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The long bus ride

>> Monday, November 28, 2011

November 21. It was a Monday. It was supposedly a fresh start for the week, equipped with a feeling brimming with hope and determination. It was just the beginning. Hope should last until the week draws to a close.

But the good does not always come as expected. Good was nowhere near that Monday -- well, at least for the commuting part.

The lines to the trains were three floors down. The trains were supposed to be a convenience, the fastest way to reach a certain destination. It wasn't for that Monday. The trains became a nuisance for employees and those headed South. There was a delay which no one knew the reason why. There were two ways to deal with it -- wait in line until the trains arrive and accommodate all passengers; or take another transportation, a bus, an FX or a taxi cab.

The bus became the option but it wasn't the best choice. It would wait at every possible stop to wait for passengers. The regular 40-minute train ride was extended to two hours, all because of the desire to pick up passengers and earn money for the day. Never mind the time hassle or the standing inside the moving vehicle. A movie played inside the bus was the only way to distract passengers from the passing time. If one wasn't into a suspense movie about robbers having a heated discussion with a man who was pretending to be rich, then he would notice the slower-than-a-snail pace of the traffic.

Three hours of travel. It could be cut down into an hour and forty minutes if it weren't for the delayed train and the long lines. A thirty-minute late mark on the time card served as a memory of that day where one surrendered to the day's events. Nothing could be done to reverse that unfortunate Monday.

(Also seen on Tumblr.)


DIY Planner on Hold

>> Saturday, November 26, 2011

For three years, I have been making my own planner (2009, 2010, 2011). I was about to make one for next year when Jace stopped me and told me not to push through with it. I sensed something was fishy until he told me what the fuss was all about.

I got my first Christmas gift from him -- a Starbucks planner.

For the Filipinos, November is the start of the Starbucks sticker craze. One is given a card where you have to collect a certain number of stickers in exchange for a planner. For every drink bought, a sticker was placed onto the card. I used to collect stickers then gave up on it because it was bloody expensive to collect. Imagine buying seventeen drinks (9 Christmas drinks and 8 regular drinks) almost every day just to get a planner. That's around P2300. Ouch.

Anyway, I received my planner already and I'm just waiting for December to start so I can write on it (the planner starts December of 2011). I'm also collecting stickers for another planner.

Even with a planner already, it didn't stop me from personalizing it. What is a planner if it isn't a Yumi planner?

This is how the planner looks like when you complete the sticker card.

Photo courtesy of @badskin on Tumblr, who also got her planner last week.

I took out my markers and drew a Starbucks cup on the cover. I'm a bit addicted to the Cranberry White Chocolate Mocha, even if the Cranberry is just syrup squeezed on top of the whipped cream. It just made the White Chocolate Mocha look fancy and Christmas-y.

Then, using the poster paint, I added colors to the doodled cup.

Wah-lah! No more brown and plain cover!

Also seen on Tumblr.

P.S. I promised Ariaxami that I'll post a photo of my study table. All except for one are prints from my Holga camera. It's my rainbow photo wall!

Spot that one photo that came all the way from Denver. It's a special photo!


Christmas cheer in a cup of coffee

>> Monday, November 21, 2011

I went to work last Saturday. We held a workshop for parents and teachers on Singapore Math. I was in charge of taking videos. While the participants were busy taking notes or answering math word problems, I was busy doodling. Behold, the tree of squiggly lines. I found my new hobby: Doodling on paper cups.


But since I could not keep my paper cup (who would like a dirty paper cup to keep, anyway?), I redid the tree on my Moleskine.

That night, I had dinner alone at Starbucks while waiting for my parents to pick me up. It wasn't a lonely dinner because I had a book, some good music, my Moleskine and pens to keep me company.

What did you do last Saturday?


Afternoon delight is a dessert, right?

>> Thursday, November 17, 2011

I chanced upon two bugs getting it on when I took a trip to the province. I hope they didn't notice my huge-ass camera staring at them during their little buggy love making. This is the best NatGeo-ish photo I have ever taken.

Isn't nature fascinating?

Also seen on Tumblr.


No One Mourns the Wicked

>> Friday, November 11, 2011

"And goodness knows the wicked's lives are lonely
Goodness knows, the wicked die alone
It just shows when you're wicked, you're left only on your own"

-No One Mourns the Wicked, Wicked the Musical

My Moleskine just went green.

Also seen on Tumblr.


Take a trip to Singapore

>> Monday, November 07, 2011

"Take a trip to Singapore and imagine how I'll make the world a better place."

A check on the tick box marked "Singapore." I'm ending this Singapore recap with a video of our five-day stay there. It's a compilation of the videos I took from all the walking that we did. The song I used is by Corrinne May, entitled "Little Superhero Girl." She's one of my favorite singers and coincidentally, she's a Singaporean.

Lyrics here.

P.S. Adobe Premier is love. I need to tinker with it more and feel like I'm a big shot video editor. hahah


A Very Singaporean Week: Botanic Gardens and Asian Civilization Museum (part 3)

>> Saturday, November 05, 2011

On to the last part of my Singapore photos. But it's definitely not the last entry about it!

October 14

It was a whole day of workshop and training at the Canossa Convent Primary School. We observed another class, this time at the lower level. We saw how teachers use discussion and questioning to challenge the student's critical thinking skills. The rest of the day was spent challenging my brain in answering math problems using visualization through boxes -- the Singaporean way. Singapore Math isn't really invented by Singapore nor that it actually exists. The method has been around since the time of Euclid, but it was only the Singaporeans who incorporated the systematic way of teaching in their math curriculum.

We were given a booklet of word problems to solve. I knew how to solve it algebraically, but we had to solve it without using x or y. It killed my brain. haha

We finished 5pm and planned to go to the Asian Civilization Museum after an early dinner. However, on the way home to drop our things, the train from Aljunied to Kallang broke down and we were stuck in the middle of those two stations. The train stood still for around 15 minutes. I observed that Singaporeans were not used to delays because they kept on making impatient grunts. It was nothing to me, T. Beth and Adi, because we are already used to train delays in the Philippines. After waiting for so long, the train finally moved but in slow jerks, as if someone was pulling the train, one step at a time. We decided to get down at Kallang and take the bus home.

With the train delay, we had to kiss goodbye to the museum. But we didn't end the day disappointed because we had a yummy dinner. *sing song* Chicken riiiiiiice!

October 15

Ann advised us not to take a bath in the morning because she said we would sweat it out for the last trip for the day before heading home. We took the train for a morning walk at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. It was the last stretch of our walking trip. We also had our breakfast there.

The Singapore Botanic Garden is the place for sporty people, music enthusiasts, and nature and animal lovers. My favorite part was the orchid garden where I took a lot of photos of pretty orchids.

I found my family! Haha Oh Taiji I miss you so much.


This is the first time that I'm seeing a Venus Fly Trap up close.

We saw this sign after feeding the swans and the turtles. Oops.

Since we still had time, we went to the place that we missed out the night before. It was a blessing that we weren't able to go to the Asian Civilization Museum because on that morning that we finally went, we found out that it was an Open House. We were able to get in for free! I love going to museum and this trip is special because I got to see the terra cotta soldiers from China. One epic piece of history right before my eyes.

Famous celebrities stay here when they visit Singapore

Even terra cotta soldiers listen to music

Or update their Twitter status. :))

Photo on right: Adi said it's the Taiji Terra Cotta. haha

Everything was done quickly after our visit to the museum: a quick lunch in an Indian restaurant (onion prata for the win), a quick shower, quick packing, quick shot with Ann before saying our goodbyes (tear). But it wasn't a quick trip to the airport. On the way there, we got stuck in traffic because of an accident on the highway. Uncle (the taxi man who drove us to the airport) was so worried that we would miss our flight. We hurriedly dragged our bags to the counter as soon as we got to the airport, only to find out that our flight was delayed for two hours. Tatatadah. We maximized our waiting time by eating dinner in the airport, as well as do last minute shopping. Hello two new books!

We arrived in Manila around 9:30 PM. As soon I got home, I was dead tired. I had only enough energy to change into my sleep clothes before going to dreamland.

- More photos in my Multiply.
- Entry on Sentosa.
- Entry on Chinatown and Marina Bay
- Moleskine entry: Doodling Singapore


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