felix felicis

felix felicis: November 2012

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Book Hoards

My friends and I were able to visit National Bookstore QAve for their warehouse sale. There are just so maaaaaaany people inside the bookstore but we managed to get several good titles. I was able to buy seven books most of which are marked down to around half the price. I only got them for PhP792 but they are originally priced at around 2000 plus. Great deal, no? Hahaha!

Like a skyscrapeeeer. On our way to QAve.

Box full of books. No, we did not buy them all. Hehe

Titles. Titles. Titles overfloweth.

The liiiiiiiiiiiiine!

Draw the line. Char.
If you’re looking for an inexpensive but nice gift ideas, NBS is having another Christmas Sale this week at their Market- Market Branch. You may want to check it out. J

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Burloloy Milestones

Wow. It’s been almost six months since my friends and I started Burloloy. Looking back, I never really thought it would be this big and nice and colorful. Char. Anyway, after a month-long hiatus in October, we launched a new collection for November—fashion accessories from Cebu! We thought that featuring local products would be good since we’re not only promoting fashion the Filipino way, we’re also helping local economies. There. Aside from this new collection, we also decided to join a weekend bazaar at Mercato Centrale in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. We thought that expanding our online business to something more tangible like bazaars would be a good networking and marketing strategy. We’ll get to meet new people and possible customers. It would definitely expand our market. Well, that is if we’re successful in pitching in our products. Yabang aside, I think I’m confident we’ll be able to wing this one. Hahaha! We’ll be there on the 7th and 8th. Seeyall! JJJJJ


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The Listener's Malady

Ang problema, masyadong maraming matalino.
Kaya ang siste, di patatalo sa diskurso.
Aba’y Koya, kung nakinig ka nalang muna,
Baka sakaling nalaman mong parehas lang ang inyong nasa.
Mas madalas kasing nais nating magpasikat
Kesa manahimik sandali at saka sumipat.
Pagkatapos, pag-isipang muli kung mahalaga ang sasabihin,
Saka lamang bigkasin ang nasa isipin
Hindi yung salita ka ng salita,
Nang-aaway pa ng kapwa.
Maninisi’t papansinin ang lahat ng makitang mali ng iba,
Kapag binalikan naman lahat ng sinabi niya,
Wala palang kwenta.
Kamot ulo ka nalang at kung minsan may mura pang kasama.
Hindi naman sa bawal ka ng magsalita,
Lalo na't kung liko at di naayon sa tama ang sinambitla.
Ang sa akin lamang pag-isipan at pag-isipan mo pa ng ikalawa
Nang di mapahiya.
Upang kapag sinuring maigi ang sasabihing dalita,
Siguradong makukuha ang kanilang paggalang at simpatiya
Bukod dito, pahahalagahan pa ang iyong mga naibahaging ideya.

This was written in the middle of a discussion over several policy issues. Ever since I began sitting in meetings, public hearings and seminars or whatever gathering, I’ve always thought that the best contribution I could make is to listen to the speaker share his/her thoughts over a certain issue or topic. From there, I could mull over the thoughts and arguments he made. If I find several of his/her points illogical or factually incorrect, I do mental debates. What if this happens or another situation takes place? If I change a variable, would the same outcome be revealed or would there be a significant change? To begin with, are my points even plausible or are they plain irrelevant? Most of the time, I find it a bit rude when people butt in their comments over a program or policy issue. But what annoys me most is when these BIRs (best in recitation, that is) start to over-argue (if there’s such a word) their cases. I mean, I already get your point, so get it over with. Don’t bore me with your litanies and endless gibbers that this should have been done, that should not have been the main point or we could have at least used this or that method. The thing is it was already done—whatever that may be. So, because you can’t change it for now, what can you do to improve the situation or what is your proposed solution that is will best benefit your target audience/beneficiaries? The same goes when you are writing a commentary or whatever paper that requires your stand or opinion on things. When tweeting or posting your statuses or comments on popular social networking sites, such a reminder should also be followed religiously. Think before you click. Or else, you may end up hurting or offending other people, which totally sucks big time. You don’t want to be cyberbullied or anything, in the end.

In sum, this Chinese proverb says it best, to talk much and arrive nowhere is the same as climbing a tree to catch a fish.” So there—these are just my two cents worth on speaking your hearts and minds out. It matters that you make yourself heard. But what matters most is that you are speaking out the right words at the right time with the right voice. J

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Friday, November 23, 2012

Feel Good Friday Playlist

People would often be plagued by a lot of problems of varying sizes and degrees. Haters are gonna hate. Everyone would experience sh*t in their lives but all of these should not bring us down or suck the happiness out of us like the Dementors did to Harry and Dudley or become forever bitter over everything like Tom Riddle was. Don’t worry, it’s okay to wallow in sadness for a while and shield ourselves from the outside world for some time. Maybe that’s how we’ll be able to heal the wounds that scarred us and recover from all the pain we've had. But to continue to be on that state for the rest of your lives would make you a coward. So go out and make the best out of the fragmented pieces of your life. After all, they always said that the happiest people don’t have the best of everything; they just make the best of everything. So, to hell with all asdfghjkl*236$6# whatever! Imma live my life and be happy with all those things God has put my way. Hahaha!

Anyways, enough of all these. I’ve made a playlist to make things brighter. Hahaha! I consider them my perk- up/ feel good songs whenever I feel bad or I just need a slight nudge to be inspired. So here’s the songlist:

1              Shake It Out – Florence + the Machine
2              One Life – James Morrison
3              Put Your Records On – Corrine Bailey Rae
4              Keep Your Head Up – Andy Grammer
5              Perfect Day – Lady Antebellum
6              22 – Taylor Swift
7              Every Tear Drop is a Waterfall – Coldplay
8              Good Life – One Republic
9              Houdini – Foster the People
10            We Are Young – Fun
11            One Love – U2, Mary J. Blige

The lyrics of these songs are just downright happy and positive plus the beats and thumps that accompany it would definitely make your hearts jump for joy again. Hehehe. I do hope that such would really happen. If you're interested, you can download the playlist here.

Happy happy joy joy! :D

Enjooooooooooooy! Happy Weekend everyone! J

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Thursday, November 22, 2012

A Blast from the Past at Ayutthaya

Team Bangkok’s second day was spent at Ayutthaya—Thailand’s ancient capital. The city is now the capital of Ayutthaya Province in Thailand and is located in the valley of the Chao Phraya River.  

Getting there
Backpackers who would want to visit the old capital have three options to get there. The easiest but the most expensive would be to rent a cab from Bangkok. Plug down rates are 40B but since it will be rented, starting prices may range from 250 to 300B. The cheaper route would be either to ride the bus (I don’t know how) or the train. My friends and I took the train route. So from our dorm in Pradiphat, we rode a bus that would take us to Bang Sue Junction Station—that’s way past Siam. At Bang Sue Junction, there’s a train that would take you to Ayutthaya Station. Train fare is 14B and travel time is around an hour and fifteen minutes. We rode the third class train— no aircon and is quite like our PNR though much cleaner. Plus this one’s the cheapest so there. Hahaha.

Buy your tickets here! Actually si Ate talaga ang subject jan. Chos. Hahaha

Inside the Hogwarts Express. Hahaha. Si Harry at si Ron. Loljk.

Di pa kame nakakaalis ng Bangkok, may borlogs na. Tsss.

By The River Chao Phraya We Sat Down and Ate*
I was especially excited for our Ayutthaya trip. It was supposed to be scrapped from our itinerary because they thought getting there would be too pricey—our alternative was a theme park in Bangkok. Good thing I was able to haggle that it’s a better choice over the theme park—first because there are a lot of attractions to visit and see, second, we get to ride the train and go to the countryside, and third, I just don’t like the theme park. Hahaha!

From the station, we walked towards the small restaurants located by the riverside to ask how much would be the ferry ride. There are also bike rental stores along our way—tourists can opt to tour the old capital by biking. The nice restaurant owner told us that ferry rides would just take us to the other side of the river and the tour’s pretty much on our own. She suggested that we rent a tuktuk, instead. Tuktuk drivers in Ayutthaya are excellent tourist guides so that should be better. We paid 150B each (a total of 900B) for a guided tour.

We arrived at Ayutthaya a little around 11am and we’re already starving. After sealing the deal for the tuktuk rental with the nice lady, we asked her if her resto’s serving lunch. She said yes and offered us immediately the menu. We went inside her bahay-kubo resto and chose a table overlooking the river. I totally loved the feel. Hahahaha. Each one of us ordered a plate of fried rice and Jhessa added a serving of spring rolls for everyone. RJ, Jhessa and I asked for a tall glass of their milk iced tea while Ate Chael, Xave and Kat requested for a mug of mocha frappe. As soon as lunch was served, everyone ate in silence. HAHAHA! Gutom na gutom lang talaga! Xave and I took Kat’s veggies because she doesn’t eat one. Thirty minutes later, the plates were already clean and the glasses half- empty. Hahaha. That was one fulfilling lunch! I especially loved their milk tea. It’s sweet and refreshing and just right. J

A Whole New World
By 1PM, the tuktuk driver’s already outside the resto waiting for us. We paid the owner and happily rode our ride for the day. We sped through the dusty streets of Ayutthaya and a few more minutes we’re spellbound. The ruins are just beautiful and picturesque.

Platform Ayutthaya. :)

Largest Golden Buddha. Everrrr.
Buddha and His Wat.

Smaller Buddha Statues serve as sentinels around the wat.

Floating Market.

While on the ride.

Against the light.

Buddha statue ruins.
Temple Ruins pa rin.

Because Jollijeeps and McDollibee have kin in other countries too. Hahaha


Techy monk.

Enter the dragon.
We weren't able to ride the elephant because it's too expensive so we settled for a photo. Hahaha

By the river.
We would have gone to two more temples that afternoon but by the time we finished taking our picture with Buddha by the tree, big droplets of rain are already spattering from the clouds so we halted the tour short. When we got inside our small tuktuk, the rain began pouring hard. Manong Driver brought us to the train station, just in time for the train’s last trip (4PM) to Bangkok. We looked like “basang sisiw” when we got there but so were the other tourists along us. The rains were still heavy and we have to cross the tracks to the other side because that’s where the train will stop. A few more minutes and we’re able to get inside the train--- AIRCOOOON! Lamig lang. Hahaha. As it sped its way back to the bustling urban center, everyone dozed off.

Rainy mood on.
By 6PM, we’re back at Bang Sue Junction. The daytrip gave us a new set of photos with everyone doing the jumpshot and the awesome ~Buddha pose. But more than the Facebook-worthy pictures, we’re glad we reached Thailand’s ancient capital—it’s history, religion, architecture, politics lessons all in one. To be honest, our second day tour to Ayutthaya was my favorite from all the places we visited in Thailand. I just loved the exotic and rustic feel of this locale. Hahaha.

Oh and did I tell you we met Lonely Planet in person? Yep! She’s the nice lady by the river who helped us snag an awesome Ayutthaya tour. Her name in Thai is… I forgot. I’ll ask my friends for that. All I remember was when the tuktuk’s gearing for our ride, she told us her Thai name if translated in English means Lonely Planet. Then she’s gone. Char. Di naman siya fairy! Hahaha.

For more photos of our Bangkok trip, you may visit my photoblog at www.kyemeruth.jux.com. J

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Monday, November 19, 2012

First day high. Or low. Or whatever.

This sem, I decided to enroll on a Masters Degree in Asian Studies at the UP-Asian Center. I felt like I needed a worthy distraction from the thoughts that jade me recently. I was feeling kinda insecure about a lot of things lately so a hefty amount of history readings and class presentations are a welcome respite to my semi-boring life. Lol. Emo. Hahaha. Ok, so it’s not really boring. It’s just all angst and a late spurt of teenage rebellion thing. Hahaha. Feeling teen pa kase ako kahit 21 na. There.

The ~cute notebook. Hahaha. May sungay talaga. Tss.
Anyway, so there, I went to school on Tuesday armed with a pencil case filled with colored pens, a violet sign pen and a cute notebook courtesy of Ate Fina. Hahaha! Good luck gift daw. I intend to draw on the first page. Pero next time nalang. 

Our first class was Modern Asia and it was like college all over. There’s a sea of new faces—this time, they’re mature- looking and exuding with confidence. I thought of trying to strike a conversation with anyone but immediately decided against it because my ~extrovert self failed me. So I sat across my classmates and opened my phone to read Ken Liu’s Hugo Award-winning short story while waiting for our professor to arrive. The small room slowly filled with more people. There’s this Chinese girl who sat on the chair on my right and another girl wearing a sweatshirt and knee-high socks on my left. I smiled and went back to my reading. The professor came inside after thirty minutes only to tell us he’ll meet the other class on the next room. By 6PM, the screen was flashing “Introduction to Modern Asia” and a quote from Charles Taylor:

“The project of development imposed upon traditional societies by the so-called modernization banishes what is important to them such as sacred horizon, a fixed community and an unchallengeable custom and tradition.” (1999)

Hmmm. So it’s like this in a nutshell: In order to attain development, a certain community must embrace modernization and transform its traditional psyche/ setup into something more adaptable and relative to the status quo. Or not really. For me, modernization and a well-meaning tradition must complement each other to attain a better form of development. But then again such a thought would be validated as soon as the class plunges into further discussions throughout the coursework. I look forward to such.

After the presentation, the class (I only have 12 classmates, just so you know haha) was asked to comment on the syllabus and add or remove subtopics depending on the class’ desire. I actually like the original syllabus, with topics ranging from the concepts of civilization and nationalism, colonial legacies from the Europeans (i.e. East India, British Indies, Spain, Portugal and the French colonies in Southeast Asia), fall of known empires, independence and the beginning and end of the Cold War. There are also topics that intend to discuss the rise of Northeast Asian countries (i.e. China, Japan and South Korea), as well as the social and nationalist movements in many Asian rogue states. Finally, discussions on special topics related to modernization like regional economic integration, regional blocs, transnational crimes and security, culture and mass media/technology and climate change are also part of the syllabus. During the group discussion, I suggested that the class might be interested to include labor and migration in the special topics part. I said that it might be a good prelude to better understand why Asian economies are thriving or are choosing to do cooperation and bilateral agreements. People in search for jobs contribute much to international human traffic and may as well help in better understanding the sudden increase in transnational crimes committed (i.e. drug mules, prostitution, slavery). I kinda felt they understood my point because they included it in the revised syllabus. Hahaha. So much for participation.

The class ended with everyone asking for a digital copy of Prof’s digital books. 110 all in all. We’re wondering how he got such a huge collection of books about Asia and he said they were either given, copied or digitally ~stolen downloaded. Hahaha. I copied all in my thumb drive. Wahaha! They’re now in my Dropbox account! J

My next class was held last Saturday, still at the GT Building. This time, prof’s an old but charming lady. I was late. Bad start. Anyways, the class was equally interesting as the other. There are still BIRs (best in recitation for non-readers of the ~Urban Dictionary hehe), but nonetheless, the class was ok. We had a round of intros and I learned a lot from my classmates. There are full time students who are interested in studying Japan because they practically grew up with J-Rock, anime and manga. And then there a Lit professor from the Ateneo who’s interested in learning more about Vietnam and Burma; another HS teacher from a public high school in Quezon City is interested to learn more about Korea—this time because of K-dramas and Hallyu. I also have a classmate who already had a chance to be an intern at the National Library of Korea and is currently working at the Korean Cultural Center—he wants to pursue Korean studies. So much love for Dara’s breed. Hehehe. A classmate who had an undergrad degree in Industrial Engineering went to AC to study Northeast Asia because she was particularly interested in the Toyota Way and the Han Miracle. There’s also an Econ undergrad and two PolSci studes who’re both into Japanese studies. During the intro round, I told them my name and that I intend to major in Southeast Asia. I’m ready to tell them a few more things about myself but I was cut short so I just listened to what others would share. I think that’s still ok—it makes me a bit mysterious to them and all. Also, I did not give them a bad impression or a pabibo attitude so walang inis factor na magaganap. I’m the silent dork at the corner of the room. Wallflower status achieved! Hahaha.

I thought the class would end after the lengthy intros but wait there’s more. We’re asked to write an essay about three things: first, what comes to our mind when the word Asia is mentioned; second, what am I interested in; and lastly, what do I expect from the class and from my professor. Bonus question was on how we gauge a good teacher from an average and a bad one. So what did I write about?

On the first question, I wrote that I had a biased concept of Asia before. For me, Asia was like the Philippines expanded—old, dirty, excessively populated and third world. The interest to studying the region poured when I was in second year high school and our Araling Panlipunan class was focused on Asian history. It grew even more when we started comparing Asia with its Western counterparts—how the traditions practiced in the region developed its nuanced culture and its differentiation from the West. The nationalist movements in Asia also fueled my desire to understand the subject further. That’s how it all started.

Because I poured a lot of thoughts on the first question, I found a bit of difficulty answering the next question. The fact that it asks me about my interest baffled me. Haha. I’m still confused as to my choices—I guess because I want to learn a lot on many fields and that I want to maximize my stay at the University. I wanna make sure that I learn everything I can from the best. In short, I wrote that I’m interested in Southeast Asia and possible models of development that could be replicated in the Philippines, most especially on local governments. Gusto ko lang talaga siya irelate sa trabaho ko. Hahaha. No really, that’s what interests me. Now. Hahaha!

The last question was all about expectations, so I just wrote something more honest. Hahaha. I wrote that I expect the class to be rigorous and demanding when it comes to readings and essay writing since that’s where we learn most of the graduate school stuff. And then again, I wrote that I would want a class that highly encourages class discussion on issues that are to be discussed since this would validate the thoughts we formed while reading our materials and notes. For the professor, I wrote that I expect someone who’s both interesting and inspiring. That’s when I wrote that a good teacher is someone who shares a part of themselves to their students—someone who inspires their students to be a better version of themselves. Pwede naaaa.

In conclusion, I felt I had a fairly good experience for my first week inside the classroom. I thought the lessons were interesting and would really challenge me to exert every effort to excel. Naks. Seriously, I felt good after my classes even if I did not succeed in making friends right away. My Saturday prof told it better—in graduate school, intelligence takes you to places and then again, your focus and discipline would take you higher and better than what you’ve expected. So, I’ll read and read and read until my eyeballs gouge out its sockets. Joke. Morbid. I’ll really strive hard first because I’m spending money for it but secondly because it would make me a better person in the end. J

I’m hoping I won’t be late for this week’s classes. Especially on Saturday. Hahaha.

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Friday, November 16, 2012

Chatuchak During Weekdays

Team Bangkok decided to take a break after a grueling tour inside the Grand Palace Complex. Don’t get me wrong. We enjoyed the whole thing—the lotuses, Buddha statues, majestic temples and all those bustling foreign tourists happily clicking their cameras. It’s just that we haven’t had a bath and the sun’s just shining oh-so-brightly upon us—we felt icky and tired and all. But happiness was all over so keber. Hahaha. Anyways, in front of the Complex, there are public buses going to and from Pradiphat. We rode one and after 30 minutes we’re Udee-bound. Showeeeeeeeeeeeeerrr! Hahaha.

Hunger Pangs
See! It's a nice restaurant. :D
After we took our turns taking a refreshing bath, we looked for something to eat. We thought of trying Shimi Shabu-Shabu located a few blocks from our dorm but decided against it because we felt it might be a bit pricey. We searched far and wide but lo and behold, the food we’re looking for is right in front of us. Well, in front of Soi 19, technically. Hahaha. I forgot the name of the fancy resto because it’s in Thai. But, I’m telling you, the food’s great, unforgettable. :D Hahaha! 

They’ve got all sorts of fried rice—chicken, beef, seafood which my friends tried. They’ve also got stir-fried veggies and all which we totally loved. Plus they also have awesome Pad Thai! I ordered that one because I felt we’re in Thailand so why not eat something Thai, hence, the Pad Thai. Hahahaha. The whole eating experience was cool—it’s salty and lemon-y with a hint of something spicy in it. My taste buds and my whole digestive system were so happy from this gastronomic delight. They also have a wide array of choices for drinks—hot or cold coffee, milkshake, fruit shake, iced tea whatever. Fruit shakes are freshly made. Nice. For dessert, Ate Chael bought a box of bread. I dunno what that one’s called so lemme just describe. It’s soft and has a sweet filling inside which is either buko pandan or custard. Both are heavenly. J

Wolfed down a plateful of Pad Thai. Gutom lang.
Hahahaha! They found love in a ~food place. How nice! Hahaha :P

This is the happy bread I told you! :D

Aside from their food choices, what I really liked about this resto is its homey concept. There’s a splash of pastel colors everywhere. There are even small portraits of women that are really nicely painted. I wonder if there are concept restos like that here ‘cos I haven’t seen one yet. Or maybe there are. I’m not just going out a lot. Hahaha!

Walkathon Galore
Street Food sa Bangkok. Oha oha!
We really enjoyed our late lunch that day because our bellies are heavy and full. Haha. Para maiwasan ang asal-baboy mode (i.e. kain-tulog-kain-tulog-ng-walang-humpay), we thought of walking. Anyways, according to our trusty map, Chatuchak Market is just a few walks away from our place, so why not. It turned out our assumption was bit skewed. The Pradiphat-to-Chatuchak walk (ride the BTS from Saphan Kwai Station then go down to Mo-Chit Station, if you don’t want to torture your legs) is way beyond our leg and feet powers--- napakalayoooo! Hahaha. It’s like PUP Main Campus to Nagtahan on foot. Ganon.

So when we saw the Chatuchak Market Sign, the Hallelujah Chorus was ringing inside my ears. Hahaha. Charot. Seriously, when we got inside, it was a whole new thing for me. There are flowers everywhere! Dangwa na mas mapayapa, ganon. Hahaha. I almost got lost because I was so engrossed with taking pictures through my newly charged phone and adding vintage filters to make the photos look more legit. I thought I was following them until I realized I’m going after the wrong people. Oh no. But I thought of just keeping my cool and good enough RJ was able to find me. Hahaha! They went the other way and I wandered on the dark other side. Wow. I never left the group again to wander alone. Haha!

Hundred flowers bloom :)
Flower baskets everywhere.

Belltower in the middle of the market.

Feeling photojer. Hahaha!
A few more walks inside the flower garden after we decided to take a rest. We learned that Chatuchak Market is a florist’s haven by weekdays and a bargain shopping center during weekends. It’s nice seeing the place filled with nature’s treats before it’s packed with a lot of people hunting for marked down items. There’s just so much beauty around that place that one can’t help but smile. We might have had a tiresome experience going there but the sight’s definitely a treat. J

For more photos, you may visit my photoblog: www.kyemeruth.jux.com J

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

on Ralph, the wrecks he made and the good he did in the end

Wreck-It Ralph features the voices of John Reilly,
Sarah Silverman and Jane Lynch.
Ok. So I have a secret. I watched Wreck-It Ralph without my siblings knowing. Hahaha! They know I went out last Friday night to unwind and relax but I did not tell them I was going to watch THAT movie. Hahaha! Oh but then again, they did not tell me that they would really want to catch it on the big screen. They like Ralph, but they like the Rise ofthe Guardians more, so there, I have an excuse. HAHAHA!

Anyways, enough of the excuses, let’s see how the movie fared. Hmmm. I already gave it a good rating at Rotten Tomatoes, but lemme expound. J

In the movie, Ralph had always been the bad guy because he destroys buildings in his game. Fix-It Felix, with his gold mallet, would always come to the rescue and rebuild the structures destroyed by Ralph. In one event, our big guy got tired and decides to go “turbo”. His adventure begins from one video game to another, wrecking things here and there until on a chance encounter, he meets Vanellope—a glitch—and eventually finds out he could still build and create beautiful things despite his “freakishly big hands.”

Bad Guys Anonymous: One Game At A Time
I thought the movie was quite good. Disney was able to craft a sensible story out of video game characters. And it’s not only a story—there’s heart in it. Ralph was a relatable character, especially for ~perceived bullies like me. Hahaha. But seriously, I felt that the movie teaches us to see other people on a different light. Not all of them are bad and not all of them are good too, like King Candy. Most of the time, we just need a few good conversations or an unlikely situation to see what stuff these people are made of. That’s when we get to know that they really have a heart or they don’t actually have one. And then, the movie Green Mile comes into mind. I’m recommending this one. It’s a story about a big black guy (played by Michael Clarke Duncan) who was accused of raping young girls in their community and how he struggled proving himself innocent. He has a mental problem, by the way, so that compounds the problem. Anyway, just watch it.

Vanellope Von Schweetz the Glitch and Wreck-It Ralph
Yeah, so where/what am I getting at? I dunno. Char. Hahaha. No really, I believe in the inherent goodness of earthlings. The bad things we see are just brought about by the faulted environments these people are in or from unwanted circumstances that shaped them. Ralph lived all his life treated coldly by the small guys partying in the penthouse. He saw how differently he and Felix were treated and he longed for a dose of approval or some sort of love from his neighbors. He realized that when he started helping Vanellope get onto the candy race and pushed her to wing it. I guess if we just show a bit more love and care for the unwanted or carefully choose the words we use when talking to other people or settle to listening first instead of arguing immediately, I’m thinking and feeling it would make a whole lot of difference.

“Turns out I don't need a medal to tell me I'm a good guy. Because if that little kid likes me... 
How bad can I be...?” (Ralph on Vanellope)

Hahaha, so yun lang naman ang reflection ko. Hahaha. Tas chaka ulet yung blog post title, wag nyo nalang pansinin. Maganda ding gawing game ang pag-identify sa titles ng video games na fineature sa movie. Hahaha, pang-quiz night kunware ang peg o kaya vid game whiz ka kunware. Hahaha! Watch Ralph! The plot may be a bit cliché but it never failed to tug thy heartstrings and tear glands, so go catch it before the vampires invade our theaters. Hahaha. J

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Friday, November 9, 2012


Done! :DDD I hope JGL sees this. *Wishful thinking lang naman* Hahaha! :D

So here’s my newest work. Char. I’m a bit of a late bloomer so it would a bit complicated adjusting to Illustrator while doing my next “~project”. I’m currently experimenting on doing a comic-style vector art. Ala- A Scanner Darkly ni Richard Linklater. Hahaha. But I’m excited so… hands on na! J

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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Looking for a place to stay in Bangkok? Go to Udee!

Welcome to Udee!
When my friends and I started planning for our Bangkok trip, we initially searched for a place to stay. We began by reading write-ups from travel bloggers. We also asked friends and friends of friends who’ve been to Bangkok where we could stay. The cheapest so far was First House Hotel in Pratunam. It’s an ideal place for backpackers because the room rates are relatively cheap plus it is accessible and is within the city’s business district. I think the place also lures tourists who visit Bangkok just to shop as the hotel is at the heart of the Pratunam shopping district. Anyway, we could have stayed there but the hotel was already fully-booked for the month of September so no way. Kuya Alvin, Dora’s male counterpart in our office, suggested cheap pension houses along Khao San Road—he said that’s the backpackers’ area. We searched for them in the web but we can’t find any that would fit six people. Untiiiiiil… RJ found Udee! From where? We don’t really know. Hahaha.

How to get there
Victory Monument. View from the BTS.
Udee Bangkok is located at 49 Pradiphat Soi 19, Pradiphat Road, Phayathai, Bangkok. It’s near the Chatuchak Market and is several blocks away from the Victory Monument.

From the Suvarnabhumi Airport, you can either take the taxi or the connecting train systems. The taxi if you’re too tired and you brought a lot of luggage or if you have Baht to spare. The BTS (i.e. connecting train system), if you’re in for some adventure and you’d want to get a feel of the Bangkok traffic.

If you’re taking the taxi, just show the driver the complete address of Udee Bangkok and you’re good to go. Taxis are located at the exit area of the Suvarnabhumi Airport. It would take you around 40-45 minutes—that’s according to Udee’s website.

Platform 9 and 3/4. Chos.
Now, the train. Since we arrived at Bangkok on an ungodly hour, we’ll have to wait until 6AM for the trains to reopen. Fast forward. From the arrival areas, go two floors down until you reach the train platform. Just like our MRTs and LRTs here, you purchase the train token/ticket by inserting coins on the ticket machine. Get off at Phayathai Station then transfer to the BTS line until your train reaches Saphan Kwai Station. Walk to Saphan Kwai Intersection (15 minutes) and then turn right to Pradiphat Road. Walk for another 10-12 minutes until you see Soi 19. Udee Bangkok is at the far end of Soi 19, a few blocks from the shabu-shabu house. It’s a white building with a red gate.

Room Rates, Facilities and Other Perks at Udee
Walking on sunshine. Literal. Hahaha.
We arrived there at around 8AM so we’re not yet allowed to stay inside our rooms. Check-in time is 2PM. But backpackers are allowed to leave their luggage at the dorm’s storage area. Don’t worry, it’s safe. J

Udee has rooms for two until eight people. Standard rooms can fit two- three people. They also have rooms for four. Then, they have dorm-type rooms for six to eight people. Dorms use communal shower and toilet areas. During our stay, we paid THB995 each (that’s for our four-day-three-night stay). That would be around PhP1,800 for each of us—relatively cheap compared to other dorms or hotels within the area. The payment includes free breakfast (there’s cereals, ham and cheese sandwiches and salad greens plus tea or coffee; bottled water cost THB10; also you have to wash the dishes and utensils you used) until 10AM, towels and toiletries. That’s already a good deal for travelers looking for a nice and inexpensive place to retire for the night.

(1) View from top; (2) Second floor rooms;
(3) Reception area; and (4) Kitchen
Udee has five floors. The ground is the hostel’s receiving area, kitchen and hang-out place. There’s also a mini-garden by the porch. The second floor has two rooms (probably the standard/ twin rooms). It’s also the hostel’s mini- internet café. There are two units of desktop computers with CPUs that have slots for coins (you pay for the use of the internet). The third and fourth floors are the dorm areas. And then they have a rooftop with a nice view of the Pradiphat District and bit of Bangkok’s skyline. We did our charot music video there! Hahahaha. Also, there’s free wifi on each floor so don’t bother using the LAN internet at the second floor. Hehehehe.

Udee is the place to be!
Our guide! 
For budget travelers like us, Udee is an ideal place to stay. It’s right within your budget plus the amenities are just nice. Also, the owners are very hospitable and helpful especially if you don’t know which bus to ride or which direction to go to. What I like best at Udee is their reception area—there’s this huge corkboard which contains a blown-up map of Bangkok, train schedules and buses to take. It was our go-to area when we can’t understand the directions given by Google. Hahaha. Their mini-library also contains a lot of good titles. Readers could either borrow or swap their books there. Cool!

The rooms are also clean and nice. Dorms use bunk beds. Aircons can only be used from 6PM to 11AM. The rest of day—industrial electric fans. Hahaha. One would also admire the cleanliness of their communal bathrooms. It’s just something you wouldn’t expect from THB315-rooms-per-night. The only downside—WALANG TABO or bidet. Hahahaha! You have to get this—Filipinos are not used to just using tissue to clean themselves up after a toilet session—there has to be a pail of water and soap; so a place without a bidet or a dipper is quite a torture for us. Hahaha. Good thing the owner has this small pail used to water their plants. We borrowed it for some time just so we can effectively manage nature’s calls. Hahahaha.

From MNL with <3
Don’t forget to leave a message of thanks to the owners before you leave Udee! They have this slumbook/dedication notebook by the reading room. And if you happen to browse its pages, you’ll get to see the doodle we did for them. Hahahaha!

For reservations or for more information about Udee, you can visit their cute website: www.udeebangkok.com or like their Facebook account: www.facebook.com/Udee-Bangkok/.

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