Friday, December 30, 2011

Hanging out and partying hard

Christmas is the time for meeting up with family and friends. This year was no exception.

Causeway + Pino Bar and Resto
Earlier in the month, Cesar was in town for a week. He didn't have a lot of time to meet up, but Tim, Basil, and I managed to have dinner and drinks with him the night before he left. Cesar said he missed Causeway so we had dinner there, and after filling ourselves with dimsum and Chinese food, I suggested that we go to Pino Bar and Resto for wine and dessert. It was the first time everyone else apart from me had been there and Cesar even mentioned his surprise that there was a chill-out wine place in that area. Everyone seemed to enjoy the ambience as well as the artwork displayed throughout the resto, and it was fun chill-out night that allowed us to catch up with each other.

Minute to Win It + Pinoy Henyo
My team at work celebrated our own Christmas party with a party highlighted by two sets of games. The first set involved games that were adapted from Minute to Win it. Our team ended up in last place LOL. However, we exceeded expectations in round 2, Pinoy Henyo, where we won. We also had a truckload of food and drinks, and a whole lot of laughs.

Beef Bourguignon in Cav
To celebrate our last workday of the year, I met up with Lala and Anna in Cav. I purchased a voucher from Deal Grocer a while back and I decided to use it to treat Lala and Anna in Cav as my Christmas gift to them. I selected the French Beef Shank Bourguignon with Pearl Onions and Croutons, and I can say two things about this: (1) it was indeed good for about 3 people as advertised, and (2) OMG it was soooo good!!! Anna was about an hour late and by the time she arrived, Lala and I had already tried several different wines already using the Cav Card. We also ended up ordering salpicao (it, too, is really good, but it was just overshadowed by the utterly amazing Beef Bourguignon!), and the Artisan Cheese Platter. It was a really expensive night but I think we all deserved it. Plus, it's always fun to enjoy food and wine with people who enjoy it just as much as you do. :)

Brenda, my teammate from my first company, moved to Australia more than a decade ago and I don't think I have seen her since. She was in town for the holidays and we decided to have dinner in Romulo's in Tomas Morato. The sucky thing was that the traffic that night was unbelievably horrible!! Brenda and Anna were there at around 730pm but Chari and I both got stuck in Edsa and we ended up getting to Tomas Morato at close to 9pm. Nevertheless, we stayed until closing and had a great time catching up.

Normally my college friends have our annual Christmas get-together on December 31. But most of us had conflicts on that day. As such, we decided to have dinner in Trellis on the 27th. Trellis was a regular haunt back when I was in college so it was great for all of us to once again feast on sisig and lechon kawali. We were thinking of going to Serenitea in Katipunan after dinner but we weren't sure if it was still open, so we just scooted over to the crepe place next door to have coffee and dessert.

Conti's take-out for Lunch
Since I missed the Christmas dinner of my work and ex-work friends, Joh and Raffa decided to organize one more get-together during the holiday break. I joined Tim, Steph, Pau, Gi, Ian, and Cathy (plus the kids) in Raffa and Joh's house where we enjoyed Conti's take-out. Gifts were exchanged, and my present to Sophia, an arts-and-crafts type mosaic angel fish, was apparently a big hit because Sophia asked Joh and Raffa to purchase the rest of the collection. Cool!

Hanging out with my high school gang
The next day, I ended up having a late lunch with Iona, JP, and Joyce. We were supposed to meet up at noon and I was supposed to bring dessert, but I woke up incredibly late so I got to Iona's place at around 1:30pm (they told me to forget the dessert and just head to iona's place ASAP). Once again, more gift giving. Iona told me that Aya was into jigsaw puzzles and musical instruments so I got her a piano/xylophone and 4 puzzles (Aya immediately started working on one of the puzzles). Anna arrived around 330pm and I managed to see her a bit before I left at 3:30pm to meet up with my family.

Party time in Republiq
Jesse was leaving the country for a job in Singapore so we decided to go clubbing one last time before she left. I met up with the gang in Robert's house first where we got started with wine and other drinks and enjoyed some Wii games. At around 1130pm, we head over to Republiq. We stayed in one of the tables outside the clubbing area and ordered a bottle of vodka and a lot of sprite. After consuming the vodka (didn't take too long :)), we headed into the main area to let loose and dance.

Obviously, my December was once again packed to rafters (what's new?) but I am pleased that I still get to spend time with friends and family.

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