Random Blah

As mentioned in my earlier post, I now have T in my life, hence, I have him to consider every time I would go on travels. I would prefer to be with him than to travel to far-flung places by myself. Australia would be a place I would definitely frequent to these next few months since T is based there.

While waiting for things to happen to me, career-wise, I started targeting options. I have always been into wellness and fitness since young. I started working out because of vanity and it continued on as part of my lifestyle as an adult.

This interest brought me to enroll in a Basic Sports Science course for fun. This course ran for a month.Luckily, I passed it. A few weeks after that, I decided to again, enroll in a 200hr Yoga Instructor Course. As the course title entails, it would be rigorous 200hrs of theories, practice, teaching practices, and exams. I am hoping to complete this course in 3-4months without having to sacrifice my love for pole, running and my budding love affair with swimming. Twenty four hours is not enough for me. I need more!

Point of this blog post is, I may not go to plenty of new places in the future, I may not be successful yet in my pursuit of migrating to Australia, I may not get everything I want as fast as I wanted it to happen but, I am not waiting passively while whining. I am doing something in the meantime. I may be a Jack-of-all-trade-master-of-none, I don’t care.I don’t mind. I only have one life and I plan to make use of it productively.

 

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Questions

I sometimes ask myself, am I just being very critical of the current or am I just afraid of change? Why does everyone have to be uniform? Why does everyone have to speak the same language? Why does everyone follow the same rule? Why does government impose on things we have to inject into our bodies?Am I alone in the idea that civilization is sometimes killing self-expression and uniqueness? And worse, free-will? It feels like, in reality, it doesn’t exist anymore. Are we bound to be robots or puppets of powerful individuals? If so, this is our so-called existence in a civilized world, Prize of Civilization!

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Thoughts on religion

I have heard of so many people making fun of people who believe in religion. Some of them are comedians, some are random people from Facebook and some are people who are/were important to me.

I am not religious. I just believe that there is a higher being out there and it can be anyone. No religion is better than the other. We are under one home and we only have one Father and/or Mother, whoever they may be. They are just there, watching over us.

Despite hearing so many things about God and Religion; and despite my own rational questionings, I still prefer to stick to the idea of having a God. Not because I was ‘brainwashed’ and that I grew up with it but also I have my own very intimate relationship with both God and religion. I am sticking to the idea. Here are some of my idiosyncratic reasons:

Knowing that there is a higher being out there taught me humility. It reminds me of my humanness and that I am so small. Not only by kneeling down and praying all the time, the idea of humility can transcribe in other forms in the course of our human existence. Like, sometimes I wish I’d feel good to act as if I am so awesome. Having humility reminds me that, NO, I am not because there is still so many things to learn and experience in this world. If one already thinks he/she is perfect, there will be no more room for improvement and learning. Religion taught me humility, that I will never be perfect and it’s ok because I am just HUMAN.

Part of humility and accepting humanness is Forgiveness. Because I know I am imperfect, I learned how to forgive others’ shortcomings as well. Nobody is perfect. I’ve learned how to embrace and love people as a whole regardless of their own sorts of humanness.

Having a religion taught me to trust. Trust that there is is always something better coming up. I know that I will never be alone. Inside my delicate humanness, there is a rock. A rock that adversities cannot crush. It is called trust.

Having a religion taught me that I belong.I have family anywhere in the world. I travel a lot and I’ve always felt welcomed. I know that anywhere in the world, I will have a family, an inclusive one. A family that will welcome even my friends who are not of the same faith or even those who hates it. We all are welcome!

We all have our own beliefs and I am not forcing anyone to come with me, but, I will try to be humble, I will try to forgive, to trust and to welcome everyone into my life. I will try to love and through my so-called love, people will feel…people will know….that it is ok to believe in God.

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19 Feb 2018

Crowding in small spaces
Destined to explore the sea
Why are you settling?

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11 Feb 2018

Trails of heartaches and disappointments, sunsets.
Pavements of success and luck, sunrises.
Passing through them again,
Walking through them, viewing them back through your eyes,
I will never mind.

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Phuket, Thailand: Revisited

10 – 17 Feb 2018

The last time I was in Phuket was 3years ago by myself, that was after a few days in Myanmar. I went there before to learn pole dance and to do some trekking. I didn’t have time to visit Phuket’s pristine beaches then.

Hence this time, when T picked a place for our holiday, I was still very much thrilled to go back there with him. I knew, this time, I would be able to visit their beaches.

10 Feb 18

We flew in together from Singapore and was picked up by the hotel transfer. Since it wasn’t check in time yet, we decided to walk around town under the blazing heat of the sun. After 2 or 3 hours of walking, we decided to have lunch and coffee in a restaurant near the beach, then we checked in.

Our accommodation was at Bangla Road, Absolute Bangla Suite. I was never sure about how this hotel works but it is somehow under a company named Absolute World. Anyway, after a few hours of rest, we then, waited for the sun to set at Patong Beach. We had dinner and our first massage for the trip and headed home.

It was so fun to see T get mesmerized while walking along Bangla Road. He has never seen something like that before. A happening road closed for parties, sexy women/men and lots of pubs and bars. His eyes were wide open like a child who went inside the Disneyland for the first time. I love this guy! He’s full of soul and child-like!

11 Feb 2018

We went out a bit late just again, for walking around, lunch, and coffee. After dinner, we decided to watch Muay Thai for the first time. We both like martial arts, hence both truly enjoyed the matches that night. We made bets on who’d win the matches. We scored 4-4.

Muay Thai Match

I knew that children were also doing this sport but I just didn’t prepare myself to see them really fight in front of my face. These small children were doing deadly sports like this, will it affect their development because of continued trauma to their young heads and bodies? I am not sure….

 

12 Feb 2018

Yay! Today was our first time to really go to the beach! We just went nearby…Patong beach! We soaked with thousands of other people. Yeah, it was crowded but still, it was good. We had our breakfast, a mixture of coffee, fruits and junk food by the beach.

After which, we went home, showered and walked for about 10miuntes to the Jungceylon shopping center to watch a movie. We decided to watch 12 Strong, a true-to-life war movie which made me want to travel more to Kazakhstan and Afganistan! The mountainous areas were so breathtaking!

After the movie, we went to have dinner and headed home.

13 Feb 2018

We decided we would check out less crowded beaches, hence we took a tuktuk to Paradise Beach. He priced the ride at 500 Baht (we were told that we could bargain til 300). Unexpectedly, there was a charge of 200 Baht per person to get into the said beach. No wonder it’s less crowded.

When we got in, it wasn’t crowded but there were still a bit people on the beach. Surprisingly, most of them were fit, especially the women. T enjoyed sight-seeing much. I enjoyed looking at this beautiful beach, with very fine sand and clear water. There were a few small fishes and crabs everywhere. It was beautiful. Despite being a bit expensive, I thought, going there was worth-it if one wants to escape the busier and bigger beaches.

In the afternoon, we were lured into attending a talk about the Absolute World programme. It was ok but I do not want to discuss it further in this entry. After which, we had dinner, our usual Bangla road walk which I found really enjoyable especially with T, our second massage, and cocktails before concluding the night.

Oh! We also decided to plan the rest of the week this night. Next day was a city tour, day after would be to Similan Islands and then after 2days, we’d watch the Simon Cabaret show! This made me even more excited for the days ahead.

14 Feb 2018

Happy Valentine’s Day!

We went out late to go for our city tour. We hired a taxi for 6hours which costs 1800 Baht. We decided we wanted to visit the Big Buddha by ATV, go to Ao Nui bay for a quick swim because it was a small beach based on the map, so I thought, it would be less crowded then, to Promthep Cape for a stunning view of the sun setting by Andaman Sea.

It was my first time to ride an ATV in a real terrain, hence, I was so terrified at first. T made me feel comfortable by lying to me, saying that he was a very experienced ATV driver. Only to tell me afterward that this was the second time to ride an ATV! Luckily, we arrived at our destination, Big Buddha and back to the base safely.

ATV Ride to Big Buddha

We were all satisfied with the locations we decided to go to except for the Ao Nui bay. It was crowded, the water was not very clear and the beach was rocky. We didn’t anymore stay long for we didn’t really like the rocks.

 

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Promthep Cape’s Sunset

 

We concluded our Valentine’s day with a dinner and another massage. hahaha

15 Feb 2018

We were supposed to be picked up at 6am by Sea Star company for our Similan island trip, but they turned up very late at 8am! As usual, Tim was calm, I was agitated. The road to the Pier was about 2 hours. We were late for breakfast and our boat had left thus, we were placed in a non-English boat. We had to take a 1.5hrs fast boat ride to the first island, where we snorkeled for about 20mins. Water was so clear. Reefs and fishes were visibly abundant. It was beautiful. We had lunch and visited a few more island and snorkeled for a bit more.


Despite having a bad first impression because of their tardiness, the trip still proved worth it. Fishes were abundant as the tourists in the islands. Yes! It was , sadly, very crowded. Luckily, not many chose the snorkeling option. It was a good place for snorkeling and I just couldn’t imagine, how much more interesting it can be for diving! Visiting this island gave me the urge practice how to swim better and possibly learn diving.

We were also provided dinner before we headed home. It was a good trip! We had another dinner afterward.

16 Feb 2018

Last day in Phuket. We decided we would just chill. We met up with K, an Absolute staff for breakfast before we headed up for another massage and another movie, the Black Panther which made me feel like traveling to Africa because the movie was based in a fictional African land called Wakanda. Haha

After the movie, we were picked up to watch the Simon Cabaret Show. I wasn’t impressed the first time I saw it back in 2014 and I felt the same way this time. Costumes, arrangement, and props were really good but the performers lacked energy and power. They must be tired? Performing for three shows in a row isn’t easy. T seemed unimpressed too. Anyway, I only brought him there to see how beautiful some men could be.

We had our final (for now) night walk along Bangla road and concluded the night. I was exhausted, to be honest. Tomorrow we would be picked up at 7am.

17 Feb 2018

Adventure hasn’t ended.We accidentally wetted T’s passport and we thought that could be the cause of him not being able to fly with me to Singapore. Unfortunately, they found a graver reason to prevent him from flying to Singapore. His passport was no longer valid for 6months. It only passed 2 days, not even expired! T knew that he needed to renew his passport soon but he didn’t realize that it wasn’t anymore 6mos valid. Sadly, he didn’t fly with me. We had to get him a new direct ticket from Phuket to Melbourne.

This is LDR! So sad!

I have to find a job in Melbourne! I have to!

I have enjoyed my sweet time traveling for a week or more with family, friends and/or mostly, by myself. I am not used to traveling ‘together’ with a boyfriend. Surprisingly, I was as happy and excited with him. I definitely learned more about him and myself during this trip.

I’ve never actually stayed in just one place during holidays. I would always move around and transfer accommodations subsequently. This holiday was different yet it still proved enjoyable. I am certainly hoping I could still bring him along to some more places with little compromises on choices of accommodations and transportation options.

He’s a good man. He will understand. I hope! =)

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4 Jan 2018

With a heavy heart,
Crushed, flushed, screams from his inside.
With love, mouth shuts!

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Bye 2017! Hello 2018! (Resolution Continued 2017)

2017 had been eventful for me. Here’s to revisit what happened to the year-that-was:

My traveling life was still decent. I was able to visit a fair number of 3 new countries, Morocco, Turkey, and Taiwan. My favorite was, of course, when I traveled with my family in Taiwan. I was also in awe as I rode a hot-air balloon for the first time in Cappadocia, Turkey. The view was ethereal back there. I also rode a camel for the first time in Morocco.

January – Philippines
February – Morocco
March – Malaysia (Penang)
April- Philippines + Malaysia (Kluang)
May- Taiwan
June- Switzerland
July- Malaysia (Sibu Island)
August – Turkey
September – Philippines
October – Indonesia (Batam)
November- Australia
December – Malaysia (Kluang) + Philippines + Indonesia (Batam)

The first quarter of the year, was, however, a bit heavy as I mourn for a person who decided to turn his back on me due to my humanness and imperfections. Third quarter took a 360′ turn, as I met an interesting human being which made me somehow believe again that I could be treated better and that I deserve a little bit more of someone’s bravery. He became my boyfriend by August. In my standards, events turned out very fast between the two of us. We were both brave and ready that was why.

It made me think that losing people or things wouldn’t really turn out to be disastrous all the time. I think I was molded and prepared to be a better person in order for me to be ready in full force when the better one arrived. The loss also made me appreciate the man who appreciated and accepted me despite my imperfections, hence, my gratitude to him is overflowing.

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The drawback of having T in my life right now, is, my traveling life might change a little. I don’t know if I will still be able to travel as much especially I know that we are in a long-distance relationship. Why would I go to Central Asia when I know my love is in Australia?

He said he might join sometimes. I hope he does! He came to Singapore 3x since we met, went back with me to the Philippines and went 2x with me in Batam, Indonesia. We are planning to go to Phuket next month. I guess I might be re-visiting all those places I’ve already been and the experience would still be completely different because I am with another person. I am willing to try that but, as I have learned a lot, especially independence, in solo travels, I hope I wouldn’t lose the ability to do so. I hope.

Work-wise, I have been looking for new countries to migrate to since 2014. I had been obsessed to a few like, Indonesia (cos of a job offer which took ages to be processed, hence I got tired) Canada (cos of my friends there, I attempted to apply there, got accepted and eventually, while processing my papers, I lost the job to a local), European areas and now, because of T, I wanted to try Australia. I am looking for a job closer to him and it’s tougher because they have enough of my profession in their area. Maybe I should consider other professions? In line with this idea, I enrolled in a course completely different from what I am currently doing. I am taking Basic Sports Science with the hopes that I could also be a fitness instructor in the future.

This year, I will have more non-solo travels. I will still try my best to go elsewhere every month. Also, I will study and learn more things, maybe those related to my future career-change (maybe) while still, doing my best to find a job near my T. Hope to accomplish all these this year!

Again, Happy New Year!

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New Year in Batam, Indonesia!

31 December 2017 – 1 January 2018

T had been to Singapore twice, hence, he had already been to most of the touristy places around here. As a Christmas present, I didn’t want to give him something material. I wanted to give him memories.

He had been telling me that he liked to go back to Batam, hence, my Christmas gift to him was New Year Batam overnight experience which included a city tour, overnight stay at Novotel Hotel, fireworks and a New year’s eve party.

Weather that day wasn’t very friendly. It was pouring heavily the whole day and it limited our movements a little bit. First stop was a visit to a factory that specializes in our favorite product, coffee. We had fun learning more about it, tasting the different kinds available in Indonesia, like Long bean, Peaberry, and Luwak. T went for a bit of coffee shopping as well.

The bus ride was made fun by the narration from our tour guide. To cap the tour, we went for a 1-hour full body massage. According to our guide, people usually go to Batam for 3Ms Makan (Malay word for Eat). Markets, Massages. Massages which were usually very cheap as compared to Singapore standard.

We checked-in after the tour. Rested for a bit then headed out for a New Year’s Eve dinner buffet with entertainment. After filling our tummies with these delights, we decided we would go to our room and rest till a few minutes before the New Year strikes.

I suddenly woke up and it was 2 minutes before 12am! We ran out of the room and we still at least saw ninety-five percent of the fireworks display. I was asking myself, was that a sign? Haha

We checked out and went back to Singapore the next day.

Anyway, Happy New Year!!!!!!! This was my last trip of 2017 and first of 2018. Hopefully, I/We can have more next year!=)

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Christmas in the Philippines!

22-26 Dec 2017

22 December

Despite the sky-rocketing airfares, T and I decided to go to the Philippines in December. I haven’t been going back for Christmas because I thought New Years are more fun back home but since he wanted it, I just decided to submit.

His flight arrived first. My ever-supportive parents picked him first. My flight landed later that night. To my surprise, my parents weren’t by the arrival area when I exited. They were busy with T, apparently.

I decided to book in Aurum Makati because they allow pets there (with extra price). It was not so bad considering it’s around Makati area and it allowed our Bambi. We stayed there for a night because the plan the next day was to tour Manila.

23 December

We checked out at about 10am. Our first stop was, of course, Luneta Park. Unfortunately, the monument itself was being renovated. We couldn’t completely see it. We just walked around for a while. I introduced a little bit about Jose Rizal and why he is our National Hero.

A few kilometers away from the famed park, we went to Intramuros to visit the Fort Santiago. This was where Jose Rizal spent most of his last days in prison before his execution. From there, we saw Binondo, Manila Cathedral, and Pasig River. I have not visited this place in a very long time hence, going there reminded me of the historical events I have long buried in my remote memory. Difficult to access!

We were looking for a place to have lunch in Binondo, but searching for parking space was terrible. We gave up after a while. We just decided to go somewhere with confirmed parking space….SM Manila! We had our lunch of Filipino food there. We had lechon, Dinuguan, Lumpiang gulay, Lumpiang sariwa, ginataang halo halo, pancit etc. T was up to try it all….ONCE! He isn’t a big meat eater, unlike me and my family. This is one great point why I liked him. He’s my opposite (when it comes to diet). We’ll see if he could actually bring me to the healthier side of living. We’ll see.

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After lunch, we drove to one of the oldest universities in the Philippines, University of Santo Tomas (UST). I am who I am because of this place. I studied here from secondary until my masters degree. I gave T a tour of my Alma Mater. Being in this place made me feel humbled. This school shaped me.

We, then, drove to Mall of Asia to have coffee, passed by Manila Bay, then home. But before we reached home, we decided to give T a taste of Filipino street food, like Balut, all kinds of barbequed animal parts like blood, intestines, fats etc. He, again, politely tried everything…once!

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24 December

A place not so far away from my hometown, Tagaytay. We decided to visit the popular volcano at the center Taal Lake, the Taal Volcano. Before that, we had lunch at Leslie’s. We ordered more Filipino dishes. T already had a favorite, Halo-halo!

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We then drove almost incessantly to Quezon City for dinner with my sister and her fiance. T isn’t a big fan of seafood as well, but he still tried. We headed home after that.

We reached home almost midnight. We ate a little bit more, exchanged gifts and concluded the night.

25 December

We just stayed home and mealed together. The essence of Christmas was to be with our loved ones anyway and that’s what we did. We drove to the nearest shopping mall, though, in the afternoon for a massage, grocery and to watch fireworks.


26 December

We just stayed home and bonded. We flew back to Singapore that night.

 

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