande Island:

- From Pasay, ride an Iba, Zambales-bound bus. Victory Liner fare as of this posting was P280. Drop off in front of the plaza.

- Ride a tricycle to Pundaquit. Fare: P60

- Rent a boat. Small boat was P800 (good for 4 pax). I personally recommend renting from JayR Agasa (09173809104). He and wife Liezel were very nice to us. Also part of the package was the use of shower rooms, plus free hot and cold drinking water after the island hop.

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Ozine Fest 2012 on April 13-15!


Ozine Fest 2012 is going to be held on April 13-15, 2012 at the Megatrade Halls 1 & 2 of SM Megamall.


There will be Battle of the Bands, Anime Figure Photoshoot Contest, Horror Booth, Karaoke Contest, Art Contest, Indie Artist Booth, Eating Contests (yes, your read it right) CosPlay Competition (of course!) and a lot more.

For more info regarding the event, you may visit or

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St. Louis de Toulouse Church


MY NIECE, APRIL, messaged me on Facebook to ask for details on how to get to a certain place in Laguna. I had been there almost two years ago, and wanting to give her the exact info, I searched Profound Bliss for my post regarding that place. And then I realized I wasn’t able to blog about it. Good thing I still have the photos, and the notes of my visit is still intact in one of my many little notebooks.

IT WAS IN that rainy day of September 12, 2010. A friend and I first went to Kamay ni Hesus in Lucban, Quezon, but knowing it wouldn’t take all day to tour the place, I brought with me a list of nearby places to visit.

By 11:30 AM, we’ve seen all there was to see in Kamay ni Hesus and we’re already inside a tricycle that would take us to the town proper of Lucban to see the old church. We paid the driver ten pesos per head that time, I wonder how much more expensive it is now.


The St. Louis de Toulouse Church was built in 1595. It was ruined in 1629 and was rebuilt between 1630 and 1640. The second church, though, was heavily damaged by fire in 1733. It was again rebuilt in 1738 to what it is now. The convent was completed in 1743. The World War II lightly damaged the church but the Historical Commission restored it in 1966.


Above was the NHI marker put up in 1939.

Going to places as old as this church makes me wonder what it was like back in the days. I’m sure it was such a picturesque scene, especially on Sundays, with the Indios in their native saya and kimona for the women and colorful camisa de chino for the men, and the Spaniards in their European clothes – top hats, umbrellas, fans, Sunday hats with feathers. (Forgive me, though, if I have mixed the eras in clothing my imaginary characters.)

And then Sisa would come looking for Crispin and Basilio in the belfry… now that’s Noli Me Tangere!

The church was closed at the time we were there. There was an open side door blocked by an office table and there was a woman behind it but she was eating her lunch so we didn’t bother asking if we could come in. What we asked her, however, was where to have our own lunch (LoL!) and the directions to the jeepney station going to our next stop (which was the place my niece was asking me about).

To be continued…

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Free Shanghai Rolls from Astro


Here’s a treat for the CD, DVD and Blu-Ray lovers!


Get a free Classic Savory Shanghai Rolls when you purchase CDs, DVDs and Blu-Ray from Astro!

Promo Mechanics:

-For a minimum purchase of PHP500.00 from Astroplus/Astrovision (single receipt), customer will receive a “Free Savory Shanghai Rolls” with any amount purchase at Classic Savory.

-To redeem, present Astroplus receipt at the following participating Classic Savory Branches.

-Customers must purchase at Savory with no minimum required.

-Promo is valid for dine-in and cash transactions only.

1. SM Mall of Asia - GF entertainment mall
2. Robinsons Ermita - Level 1, adriatico wing
3. SM North - GF Main building
4. SM San Lazaro - UGF near entertainment plaza
5. SM Pampanga - GF main building
6. Ali Mall - GF along Time Square Ave.
7. Glorietta 4 - 3rd Flr. Food Choices
8. One E-com Center - GF Mall of Asia
9. Landmark (Makati) - Upper Basement
10. Greenhills - 2nd Flr. Greenhills theater mall
11. SM Clark - GF
12. SM Sta. Mesa - UGF
13. SM Hypermarket Pasig - GF beside watsons
14. SM Lipa - GF
15. SM Baguio - UGF
16. Cash & Carry - Level 1
17. Alabang Town Center - 2nd Flr. Food Choices
18. Festival Mall - GF
19. SM Center Las Piñas - UGF
20. MarQuee Mall - Level 2 facing marquee park
21. The LINK - GF beside landmark makati
22. Robinsons Metro East - GF
23. SM Rosario - GF
24. SM Manila - UGF
25. SM Megamall - Bldg. A Lower GF
26. ETON Cyberpod Corinthian - UGF
27. Robinsons Cybergate Cebu - Level 1, near Chong Hua
28. SM Cebu - 2nd Flr. Main Building
29. SM Tarlac - 2nd Flr.
30. Pavilion Mall - Bldg. B GF
31. SM Bicutan - Bldg. B UGF
32. SM Adriatico - GF beside harrison plaza
33. SM Rosales - GF
34. SM San Pablo - GF
35. SM Calamba - GF
36. SM Novaliches - GF
37. Landmark (Trinoma) - Food Center
38. SM Marilao - GF
39. Robinsons Forum - 2nd flr
40. SM Davao – GF

Promo period is from April 2 to June 2, 2012!

Visit or inquire at Astroplus/Astrovision stores near you.

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Alay Lakad 2012


I was supposed not to do the Alay Lakad this year in exchange for a pilgrimage in Mt. Maculot, but I remembered I made a vow to do it every year so I crossed out that mountain in Cuenca from my agenda to walk to the Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage for the third time.


(Click here to view my Alay Lakad 2010 post or here for the Alay Lakad 2011 post.)

Melford and I left the house at almost 10:00 PM on Maundy Thursday, April 5, 2012. We originally planned to take a bus to Ortigas but buses were rare and there was already a large crowd gathered at the bus stop, presumably all going to Antipolo.


We decided to go to Pasig instead and start walking from Simbahan ng Pasig. Mepot, who was doing the Alay Lakad for the first time, was overwhelmed with the amount of people going to Antipolo when we reached Ortigas Avenue. Most of them were in groups, some were with their families that included toddlers, while some were with their significant others, holding hands while walking towards Antipolo.

The only stop we took was when we decided to eat at a 24-hour Jollibee store we passed by along the way at around 12:00 AM. No more until we reached the First Station of the Cross.

Here’s Mepot at Jollibee:


He has just graduated from high school. Compare him with the pic below I took in 2008 with Princess (also inside a Jollibee store). I’m sure it’s not the same white t-shirt, though. LoL!


It was my first time to do the station as the people I had been during the previous years wanted to just go up to the church and rest. The words of God imparted in loud speakers in each station somehow uplifted my faith and inspired me more.


It was 2:43 AM when we reached the first station, and 3:56 AM when we reached the Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage. It was still closed at the time but people liked to go up to the guarded front door, throw coins inside the church and make a wish.

It was easier to get near the church doors because it was either a little organized this time, or fewer people did the Alay Lakad this year.


Those who wanted to wait for the church to open at 5:00 AM were prohibited to stay at the front of the church, and instead were made to wait at the side. Others opted to flock at the nearby Petron station, the vast space near USA 88, inside Villa Dolorosa, or in the fastfood restaurants in the area that took the opportunity to earn more by opting to open 24 hours for the Alay Lakad season.

On our way back, we had arroz caldo from a carinderia near USA 88. It was far from being as good as my mother’s lugaw but was still good enough to fill a tired and sleepy person’s tummy.

It was already daylight when we got back to Tikling, the place where you could catch a bus going back to Manila.

After a few minutes of sitting inside an air-conditioned bus, however, I started feeling the blisters on my feet. I knew it would take a few days to heal, but I also knew Jesus suffered more than just blisters to save me.

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Mt. Talamitam: Bonding with the guides


Christian flashed a shy smile as I approached the bench he was sitting on, his feet propped up on the unpolished wood on either side of him. I was being shielded from the drizzle by my brown umbrella which I folded upon coming under the shed that was part of the registration area.


It was already past 3 PM, and I needed at least 2 hours to climb the summit, pause for a while, and climb back down. I had to be back at the highway by 7 PM in time for the last trip of the bus that would take me back to Manila.

“Samahan mo ulit ako,” I told Christian, talking about being my guide once again just like a year ago.

That Mt. Talamitam climb in the summer of 2011 was one of my most unforgettable climbs. While it was scorching hot when we started the hike, we had to pause and hide under the leaves of banana trees when it suddenly rained; the lightning and thunderstorm made it so scary for us to go on. The mountain, by the way, was the most barren that I have climbed.

The kid, who was now more certain that it was indeed me from last year, said, “Ang hilig mo sa naulan at saka sa hapon.” (You’re so fond of climbing when it rains and in the afternoon.) It was 2 PM when we climbed last year.

Meawhile, one of Christian’s two cousins who went with us last year was also there. Floriel greeted me excitedly and started talking about the pancit canton we cooked with rainwater at the summit and how we were afraid of getting struck by lightning.

After writing my name on the log book, changing into my climbing clothes and leaving most of my stuff in Bro. Ted’s (the Barangay Chairman and the kids’ uncle) house, Christian, Floriel and I walked under the drizzle and headed for the summit.

It was a tiring climb for me because I have been climbing rarely these days. Sitting in front of the computer all day with no exercise whatsoever has taken a toll on me. I asked to rest three times all through the climb but we were still able to make it to the summit in an hour and twenty.

The talks I shared with Christian and Floriel along the way made the climb seem faster than it actually was. I don’t know if it was just a feeling, but they treated me like a long lost friend, filling me in on the highlights of their young lives since we last saw one another. It also became like a funny interview when the conversation turned on me, as I tried to answer them in ways their young minds could grasp.

Floriel and Christian at the summit

I had with me the DSLR, but because it was drizzling (and I left the umbrella back at Bro. Ted’s, of course) I was only able to take a few shots at the summit. It was also getting late so I had to hurry back.

Using the side trail on our way back, we passed by some mountaineers (thirteen, according to Floriel) camped just below the summit. They were going to stay overnight and it was so brave of them to do so despite the drizzle, strong winds and dark clouds that threatened hard rains.

At exactly 5:50 PM, we were already at the lone store near the registration where we had ham and egg sandwiches and sodas. I needed that because I would be in for a long ride back to Manila.

Floriel, Christian and Florian

The light and bubbly conversation continued on while we ate, and while at it, Florian, Floriel’s younger brother who also climbed with me last year, arrived. He was less shy now, and he showed the most physical change when I last saw them. He’s now taller and more conscious of his looks. (Compare the above photo with this.)

He was all smiles and joined the other boys in telling me stories – mostly about school, girls, and some scary stuff.

Time flew by so fast, though, and I had to go. The three of them walked me to the highway and stayed with me while I waited for the bus.

“Kailan ulit balik mo, Kuya?” Christian asked, and I was glad he dropped the “Sir” for “Kuya.”

“’Pag may time, babalik ako,” I promised.

Floriel, being the only one who had a cellphone, even gave me his number. “Text mo kami, ha, Kuya?”

I know I have created a bond with the kids. I haven’t texted them yet, but I will one of these days.

Somehow, I now know that it’s really not the mountain that gives you great experiences but how you climb it and the experiences and friends that you gain while walking its trails.

Mt. Talamitam has indeed given me memorable experiences in the two times I climbed the mountain. The first one may be most remembered by the hard rain and thunderstorms, but I know the second one will always put a smile on my face every time it will cross my mind.

No reason to fold documents anymore


Been looking for an affordable bag that could fit my DSLR and netbook. Not a backpack, but something I could use in meetings and stuff.


So I didn’t let this one go when I saw it on display in a Folded and Hung store last Saturday. (And yes, I photographed it on top of Princess’ cage.)

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It only comes in brown and costs Php1,399.

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Cars and Girls at the MIAS 2012


The Manila International Auto Show was held at the World Trade Center from March 29 to April 1, 2012. Car enthusiasts of all ages flocked the venue especially on the last two days which fell on weekends.

I went there with K, my climb buddy, last Saturday afternoon. And we picked the wrong day cuz a religious organization held its alay lakad on the same afternoon, causing traffic in the complex.

It was a fun afternoon, though, the luxury cars were real feast to the eyes.

Top car brands that participated were Jaguar, Mercedes Benz, Audi, Porsche, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Chevrolet, BMW, Subaru, Ford, Hyundai, Toyota, Mitsubishi and much more!

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But while others went there for the cars, some got more interested in the models.

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What took away my attention, however, were the vintage cars that were so taken care of they looked brand new.

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And this, for me, was the winner:


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