Shy was at Baguio Village Inn

Shy was at Baguio Village Inn
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Thursday, May 31, 2012

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Part 1:Only in the Philippines

There are things that some expats or tourists couldn't understand about us Filipinos.  Even us, we don't know exactly where some mannerisms started.  Just like our endemic species, there are also some mannerisms that are, as we fondly call it, found 'only in the Philippines'.

1. Pointing with our Lips 


Source of Picture
Publisher: Shy - Thursday, May 31, 2012

Sunday, May 27, 2012

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Taboan Market, Cebu: Bulad Kayo Diyan!

Mr. Jeepney driver taking us to Taboan

Buying Bulad in Tabo-an Market

It was our last day in Cebu and we were to buy bulad or dried salted fish.  Now for those who don't know what that is, it's basically any seafood particularly fish that has been sun dried and salted.  This will last for months on end since it is preserved by salt, which is known to be the oldest known preservative.  So how you cook it is you just have to fry it- it's that simple.  For most Filipinos, we like to dip it in vinegar to tone down its saltiness and to give it a nice good kick.  I've heard that we're not allowed to bring this abroad since neighbors would complain of its pungent smell, which we Filipinos would gush about, and then, salivate. 


Going There


Going to Tabo-an Market was a bit confusing for a tourist like me.  But it won't really be that difficult just as long as you follow directions carefully.  Locals here are really friendly and are usually willing to extend help.  When me and my family went there it was raining profusely so it made it harder to go around town.   Now sometimes people would tell you different directions.  So you need to be doubly sure before heading on. Talk about getting lost while raining.  It was terrible.  But finally we found our way. We still ended up getting wet despite bringing two umbrellas with us.

If you want directions on how to navigate your way to the market, check Cille's blog for the specifics.

Inside the Market

Once you reach the market, you would see a varied array of bulad.  Now this what made Cebu famous for it.  You could actually see bulad anywhere in the Philippines but it would be limited to 3-4 types.  But here in Cebu, particularly in Tabo-an Market, a filipino like me would be surprise to know that there are actually other types of bulad which I haven't really seen or tried.



There are a lot of stores practically selling the same thing.  So we had to choose one and pick our bulad.  People usually buy from stores outside the market because not only it's accessible, it's safer too.  I've come to know that since while in search for a good store, we attempted to go deeper inside the market, but the tricycle drivers nearby warned us of thieves inside.  So we opted to buy in one of the stores outside. From that store we bought 3 types of bulad.  Those that we already tried and had grown fond of.  We got the sweet ones. Now these types are particularly hard to cook since they cook pretty fast, so if you try to cook it you need to keep your eyes on the frying pan at all times, if you don't want to eat something black, bitter and crispy for breakfast. Oh yes, bulad is usually serve in breakfast, more like scrambled eggs in the West. 


How much is it?

As far as I can remember they sell it by the kilo.  You usually end up buying 1/4 kilo per kind which was about P140 to P170, depending on the type of bulad.  Usually these are just packed using newspaper sheets, sealing it in between folds.  But since the demand has gone beyond Cebu.  Sellers now pack it by putting it inside transparent plastic sheets, vacuum out the air and seal it, ready for handcarry in airports/planes.


Taking Pictures?

I was tempted to take a good shot of this boy.  But I'm afraid that the parents were just close by and would not want anybody to take a picture of him. This one I took was just a stolen shot.  Not bad ey?

While I was taking pictures, I was really paranoid about the thieves lurking around us.  I knew that we were in the safer portion since thieves are way inside the market.  But I couldn't help but get suspicious of almost everyone.  I would take a picture immediately, and then put my camera inside my bag and zip it close, hugging my bag close to me.  Now this is one reason why I couldn't really explore much by myself.  I'm paranoid like that.


After finally buying our bulad we were just eager to get out of the market and go to the mall.  But before that, we needed to get our pictures taken.  Of course. :)

Smelly Situation

I've read in a blog that you need to change your clothes after coming out from the market. I actually I don't think that's necessary.  The only time you should change clothes is when you actually cooked the bulad and you're just nearby the vicinity during the cooking process.  The scent will stick to you like a leach!  But if you just bought some and took off, no need. That's what we did anyways.  We just put alcohol and sprayed a zit of cologne and viola! We were fresh again.

Scene outside the Market.
Good thing by the time we got out of the market, the rain had subsided.  We then got our jeepney going to the mall for lunch.

What is quite remarkable about Cebu is the presence of old residues of the first city of the Philippines.  The really ancient buildings, the tricycles and calesas.  And then next thing you see are skyscrapers, expensive cars.  It's an amazing how 2 worlds intertwine.  Yes you could witness that it Cebu.




Check our Cebu/Bohol Family Trip here:
3D/2N in Cebu and Bohol - Itinerary, and Expenses

Bohol

Cebu

Publisher: Shy - Sunday, May 27, 2012

Thursday, May 24, 2012

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2011: Year of Firsts!

2011 Bonanza!
I started having interest on traveling last year, 2011.  I've always seen people going anywhere but I haven't really envied them, well I probably had but not to the point where it really makes me want to book my own tickets right here, right now.  But what I know is that I've always wanted to go around the world, carrying with me my laptop so I could still work on the road.  I'm still trying to work on it now.  There are just a lot of expenses that I need to pay.  Once I have some budget to spare, I'll definitely purchase a pocket wifi. 

Publisher: Shy - Thursday, May 24, 2012

Monday, May 21, 2012

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Partying with the Street Roda at Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur


video

While enjoying the scene of big buildings, people from different races, and city lights, we heard some crazy beats and people practically singing chants, something that's not quite fitting in this city atmosphere.  

 Oh but it was a pleasant misfit... 

Obrigado Street Roda!








Publisher: Shy - Monday, May 21, 2012
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Romantic Melaka River Cruise


After walking around town, we were a bit exhausted but we were still excited to end the night with a river cruise. This is open from 9:30 to 11:30pm, but we decided to take it at night since it's best to see Melaka with all its beautiful evening lights.

When we got there, the counter was still close since the batch of boats were still doing a course, so we needed to wait for awhile which wasn't at all bad.  There were benches alongside the river and big trees all lined up.  Weird thing is that there are hundreds of bats hanging on these big old trees, so you have to watch out for guanos falling on you whenever you try to walk under these "bat trees".
Publisher: Shy - Monday, May 21, 2012
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Melaka: UNESCO Heritage

Red Buildings in Melaka town.

Stadthuys- the Red Buildings in Melaka

Stadthuys is located at the center of the city.  Surrounding this are drivers which will take you to different tourist sites, but will charge you around RM100 for their service - a bit expensive for backpackers.  Besides it's not really practical since you could spend the entire day walking around and already covering the important areas in Melaka.

First thing you could do is probably what tourists like us do: take pictures.  The buildings are interestingly different since these are painted red.  It's said to be the oldest Dutch building in the east and is a reproduction of Frisian towns of Hoorn in Netherlands that existed in 1420 to 1796.

Me checking some articles in a jonker near stadhuys.
There are a lot of things to see in the Stadthuys or town hall.  There's a grand fountain smacked in the middle of it.  I've read in reviews that you could take pictures of yourself with a big snake for RM10.  But when we went there, there wasn't any.  So we headed to the museum.  They charge RM5 for adults and RM3 for children.


In the museum, you'll get to see different articles which are remains of the Baba Nonya culture.  There are clothes, jars, swords, housewares and the likes.



I observed that the designs aren't much different from the Philippine's designs particularly with the Muslim culture.  Come to think of it, Muslims probably have a general artistic taste that are alike in many countries.

For a visitor like me, it's best to submerge yourself to the culture in Melaka by visiting Stadthuys first.  This will give you a great degree of understanding and appreciation of the other areas and spots which you will visit next.
Publisher: Shy - Monday, May 21, 2012

Thursday, May 17, 2012

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Longest Zipline In the Philippines: Playing Tag with the Birds


On our way to Camp Sambros, Kapatagan, Davao del Sur to experience the longest zip line adventure in the Philippines.
We had a friend in town and we were eager to let him experience the ULTIMATE Davao outdoor experience.  That is to do the 820-m zipline.  It is located in Kapatagan, Davao del Sur and is by far the longest zipline in the Philippines Ever!

Another habal habal driver we passed along the way.  Now imagine 4 adults riding that thing...

How to get to Camp Sabros

Using Private Car

The road going there is cemented, what is treacherous though is the 2hours of sitting.  However the rural scenery could somehow ease the tension on your butt.  It is advised that you use a private car since there aren't any buses or jeeps that will take you there.  It is relatively easy to make your way to the camp since there are road signs to Kapatagan.  Initially if you're coming from Davao City, you have to head your way down south until you reach the Welcome Sign of Digos. There are two road sandwiching the Sign, so you take the one on the right, which will lead you to Kidapawan.  From there watch out for the road signs going to Kapatagan, which is found on the right side of the road.  Head your way to Sitio Barras checkpoint, where you may need to park your car and start with your treck up the camp. If you somehow loose your way, asking locals for direction is always wise.

Using Public Transportation

In our case, we commuted.   We took the bus from Davao City to Digos Terminal.  From there we rode a tricycle going to the "old terminal".  The ride could be exciting but the smoke coming out from the engine screws up the experience.  There was a time that we needed to stop and let the tricycle rest due to overheat.  It wasn't able to take the uphill roads and basically our weights.  Upon reaching the old terminal, you would see habal habal drivers all calling out and already making deals with you as soon as you step your foot on the ground.  They're quite accustomed to tourists going there.  You would be offered around P1000 just to take you to the camp and back.  At first you would feel ripped off, but believe me, it's a looong way up going there so it was just worth the price.  So, we choose our habal habal driver, made the deal and forcefully fit ourselves in one long motorbike.  All 4 of us, the driver included. And we did so for 2hours.  

Our habal-habal ride ended at the Sitio Barras checkpoint and we had to do some trekking uphill for 2kilometers.  You could opt to ride a horse, which what our visitor/friend did. We just walked our way up.  When reaching the area, you would see Camp Sabros all filled up with few cottages and verandas and benches here and there.
My friend Anne.

Packages

There are several packages offered.  We got ourselves the Ultimate package that costs P750 each.  It already involves tree rapelling, 350m and 820m ziplining.  (Please refer below for the complete package/tour list)

Tree rapelling. Giddy Much! 

Remembering my First Zipline Experience in Camp Sambros

It was really an exhilarating experience.  I remembered doing it the first time.  I was with my friend, Ivy.  Both of us first timers. I was giddy, she was scared.  When our office mate asked for our pictures taken, I was smiling, she was crying.  The first moment of take off was more interesting.  We were shouting at the same time.  I was delighted, she was mortified.  She was screaming to the point that she was already ruining my experience.  So I shouted: "Ivy!!! Shut the Fck up!", now we don't usually say the F word.  But in this case, I felt that it was highly needed.  Then she went quiet. Moments later, she screamed. "Waaaaaaahhhh, waaaahhh... I love itt!" and so I smiled and just tried to take everything in: the surge of wind massaging my face, the glorious image of Mt. Apo on my left side, the grueling sight of height in front of us, the feeling of being suspended on air, the speed, the bird flying parallel to me.  The bird that seems as if we were flying together. I wanted to touch it.  But of course I can't.  That was how high we were up in the air.  It was just a wonderful experience.


Scene from above.

Being Swallowed by Clouds

When I did the 820m zipline, I already did a number just before it so experiencing it shouldn't be much of a difference.  Yet, it was.  It was longer of course.  But now we had to fly through clouds.  Yes.  There were a lot of clouds blocking the other end of the rope.  There was zero visibility.  The rope then was just swallowed by clouds.  Flying through clouds was another big experience for me.  I shall never forget it. 

Ride Package Rates/person

P150 - Roundtrip Cable lift
P200 - Roundtrip Cable lift + Tandem ride on 380 meters zipline
P280 - Tandem ride on 380 meters + solo ride on 400 meters zipline
P350 - Tree top  rappel + Roundtrip Cable lift
P350 - Tandem ride on 380 meters zipline + Roundtrip Cable lift
P400 - Tandem ride on 380 meters zipline + solo ride on 820 meters zipline or
            Horse back riding + solo ride on 820 meters zipline
P550 - Tandem ride on 380 meters + solo ride on 400 meters ziplines + Tree top rappel + cable lift
P550 - Tandem ride on 380 meters + solo ride on 400 meters ziplines + cable lift + solo ride on 820 meters zipline
P600 -solo ride on 820 meters zipline + Tree rappel
P750 - Tandem ride on 380 meters + 400 meters zipline + cable lift + solo ride on 820 meters zipline + Tree rappel

Day Tour Packages 
Day Tour Package A - P300 - Tandem ride on 380m zipline + cable lift + breakfast or lunch
Day Tour Package B - P670 - Tandem ride on 380m zipline + solo ride on 400m zipline + tree top rappel + cable lift + breakfast or lunch
Day Tour Package C - P670 - Tandem ride on 380m zipline + solo ride on 400m zipline + cable lift + 820m zipline + breakfast or lunch
Day Tour Package D - P870 - Tandem ride on 380m zipline + solo ride on 400m zipline + cable lift + tree top rappel + 820m zipline + breakfast or lunch

Note: If you wish to make reservations in their cottage or to schedule a tour there you may contact them through:

Email: campsabros@yahoo.com
Contact No.: 0922-8789751 or (082)303-6091


Publisher: Shy - Thursday, May 17, 2012

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

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Isla Reta: Naked and Loving it!


The scene of the beach from my nook.
I used to hate beaches.  It's hot. It makes my skin 3 shades darker, and I always feel awfully tired every time I go home.  Things have change ever since I met Reta.

It was love at first sight. I knew in my heart that I belong.  As soon as I stepped in, that was it. I found home.

Publisher: Shy - Wednesday, May 16, 2012
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Food Trip in Cebu: IT(Park) is the Place to Be

Food Trip in Cebu IT Park

My older sister specifically told me that she wanted to have a food trip in Cebu.  Being a food afficionado that she is, I wasn't surprised.  I came up with a list of places where we could get the best food in town, the sought-after, the unique, local, very Cebu food.  After coming up with a list, I discovered that a good number of restaurants are found in IT Park.  So I figured to go there and taste different kinds of dishes.   Jumping from one far location to another will not only cost us some money but will also eat up our time, which was something we didn't have on our side.


Casa Verde

First we went to Casa Verde, known to serve the best steak in town.  When we got there, we didn't order the steak.  Now realizing this, I'm wondering why.  And then I remembered that my siblings protested when I recommended it to them.  Reason was, they already knew what a steak tasted like.    So we went for meals that sounded quirky or unique.  We ordered watermelon salad, and another weird sounding dish.  My sister, brother and I started critiquing the food, like we're some food experts.  All of us were happy but not full, trying to save space for more food.  Before heading out, my brother ordered a huge burger.  He ordered it because it was huge, like pizza huge.


Casa Verde Menu
Publisher: Shy - Wednesday, May 16, 2012
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Our Cebu and Bohol Family Trip: This is How We Roll!

Since this Cebu/Bohol trip was our first official family trip, I thought of making a video for it.  We'll be doing another one this year and I'm terribly psyched about the itinerary and the places we'll be going.

Let the GOOD TIMES ROLL! :)

Happy Travel Everyone!


Publisher: Shy - Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

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Twilight shots on National Highway

Bohol National Highway - Mahogany Forest


The 20-kilometer Mahogany Forest is nothing short of amazing.  Yes you may have already seen it in pictures, but something really mystical takes place when you're in the actual forest.  There's some sort of energy that swallows you.  Makes you realize how small you are.  I think nature has that effect on you sometimes.

But yes, that was its effect on me.

In our case we did our first family jump shot.

Publisher: Shy - Tuesday, May 15, 2012
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Dying in Bohol Butterfly Farm

Bohol Butterfly Farm

If being surrounded by butterflies not fun for you, I don't know what is.  There is just something about these small creatures that really wants me to just gather them all and embrace them.  If those wings of them aren't that delicate, I would have hugged them all at once.

Now being from Davao, I've been to a butterfly farm before in Malagos Garden.  One thing that's different here is that the cage is smaller, which gives you higher chances of contact with them.

The Dreaded Tarsier Mascott 

As soon as we got in the area, we were welcomed by a Tarsier mascott.  I knew it was a mascott, but since it wasn't moving I figured it was just a statue of some sort.  When it moved all of a sudden, everybody near it gushed with fright- including my younger brother.  It was a delightful sight.  [I know, pathetic adjective.  For the lack of better way to describe it, yes, it was delightful. It made us giggled. And yes it was fun. Fun. Another pathetic adjective.  Read on please. Spot for more pathetic adjectives  :P]

My mother, sister and younger brother, and of course, the mascott.

Publisher: Shy - Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Friday, May 11, 2012

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

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You are From Davao If You Know These

1. That you need to go home by 2am after partying along Torres.
2. There's manong dancer who's usually seen dancing with the music played over at a Music shop right across the street along Claveria.
3. You're not allowed to smoke anywhere you want.
4. The only happening place are along Torres, and Rizal promenade.
5. If we want to get cheap veggies and fruits, we head on to BangkerohanbMarket.
6. For cheap groceries, we go to NCCC, and we know that more likely than not, the line for the cash register is looong unless you go there early.
7. That currently, Boulevard street is under construction so expect traffic on that area.
8.  Our mayor knows how to throw a punch and our vice mayor knows how to shoot people.
9. We got honest and usually friendly taxi drivers.
10. You could already have a decent meal with your 10pesos.
11. We know some have died from eating durian and drinking cola at the same time.
12. That David has a small penis. Small but golden.
13. If a guy tells you something romantically out of this world, the girl would say... "estoryaheee"
14. At top of Jacks Ridge amidst the picturesque scenery of Davao, you'll get to see the Memorial Park right below, which almost always gives you an anti climatic mood.  A feeling of amazement for the wide beautiful City that is Davao, but you feel sorry for the departed.
15. About the shortcut narrow pathway from Magallanes street going to San Pedro.
16. If you want to buy puppies with breed(halfbreed) there are a lot sold near JS Gaisano.
17. We can dial 911, and know that it will ring and there will be an operator assisting you.
18. We have a relatively safe New Year.  We scream and shout once clock strikes 12:01. After a few minutes, every thing is silent again.
19. You would use these in your sentences: jud, ba, gud, naga, gani, uy
20. That if we want to go to nature parks, rivers, beaches, and zoos, we'll have to spend an hour or more to get there.

If you're from Davao and you want to add something in my list, please share it with us in the comment box. :)

Publisher: Shy - Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Sunday, May 6, 2012

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Top 10 Things to do in Davao


10. Take a boat ride going to Isla Reta.  Go there earlier and you might get lucky to see dolphins swimming.
9. Drive in an hour ride down south to visit a number of our nature parks namely Malagos, and Eden.
8. Eat fried or adobong hito (catfish) in Mintal.
7. Enjoy eating durian in stalls in front of Magsaysay Park and take a walk inside the Park after, to burn off some calories.
6. Dine, drink a cup of coffee and party in restos, coffee shops, and bars all lined up along Torres Street.
Publisher: Shy - Sunday, May 06, 2012
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