travel

all sentiment is right

There are things that come back to me, quick and unannounced, like jump cuts. Or perhaps I am the one thrown back. The scene cuts and I am thrown into the past, or into the world I’d rather be in. The gun gets shot prematurely. But as if in perfect, deliberate delay, I ricochet between these worlds. This right now, that right one. I am walking and there is a breeze. I know I am embraced by the acacia, I feel the unpaved road beneath my feet but now I am walking on cobblestone, and it is cool and the sun feels too gentle on my face. And chattering, in a language so foreign it is familiar, cocoons me. I am walking down this road and it leads to the wrong museum. The painting at the end is too dark, too dim. It is not that vibrant blue, the ocean that engulfed me, the white zipping through like that the hitch, that one beat resting in my throat right on the second you smiled at me for the first time. There, every curve was to a song I sang in my head, hummed with closed lips, the one that rested on my hips. but here–they are the last 100 meters in a kilometer I am always running.

And here the leaves rustle and branches shake when the wind blows. There it is clear blue, or clear grey, or just a pale sunlight. Where have I run off to now?

entry from july 24, 2016 / 3:58AM

Flying over Dubai. I cannot believe time has flown by this quickly. It felt as if I was just on this same flight route but backwards only yesterday, but also I feel as if I’ve left a big part of myself already, somewhere in the canals of Amsterdam, the streets of Budapest, the far stretches of beyond in Switzerland. I have seen and felt it all and they have all been true. They have all been a part of me. I look out the window and the engines whir in whispers, as if to accompany me in some quiet sense that I have changed, that I am changing still; the world beneath my feet and in the palm of my hand. And I feel both distraught and relieved to be going back home–because what if you feel like home is already both Manila and in the company of some other? In a country that doesn’t speak your language, in a place where people will stare but forget who you are?

I want to yet again face the world with certainty. Oh God, let me find the courage and the strength to do so.

I have been so blessed and that is enough. Chili, may you remember that, always. You are blessed and that alone is enough to get you out there.

Forward, forward, forward. Onto other stories…

going dutch

i’ll be real right now, i really don’t want to be writing at this moment. it’s just that it’s a horribly awkward time to go to bed, and i need to keep my laptop on while i illegally download anthony bourdain travel shows. so here i am, 11:50PM in my room in utrecht, the netherlands; my roommate fast asleep and a dim incandescent light keeping me company. so much has happened since i got here, and honestly everything is just moving at a crazy pace and often i even find it difficult to keep up with daily happenings. i blinked and 2 months have passed.

anyway, let’s keep this light. here’s a list of little things i love about my experience here so far:

  1. cooking your first decent, socially acceptable meal from scratch
  2. sipping on cold belgian beer
  3. peeking at the results of your first roll of film
  4. random dancing with a sweet swede, aussie and swiss miss
  5. introducing vanille vla to a vla virgin
  6. biking with the wind on a rare sunny saturday afternoon
  7. meeting strangers baking in your own kitchen
  8. fitting perfectly into an impulse-buy leather jacket
  9. standing in front of a barnett newman
  10. getting hit on quite unpredictably by a odd irish fellow on st. paddy’s day
  11. hitching on the back of someone’s bike
  12. watching pink tulips bloom on your windowsill
  13. surviving the worst aka getting your entire bag stolen on your first day
  14. talking about andrei tarkovsky with your 6’5″ tall, dutch-italian twin brother
  15. drinking a cappuccino in a cozy cafe along the canal
  16. finding aesthetic sisters among your flatmates
  17. confronting the cutest pizza delivery boy in the planet
  18. winning a bowl of chips (w mayo) in a pub quiz
  19. shoveling down a kaassouffle in a dodgy snackbar at 4AM
  20. sharing bottles of wine with a table of people from all over the world on taco night
  21. booking your flight ticket for your first solo backpacking adventure
  22. indulging in warm and free stroopwafels
  23. slaying at yogalates
  24. saying dank u wel and alstublieft right for the first time
  25. feeling utterly at home in a country on the other side of the world

it just keeps piling up. i love where i am right now. bless.

TRAVEL: Osaka, Japan 2015

Got an additional 4GB of RAM for my laptop today!! So to celebrate this wonderful occasion (yes! this is monumental!) I finally got to export some of my Japan travel photos from last spring. Experimented again (lol) since I’m still trying to get a grip on my ~post-processing look~. Can’t wait to upload more shit lol. Life update soon maybe? Photo heavy under the cut!

DSC_0030

(more…)

TRAVEL: El Nido, Palawan; January 2015

This is a really random and late upload but I’m finding excuses to procrastinate and delay studying for my accounting exam on Monday. So here are some of my favorite photos from our beach trip to my favorite place on earth, El Nido, Palawan. We (Bea, Livi, Anya and I) went there for my best friend Nicole’s 18th birthday. Much fun. Can’t wait to get out of school (which detestably ends in a month and with the summer season) and have the time to be a carefree bum on a beach.

Rather photo-heavy under the cut. I own all the photos. Shot using a Nikon D3100 35mm. Post-processing by yours truly.

DSC_0498

(more…)

a belated new year’s post

Well hello there, 2015. You’ve been a sly little bitch so far.

  1. This holiday season was spent eating my heart out with my immediate family. And a sidetrip to the boondocks with stunning views while we all tried to pretend we could stand one another.
  2. My grades were surprisingly superb given the hell I went through last sem. Excluding EL50 since my professor refuses to post our grades yet (much to my chagrin). I have no idea how he’ll grade us– the wait will either lead to (1) a beautiful ending to that hell sem or (2) me shitting on his face. There is no in-between.
  3. Love is sharing your last cigarette with a friend.
  4. Well. I should quit cold turkey anyway– but you know, fuck it.
  5. I have reached the low point of pathetic and desperate by listening to nature wave sounds on Spotify. I really, really, really miss the beach. I went to El Nido, Palawan (my favorite place on this planet, legit) with my best friends and I have a terrible case of separation anxiety. That trip convinced me that I am meant to live on a beach forever. The withdrawal symptoms are making me antsy. Reminding self to post photos soon.
  6. Not to mention depressed as fuck. This recent wave has been keeping me drowning in misery. To the point that I’m really connecting with Dostoevsky.
  7. Survival is masking your depression with kitten photos and vodka sprites.
  8. As for resolutions. I’d like to (1) exercise regularly, (2) learn something that people wouldn’t normally associate me with (ex. “wow! you can fix a car?”), (3) become that cool yoga lady who wakes up at 5 am to look at the sunrise and greets people with namaste, (4) read more books, (5) improve my make-up game and (6) afford my lifestyle. Not bad.
  9. Diving and driving license. iPhone 6. Faster laptop. #goals
  10. Turns out people really do get fed up with themselves as they grow older. I only like myself because I have new pillows.

Here’s a sneak peek to my post-processed El Nido photos. Also. I hope to upload my backlog of travel photos soon (Cambodia, Vietnam, Korea). Taken during the breathtaking sunset of our last night. I miss the trifecta (sun, sea, sand).

DSC_0779

TRAVEL: NSTP SURP Camping Trip with Basquille, Mt. Makiling

Well hello there, people of the interwebs!

I am crawling out of my cave of inactivity to post this set of photos I took last April 25-27 during a field trip in Los Banos, Laguna. For the summer semester I took a rappelling and survival CWTS (Civil Welfare Training something) class under the School of Urban and Regional Planning to fulfill my NSTP (National Service Training Program) requirement.  Basically it’s a month long program where we learn how to respond to emergencies and disasters as citizens. For the past 4-5 weeks my teammates and I have been learning rappelling, CPR, compass navigation, proper carrying, bandaging, knotting, camping strategies and general fun things like ziplining and trekking. So as a culminating activity and a test of our new abilities, we all had to attend this 3 day camping trip in the heart of Mt. Makiling.

This trip earned a special place in my ~heart~ because (1) this was my first college field trip (and it definitely was UP material), (2) I was with the clingiest, vainest, craziest and best team ever (#BASQUILLE), and (3) it was ridiculously fun and almost disgustingly unforgettable. I’ll break it down for you later on, and you’ll get to know my insane teammates too. LOL.

Shot using my Nikon D3100 55 mm. Post-processing using Photoshop CS6. All photos taken and edited by yours truly.

DSC_2142

 Gilbert traverses. Instructor relaxes. 

(more…)

life update, basically

Just wanted to tell you strangers that I am flying out to Korea today!

I don’t know why I had to blog about it but then again, I am quite excited. Y’all don’t know how happy I am for this break… to eat delicious Korean food and hopefully even more delicious boys WAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA (i’m a pervert 1/2 joke)

Idk if I’ll be traveling again out of the country this year so I’ll be sure to make the most out of this trip! I’ll be seeing snow and skiing for the first time in my life so wish me luck I guess? [[I actually am significantly bummed because I’m missing the Philippine Contemporary Art exhibit this weekend. Alas, a trade-off.]]
Anyway have a happy weekend folks! Thanks for keeping up with unusually chipper Chili.

BACOLOD HITS, MassKara 2013

Best friends. Reunion. Wild. Eleven Degrees. Menthol. Inasal. Vomit. Street parties. Crowdsurfing. Sweat. Masks. Smiles. Deadweights. Waterfalls. Police. Jello shots. Garaje. El Hombre. Frankfurt. Speedy Gonzales. Total Wreck. Aztec. Mortification. Assholes. Bitches. Accents. Concussions. Smoke. Jeepneys. España. Puerto Princesa. Cockblock. Siberia. Walks. Bob’s. San Ignacio. Pepe’s. Revel bars. Sugar canes. Mountains. Ruins. Lorde. Switzerland. Kisses. Forgetting. Cinnamon rum. Gypsy. Invasion. Toms. Road trips. KFC. Royals. Gays. Reflections. Animo. Panama. Showers. Tequila. Falling. Taxi cabs. Cookies and cream. Dancing. Bandages. Coca-cola. Sulfur. Fire. Hipsters. Art. Lies. Afternoons. Cousins. Connections. Lacson. Parades. Taj Mahal. Dialect. Wewerts. Sprak. Airplanes. Cup noodles. Gatsby. Secrets. VIP. Adrenaline. Bats. Cat calls. Farewells. Promises. Laughter. Long Island. Golf. Possibilities. Euphoria. YOLO. First times.

No words are worthy enough to describe Bacolod.
BEST FUCKING TRIP EVER