Thursday, March 29, 2007


my friend lay asked me to come with her to the mbrs lines ticket office at north harbor yesterday to buy a ticket to boracay for our friend heidz. as there's nothing else to do at home after work (i finish work at 2pm), i eagerly accepted.

after a long, lethargic bus ride from ortigas, i met lay at stop and shop. she treated me first to a cheeseburger at jollibee, seeing how spaced out i was. one cheeseburger and three glasses of ice-cold water later, i was ready to go. ;-)

to get to north harbor entails us to ride a jeepney to divisoria, then get on another jeepney just after tutuban that passes through moriones in tondo. the jeep will then drop us off in front of the gate leading to piers 8 to 12. (the mbrs ticket office was in pier 8)

for reasons totally unexplainable, we encountered traffic at the top of the flyover going to legarda. oh, well. i guess it's another case of what i call senseless traffic--lots of jeeps with little or no passengers at all crowding the stretch of legarda up until mendiola, waiting for imaginary passengers. grrr.

recto was no different. in there, however, concentrated volumes of smoke and fumes from the countless jeepneys pervaded the atmosphere, making it difficult to breathe. it's a totally new experience for me, though i've ridden the jeep to divisoria before (that one doesn't count, though, coz it wasn't traffic at the time). at any rate, we got off the street just before reina regente and walked the rest to the next jeepney terminal. there are people everywhere--kids playing on the sidewalk, kids begging, people rushing to their destinations, more people selling their wares from the sidewalk, and even more people just hanging around. "itaktak mo" by joey de leon was blaring from the speakers at different intervals. ooh, the place was so crowded, noisy, dirty, and the divisoria "scent" permeating the whole scene. this may sound strange and please don't think i'm being sarcastic here but i was actually enjoying everything. i don't know why myself, but i just do.

it was a bit scary when the jeepney finally dropped us off at the gate to piers 8 to 12. i'll just put it this way: there are just too many "temporary settlers." we decided right then and there to ride a taxi after buying the ticket.

the walk from the gate to pier 8 was surreal. there were trailer trucks and container vans everywhere, forklifts, kargadors etc. (i even saw a guy urinating on one side of one of the trucks parked on the sidewalk! eep! but then again...) it's like being transported to a different dimension.

the trip to pier 8 took an hour and a half. we only spent ten minutes in the ticket office. ain't it just.

thank God we got a taxi immediately.

thank God the driver was nice and kind and didn't mind it at all that he had to drop two passengers off at sta. mesa and san juan.

the taxi ride back home was nice, too.

Friday, March 23, 2007

random sunrise thoughts

This is what I see every God-blessed morning (read: crack of dawn) from my office.
the sun begins its timeless ascent above the dark green hills
enveloped in the warm cocoon of clouds

it still emanates a golden glow
illuminating the sleepy town below


Tuesday, March 20, 2007

usapang kamatis

Monday, October 16, 2006

last night we had a late-night grocery spree. my brother and i went to the veggies section to get some tomatoes. the tomatoes were the native kind and... dirty. as in with bits of dirt.

"dirty, dirty, dirty," i muttered to my bro in my best british accent while i took my place beside a short guy wearing a green polo shirt and proceeded to pick out tomatoes.

the short guy turned to look at me a few beats later and said, "if they still have dirt on them, it means that they're still fresh as they came straight from the farm."

ooh, ooh-kay. "oh, ok." i smiled at him and continued to choose firm ones. fresh. farm. yeah, right. i rolled my eyes inwardly. kung hindi ka lang cute jan...

my mum came over, took one look at the tomatoes and announced, "ano ba yan, ang liliit! magkano?"

54 pesos a kilo.

"ano?! ibalik mo yan. merong malalaki sa kabila na mas mura pa."

i made sure to look around first for the short green guy before pouring the tomatoes back into the basket. he wasn't around anymore.

goodbye, tomatoes.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

lakaran galore ramblings

i've been dying to walk along the streets of quiapo once more even though i didn't have an exact plan where to go. i saw my chance yesterday when my friend heidz asked me to accompany her to the salon earlier in the afternoon. i warned her to wear comfy shoes as we're going to walk... not really aimlessly, but ya know, just walk wherever our feet bring us. =)

on the fx ride to quiapo, i told heidz about globe lumpia house which serves really good fresh lumpia for over 50 years. we instantly craved for it and i immediately texted my pa where the eatery is located. he replied that it's just on the street behind quiapo church but he doesn't know the name. i should have listened to him right then and there and went directly to that street. but noooooo. there were just too many people and stalls around that we did not see where the lumpia house is exactly. or maybe it's just me and my semi-bad sense of direction. anyway, we passed by ma mon luk--and we went back and forth along quezon ave. asking people where it is, and they all replied, "banda roon pa." eh san nga yung "banda roon"? we were so hungry by then that we just gave up looking for it and just walked over to carriedo by way of sales street (where we saw the philippine school of criminology) and bought these japanese cakes with cheese filling. back on familiar ground (at least, for me), we passed plaza lacson and went over to escolta where we went on to the promenade. we saw one of the new boats on the river just leaving the escolta station and for fun, we decided to ride the boat on our way home.

one japanese rice cake for each of us ain't enough so we ate dinner at tasty dumplings in ongpin. both of us got the humongous pork chop rice and i ordered an extra of kuchay dumplings. yum-yum! after polishing off our food and an hour of chika, we walked along ongpin as heidz wanted to buy a mooncake. i bought red monggo hopia and ube hopia (for my mum) at eng bee tin, then we went on to salazar bakery. it was my first time inside salazar bakery and i can say that i sooooooo love the chinese music pouring out from the speakers. heidz finally bought a lotus cream with 1 egg mooncake while i bought lao po pia (sweet heat cake... don't ask, i don't know what this means either ü). i asked the girl at the counter where i can buy a cd of chinese music and this chinese woman who's manning the cash register answered "galing yan sa china." oh ok. i really wanted to buy one ever since i was bombarded with chinese music at the malls in KL (which was about to celebrate the chinese new year at the time).

we were just in time for the next trip going to guadalupe (8.15pm). the station in escolta is well-lighted. and inside the boat? FREEZING. it's like we stepped into an industrial-size freezer where the meat is kept. the seats are also made of hard plastic so... it's very cold... ^^;;
the boat also reminds me of the supercat i rode going to ormoc, leyte from cebu as it looks exactly the same except for the seats. i would have loved to look out the window and see the sights, but as it was already night time there wasn't much to see except for places that were lighted--and there weren't many lighted places anyway.
the trip took longer than i expected because the boat was running slower than its maximum speed of 17 knots. the officer i spoke to said that it's due to the speed requirement when plying the river--to make way for the other barges as well as to prevent creating large waves that might cause the smaller boats to capsize.
out of the six stations from guadalupe to escolta, four are already operational: guadalupe, hulo, sta. ana and escolta. the other two--lambingan and pureza will open mid-2007. hopefully the ones extending up to the marikina river will open at the end of this year or early next year.
the trip from escolta to guadalupe took 55 minutes. it's quite longer than i expected, but then it was a good experience. there were only a few passengers (8 in all) so it wasn't like rush hour at all. it was actually like mrt and lrt2 when they first opened. i sincerely hope that this river scheme would click with the commuters.

heidz and i separated at mrt shaw and i met up with my family at shangri-la. where was my family eating dinner? mong kok express!

Sunday, March 04, 2007


antabayanan... abangan... watch out.