Friday, September 30, 2011 | By: Jenggai

Typhoon trauma

Just a few days after Typhoon Pedring left the country, another typhoon, Typhoon Quiel, is expected this weekend. I hope this one will not be as intense and destructive like Pedring as most of the affected areas have not yet recovered from Pedring's wrath.

Being an Ondoy survivor, it always scares me whenever we experience strong typhoons. The flood brought about by Ondoy last September 26, 2009 is one unforgettable experience for me. I had the biggest scare of my life that day. My husband left a little after lunch that day to try to help his nephew and niece who were stranded also because of the flood in Cainta. It never crossed our mind that we, too, will experience flood that day. Even though we only live a few blocks away from the Marikina River, we never experienced flood in our area.

We were supposed to celebrate my mother-in-law's birthday so Andrei's cousins were with us at my in-laws' house. We were watching the people outside when we noticed the brown water on the street quickly rising. In just a matter of minutes, the water was waist deep inside the house (chest deep on the street outside). I stayed with the kids at the second floor of the house while my in-laws carried the appliances and furniture from the first floor to the second floor.

I was able to talk to my mom on the cell phone before the signal went off. My parents house is just two streets away from my in-laws. She and my other siblings tried to grab whatever they could save but most of the things were already submerged in muddy waters. Our relatives who are living just a few meters from the Marikina River literally swam to our house for shelter. They weren't able to bring anything, even clothes and food because the water rose too quickly that they had to swim their way out of their house. My mother told me that my dad and my youngest sister were not home and she could not contact them.

Not knowing where your loved ones during times like that is really scary. Luckily, all three of them were safe. My dad climbed on the roof of one house and stayed there overnight. My husband were able to swim to one of his relative's house to seek shelter and my sister was able to spend the night at our relative's house which is a few kilometers from her school. Amidst the fear I felt that day, I was really, really thankful that all my loved ones are still with me now. God is really good. He answers prayers.

Here are some pictures of our Ondoy experience.

The morning after.

See the muddy water mark? Half of the car was submerged in water. My dad parked the car a few meters away from the fence but the water carried the car to the fence which left an ugly dent in the bumper.

Who wouldn't be traumatized by this experience? This kind of calamity is preventable if only people learned to take care of the environment earlier. Why do we need this kind of awakening experience to learn? We have options. We do not have to learn things the hard way.
Thursday, September 29, 2011 | By: Jenggai

Back to basics

I wasn’t able to go to work last Tuesday due to Typhoon Pedring. I texted my boss before 8:00 am that morning to ask if work for that day is suspend. He replied that it’s not though I could file a leave upon my return if I couldn’t make it. I only have five remaining service incentive leaves so I really wanted to go to work because I am saving my SILs for Andrei’s birthday and for my hubby’s arrival in November. However, when I looked out the window, I saw the fierce wind and rain. I know I could get through the rain, but how about the wind? My three-fold umbrella could not stand that wind! And so, as much as I wanted to leave the house, I stayed home.

As early as 8:00 am, electricity had been cut off. That means no TV for Andrei and no internet surfing for me. Cell phone signal is not that good also so I couldn’t use mobile surfing as well. After lunch, I took Andrei to our room for his afternoon siesta. Although it was cold and rainy, Andrei is still sweaty. Good thing I was able to recharge the battery of his rechargeable fan/light. I was able to charge my laptop the night before so Andrei was able to watch Thomas and Friends from my laptop before going to sleep.

With no electricity and with my laptop battery drained, I found myself lying on the bed and staring at the ceiling. I can’t help recalling the days when the country had to endure the scheduled brownouts everyday. I was in high school back then and I remember doing my assignments beside our emergency lamp or candle and listening to my battery operated pocket radio. It was like being back to basics. And on weekends, me and my cousins would play hide and seek under the moonlight or ask our lola or tita for ghost tales. There were even days when we felt disappointed that the electricity was back on because we know that it was time to go back home. 

Life was simple back then. No cell phone, no laptops and computers. How lucky are the kids these days! But I am still thankful that I was able to experience such basic life as it made me appreciate the things I have today.
Tuesday, September 27, 2011 | By: Jenggai

Sunshine Award

Thank you Michi and Mommy Jo for giving me my very first award! My apologies though for the late posting =)

The rules:

1. Thank the person who gave you this award and write a post about it.
2. Answer the following questions.
3. Pass it on to ten fabulous bloggers and send them a message to let them know.

Favourite Colour: purple, pink, blue 
Favourite Animal: fish
Favourite Number: 8
Favourite Drink: water =)
Facebook or Twitter: Facebook
Your passion: family
Giving or getting presents: both
Favourite pattern: stripes
Favourite day: Saturday
Favourite flowers: roses, tulips

I would like to pass this award to:

Saturday, September 24, 2011 | By: Jenggai

Day 4 - HK-Macau

August 22, 2011 - Victoria Peak and Madame Tussauds Wax Museum

Day 4 is Ocean Park OR Victoria Peak and Madame Tussauds Wax Museum. Five out of the nine people in our group are first timers in Hong Kong so it is but natural that they would choose to go to Ocean Park. I am one of the five but I chose to go with the other group to Victoria Peak and Madame Tussauds Wax Museum. Not that I do not want to go to Ocean Park but I just couldn't stand to spend another day under the scorching heat of the sun. I could go back to HK and Ocean Park in another time... definitely in a much better HK weather.

And so we headed off to the Peak Tram station to ride the Peak Tram that will take us to Victoria Peak. One way ticket costs HK$ 28.

the steep tracks
view of HK from the Peak Tram

We bought tickets to the wax museum from Dragon Hostel at a discounted price of HK$ 140. Original price is HK$ 160.

Here are some pictures taken inside the museum.

Robert Pattinson aka Edward Cullen of Twilight

The Royal Family

Thanks Spidey for saving me!


Johnny Depp aka Capt Jack Sparrow

Marilyn Monroe (I think I look more like Annie here, LOL)

Sharing the stage with Madonna

Gaga fever!


We did a bit of last minute shopping after lunch.

Ooops! No, I didn't shop for any LV item. Just took a picture outside the store hehe!

We then headed back to Macau for our 10pm flight back home to Manila. 
Back to reality =(
Thursday, September 22, 2011 | By: Jenggai

Day 3, Part 2 - Hong Kong

August 21, 2011 - Disneyland

A leisure trip to Hong Kong is not complete without a visit to the famous Disneyland. Ever since this trip was booked, I've been looking forward to my close encounter with Mickey Mouse and the whole gang and of course to see the attractions and experience the magic of Disneyland.

After spending our morning at Ngong Ping Village, we rode the train at Tung Chung station and got off at Sunny Bay station where the Disneyland Resort Line is located. We then rode the Disneyland-inspired train to the resort. From the outside look of the train to the the blue cushioned seats, Mickey Mouse hand rails and Disney characters bronze figures in glass cases, you can tell that this is not your ordinary train! You get your first feel of Disneyland on this train.

And of course, I wouldn't pass the chance to have my pictures taken at this famous resort!

The parade has just started when we arrived. Here are some pictures of the floats.

Most of the members of the marching band are Pinoys!

Just look at this adorable Mickey Mouse waffle.

Meet and greet the characters!

Just like a little girl, I was truly amazed of the castle.

The castle at day time

The castle at night

Our day at Disneyland was wrapped up with spectacular fireworks which left us all in awe.

We truly enjoyed our visit to Disneyland (well, except for the scorching heat). I will definitely go back (if time and budget permit). It goes to show that Disneyland is not just for the young people but also for the young at hearts to enjoy.
Monday, September 19, 2011 | By: Jenggai

Day 3, Part 1 - Hong Kong

August 21, 2011 - Ngong Ping 360 cable car and Tian Tan Buddha Statue (Giant Buddha)

We bought our ticket for the two-way Ngong Ping 360 cable car ride at Dragon Hostel at a discounted price of HK$ 98. Original price is HK$ 115.

The  Tian Tan Buddha Statue or Giant Buddha is situated in Lantau Island so we had to ride the cable car to cross Tung Chung Bay. The 25-minute (5.7 km) ride gives you a spectacular view of Tung Chung Bay, the mountains of Lantau Island and Airport Island.

cable car ride

mountains of Lantau Island

Hong Kong International Airport

If you are planning to visit the island, make sure that you arrive at the cable car terminal early in the morning to avoid the long lines. Ngong Ping Village has a several shops where you can buy souvenir items as well as restaurants. I like the laid back atmosphere of the shops.

As we only have limited time, we only spent a few hours taking pictures in Lantau Island to head on to our next destination.

You have to climb the 268 steps to get a close encounter with the Giant Buddha. However, you have to pay a separate admission fee.

The view from the cable car and visit to Lantau Island give you a refreshing feeling after going through the hustle and bustle of the busy streets of the city.