First actual after-work night out with new friends.
I haven’t been on here quite a while. This overly familiar sun symbol right under the tumblr logo just killed me. Dang.
Thank you to everybody who left me messages in my inbox asking if I’m alright/alive. I’m super fine :’)
I sat at the back seat, looking
past tidy rows of street lamps
a steady humming;
low and controlled -
clearly keeping something from quavering,
almost a thin visible film
over cars driving along
with sure, quiet purpose.
The radio was up,
not a station with a single bad pop tune
instead a man or a woman
with quite a lot to say.
From where I sat I heard everybody
from inside the next car
to the tiny red dots
stark against the black horizon,
Take it from the Chinese
It’s funny my life’s “big” adventures so far always happen to coincide with the times in my life that I don’t have a camera with me. Last summer I had the chance to go to Laguna on my own for the first time and to Tagaytay with a couple of friends I just met over my internship and I didn’t even have a camera phone with me.
Over time I’ve developed the habit of collecting tiny bits of proof that those trips actually did happen; pressed flowers, notes, sometimes little bits of prose make their way too and if I’m really lucky — photos salvaged from friends’ mobile phones.
I never mean to be a sentimental packrat, I’m just one of the firm believers of the Chinese proverb that the palest ink is better than the best memory.
I guess it’s lucky that dad didn’t let me bring my camera that day we chased waterfalls in Dalipuga. The trip was pretty much a major thing for me that I actually tried to capture bits of it on paper.
I knew I had no reason to fuss because I was trekking with probably 10 cameras at the very least. However there’s something really obsessive about capturing something through your own eyes, the very viewpoint from right from where you stand. I don’t know.
Based on experience, it brings a much more vivid sense of nostalgia, sketches especially.
The one above is my quick sketch of the little stream connecting the three levels of Pampam falls featuring my friend Kate sitting in the middle of the stream after a cleverly concealed slip and two other friends in the background. Photo of the work in progress courtesy of Jeffrey Wong of www.gwapito.com
photos by Jam Jacosalem (traveljams.com)
For the last waterfall of the day I decided to attempt another quick watercolor while everybody went for their photo ops. We were really short on time because we had to be at somewhere before sunset so I guess I’ll get back to this when I’ll have a bit more than 20 minutes to sit down and paint.
The group suddenly came to a stop after a short trek and climb from Pampam falls. It felt like quite an awkward place to stop because there was barely enough room for all of us to stand even just at the awkward, perilous angles we were steadying ourselves at.
I felt a grin tugging at my cheeks when I hinted water from under the small cave which I also just noticed a split second earlier. I’ve never tried swimming through a cave before so there was a sudden flurry of my own trekking clothes in the air in no time.
Through and up the other end of the cave was the smaller than expected but charming all the same Kalubihon waterfalls.
I wish I brought a camera along because the rocks where the waterfall and the cave met were in really enchanting colors. They were almost exactly colored like one of the bloggers’ mermaid hair in turqoise hues, pale yellows and pinks.
The last time I remember hiking was labor day last May when a few friends and I decided to see what all the fuss surrounding Dodiongan falls was all about. It was mag-nificent by the way; quite the steal for an easy 20-minute hike.
Day 1 of the IBS Waterfalling Adventure Tour 2.0 took me and a happy bunch of backpacking bloggers from different parts of the Philippines to three different waterfalls in Kalubihon, Dalipuga conveniently named Kalubihon, Dalipuga and Pampam falls.
In between those three waterfalls were a lot of trekking. Up a few hills, down a few hills and over or across the tiniest streams with the occasional carabao dung to keep any hiker appropriately vigilant.
Before slipping into the trees and following the trail, we loaded up on fresh mangoes and a nice hot batch of puto maya. Actually, they did. I just kept my share in my bag - only to devour it when the group settled down for lunch. Something about the hike changed me. haha. The puto maya was surprisingly still pretty warm by the time I had it, though.
Moral of the story: never pass up any form of carbohydrate on hiking trips.
The first stretch of trekking was totally dry. We didn’t come across a waterform or any signs of it until the trail took us straight to our first waterfall which was Pampam.
Mhm. Right, yes, I can’t really judge and classify the type of climb and the levels of difficulty. My trekking prowess so far has only given me enough to grade terrain from an I can climb that level to a no can doodles.
They’re all can’s so far, see all the coolers we’re lugging. Trick I guess is to stop every once in a while to catch your breaths and talk with the people in front and behind in the trail to make the hike fly by.
I discovered I really like hiking. The whole time, I felt like I was in some Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros song.
(continued in next post)
Joining in the bandwagon! This may just be the most fashionable thing I’ve ever worn.
Tell the truth this is the most serene I’ve felt in quite a while now. Yesterday was such a burnout I slept like a baby and rolled out of bed quarter to 10 am. 10 AM (my parents have practically been terrorizing us if we dared going beyond 8 or 9 for all I can remember) and mom, dad, my sister and I had lunch at a family friend’s restaurant where I nicked black raspberry Twinnings off dear miss Janet before heading out to vote.
Surprisingly, it only took me less than a fifteen minute wait to get a ballot if you don’t count my 30 minutes of looking for my precinct because I forgot my number. hihi.
If you haven’t yet been able to exercise your right to vote, do make a mental note of having some way to remember your precinct number when you register and going at around lunch time or the early afternoon when voting. The place will be a ghost town.
May 1, 2013
My cousins and I patrolled the city last night after the worst of the rain. Not more than a year ago it was me and dad, driving out early in the morning to where Sendong hit worst. It was a bit of a relief to step out of the car without that eerie stillness that clung to the air a year ago. That kind of air that doesn’t actually smell like anything yet but you just know will in a few hours because of the oddly still body parts your untimely heightened peripheral vision just makes you not miss.
It was awful talking to the people watching the rivers swallow their homes up again. Not even a year to mourn neighbors and loved ones in peace.
The photos you see are from when the water has already come down a bit.
Borough: The Restaurant That Never Sleeps
After our pitch at McKinley Town Center last Wednesday, my team mates and I went out to see my bald dearie before leaving for home the following day. We decided to meet halfway at Ortigas for a late bite after her training and I was more than delighted finding this place open in the dead of night.
And I realized my new favorite thing about Manila - 24/7 comfort food. From the same people who brought you Ponti and Fiamma, here’s Borough!
I don’t know if it’s just the name but a lot about the aesthetics of its humble facade that told me point blank that it serves New York style food. The dark and damp alley, the dim light, the podium and the sharp looking bouncer from the adjacent establishment, the lone signage - looks ripped right from an episode of Sex and the City.
Inside, it looks just like a rustic bachelor’s pad but the floral print couches and bar stools will confuse you… with how well it seems to work with everything else.
(clickthrough for source of above photo)
I love chancing upon going on a Wednesday because it’s their busy night. The ambiance is great. The place was packed and the other tables’ appropriately modulated murmur against the DJ’s music made me feel alive and relaxed. It was almost soothing. I read there’s a smoke area upstairs with mafia-inspired seats.
Now, the fun part! Here’s a look at some of the food we ate. Lights, please.
I honestly forgot what they were called but we ordered chips, fries, grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup which I think was imported… from heaven and my glorious sandwich. I remember it had grilled chicken, generous slices of Brie cheese, sundried tomatoes, basil, lettuce, and mushrooms.
Down to business: prices are relatively high. The least you’ll prolly get a way with for a bite and a drink is around Php300 and they have service charges on top of that. But they serve big portions and the flavors are just lovely.
But if you’re passionate about fresh bread and cheeses other than cheddar and mozzarella, and tomatoes and don’t spend on much else other than food when on a splurge, it’s definitely worth one’s salt.
Ground Floor, The Podium Mall
Ortigas Center, Pasig City
Tel. No. 570-8906