21 May 2013

Ship-seeing to Sichang

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 case it would seem to me that the person the Taiwanese government should be venting its anger has a Taiwanese travel document"

A former schoolmate's fantasy of the Philippines' first line of defense got me googling and then supposing that there's nothing noticeable enough. Chihuahua :(  But then the matter of war could be a long shot for the golden retriever. My hands grip the leash as I walk away and turn my attention to something sea-ish, like ships, the cargo, tanker, normal ones.

Join me in my little boat trip to Sichang, a tourist island in the gulf of Thailand, and see some ships.

~ shore of Sriracha ~

 ~ small mountain of sand in the middle of the sea ~


Here's hoping Taiwan didn't attack while we were ship-seeing. 'PEACE be still.'

16 May 2013

Mother's day high tea

This whole tea idea was unplanned. Things were hectic at work. Besides, the son is with Grandma in the home country. But a friend was greeting her Mom friends on FB, I was tagged on cards a couple times and it looked like people were bent on making the day something you wouldn't forget easily.  Well, they show me. I love celebrations so it didn't take long for me to decide that I was having tea after all.

I picked Coffee Beans by Dao, a posh cafe in a posh mall to celebrate Mother's Day with a girl friend. She's not a Mom but her niece just had a baby and that according to her makes her a Grandma. Sweet. I believe in treating the self from time to time, and of course it is such joy to have a friend to celebrate special occasions with.

The Moroccan mint tea (on collage) was a welcome taste as it was my first since 2010. Blueberry cheese cake is the specialty of the house and that's what I had. Yum!

Why does food look so inviting right after work? Yeah... work hard, party hard.

Or maybe it's just me. I'm a fan of food and I love to eat. I even like saying that ;)

07 May 2013

Quiapo Church

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.

29 April 2013

Parasailing in Pattaya

I always fancied parasailing (or parascending or parakiting). Usually a boat tows the person harnessed to the parasail. I was towed by a jetski, as were the others who took this fun ride. The tour started in Pattaya where we took a boat to Coral Island. About 15 minutes out in the sea we made a stop to parasail.


09 April 2013

On a blogging hiatus

First, my internet went off for a week, and this week it's my turn to go off. Headed out of town to some place I haven't been to yet. Here's hoping things turn out for the best. Happy Songkran to my Thailand friends. A great April to bloggity friends around the world.

26 March 2013

King Narai mystique

The museum at King Narai palace in Lopburi closes half past four.  We were late. But the ruins outside the inner palace gate were perfect for the time we arrived- less than thirty minutes to five. Sunset was approaching. We were among the few visitors who loitered behind. We couldn't have chosen a more wondrous time to be there.

A resident mystique envelopes relics of the past, especially those that enjoyed splendor in their day. We explored in peace.

Trying to get an idea of what was in store the next day, I peeped through the slit on the huge gate: outlines of edifices even bigger than the skeletal remains standing on the outer grounds, still proud.

The shadows lengthen as the sun hurried west. Waxing meditative is easy when ruins speak to you

I imagine a wedding here at night aglow with fireflies. Lotuses gliding on the pond, chimes in the soft breeze, real fairies for bride's maids....

22 March 2013

Lights, camera, emotions and cut!

If you dined at Sometime's Cafe & Bistro, you do so surrounded with books and antiques. What I remembered while admiring old decor at Sometime's is the same as when I saw one feature of this week's Sepia prompt: cameras.

My Aunt Rebecca is a widow who raised a brood of nine on her husband's photography business. Endeared to the device that played an important role in their survival, one of her grandsons was named Yashica.

Something during Aunt Rebecca's husband's funeral always made me wonder why it was like that. No one in the family ever discussed it. I suspect it's because everyone thinks her crying got a bit out of control. Once I took my mother aside to wring out her opinion of her sister's behavior, and she frankly observed that her sister's display of emotions was rather exaggerated.

The scene at that wake must have created different emotions among those present. This pen and ink Study in Emotions by Charles Le Brun shows Aunt Rebecca's grief - third face from the left, first row above.

Do you see any of your emotions in the photo? 

Third one to the right, bottom row is my facial expression when trapped in something boring but obligatory. Meanwhile a variety of emotions swirls around the latest drama of a national hero's daughter. Everyone is either tired or annoyed. Some are smirking, some cursing, some just don't give a damn and yet some are stoic to the whole thing. Personal issues, no matter how prominent the individual or how many times their Dad's face is printed on the country's currency, should be managed in a way the entire nation does not have to watch it on prime time TV.

The ongoing national brouhaha is portrayed well right in Charles Le Brun's work!
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