I’ve been really busy the past month, so forgive my lack of posts…
For one, I’ve been doing a lot of prepping for my trip to Japan… like getting my passport (oh my God, the lines at DFA will leave you jaw-dropped!!) then getting my Visa (the Japan embassy is very pretty). And since I’m a CHED scholar, I also had to get clearance from CHED so I could travel, because government scholars have a travel ban. That meant getting letters from ADMU and ADZU, then giving those to the Grad Office here in ADMU and then gingerly waiting for CHED to process my request then finally picking it up at their office and then visiting the Bureau of Immigration to make sure I didn’t have a hold order in their files. Thankfully I finished all two days ago! (I almost didn’t!) Hurray! Hehehe.
Another thing that kept me really busy was finishing up my requirements three weeks earlier than my classmates! That was really tiring. I had back-to-back reports, final exams and projects, sooo stressful!! But all my teachers really were very accommodating, and were lenient when sometimes I had to ask for schedule changes because things were always “coming up”. Heheh. One of the projects I am most proud of is a mobile game that my lab partner Chris and I made, it’s called CrumbleWall, it runs on a K750 (we didn’t have time to edit it to fit other phone models) and it’s a clone of the very popular online game Super Collapse. It’s our first ever mobile game, and we got a perfect score during the final defense! Heheheh!
One very bright spot during this month was my barkada coming over to Manila for our very first ever barkada outing. It’s been a long time coming, we’ve known each other for almost 13 years now! And some of them I’ve known for almost 20 years! And though we always hang out, have day parties, night parties, slumber parties, picnics, all the things you do with your best friends, we’ve never traveled together. So last December, we vowed to finally do it. After all, we were all working, all of us could afford it (well, most), and we severely missed each other. :)
Not everyone could make it, though. Brian just started working at ADZU and with family and lovelife commitments (hehe), he couldn’t afford the trip. Katrina is in HongKong and refuses to come home for some reason, instead she tells us, “Next time Malaysia, guys!!” Okaaayyy… hehehehe.
Nevertheless we had great fun! Jotie, Donnel and Chris arrived on a Friday. Raquel picked them up and they ate at MOA, then visited OceanPark to verify the soft opening, then picked me up here in Katipunan, when we went to SM Megamall to meet Raq’s boyfriend Cip, eat dinner and buy Christopher’s new camera. Following that Cip and Raq drove us to Raquel’s new house in Sta. Mesa and we called it a night. I also busted my toe owing to room arrangement arguments.
I wanted to be with the guys coz I hadn’t seen them in so long, but having four of us in one room was a tight fit. So I agreed we could have two in a room each, and I was okay with any of them. Chris and Raquel were downstairs, and the rest of us were negotiating (or more like quarreling!) upstairs. I preferred Donnel, but Jotie wanted Donnel to be his roommate. But I didn’t want Chris to be my roommate because I didn’t think he’d be comfortable with that! Oh and he really didn’t want to be my roomie either! We couldn’t get to an agreement, Donnel, Jots and me. So Donnel and Jotie tried to trick me by running out of the room to the next room so I wouldn’t have a choice. I tried to run after them, and in my rush, the bed I was sitting on folded and fell, and clumsy me, I had my toe in the perfect place to be smashed. Hay. And so it turned blue, and then black and it hurt so much and I was so embarrassed I cried. Heheheh. The good news is that seeing what happened, Chris no longer had any problems being my roomie, and it was a good thing, because we got to talk and talk the whole night, and a lot of sorry’s for our struggled past were made, and a whole 9 years of best-friend blackout vanished in a span of 3 hours. Thank you God! Heheheh.
The next day, I woke up first and took a bath right away. Chris and Donnel next, and then Jots and last Raquel. We made breakfast and ate, with Chris being a very “hands-on” chef with all the arranging and rearranging of our food. I tried not to think of that while eating. Hehehehe. Jotie was right when he said he preferred not seeing how his food was made. Hehe.
Then we went to the newly opened Ocean Park, and it was sooo beautiful. There were sting rays, and sharks, and corals and large clams and glowing fish, on the side, up above, down below – wow!! It was amazing! My cam had just died out on my a month before and I was so sad I didn’t have any tool to record the experience save for my paltry VGA camphone. It was a good thing the guys had a camera each, and they were the ones who took lots of pics, especially Chris with his brand new Canon 570.
In the afternoon we went to Enchanted Kingdom, passing by Pancake House for a quick lunch. At EK, we had so much fun and I got so wet from Log Jam and Rio Grande Rapids! But I loved the Flying Fiesta and the Bump Cars! And I didn’t touch Anchors Away! Heheheh. At the end of the way we bought so many souvenirs and brought home so many memories.
That night I went home here to Katipunan coz I no longer had a change of clothes. The rest of them stayed at Raquel’s. The following morning we met up at the bus station to go to Baguio. The trip was very long, 7-8 hours. We got to Baguio around 1 or 2pm. We stayed in a hotel across Burnham Park, and that afternoon and evening we visited Mines View Park, The Mansion, a haunted house, and some other parks. Baguio is such a beautiful place.
The next day we went to the Philippine Military Academy (what a beautiful campus), a strawberry farm in Benguet, visited an Ifugao gallery, and visited Raquel’s future in-laws. Hehehe. By 2pm we returned to the hotel and gathered our things and bade goodbye to Baguio. And by 3pm we were in the terminal, and by 9 or 10pm that night, bade goodbye to each other in Manila.
And though I was very very tired that night as I lay on my bed, I couldn’t help but feel so empty and homesick for my friends… I wish our next excursion comes soon. Really, really soon. :)
By the way… I got a new camera, in preparation for Japan. It’s a Canon S5 IS, heheh, it’s almost a pro camera, but I couldn’t afford the really really good ones. But it’s got 8 megapixels and 12x optical zoom, and an image stabilizer and video and sound. It has so many functions and it has a movable LCD and a hot shoe (for additional flash) and it can handle interchangeable lens.
And best of all, I haggled for it and got it at a P3000 discount. Mad skills, huh? Heheheh. I learned it from Chris!