Street but Sweet


Friday, April 28, 2006

The E list

I am officially an E-list celebrity.

The world of the famous can be broken down into five tiers: tier A, the big-name people with staying power (e.g., Sharon, Kris, and all the others that can be recognized by their first names across all generations); B, those who are currently hot, the its and the anti-its who, in a matter of months, will find their names further and further down the guest list (think reality-show-bred "talents"); C, those who are associated with A or B (SOs, managers, who often accompany their celeb friends/wards to events, and who grace the pages of magazines because of association); D, those who were once famous but now have no career to speak of (i.e., the “Where are they now?”s; most likely once part of the B list); and E, those who've appeared on TV or in print, just one or two times, but one or two times more than 97.3% of the population.

I have no intention of working my way up the celebrity ladder, and in fact am quite reluctant to be on a rung at all. But I just realized that I can't avoid this for long--it's a job hazard.

After guesting on some show in college (long story), and appearing in a TVC which had friends singing the theme song every effin' day while it ran (I won't lie though, I don't regret doing it 'coz it was an interesting experience, plus I got paid ok for a day’s work), I pretty much swore off doing VTRs and, well, being in front of a camera in general. I realized that it's one of the places where I'm least comfortable. Sure, I like having pics taken with friends, but thrust me in the limelight by myself and I panic.

Which is why this morning was a mild form of torture for me. Had to be interviewed about our book for some segment in this TV show. First, there was the matter of picking out an outfit. It was mind-boggling having a closetful of nothing to wear. (Mental note: When shopping for clothes, I should now ask myself, "Could I wear this on TV?" just to prevent future stress. *insert eyerolling here*) Next, there was the makeup. There's this misconception that I'm super kikay when, in reality, I know nothing about putting on makeup. I prefer using my fingers to using all these fancy brushes...or maybe it's just 'coz I don't know what each one is for. Whenever I try to experiment, I always end up looking the same or, in the case of that smoky-eye attempt, like someone who's just gotten a beating. Ordinarily, I would rely on a neighboring beauty ed, but today, I had no one to do it for me. And lastly, the actual interview. I've given speeches and lectured rooms full of auditors, but my public speaking skills tend to run and hide as soon as that lens focuses on me. I think being bad at interviews had a lot to do with the anxiety...

I finally decided on my burnt orange Diane Von Furstenburg-esque wrap dress. I thought I looked a bit plump sitting down, but I convinced myself that if I was going to look fat, there was really nothing I could do about it, whatever it was I chose to wear. Besides I wasn’t going to tell my friends when it was going to air anyway, so only strangers would see me in all my tubby glory. The makeup? I tried, believe me, I tried. I just made up for it with my Farah Fawcett hair. The interview? It went ok, not as bad as I thought it would go. Even with my “ums” I opted not to have second takes. As a result, most of the stuff I said would probably be edited out. It was nice, though, when the others were looking at the screen before I started, and they said, “You look really good!” The bronzer and eye shadow I slathered on must’ve done their work. (Or they were just trying to make uto-uto me feel better.)

Looking back, I probably would’ve talked more slowly (students have commented that I talk too fast). I was also too conscious trying to answer all the questions that I didn’t pay attention to my highly animated eyebrows—in the middle of conversations sometimes, H would actually place his hand on them just to keep me from crinkling my forehead--so I probably looked like I had a bit too much caffeine. But hey, at least I got it over with. And thankfully, it’ll be a looong time before I’m asked to do this again.

I wonder if E-listers get free stuff? Or get some sort of special treatment? No matter. I'm prying my fingers loose from the rung as I type, and quietly melting back into the crowd of Mere Mortals.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Wow Philippines 2006: Barkada beach trip

My high school (grade school even) barkada started taking annual beach trips in 2003. Our very first one was to a friend's place in Bagac, Bataan called "El Paradiso." It was a beautiful private beach, with nothing but a covered area for sleeping and eating, an outdoor kitchen, and some bathrooms--the bare necessities. Hmmm, I really miss that place. And hanging out with the cheerdancers!

I think it's an unspoken rule that the barkada would try to go to a different beach every trip. The following year, we went to Reese's tito's place in Anilao. The year after that, we went to Laiya and to Montemar. For 2006, we went to Coral View Resort in Morong, Bataan ( Nice place, it just opened last December. It's got light sand and fairly clean water. The rooms we got each had two queen-sized beds (one was a pull-out), air-conditioning, cable, and a clean bathroom. I think there are bigger rooms with a sala. By the beach, there are these little huts where you can sit, protected from the sun, and also a couple of hammocks. Great for overnight trips.

The original plan was to leave Friday night so we could catch the meteor shower, but we left Saturday morning instead, so I missed out on making a few wishes. After lunch, Marns, Cris, and I challenged the two boys to a volleyball match--H was in Silang for work, Jiggy's still in Nepal covering the Everest climb. Mars (Maverick) and Mike (Iceman) got an ass-whooping. Ha! Well, ok, they won the first set. And it was 3-on-2. But it's always a great feeling winning over boys. Haha.

At sunset, we walked on the beach to Marns's family's soon-to-be-completed house nearby. It was nice having a bit of a heart-to-heart with Ching on the way and back; in fact, it was great being with the people I grew up with. It's when I'm with them that I realize how much I miss being around them. Later that night, while the boys played poker, Marns's Tito Jun brought out the Goldshlager. Thankfully, they let me off coz of my allergies (I'm more of a spectator when it comes to these things. And a cleaner-upper. Hehe), but the other girls had to finish the bottle. And we got to see vintage Reese in action. Haha. So much for our planned bonfire. I contented myself with munching on some unroasted marshmallows. Mmmm.

The others woke up pretty early Sunday morning, considering the night that they had. After breakfast, we made our way to the breakwater some meters from the shore, where we just talked--about mundane things like Gilmore Girls (I think, like Conan O'Brien's wife, half our barkada has a girl crush on Alexis Bledel. Haha. She is such a sweetheart!)--and looked at tiny fish. Took a few pics, including a 2006 version of the Batangas pic (which I wasn't part of. Boo! This year's version below), got a bit of sun, packed up, and reluctantly headed back to Manila.

"Don't you wish life were just an endless vacation?" I asked Ching. It must have been a few weeks' worth of stress talking. Some people I know often dream of a life of "LOI"--living on interest: having an obese bank account which makes work completely unnecessary. But even if I did have some trust fund, I don't think I'd have it in me to completely give up working. Give me a couple of months and I'll likely be itching to accomplish something. (What. A. Dork.) I just need the occasional trip to keep me sane. AMWSLAI, don't fail me now!

Monday, April 24, 2006


"The image of hatred and the other, a foreigner is neither the romantic victim of our clannish indolence nor the intruder responsible for all the ill of the polis. Neither the apocalypse on the move, nor the instant adversary to be eliminated for the sake of appeasing the group..."

It's too damn early to be reading this stuff, but here I am. My brain's still half-asleep so I'm having a hard time processing what I have to edit, but process it I must for there's a deadline to be met.

The things we do for a bit of extra income. I generally don't mind editing this publication--it does, after all, force me to read intellectually stimulating and sometimes challenging content--but it gets a little difficult when I'm exhausted from my day job. Plus, half the time, I feel like I don't completely understand what these theologians are trying to say. I think I've gotten better at it though (the same way I did at writing about the economy for my old job--who woulda thunk?). I remember going to ADMU and meeting the editor-in-chief, and she was so surprised to meet me. She said all this time she was expecting that all those bloody markings on the manuscript were made by an experienced old lady. Instead she met a punk in jeans and flipflops.

Delaying tactics again. I'd better get back to work. Will post again once I get my hands on some Bataan pics from this weekend.

Boo Monday!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Here I go again

Name Four Scents You Love
Stuff being baked, the smell of the beach, powdery scents, and H's neck :)

Name Four Things You Are Thinking About Now
My racket
Mumsy's meeting
Dance class

Name the Last Four Things You Have Bought
It's all food...a salad, the C3 meal at Jollibee...I...can't...remember.

Name Four Drinks You Regularly Drink
Water, iced tea, banana smoothie, pineapple-orange juice

Last Time You Said 'I Love You' And Meant It
Yesterday. I always mean it.

Last Time You Cried?

What's In Your CD Player?
An old CD BFF M made for me

What Color Socks Are You Wearing?
No socks, just my killer heels

What's Under Your Bed?
Four plastic storage bins with stuff I've accumulated

What Time Did You Wake Up Today?
6:30 am *groan*

Current Hair?
In a cheerleader ponytail

Current Clothes?
A top from Pam, my favorite Levi's jeans, my highest heels (the shoes I fell in love with and which, fortunately, went on sale!)

Current Desktop Picture?
A view of Sumilon from mainland Cebu

Current Worry?
Work. Just going with the flow...

Current Hate?
Hate is a strong word. I'm gonna say none. If you had asked me early last week, I woulda had an answer...

Favorite Physical Feature Of The Opposite Sex?
Arms. I used to get crushes on guys' arms. Haha.

Last CD You Bought?
I don't really buy CDs.

Favorite Place To Be?
M's house. Anywhere with H. The beach!

Least Favorite Place?
Waiting in line! I'm very impatient. Or at a sosyalan event where I'm forced to mingle.

If You Could Play An Instrument?
The harp. Seriously! I would've liked to have gotten really good at playing the drums though.

Favorite Color(s)?
Neutrals (I am such a boring person)--white, black, camel. Although I have a lot of blue in my wardrobe.

Do You Believe In An Afterlife ?

How Tall Are You?
Not tall enough. Hence the heels.

Current Favorite Word/Saying ?
Things don't have to be perfect for me to be happy. (I just thought of that. Hehe)

Favorite Season?
Christmas, if that season counts. It's nice and cool and not rainy.

One Person From Your Past You Wish You Could Go Back And Talk To
None that I could think of.

Favorite Day?
Used to be Friday, but it's turning into Sunday because that's when I get to see H. Saturday when there's dance prax.

Where Would You Like To Go ?
Back to Italy! I would like to visit Spain and Greece.

How Many Kids Do You Want ?
I'd like four, but I'm a bit concerned about the population growth (seriously!), so maybe two.

Favorite Car?
1956 Jaguar Roadster :)

Monday, April 17, 2006

Of meatless Fridays and Seventh Heaven marathons

I was so glad that we had four straight days of rest. I needed that, and was actually wishing that I had a couple more days. Other people could have their beach trips, Bora parties, and other out-of-town adventures--I was perfectly content staying home.

And no, I did not watch Seventh Heaven! I would've liked to veg in front of the TV with the Gilmore girls though, but had other plans. Mumsy and I made our way to Tagaytay, where we met H at Gourmet's. He treated mumsy to some halo-halo and me to some banaba iced tea (yum! Especially in that heat! Seriously, it's really bad this year!). Then we proceeded to the Pink Sisters, where H was one of the apostles at the reenactment of the washing of the feet! Haha. This was his holiest Holy Week yet. Hehe.

Mumsy and I got to church an hour before the mass started, so we were there for a grand total of three hours. Longest I've been in church in a long time. Later, we visited two more churches in the area before heading back home. Stopped over at Paseo de Sta. Rosa and ate at Poquito Mas (I'll be writing about it in my food blog soon). Yum. The food was great, but I was really happy about hanging out with mumsy. We ended up staying there for about two hours, just talking. I missed that.

The rest of the break was peppered with Visita Iglesia, a couple more masses, and a lot of reading. H came by at 1am on Sunday. We intended to go to Icebergs on Wilson to pig out on ice cream (mmm), but discovered that it had closed! Went back home and settled for some store-bought light ice cream. Good 'nuff. H fell asleep while I was watching some French film on cable. (Isn't it funny how any French film seems like an art film simply because it's in French? Haha. This one had a rather shallow plot, but the language made it seem so...profound.)

Later that day, got to see my bros and my sis-in-law. Later still, H and I went to Glorietta--he stuffed himself with yang chow fried rice at Superbowl, after being off it for 40 days. Afterwards, we went to his place where he promptly fell asleep on the couch. It was all good--whether he's awake or not, I still love being around him! Haha. Besides, I had my friends from CSI to keep me company.

And today is just another manic Monday. *sigh*

"Jesus is a rock..."

"...and he rolls my blues away..."

This ditty was playing over and over in my head all Holy Weekend long, even though I hadn't heard it since grade school (or was it early high school?). It's this blues-y tune that a CL teacher taught us years ago in class, complete with "Babashoobap, shoobap, whoo!" I can't figure out how it found its way into my head after so many years, but now that I think about it, it so aptly reflects how I currently feel.

I had every reason to keep on feeling grumpy--having to pay taxes that I didn't expect to have to pay (looong story. My accountant-for-life can explain it. Haha), being treated unfairly (another looong story, but I've just let it go!), waiting in line, waiting in the wrong line, having to commute back home and back to work again in the scorching heat... Getting a paper cut was the last straw! Aargh. I couldn't stand it anymore so I just...laughed.

I surprised myself. I would normally be wallowing in a few hours' worth of self-pity after a Murphy's Law-ish Monday morning (and a very stressful week last week), but instead, I found myself in a fairly good mood. A while later, I was walking back to the office, marveling at my uncharacteristic cheerfulness when it suddenly hit me: I was happy. I am happy. And I realized that things didn't need to be perfect for me to be happy.

I don't know what brought this about. I don't mean to be preachy or anything, I just want to let my friends know what's up. I think it's because I feel like I'm back on track. I think I kind of lost my way for a while, but I found Him again. Or maybe, most likely, He found me. I don't know if it's some sort of Holy Week holiness residue. I'm hoping not. But I just realized again how much I love Jesus. And He loves me. In fact, He loves me to death.

Happy Easter, everyone.:)

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Just a few more hours...

People who think my job is glamorous are so misguided. Haha. I blog about the fun stuff, sure, but really, it's not an endless romp. The past few days have been especially stressful, enough for me to sometimes wish that I just had a pile of management letters to edit and a newsletter to put together. I am so welcoming this coming break with open arms (and will be reluctant to let it go).

I'm not complaining. (Yeah, right.) Just wanted to let the people who are trudging through the busy season know that life outside the ol' buildings on Ayala isn't perfect either.

MC4 Disc Devils, I'm itching to play. Abandon dem financial statements for just one evening and let's head on over to Urda!

Monday, April 10, 2006

Isn't it great when you realize just how dependable some friends can be?

Thank you, panget. I owe you double cheeseburgers equivalent to my unpaid taxes.

The Gospel of Judas

What if the greatest story ever told were told from the villain's perspective?

Was intrigued by the National Geographic special about the Gospel of Judas. It was a two-hour show about how the 1,700-year-old codex was found (and sold and stolen and finally restored). For more on the show, check out the National Geographic website. You can also read a story about it in this New York Times link.

Just some interesting points that I got from the show:
  • It is illegal in Germany to name your child "Judas."
  • The portrayal of Judas may have indirectly contributed to anti-Semitism throughout the centuries.
  • Judas becomes increasingly evil from the earliest gospel (Mark) to the latest (John, where he is pretty much portrayed as Evil personified).
  • Judas is shown as a sort-of hero in the gospel of Judas. While the author/s of the gospel is/are unknown, it is likely that the origin of the text is the gnostics. The gnostics believed that the spirit is imprisoned by the body, and that death releases one's spirit. Thus, Jesus' death was seen as a good thing, and Judas' "betrayal" was crucial as it liberated Jesus from his "prison." The text also portrays Judas as the disciple closest to Jesus, in fact instructed by Jesus to sell his master out--so Judas was merely doing what he was told.
  • The text is more of a narrative, rather than an account of the historical Jesus or the historical Judas.
  • More than anything, the gospel of Judas shows that there wasn't a single unified form of Christianity in the first hundred years after Jesus' resurrection.
I've often wondered about God's plan, and how Judas' supposed betrayal fit into that. At the last supper, Jesus did say that one at the table would betray him--and Jesus, being the omniscient God, spoke of it as fact. So was Judas predestined to betray him? And if so, is he to burn in hell for something he was predestined to do? Of course there is the whole matter of free choice, and that he could have chosen not to betray Jesus. But then Jesus' revelation would not have been fulfilled.

The dork in me has so many questions and such a desire to understand, not completely (because I'm not conceited enough to think that's actually possible), but at least a little more. The rest I leave to faith.

For similar interesting shows, tune in to National Geographic's Secret Bible Week from April 30 to May 6.

Friday, April 07, 2006

I realized something about myself recently: I'm quite protective when it comes to my friends. Sometimes we're able to see things better as an outsider, and, unblinded by an attachment to the situation, believe that a friend is about to make a huge mistake. Over the years, I've learned that people are going to do what they want to do (no matter how brilliant or insightful my--or anyone else's--words of wisdom are) and that they tend to listen only to what they want to hear. So I generally steer clear of giving unbidden advice, and resist the urge to grab a friend by the shoulders and shake him/her back to reality. Which is not to say that friends don't see me roll my eyes or purse my lips. It sucks being this transparent.

I'm in a bit of pain now seeing my friend struggling with something, and my tongue is getting raw from all my biting. I hate feeling helpless, knowing that all I can do is stand aside and hope against hope that I'm wrong.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Almost famous

We launched Real Home Ideas on April 4 at Powerbooks in Greenbelt and I must say, the experience was a little...surreal. Apart from the fact that I was in a pretty sundress (something I had been longing to buy for ages, and the launch gave me the perfect excuse to finally do so) and fully made up (now there's something you don't see every day) courtesy of Marie Claire's lovely beauty ed, people were actually asking for our autographs! I've had mock book- (or magazine-) signing sessions before, but it was all just people from my old office; this time it was total strangers. The first time someone thrust the book and a pen into my hands, I just gave her a puzzled look. "Are you serious?" I asked her. She was. Thankfully, I came up with a fitting generic dedication, none of the usual crap that I struggle to write: "Keep it real." Haha.

Before that, we were all on stage as people from the audience asked us questions. While the others gave splendid answers, I just looked on rather stupidly. I think a few people might've noticed my face light up though when I saw H walk in. Wasn't expecting him to make it and was just thrilled that he did, even if for just a few minutes. Was also quite touched that true friend Mona, Ms. Vicky, Titus, Mr. Mally, Mr. Wilz, Robin (yes, Robin!), and Lord Bobby actually went. And my mom won a prize! (No, it wasn't rigged.)

When the whole thing was over, Miguel, Amils, and I joined Issa, her mom, her honey, and her friends at Kroc. And as if the sisig, crispy pata, garlic rice, and Bicol express weren't enough, Miguel and I ended up going to Breton after. By the end of the night, my new sundress, which had been a little loose earlier in the day, was actually kind of snug. At least my makeup was still flawless.

Photo shows me with Amillah, Issa, and Coni. I am so in love with this dress. Haha.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

"We're not the same, we're different tonight..."

For someone who considers herself a bit anti-social (or, at least, a bit of an anti-socialite), I've sure been going out a lot lately. Or perhaps it was just last weekend. I've noticed that there's usually one night a month when I do the party rounds, while for the rest of the month, I stay home and veg. The good thing about this is my conversation skills need to be on point for just one evening; the bad thing is, I don't get to spend as much time catching up with people I really wanna catch up with--the perils of being a social moth.


Friday night had me going to three little events. First, I headed on over to BSA in Makati, this serviced apartment-type place along Legaspi, to meet up with the volleybelles (my first volleyball team in my old office). Upon stepping out of the elevator, I could already hear the noise coming from the suite--a good 15 meters away, behind closed doors! That's what you get for putting about 20 women, videoke, and booze in one room.

Next, I had to rush to Ponti. (It's strange how some people seem to think I'm a gimik girl when, in fact, this was probably only my third or fourth time at Ponti. The fact that I can actually still count the number of times I've been there should tell you something.) It was Cathy's despedida, and BFF Ching and I felt like we were the mama-sans, being the oldest cheerdancers there. Met Carlo, Chingy's *eherm* companion. Didn't stay long, didn't even have a drink. Realized how long it had been since I last went out-out when my eyes started watering after a few minutes of exposure to all that cigarette smoke.

Afterwards, I went to Tim's place for his and Summer's joint birthday bash. This was more my thing--there were only a few guests, head-bobbin' music (but not so loud that we had to yell to have a conversation), and major pig-out food. We actually took our positions around the dining table where we had easy access to the casserole, chicken, rice crispy treats...*drool* Randy and Yeshua told us about their AR audition video, and we got a kick out of telling them about the death-defying Dance Idol number. Also got to see Primero after so long.

And even with three parties, I was home before 2am!


Was up bright and early to pull out from a bunch of stores. Was doing a racket for Seventeen, something I totally stressed over (it's a long, boring story so never mind). After getting all the stuff that I needed, I headed to the studio. Walked in in full trapo mode--cut-off shorts, ratty old shirt, hair in a ponytail--and was greeted by a woman who seemed thrilled to see me. "I'm sorry, do I know you?" I asked in as polite a way as possible. I'm really bad with names and faces but I was sure I had never met her before. She laughed and Tito Ocs said, "Magpakilala ka kasi muna!" Her name was Pia and she was styling something for Marie Claire. One of the girls didn't show up and would I please take her place? She seemed nice, and I figured she wouldn't let it go (plus I would get a P3,000+ product), so I agreed. My racket was delayed 'coz I had to get my hair and makeup done; my Seventeen photog Miguel kept sniggering as Ocs took photos. Grr. Couldn't do anything though 'coz I already made him wait, plus he helped me a great deal during the shoot (he's picked up a few styling tips from Issa over the years it seems). Will repay him by setting him up with our beloved EA...

After the shoot, I had to return some of the stuff I pulled out. This is one reason we need a "real" man in our staff--as our stylist would say, "Pagod na akong magbuhat ng sofa!" So I didn't have to carry a major piece of furniture that day, but was tired nonetheless. Got home and tried to take a power nap before my ex came over. Yes, yes, we're friends (di ba? Hehe). He just brought over his copies of Lost (season 2) 'coz I've been missing a lot of episodes lately. (Anyone know when the reruns on AXN are?) We spent a few minutes catching up before I had to get ready for dinner.

Met up with my other BFF M and bronzebeauty P at Cibo in Promenade, and we just talked. No loud music, no alcohol, no anything--just great food and even better conversation, and it was probably the most fun I'd had that weekend.. The two were unloading their boyfriend woes, and I couldn't control my jaw at some points, I felt like it just kept dropping to the floor. It was just a bit strange hearing how complicated other relationships could be. Then they turned to me and asked, "And how are you?" Caught off-guard and slightly embarrassed that I had no complaints to bring to the table, I said, "Um...I'm ok...." It's similar to the times I and a bunch of dancers would complain about what's wrong with our bodies ("I didn't have this back in college!" while pinching a bit of flab or slapping the sides of our thighs) and Summer would look on, munching on a burger, perfectly content with her physique. Or that scene in Mean Girls where Lindsay Lohan says, "Ummm...I have really bad breath in the morning."

Had to leave ahead of the girls to go to a party (*sigh*), and as I beso'd them, they said, "Tell Hamil he's perfect," and "Tell him he's my idol," "and that you're very lucky to have him." Indeed I am.

Much as I wanted to stay with my girl friends, I was quite excited to go to the party, if only to see H. It had been days since we last saw each other, and our relationship was kind of turning into a pseudo-long distance one (I was in Cebu, he was in Galera. Or Silang. Or Baguio). We spent a few minutes outside the party, just talking and catching up and just being together. (I'll spare you the cheese-fest.)

It was our friend's 50th birthday (another long story...), and so the room was filled with people who were practically my dad's age. As some smoke drifted from the 50-somethings' side of the room, Sandy (with her blessedly wide-eyed innocence) asked, "Is that tobacco?" Amused, I looked at her and said, "Guess again." She looked at me with even wider eyes and said, "But they're oldies!" Hahaha. You can't help but love that girl.

Exhausted, I left early (surprise, surprise), went home, and finally went to bed. And got about 10 hours' sleep. Aaahhh.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Little Miss Philippines

Found this pic in Jonbada's multiply site, taken during one of the concerts. I just realized that I'm the only girl in this picture and I can't for the life of me remember how that happened, 'coz there were a few other girls in this dance.

Reminded me of this time we danced for Blue Christmas--there were four of us and I was the only girl in the group. We did Talking to You (a dance I had to learn in, like, a day), and, being the lone female, I was pretty much at the center of every blocking. How very Little Miss Philippines. A little over a year later, I received the alumni calendar, and lo and behold, there was a little pic of me and the boys, taken during that event. And for the rest of the year I was known as Calendar Girl.

Recently, another photo cropped up in a weird place--a friend texted that he saw me in FHM (!). It was just a tiny pic in the editor's note, a group pic with the other "cheerleaders" who performed at the office Christmas party. Thankfully, it wasn't the one where I had the exag cheerleader smile (Vaseline and all). It sucks being un-photogenic because I end up getting a bit panicky when I hear that my pic appeared somewhere.

Thank goodness I'm not famous.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Wow Philippines 2006: Cebu (Part 2)

Gak. Been so busy the past week that I've barely had time to even check my mail, much less blog. But all that's for another entry.

So anyway, there we were on the boat on the way to Sumilon, and the first thing that struck me was the color of the water; it was a thousand different shades of blue and it was just sparkling. Ten minutes later, we set foot on the island. An attendant rushed to give us umbrellas to shield us from the midday sun--just one of the things that told me that this was a rather considerate resort, something I truly appreciate. (Later, I would discover that we had free insect repellant in the bathroom to protect us from sand flies, and that we would be given walking sticks as we went on a hike around the island.)

We had five rooms in all (two people to a room), each one with two queen-size beds, a TV with no cable (coming soon), a DVD player, and a spacious bathroom. I shared room 5 with Tin from SP.

Unlike the group that came before us (one of our competitors), our days on the island weren't filled with work-related shoots. It was just three days of R&R. The highlights:

The glass-bottom boat ride
Saturday morning, five of us hopped into the glass-bottom boat. Being terrified of deep water, I was perfectly content looking at the pretty marine life from there. Then Jeryc had a bright idea--he asked if anyone was willing to jump into the water and swim under the boat, so that he could take a pic of whoever through the glass. I had the even brighter idea of volunteering (word vomit!)--as long as we were in a shallow part.

So I did my thing, he got his pic, and I was ready to board the boat again. It was then that I discovered that the boat didn't have a ladder; I thus had to hoist myself up using nothing but pure muscle. It suddenly hit me that if I were dangling off the edge of a cliff, I would die. I have no upper body strength to speak of! The manong offered to help me, and using my foot as leverage, I was finally able to get back on the boat.

*Pant, pant.*

A few minutes later, standing on the bow, I felt a stinging sensation on my foot. Thinking it was a little scrape from the barnacles on the boat, I looked down and was shocked to find that my foot was spewing blood. Ok, not in a Quentin Tarantino way (as Gladys would say, I'm such a DQ!), but it was bleeding enough for me to leave a bit of a stain on manong's boat. Soaking my foot in seawater (yowch), I cleaned it up and found I had a two-inch gash and a few small cuts, all quite shallow, but enough to cause some discomfort while I walked. Oh well.

Hey, at least it was a nice picture.

After getting off the glass-bottom boat, went kayaking with Jeryc. It was all windy so I didn't even realize that it was noon, and that the sun was scorching. Ended up with a bit of a burn, but still, it was a relaxing ride--since I was with Mr. Men's Health himself, I didn't have to do much paddling. (Sorry dude. I did try to help, if only to burn off some of the calories from pigging out on torta...*shudder*)

The hike
After lunch, went on a hike around the island with the same four people I went on the boat with that morning. Not wanting to get a nasty tanline on my legs, I just put a tank over my swimsuit. (Days later, I showed H some photos and he said, "Nag-hiking kang naka-panty?!") It was a slightly difficult hike--the path was made of loose rocks and my foot still hurt from the morning adventure. Glen, art director that he is, would stop every now and then, telling us, "Picture kayo dyan, maganda ang ilaw."

We hiked to the baluarte, the ruins of an old fort (loved it! Loved it! Loved it!)--a very small enclosure with a tiny entrance (aahh, the advantages of being small), and trees growing inside. *Sigh* Beside it was a lighthouse, about 50 or 60 feet high. Jeryc attempted to climb it at first, but the higher rungs had been baking in the hot afternoon sun. When a few clouds rolled in, Angel attempted to climb, and made it all the way up. I decided to climb as well, and with each step I got a bit more nervous--there was no harness or railing whatsoever, just rungs stuck to the side of the lighthouse. It felt great once I made it to the top. Not only did I get a great view of the entire island (all 24 hectares of it), but I also felt like I accomplished something. Yay!

The massage
The others left to go snorkeling and diving. I just settled in one of the payag-payags to read. Towards dusk, I got me a massage. All I can say is, "Aahhhh."

The luau
We had a luau by the lagoon that night. We sat on big floor pillows on the sand, while a bonfire burned merrily nearby. Afterwards, it was videoke time. For some strange reason, "YMCA" got stuck in my head, and I only realized it when I had the strangest dream the other night--Chris, our tech dude (I know! HUH?), had a mic and was gamely singing--nay, performing--that song, backed up by Carlo and Gwyn, who were doing the steps! Really, don't ask. I won't be able to explain.

P.S. Em sounded exactly like Karen Carpenter!

Night swimming
It started drizzling so that ended the outdoor videoke session. So what was there to do but go swimming? I have no idea who thought of this; it was around 11 in the evening, and I had already taken a nice hot shower, but I decided to go along with it since I was a bit of an anti-social the night before (roomie and I turned in ahead of everyone else). Didn't regret it though-- after the first few minutes of shivering, had a blast. Perhaps because of Mimi's "ball of fun"!

Was a bit sad to leave the next day. I was a bit tamad to go a few days before we left, but I'm so glad that I did.

Gotta love this job.

Top photo by Angel. Group photo courtesy of Heidi.