Musings from the Mosh Pit…

Thoughts. Tales. Travels. Whatever.

Birthday Bonanza in Bangkok – Day 3 & 4 April 6, 2012

Filed under: excellent adventures with friends,friends,tales,travels — fizzywoohoo @ 5:49 am
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Day 3: We had to be up and ready by 7am for our activities on this day.  We had made prior arrangements with Lok the day before to take a whole day tour which would include: an elephant ride, a trip to the floating market, lunch and then an elephant show and a visit to a crocodile sanctuary.

We couldn’t really figure out why we had to be up early for the tour.  Turns out, seeing the above places meant traveling outside of Bangkok for an hour or so.  First on the agenda was The Elephant Village.  Elephant rides here cost about 500-600 THB per person and can last for about 20-30 minutes..depending on your elephant.  The one we rode was named Laikini (I might have gotten it wrong), she’s 20 years old and kept stopping to eat and drink.  The man guiding us said that she was already 1 year and 3 months pregnant.  (elephants carry their babies for about 2 years)

We asked if she was the oldest in their care.  He said no and pointed to the one in front of us who was already 40 years of age!

I admit that I was scared for the most part even if the pacing was slow.  Whenever the elephant would bend down to drink or pick grass, your position tilts awkwardly and I was afraid of falling off.  I grabbed onto Ava’s arms so tight until she finally had to say, “Can you let go for a short while?  I can’t use my arm to take pictures haha”.

At the end of the ride you can have a moment with the elephants for some picture taking or in our case, our guide handed us some bananas and sugar canes to feed them with.

After that it was a quick 10 minute ride to the Damnoensaduak Floating Market.  Riding the paddled boat to shop around will cost about 150 THB per person.  We passed on this one since our tour included a motor boat ride that would take us around the surrounding areas.  We just stayed near the docking area to look at the goods being sold and of course to try out some hot noodle soup!

The soup (about 25 THB) is given to you without any spices.  Once you sit down in one of the nearby small tables, you get to have a go at how you want it to taste by mixing different sauces and chillis and then…dig in!

Our tour guide treated us to this one.  In the Philippines, this would be similar to Maja Blanca–it has a pudding like texture of coconuts, milk and bits of corn kernels and then slightly fried.

We were dropped off by the motorboat to a sort of floating mini resort where the rooms or huts are elevated on top of the water.  A short walk takes you to the King Cobra Show.  Even if we didn’t see it, there was a temple beside it so it was still a good chance to take some more photos.

Meet friendly tour guide No. 2–Ms. Bangkok.  We don’t know her real name…that’s just how she introduced herself.

It was time for lunch and here was pad thai no. 2 of the trip.  To me it tasted better than the first.  Our meal consisted of tom yum  soup, pad thai, steamed veggies and I think the other one was fish cakes.

Afterwards, it was another long drive to the Samphran Elephant Ground Zoo.  The show starts off with a magic show, which I actually enjoyed.  The elephant show chronicles the history and shows the importance and high esteem that the Thai people put on these majestic creatures starting from the early years of Siam.  We also learned that all elephants are considered property of the King.

Beside this area is where the crocodiles are.  Some of them you’ll find just underneath the wooden bridge, with their mouths open….*shivers*

Some of the elephants from the show are placed inside these small pens just after the crocodile area.  It’s a good place to interact with them.

Near the exit, you can have a picture taken with these tigers for 100 THB.  They sure look calm and relaxed but I didn’t want to take the chance.

That was the end of our tour and we were all back in the van dropping everyone off at their respective hotels.  Before heading back to ours, we stopped by again at the Platinum Mall for some last minute shopping for gifts to take home and also to get some dinner.  Here is pad thai no. 3  (about 30 THB) from one of the food stalls on our street.  This gets my vote for the best pad thai of our trip!

Day 4:  All too soon, the Bangkok adventure reaches it’s final day.  We packed our stuff and headed to the main building to check out and wait for our ride back to the airport.

Flying home was a bit bumpy and it took a while before lunch was served.

Hello again, Manila!

We had a wonderful time in Bangkok.  Lots of fun memories we’ll surely treasure for a long time.  I’m glad we celebrated my birthday there.  Even though there are a lot of other countries we’d like to see and visit, Thailand has already earned itself another “must return” vote from us.

Kob khun ka, Thailand!

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Birthday Bonanza in Bangkok – Day 1 & 2

I told my good friend Ava last year that I’d like to do something different for my birthday this year.  That’s when Bangkok entered the picture.  I made travel arrangements, researched on the hotel, the train systems, the currency, listed places to see and shop at and picked up a few useful phrases.  I also attempted to make an itinerary…”attempted” because with so much information, I pretty much gave up on the idea and decided we’d just wing it when we got there.  We were already ticketed a month and a half before our March 15 departure and I was crossing off the numbers on my desk calendar until finally the big day has arrived!

Day 1: We arrived at PAL Terminal 2 pretty early–about 3.5 hours before our 1030am flight.  It left on time and it was actually smooth flying–so smooth that I dozed off after the meal was served.  Ava on the other hand spent the hours watching Adam Sandler’s Jack and Jill on the flight.

Di plane! Di plane!

Upon setting foot in Thailand’s Suvarnumbhumi International Airport (I can finally spell it without googling it!) we were totally floored at how big and beautiful it was.  Took a while to get past immigration (long lines!) and find my suitcase so our tour guide had already been waiting for us for a good 30 minutes before we showed up at the exit.  In the van, we were also joined by a Filipino doctor and his Spanish wife.  They were pleasant people and even if we weren’t billeted in the same hotel, we would see them throughout our entire stay.

That’s my buddy Ava leading the way…though admittedly we both didn’t know where to go to at first so we just followed the flock of people heading in this direction.

Once outside, this was the first thing we saw…colorful Bangkok taxis!  According to our tour guide, each color corresponds to the company of a particular taxi operator.

While waiting for our van, the doctor’s wife was kind enough to offer to take our picture.  This was the first of only 2 pictures of us during the entire trip that was taken by another person.  The first few minutes of travel from the airport was pretty fast.  There were hardly any bumps or cracks on the road so it was a comfortable ride.  When we got to the city proper and near our hotel, that’s when the bumper to bumper traffic appeared.  It gave me a chance to look out the window and take in the surroundings.  Bangkok reminded me so much of Manila–the traffic, the motorcycles that weave in and out of it, the little eateries along the road, the signs on the shops (they look the same except I don’t read Thai), the graffiti on the walls, the laundry hung outside of windows and yes, even the occasional man walking shirtless inside his property haha!  Though I must take my hats off to Bangkok for being a very clean city.  Even the markets, when they’ve already closed shop for the day, seem cleaner.

We arrived at our hotel, Citin Pratunam about 4 in the afternoon.  Pratunam is a shopping district located in Ratchathewi.  Who needs a 5 star hotel when this budget hotel is just as comfortable?  It’s clean, quiet and the staff are all smiles and always very helpful.  You can read about my review of this hotel here or you can visit their website.

When we finally settled in and did a quick freshen up, it’s time to explore the streets!  As soon as we stepped out of the small street where the hotel was located, we went wherever our feet took us.  There were so many street vendors selling clothes and some knick knacks that it’s hard to focus your attention on just one stall in particular.  Amongst the throngs of shops selling clothes, we finally found some vendors who sold food.  Apart from the shopping, we were really looking forward to the food!  And what better way to start the food adventure than by trying this:

Crickets.  Yes, crickets.  When Ava first whipped out her camera to take a picture, the lady vendor violently refused so my friend said, “If I buy, can I take a picture then?”  The vendor still refused.  She probably didn’t understand the question so another vendor nearby explained it to her and eventually she smiled when she realized we were buying.  There were all sorts of crazy insects on her basket…but these came highly recommended.  She was also pointing at the worms and giving us the thumbs up sign (which Ava wanted to try) but we ended up not buying it.  To be quite honest, it didn’t taste bad….it tasted like barbecue flavored chips actually.  The pandan leaves that it was cooked with gave it some flavor and good aroma too.  The only thing I had a problem with is that when you scoop them up on the spoon, some of them had their eyes on you which creeped me out a bit.  So, my eyes were always closed every time I’d put the spoon in my mouth.  This entire bag costs 10 THB.

A few stalls after the insects, I found some dumplings…fresh off the steamer!  You get 5 pieces also for the price of 10 THB.

We walked some more down the small street until we reached the intersection with the main road.  Across we found the Platinum Mall.  This was taken at the foot bridge as we made our way towards the mall.

After going around the mall for about an hour, we got hungry (crickets can’t really make you feel full after all) so we went up to the food court and ordered veggie dumplings and a plate of pad thai.  This is the first of 3 pad thais that we’ll eat during the trip and honestly this first one only gets a bronze medal from me.

After a long hot day, I couldn’t resist the urge to open a very cold can of coke.  We later on found out that Thailand is a “Pepsi Country” so finding a can of coke was hard to come by.

Day 2: The tour that came with the package was scheduled on this day.  Our guide picked us up at 8:30am and first on the agenda was Wat Intharawihan or The Temple of the Standing Buddha.  Here you’ll find a golden Buddha statue that stands 32 meters tall and 10 meters and 24 inches wide.  The place also had other versions of the Buddha statue.

Lotus flowers sold at the temple entrance

To enter the plaza where the giant golden Buddha stands, you’ll have to pass by a blue and gold gate with marble walls on each side.  These walls are also used to hold urns though I’m not quite sure who gets the honor of being laid to rest here.

The craftsmanship on these doors is really amazing.  It makes the entire structure pop even if you’re still some feet away.

Next we went to Wat Traimit or The Temple of the Golden Buddha.

Here is our friendly tour guide No. 1 Lok.  At the time we arrived, monks were still praying inside.  People can go in and stay in the back while they pray.  Although make sure you read up on the rules of temple etiquette.  Lok mentioned that her son, who is about 20 years old will become a monk in a few months time.  I asked her how she felt about it and she smiled and said that she’s truly honored.  Even if her son will leave her and can no longer experience the comforts of home, she considers it a blessing.

The last stop was at Gems Gallery, which according to their website is the “world’s biggest jewelry store”.  It was a pretty interesting place.  I’d never seen so many shiny things I can’t afford in one go…but they truly are very pretty (albeit some of the pieces bordered on “too much”).  After some welcome drinks, we were ushered into a small theater where a short film was shown about Thailand being known for their sapphires and rubies.  After the 15 minute film, you’ll be taken into another room where you’ll be shown how a raw stone is turned into something you’ll readily see on the red carpet at a Hollywood event.  Think of it as a small assembly line for jewelry.

Now, Ava and I are also fans of Kpop and we were delighted at the news that one of the groups we liked, Super Junior were also in town for their Super Show 4 tour.  We didn’t buy tickets online so we decided to take our chances and see if we could score some at the Impact Arena.

We finally made it!

It was way past noon, the weather was extremely hot and we were terribly hungry.  We saw a McDonald’s but it was still closed so we just took pictures of Thailand’s Ronald McDonald doing a gesture one does when greeting someone. We ended up eating KFC instead.

There were fan booths and sponsor booths.  Here’s Ava posing with characters from a local soft drink commercial.

This is probably the closest we’ll ever get to the boys…

Ava with Cardboard Kyu

Me with Cardboard Siwon & Donghae

While waiting for the show we hung out at the airconditioned food court and tried this.  I’m not sure what it’s called but it’s got crushed ice, syrup and gelatin.

We enjoyed the show (which lasted for about 4 hours) and luckily got a cab that agreed to take us back to the hotel.  The sad part was that the driver was asking for 600 THB which, if converted to pesos would make it THE.MOST.EXPENSIVE.CAB.RIDE.I.EVER.TOOK.  But it was late, we were tired and the hotel was very far…oh well…  It had been a long and eventful day but we’ll only get a few hours sleep (just 2 actually) before we had to be up and ready again for Day 3!

 

Me In Macau! June 30, 2010

Filed under: family affair,fangirl forever,tales,travels — fizzywoohoo @ 1:20 pm
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As expected, I packed my stuff for my first trip abroad 2 days before my flight.  Needless to say, on the morning of our trip, I was inserting last minute things into my bag.  I brought 1 suitcase and 1 backpack…which really didn’t have much inside it because I had already planned it to be my “pasalubong bag.”

Tito Dong drove us to the airport and we left the car at the T2 parking lot.  Though we’d been warned about how ridiculously expensive airport food would be, it wasn’t enough to stop us from eating once inside PAL Terminal 2.

I ate.  I waited.  I checked my facebook.  I waited.  I started reading my book.  And I waited.  At last it was boarding time…here we go…

DAY 1 – ARRIVAL

Ah, the joys of flying…for my first international trip, I had the pleasure of sitting in front of a noisy 4 year old…with her equally noisy mother.  Thank God it was only a 2 hour flight!

The flight arrived at around 2:30pm (no time difference between Manila & Macau) and as the scenery of Macau moved past the airplane window IT has finally sunk in: “Holy sh!t, I’m actually in a totally different country!”  We lined up at immigration (or was it customs?) and I took a quick shot of it using my camera phone…2 seconds later I noticed the sign, “NO PICTURE TAKING ALLOWED”.  Oops…eager beaver kasi…

We found our coaster and another OMG moment hits, “Holy sh!t, we have the entire coaster all to ourselves!”  Of course, I kept looking out the window the entire time.  We arrived at Hotel Emperor about 20 minutes later and…my first impression of the place was, “Not bad.”  It’s only a 3 star hotel but as long as there’s a decent bed & bath & a tv, that’ll work for me!  The only complaints I can think of were: the carpets were full of stains and the room smelled like cigarettes.

The "see-through" bathroom...actually, there's a shade that you pull down...

The hotel’s neighborhood looks like a safer & cleaner Binondo or chi-town…with it’s narrow streets and tiny shops with huge lighted signages selling everything and anything from gadgets, fruits, clothing, money changers and of course, Chinese food & medicine—complete with animal bones & skins you’re pretty sure are on the endangered species list.   Two shops made me laugh: 1)  is the local 7-11, a sign of the familiar and 2) the friendly neighborhood “sex shop”.  I could’ve sworn I even saw a pimp showing pictures of his girls to a prospective customer!  I wanted to take a photo of the shop…but CCTVs were all around and it felt like a God-like voice would suddenly call out and say, “What do you think you’re doing?!” if I did it.

We spent our first afternoon walking around as far as our feet could take us.  There wasn’t much going on since it was a Sunday.  I did have my first pinoy encounter (and celebrity sighting!) though…Kempee De Leon was doing an Independence Day show with Giselle Sanchez (though I didn’t see her) for the OFWs.

What were my first impressions of Macau as we walked her streets?  It looked normal—I don’t mean that in a bad way of course.  The buildings were regular looking, the streets super neat.  It’s how I would picture Manila actually…if only Manila were a little more disciplined.  From our island, (the country has 3—joined together by these amazingly long bridges) the only buildings you’ll ogle at apart from the Macau Tower are the casinos.

 

The Grand Lisboa Hotel & Casino

Wynn Hotel & Casino

We walked some more & come 6pm found a food court inside a commercial arcade.  Tito was already hungry so we decided to give it a try.  It looks like your ordinary food court here in Manila.  I would’ve wanted to try out something different…but then I settled for the tried and tested noodles!

DAY 2 – DAY TOUR

We got picked up by our tour bus at around 9:30am.  Our Chinese tour guide’s name was Roger (“ROH-JHAH”)—I highly doubt that’s the name written on his birth certificate hehe.  We picked up the next set of tourists at a nearby hotel and as they were climbing up (2 women, 1 teenager, 1 child) the bus, I heard the dude sitting behind me say, “PILIPIN” and I noticed that indeed pinoys were climbing aboard.  I never realized that foreigners can easily pinpoint us readily—the way we can readily say, “African American” or “Indian” or “Japanese” when we see foreigners here.  I can’t decide if that’s a good or bad thing.

 

Our tour bus

That is our super friendly tour guide "Roh-Jhah!"

Our first stop was at Fisherman’s Wharf, followed by the oldest bakery in Macau.  Samples are made available for the customers which was a pretty cool thing because you can easily pick out the food you want to buy.  I spent HKD100 in this shop—bought 4 boxes of sweet yam as pasalubong—yes, sweet yam…a fancier way of saying “hopia”.

After the bakery, we headed for the A-Ma Temple, which is the oldest temple in Macau.  Near the temple is a river and across it is another piece of land with mountains…I was shocked to find out that that was already fricking China!  Pretty cool huh?

See those mountains? That's already China!

Then it was off to the Macau Tower.  Apparently there is a fee if you want to go up the observation deck—they have two: the 61st floor, where the bungee jumps, mast climbs, and sky walks happen and the 58th floor, where you can watch the jumpers and where the glass floors are.  I have to tell you—those glass floors look pretty harmless..at first..but boy did they scare the cr@p outta me when I tried to walk across it!  Obviously it’s pretty safe…it’s just that you feel like your foot is stepping on thin air…plus it doesn’t help that you can see all the way down to the bottom!  Another pinoy sighting at the Macau Tower was the Security Head at the 61st floor.

It was now time for lunch and we headed to a nearby hotel for some food & rest.  Check this out…carbo loading galore!  That’s fish fillet on the top left, pasta on the right and yummy, yummy fried rice on the bottom.  That’s soup in my cup…”Russian style”…whatever that means.  I tried out their dessert “Creamy Custard”…only to find out that it’s not so creamy and is only a poor imitation of our leche flan.

After a good meal it was back on the bus and off to the Ruins of St. Paul, another famous tourist spot.  The original cathedral was built in the 17th century and after going through several wars & burnings, only the façade remains.   As our bus was making its way towards the place, I was looking at the shops from my window…and was suddenly surprised to read several “Kabayan, mura dito!” signs!  One of the tinderas even noticed that I understood her sign and gave me a friendly wave!

We had an hour to tour this place and I immediately thought of finding my pasalubongs for home.  As I walked the tiny cobbled streets—which reminded me of both Europe and Baguio at the same time—something caught my attention…”Oooh!  Magnets!”  I’ve finally found a souvenir shop.  I was already checking out the different designs displayed on the door when a lady suddenly tells me, “Pili ka lang ate.”  I laughed because here is yet another pinoy encounter!  Truly there was no place in the world where you can’t find a pinoy!  I made my purchases and thanked the owner (who has lived there for 20 years) and as I was making my way out the shop, she runs to me and thanks me while handing over “3 lucky poker chips, darling!”.  It’s only a tourist knick-knack but I appreciated the gesture nonetheless.

The bus brought us back to the hotel & after a short rest, Tito & I walked around the neighborhood again.  He liked looking at the cameras being sold and found a Canon that he liked.  In Manila, it’s priced at PHP95,000 while there it was in Macau going for only PHP80,000.  He didn’t buy it though despite being tempted.

We also found THE.ONLY.EFFING.MALL. on our island.  It was nice looking…parang Rustan’s.  I tried venturing on my own while Tito stayed on the Tech/Appliance Floor.  Lakas ng loob ko kasi if there’s one place I would feel safe & sure & not get lost, it’s the mall.  I looked around the grocery and the food court and as I was making my way down the escalator, I heard the dude behind me say, “PILIPIN”..again!  Jesus, I immediately did a mental check on how I looked.  Maayos naman suot ko.  My hair is fixed.  Are they talking about me?  Why are they talking about me?!  Mukha ba akong…DH?!  Ay naku, paranoid ako ng galore galore!  Anyway, we ended our day by passing by 7-11 and buying instant noodles and coke for dinner.  Yum!

 

The ONE AND ONLY mall...literally!

Pretty, pretty lights!

DAY 3 – FREE DAY

Tuesday rolls around and I wasn’t even sure if we were going to Hong Kong that day.  Eventually, Tito decided on seeing The Venetian—which is one of the most popular casinos in Macau.  We had to take a cab to the Sands Hotel (note: OMG!  Their cab drivers actually give you change…even if it’s coins!) and from there we take the shuttle bus to The Venetian.  I thought this was pretty cool because the casinos/hotels actually make so much money that they can afford to shuttle people around for free!

 

Our fancy ride courtesy of The Venetian

I was excited to see this place…not only do they have a shopping center (Malling! Glorious mallling!) but it was also the place where some scenes from Boys Over Flowers were shot!  We entered the place and wow…please note that I am a mallrat and nice malling places always make me go “wow.”  Have I mentioned that you can take gondola rides inside that place?  Complete with Gondoliers singing you Italian love songs!

 

It felt like Hogwart's Great Hall...that sky is fake!

I started getting trigger happy with my camera and started taking pictures of the places where I knew BOF was shot haha!  We took our lunch at McDonald’s and my sausage mcmuffin with egg meal cost me about PHP200!  Can you believe that?  I had a pretty fun time in this place—again, mostly because of the BOF connection…but honestly, it really was a beautiful place.

 

*squee* The bridge where Jun Pyo broke up with Jan Di!

The fancy ladies room

My P200 McDonald's meal! Honestly, it tastes the same lang.

DAY 4 – GOING HOME

All too soon Wednesday arrives and it was time to head for home.  We were brought again to the airport by our coaster driver from Sunday and as I was watching Macau move past my window I suddenly thought, “It would be great to come back here…or possibly even live here…dang it, if only they had more malls!” hahaha

Checking in our stuff, I had my last pinoy encounter of the trip—one of the airport personnel was yes, pinoy and he said he used to work for Philippine Airlines and has been living in Macau for 7 years.  And then there was…the cute Mr. Wong, station manager for PAL.  He’s a Chinese dude with dark Weezer type glasses who seems like he just stepped out of a Korean drama.  I had moments like that where in my head I’d randomly point at guys and say, “Koreanovela!” or “Boyband!”—grouping cute guys on where I think they’d fit best.  I tried taking a peek at his ID but couldn’t see his first name, only his last.  So, a shout out goes to the cute Mr. Wong!

As I was going through Security, because nobody called my attention, I went through the metal detector with all my jewelry and belt in tact!  Shempre tumunog ako and they made me stand on a box so that they could wand me.  Hehehe…ooops! Uuwi na nga lang…

One of the things I told myself I wasn’t going to buy were the egg tarts for the simple reason that I’ve already tasted those here in Manila (Lord Stow’s in MOA).  As I was waiting in the departure area, and realizing that I haven’t had lunch yet (it was already 3pm), I noticed the nearby dining area.  Oh what the heck, I bought the egg tarts as a last hurrah…the 3 pieces cost about PHP180.  One piece I ate, the other I gave to Tito and the other I tucked away in my backpack and brought home to manila.

I had the window seat next to the emergency exit on the flight back.  I never knew I’m required by law to read the emergency manual when sitting next to the emergency exit…wow, i-pressure daw ba!

The flight was smooth & easy and we even arrived 5 minutes ahead of schedule.  All too soon we were getting our things and making our way back to the car.  That was an awesome first trip abroad.  Thanks to my tito and thanks to you too Universe!  So, where to next? =)

note: Complete photos will be posted on my facebook and multiply.  Please come and see them. =)

 

Macau on my mind June 2, 2010

Filed under: family affair,thoughts,travels — fizzywoohoo @ 12:34 pm
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I’ve never been anywhere.  Promise!  Perhaps the farthest I’ve traveled by land is Baguio and the farthest by plane is Bacolod in Negros Occidental—that’s farther than Boracay & Iloilo, which I’ve both been to as well.

My Tito Dong has been bugging me to get a passport for years!  I used to work for an airline company but the only time I attempted to get a passport was when I resigned after 11 years!  He initially wanted to take me to Thailand 2 years ago but instead he took my sister.  This year is my year though.  After getting my passport last year, Tito Dong is taking me to Macau!

 

It's so tiny, I can't even see it

Now, I’ve recently been blessed with internet access here at work.  This morning, whilst not busy with anything (As if! My internet is always open even when I’m busy!), I decided to look up Macau.  Here’s what I found out courtesy of www.macau.com:

  • Macau consists of the Macau Peninsula, the islands of Taipa & Coloane—and Cotai, the reclaimed land that now connects the 2 islands.
  • Official languages are Portuguese and Chinese with Cantonese being the most widely spoken.  Many people though speak English and Mandarin.
  • Population: 525,500 – Wow! How small! Manila is even larger!

I’ve also checked out some of the things I should eat, see & do…

EAT

  • Cantonese noodles

Always panalo ang noodles!

  • Portuguese egg tarts

But I've already tasted Lord Stow's at MOA!

  • Almond cookies

Looks yummy no?

  • Pork chop in a bun

What, no rice?!

SEE

  • St. Paul’s Ruins

  • Macau Tower

  • A-Ma Temple

DO

  • Gondola Ride – A taste of Europe!  Plus, they did shoot gondola scenes in Boys Over Flowers! (Remember when Jun Pyo cruelly broke up with Jan Di? Waaah!)

Of course I had to get a photo from Boys Over Flowers!

  • Macau Tower – I can be a Skywalker! (“Luke, I am your father!”)

That'll be me soon!

  • Bungee Jump from the 61st floor of the Macau Tower – Ok, I seriously considered this one…however when I found out how much it cost…good lord!  Di pa ako tumatalon eh hihimatayin na ata ako!  Converted to pesos it’s a whopping P10, 059! I don’t think I’ll even spend that much for shopping and souvenirs!

Hay, I’m such an eager beaver!  I’ve been saving up since the start of the year but hopefully, I wouldn’t spend more than what’s necessary.  Hay, but I’m also THE. WORST. FIRST. TIME. TRAVELLER. EVER.   I bought all sorts of things for my first international trip—a passport holder from Fully Booked, a new pair of comfy shoes from SM, a new pair of jeans from M & S (on sale!), a new kikay travel kit, a new shirt…and I’ll probably buy a new toothbrush too…but do you know the one thing I should’ve bought but didn’t?! AN EFFING SUITCASE! Duh! Of all the things I didn’t buy, it’s that one! Hey, you can’t say I didn’t try though because I really did. Well, sort of.  Grabe, I didn’t know those things cost a lot!  The cheapest & prettiest (may ganun?) that I could find in SM was a purple & pink Delsey worth P6K.  No BS…it ‘s really pretty!  I’m actually partial to red but the cheapest red one I could find was a Samsonite worth P9K..and it’s not even THAT pretty…talagang kailangang pretty sha no?  I could easily swipe it…but I’m being a good girl so I’ve resisted the temptation to do so.  Perhaps I’ll save the new luggage for my next trip.  For now, I might use Tito Boy’s suitcase (he’s the traveler of the family) or Sumi’s…who has kindly offered hers.

Ok, ok.  I haven’t even left…there’s still 2 weeks to go…I still have to ask permission & file for vl and I’m already rambling.  I’m just really excited and happy.  I’m envisioning this as my first of many trips to see the world!  Of course, the goal for the future is to set foot on the motherland—Europe…particularly England!  But until then, I’ve got Macau on my mind!

Watch out world, here I come!