Friday, December 31, 2004

Counting My Blessings

2004 was quite a year for me!

January-- The very long Canada trip
February--Lunched at Sonya's with Mike -- our Vday date =)
April -- My bestfriend Sharon walked down the aisle with the man she loves
May -- Met Mike's parents for the first time
June -- Celebrated our first year anniversary!
August -- 4 cute Maltese pups!
September --Visited China (Shanghai) for the first time; reunion with Benchpipol!
October -- went to Guangdong for the Annual Canton Fair
November -- First Tagaytay trip with my family, ate at Antonio's
December -- went beyond sales expectation for our company

All in all, 2004 was a good year for me. Hope 2005 turns out even better. =)

December's Blessings

Things I was thankful for for the month of December
  • Getting home early from work
  • The mushy picture message from Mike
  • Being able to watch The Apprentice with minimal power interruptions
  • Receiving a call from Mike just because
  • My dad offering to cancel my bazaar agreement on my behalf
  • Going beyond our sales expectations
  • Attorney Nieto agreeing to cancel my bazaar space reservation even w/o intervention from dad!!
  • Raymond helping me fix my computer
  • Liza offering me free tix to Martin Nievera's concert!
  • Not having to go to Xmas party in Tarlac
  • Mike bringing over some office giveaways so that I won't have to pick them up
  • Audrey uninjured in a major car accident
  • The 2 SM attendants who helped me with my box
  • Finishing off my Xmas shopping... well, almost.
  • Finding gifts that are bagay for the recipients
  • My Ahya Peter
  • The long conversation I shared with Richmond about life and other stuff
  • My brother selling 50++ boxes of pizza last night
  • The featherbed Richmond gave me
  • Richmond braving the HELLISH Makati traffic for me
  • Mike's patience
  • Xmas dinner with my HS friends
  • The many fruit scented stuff I got from friends
  • The In Style mags and All About Me book I borrowed from Liza
  • The lakwatsa with Sharon
  • Light traffic due to holidays
  • Last minute reservations to Fat Michael's
  • Helpful tambays who give clear road directions
  • Another full moon gimmick with Val
  • Making up after LQ =)
  • A good New Year's Eve dinner with my family
  • 2004's blessings
  • Wednesday, December 29, 2004

    We Cook Slow, Live With It

    After a shopping spree at the WTC bazaar, Val and I decided to try out Fat Michael's. I have read so many good reviews about the place. Fortunately, Val had their contact number stored in her cellphone. She called them up to ask for directions. The guy who answered our call said that we should turn right at SLEX and just go straight until we see Makati View Apartelle. Well, we didn't follow his directions, and made up our own direction. So it took us around 30 minutes to locate the place.

    Fat Michael's is a very small and cozy place, with beads, shawls and Bohemian lanterns hanging from the ceiling. I am guessing that the place was a small 2 storey house converted into a quaint bistro. Below is a caricature of Fat Michael's, as shown on their menu's cover:

    We were seated near the kitchen, where we could smell all the wonderful smells of food being prepared. We ordered fries, spicy lamb kebabs and scampi pasta. The spicy lamb kebab was soooo good! I'm not fond of kebabs, as they always come out dry and unappetizing. But Fat Michael's version of kebabs (at least for the spicy lamb) was moist and flavorful. It went well with the saffron rice.

    The scampi pasta was okay, although I would have liked it better if it had more stewed tomatoes in it.

    But the grand finale for me was the dessert -- coffee chocolate cake. Four layers of chocolate cake sandwiched between layers of coffee mousse, topped with chocolate glaze and served with whipped cream on the side. I don't know if it's because I have been craving for chocolate lately, but I couldn't get enough of the chocolate glaze! I want to thank Val for letting me have most of the cake, which took me all of 30 minutes to finish. Was really savoring every bite. =)

    Val peeked in the kitchen and saw a list of blacklisted customers. Reasons include -- lying (maybe the guests lied about their reservations?), overstaying (we left immediately after paying the bill). We noticed that the pieces of furniture were intentionally mismatched, and most of the plates were chipped, which only added to the coziness and quaintness of the place.

    Nice place to hang out. Quite pricey @ P375 per head, but understandable, since the lamb kebabs is a pricey item. Will definitely go back IF I happen to be in Makati. But will not travel all the way from Manila or QC just to eat there. Also want to get to know the owner and find out who Fat Michael really is.

    You can read some comments about Fat Michael's here, andhere.

    Tuesday, December 28, 2004

    ... the end of an era

    It's really over. Booohoooohooo... Sex and the City is over! This month has been one crying-fest for me. I cried when FPJ died. I cried when KC de V. died. And now this -- SATC is over! No more HBO Tuesday nights to look forward to. My only "consolation" is that Carrie ended up with John, aka Mr. Big. I actually want Carrie to end up with Aidan, but he's happily married and has a cute kid, so Carrie being a kabit was probably not a good way to end the show.

    I prepared for the finale by watching SATC from Season 1 till sawa (was able to watch till Season 2's episode 8). Some of my favorite scenes include:

    1. Miranda and Steve meeting for the first time.
    2. Mr. Big showing up when Carrie thought he wouldn't.
    3. Miranda and Steve kissing in the rain.
    4. Smith waiting for Samantha to make sure she got home safe. (Awwww!)
    5. Charlotte trying out her wedding gown for her marriage to Harry.
    6. Aidan proposing to Carrie (Aidan in a suit, Carrie in a white dress).

    It will take forever for me to list down all my favorite scenes. But the ones I've listed are the more memorable ones.

    The thing is, SATC wasn't just a regular tv show for me. It was the lifestyle I (can only) dream of -- fabulous and independent single women with equally fabulous careers who date cute men, live in stylish homes, wear stylish clothes and go to "in" clubs and parties. But what I really liked about SATC was the kind of friendship they shared. I have always wanted a routine type of gimmick with my friends, where we have a special place for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner and we update each other about our lives. But traffic, significant others, work, post grad education and stress always seem to get in the way. =(

    Plus, because of SATC, I now want to go to New York! To visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art. To take a leisurely walk in Central Park. To eat in at least one popular restaurant and find out what the fuss is all about. But am too scared to get on a plane bound for New York. Val, can we just go to Canada and cross the border from there? =)

    Took this test to see which SATC character I am --
    You are Charlotte.
    Congratulations! You are Charlotte.

    Which Sex and the City Character Are You?

    Friday, December 24, 2004

    Miracle on Bulacan Street

    Only six more hours to go before Christmas! I didn't think I'd be this excited about Christmas. But when the air gets colder, when people become nicer, when the holiday hams etc. start showing up on the dinner table, it's really hard not to catch the holiday fever. And today, my parents are home early, ON A FRIDAY AFTERNOON. That has never happened before. Come to think of it, all five of us are at home, just lounging around, ON A FRIDAY AFTERNOON! Wow... miracles do happen!

    For our Noche Buena tonight, I originally wanted to prepare the following: chicken pastel, paella ala Majorcana, and a buco pandan salad. But I woke up late, and started late, and realized how ambitious my culinary goal for the day was. So all I ended up doing was the chicken pastel. Mike came over to pick up the chicken pastel (I made two, one for him, one for us). His contribution to our Noche Buena is a beef casserole. I really appreciate him coming over despite the traffic and his headache. Headache, he says, is because of me. Pinagod ko daw siya the whole week. Hehehe... Fine, fine -- I'm guilty as charged. Pinagod ko siya.. sa kakahatid sundo sa akin. We went to two Christmas dinners this week -- one with my HS friends, one with his friends. Fortunately, I didn't stuff myself for both dinners. We arrived late for both dinners kasi.

    Three people "contributed" to my collection of fruit scented stuff. Sharon gave me Body Shop's Mango Body Butter. (Big coincidence! Nope, she doesn't read my blog. She doesn't even know what a blog is.) Mike gave me a Bath and Body Works' Cucumber Melon lotion. William (Mike's friend who's visiting from the US) gave me a Bath and Body Works' Apple Scented handwash. So for the people who know me, do not be surprised if I smell like fruit salad when we're together.

    Wednesday, December 22, 2004

    Political Angst

    What's worse than a corrupt politician?

    It's a corrupt politician trying to pass himself off as a saint, that's what.

    I wanted to smash our beloved 10++ years old tv set after I watched Chavit Singson being interviewed on the local news. His ending statement went something like this -- If Mrs. Arroyo allows Erap to leave the country, I will withdraw my support to her government. I have no choice but to follow the will of the people. (This isn't verbatim, of course.)

    (Gasp!) Follow the will of the people?!?!? Protect my interests is more like it. Ehem, ehem... Mr. Singson, let me write down a few reasons why I find your statement so heart wrenching (because it is really wrenching my heart).

    First off, being the "star witness" to a jueteng expose does not mean you are innocent. Mr. Singson, you seem to forget that the very reason why you were so privy with Erap's jueteng activities was because you belonged to Erap's inner circle of jueteng friends.

    Second, from what I understand, a "star witness" is a witness the government protects for safety reasons.
      And boy, does the gov't really know how to protect you!!
    • You have a sprawling mansion in Ilocos Sur, and no one questions where you got the fund to build it.
    • You blatantly announced during the recent May elections that anyone who wishes to campaign in your area needs to go through you in order to assure that their votes (ballots) will be protected. Still, no one bothered to question your threatening words.
    • Don't even get me started on your hotel in Ilocos.

    And now, just because the government displeased you by allowing Erap to leave for HK, you threaten to stage an uprising? Expecting the government to kowtow to your every political whim is one thing. But announcing to the world that you are doing this for the people is pure crap.

    It's the little boy, threatening to throw a fit because mommy allowed kuya to play outside, all the while saying that he's doing this for mommy's good. Yuck.

    Sunday, December 19, 2004

    New Beginnings

    It's been one I-N-T-E-R-E-S-T-I-N-G week. I got a text from Liza last night, where she told me that she finally "answered" her very persistent suitor Lawrence. Hihihihihi! I called her up on her cellphone and asked.. no, demanded, to know the details. And I'm so honored to know that my picture message (sent to me by the very un-mushy Mike in one of his rare mushy moments) played a verrrry important role in the new couple's budding relationship. I'm so happy and giddy for the two of them. I have this smile on my face just thinking of their story.

    Meanwhile, things are currently in the "sawa and pagod" phase for another couple. They have been through so much together, and I sincerely hope that they will be able to pass this phase and just think of it as an addition to the things that they have gone through already.

    Kanina pa ako isip ng isip about today's date. I feel that December 19 should mean something to me, yet I cannot remember what it stands for. Tonight, I finally remembered. Ten years ago on this day, I was crying my heart out because my first boyfriend broke up with me... through a message sent on my pager. Wow... if I had known ten years ago that I had to go through that heartbreak in order to be where I am today, I would have gladly and happily accepted the experience. =)

    Saturday, December 18, 2004

    Ahya Peter

    Some people are born with that natural ability to get along with everybody, even without trying. My Ahya Peter is one of them.

    We had a "Monito Monita" exchange gift portion in our Xmas party yesterday. The twist was that we had to describe our "monito / monita" before we reveal who they are. Ahya Peter was described as,

    "Adviser ng office. Nakaka-inspire katrabaho. Pwede ko na nga siyang tawaging living legend."

    I really, really thought that the description was meant for me. Buti na lang hindi pa ako tumayo. I, on the other hand, got the following description,

    "Siya ang in charge sa bonus natin this year." =(

    I used to think that management was an either-or focus issue. EITHER I focus on getting the company to run smoothly OR getting people to like me. But working with Ahya Peter, who was the only one who received cheers from BOTH administration and delivery staff, has taught me otherwise. Yesterday, in our humble office Xmas party, I learnt that a little lambing and a little carino really goes a long, long way.

    Friday, December 17, 2004

    Losing My Pearly Whites

    I often dream about losing my teeth. In my dreams, I am casually going about my daily routine when I suddenly feel that all my molars have fallen off. And the first thing that I think of is, "Does this mean I have to wear dentures now?" I panic but don't really do anything about it. This has been my recurring teeth-dream for almost 10 years now.

    Today, I had another teeth dream. No molars involved this time -- just my two front teeth naman. In my dream, I saw a small brown spot on my left front tooth. So I ran my tongue over it and the small spot becomes a bigger hole, revealing 2 layers of teeth. I ran my tongue over the hole again, and it becomes even bigger. Until I discover that all my teeth have two layers. The first layer has a chestnut-y texture. Nothing's wrong with my teeth really, except that they now have peelable layers.

    Maybe my subconscious is telling me that I really want to be a dentist? I don't know.. but to the Chinese, dreaming of teeth is usually bad luck. Any dream interpreters out there?

    Thursday, December 16, 2004

    To bitch or not to bitch...


    Jeepney drivers. The kind who think that they can get away with crashing onto your car just because they are poor. Do not ask me why, I don't understand the analogy either.

    Really slow drivers. It's irritating to see each of the NLEX's four lanes occupied by four vehicles racing against each other, at the record breaking speed of 50 km/ hour.

    The abundance of Christmas posters from gov't officials. I don't need a Christmas greeting from Congressman so and so and family. Is that where our taxes go? No wonder my baranggay is in such a sorry state.

    Having to pass by C3 every day. Potholes, potholes and more potholes!! I wonder who facilitated the construction of these !#$#! roads anyway?

    Incompetent workers. We have a lot of them. And I know how to solve this problem. I just don't have the heart to do it at Christmas time.

    The really bad traffic! Traffic at the toll gates. Traffic outside our house. Traffic near the malls. Traffic along the highway. Grrrrr!

    Purchasers who order the wrong stocks from us and expect us to move heaven and earth just so they won't lose face with their bosses.

    Being addressed as a "Mr. Uy." Is my name not feminine sounding enough?

    Being waitlisted for the Chocolate Buffet! Aargh! Why should we give way to the Vienna Choir anyway?

    Tuesday, December 14, 2004


    ALL THE NICETIES THIS XMAS HAPPENS AT BIZU! Simbang gabi breakfast begins at 6a.m., and hear Xmas symphonies by The Swirl Acoustic Group for dinner (Dec. 16 - 24) at Greenbelt 2!


    Our maid Jean decided to play around with Pan-Pan's hair... and this is what happened. =)

    Random Ramblings

    Now I finally understand why FPJ had to lose in the elections. Noli de Castro was a sure winner as vice president then. If FPJ had won, and Noli won too, then Kabayan would be the new president now. So GMA had to win. My condolences to FPJ's family.


    I am getting sick of Regine Velasquez's new release -- Shine. It's played on radio, in malls, on tv and even in bazaars!! Once, it was even played simultaneously on 3 FM stations. Aaaargh! I used to like Regine's songs. But now, all she does is scream. I know, I know... she has to advertise her singing prowess... but can't she do that without screaming? Take Shine for instance -- it's supposed to be an inspiring song. But listening to her version, it's like a song she's using to vent out her frustrations in life.


    Audrey told me that there's a quaint restaurant in Malate called Barbara's. Good atmosphere, and couches for seats! The owner told her that they will be reopening the ship/restaurant operating in Manila Bay. I know there used to be one before, where you can hop aboard and have dinner while on a ship. I just don't remember who ran it. Anyways, this is something I want to try! Will convince my family to go para free. =)


    Did anyone hear about the robbery in Valenzuela today? I was on the NLEX when I saw all these policemen swarming around two delivery trucks near the Valenzuela exit. One of the trucks belonged to our competitor. People began running in all directions... in the middle of the highway. Odd thing was, most of them actually found this incident amusing, judging from the grins on their faces. They were grinning widely as they hid behind cement walls for protection, just in case a bullet accidentally hits them.


    I had my first stamp on my Starbucks card today! I checked out the planner again, but this time, it did not look as appealing as before. I need to complete 21 stamps by January 15 in order to redeem the planner. That's P110x 21 stamps = P2,310. Pretty expensive for an ordinary planner. Makes me wonder if it's really worth it, considering that I feel sick whenever I take coffee.


    Looking forward to the chocolate buffet this Saturday! It's pretty expensive at P500, and THIS will really ruin my diet. Hah.. as if! Pretty loaded this weekend -- office Xmas party on Friday, employee's daughter's wedding on Saturday lunch, chocolate buffet on Saturday evening, cousin's houseblessing party on Sunday lunch, will try to catch up with college barkada's lunch afterwards.

    Sunday, December 12, 2004

    A Series of Unfortunate Events

    No, this is not a book review. It is simply a description of what transpired in my Sunday afternoon. It all started when Richmond and I decided to go to Megamall today to buy giveaways for our customers and employees.

    1. Instead of the usual Ortigas route, we decided to pass by Edsa, where he missed the overpass going to Ortigas Center. We had to make a u-turn to Greenmeadows instead.

    2. He parked in Mega Bldg. B. Big mistake, because all the things we needed to do were in Bldg. A.

    3. I was already in the middle of paying for all our purchases when Richmond noticed that I forgot one customer in my gift list. So balik na naman to the display area.

    4. While Richmond made some last minute purchases, I decided to check out the DVD players in the 4th level of the mall. I accidentally brought the claim stubs (for our purchases) with me, kaya my brother couldn't claim our purchases. So I had to go down pa.

    5. After loading all purchases in the car, we went to the grocery to shop for canned goods giveaways. While I was paying for our groceries, my brother decided to get the car and pick me up from outside the building kasi mabigat ang dala namin. So off he went and walked to the other side of the mall to get the car, only to discover that he can't get out of the building because I had the parking ticket with me... and I was on the opposite end of the building.

    6. I asked the nearest SM male attendant if he can help me bring the box of canned goods (75 cans to be exact).

    me: "Manong, pwede po niyo akong tulungang dalhin itong karton?"
    attendant: "Opo, san po ba kayo naka-park?"
    me: "Sa bldg. A."
    attendant: "Naku, di po kami pwede don eh."

    Attendant passed me on to another attendant who was on his way inside the building. Now, this attendant said he will help me bring my 75 canned goods to the other side of the building, but can I wait for him while he informs his boss? "Sure!!" I replied, grateful that the attendant seemed to honestly want to help out a damsel in distress.

    So I waited. While waiting... I felt tingly all over. I silently thought to myself - "Wow... Christmas really has that effect on people no? Imagine, pumayag siya to bring my box from Mega B to Mega A? How nice of him! I will ask him his name and write a letter of praise to SM management. I will even write about him to that consumer section in PDI. Aba! I'll mention his name pa in my blog!!" So I waited... and waited.... and waited.... for 15 minutes. By then, the crowd had already thinned (around 10pm na kasi), and it was verry obvious that the attendant was not coming back anymore.

    Crap!! What to do? What to do? My brother will be so irked if I ask him to go back to Mega B just so I can give him the parking ticket. For a minute, I actually entertained the thought of just dragging the box to the other side of the building, and wait for a nice (and strong) stranger to volunteer to help me with it. Out of desperation, I tried once more to plead my damsel-in-distress case to a security guard.

    me: "Bosing, pwede bang patulong dito sa karton?"
    guard (smiling): "Opo mam san po ba kayo naka park?"
    me: "Sa kabilang building."
    guard (smile quickly leaving his face): "Ay, bawal po yan eh."
    me: "Ganon? " I tried, as much as possible, to look pitiful and helpless.

    Hahahaa... it worked.

    Guard waves over two attendants, and coincidentally, one of them was the one who packed the box eons ago.

    Attendant: "Mam ba't nandito pa kayo?" Eh kanina pa yan ah! San ba kayo nakapark?"

    I was already losing hope by this time. So in a helpless voice, I told them where I was parked.

    Well, what do you know? He called over his companion to help him with the box and carried them. No smile leaving his face, no questions, no complaints. All he did was ask me to lead the way.

    In the end, I was not able to get the names of the two attendants who did help me with the box. And I don't remember their faces anymore. They left immediately after loading the box in the car. But I am just thankful that there are people like them, who would, after approximately 8 hours of nonstop work, be so nice to carry my box of canned goods for me, with a smile on their faces and with no hesitations.

    Aaah... life is good. =)

    Saturday, December 11, 2004

    Answered Prayers

    I could sense that my dad was worried and nervous. We just got back from an emergency meeting with our lawyer, and things were definitely not looking good for us. Upon reaching the house, I prayed. I asked for a sign and prayed -- please, help us find whatever it is we need to find. If what we're doing is right, we will find the documents that we so badly need. If we do not find the documents tonight, then I'll take it as a sign from You that we must not proceed with our plans.

    Five minutes later, we found them. Not just the document. But documentsssss. My dad could not find them months ago. But they miraculously turned up exactly when we needed them most.

    Thank You.

    Thursday, December 09, 2004

    Great Expectations

    "Hey, u n mike free on fri nte?
    Hve xtra 2 tkets 4 martin concert
    at picc, 8pm. Cn u let me know
    tnte if u wana cme?=)"

    I received this text from Liza as I was driving. Am not a big fan of Martin, but it has been so long since I last saw a concert. And if the price is right....

    Me: "Hw much tix? N wer?" (Obviously hindi nagbabasa)
    Liza:"Gft ko sa inyo! :)...Free fr my bro. Hehe! Picc."

    It's FREE! That did it! She now has my full attention!

    Me: "Eeeeeh! Tlga? Tlga? L ask wait! Wat tym?"

    I dialled Mike's number. Ring....ring... ring.... he wasn't picking up the phone. It was around 9:30 pm then. Maybe he's having dinner? I'll try again. Still, no answer. So I called up Richmond on our Nextel radio and asked him to call Mike using my Sun cell which I left at home. No one was answering his Sun number either! Aaargh! I try calling him again through his Globe number. Ring... ring... ring....

    Mike: "Hello?"
    Me: "Hay salamat!!!"
    Mike: "Bakit?"
    Me: "Ba't di mo sinasagot cellphone mo?!?!"
    Mike: "Ako nagsundo sa mama ko eh. Iniwan ko cell sa bahay. O bakit?" (We're so lovey dovey no?)
    Me: "Tinatanong ni Liza........"
    Mike: NR
    Me: "Hello?!?!"
    Mike: "O! Nakikinig ako!"
    Me: "Tinatanong ni Liza kung gusto daw natin manood ng concert ni Martin. Free!! Free!"
    Mike: "Saan? Kailan?"
    Me: "PICC, 8pm, this Friday."
    Mike: "So tingin mo aabot tayo doon on time?" (By this time, warning bells were already going off in my head. Hmmm.. this conversation sounds soooo familiar.)
    Mike: "Ay, this Friday?! Hindi ako pwede eh. Ako ulit magsusundo."
    Me: "Ah.. okay."
    Mike: "Okay lang?"
    Me: "Okay. Babay."
    Mike: "Babay."

    Haaay... that's the 2nd concert Mike turned down yesterday. The first one was the concert with the Tux, the Company and another group next Friday in Greenbelt 3. Reason he turned it down --"Tingin mo aabot tayo dun on time?" He has been turning down FREE concerts left and right. Maybe, another reason why he's turning down all these free concerts is because he's secretly planning to surprise me with something! Haha! Now that I've written it here in my blog, people will be following up on the surprise you're planning. So you better come up with something. Don't worry... I'll pretend to act surprised. =)

    borrowed this from Sapphire's! blog:

    10 Years Ago, I...
    1. Thought I had met the man (well, boy) I was to spend the rest of my life with.
    2. Had my first heart break caused by the boy in #1.
    3. Thought I would never recover from the pain.

    5 Years Ago, I...
    1. Just graduated from college
    2. Lost my angkong.
    3. Was manufacturing mousepads in my room while everybody was having their Christmas get togethers.

    3 Years Ago, I...
    1. Enrolled myself in PSID and CACs
    2. Met my 2nd bf.
    3. Had my first ever surprise bday party at Cafe Breton, T. Morato! Courtesy of Val!

    A Year Ago, I...
    1. Was, by this time, preparing for a long trip to Canada.
    2. Was (and still am) head over heels in love with Mike.
    3. Hired our first ever sales team for our animal health division.

    This Year, I...
    1. Finally ate at Sonya's Garden and Antonio's
    2. Met Mike's parents for the first time.
    3. Watched as my bestfriend walked down the aisle with the man she loves.

    Yesterday, I...
    1. Redesigned my blog!
    2. Got turned down by Mike 2x for free concerts.
    3. Was able to look for a way to get stocks to arrive earlier.

    Today, I...
    1. Reviewed a very one-sided contract (not in our favor)
    2. Fed the mongrel in our office compound
    3. Did not get irritated with anybody.

    Tomorrow I will...
    1. Meet with another foreign supplier.
    2. Try not to be so irritable
    3. Go home early. Yay!

    Wednesday, December 08, 2004

    Pork barrel

    Call me ignorant, but I did not know what exactly the pork barrel was until this year. Sure, I had an idea of what it was, but I never bothered to actually read the newspaper definitions. It wasn't until GMA started calling on the public to practice measures of austerity that I finally understood what the pork barrel was exactly. And my first reaction upon reading the definition was,

    "What? The government has an allocation for local projects?"

    Which projects? Where? When? I have lived in the Philippines all my life and I have yet to see one project. Okay... that is an exaggeration. I see a lot of waiting sheds. And open manholes on the streets. Murals on the walls. Oh, and let us not forget -- the numerous street repairs that coincidentally take place near election time. But I have always assumed that those were from the politician's own pockets, in an effort to advertise himself. Fine, fine... let's consider them as projects na rin. So, that's it? Those are the billion peso projects that the pork barrel was budgeted for? Amazing.

    The reason I am so irked with this issue is because of an Inquirer article I read this morning. Polls show that Pinoys are against the pork barrel. To my understanding, polls are surveys conducted by the people, for the people. Simply put, it is the people who are against the pork barrel. But one insistent (read: moronic) congressman declares that the pork barrel is nothing to be ashamed of. He insists that his constituents are actually in favor of pork. Maybe his constituents coincidentally comprised the 16% polled who were in favor of pork. Or maybe his constituents thought they were being asked to choose between beef or pork.

    Why is the insistent (read: moronic) congressman being so defensive? Nobody is saying that the pork barrel is something to be ashamed of. Heck, I am in favor of the pork barrel -- as long as I see the projects happening. And when I say projects, I do not mean another waiting shed. Or colorful but useless street lamps. Or another park beside the very scenic Pasig River. Or putting up banners with your names plastered all over them. No. By projects, I mean these:

    a. Road repairs with a purpose. Except for the new NLEX, I cannot think of any street in Luzon that does not have potholes built in it.
    b. School supplies for public school students -- and do not put your face and name on them.
    c. Year round feeding programs for the poor.
    d. Throw in some contraceptives too.
    e. Round the clock barangay tanods and policemen patrolling the streets at night.
    f. Ergonomic and durable housing for the poor.
    g. Tree planting and landscaping on the islands

    In another article, I read that some group of politicians donated a portion of their pork barrel to the Quezon victims. Doesn't the pork barrel come from the people? Can you actually donate something that is not yours? Somebody please answer me.

    Monday, December 06, 2004

    December Goals

    This December, I will:
    .....clean up my room
    .....donate to the Quezon flood victims
    .....renew my financial support to World Vision
    .....learn how to bake ensaymadas
    .....fulfill my 2 years old promise to Jerson by baking a quiche for him
    .....get our Maltese pups registered
    .....find a way to remember everything people tell me to do
    .....learn the fine art of saying "no"
    .....organize a successful office party
    .....lose the extra pounds
    .....not get upset over every little unfortunate incident
    .....renew my dad's passport my Citibank bill on time
    .....make an ice cream cake with Val gifts
    .....and stay within my budget
    .....organize my newspaper clippings
    .....feed the mongrel loitering around in our warehouse (well, at least during the times I'm in the office)
    .....lessen my Smart cellphone use
    .....give out pizza to streetkids (and help my brother finish up his stocks na rin)
    .....cut my Fitness First membership my own planner =)

    Hmm... will add more as I go along.

    Weekend Ramblings

    Busy... that's what the last week had been for me. No time to blog, no time to shop, no time to read or cook. But amazingly enough, I always had time to eat. It was food galore last week -- which would explain the tighter than usual jeans. Aaargh! And all the food consumed last week were not even Christmas related. By the time Christmas arrives, I will probably need a whole new wardrobe!!
    Went out with Liza last Friday night. We ate at Di Mark's in Greenbelt where I had the carbonara and she had Minestrone soup. The carbonara was downright YUCKY I don't even want to talk about it. Liza's Minestrone soup was too salty. Tsk tsk... I have heard good things about Di Marks, which was why I was not expecting their food to be so ugh. Maybe their pizzas are good. But heck, I ain't going back there.

    Dinner was supposed to be a Christmas reunion for the four of us -- Sharon, Liza, Mary Grace and moi. But of course, only us singletons made it. Sharon couldn't make it because of a derma appointment. Mary Grace couldn't make it because... er.. I forgot. Basta another appointment. Oh well. Married life really changes one's lifestyle, I guess.

    Saw Bridget Jones after dinner. It has been years since I last read the book, so I really can't remember the storyline anymore. But I do not remember any Thailand assignments for Bridget. (Rory, Val, meron ba?) But I liked the movie. It was a welcome change after a harrowing seminar the night before. I laughed so hard especially in the jail scene, with the women singing their own version of "Like A Virgin." The actress who played Rebecca was so pretty. Her name is Jacinda Barrett, and I cannot imagine her as a lesbian.
    Saturday morning, we had brunch with our Dutch supplier at the Heritage Hotel. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT, ever make the mistake of having your meal there. Because:
    -- Pancakes served with berries and warm maple syrup = pancakes served with Comstock's blueberry pie filling and watermelon chunks and Lady's Choice syrup. And no butter. You have to ask for it. Berries = watermelons? If they do not have fresh berries all year round, then they should have written preserved fruits on their menu instead!

    -- Orange juice= a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice costs a freakin' P255.00!! That's per glass! Okay, okay! I know hotels overcharge for their beverages. P150 per glass is still acceptable. But P255?!?!

    -- Service was bad. We were the only ones seated in the area, and there were two attendants nearby. But we felt invisible as we waved our hands to ask for a glass of water.

    -- Buffet was bad. 'Nuff said.
    We initially planned to celebrate my mom's birthday at the Westin Plaza's longest buffet (yum!), but since I wanted to pay for the dinner, I asked Audrey to suggest something more within my budget. She came up with zhongnanhai, a new Chinese restaurant operated by Max Brenner. According to Auds, the resto is famous for their tea, imported all the way from China.

    Good thing Audrey made reservations, because when we arrived, the restaurant was already full. We were lead to the second floor, where the first thing I noticed were the low ceilings. Now, most of the Chinese restos I have been to (except Mann Hann) have that typical Chinese look -- bright lights and red tablecloth. But zhongnanhai deviated from the traditional by going for dark colors and dim lights. For that night, we ordered:

    Shao Long Pao -- arrived towards the end of dinner, was given free because of the long wait and because they wanted us to taste the house specialty. It was okay, nothing extraordinary.
    Pork with jellyfish --
    Hot and Sour soup --
    Wintermelon soup --
    Yangchow fried rice -- SARAP!!
    Fried rice with diced chicken and salted fish -- SARAP!!
    Deep fried spare ribs -- I liked this the most. The ribs were tender and served with a lot of fried garlic, which made the whole dish even better.
    Pan fried beef tenderloin -- Another good dish!
    Sweet and sour fish fillet -- The fish is so tender that it almost melts in your mouth.. well, almost.
    Steamed garoupa and minced beans -- My mom considers herself an expert on tao so hi, and she liked this dish.
    Braised prawns with pumpkin sauce and steamed buns -- A new food concept for me, so there is no basis for comparison. But I liked it just the same.
    Braised black mushrooms with vegetables --

    Prices per dish ranged from P250 - P350. Servings are small, so it's kinda expensive when you really think about it. And the restaurant was obviously new, what with the delayed orders and all. But the waiters more than made up for the delay by being so nice to us. Even going to the extent of giving us free shao long paos. I will definitely go back to zhongnanhai. =)
    Sunday morning was spent combing the streets of Divisoria with Mike to look for stuff I can sell in Filinvest's bazaar. I sooooo want to back out of this, so if there's anyone interested, please leave a comment in my blog.

    I love going to Divisoria to shop. After the Divisoria shopping experience, I feel that all the stuff they're selling in the malls are overpriced. Dollhouses for P150! Cute watches for P100!! I bought 10 sheets of pretty matte gold wrapping paper for Liza -- all for P32!! Mura no?

    Anyway, after the Divisoria experience, which left us feeling yucky and dirty, we headed straight to Glorietta to watch National Treasure. I have read good reviews about the movie and I was not disappointed. Have some questions though:
    1. Why did Ian Howe not take special precautions when they were trying to break into the church towards the last part of the movie?

    2. How did they solve the clue where they had to refer to Silence's letters to the editor? Diba Benjamin's father donated the letters already?

    3. Why did Dr. Chase cut a deal with Ian Howe? Yes, helping a fugitive escape is a federal offense, but why Ian? What did he offer Dr. Chase and Riley in exchange? Safety for Gates? Sorry, I was not paying attention during this part of the movie. And obviously, Mike was not paying any attention too because he couldn't answer me. =)

    Overall, the movie was entertaining. Kept my eyes glued to the screen for all 131 minutes.

    Oh! Oh! Star sighting! Saw Marc Nelson in Glorietta yesterday. Hihihihihihi!

    Tuesday, November 30, 2004

    New Year's Resolution

    I have stopped making New Year's resolutions eons ago, because:
    1. I believe one does not have to wait until the end of the year to improve one's self (Hah! This is so obviously a palusot!)
    2. I do not fulfill any of my resolutions anyway.

    But this year, I will be reviving the tradition again after, get this.... three people told me that I'm mataray! THREE people...within ONE week! Hwaaat?!?! How can that be? I'm quiet...yes. I'm an introvert... yes. I'm impatient...yes! But mataray?!?! (Stop nodding your head in agreement Mike!) I have never thought of myself as mataray!

    Is mataray the opposite of mabait?

    "No," said my brother a.k.a. wise guru. "The opposite of mabait is masama. Your tarayness is not the loudmouthed type of taray. It's a silent type of taray, which is even more irritating." Thank God for brothers who tell you the truth no?

    Eniweys, for the year 2005, I hereby resolve to:
    1. Limit the taray only to people who deserve it.
    This means, I will not be mataray to my very very loving parents, my thoughtful brothers, my dear but busy friends and my very patient boyfriend. But I will intensify the taray to low life creatures of my world which include (in order of their lowliness) -- liars, thieves and all paternal relatives.

    2. Stop procrastinating!!
    Procrastinating = working under too much pressure = setting myself up for a heart attack.

    3. Work out more.
    ELJ Building, which houses Fitness First ABS CBN branch, has the gall to charge P30 for the first three hours of parking! That means, if I go to the gym religiously for a month, I will be charged P900 for parking alone. Add that to my P1800 monthly gym fee, and that's a freaking P2700 a month!! Or a whopping P32,400 a year! And no! I'm not willing to spend that much to keep my body fit!

    Hmm... I cannot think of anything else as of this moment. Can anyone suggest other areas that need to be improved? Or baka wala na? Hehe... Maybe I need a resolution to learn the art of humility? =) Oh well, will add more resolutions as I go along.

    Sunday, November 28, 2004

    My Dad is an Only Child

    How I wish this was true.

    Then I wouldn't have had to deal with my uncle a while ago. For some reason, my dad decided to punish me today by forcing me to spend (and waste) 15 minutes of my time to accompany my uncle. I had to listen to him as he went on and on and on about his latest "successes" in his non-existent business. "Shut up! Shut up! I do not care about the P121.50 discount you're getting on your cameras. Or how many thousands of batteries you sold yesterday. I just want you to sign whatever it is you need to sign so that we can have our freedom from your worthless lineage!! We shelled out millions to save your crappy house from the bank! Why can't you do this one thing for us?!?!" But my dad taught me well enough to not make a scene in a public place, so I just stared at the floor and wished it would open up and swallow him alive instead. That obviously did not happen.

    I cannot, for the life of me, understand why my dad ended up with crappy, money-hungry siblings. Like the uncle who asks us to pay for his crappy registration costs for his crappy vehicle, conveniently forgetting that he now has millions in his bank account. Or that bitch in Quiapo who does not understand the difference between a corporation and a single propietorship. Or the bigger bitch in QC who sang her tales of woe to my dad to ask for money to put up a factory together. Like her sister, she doesn't understand the difference between a corporation and a single proprietorship either. Nor can her simple mind grasp the difference between lending and donating. Ah sus.. hindi naman pala money-hungriness ang problema eh. Tanga lang talaga ang mga tao pagdating sa pera. Wow... everything's clearer now.

    Saturday, November 27, 2004

    chanchan sleeping on my side of the bed.


    a picture of yosemite park that mike took during his recent US trip... i have to rave about it daw.... so here. but it's nice no?

    Friday, November 26, 2004

    things i'm loving right now

    There's PANPAN, named for the infection on her head when she was younger which made her look panot.
    Then there's SUSHI, Mike's suggestion para partner daw kay MAKI the mom.
    CHICKBOY, because he's the only guy in a group of 4.
    And my favorite -- CHANCHAN!! She had an infection near her abdomen area when she was younger kaya tiyan-tiyan evolved to chanchan. =) She sleeps with me most nights and I think I've toilet trained her well coz she has never peed on my bed. (Knock on wood)

    I have been addicted to cream sauces for the past 3 months now. And the first pasta dish that comes to mind is Italianni's Carbonara. This is sooooo good. Ewan if it's because of my cravings. Price is good, and the portions are big. I don't think I have ever finished one order by myself, no matter how hungry I am.

    3. BLOGGING!!

      I have to:
    • finalize details for product seminar happening on December 2
    • submit new names of products before tomorrow
    • complete our 2005 sales, marketing and promotion plans within the week
    • think of giveaways for the 33 BAI people which I overlooked

    ..... and here I am, blogging the night away. Need I say more?

    I love this show! I get a lot of tips on how (not) to run a project. For the episodes that I've seen, the projects are usually centered around creating a buzz -- which is what we need to do with our company next year!!

    5. PINK
    I am now in my pink stage. Most of the clothes I buy, on the rare times that I go shopping, are colored pink. When I was in my preteens, I was obsessed with navy blue. Everything had to be navy blue. In my teens, it was black. All my stuff were black. After graduation, it was white. And now, in my mid-20s, pink. I wonder what color is next?

    For a while, I used the I-am-too-mentally-stressed-out excuse to watch brainless movies. But I have been using that excuse for almost 1.5 years now, and I am still in my brainless fun phase! Oh no! Should I be worried? What the heck. I thoroughly enjoyed 13 Going on 30 and New York Minute. Next on my list is Mean Girls.

    I am not sure why I like this radio show so much. Maybe it's because I think listening to them will make me wiser in my dealings with people. Narinig ko na ata lahat ng excuses and hullabaloos from politicians they interviewed on air. And you should hear them when they're trying to get out of giving an answer that will put them in a bad light. "Aaaaaah... Korina... aaaaaahm... Ted..... kasi... aaaaaah.... ganito yan no..... aaaaaah......" and then the line goes dead. While I am typing this, the jingle for Bacchus energy drink is playing in my head.
    Mag-Bacchus ka araw mo'y balik sigla. Mag-Bacchus ka, araw mo'y balik sigla!

    THE PeRiwInKle RooM

    my room

    Thursday, November 25, 2004

    Lunch at Causeway

    I am typing this with MYMP's "A Little Bit" playing in the background. I heard them sing live in Powerbooks Megamall 2 weeks ago, and I have been addicted to this song ever since.

    Anyways, my 2nd ex's Friendster profile now reads that he is "in a relationship." Reading it was a trip down memory lane. Our (short) history together came flashing back -- from the first time we saw each other to how he broke my heart twice in 7 months. And I am once again reminded of the many reasons why we're better off as friends. I say "once again reminded" because Liza and I were just discussing the same topic a few days ago.

    And I was reminded for the 3rd time while having lunch with Mike at Causeway Libis this afternoon. I don't think I have laughed that hard with (at) anyone for the longest time. =)

    ......"artistic" kasi siya eh.....
    ......"maganda sister mo nung araw na yon".......
    ......"hindi na kita dadalhin sa basement"......
    ......"eh diba ikaw, artistic ka rin? ay? ay? hindi ba?!?!"......

    Life is good. =)

    Thursday, November 18, 2004

    Dog-eat-dog world

    One thing I'm learning (the hard way) right now is this - it's a dog-eat dog world out there. As I was telling my dad a while ago, there is no point being honest and moral anymore. In my two years of working for our company, I have seen for myself how people can be conniving and deceptive. Mabait pag kausap, pag nakatalikod ka, may iba nang binabalak. In the end, it is us who always lose. We end up losing money; they end up with the resources and the sympathy of the people. Which is what I don't get. How come there are people, who, after stealing from your company, have the gall to tell the world that they were mistreated? Ang kapal. It has never been my style to spread rumors about other people, especially the low-life types. Karma karma lang yan eh -- that's what I used to believe in. But heck, the people who stole from us are having the time of their lives. Habang we're here picking up the crap they left us. And really, I'm getting tired of this.....

    Monday, November 15, 2004


    My parents were so excited when I told them I wanted to make and sell bibingka. They even asked someone to comb the streets of Divisoria to look for the clay stove and clay pot used to cook bibingka. So, I bought cookbooks with bibingka royale recipes and set out to work. It looked easy enough when I observed the person manning the Ferino's outlet in Gilmore. So, it should be a piece of cake for me, right?


    The very first bibingka that came out was flat, and looked more like flattened hotcake. That time, it was my dad who was doing the cooking, and I was prepping (and watching The Apprentice). After 4 flattened bibingkas, he finally gave up and left me and Emmy to do the work. I showed the bibingka to my mom, who laughed and said we should call it bubungka instead. Harrrr... very funny. Harumph! When I build my bibingka empire, I will tell that story to Entrepreneur magazine -- how my mom made fun of my initial efforts at making bibingka.

    So, after adjusting the flour, we came out with an improved version. Although the bibingka became fluffier, it still bore no resemblance to the ones being sold at Ferino's. I compared the recipe I used with the other recipes which I haven't tried yet, and I discovered that the problem was with the amount of baking powder I used. Oh well, will try other versions soon.

    In the meantime, I am stuck with 8 bibingkas, 3 of which I had to practically force people to eat , 1 I offered as a peace offering to my brother (harhar... malamang after eating it, magkagalit na naman kami), and the other one I had to eat by myself. There are still 3 cakes left. Any takers? =)

    my one-hour getaway

    Finally! I was able to go to the Getaway Spa this afternoon. Just one hour of pure bliss and relaxation. I chose the Swedish massage -- a traditional full body massage using our selected G-Spa oil applying long strokes and kneading techniques. This process is ideal to soothe and relax tired musclees. It is a popular therapy choice among those visitng the spa to take the edge off a long workday. I was curious about their body treatments too, as I have read good reviews on But when they told me that I would have to take my top off, I backed out. Di ko pa kaya. =)

    Anyways, I liked the massage. My masseuse, Cathy, made sure that the pressure was right. She even allowed me to overstay in the room since only a few clients had made their reservation that day. I kinda felt sorry that the massage was over so soon. I wish I had chosen both a body treatment and a massage. But Cathy told me that body treatments have to be done before the massage.

    The Getaway Spa is celebrating their anniversary this month, so they are giving a 20% discount on all their massages until the end of the month.

    Sunday, November 14, 2004

    thinking beyond the box

    eeeek! mike's sister is getting engaged this coming sunday, and i have nothing to wear. all my clothes are either too casual, to frumpy, too happy or too blah. which is why i bought a stretch white blouse from MEMO in glorietta yesterday. it was okay when i tried it on in their fitting room. but horrific when i tried it on again in my room's harsh fluorescent lamps. it showed my curves... in the wrong places. will see what i can do about that.

    we wanted to see the xmas bazaar in ortigas home depot. but it was empty when we arrived. there were a handful of booths and a lot of unoccupied stalls. sayang. either it was still to early, or the bazaar was not advertised well. so we ended up visiting the newly opened ortigas home depot. i think this is different from the old mc home depot along meralco ave. a lot of good brands there. am currently lamp shopping for our newly renovated dining room and saw a nice lamp at LUXEN lighting. good price too.

    lunch was at craving's, where i had their pork stuffed with prunes in apple sauce. mike had callos. i don't really eat callos, so am not sure how that tasted. but my pork with prune stuffing was tender and flavorful. didn't care much for the sauce though -- it didn't taste "appley" enough. it tasted like regular gravy. the salad bar offered the usual stuff -- mushroom, ham, cheese, pasta salad, raisins etc. etc. the staff didn't do anything about the flies flying above the food until we shooed the flies away ourselves.

    also visited the women's world bazaar at world trade center. saw a lot of good stuff too, but ended up not buying anything. one of the stalls there was selling back issues of myhome magazine. i browsed through the mag and saw pictures of a big palace-like house fit for royalty. and guess who the owner is? it's none other than ricky reyes. nakakabilib. considering that he started out as a hairdresser lang. according to the article, he armed himself with pages and pages of pictures from ARCHITECTURAL DIGEST and designed the house himself. mother ricky reminds me of oprah. both struggled to make a name for themselves despite lack of societal acceptance (oprah being black and ricky being gay). and now that they've made it to the top, both of them are sharing the wealth by giving back to the public.

    dinner was at cabalen. their banner says that they offer 50 dishes for their buffet. but i counted and wala pang 50 yon no. they must have counted the ice and syrup for their halo-halo too. =) but their kare-kare was sooooooo good! next time i eat at cabalen's, will go directly to the kare-kare na.

    btw, can someone tell me if there's anything gramatically wrong with my title?

    Monday, November 08, 2004

    e x h a u s t e d

    I do not think I have ever been this exhausted my entire life. Is this what adult life really is like? When I wake up every morning, I automatically make a check list of things to do for the day. But the weird thing is, no matter how tired I am, no matter how many times I complain loudly to the people around me, deep inside, I really like what I do, even though I have little interest in the industry we belong to. Does that make sense? Sabagay... an accountant can love her job even if she belongs to an industry she doesn't like. I guess it's the rush I get.


    I made a leche flan cake last Friday. I have been getting good reviews about it so far. Made a booboo though. I wasn't able to fold in the butter properly. Kaya all the melted butter stayed on the bottom of the pan, much to my dismay. Oh well, as Jean said, "practice lang naman ito." =) Credit goes to her for the creamy leche flan she made. But for those who have tasted it.. comments naman dyan!


    Mike and I went to Market! Market! last Saturday. Was surprised about the ambiance. Kasi naman, in their print ads, Market! 2x looks like a high-end tiangge and mall for Class A and upper B people. But there were a lot of "pang-masa"stores, plus some high end stores as well. Which led us to conclude that maybe the developers of Market!2x originally wanted it to be a Class A tiangge, but ended up attracting the middle and masa crowd. We had lunch at Pancake House where we had tacos and value meals. Is it just me? Or did the taco at Pancake House tasted different? Parang it lacked something. We went to Karl Edwards afterwards, where I bought a beautiful bracelet for my mom and a crappily made Nike shirt. I felt so ripped off with the Nike purchase! Paano ba naman, ang pangit talaga ng pagkatahi. But I bought it to get new ideas for fabric we can make. Then dinner was at Suzhou Dimsum along Retiro. Their siao-long-pao is sooo good!! We had the steamed beef with a lot of garlic which was really good. And the seafood fried rice which was good din. Come to think of it.. everything we ate at Suzhou Dimsum was good! Will bring my parents next time.

    Friday, November 05, 2004

    Mike called me around 10:30 pm tonight. It was only then that I realized that that was our first communication for today. I have been so busy in the office, what with the customer compilations and dealer agreements that I am rushing to finish. However, I seem to be getting nowhere with all my tasks. Parang the more I try to do things, the more I end up not accomplishing anything at all. And work doesn't stop at the office. When I get home, the first thing I do is check office-related emails. And since most of our suppliers are in Europe, communication doesn't stop until 12 midnight (5pm at their end).

    Aaargh... somebody please take me to the spa!! Or a vacation for that matter!!

    Speaking of spas...I recently noticed how addicted I am to shower stuffs that smell like fruits. Actually, except for a Cream Silk conditioner and a floral scented body wash, ALL my shower stuff are fruit scented. I have 2 strawberry scented shower gels, a pear scented shampoo, kiwi, grapefruit, orange, citron. Hmm... come to think of it, I also have vanilla, almond, walnut, honey and cola. I always go for the food scents rather than the floral scents. I just didn't realize until this morning how obsessed I am with creams and lotions that smell like fruits, nuts and honey. Wala pa ako chocolate scents (HINT HINT). But please, no durian scents!

    Thursday, November 04, 2004


    How did this happen? How did Dubya win the elections? I still cannot believe it. I have NEVER liked Dubya or his dad for that matter. And after watching Fahrenheit 9/11, I dislike them even more. The thing is, I thought a lot of Americans would naturally turn to Kerry, after the 9/11 fiasco. I guess I was wrong. There was a scene in Fahrenheit, where an American woman claimed that the pictures of injured Iraqis in the media were all staged. Could this be the reason why America still went for Bush? I cannot, for the life of me, understand how they could have overlooked this fact -- that after killing approximately 100,000++ Iraqis, it was found out that there were no hidden weapons of mass destruction.

    Ironically, the man who promised to save the world from mass destruction is actually the same man causing it. Just take a look at the oil prices! And his .. er.. "frenemy" -- Mr. Osama Bin Laden, has sworn to vindicate the deaths of thousands of Iraqis by threatening the U.S. with an attack similar to 9/11.

    Wow.. it's gonna be one bu-shit Christmas this year...

    Wednesday, November 03, 2004

    Dinner with ELF

    ELF = ever lovable friend

    That was the code we used back in college. Cheesy, I know. But I don't care.

    Had dinner with Val a while ago at this small Japanese resto in one of the side streets of T. Morato. Food was great. Prices were reasonable. Had the unexciting katsudon, as I was not in the mood for anything new. Val had the fish-roe something.

    It has been almost a month since we last saw each other, and we had a lot of catching up to do. Her MBA, my err... "future plans," her friends, my friends, pics of pretty fondant cakes she made, my latest money making scheme.... Somewhere in the middle of our dinner, we both agreed to take a trip to New York... as a sort of last-minute hurrah. If things do not go our way, Plan B is a trip to Japan. Hopefully, we'll be able to go through with our grand plans.