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Showing posts with the label Philippines

Villa de Oro

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V is for Villa de Oro, a beachfront accommodation in Boracay. Come on in!

xxx xxx xxx and how's this for a view while dining on seafood?

The shirt is right - life's a beach. I mean I cherish the nice moments in life.

Water World
Mrs Nesbitt & the ABC Team
Our World
Sally's Blues
Mellow Yellows

Lake Sebu

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Lake Sebu is a municipality.  It is also a natural lake which helps other bodies of water provide irrigation to Sultan Kudarat and South Cotabato, two provinces in the southern Philippines. The place is recognized by the Philippine government as a prime eco-tourism destination and an important watershed.

This is Punta Isla, one of several resorts around the lake.  I hear it is popular. Most tourists flock here to have brunch and relax after visiting other sightseeing spots like the seven waterfalls or riding a zip line.


You descend on stone steps to reach the cottages below

I saw this huge bloom along the way

My kiddos watch some lake activity while lunch is prepared

We then took a boat trip around the lake.

Visit: Mrs Nesbitt and the ABC Team * My World * Ruby Tuesday Too

Life in the slow lane

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As if the delay of my passport release was not enough, the office of Academic Affairs emailed to remind me that my work license was expiring. So much for being happily stuck at home, sweet home. I should probably start pleading for a miracle. There had to be something to make up for this black cloud over my holidaying head. I tried looking around and it's wonderful to find joys and faves despite all this trouble.

Ever tried going around looking for something you fancy eating in a downpour? Life in the slow lane. You can afford time to do what you want the way you want it. It was like stepping back into a world where deadlines don't exist. No alarm clocks. No meetings. Just friendly vendors selling fruits under trees in front of their houses.


Tuesday I sorted out a couple of beneficiary issues on my health insurance. If you are familiar with how paperwork is done in the Philippines, you would consider yourself lucky if you got things done in one go. This time I did and to celeb…

Camp Mariano

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Camp Mariano is a summer camp along the Pan-Philippine Highway to Koronadal in South Cotabato.


Next to the camp entrance is where locals or visitors to the province spend lovely afternoons -


enjoying a dessert called buko salad

Buko is a Filipino word for young coconut. There are variations among ingredients. This one includes ube ice cream and jam, sweet banana and leche flan.

Around Camp Mariano are little huts selling coconut vinegar and salted fish; root crops like camote (sweet potato) and turnip.

The sign on the tree house says "Live Christ, Share Christ." Having lived in a Buddhist country for 16 years now, I felt a bit strange but cheerful reading that. And then I knew something: I was reconnecting with Christian culture. I was home.

Linking with ABC Wednesday * Blue Monday * Mellow Yellows

More laughter than tears

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It has been raining a lot in my part of the world. There have been storm signals again. We are crossing our fingers. I take a walk around the neighborhood.

i. Everything smells fresh

Water World ii. Sunshine bathes the plants


iii. In the afternoon, grey skies appear again. But as a pluviophile I have fun thinking, "ta-ta it looks like rain..."

Skywatch
The next day I sort out a little problem with my passport. Having it replaced takes time. I re-book my return flight to Bangkok twice. This 'glitch' is causing issues at my job though I choose to be optimistic. Whatever happens I hope I am ready.

iv. So here comes Mr. Helpful of the Department of Foreign Affairs. He appeals my case in the Manila office and apologizes profusely for the delay although it's not his fault. That is enough for me. I am grateful for the positive attitude, and I celebrate that with a choco harmony treat.

(Aunt Ludi, Robinson Gensan)
v. I'd like to share these words, and a picture that my inne…

Boracay

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Boracay is a resort island in the Philippines, administered by the Philippine Tourism Authority and the province where it belongs - Aklan. The island is approximately 196 miles south of Manila. I visited it on a whim in 2013, a year after it was awarded, among several other awards, the best island  in the world by Travel + Leisure, an international travel magazine.
"Apart from its white sand beaches, Boracay is also famous for being one of the world's top destinations for relaxation. It is also emerging among the top destinations for tranquility and nightlife." (Wikipedia) Ruby Tuesday



Blue Monday

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Mellow Yellows

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Linking with ABC WEDNESDAY

Resilience

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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…

Ship-seeing to Sichang

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There is tension between Taiwan and the Philippines over the recent shooting of a Taiwanese fisherman by a Philippine coastguard. Taiwan retaliates; rejects apology from the Philippines, impose sanctions, threatens Manila with naval drills in the South China Sea, goes arrogant, eg. compares themselves to a golden retriever, the Philippines a chihuahua in the event of an attack. Wait. I love dogs. My ears are on alert mode, though I didn't have time to find how the shooting took place, there's an identical twin of my wondering through an FB comment by Mike San Agustin Mccrea

"if a vessel is required to stop for a coastguard inspection in its national (usually 12mile) limit, and refuses to do so the coastguard is entitled to take such action as is necessary to stop the vessel. If it does not stop after a warning [shop], it seems fully justified to fire on the vessel.... If someone gets shot it is the fault of the skipper of the offending vessel.... So if this is the …

Quiapo Church

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More formally known as the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene or Saint John the Baptist Parish, Quiapo Church was founded in 1586 by Governor General Santiago de Vera in Quiapo, Manila.


As a third grader I would look at a picture of Quaipo church in a Social Studies textbook and would often wonder how true were those 'extra' stories of crowds walking to and fro on a break of pews or right at the doorstep while mass was going on.

Finally after thirty-one years two weeks ago I saw the place for myself; people conducted business in front, and not inside as I worried. It was also my first time to set foot on a Roman Catholic church since Grandpa's funeral mass in the mid 1990s.

ABC Wednesday

Pineapples through a moving window

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Dole Food Company, the largest producer of fruits and vegetables in the world, is headquartered in Westlake Village, California. The company has operations in 90 countries, my home country, the Philippines included. A drive from General Santos City to Tupi, a town known as the fruit basket of Mindanao, (international word association: Osama bin Ladin's al Qaeda) would give you pineapples as your major sight during the travel.
Dole Philippines, with offices in Polomolok, is the 3rd largest producer of pineapples globally.

These are private fruit growers putting up shop along the highway. They are also selling some Dole pineapples. Right behind these shops is Dole's vast pineapple plantation. This was one of those yearly trips home when we made a stop (from the GSC airport) at these shops to buy supersweet MG3 pineapples, bananas, jackfruit, guyabano, lanzones, mangoes, avocados, and other tropical fruits.


Find more stories on Sepia Saturday This post is also linked with Time Tra…

Little blue church

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"No spot is so dear to my childhood as the little brown church in the vale."
My first grade class used to sing that song and it kept playing in my head as I approached this church. It's blue though and not in the vale, but along a highway in the South Cotabato countryside. The family who owns the plot of land where it stands built it. It is surrounded by coconuts and fruit trees.
Inside a few of us gathered for dear Miss Arcon's funeral. She was the head of a group of schools run by the SDA church. A good Christian, well-loved by her students, friendly yet professional to us teachers under her leadership, I was grateful for the coincidence of being in the country when she passed away, and for the opportunity to pay my last respects. 
Our World - Blue Monday

Umbel

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Umbel is "a mass of flowers springing from a single center." (The Phrontistery) The Science Dictionary defines it as "aflatorroundedindeterminateinflorescence inwhich theindividualflowerstalks(calledpedicels)arisefromaboutthesamepointonthestematthetipofthepeduncle." Umbel is a new-to-me word. I'm marking a few things I learned about it:

the flowers at the center of inflorescence are the youngestthe lower of outer flowers bloom firstgeranium, milkweed and onion have umbelsumbels come from latin umbella, meaning a sunshade (does 'umbrella' come to mind?)
I thought I would skip this week's U word, until I looked around to find examples of umbels and found a photo to show. As lantanas mature they change color "resulting in inflorescences (group or cluster of flowers on a stem) that are two- or three-colored." I found these lantanas along a pavement in a memorial park; I was visiting my father's grave in the Philippines


And these are lantanas…

Furry and juicy

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Our Weekend Memoirs: Roadside Fruit Stand
Scroll down for Sunday Stealing

Tupi is called the fruit basket of South Cotabato. It was only four months ago though that I really paid attention to the many fruits that I take for granted when I'm home. MG3, a pineapple label, is something new to me.

The is the fruit stand in Kablon, a barangay near Dole, the pineapple giant. I bought loads of avocados. They're quite pricey in Bangkok. Whereas in SC 5 USD go a long way.


We made several stops on our way home from the airport. This watermelon stand is in Gensan.

Luckily, people at home are fruit eaters. It's no fun to eat alone.

Click here for more OWM.

**************** Sunday Stealing: Another 50 Questions Meme, Part One (perhaps)

Today we ripped this meme of a blogger known as Nigel Vanstone at Away for a Bit. Nigel explains that he was tagged to do the meme, but does not credit the blogger. But, it was probably stolen there as well. So, of course, that will be as far as we go. Tracing b…