Showing posts from 2013

The lull

When it comes to shopping, I am happiest among books, shoes, and vintage stuff. This week I did books.

Exploring book covers is so much fun. The hours just fly.

Kinokuniya, Siam Paragon

A special place to browse and buy books: inside a ship. I loved it then; I'm enjoying the memory now.
Skywatch: Logos Hope

Weekend teas with books in places like this make the afternoons lovely.

Reflections:  around Agalico

Active culinary department: in most parts of the Philippines Christmas begins as soon as the months start ending in 'ber' so that's September for us. And then in December, right when Christmas parties in schools are over, it's non-stop cooking in kitchens at homes, at least in homes I know. Food, glorious food. But right now it's something simple.

I call this the lull
Clam chowder soup in a bread bowl from Au Bon Pain

I must have mentioned this in previous faves and joys posts that I would be home for Christmas this year. By Friday next week I will not be in Bangko…

To the suburbs we go

An activity in the academic calendar was not translated to English for me to adjust the course outline in time. Someone's syllabus is going to be shaken up.... The thought of sitting for hours through untranslated details bothered me but then -

Reflections: weekend dinner view
It turned out we would join the main campus (of Thonbury University) in celebrating ASEAN Day which means no stressing over multiple regressions, figure interpretations, stuff like that for a day. A much welcome break!

A trip that involves feeling like being in the country or at least signs that some countryside is close by is great in my books. Skyscrapers and crazy traffic disappearing as the bus speeds to the suburbs - ah! My excitement was like To Grandma's House We Go.

Skywatch: homeward bound
Speeches, a quiz bowl, food fair and demos later, I found a spot to wait for students to get into the buses that would take us back to the city.

Water World: Electrical Engineering Department pond

This is oppo…

Ukulele festival

Organized by Ribbee Boutique Ukulele Paradise, the third Thailand Ukulele International Festival took place at Siam Paragon in October 2013. I just happened to be passing by. But the instrument reminds me of those afternoons under a Balimbing tree with a cousin who taught me to play a few chords. I wished the piano, which I hated at the time (lessons and practice sessions were stealing play hours), were as easy as you only needed to learn a few chords and you're accompanying someone singing several songs.

The artists in this festival played complicated tunes I never heard before. It was fun.

Do you play the ukulele or have one at home?

ABC Wednesday Our World

THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts!

Tacloban. It's where I spent two months of great adventure with college buddies at about the same age as the young adult artists in this video

 We Are The World for Philippines (Cover by Filipino Artsts)
This is the church where I served as piano accompanist for the 1990 summer student choir, and some of the services. According to reports it was filled with dead bodies when this shot was taken.
Photo Courtesy: AUP Network on FB

On Saturday, November 24th, Central World management (the former WTC Bangkok) lent space for a Haiyan fundraiser without charge. I'd like to commemorate the highlights:

One Voice: Help Haiyan Victims was a serendipity. Organizing events is something I had to pay money to study in grad school. But it was live learning right there that night and observing the process was free.

Skywatch: Mission Tacloban
The Bangkok Charity Orchestra  reflected tranquilityin their music. Poor typhoon victims would benefit from melodies that aretender and soothing to the so…

Flowers rule

Wherever they are, flowers are flowers. Pretty - on a branch, a watering can, a vase or even on a cage;

lovely on a bike or on a girl's head. They're a joy to behold.
~ niece ~

Linking with Share the JoyWater World , Ruby Tuesday Too , Our World

Learning from tragedy

Super typhoon Haiyan teaches me a few things. They make up the highlights of my week -

Realization that it could happen to anyone. Not that I welcome something terrible, but it's better to be prepared for an eventuality the best way possible.

A keener sense of gratitude for the fact that my family is all right and no one I know is hurt. Two years ago we went to this island for a reunion. I cherish the memories now more than ever.

Appreciation for things usually taken for granted. I barely noticed these skies above our rental resort until I had to watch the Haiyan destruction -
Skywatch: the family reunion sky

Urgency to help. It's probably due to awareness of issues around donations or charity work that I tend to find out a few details first before I get involved. This time I extend whatever I can without question. I'll give give give - just spare my loved ones.
Giving up some comfort for a time; deliberately not hanging out in places like this -
Mellow Yellows: TWG tea can
I lo…


In the context of the devastation brought by Haiyan, different sources call the Filipinos resilient. The Daily Mail, UK quotes US President Obama:
"I know the incredible resiliency of the Filipino people, and I am confident that the spirit of Bayanihan will see you through this tragedy."Bayanihan, a word I never heard, used nor thought of in quite awhile, more or less two decades. It's nice to be reminded of a reference to 'communal unity and cooperation.' Honestly I don't remember being ever seriously sure what resilience really means until I gaped in horror at the TV this weekend. Let me reflect a bit:

"Resilience, the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties"
I have great memories of adventure in Tacloban, an island city hit the worst by Haiyan. Happy to be out of boarding school for the summer, Tacloban was the perfect place for an 18 year-old to explore. But now aside from not having any photos of my own, I don't think anyone needs more…

Sit on a story and rub shoulders with tea

Anyone who needs a blue-sky holiday, please raise your hand.

There goes mine.

Holidays spoil us, don't they? At least that's one thing they do with me. Wasn't it only weeks since that quick romp in the Lion City? And now I'm planning the next one -

Skywatch: Far Far Away
- over tea. It started when an FB friend in Salzburg suggested, 'Sis, how about a literary tour in five years? Europe? Fatten up the piggy.' Automatically I said why not.

So I just gave myself a lot to keep boredom at bay. Stock investing and PhD were prominent as I alternately gaze out the garden and on its reflection on my sunglasses. They should be worth engaging in while the five years roll.

Weekend Reflections: garden on shade
'Our thirst for tea is never far from our craving for beauty,' says James Norwood Pratt. I like the idea.

Meanwhile I can't believe my dean approved another leave - the third one this year, flight is confirmed which means >

I'll be home for Christm…

Qrookshanqs joins a quorum of witches

Prologue: Thailand's Supreme Patriarch is dead.  The whole kingdom is in mourning mode. And that also means Khaosan Road, a usual party venue, is shut down. Parties go on though but behind closed doors and kept as private and quiet as possible. And that's how -

Qrookshanqs ignores Ermione and wanders into Medusa's cave...
 xxx xxx
She comes as Grumpy Cat,
tries not to forget who she is.
Qrookshanqs is convinced that those are Nagini's ancestors on Medusa's head, and thinks what a waste of cauldron time taking photos is
A smiling one joins them and the quorum is complete. Soon they chant eye of newt, toe of frog... lizard's leg and howlet's wing. Qrookshanks, ever the grief sucker, grumbles how do witches "boil and bake" fillet of a fenney snake or wool of batat the same time? Anyone?
No one huh? Alright, grumpy mood intensifying nicely...
Until the party is peaking and she starts smiling, ruining her stance. Now she's gone queer.

Ladybugs and choirs

It's another day to count faves and highlights. Here are mine this week -

A ladybug visited me. What a cute surprise! It's the first time I saw one that was not on a leaf or flower but on my very pillow so I cherished the moment. It hopped on some books (I read in bed) before flying out the porch. As a kid I loved watching ladybugs in our little garden. They're some of my favorite creatures.

All Free Download
Ma leads her group (all widows except one) to win first place in a provincial level choir competition. I found out on Facebook, thanks to a friend. So that's why she seemed unable to talk long when I rang last week. They were practising. Sometimes I get a bit annoyed that I find out first from other people, but okay, I get it - it's her way of teasing and she's fun like that.

Mellow Yellows
Grandparents' Day celebration in church. It felt nostalgic looking at photos and reading comments of their children who I went to church with. How time flies! Yesterday…