What Could Go Wrong With Tali, Batangas?

or You Suck at Looking for Vacation Houses

It was a 4-day weekend and my dad and I have planned this family trip weeks ago. We wanted somewhere near, not too expensive; some place we can relax even if it rains. I think it was my dad’s assistant who did the googling. She suggested we check out this certain beach house in Tali Beach, Nasugbu, Batangas. The house looks old and stuff in the photos, but we said “okay, okay”, “maybe it’s just the homey kind of old”, “the reviews look okay”, “we can’t go wrong with Tali, its a private subdivision for rest houses”, and so on. Until we actually got there. Although there was a caretaker, it smelled as if it’s been a long time since someone had an actual vacation there. Truth is, the doors and furniture actually look like they could have been really nice before. With all the carvings and decorations.

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I’ve Got Pot from Vigan

One of the things I was able to try for the first time in Vigan — making a pot!

As part of our one-day tour around Vigan and Laoag, we went to GR Jars Pottery.
One potter can make over 200 of these a day. Continue reading “I’ve Got Pot from Vigan”

Vigan and Laoag in a Day

A one day tour around Vigan and Laoag is like browsing through pages of a history book. Just to give you an idea of what’s there to see, I’d like to share some of the photos I took of buildings, museums and old things from our tour a week ago.

Having stayed in Fort Ilocandia, Laoag, we hired a tour van to drive us all the way to Vigan for an hour and a half. From there, the tour begins.

  • Syquia Mansion. Built in 1830, this mansion was the ancestral home of the wife of former President Elpidio Quirino, Dona Alicia Syquia. Entrance at P20. 

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That Pretty Street in Vigan — Calle Crisologo

My mom comes from an Ilocano clan, but for some reason I don’t remember ever going to Vigan when we were younger. I have often envied the pretty photos of its streets, buildings and calesas so it’s pretty exciting that I can now share my own.

This is from Calle Crisologo — one of the most beautiful streets in the Philippines. I always thought all streets in Vigan look this way. Continue reading “That Pretty Street in Vigan — Calle Crisologo”

The Best of Laoag: Fort Ilocandia

With much luck, I had the opportunity to visit what they say is the only 5-star resort hotel in the North of Luzon — Fort Ilocandia. It isn’t peak season this time of the year so there weren’t a lot of guests around the huge resort. And of all the guests we were with, perhaps 80 percent were foreign — specifically Chinese and Korean. All around the vicinity you’d see Chinese translations of signs and such, so it’s pretty obvious it’s their market.

We flew to Laoag via Cebu Pacific at around 6:30pm.You can opt to road trip or take a bus from Manila, but this will take something like 10 hours, as compared to the 1.5 hours you’ll spend flying. When we got to Fort Ilocandia after a 20-minute van ride from the airport, chandeliers and yellow lights greeted us hello.

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FiveFingers: Are you wearing your feet?

Sinha Bahia Capoeira had a demo class at SMX last Saturday for the Sports and Fitness Expo 2011. We were sponsored by a certain “VIBRAM Five Fingers” — I mean, what the hell is that? It doesn’t sound so sporty to me. So anyway, I found out they were actually shoes.

And if you ask me, they shoulda been called “FiveToes” instead. Ugly if you just look at ’em, but the concept is pretty cool. It’s supposed to lessen the cushion between you and the ground so you actually get to use the muscles on your feet. That way, you get to do sports — run, trek, climb, yoga, do martial arts or even water sports — as if you’re barefooted. Pretty much the same concept as Nike Free. And it’s as expensive too. This particular design, Sprint, is worth a little less than P5,000.

Side note: I found out about this from the January 2011 issue of Runner’s World, whose cover features a guy from the office — Javy Olives.

Anyway, here are some photos from the event.

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If you want to go all natural with your sports, this is a pretty good alternative to your good ‘ol running shoes. I imagine using this on my trekking/water sports trips. Quite excited to use them again, actually. Outdoors this time. Even if they may look a bit stupid.

Cartimar: The Divisoria for Pets

If Divisoria is for clothes and Dangwa is for flowers, Cartimar is the shopping complex for pets. Yes, pets! And you might have heard that this place is oftentimes raided for illegally selling endangered animals. Name them — monkeys, snakes, birds, spiders, turtles, all these wild creatures and more. It’s like a zoo, except you can actually buy the poor little things. Good thing I didn’t see any when we went there yesterday.

So my sister Nikka and I drove all the way to Pasay to buy a few things for our beloved fishies — my grandmother and I have 3 aquariums back home. Since we had some time to waste, we did a little exploring. We were more interested in the fish section so most of our photos are from there.

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