Cardiac Arrest

15 12 2008

Went to Manila again on Sunday and so I have to blog. Photos here!

Quiapo was our first destination and we went under the bridge, which turned out to be a bustling piece of tourist souvenir heaven. Intramuros was next and something must be wrong with it since it was getting lovelier by the minute. Chanced upon interesting corners that were previously unexplored. The Manila skyline was dramatic, the street art was colorful, and the old (or restored) buildings were glowing in the late afternoon light. Even derelict walls were suddenly exciting.

From the southern end of the walled city, we walked along UN Avenue to an Indian grocery where chickpeas, rotis and samosas were bought. Aborting an initial plan to head over to Paco Cemetery, we decided to try the samosas in a bakeshop instead. They were deep-fried, crispy vegetable loveliness.

In other news, I promise not to cause heart attacks on friends anymore! I’ve learned my lesson. But I’m deeply grateful to the two of you for understanding. Muchas gracias, grazie, merci, shukran, spasibo, khop khun khrap, cam on, kamsamhamnida, xie xie, arigato and whatever it is they use in Mars.


Children of Pasig

3 02 2008

Off we headed again to Manila yesterday. First leg: Guadalupe to Escolta via the surprisingly serene Pasig River on a river cruise. Along the way we saw houses, bridges, birds, water lilies, Jejomar’s office, Malacanang (no picture-taking!), oil depots, industrial laborers, exhibitionists and the many many riverside people who greeted us with smiles, waves and probably swear words.

Second leg: Escolta to Binondo via foot. The latter was a feast of pre-Chinese-New-Year colors. Everywhere there were things red and round and edible and Chinese.

Lunch of seafood, vegetables and amphibian limbs was immediately beside a stagnant estero.

Third leg: Binondo to National Museum via jeep. I saw Spoliarium for the first time and almost cried. I also saw Hidalgo’s ‘The Assassination of Governor Bustamante’ and almost cried too. And I wasn’t even pretending to be cultured and arty. At least during that moment, not yet.

Fourth leg: National Museum to Quiapo and its sea of DVDs. Then back home, traveled and tired. Manila is a new favorite place (and it will remain so as long as I do not have to actually live there).

A Hundred Toasts

9 01 2008

I know I should be pressing words here, but pictures are more than enough. Let’s celebrate! UP is turning a 100 this year!


3 01 2008

Lantern Parade Photos (including paparazzi shots of Rica Peralejo!!!)

Bicol Shots (attempts at macro)

Now, I need to finish my thesis.


9 12 2007

I’m off for a trip in a few hours and I feel unusually calm. During these moments, calm is not good.

And yesterday, vodka + vodka-cognac + tequila + a wonderful something = embarrassingly good time, letting out my inner coñoness.

A report, many photos, and pasalubong to those interested when I return!

And Intramuros is always lovely.

Twelfth Month

2 12 2007

Temperature dipped to twenty degrees yesterday and we’re barely even in December! December will always be: Christmas, Christmas parties, birthdays, birthday parties, cold early mornings, lights, malls, bonuses, Lantern Parades, ‘whenever I see girls and boys…’, ninongs, inaanaks, holdapers, early sunsets, snow!

In other news, some photos:

CSWCD library was closed today so I went and took pictures instead.

I love power lines! CSWCD power lines!

Way to the Lagoon

Benches across Melchor Hall

White trees near the ampitheater

Token Oblation sunset shot

From another angle

Stratus clouds (signs of atmospheric stability, the layered form is due to the air parcel’s resistance to buoyancy, oy)

Mall parking lot after Pryor’s birthday celebration. Great setting and poses but blurred photos because my hands were tipsy!

Random shot of paper butteflies at Gateway

Cardiac Geographies

23 11 2007

So, yes, Wednesday.

After hours of tedious work in the library, the afternoon managed to be awesome, in the masochistic kinda sense, when I went to Quiapo for a necessary shopping experience in one of its unassuming yet wonderfully cheap stores. The rain made the day gloomy and the traffic congested, and the puddles in Hidalgo flooded my shoes with dirty water when I tiptoed the wrong way, but it was all worth it for the resulting rewards of the loot. Later, I met up with Trina, who was on one of her last legs of field work along the esteros of Sampaloc, and we decided to walk to Binondo for dining purposes (given the notorious reputation of Quiapo fastfood), and wandered about semi-aimlessly long enough such that we actually completed a mini-tour of Manila north of the Pasig (a Quiapo-Sta Cruz-San Nicolas-Binondo route). With wrinkly feet and tired leg muscles, we eventually found the resto near the estero, thanks in part to our long-delayed decision of hiring a pedicab. Also, we were awed (and shocked) at the pedicab driver’s incredible navigation abilities on the traffic-ridden streets. Apart from his pedaling and braking skills, we also marveled at how he managed to make the pedicab pass in between the bumper of one car and the tail of another one without a single scratch.

At around 8, we left for QC via the train line which ends/begins in Divisoria, with fishy-smelling shirts, completing an eventful 4-hour journey across the heart (or aorta, to be more precise) of Manila.