Sunday, June 22, 2014

My stupid mistake #2

Our department at work headed to Island Cove recently for our team building event. I decided to bring my car instead of riding in the bus because we needed a vehicle to bring our props and drinks to the event. I also wanted the freedom of being able to leave whenever I wanted to and not waiting for everyone else (last year, someone woke up massively late and we had to wait for him for quite a while). I asked some of my teammates if any of them wanted to join me and a few of them did.

Our event started at around 10AM and since it was still early, we couldn't check into our rooms yet. After lunch, a couple of my teammates needed to get their stuff from my car. It was at that point that I remembered a story my college friend told me that he knew someone who once left a CD on the dashboard of their car in the middle of the day and the immense heat caused the CD to warp. I don't know if that story is true or not but one of my favorite CDs was still in my player. We get to my car and as my friends took their stuff, I put the key in the ignition so I could turn the player on and pull out my CD. Thankfully, it was still okay. I stuff the disc in the case and put it inside the glove compartment so it wouldn't be in direct heat. Since my remote control lock wasn't working properly - battery issues maybe? - I lock my car from the inside and lift the door handle as I slam my door shut. Of course, it was at this point that I realized that my car key was still in the ignition! OMG!!!

The good news was that at least my engine wasn't running. The bad news was that my stuff, the stuff of my other teammate, our props for the evening program, and our drinks were all in my car. I asked resort security if any of them could help me unlock my car but after checking it out, they said they couldn't. It was already 2pm at that point and I realized that the most feasible option was for me to go back to Manila and get my spare key. As if things weren't challenging enough, my house key was also locked inside my car. Ugh!!!

I didn't want to hassle anyone else by asking them to do driver duty for me and I also didn't want to borrow someone else's car. So I took a baby bus from Island Cove to SM Bacoor and there I look for a taxi willing to drive me to Manila and back. Thankfully, my mom brought my spare house key with her and her office isn't so far from where I live. So I told my taxi driver to head to my mom's office first so I could pick up my spare house key before heading home to get my spare car key.

It was 4:30pm when I finally got back to Island Cove with my spare key; thankfully the traffic wasn't so bad. However, as the ignition in my car was kept on for a few hours, I was worried that my battery had already been discharged. True enough, later that night when I finally got our props and drinks out of my car, I checked if the engine would start and it didn't. Damn. I decided to worry about that the next morning since I didn't need to drive that night anyway.

I asked help again from resort security the next day, but this time to help jumpstart my car. It took a while for them to get jumper cables. We used the resort shuttle to help recharge my car battery and when I finally got my engine to start, my teammates and I hurriedly headed back home. Of course, we made sure that there would be someone driving back to Manila after us so that they could help us just in case my car ended up stalling along the road (thankfully, it didn't). I now make sure that I use my key to lock the door from the outside to make sure that I don't inadvertently lock it inside my car again. Of course, the best way to get everything sorted out is to have my car remote fixed. Hopefully I can get that sorted out soon.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

My stupid mistake

Last week, I missed the first birthday party of my friend's son because I was so extraordinarily tired during the work week leading up to it that I ended up sleeping through my alarms. This weekend, the daughter of my other friends was celebrating her 7th birthday so I was intent on making sure I wouldn't oversleep for a second consecutive weekend.

Thankfully, I woke up early enough on Saturday and as such, I had time to get cleaned up, buy a gift, and have lunch. However, I got a text from my mom asking me if I could join the family for a late lunch. I figured that, since I had already gotten the gift, I could join them and just be a bit late for the children's party. After all, our family lunch was only around 15 minutes away from the party venue.

So that's exactly what I did. I ended up being with my family for about an hour before I said goodbye. I put the gift in my car and headed straight for the party. By that time I was already about an hour late but I thought it still wouldn't be too bad. Once I got to the venue, I was surprised that there was a lot of available parking. Well guess what? It turns out I wasn't an hour late. I was actually 23 hours early! OMG! I'm not sure how I got the date mixed up in my head but I was absolutely certain the party was on Saturday when it apparently was on Sunday. Great. And to think I made sure not to stuff myself during my late lunch because I thought I would be eating again during the party.

I told the parking guard that I indeed got there a day early and drove off quite embarrassed. I may not have slept through my alarms but I clearly didn't pay careful attention to the invite I got. Hahahaha. Thankfully the party venue wasn't so far away from where I already was and the traffic wasn't so bad. I can at least laugh about it now. Oh and yes, I did successfully make it to the party earlier today. :)

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Crying For No Reason by Katy B

I saw this video being played on BeTV I think and I've been hooked ever since. Check out English singer and songwriter Katy B's song "Crying for no reason":

video uploaded in youtube by KATYBVEVO

Ever since I discovered it, there hasn't been a day when I didn't listen to it. The great thing about Katy B is that she sounds just as great live as she does in the recording. Check out this stripped version of the same song which she performed live. Amazing!

Friday, June 13, 2014

My nephew's graduation

You know you're getting old when none of your nephews are in grade school anymore. :) It was a first for me since the graduation of my youngest nephew was held on a Sunday but that was actually better because it meant we didn't have to take time out from work and we didn't have to go through heavy traffic.

I asked my nephew where he wanted to eat for his graduation celebration and he said he wanted TWG. The closest one to where we were was in Shangri-La Mall so we headed there after the ceremony to have a very late lunch (or a very early dinner). Unfortunately, the dish that my nephew loves - a pasta dish with pesto sauce I think - was no longer in the menu. He ended up trying a salmon dish instead (which he enjoyed) and partnered it with a side of truffle fries.The food in TWG is quite expensive actually but everything we ordered was quite good (I really liked my Sauté of Beef).

After our meal, there was still some time for us to go around the mall before the Sunday mass at the mall. We went to Datablitz since my older nephew wanted to check out gaming headphones (he had been saving money to buy one) and I ended up getting my other nephew Minecraft for XBOX as a graduation gift. We headed home after mass and since most of us were still not very hungry after our late afternoon meal, we didn't head out for dinner anymore. Another great day spent with the people I love.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Google celebrates Philippine Independence Day again

Last year, I wrote about Google featuring the Philippine Independence Day on their main page. They did it again today. This time, the theme is bayanihan.

Thanks, Google! :) And Happy Independence Day to Filipinos all over the world!

Monday, June 09, 2014

Nadal wins historic French Open #9

Rafael Nadal is still the King of Clay! He claimed his unprecedented ninth French Open title after defeating Novak Djokovic in the final. Way to go, Rafa!

photo courtesy of Clive Brunskill (Getty Images), link to photo provided by

While Nadal had already thrust himself firmly into the record books with many of his prior achievements, this French Open is hugely important for so many reasons:

  • No other man has won this many titles in a single Grand Slam event. Next to Rafa's 9 are six people (two in the open era) who have won 7. When taking into account the women records, Rafa now matches Martina Navratilova's 9 titles at Wimbledon and is 2 shy of Margaret Court's 11 titles at the Australian Open.
  • Also, no other man has won 9 titles in a single event. Guillermo Vilas won 8 titles in Buenos Aires (and of course Nadal himself won both Monte Carlo and Barcelona 8 times as well).
  • Nadal is the first man to win five consecutive French Open titles. He also won four in a row, from 2005 to 2008.
  • He now matches Pete Sampras with 14 Grand Slam titles, going up to 2nd in the overall record. Roger Federer is the only man to have more majors, with 17.
  • His win-loss record at Roland Garros is an unbelievable 66-1. His only loss came at the hands of Robin Soderling back in 2009.
  • Rafa has now won at least one Grand Slam event each year for 10 consecutive years (2005 to 2014). This is a men's record.
  • Winning the French Open title also allows Rafa to stay at #1. While Novak is very close to him now, Rafa has almost no points to defend in Wimbledon. A good showing there will allow him to remain #1 until at least until the US Open.

And to think that I almost didn't watch this match! Prior to the French Open, Novak beat Rafa four times in a row, most recently in the Rome final which was also played on clay. I was also worried about my unlucky streak this year with athletes and teams that I solidly root for. When I quickly looked at the score after getting home, I saw that Rafa had lost the first set very easily at 6-1. I almost headed out to watch a movie. Thankfully, I stayed to watch the match as I got to witness Nadal make history.

Congratulations Rafa!!!

Sunday, June 08, 2014


Well, well, well. After being a regular customer of online deal sites such as Deal Grocer, Cashcashpinoy, Living Social Ensogo, Groupon Beeconomic, and Metrodeal over the last few years, I have now purchased my 400th voucher. Crazy! In my defense though, I have successfully used most of the deals I bought and I have carefully selected the ones I get. Given that I don't cook at home, most of what I purchase are restaurant vouchers so I reckon I must have saved a decent fortune already LOL. (Of course, I'm sure I would save an even greater fortune if I cook; maybe I should get that sorted out soon.)

Saturday, June 07, 2014

Dinner at Lucca

One of my friends, Eliza, recently celebrated her birthday and as I sent her my birthday greetings, we realized that it had been a really long time since we last saw each other. In fact, our group of friends all hadn't seen each other in a while. It was at that point that we decided we needed to organize dinner.

Since we all live in different parts of the city, we decided Ortigas would be the best place to meet up. Apparently, there's a relatively new section in Megamall - Fashion Hall - that has some new places to eat, including the legendary Michelan-star rated Hong Kong restaurant Tim Ho Wan. We didn't eat there, though. Instead, we had dinner at Lucca Bakery. The food here is quite affordable and most of us enjoyed what we got although Eliza's open-face omelet was more like a frittata.

There were only four of us, including Fred and Marie, but as we had not seen each other in a while, there was a whole lot of catching up to do and everyone had many stories to share. We ended up hanging out for more than three hours and if the place hadn't closed for the evening, we probably would still be there now. :) It was a great evening spent with great friends and hopefully, we get to keep our promise to see each other much more frequently than we have in the last couple of years.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

The Enchanted River in Surigao del Sur

Wow, this place is absolutely stunning! Now I have to add this to the list of places in the Philippines I want to visit. Of course, I will need to do a bit more research about this Enchanted River in Surigao del Sur.

video uploaded in youtube by Michael Yap

Monday, June 02, 2014

A night at Relik and Center Stage

Last Friday, I met up with my friends from our band club at work. We decided to go to Relik so we could participate in their weekend open mic night. My friend Calai and I both got a turn. She performed Beyonce's Love on Top while I took a shot at U2's Beautiful Day. Towards the end of the set, my friends RJ, Julie, Jef and Ric all performed together as a band, giving the house musicians a bit of a break before they came back on stage and closed the second set.

Of course, it is to be expected that once we had all gotten our performance juices flowing, we wanted more. So we made our way to Center Stage to cap off the evening with some karaoke. It was close to 3AM when we got there giving us just a bit more than an hour before the place would close. Still, we managed to stuff in quite a lot of songs even in that short period of time. Personal highlight of the evening was me singing Say something by A Great Big World with Julie (although of course with Julie singing harmony, we ended up doing the version that features Christina Aguilera). I really do love this song. Hopefully I get to perform live at some point.

We all had such a fun time that the plan now is to do this more often. How much more often still remains to be seen given we are all very busy and our schedules don't always match. However, since a couple of us in the group didn't get to sing in Relik's open mic night, I am guessing we will want to go there again soon so they get a bit of airtime themselves.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Wedding at Paco Park Church

My cousin Troy tied the knot a couple of weeks ago in St. Pancratius Chapel in Paco Park. My entire family was there to celebrate this momentous occasion with him.

I had been to Paco Park a couple of times before but it was only on this third visit that I got a chance to take photos and really appreciate the beauty and historical significance of the park.

The dome-shaped chapel features beautiful Romanesque architecture.

The interior of the chapel itself is very simple with its white ceiling and walls. Its size makes it ideal for intimate weddings, although in our case the chapel was packed.

Paco Park is where Jose Rizal was interred after he was executed in Bagumbayan. There is even a marker in the park along with a bust of Rizal to commemorate this event in our history but I unfortunately didn't see these. What I did see was the Gomburza memorial. It was only on this visit that I found out that the remains of the three martyred priests, Mariano Gomes, Jose Burgos, and Jacinto Zamora (collectively known as Gomburza) are buried here.

The Gomburza memorial

It was a really unique wedding too. My cousin and his wife decided to do away - at least partially - with a lot of the formality of a typical wedding. They did this by wearing sneakers. The asked the rest of the entourage, including my brother who was one of the secondary sponsors, to do the same. The motif was red and black so the primary sponsors, including my mom who was a ninang, were asked to wear black or red, or a combination of both.

The reception was held a short distance away. Troy's new mother-in-law runs a catering company and they provided the food and everything was really good! Probably the most interesting part of the program was the money dance. I had only been to one other wedding that featured this Filipino wedding tradition. Troy and his wife Joanna danced while guests pinned money to their clothes as a wedding gift.

It was a truly wonderful day spent with family. The fact that I got to learn a bit more about Philippine history made it even better. Congratulations and best wishes, Troy and Joanna! :)