Nature, Travel Stories

Taal Volcano Stories: Clean-up Drive with Starstruck Avengers LOL!

I rub elbows with celebrities.

Just kidding!

I just happened to work as a segment producer and writer for a TV network years ago, a long time ago. And those celebrities that I got the chance to interact with were not really big stars but upcoming stars. Hahaha!

Our show was a Public Affairs program that helps communities with activities and projects through the power and influence of celebrities.

Since our show has a very low budget, we couldn’t afford the big stars. Most who would agree to our very low talent fee were those who wanted exposure like new celebrities, mostly past finalists of the network’s reality show, Starstruck!

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Inspiration, Travel Stories

Don’t listen to them. Just go to the beach

Note: This is originally an Instagram post, and I just want to share it on the blog.  

A year ago, I was in pain and in debt.

I lost my father with liver cancer and I hit rock bottom financially.

It was a time when I saw a social media post of an online friend who happens to be a financial advisor. She recruits and sells insurance, and pledges to be an advocate of “financial intelligence.” She had this generic photo of a girl on a beach with a caption that says something like, “You still managed to go to the beach, and you’re in debt?” with a LOL at the end.

I don’t know if she was just making a point, or mocking a friend. Or pointing about heradvocacy.” The thing is I wanted to be believe her.

But my gut feeling was telling me to do what I want to do.

Armed with my budgeting and backpacking skills, I embarked on occasional trips to the beach. Until now, I am still at awe at how I was able to pull it off, but I did.

jomalig Island beach
Jomalig Island

The beach cleared my mind, calmed my soul. It was not just a big help in coping up with the loss. I was able to ponder on my thoughts, brought back my belief in me.

I continued writing.

My blog opened up some writing gigs and opportunities to earn extra income.

The beach, its inspiration, helped me pay off my debts little by little.

I’m getting better each day. And if ever you’ll experience what I’ve gone through, I have one advice to you – don’t believe them.

You need to detach and relax from time to time. If you feel you need to go to the beach, go.

Just do what you want to do.

Don’t listen to them.


Luzon, Travel Stories

Fiesta in Masasa: When our transient house owner fed us with good food

They were all busy.

They decorated the house with this nice pink and pastel colors. I saw some girl outfit, gowns and make-up on the sofa. We didn’t know who to talk to. We just arrived at RNV House, the transient house that we contacted a few days before our trip to Masasa beach in Tingloy, Batangas.

When one of the household saw us, she immediately talked to us with her warmth and smile.

“Ay kayo po ba ng guest, ay sige po pasok po. Dito po kayo sa room. Pasensya na po ah fiesta po kasi ngayon. Eh magku-queen po kasi ang anak ni ate Neneth yung may-ari ng bahay. Kayo lang po ang tinanggap namin guest ngayon kasi po fiesta.”

She was too apologetic. I told her that’s okay. There was a parade that morning and they were all preparing for their queen’s gown and make-up. It’s nice to see how the entire household prepare, and how they treated us like we were part of them. Chill lang.

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Travel Stories, Visayas

Ridiculous! This Cebu Hostel is requiring 3 valid IDs,ONLY for Filipino travelers

It was already late at night when I arrived in Cebu.

I didn’t realize that it was hard to get a cab at the airport, so I used Grab. It was actually my first time to use the app. Yes, after years of making waves in the Philippines, it was only a few months ago that I’ve tried it. I didn’t even download the app on my phone. I sought the assistance of a Grab personnel at the airport to book a car for me. I know, I am so oldies. Hahaha!

So that’s it. I got on the car and told the driver my hostel and the address.

When I arrived at the hostel, it was already like a few minutes before 11PM. With all my huge backpack and all, I went straight to the reception. 

I told them that I booked online. While the reception dude was looking for my booking, he asked for my ID. So I gave him my company ID because my driver’s license is already expired and left it at home. You know, I wasn’t able to renew it since I don’t have a car anymore.

To my surprise, he told me about their policy of requiring 3 valid ID’s for guests availing the dorm type room. Oh my, they’re even worse than banks for requiring identification. Aside from my company ID, I only had another one which is invalid because it’s an ID for a membership. 

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Thailand, Travel Stories

The Scorpion Lady of Bangkok

It’s true, you’ll meet a lot of people and new friends when you travel.

But there are times that you’ll just encounter a person whom you didn’t become a friend, but will leave an indelible mark in your memory.

Just like this woman in Khao San Road in Bangkok. We just finished having a foot massage that night when we decided to stay for a while and drink some beer.

Chang, a Thai beer, was surprisingly good.

It’s not so strong like beers here in the Philippines. It has a mix taste of fruity apple in it. We chatted for a while. We were thankful for our new Pinoy friends in Bangkok for showing us around the city. We were having a great time until a strange woman approached us. She has this weird hair and all. But hey we were in Bangkok, our minds were open for anything new, so it was okay and fun that she talked to us.

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Travel Stories

Hostel Stories: Please don’t turn off the aircon

To some European or Western backpackers staying in hostels in Southeast Asia, we know you are all used to the cold weather in your countries with snow and all. So when you arrive here, you really enjoy the tropical climate.

The warm weather is something new to you, so you enjoy it, you savor it to the point that you’re beginning to love those sweat on your forehead.

You don’t usually use aircon right? the cold weather in your country is just enough or maybe too much.

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Travel Stories, Visayas

‘Bigyan ng Jacket Moment’ in a Hostel in Cebu

I woke up to the sound of two dudes who were in a hurry packing their backpacks.

It was my first day in Cebu. I checked-in in my hostel at about 11PM so when I entered my room, it was pitch-dark and I had no idea who were my roommates. They were all asleep.

I sat down on my bed, and they greeted me good morning. By the sound of their voices, I had an idea that they were Europeans, but of course I couldn’t distinguish which part in Europe. Hahaha! Until one dude introduced himself as Gustav. That’s what I heard and understood about his name. He apologized if they woke me up. I told them, it’s already 8AM so it’s okay. Read More

Inspiration, Luzon, Travel Stories

Paoay Sand Dunes – Falling Face First While Sandboarding!

The problem is, we give so much f**k about what others think about us.

This way of thinking is so deep…so severe, we’ve become trapped, a victim of an unknown nemesis.

“Am I gonna say this? Do I have to do this? They might laugh at me.”

“Am I sure about this? They might think I’m crazy.”

Those are just some of the things that run through our minds whenever we want to do something. We always think and worse, seek of others approval.

I remember when I travelled to the captivating sand dunes of Paoay, Ilocos Norte. I’ve found myself asking the inner me, “Am I gonna do this? What If I fall? They might laugh at me.”

*Read the rest of the story…

Inspiration, Travel Stories

The Woman I Met at a Manila Park

The Manila City Hall is one of the most iconic structures in Manila. Built in 1939, this building has not just withstood the test of time but has also become witness of the city’s vibrant history.

Today, there are a lot of people in the area. No wonder, because a huge mall is just located at the back of the building. Beside it is a university, and between the school and this building is a park where students group together to relax and chit-chat. This is also a place for others to grab a bite as food stalls and kiosks are lined up.

After so many years, I’ve found myself sitting at the park again. I’ve never expected that I would enjoy being in a place like this. It was nostalgic. I remember when I was a kid, my parents used to bring me and my brother to Luneta Park, the most popular spot in Manila which is also situated near the City Hall.

I just finished a meeting with a client near the place when I decided to take my lunch at the park’s food stalls. I work as an Account Manager for an international shipping company, visiting customers is a big part of my job.

At that time my car was busted so I took a cab going to my client’s office. I admit, the inconvenience aggravated my mood.

I felt lost.I was experiencing a deep sense of unhappiness. I was looking for meaning.

*Read the rest of the story…