Category Archives: music

more liberating

last weekend, I travelled to bohol together with the alfon and the berdin’s.

other than the usual popular scenic spots tour in bohol, one of the itinerary for the three-day vacation was to go to e.a.t. danao or the extreme/eco/educational adventure tour. the ecotourism concept is set-up to benefit the municipality of danao, bohol and its people. a local government unit initiated and managed facility with a huge nature park. the area used to be the base camp of the revered boholano hero, francisco dagohoy, who led the longest philippine revolutionary movement according to history.

it was one of the wish list by the nieces of jet to experience the thrilling outdoor adventures namely; suislide, caving, river tubing and the plunge to name a few. But since we only have a limited time, the girls opted to have the “suislide”  while I and jet chose the “plunge” (we already have tried the suislide four years ago – still in e.a.t. danao).

suislide is basically a zip-line consisting of a pulley suspended on a cable mounted on an incline cliff. the suislide has two lines, going forth and back. its starting point is parallel to the sky ride and plunge’s height. suislide is the local version for zipline, a sky ride or a slide for life. sui-slide is coined from the word, “suis“ (the sound of the cable ride once you get to slide) and “slide”. it could also mean for some who is so much petrified with heights to be a suicidal slide. it traverses around half a kilometer from one mountain to another, taking you to less than a minute exhilarating ride.

the plunge is a canyon swing adventure attraction mounted over a 200 meter high and 300 meter wide gorge. a person would have to do a 45 meters free fall before being launched on a pendulum swing measuring to a hundred meter diameter. cable has a maximum working load of 5 tons. now longer (70 meters) more fear some.

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for me, the “plunge” is the best “fear factor” experience amongst the adventures offered. the plunge was even more nerve-racking compared to the suislide. you have to plunge or literally drop to an open air helpless (but the harness is there).  you fall with too much speed making you hold on to your breath involuntarily. before jumping in to the bridge with my feet up, like bungee jumping (aka spiderman), i convinced myself that this is just easy for me. i have tried the roller coasters in universal studios singapore, where you are reversed a couple of times in mid-air as if you fall together with the other riders which was exhilarating. but the plunge is way different – you are just on your own.

others chose not to try these types of adventures because they are afraid. what if? what if? what if something would happen along the way? i respect their choices. to each is own. well, i also have my own fears, but i chose to face them. this is one way for me to overcome my fear of any kind – to overcome stumbling blocks so that when the real situation comes, you are prepared.

this experience made appreciate my life more. its actually more than liberating. its bliss!

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can’t forget

i really can’t forget my first travel abroad. i was very, very excited to travel to singapore – super excited to experience the culture and fun with my partner and our close family. at last, my passport would have a stamped international travel – i am now a certified international traveler. i never stopped smiling from mactan international airport in cebu to changi airport in singapore – you are greeted by this modern and spacious architecture of the airport with their great customer service from their immigration officers. you really can feel that you are being welcomed and taken cared-of. this country has just a lot to offer to tourists like me. not to mention the most famous universal studios, sentosa island parks, singapore flyer, marina bay sands, singapore river, shopping malls and a whole lot more.

singapore is a multi-racial country. it has a diverse culture despite its small size. the largest group are the chinese with about 75% of the population. the malays, comprised of descendants of singapore’s original inhabitants as well as the migrants from present day malaysia, indonesia and brunei, is 14% while the indians on the other hand form about 9% of the population. the remainder is a mix of many other cultures, most notably the eurasians who are of mixed european and asian descent, and also a handful of filipinos, burmese, japanese, thais and many others.

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we stayed at carlton hotel in bras basah road, singapore for 3 days & 2 nights. i was not able to explore so much with the hotel because we were out the whole day. but the room is good and our location is just stunning – amazing view of the metropolis especially during the night.

the double decker was also a great highlight of our activity. i thought that its only available in europe but it was just infront of me. we rode the double deckers thru duck tours while touring around the city.

sentosa island was another admirable place. i wish we had one in cebu where mactan island is. but anyways, we went to “underwater world singapore” where you can see a live museum of marine life plus and interactive ocean adventure with the dolphins and seals in another location. i also experienced riding the skyline luge in siloso. then, the highlight was the “songs of the sea” show featuring pyrotechnics, water jets and laser synchronized with lively music and cast.

and who would never forget “universal studios.” this is the place to be when you are in singapore. the adventure never stops. riding the carousel with the “madagascar” movie themed ride transported me back to my childhood. then off to a slight adventurous roller coaster in the “far far away land” where i got to meet the ogre and princess fiona in person. they were just an awesome couple. afterwards was the exciting 4d movie in the castle. that was not enough. we rode the jurassic park themed water adventure ride where we get to see the dinosaurs before civilization. i got wet. good thing, i wore my board shorts. we crossed to the ancient egypt themed adventure with “the mummy returns” indoor roller coaster. this was a very good ride. fresh from the turning and pushing the coaster, we went to a high risk adventure in sci-fi city. they actually have two kinds of roller coaster. the first one, your feet is grounded to the floor while the other one is hanged. i just don’t know what to expect from this ride. i know this is different but i tried the one on the floor first. i rode it twice and moved to a more extreme ride which keeps your foot hanging while your body is securely attached. it was an awesome ride. imagine being inverted for how many times in approximately 3 minutes. it was once in a lifetime. i just love death defying adventures.

now, to cool down, we went to a studio and met my idol, charlie chaplin. I was overwhelmed to see him there. he looked exactly the same with the black and white film artist. we also watched a mini-concert in an 80’s themed bar along the rode. glad to see filipino artist strutting their talents on stage. and of course the infamous “betty boop” who was all the way smiling when we had our picture with her.

three days was not enough to cover the interesting places in singapore. riding the singapore flyer, i observed how industrialized this country is, able to balance advanced technology with modern lifestyle and tradition.

thank you very much doc mimi and doc doyet and of course to my beloved partner, you all made this trip possible. i love you all.

manoy porting

“maajong pag-abut!,” (bohol dialect) which means “welcome,” were the first uttered words from the fifty plus year old manoy porting when we arrived in the made shift port assembly area for paddle boats en route the mysterious ‘lamanok island’ in anda, bohol, philippines.

mr. fortunato “porting” simbahon was our unforgettable tourist guide in our trip to the island. he shared with us a very infortaining (informative and entertaining) storytelling about lamanok. that is why he is the most sought tourist guide of anda local tourism.

manoy porting started to be a professional tourist guide when he grabbed the opportunity  to be a local guide offered by the government to boost up local tourism. he participated in the workshop conducted by the government of anda in partnership with the department of tourism. With no formal education, this was never a hindrance to him. he is even glad to support and able contribute to the government in whatever way he can.

manoy porting gives you trivia’s, centuries-old stories and myths that he passionately communicate with tourists. there was never a single lull moment when he starts opening his mouth. he combines the information he got from the teachers and shamans and shares it during tour guides. he says his stories mainly focus on the life villagers, fishermen, and fellow protectors of the natural beauty of anda. but, whatever stories he tell, he always say a disclaimer to all the invalidated information so as not to create confusion to history. these stories are meant to inspire everyone to take care of the environment so as to take care of our future.

lamanok island

anda is the cradle of civilization in the philippines, as claimed by some individuals. they believed that people lived there during the paleolithic era. this is evident in lamanok island in anda, bohol where you would find paleolitic paintings on cliffs and prehistoric bones to name a few.

the travel from the main land to lamanok island took us more or less 15 minutes. the group of fishermen entertained us with the local songs thru their guitar and harmonica while on the boat. the women also sang while throwing petals to the sea. plus, I will never forget their dog barking in melodic harmony with them. the whole experience was just awesome.

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carpe diem…

carpe diem quam minimum credula postero – – – “seize the day, putting as little trust as possible in the future,” these line comes from a popular latin poem by horace.

third chapter

as i was reading through horace’s poem, i realized something in my life. i was busy buying time.

i remembered watching a dvd last year entitled “in time” lead by justin timberlake and amanda seyfried, where time became the most definitive and highest form of currency. people die for it to live more. the rich lives longer, while the poor struggles for it to extend their lives. relating this with my current situation, this maybe true.

as we focus our lives with our priorities, we often forget about the present because we worry so much about our future. we forget to smell the flowers, to see the beauty of sunrise, the colors of sunset, to say hi and smile to people we meet along the way. we forgot the present.

i am always in a hurry – i am afraid to be left behind.

if you recalled in the previous chapter, i did not graduate on time because, of financial difficulties having to afford my tuition fee in college – i did not have a choice. my future was not prepared. though my parents did, but they withdrew my educational plan for an added capital in our business that later on closed down.

through the years, i am catching up with time that was snatched from me – wanting to get all the promotions in work, dine here and there, the fun and the laughter. its better late than never but i still need to catch up – catch up with time.  i could have experienced more if i finished college on time. i could have been a successful physical therapist in the united states, earning and helping my family big time. money should never have been a problem for me and my family today.

days before my birthday for the past 8 years, i experience emptiness. i raise questions with myself, “where my life is right now – am i successful?” it just came naturally and i allowed myself to be vulnerable during those days. this is the only time, i became very emotional. my partner was able to notice that from me and i warned him that time that i am not in my right element. i needed more of his patience with his love, support and understanding.

relating to you the gray side of me, gave me a recognition of my own imperfection. i never fully acknowledged this part of myself  to embrace each day’s blessings – and that life itself is a gift. i should let go of my worries in the past because that was “water under the bridge.” i can never change the past. what is important is to live in the present.

“if one cannot live in the present, then one cannot embrace the blessings of the day.”

i am thankful for the life i am living. i would say that it was never an easy road for me in the past but what matters most are the learning experiences that made me who i am now – accepting and appreciating everyone around me, realizing how blessed i am.

“life is too short. seize the day, as if it was your last.”

exits, entrances…

all the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players: they have their exits and their entrances; and one man in his time plays many parts, his acts being seven ages…. william shakespeare

second chapter

i remembered decades ago, when i was still young, i was asked by the host to do an impromptu dance number in our compound’s christmas party while waiting for the judge’s decision for the music minus one singing contest. they started playing a michael jackson dance track (i really can’t remember the song) that made me move in place.  with the pushing and shouting from my neighbors for me to dance, i found myself up the stage. that was the start of my career in dancing.

yes, that was years ago. i started dancing when i was five. i really did not care how i was moving or how people would be reacting to the way i danced. i wanted to move my body. i just wanted to fly.

with my utmost interest in dancing, i joined dance clubs in elementary and high school despite the taboo that only girls can join and or be labeled gay if you are challenging the norm. i really did not care. they can call me anything, i am happy here. and i never stopped – in college, i auditioned for the university based groups and professional dance companies as well.

i never stopped dancing, even if it bleeds. that kept me going and moving. i never will stop.

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dancing is my way to come close to God. its like flying infront of Him.

through the years, improving my craft was my commitment. that kept me grounded and wanting for more. so, i ventured into acting and singing that honed me to become a professional theater performer. the discipline in theater made me more appreciate these stage actors and actresses who later become versatile characters in movies and television shows. this craft is a challenge for perfection because once you get up on stage, there is no more take two.

working in the corporate world now, i never stopped dancing. i am applying the training and the discipline i have with all the mentors i was with like daisy ba-ad, douglas nierras, prof. ligaya rabago to name a few, and all my co-performers. they all mattered to me and made me who i am today. they say that i am strict and firm, but i have a soft heart. through the years i have mellowed down and appreciated life more.

possibly, when i first danced on stage when i was five years old, it was a rewarding experience for me because until now that gave me confidence to face people.

to put me on the loop in this world, i always see to it that i watch live stage performances once in a while.

this experience was part of the journey surviving each day during college where i needed to earn more to support myself. yes, i am aware that there is not much money in dancing, theater, performing. its a struggle. but, i found so much more. i found true friends.

to be continued….

                                                                                                                   

natal day…

“and in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. it’s the life in your years” — abraham lincoln.

today marks another chapter in my life. another year of adventure and celebration. creating a difference in this world. i thank you Lord for the gift to see, hear, smell, run, walk, swim, dive, fly, dance, feel, sing, breathe and everything i have in life.

i thank you Lord for this borrowed time. i thank You for bringing me into this world.

celebrating life each and every moment…

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curious, discover…

i am very curious by nature. i always believe that there is something new to discover and learn every single moment. i crave for more information.

my blog talks about my daily adventures, travels, gastronomic trips, shoes, people, technology, politics and a lot more.

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