Thursday, December 29, 2005

Day X of Block Leave (Old friends and SM Pilgrimage)

Ok so my day counts for my block leave are not accurate. This is supposedly my 10th and last day of my filed block leave. Although I technically still have three days to go of my vacation until I return to work on January 2nd. So let me savour it while it lasts.

Today was my scheduled orientation for my driving school. Apparently, A-1 has classrooms in certain SM malls to hold these lectures. Since I missed the lecture last Tuesday at SM Southmall, they scheduled me to attend the one at SM Bicutan. During my block leave, I managed to visit 3 SM Malls (Bicutan, South Mall Las Pinas and Sucat). My friends joked that they're going to hold an SM Pilgrimage wherein they will visit all the SM Malls in the Philippines and I think they've gone through them half-way.

I also met up with my high school friend, Pam, who's house is located just behind the mall. It's amazing how long we haven't seen each other. Pam was my classmate since first year high school. We were in the same sections until fourth year high school. We also went to the same university. We reminisced and laughed over old fads and crushes (she used to be crazy over Christian Slater and I over George Michael--during his "Faith" album). She finished her Biology degree and went on to become a doctor. She's now finishing her training to specialize as a pediatrician. We were joking that she should've been a vet due to the number of dogs and cats that she has. I told her that I'd prefer fishes over mammals since fishes are low maintenance. Moreover, they stay put where you put them and they're very relaxing. She then said, what will my fishes do if a burglar gets in the house? At least her dogs (including a rottweiller named 8-Ball who belongs to her ex-boyfriend) can bark. Ok, so I conceded that point.

Pam and I shared half a bottle of red wine until Leo picked me up around 9 pm. It was nice seeing her again. I do wish I could see her more but she's very busy with her hospital duty. She's usually in the hospital 24 hours and she only goes home to sleep. When she does get her diplomate status, am going to make her the pediatrician of my future children. Heh.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Day 8 of of Block Leave (Sunshine's Misadventures at the Las Pinas LTO)

As previously mentioned, I seeked assistance from my driving school to get my student's permit. A decade ago, I think, you don't need to have a personal appearance to get a student permit, this time around, you need to have your picture taken in order to just get the permit.

As instructed by my school, I was at the meeting place (SM Southmall) at 1130 am. They made me fill up the LTO application form and submitted my requirements. We left for the Land Transportation Office at around 12 pm.

Upon getting there, there were lots of people milling around the windows. Apparently, it was lunch break. We were given instructions to wait for our names to be called at Window 9 to have our picture taken and our signatures captured. Afterwhich, we just need to wait for our permits. He did not give a specific turn around time but I figured, since we already asked for "assistance", it won't be too long.

Of all the days, I don't know why the sun chose this specific day to shine so bright and so hot. It was so overcast the previous days that I thought today would be a repeat of the other days. Since it was after lunch, the sun was at its zenith and we were sweltering outside at the waiting area. Moreover, you could smell the sweat of other people mixed with the dust. Definitely not a pleasant experience. To while away the time, I chatted with my "classmates". One of them, a new graduate from UP Manila was a bit chatty and we exchanged basic information. She was surprised when she learned I'm already 30. She thought I was still a student. Hah! Hah! And Triple Hah! The look of surprise on her face really helped my ego. Hehehe. She started calling me Ate Sunshine. I wanted to tell her to drop the ate and just call me Shine like what she was doing before she learned of my real age. Heh.

We were called around 2:00 pm to have our picture taken. No wonder people look the way they do on their driver's licenses. Just waiting for your name to be called will leave you very harassed and wilted indeed. After that, there was another 1 hour and a half wait for the Official Receipt stamped as a temporary driver's license/student permit. My file got separated from my companions because I was called around 4 pm--another half hour of waiting. It did not help that my shoes decided to choose this day to break apart. See, I was given instructions to wear closed shoes and collared blouse. Since I'm a stickler to the rules, I followed it to the letter. I did wear jeans and flat mules (?) and a collared blouse. I did not notice that the mules were kinda old and the soles were cracked already. So while I was standing outside Window 9 of the LTO, my soles broke apart.

After getting my official receipt (with the Temporary Student Permit stamp), I unsteadily walked out of the LTO and hailed a jeepney where I was dropped off at BF Southland. Fortunately, I saw a small store selling mojos and I bought a pair, throwing off my old shoes. Since I'll be the only one here at home with Janice (my cousins went to Makati), I decided to do a bit of shopping.

I took a jeepney at Southland and I got down at Watson's Phase I where I went shopping for beauty products. My derma adviced me to change all my sponges and make-up brushes since I just had my warts removed. Moreover, I was also adviced to use white soaps since being asthmatic, my skin has the tendency to become dry so no harsh soaps for me. She also prescribed Cetaphil (as facial wash) and Neutrogena Sun Block with Moisturizer (which I still cannot find) or L'Oreal with Mexoryl (which I also cannot find) since I need tons of moisturizer to keep my face dry-free.

Burdened with my new beauty items, I went to Ruins were I bought a new pair of walking shoes. I need some flat shoes which would also double as my driving shoes. I am so prepared to drive! Although seeing the hassle which I have to go through to get a non-professional license is giving me second thoughts. I hate the feeling of being sweaty and grimy. I just wish that the government will run its offices like a private company with service very much ingrained in their system. They don't care if the lines are long and the people are sweaty and grimy. They don't care if you spend the whole day waiting in line and wasting your time when you could do something more productive. You can't afford to wander too far from the windows because if your name will be called and you're not there (at the photo window), your record will be erased from the computer and you have to reapply. So I spent four hours (half a day) at the LTO and at that rate, I already seeked "assistance". What more for those people who decided to do everything by themselves? It's really a whole day affair.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Day 7 of my Block Leave

For those who just ate, please don't read this first.

Other than last Wednesday, today is also a very productive day for me.

I FINALLY went to a derma and had my warts and skin tags removed. I had some on my neck removed last year at Let's Face It but they grew back. Leo accompanied me yesterday to the Healthway clinic at Alabang Town Center (he's paying for it after all) and made an appointment for today. So I was an my doctor's clinic by 11 am sharp. My doctor, Dr. Patricia Tinio is a very congenial person. She's one of the nicest doctors I've ever met. So if ever you want to consult a derma with your skin problems, she has a clinic at Casa Filipina Bldg and at Healthway Clinic at Alabang Town Center. She's a big improvement from the derma I consulted before at the Medical Clinic at Megamall. Dr. Tinio is 35 yet she looks like she got out of college! Now that's what I call a good derma.

Anyway, she applied numbing cream on the warts and skin tags first and left to settle for 30 minutes. I rested for a bit and when she returned, she started snipping and cauterizing. Even with the numbing cream, I could still feel (and smell) the burning flesh. At least when she snipped the skin tags, they weren't painful, they did bleed though. Ugh ugh ugh. Ewwwwwwwwww. The things we do for beauty. Sigh.

My skin was very pink and swollen after it was done. She removed quite a bit from my face, neck and torso. I'm so glad I already took a bath this morning because she told me to not take a bath for the next 24 hours. She gave me some healing cream to enable the scabs to form faster so I can wash my face and body tomorrow. I am SO glad I did this while am on vacation. I don't think I could go to work the next day without taking a bath. Ewwww!

I had my cousin pick me up afterwards and we went to A-1 Driving School over at President's Avenue so I can finally enroll for driving lessons. I enrolled for the 10 hours lesson and also requested for assistance to get my student driver's permit. There will also be a classroom lecture tomorrow and then I'll be scheduling my actual driving lessons sometime next week. Am so excited to do this. This is such a nice present for myself. It's high time I learned how to drive considering am 30 years old already.

Now all that's left is to see another doctor to check out the lump that they found during my physical. Then it's a vacation well spent.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Happy Holidays!

It's funny that I get to choose this picture as my blog christmas card since I live in a tropical country wherein the only snow we get are the fake ones (or the ones coming from certain people's heads). But it reminds me so much of Christmas due to the help of Hollywood films.

I read somewhere that a certain religious sect in the US is denouncing a certain company for changing their greetings from Merry Christmas to Happy Holidays. Apparently, the company wanted to encompass all religions in their greetings (Christmas, after all, only pertains to Christians/Catholics. Muslims and other religious denominations believe differently) thus the change in greetings.

I'm a Catholic so I should send out my greetings as Merry Christmas. But I do concede that I have friends who are non-Catholics/Christians; so instead, just let me bid you HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

My Christmas celebrations are a bit bittersweet. Leo and I spent Christmas Eve at my grandparents at Makati. Everyone was there, even my not-so-favourite relatives. Believe it or not, I do not get along with all of my relatives in my father's side. I have this image that I can get along with everyone, but I draw a line at those people and of course, there's a story behind it and since I have nothing better to do, might as well tell it.

When I was in College, I used to live with my grandparents in Makati since my school ends at 9 pm. The room I was given is some sort of communal room. It's a passageway from the main house to my aunt's store in front. I just lock it at night when everyone has gone home.

One day, I was going through my stuff when I noticed that the gold chain with a dragon pendant that my godmother gave me has gone missing. I didn't raise a fuss but kept quiet about it. I knew someone had taken it but I was not that fussy with my jewelry before. Some weeks after that, some friends took me to Duty Free and I did some chocolate shopping--which I stashed under my bed. When I got home that night, I was surprised to see that half of my stash was missing. I confronted my aunt (who fortunately was not a blood relative of mine--she's the husband of the brother of my dad) about it and she said she did not see anything (after I saw her discretely tuck a chocolate bar in her bag). I stormed out of the room and called my mom and believe or not, cried over the phone. In my misery, I did not notice that she was torn between laughing and getting mad. Thinking about it, it really sounds hilarious. I get upset over bars of chocolates instead of a missing gold necklace. She just told me to pack my bags and I'm going home the next day--which I did.

After that, I refused to talk to my aunt anymore. I barely acknowledge her presence and stay away from her during family gatherings. It does not help that her personality is something that you would really despise. She's jobless and she screams at her husband and her kids. Am not talking about momentary bouts of shouting, but the hell raising kind of screaming. She hits her kids and gets mad at them for every small slight. She also disrespects my grandmother and treats her like dirt even if she (my grandmother) supports them. She gives them food and money, yet they don't give her the respect and love she deserves.

Everything snapped a few months ago when she (the aunt whom I shall now christen as Evil-Bitch) pushed my lola causing my lola to fall on the ground. That made my tita (who I shall christen the Good-Bitch, and I mean that in a good way) go after her. The Good-Bitch is my lola's youngest daughter and I live with her and her sons. Though some people might see her as bitchy, she actually has a big heart. Her sense of humour is the wackiest that I've seen and she has informally adopted me and my half-sister.

But I digress.

The Good-Bitch called a conference with her brother (my dad) and other sisters and they decided, together with my lolo, to send the Evil-Bitch back to her home province together with their two small kids. They've tolerated her as much as they can but they draw the line of her hitting our lola.

My uncle (Evil-Bitch's husband) was quite bitter at first. I mean who wouldn't blame him? He's jobless and he feels like the whole world is against him. I still can't figure out why he's still insistent on keeping their family together even if he has seen that his wife is the way she is. But he got his act together and started joining the family during dinners and such.

But well, good things never last.

The Good-Bitch also informally adopted Evil-Bitch's two elder daughters. She took them out shopping and brought them to the parlor. It's no wonder that Evil Bitch's malevolence rubbed onto her kids. My two cousins repaid the Good-Bitch's kindness by lying to her AND their teachers. They were coming home late and they said that they had a project and the such. The Good-Bitch called the school and they said the contrary. So upon checking, she discovered that the two girls were going to an internet cafe and playing online games. Moreover, they're spreading stories at school that they have no money and that they're tired and hungry since when they get home, they still have to do the laundry and cook--when in fact, they do NO HOUSEHOLD CHORES. My grandmother does everything for them. We also learned recently that the Evil-Bitch has returned together with their two small daughters and are lying low at their apartment (which is located inside my grandparent's compound in Makati). Call me heartless but I gave no present to the Evil-Bitch and the two youngest daughters. As far as I’m concerned, they’re not supposed to be there. I was not formally informed by their return.

So a joyous celebration is marred by feelings of sadness, pity and annoyance. I actually pity my grandparents since they don’t need the stress at their age. They’re already in their 80’s and they need to relax and take it easy! But as it happens, my lola is still taking care of them and finds money to give to them. My lolo, is fortunately deaf so he barely hears whatever it is happening around him (unless he’s wearing his hearing aid). As one of my Christmas gifts to my grandmother, I gave her 3 moonstones which mean peace.

Leo and I left around 9 pm since we wanted to catch the 1030 pm mass at St. James Alabang. I was a bit teary-eyed in the car since seeing my siblings reminded me how much I miss them, especially Cheryll! She’s due to give birth next month and her stomach is humongous! I also saw her stomach move! It looked like a scene out of the “Alien” movie! I thought I saw a body part poke out of her stomach. I felt a mixture of awe and fright. Awe that she’s going to produce a miracle in less than a month, and fear since her stomach’s so big. I hope there won’t be complications during the baby’s birth.

I also missed our mom. She called earlier that evening and greeted us Merry Christmas. I just realized that this is our first Christmas as an official broken family and in a few years, we will further break apart when my siblings migrate to the US.

After Leo and I heard mass, we went to their house where I had a nice chat with his father over bread and queso de bola. Leo took me home around 1 am.

This morning, my tita left with her whole family to go to Pampanga and visit relatives. Leo picked me up before lunch and we went to their house where there’s another celebration going on. Leo’s immediate family and close relatives are having their own Christmas get-together. This is my second Christmas with them. This time around, Leo’s dad bought a Magic-Sing! I tried not to hog the mike and alternated with Tricie (Leo’s sister). Of course, I wowed them with my, ahem, singing voice. Even Leo’s mom was impressed (woohoo!!! Pogi points for me!!! Hehe).

I stayed there the whole day while I chatted with Leo’s relatives and ate lunch and dinner. I particularly love the salad. Leo’s two nephews got a junior drum set and guitar. Too bad I don’t know how to tune both. I was excited for them since it’s been a long time ever since I held a guitar and a pair of drumsticks. I could’ve impressed them further with my musical skillzzz. Haha.

In retrospect, Christmas celebrations for our family are fast losing their meaning. Anger and pride are more dominant than the virtues of forgiveness and love. Of course, I don’t exempt myself from that. I don’t know if I have indeed forgiven my aunt for what she has done to me and my family. But I just try to steer clear from her and I just know that it is NOT my life’s mission to make her life better. I have enough problems as it is and I do not wish to add to them. Besides, if any change should happen, it should come from them.


Second Week of Block Leave

My last week of block leave starts today. Since I spent last week preparing for Christmas, I will do my have-to-dos next week. I'm scheduling an appointment with a derma to have my warts on my face removed and skin whitening done on my neck (funds courtesy of Leo as his Christmas gift or me. Hehe). Will also be enrolling at A-1 to finally learn how to drive. It's high time that I learn how and hopefully, I get to practice it.

Friday, December 23, 2005

How You Live Your Life

You seem to be straight forward, but you keep a lot inside.
You tend to avoid confrontation and stay away from sticky situations.
You tend to have one best friend you hang with, as opposed to many aquaintences.
You have one big dream in your life, and you never lose sight of it.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Day 4 of Block Leave (I flunked Orgbep!)

I guess I didn't get my Christmas wish. I checked my grades today and I just found out that I flunked my Organizational Behavior WCE. So far, I've passed Marketing Management, Management Science and Financial Management. That leaves Management Accounting and Management Economics. Am sure about Accounting but not sure with Economics. We'll just see how that turns out. At least I know what to adjust come January 3.

Stayed at home today. Finished wrapping my gifts and baked another batch of cookies. My cousins invited me to go watch King Kong with them but I don't relish the thought of sitting down for 3 hours watching a gorilla fight it out with a t-rex. I did like the movie and it moved me to tears. Nevertheless, I'd rather stay at home and rest. Am still smarting over flunking that exam. It's my first failure in my MBA. Quite difficult to take.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Day 3 of Block Leave (Most Productive Day Ever!)

I really do hate cramming for Christmas. I just realized that I bought gifts for some people twice! Also figured that next year, am going to make my gift-giving less stressful. I went around Mandaluyong, Makati, Paranaque and Las Pinas just to give out gifts! Bahala na si Batman next year kung sinipag ako magbigay sa lahat. Whatever happened to the spirit of giving? That's what commercialization does to the spirit of Christmas. Somehow, I've forgotten that Christmas stands for Christ.

Anyway, it's been a productive day since I finished off my gift giving. After having lunch at Tempura (again) with a friend, I proceeded to the RCBC campus and checked if there's any update on our WCE results (I told my officemates that I hope this will be the last day I would see them. I am, after all, on vacation). When I checked the board, I saw that there are only two subjects (as of now) that have results. With trepidation, I saw that the other result was Financial Management. Other than economics, this is the other exam that I feared I would not pass. Scanning the list, I saw that there were a lot of failures. I looked for my ID number and lo and behold, I passed with a grade of 84! Thank God! At least that leaves Economics and Organizational Behavior as my unsure test. However, I still need to adjust my schedule as I need to take the Production Management WCE next term (I attended our Christmas party instead).

I then proceeded to Glorietta to meet up with my cousin since we’re going to Southmall to get his line/phone from Sun Cellular (which happens to be under my name. I have lines in all cellular phone service providers in the country). We left Glorietta around 3 pm and we got caught at the traffic jam at Nichols. We took the Merville exit and took the long route going to Las Pinas.

Upon getting home, I retreated to my room where I can escape the mischievous antics of my cousin/godson, Kiko. He’s really turning into a handful. Everyday, he finds new ways for me to get mad at him. Though there are times I would want to strangle him, a little voice reminds me that he doesn’t know any better. Like this evening for example, I wanted to watch the Spongebob DVD set which we bought last week. I set it aside downstairs since I wanted to watch it during my break. But when I looked for it, we could not find it. It seems that Kiko was last seen playing with it and they can’t remember (nor can he) where it was placed. In my frustration, I took his Jack-Jack pillow as hostage saying that I’ll only return it once he finds my Spongebob DVD. I know it makes me a bad example as a godmother but my patience is stretched to the limit.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Day 2 of Block Leave

Stayed at Paranaque today. Did go to South Mall to get my cousin his line from Sun. Also did some more shopping (for Leo's relatives).

When I got home, Mamu and I started baking. She made some biscuits and banana cake while I made my ever famous chocolate chip cookies. I think Mamu's still at it. Am so tired from standing up. I'll probably go to Makati/Mandaluyong on Thursday to distribute the gifts.

This is what I hate on cramming, I end up spending more than I should (sigh).

Monday, December 19, 2005

Your Birthdate: December 3

You are more than a big ball of energy - you are a big ball of hyper.
You are always on the go, but you don't have a type a personality.
Instead of channeling your energy into work, you instead go for fun and adventure.
Witty and verbal, you can have an interesting conversation with anyone.

Your strength: Your larger than life imagination

Your weakness: You tend to be pretty scattered

Your power color: Lime

Your power symbol: Lightening bolt

Your power month: March

Day 1 of Block Leave

This is my first long vacation for the year. Am on leave for the next two weeks--my block leave so to speak. Unfortunately, I won't be able to relax as it's the Christmas season and am still finishing up my Christmas shopping.

I woke up relaxed and thinking what I was going to do today. I was scheduled to meet up with a friend today but she ended up cancelling. I still decided to go to Makati so I can drop off some presents and do some last minute turnover.

I hitched a ride with my aunt. I asked to be drop off at South Superhighway corner Dela Rosa since my friend's office is just corner pasong tamo/dela rosa. I didn't know it was THAT far since I just walked that long block. I met with Ivy and exchanged presents with her. I then walked to the office.

I don't know how long that was but I was pretty sweaty when I got to the office. Fortunately it was not that hot.

After cleaning out my desk, I returned to Dita where I joined Mamu, Kiko and Lei to go grocery shopping at Cash and Carry. It was a mistake bringing Kiko since I swear, he really tried my patience. You can't stay mad at him for long though since he's SOOO cute.

In the car on our way home, Kiko spouted one of his quotable quotes which left all of us in the car gasping for breath from laughing. We were teasing him that he's not a big boy since he still sleeps with a milk bottle and with Mamu. He then said that when he grows up, he wants to have hair on his "putoytoy" (groin area)...just like his dad! Am still laughing just thinking about it.

It's a good day to start a vacation. I'd better go back to my gift wrapping though. We're going to bake banana cake and cookies tomorrow.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

It is done

Finally, the term is over (and I still don't know if I passed by WCE's except for one subject). I was not able to take my last exam yesterday since I attended our Christmas party.

Oh something about our bankwide Christmas party. It was absolutely fabulous! It was worth missing the exam.

For the first time in years, the Christmas party committee deviated from our usual norm of having the party at a hotel ballroom. This time around, they rented a function room at the M/S Philippines which is docked at the back of Manila Hotel. It's a really nice ship which has the amenities of a hotel and restaurant. Unfortunately though, the ship can only be booked for special functions. Nevertheless, it was really nice. Even the staff were very courteous and polite.

My only complaint is the food. It was pretty bland and tasteless. But well, the atmosphere and view makes up for it.

Our prizes these year were again very generous. The four (yes, count them, FOUR) major prizes are (from fourth to grand prize winner): Trip to Bangkok, Trip to Hongkong (with pass to HK Disneyland), Trip to Australia and Asian Cruise. All for 2 pax each. Minor prizes were SM GC's, TV's, I-pods (I-pod Nano 2 gig!) and other appliances. It was really great. Too bad we didn't win.

Leo and I got home really late. I slept at around 1 am. Leo picked me up early this morning since we had a class where we had to present Free-Space Optics network. We had to bring in resource people and it was really difficult. Murphy's Law very much applied to our presentation today. Even if we were deemed as one of the prepared groups, what should not happen happened. Laptop batteries ran out without any available port in sight, forgotten cable which was very important etc. Fortunately, we were able to get everything up and running for our professor and classmates to see the demo.

After class, we had lunch at this really nice restaurant at UM and we headed to Alabang where we whiled the time (Leo caught up with his sleep while I prepared our games for tonight's department Christmas party).

Leo and I were at my officemate's house a couple of blocks away from Leo's house at 630 PM. It was a pot luck party so everyone brought something. Good thing though since I had enough pantry money to buy prizes for our party (which are incidentally, a USB drive and an I-pod shuffle). My games were a hit (especially the pictionary jeopardy) and I won our singing contest (haha) with my "I Will Survive" and as tie-breaker "Stay".

That was my last Christmas party for this year. This is the first year where I'm not bombared with Christmas parties. Am not complaining though, at least am not that overloaded. Now I can get to concentrate on my gift-wrapping and gift-giving. I think am done with my shopping though. All I need to do is to do the wrapping.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


I previously recommended the massage services of Let's Face It--a one stop beauty service shop where one can get facials, spas and just recently, massages at a pang-masa (low) price.

Having a stressful job, am a big fan of massages and the like so Let's Face It was a nice discovery for me. I get to unwind without paying atrocious rates. However, I had a very BAD EXPERIENCE with LET'S FACE IT PARK SQUARE here at Makati. In fact, I just came from the shop and immediately tried to find an internet cafe where I can complain and tell the whole world how their service--specifically in that branch--sucks big time!

First of all, I was made to wait 30 minutes because their masseuse had to go on break for lunch since she just finished with a customer. Being the understanding person that I am, I readily agreed and reviewed my notes for my wce on Friday. When I was called, I was dismayed to see that the massage room is smaller than the rooms at Festival Mall and Greenbelt I. I had to squeeze through the door just to get inside. Moreover, the robes and towels that they provided for the shower were insufficient. They did not even have slippers!

During the massage, the masahista was talkative so I indulged her a little bit. Later on, another kind of talk was disturbing my moments of relaxation. Apparently, the massage room is located beside the waiting area of the derma people (the ones who does the facials and stuff. What do you call them? They're not they're pseudo-dermatologists). They were so noisy. Chatting and talking about their lives, cellphones etc. I managed to drowse off but was awakened by someone walking outside the room. Apparently again, the floor is made out of wood and anyone wearing heels cannot walk quietly across the room. Instead of feeling relaxed after that massage, I felt more stressed! I then decided that I should complain to at least someone. I complained to my masseuse and she said it's always been like that. Ok fine, so she's no help. When I paid my bill, I complained to the people at the counter and they just stood there all quiet without even acknowledging or telling me what action they should do. Where the heck are their customer service skills?! I don't know if what I said sank in but it was absolutely deplorable! I WILL NEVER PATRONIZE THAT BRANCH EVER EVER AGAIN. AND I SUGGEST THAT YOU GUYS DO NOT SO TOO.

I tried looking for the company's address in the internet and I can't even find a website. provided me with phone numbers of the branches. I guess I'll start from there. I will ensure that my complaint will reach their management.

Moral lesson: Do not disturb Sunshine's relaxation plans. She's pretty bitchy when she's stressed and deprived from relaxing.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Pseudo-Eraserheads (Ultraelectromagnetic Jam)

I've always been a fan of the Eraserheads. I first discovered them when my friends from the student press would play their songs. Further on, I learned the chords of their songs and jammed with my friends. "Pare Ko" then was our anthem. I would play rhythm while another would play lead and another would play bass. If my college memories had a soundtrack, it would be songs of the Eraserheads. That's why I was very much excited when I heard that there a tribute album will be released with new artists doing covers of E-heads songs. It was no surprise that the stores ran out of stock a day after the release. I was just lucky that I found the album at an SM Record Bar.

I quickly returned home excited at the thought of listening to my newly bought album. After the first pass, I never noticed that the album was done. All the singers sound the same without me distinguishing who is who. The only recognizable ones are Rico J. Puno (Ang Huling El Bimbo), Radioactive Sago Project (Alcohol) and Brownman Revival (Maling Akala). I also like FrancisM's rendition of SuperProxy, especially the guitars. I read somewhere that the purpose of having a tribute album is for artists to do their own version of the songs infusing their style and sound. But nothing different there.

Some of the songs do not jive with the artists. I'm still not comfortable with the fact that South Border did the "With a Smile" song. They made it sound like a love song! And whyever did Kitchie Nadal sing "Ligaya"? It's one of my favorite E-heads tune and she practically ruined it for me (what's the chuckle for?!). And the "Para Sa Masa" version of Various Artists just sounded so trying hard. Again, only Rico J. Puno was distinguishable from the rest.

Nevertheless, I'm glad that people still remember or want to remember the greatness and genius of the Eraserheads. I was just alarmed that the "younger" generation think that these songs are originals of the artists. I quickly corrected them and let them hear the old songs.

So excuse me while I dig out my CD of Ultraelectromagneticpop and listen to that instead.

On the 10th day of Christmas

I started the tedious task of gift-wrapping today since I'm meeting my friends tomorrow. I wanted to give their gifts by tomorrow since am not sure when we will be meeting again. I just wish that my gift-wrapping is as good as the picture above. Am not imaginative when it comes to design and patterns.

Speaking of patterns, am such a ninny when it comes to abstract concepts. I took some sort of test recently and it says that my weakness is abstract concepts and graphs freak me out. Actually, I never noticed that until I read the report. No wonder! The abstract portions in IQ test (What pattern comes next...) makes me feel stupid.

Anyway, going back to my gift-wrapping.

Am 30% done with my wrapping. Am still waiting for a second batch of giveaways to be delivered to me. I swear, next year, I will not cram again. Hopefully my leaves next year will push through. I allocated one week in November to do Christmas shopping and the such.

I resurfaced from my room around 11pm and tried to see how the party outside was progressing (my aunt is hosting a party for her diving group). I had another plate of Ate Perla's very delicious lasagna and watched the last episode of Pinoy Big Brother with them (Nene won by the way).

It's now 2 am and I should get some sleep soon. The weather is SO perfect for sleep. Cool and just nice. Anyway, I'll worry about my gift list tomorrow.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Should panic

I'm feeling lazy and tired lately. I attribute it to the really cold weather we're having right now. Last night was the coldest night that I had ever since I moved here. Maybe because it was raining and I made the mistake of leaving the fan on last night. When I woke up, I was wrapped in my comforter. To think I had no use for it when I used to live in Mandaluyong.

I have my eco exam tonight and a meeting with the vendor this morning for our netman presentation next Saturday. I'll be thankful when Dec. 18 arrives. It's only date available for Leo and I to complete our Christmas shopping! I really hope my leaves next year will push through.

I sure do hope I pass all my WCE's. I don't mind taking them again. I just don't like adjusting. But then, I could always take a leave of absence. We'll see.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Sunshine, the Card Shark!

My cousins came home yesterday with a poker set which they bought at the St. James bazaar. They invited me to play yesterday but Leo and I were watching TV and we were planning what we were supposed to do today. Incidentally, we had lunch at Circles at the Makati Shangri-la. The price is very steep (P1k/person) but the food was definitely worth it! The tastes definitely met my expectations, but not exceeded it. After lunch we returned to the St. James bazaar where I bought more Christmas gifts for my family and friends. We then proceeded to the Alabang Town Center were we had our gift tags made and bought some groceries for my pakain tomorrow at the office. Then we went home.

Anyway, after dinner, my cousins invited me and Leo to play poker with them. Since all my exposure to poker is what I've watched at Celebrity Poker, I had them teach me the basic rudiments of the game--but I did catch on quick. We played for two hours with the game ending after I cleaned out every player. Hah! They were saying it was beginner's luck. But what can I say? I do have a good grasp of strategy, thanks to my L5R/Magic:The Gathering playing days (I quit the game after I won a tournament--straight wins baby! I still kept my scorecard. Heh). Poker is a game that I would definitely play for fun--but not for real money.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Happy 30th birthday to me! (and my twin)

My birthday will officially draw to a close in an hour. It's been the most fulfilling birthday I've ever had. Although nobody gave me a birthday cake! I so wanted to blow 30 candles. Heh.

Leo picked me up at around 8 am and we arrived at SOS Children's Village Lipa in an hour. We had the opening ceremonies and it was time to spend time with our adopted "house". We brought them game boards and puzzles. It was fun doing all those things with them--especially the puzzles. One of the kids upon learning of my birthday, gave me 3 pieces of paper with birthday greetings. I was really touched and I almost cried. It was really great.

I also received numerous birthday greetings thru text and phonecalls. Am touched that some people who I expect to remember my birthday remembered, and even those who I don't expect to remember, remembered.

We left the village at around 230, afterwhich, Leo and I proceeded to the annual St. James Bazaar at Alabang. I saw some friends there and we started with our Christmas shopping. Bought some gifts for my family. Hopefully we can go back tomorrow and buy more stuff. But we're scheduled to have lunch at Circles Shangri-la. We'll just see.

I saw Leo's mom at the bazaar and she greeted me happy birthday. When we saw each other at the house, she actually had dinner cooked for me. I was again very touched by her gesture.

However, when they were asking how old I was, I was hesitant to say my age. When I was in my 20's, it was easy. But now that i'm 30, it just gets harder. I don't know why. Am I having some sort of quarter-life crisis? Hmmm.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Pre-birthday notes

Yay! Finished my Mansci WCE earlier. It's not as hard as I thought it would be. Actually, it's not that hard since it's open notes. I finished the exam early. Took me only a couple of hours to answer all 4 questions. Not bad :)

So that's five down, two more to go. I dread the eco exam since according to the people I've asked, it's really difficult. Good luck to me!

And oh yeah, I passed by Markman WCE. Wahoo! Got a grade of 90. Grabe. Out of the four other tests I took, Markman is the only one that has results. Gosh, I really do hope to pass Finman and Orgbep. I do not relish the thought of taking them again next term. Grrr.

I'm also not feeling very well tonight. Credit it to the point that I got caught in the rain going to school this evening. When I got to RCBC, I was soaking wet. My blouse was really soaked and so were my pants. So I just sat there in the room in my wet clothes while taking the exam.

It's also part of the reason why I'm a bit pissed at my SO right now. I called him while I was taking shelter at the underpass and asked if he has any sort of jacket that I can use since I'm soaking wet. Kesyo wala raw and all he has in the car is an umbrella. Ok sige, pero hello? Wala bang konting care diyan to ask if I'm ok? Or any effort to find something for me? Alam niyang I can get sick easily if I get caught in the rain.

Ok fine. Sige, puwede kong palampasin. When I got into the car, he gave me my birthday present. When I saw the long, rectangular box, I felt a bit disappointed because I knew it's not what I REALLY wanted, but what the heck, might as well see. When I opened the box, it's a bracelet--with lots of little hearts. It's really very nice. My aunt even praised it.

I guess I expected too much once again. Looks like a wedding next year would be off, and the June/July wedding that I wanted won't be happening. I just feel so depressed that I'm already 30 and not yet married and no kids. Yeah, I know there are other people out there like me (unwed and un-childrened--is there such a word?!) and that at least I have a boyfriend. But I already missed my marrying age by 3 years and my body clock is ticking fast! (It gets louder when you're in your 30's). I have an officemate who was adviced to take bedrest when they learned she's pregnant, and she's as old as me! What more pa when/IF (!) I get pregnant? Baka I have to lie down for the whole 9 months!

Aaargh! I feel horrible. My head aches and I feel like throwing up my dinner. Have to wake early tomorrow since we're going to Lipa for our outreach. It's a nice way to spend a birthday.

O sige, enough of the pity party. Looking at it in another perspective, I am indeed very lucky to have a guy like Leo in my life. Besides, nobody's perfect. It's part of his flaws that I've learned to love and accept. So what if I won't get married next year? There's always the year after that...and the year after that. Gosh, makes me want to think if I am indeed getting married. Baka I'm destined to be the "generous and eccentric" aunt. The one who spoils her "pamangkins" and "inaanaks". Oh well.

Darn, my headache is still there. Grrr.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A.P.E. Preliminary Results

Again, am not happy with the preliminary results of my A.P.E. Every year, they always find something wrong with me, and every year, it gets worse. I don't know if it's one way for the doctors to earn their doctor's fees but it really sucks.

First of all, I was not happy with the way they extracted blood from me. When I sat down to where the blood extraction was done, I readily offered my right arm as it is where I'm used to. But the nurse or med tech or whoever she was insisted that the left arm is ok. I was rather hesitant because I knew it was difficult to draw blood from my left arm (this is my third blood test this year--don't ask), but well, I can't very well argue with the person who's holding the needle. So I just closed m eyes, bit my lip and hope that they make it fast.

When I checked the spot a few hours later, I knew the medtech/nurse botched up the job since there was a big red/violet color all over the puncture wound (there was hematoma). Meaning the vein was traumatized from the needle. Not to mention my arm is hurting a bit--until now!

After the blood extraction, the nurse took my blood pressure. Imagine my shock when she said that it's 130/80. That has never happened to me before. I started to worry and things started to go downhill.

At the opthalmologist, I was told that my right eye has gone up to 500 from 450. At least my left eye is still at 450. Sigh. I really have to save for that laser surgery. I so need it.

And for the last check, the physical exam. The doctor managed to find a lump somewhere in my left breast. She said that it could just be hormones and will disappear after a few weeks. I was surprised since when my OB did an examination last September, she did not find anything. It did not stop me from worrying though. Have to schedule an appointment with my doctor ASAP.

So there you go. A high BP and a lump. I can't wait to get my blood test results. Oh and fairness to the BP, when I checked my BP again this afternoon, it's back to the normal 110/70. I'll have it checked again tomorrow. Just to be sure.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005


I'll be taking our Annual Physical Exam tomorrow. I'm a bit scared with the results since I was diagnosed with high levels of triglycerides, cholesterol and uric acid last year. Being the hard-headed girl that I am, especially in terms of food, I ignored my doctor's warnings and still ate what I should not be eating. Moreover, I think I gained weight ever since I moved to Paranaque since I'm being fed with rich Kapampangan food. Actually, I could handle that. I just don't like being diagnosed with high levels of blood sugar which can be indicative of diabetes. That I cannot take.

My 30th birthday is coming up. I hope this will be the mark for me to SERIOUSLY start losing weight. It's REALLY difficult and I envy people who can lose weight so easily. The problem with me is maintenance. I can start, but it's hard to maintain. Maybe somebody needs to diet/lose weight with me. I don't know. I don't know what else to do. Well-meaning people have sent me books and paraphernalia on the latest fad diets, yet, I haven't opened any of them. Why is it so difficult for me to say no to food? I must be suffering from some psychosis or neurosis. On the other hand, I could also be an emotional eater. Oh well.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

So Be It

A month ago, I was asked to be one of the master of ceremonies for a debut of a friend at Mandaluyong. I readily agreed since I miss seeing my friends and I had nothing planned today.

When my friend reminded last week of the event, I felt rather uncomfortable in going and I actually wanted to back out. But since it was too late and it would seem bad of me to suddenly change plans, I arranged my schedule with Leo and went to Mandaluyong in the late afternoon.

It was great to see my surrogate mother and father again, as well as my goddaughter. It's been more than five months since I've seen them and we did a lot of catching up. One news that greatly saddened me was when I inadvertently learned that the parents of my godchild had some sort of misunderstanding/disagreement which caused the mother to move out. I still don't have the whole story yet since the guy is still emotional and when I saw the girl last week, she did not say anything. I don't know how to handle the situation as these two people are very dear to me. I played a significant part in getting them together and I even coordinated their church wedding (and as mentioned, primary godmother of their daughter)!

I still hope that they can still patch things up and not be another statistic.

Friday, November 25, 2005

How the years have passed....

I lifted this from Chuyie, who in turn, lifted it from Vince. Reading it made me reflect on my life as well. Just in time for my 30th birthday.

25 years ago

I just added this since I just found out that I'm 5 years older than Chuyie. Gosh, what was I doing when I was 5 years old? Ah yes, my twin sister and I were enrolled at Think N' Try. I think it's a tradition for our family to study in that small nursery school in San Antonio Village. I remember celebrating our birthday there with a cake with the Little Twin Stars as decoration. I still have a picture of that event with Mrs. Tugade in the background.

20 years ago

Gosh, when you grow older, your memory gets more blurry. When I was 10, I saw my cousins who were based in the US for the first time. They came over to visit and I bonded with Dawn, the middle child (and a smart one at that). They told me about their home and it made me want to visit them at California. I started dreaming of what I'll do there and even visiting Disneyland! Well, that dream became a reality a year later when I left for the US in 1987. I stayed there for 2 months! My relatives there did not want me to leave and have already made plans for me to stay and study there. My dad however, was adamant that I come home.

15 years ago

High school life. I was a nerd when I was in high school. We had this little barkada called the DPS which stands for Dead Poet's Society (we sometimes change it to "Pwet") for obvious reasons (yeah, we love the movie). There were 6 or 7 of us in the group: Pam, Atha, Kay, Rae, Ruth and me. Oh, and Len (Kay's friend), would join us from time to time. All of us, except for Kay and Len, belong to a special class that does outreach work (Religion Extension Class) at the school's adopted community (Apelo at Pasay). Also, I remember watching Mobsters with the group and drooling over Christian Slater (whatever happened to him?!). High school was fun but it wasn't until college that I discovered boys.

10 years ago

I graduated from college when I was 20. Well, 21 actually. I had more fun when I was in college. The friends that I made then are the ones who I still hang out with until now--to think that they're all guys! We call ourselves the Circle of 8--again for obvious reasons. I was a freshman when the guys took me under their claws---err---wings when I joined the student press. They taught me how to play D&D and other role playing games which earned me the title, Queen of RPG at the press room. The original circle of 8 was Allan (the cleric), Rico (the DM), Mariano (the fighter), Chris (the kender-thief), Max (the mage), Obey (the telepath), Mike (the ranger) and yours truly (the bard). Other members moved to another school/country and were replaced by Edy (the dwarf) and someone else. The circle is still intact and we see each other regularly (except for Obey who's in the US and Mariano who has his family and art). I also had my first boyfriend/love when I was in college. Gosh, I can't believe I was once young and stupid! But well, we grow and learn from our mistakes.

5 years ago

I joined my current employer 5 years ago. I was also in an inter-racial relationship that time and my SO then and I were already makings plans of being permanently together. Thus, when I took the job offer, I was not thinking of staying long term. Another thing, my family was starting to fall apart this year. It was then that we learned that we have a half-sister and my mom wanted to leave my dad. It was the most painful and traumatic feeling that I have ever experienced in my entire life. The feeling was worse compared to the pain of betrayal of a former boyfriend (I was two-timed!).

3 years ago

My SO and I broke up this year. Our relationship was a rocky and difficult one and we lasted four years in a long-distance relationship. We also broke up more than once and all those times, I was the one that instigated the break-up. Although the last one, which he initiated, I made sure was the last. My mom also flew to the US to find a new life. It was supposed to be a temporary fix--for her to earn enough to pay for the debts that our family business incurred causing them to declare bankruptcy--but she has somehow made more permanent.

2 years ago

I started entertaining thoughts of taking up postgraduate studies. An officemate encouraged me and with further prodding from my mom, I decided to go for it. Good thing I did because it was there that I met my current SO, Leo.

1 year ago

I was helping my siblings get ready for their church weddings. BJ, Che and Claudine already got married in court. BJ had his church wedding last December while Che had hers last January. It was also then that we learned that my mom has divorced my dad (in the US). Yes, are now a statistic of broken families.

A Week Ago

Was the last day of my OIC-ship. It was the most stressful experience I ever had at work. Made me question if I'm ready to be a manager.


Or was that the other day? I gave Leo his early Christmas gift. Clue? It's Razor thin.


Had my Finman WCE. Not the worst exam I ever took--just difficult--since I barely know most of the subject matter. Had to do some serious self study. Also had dinner with Leo at the newly opened Good-ah (Open 25 hours a day) branch here at BF.

Makes me wonder what the next day/week will bring.

Four down, three to go

Took my Finman WCE today. I don't know if I passed but I was clueless in some computations. I can't believe it, to think this is my college major yet I suck! At least it's over and done with. I wish I feel that way with regards to my Prodman exam. We're scheduled to take it on the 16th of December! Imagine that?! And that's our company Christmas party! I don't want to miss that! Huhu.

Well, it just leaves Mansci, Eco and Prodman. At least I've passed the halfway mark already. Man, I just want this to be over!

Friday, November 18, 2005

Make or Break

A couple of weeks ago, my boss told me he's going on block leave. I was initially filled with excitement since it's a chance for me to prove myself (ahempowertripahem). Of course, there was trepidation since who knows what would happen in those two weeks. My boss did reassure me that he's just a phone call away and he's not leaving town.

On the start of my first week of OIC-ship, things were kinda ok. I was putting out fires left and right and I could still smile. My previous boss, AC, who's still with the company, talked to me and I was touched when she said that I should not hesitate to approach or disturb her if there's anything that I need. If anyone's picking a fight with us, I should tell her (she actually gave me permission to make "sumbong" to her. Of course, I only did that once. Nakakahiya naman). However, things started to take a downturn towards the end of the first week. I was expected to do things that was impossible to do and it was really SO stressful.

On the start of the second week, I was already counting the days until this Friday. Things started to get worse since the boss of my boss is also out of the office and referring concerns to them is getting to be more difficult. Moreover, the mother of one of my staff passed away last Tuesday. Other impossible and difficult things were referred to us and I could feel myself drawn so tight. Today, being the last day of the week, was the worse. I had a stress headache the whole day and my department was asked to finish some deliverables beyond the usual working hours. Not to mention, I had my Prodman WCE scheduled tonight!

So I just did what I had to do and hoped that nothing would explode at my face next week. At least my boss will be back next week so if other departments wants to raise an issue or complain about something, my boss will handle it.

I left the office beyond 6 pm hoping that the exam hasn't started yet. When I got to school, my headache got worse. After waiting for half an hour, the student secretary came out and said that our exam was cancelled for reasons I still can't understand. I should be relieved since I was not able to study as much as I should this week. However, I felt more frustrated and stressed since I still have to worry about it these coming weeks.

So I went back to the office and tried to get some more work done. I took a Paracetamol tablet but it did little to alleviate my headache. By the time Leo picked me up, I was ready to scream or cry, and in the privacy of Leo's car, I chose the latter. I broke down. I cried and I sobbed. I wailed and I weeped. I let go.

When I recovered a bit, I sent a text message again to AC, who helped me through some tight spots in the past couple of weeks. When she replied to my text, I started to cry once more. Leo thought that I was getting upset again, but I was just touched by the message. She said, "I have always believed in you Shine, you did well in your boss' absence in pulling the team together. Enjoy your weekend." That was the BEST thing I have heard in the last two weeks. Someone to just affirm and thank you for all the work you've done--even if she has nothing to do with your appraisal. Somehow, it made all the pain and stress so worth it. It feels great to know that someone who I greatly respect, believes in what I do and what I have done. It somehow nullified the feeling of incompetence that I was feeling earlier.

Now, I'm going to spend the weekend relaxing and pampering myself. I think I deserve it after all the stress I went through. Moreover, walking in the shoes of my boss made me think twice whether I would want to be in his shoes. I don't know if I'm strong enough, or smart enough, or "mataray" enough. I don't know how he (my current boss), does it but he deserves more than a pat in the back, for sure!

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Constantine and Mig

The Inquirer featured my favourite "idols" in their front page today. Constantine Maroulis (American Idol finalist) arrived in the same flight as Mig Ayesa (Inx's Rockstar finalist). I would very much want to catch Constantine in his shows but unfortunately, I won't be available during the times of his shows--both in Greenbelt and Town Center. Plus, I just realized that I don't adore him enough to jostle and wrestle with hundreds of other people just to see him. I guess I'll just admire him from afar (sigh).

As for Mig, he's early for his Dec. 1 concert since he was scheduled to sing in the Ad Congress closing. I wish I can watch all those concerts. Sigh.

Ah, speaking of the Ad Congress, their current radio ads are hilariously funny! There's the one with the diva singing "Per DTI permit 1007 series of 2005". But the one that really had Leo and I laughing our heads off was the one that had them using the name game to advertise generic names of medicines.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Cry No More

I wrote this review a few weeks back but was not able to post it. Well, at least it's still relevant.


CRY NO MORE by Linda Howard

I was not satisfied with the output of my favourite authors lately (Jude Deveraux, Judith McNaught,Julie Garwood), that was why I was pleasantly surprised when I finished Linda Howard's book that I found in Powerbooks.

It's a relatively old book published in 2003, but it still managed to leave an impact on me regardless of the publishing date. Morevoer, the scenes described in the book were so poignant and intense that I could actually feel and imagine myself being in that situation.

The story revolved around a woman who lost her child to kidnappers. She was stabbed and almost bled to the death in the proces. When she recovered, she was told that no ransom was demanded for her son. In her grief, she devoted her time and efforts in finding her son that she ignored her husband and their marriage which inevitably ended in divorce (the book also spouted a statistic wherein almost all couples who are victims of kidnapped children end up separating). Even if she didn't ask for it, her husband provided her with a generous alimony and a medium-sized condo unit which according to her husband, is his way of helping her with the search. He eventually got on with his life by remarrying and have two kids.

It has been 10 years since our heroine's son was kidnapped and it was only a couple years ago wherein she had her first solid lead regarding her child's disappearance. She also managed to start an organization whose purpose is to assist police and other government agencies in search for missing people--especially children. She pursued her lead and much to her consternation, had to team up with a person with questionable character.

In their investigation, they discovered that there was a human smuggling ring operating in the vicinity of their neighborhood. The woman's OB-Gyne, who is also their friend, reported births to the head honcho and he orders the kidnappings. They smuggle the babies to other countries where they are subsequently adopted--with the adoptive parents and lawyers believing that the babies are acquired through legal means. By then, their baby was adopted by an upstanding couple and was obviously and dearly loved by both.

It was here wherein the beauty of the book lies. I read this chapter again and again and still managed to shed tears in the process. I myself was left wondering how everything would end up. The woman spent 10 years looking for her son and now that she found him, what will she do? Will she fight for him or leave him be?

The next thing that happened was expected but it still surprised me. She met with her son's adoptive parents and informed them of the circumstances surrounding their son's adoption. Expecting that their son will be taken away, they were majorly surprised when they were handed a legal document with the biological parents relinquishing their rights to their child.

As the woman's partner said, it was the most hard-assed courageous thing that he had ever seen someone do. And so have I.

Giving up your child, moreover, having searched for him and devoted your life to him for the last 10 years, just like that, can take a lot from a woman. Her family and friends have been telling her to move on but she refused. Her partner even thought that she would run away with her son once she finds him. But all the while, all that she ever wanted, was to find out if he was alive, if he was safe, and if he was loved. When she found her answers, it was the time she let go.

Of course, she was a wreck afterwards. She spent three weeks crying and functioning like a robot until she woke up one day and clearly looked around her. She was numb, yes, but the pain was not that sharp anymore. Moreover, her partner stayed with her throughout her time of sorrow and need.

The mother moved and married her partner and had 3 kids. She learned to be happy again and managed to let go of the pain and guilt. And what made the ending happier, her grown son came to visit her of his own accord.

I loved this book because it made me see the other side of the fence. Call me heartless but I have low tolerance for people who refuses to move on with their lives, especially if it involves break-ups. I totally agreed with the mother's relatives and friends when they told her to move on. I was silently telling her to let go and rebuild her life. She refused to heed their advice, and in hindsight, I'm glad.

People have different ways in dealing with sorrow and grief. Other people take twice the time to move on, and other have different ways of closure. For our heroine, her closure is finding what happened to her son. Even if she did manage to move on, there will be that niggling thought of not knowing if her son is alive, or dead, or if he is alive, is he ok.

This book taught me to think twice before telling a person to "move on". It's not that easy until you walk in their shoes.

Worklife Balance

I had a nice chat with my friend who recently moved to our company after resigning from her job at a multinational company. She said that though her job at her former employer was very fulfilling, it took a lot from her in terms of time. She was spending so much time at work that she seldoms see her son, or her husband for that matter. Shorter working hours is what was promised to her when she moved to our company and I'm glad to know that she got what was promised to her. At least now, she gets to spend more time with her son.

I wish it holds true for me. I don't know where to begin on just to describe how things are at work. Even though I don't have a family to come home to after work, I try to leave my work problems at the office. Even if I still have to contend with stress (my Prodman WCE this Friday), at least it's not as debilitating as that with my job.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

You fit in with:

Your ideals mostly resemble those of an Agnostic. You are fairly ambivalent towards any religion or spiritual connection. You lead a very busy life and find that religion and spirituality are unnecessary to your life.

0% scientific.
20% reason-oriented.

Take this quiz at

I'm back!

Yehey, it looks like I'm back. Hopefully my DSL access will be permanent. I had my techie brother come over and fix my connection. Hopefully this will stop the intermittent connection.

Sorry for being so out of touch this past month. I had friends and loved ones calling and texting if I'm still alive. Well, I'm still alive and kicking.

Let me see, what happened the past month...

My brother-in-law who's based in the US came home before Halloween and he and my sister went around the country beach-hopping. We also joined them at Anilao. Here are some pictures.

This is my very cute niece, Chloe Mei. She's five months when this picture was taken. She's growing to be really fat and sassy :)She looks like my family. I don't know how much she weighs right now but she's really heavy. I carried her when they went trick or treating in the office. My arms grew weary and tired after a few minutes of carrying her. She was dressed as a piglet by the way :)

This was taken at Anilao when we went boating with my family. Leo and I arrived at Anilao at around 3 pm. It was such a stressful trip. One thing that I've learned about Leo in our 20 months of togetherness, is that he doesn't like going to places he hasn't been to before. It took a lot of persuading from me to make him come to this trip. Eventually, he agreed but not after shedding a few tears. Heh. It was a fun boat ride considering we stayed in the boat most of the time while the rest of my family, except for my pregnant sister, me and Leo, went diving. I'm a bit hesitant in taking the plunge literally since I was wearing my contacts at that time. I really wanted to join them but I was scared that water will pour into my goggles rendering me blind (try getting salt water in your eyes with your contacts on and you'll know what I'm talking about).

This was taken by my cousin. A really nice sunset of Anilao. You guys should see it. It's absolutely breathtaking.

This would make a really nice family picture, except we're not technically a family. Hehe. It's a nice candid shot and a pretty one at that. Everyone liked it because we're all smiling, especially Leo. Most of our pictures seldom has him smiling, so this one is such a treat. The little girl on my lap is my niece Chloe, and the boy that Leo's lifting is my cousin/godson, Kiko.

And this last photo features my whole immediate family and their respective spouses. That's my dad in the middle carrying my one and only niece. From the left to right are: Jeff and Claudine (my twin sister), Mhon and Cheryll (who happens to be 7 months pregnant now), Lorelei (my half sister) together with my dad and Chloe, then there's me and Leo and beside us are my sister-in-law Nessie (mother of Chloe) and BJ. Yep, everyone's married now except me and Leo. Hehe.

Lemme see, after the Anilao trip, we had the Halloween party at the office. It was really fun. Too bad I still don't have pictures of that. Am still waiting for my siblings to send me pics. I'll post them once I get them. Chloe is really cute in those pics.


My WCE's have started last October 17. Since then, I've already taken 3 exams and I feel good about them. That means 4 exams more to go. I still haven't received the results but I do hope I pass.


Though I continually gripe about my work, I was promoted to assistant manager last October 1. I don't know if it's something that I should welcome considering the promotion comes with additional job responsibilities, but at least it helps me appreciate my job more. If I was in the same position when I started my MBA, I would've access to lots of raw data which would help me with my pre-MBA and core papers!

Peter Parker's uncle was right in saying that "with great power comes great responsibility." I was never this responsible for so much when I was just a junior officer. Now I could feel the pressure and the stress. Not only to perform as expected, but to ensure that those under me would perform and exceed expectations as well. With our new organizational chart, I'm going to have 5 people under me. 1 junior officer, 3 permanent staff and 1 temporary staff. I've already requested for reorganization of workstations to enable proper working conditions. We're grouping all working teams together. I now think more about work, rather than of school.

My boss also went on block least starting last Monday. It means that I'm OIC until he returns. I'm glad I survived the past week and just one more week to go before my boss returns. During the past week I realized that the position as head of our department should be a manager position. As the case may be, my boss is only one level above me and one level less before the manager level. I hope he does get promoted soon. I don't know how he handles the stress that the job brings.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

DSL Woes

This teaches me to thank my DSL provider.

Just after a day of enjoying DSL access, it conked out on us. It's so damn frustrating! Now, I'm accessing the internet from my cousin's nifty little notebook using dial-up. *sigh* Looks like I spoke too soon.

I was also sick the whole week last week. It started with chest pains Sunday evening so I drank lots of water to soften the hardened stuff in my chest area (probably pleghm). And true enough, I had a running nose by Monday evening. It got worse Tuesday and by Wednesday when I went to our clinic doctor, she said I had allergic rhinitis and gave me antihistamine. I had my dad pick me up and bring me home by lunch time. When I got home, I drank the medicine and slept. When I woke up, I was burning with a 38.5 fever so I took a paracetamol. The next day, I felt worse but still went to work being month end. I only stayed for awhile though and hitched a ride home with my aunt. That night, my fever rose to 39 and I panicked. I had someone bring me a basin of ice water and I sponged myself down. My aunt arrived at 1 am and brought me to a 24 hour clinic where I was prescribed antibiotics. I took the day off from work on Friday and Saturday (from school).

I was supposed to go to a baptism of a good friend's daughter but I was too weak to go anywhere today. Even the trip to the church was difficult. I could only take baby steps and walk at a leisurely pace. Brisk walking and long steps will take too much effort.

My appetite also diminished the past few days. I could only consume small portions up to now. I was surprised when I could only finish half a cup of rice. When we ate lunch, I only finished a small piece of chicken breast and a lumpiang sariwa with half rice. Even when I took out JOllibee dinner. I only finished half a rice and 1 chicken joy (usually, it's a 2pc chicken!). I hope I can maintain this appetite. It'll do my body wonders, for sure!

During the time that I was sick, had a CSI: Miami marathon. Since I was not a regular watcher of the show (I'm not much into Horatio Caine. Gil Grissom is still the best CSI head for me! Even Gary Sinise's character is too full of angst. Gil Grissom is just a plain old nerd! Hehe), I finished the whole Season 1 and in the middle of Season 2. CSI:Miami is not much into relationships, it concentrates more on cases. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation is the best!

Sunday, September 25, 2005

DSL! Wahoo!

I'm now connected to the cyberworld once again. It feels great to be updated of all the ongoings in the cyber-communities. I felt so out of touch!

I should be happy that PLDT managed to install my DSL connection. Actually, it wasn't my application that was used. I initially applied first week of August, and when I inquired a few weeks ago, I was told that PLDT hasn't received my application. Apparently, the problem stems from the fact that the phoneline is not under my name. What pissed me off was that I submitted the requirements that they asked from me. So in my frustration, I had my aunt, who owns the phoneline, to apply the DSL line for me and wonder of wonders, the installed the feature after a day that my aunt called. Now how unfair is that?! I was already looking for other providers but much to my chagrin, only PLDT has the infrastructure to offer the service in our area. Man, I keep on forgetting that I live in the boondocks. I tried Sky and Globe and they gave me negative answers. I just had to suck it in and bug PLDT about my line.

Let me see, what's new in my world?

Well, work has been very stressful these past few weeks. As the saying goes, "greater power is greater responsibility." I'm technically the boss' right-hand girl now. I had to help my boss with budget planning and procedure setting. It meant late nights and tired evenings. It's the company's last hurrah before the year ends being the last quarter and all. Plus some new policies being implemented adds to the boiler. But I can't complain. At least I still have work.

My room is now my haven. I can stay in here the whole day (as long as the DSL doesn't conk out). The room has the right temperature. My aunt told me that it's the coolest room in the house. I slept last night with all the windows closed and just the fan running, and I was covered with a comforter. It's that cold.

Attended a mini-reunion last weekend with a couple of my former officemates. The two of them are two of the best people that I've worked with in my company and who I can call good friends. Sands just got married last year and gave birth to a really cute baby girl last July. She now works for her husband's company. Jas, on the other hand, is now a manager at a very big local bank. It was great seeing them again. I miss their company and the chats that we had everyday. They were a great support group at work and I miss having a "bestfriend" at work.

But well, life goes on. I can find new friends but there's a shortage of females in our department. It's a predominantly male one and it's really different. I know I should be used to it already, but nothing beats female companionship.

Ah well, lots of things to looking forward this year. One thing is that I'll be turning 30 on December. I don't know what my 30th year will bring but I do hope it'll be better than the previous years.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Internet and School

I haven't logged in for a week! My last log was last Tuesday when I was home sick. What kind of a record is that? To think I could not last before without checking my mail everyday. Good thing there's no classes, else, I'll be panicking.

Speaking of classes, I got my grades. 3.5 for both subjects (Financial Management and Organizational Behavior). I'm amazed with those grades. I was expecting a mere 3.0 for both. But hey, blessings are still blessings.

This coming term is a difficult one for me (sounds familiar. I think I say this every term). Honestly, this term belies difficult. It's time for my comprehensive exams. I have to take these exams where the professors check whether I learned anything in my year of taking core MBA subjects. It's a series of exams for seven consecutive weeks with a different subject matter per week. It's rather daunting since my reviewing skills will be sorely tested (try studying when you get home after a gruelling day at work. Tell me, how do you do it?).

If I pass these exams, then I have three terms to go before I graduate. That is, if things go according to plan. Man, I am so looking forward to finish this. There are few things in my life that I have started which I was able to finish. I have this annoying "ningas-cogon" habit. I mean, hey, look at my gym. Look at my other projects. If I do finish my MBA, I'll count it as one of my biggest personal successes.

I'm not one of those people who took up MBA as a career move. I took it because it gave me something to do. It gave me something to think about. Now, I just want to finish it so I can get on with other things in life.


I am so out of touch with what has been happening to our government lately. I tend to avoid the news whenever the impeachment issue comes up. Heck, I know more about the damage that Katrina wrought, than the impeachment issue. Although the other day, I was aware that there was an extended Congress session where it lasted 23 hours! At least we're getting our money's worth on the people we voted in congress. Now if they can do it wisely.

One particular person really got my fancy. Rep. Francis Escudero (he represents a province in Bicol. Sorsogon, I think) is a very interesting character. Whenever he talks, people listen. He's not prone to theatrics or hysterics. He's a voice of reason in the plenary chaos errr...session. He's calm and logical and I like the way he thinks. I may not agree with some of the things he said, but I admire him for his grit and wit. If he's going to run for national office in the future, he'll surely get my vote.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Sick Bed

Well, I'm home sick..again. This time, the fever came out. No wonder I'm still feeling bad this past week. I still haven't gone to the doctor but I hazard to guess that this is the respiratory infection that the doctor told me about last week. If the fever continutes to persist until tomorrow, I'm going to the doctor. With the dengue scare going on these days, you can never be too sure.

I knew I was going to get sick last Sunday night when I lost my appetite. Leo and I ate at Don Henrico's at Festival Mall Alabang. We ordered the solo pack of Buffalo Chicken, small 3 cheese pizza and asian pasta. After eating one chicken, I could not eat anymore. Leo was very surprised and so was I. We ended up taking half of the meal home.

I guess I needed the rest. The finals and work got to me. Moreover with another officemate resigning and I'm taking the slack. Good thing is his resignation put me at number 2. Meaning I got the second highest delegation of authority next to my boss. Hopefully it comes with a promotion too. But with the way things are going, I could just hold my breath. Anyway, I promised my boss I'll still be staying for a year (since it will take me that long to finish my studies, after that, I have to rethink my position) or until a better offer comes along.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Finals and Friends

Finals is finally over! Although one of my professors asked us to submit a reaction paper by Wednesday. At least it's not as study-intensive as exams. Since I'm now done with my core subjects, it's time for my Written Comprehensive Exams next term. God help me on that one.

We had our class party for my finma suject last night at Red Box. It was a blast! Being the Videoke fan that I am, I readily won the Vidoeke Champion title with my "I Will Survive" performance. Yeehah!


I had some sort of mini-reunion with good friends from College, Cess and Beth last Thursday. Even if I had exams the succeeding day, I took half the day off to meet them, and may I say, it was a half day well spent.

I really treasure the time that I spent with these two lovely women. The last time the three of us got together it was 1997. Quite a long time ago. I love these girls, oops, women. They knew my shennanigans in college, held my hands when I cried and provided support when I much needed it. I never could ask for more.

It's too bad that we live in far-off places which prevents us from seeing each other as often as we want. Beth is based in Canada and was in town for a week only on her way to Korea (study thingee). Cess lives at the northern end of Metro Manila, moreover, it's difficult for her to go anywhere since she has to contend with logistics in bringing her whole brood with her.

It's great to see how far we have gone in our lives. We are all successful in our choices and looking forward to more years in our lives. Beth and Cess are happily married and they're awaiting for my own wedding (so we can swap our own "marriage" stories). I have never known such a very supportive bunch.

Nevertheless, I still appreciate the time that each of us have spent apart from each other. The distance will help us appreciate each other more and will make us look forward to our next reunion.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The Greatest Story Ever Told Gone With The Wind Clark Gabled

We had our Finman finals last night. As usual, the answer is a quote. Since I had this teacher before in a different subject, I was ready to find the quote (in our last exam, it was "Muhammad Ali The Greatest Love Of All World Champion" and I was the first one to finish the finals within 30 minutes). It seems that I was overconfident because after 2 hours, I was still not yet done and I was the only one left. It was after a few minutes that I realized that the quote was backwards! I quickly wrote down the letters backwards and I got the correct answers. I emerged from the exam room triumphant!

Unfortunately, I was sick while taking the exam. I joked that if I was in good health, it would've taken me half of the time to finish it! I'm now here at home recovering. I don't know if it was something that I got from my dad. But I don't feel too good. My asthma also decided to resurface and joined my list of current body ailments. At least it gives me time to finish my Orgbep paper.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Sick and Tired

Well, not me actually.

I rushed my dad to Makati Med's ER twice this week. Last Tuesday, he asked to be brought there since his fever was quite high and the meds he was taking was not working. The doctor prescribed a high dosage of paracetamol and a drug for influenza. A couple of days later, I brought him back since he was vomiting whatever he was consuming. I was so worried that I could not concentrate in my job. My officemates were sympathetic though. Oddly enough, most of us at work have relatives who are sick or is in the hospital. I guess it's the season for sickness.

My dad's better now. It's really difficult to take care of him when I'm living an hour away. I had to rely on my brother to watch over him when his fever was a dangerously high 39C. I hope he'll continue to be of good health. As my grandmother said, "Mahaba ang buntot ng daddy mo. Pareho silang mag-ama." I didn't get that saying though and she had to explain it. It means that my dad, like my grandfather, will live a long life, although when they get sick, they act/feel like they're going to die.


This coming week will be a hell week for me. It's our finals week and I have finals tomorrow for financial management (oh by the way, we got a 3.5 for our second reporting for this subject. We really made up for our dismal 2.5 first reporting) which is purely objective type and a final paper due on Wednesday for Organizational Behavior and finals also for that subject on Friday (also objective type). On Saturday, we will have our class part for Finman which will be obligatory. I have never looked forward to a vacation than this coming one next week.

It's also the birthday of Leo's mom this Thursday. I forgot to take pictures of my gift for her but it's surely going to earn me "pogi" points! (I hope!) There are some left here at home but it's basically something like paper mache eggs. They're really VERY pretty and would make a very nice conversation piece. People who visit my aunt's house always notice the things and I knew I had to give Tita Jojo a set.

Sunday, August 14, 2005


Here are more pictures of my niece. She's becoming such a joy. I treasure her weekly visits.

She's grown to being fat and sassy. That's my dad holding her.

She looks so adorable here.

Saturday, August 13, 2005


I applied for a DSL line last week and I still have to wait for the installation. It's really difficult to work at home without an internet. Actually, I do have internet access at home but it's dial-up and it's difficult to find a place to work near a phone line. Am currently doing this in school (during class. Hehe)

I can't wait for this month to be over. It's our finals in a couple of weeks and I still have 4 papers due. I hope our finals won't be as tough.


We had our GA yesterday where the interim results of the company's performance was announced. I still doubt the good stuff that they played up in the presentations. I just hope that we end the year at a good note. Our performance bonus highly depends on it.

To prepare for our presentation, I was tasked (together with our division secretary), to head off to Divisoria to find the costumes needed for our performers. It was not exactly a walk in the park. We had to commute and it was raining! Plus, we had to lug around four heavy plastic bags. My companion was also not a happy camper. She's not much into walking and was already complaining after an hour or two of walking around the "malls". I had to leave her at McDonald's while I went around looking for our items in the list.

When we got back to the office, my manager was patiently waiting for me so we can finish the powerpoint presentation for the arrival of a foreign guest. I was so drained by the end of the day.

Our efforts paid off though. We won the cheering competition (not after we were roped to perform with the dancers. At least there were a lot of us dancing and jumping onstage). The cash prize was not much but it gave us bragging rights. Wonder how our Christmas presentation will turn out (as the host of yesterday's event said, "Masyado nating kina-career ang mga Christmas presentations)?


Here are BEFORE and AFTER pictures of my room.

This is what my room looked like when I first moved. Note the boxes on the left side of the room.

This is what my room looks like now. The picture is kinda dark since it was night. I'll post more detailed pictures next time.

The house is Spanish style, but it's relatively new. The lot and old house was actually owned by my grandparents but my aunt and her husband bought the lot and house, demolished the old house (which was built in the 1970's) and built a new one which is really admired by many. I know I took pictures of it before but I can't find it right now. I'll post pictures next time.
Your Patronus is the Horse! The horse is a symbol
of physical and spiritual power and is also a
bearer of burdens. He is a powerful ally
against your enemies.

That your Patronus is a horse says that you are a
strong person--strong enough to bear others'
burdens when they become too much. Be careful
to consider yourself and you will be a terrific
witch or wizard.

What is Your Patronus? Version 1
brought to you by Quizilla

Saturday, July 30, 2005

New Home

It's done!

I'm an official residence of BF Homes, Paranaque since last Thursday. It was such a difficult move. It took me 4 cars and a 4 wheeler truck to bring all my stuff from Mandaluyong to BF. I'm half unpacked and there's still 4 boxes that I need to figure out where to put.

Once I get my laptop installed properly, I'll post a picture of my half-fixed room.

I miss my family. But well, they'll survive. I'll survive.

Anyway, I'll post more once I settle in.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Room Makeover

I'll be moving to BF by the end of the month, or after the baptism of my niece (which would also be my goddaughter. Yep. I'm going to be a "ninang" for the 11th time). We might be moving on the 31st. By August 1, I'll be in a new room. Any ideas again on how to design my new room would be very much welcome.

I'll post photos next week. The room is located at 2nd floor and towards the back of the house (back-corner right if you're facing the house). It's bigger than my current room. There's already a king-sized bed there, four closets and there's still room left to spare. Since it's a corner room, there are windows on two walls. The windows are made of capiz shells.

The room needs all the good vibes that it needs. It's former occupant is my cousin who had a falling-out with his mom (my aunt) and he moved out to live with our grandparents. I'm thinking of lighting scented candles or putting some religious images or something. I dunno. I'm actually clueless when it comes to room designing. *sigh*

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

It's Really Gonna Happen!

All the while, I had doubts that my plans will be well-received by my family. I was surprised and touched that they were actually very supportive and understanding.

When I talked with my Dad yesterday, he actually agreed with me. When he brought me to the office this morning, he admitted to me that he'll miss me. I wanted to cry when he said that, instead, I choked down the tears and told him I'll still visit him at Makati. I always knew that I was a Daddy's girl but to hear my dad say he'll miss me really broke my heart. To think I'm not yet getting married. No doubt I'll be a walking faucet when/if my wedding date comes.

I called my sister-in-law to my room this evening so we can discuss finances. When I asked if her if she knew my reasons for moving, she said that she was not told, however, she somehow had an idea that I would want to start saving (I actually have NIL savings now). I started crying then because I felt so guilty for leaving them like that. What made me cry harder was when she said they understood why I chose to move out and even supports my decision. I'll be staying with them until they can find a new apartment and then I'll finally be moving to BF. I checked our rental contract and it says that we have until the end of August to do that.

It looks like I underestimated my sister-in-law because she knows how to handle finances. I asked her how they managed to budget their forthcoming household expenses a nd the figures, justifications and solutions that she gave me were downright logical. I gave her an assignment of cataloguing our furniture so we'll know which item will go where. By the time we move, our furniture will be going to three places - Makati (for storage), their new apartment (wherever that maybe) and BF. I've already identified the pieces which I will bringing with me.

I'll miss my siblings. We became closer and forged our ties when our parents separated. Being the eldest child, I became their surrogate mother and advisor. We cried together, got mad together and laughed together. But it's time I live my own life. My siblings are all married--our youngest sibling and our only brother has a wife and child, my youngest sister is pregnant and living with her husband in QC, while my twin sister is just waiting until she graduates and she'll be leaving for the US on May next year. I should be glad that they're all starting to settle down with their respective families. It is indeed time that I should start preparing for my own.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Newly Laid Plans

I left BF today. I was almost in tears before I left the house because I had to say goodbye to my aunt. She was here for 10 days and we spent 7 days out of those 10 days together. I will truly miss her.

On the eve of her departure, the three of us (Auntie Norie, Auntie Rosa and me) talked about my life. (In their words, I'm the "favorite" niece in the father's side of my family. For whatever reason, I have no idea.) When they learned how much I was spending for our household expenses, they were shocked, actually, so was I. When Cheryll moved out, she and her husband still continued to contribute to the household budget, but when Cheryll became pregnant, they begged off from their contribution since they had to save for their baby. Of course, it would not be right of me to pitch a fit, so I absorbed the deficit. When I computed it again last night, I was surprised to know that I was spending 20% more than what was budgetted for me. Moreover, 65% of my income is going to the family expenses. I was even told that what I'm doing is unfair for me since the people that I'm supporting are already married. By all rights, they should be supporting themselves (and their respective families), instead of me. Auntie Rosa even offered her spare room to me in case I would want to move to BF. Basically, I would be by myself while my siblings will be left on their own.

I couldn't sleep last night after we had that talk. I really wanted to move to BF. Transportation is not a problem and my auntie already waived any rentals (I did insist that I'll have DSL installed and pay for it). Moreover, I get to spend more time with my favourite godson and Leo's residence is nearer too! Best of all, I get to save! It's really very advantageous for me to move to the South, but I have to think of the repercussions.

I very well cannot, in my conscience, just desert my siblings like that. Right now, I'm supporting my youngest sibling (and his family), as well as my twin sister. I have no problems with my twin sister since she's leaving for the States by March next year. That leaves my brother and his family. I'm going to talk with my dad tomorrow and propose to him my solution. I'll install my brother and his family at our grandparent's house in Makati where my Dad is also residing. My twin sister can also move to our relatives near her school where she can stay for the time-being. Our current maid can also move with my siblings to Makati where she can serve as nanny for the baby. I think I have it figured out. Hopefully my dad will agree to my proposal. He might balk since moving to BF would mean he won't be seeing much of me. I have to ensure that I'll visit him at least once a week.

I hope I did not forget to factor anything in making my decision. I really do hope that this will push through.