Category: Personal

March Blog Challenge

For my last entry to our ongoing blog challenge at the office, I chose to post a photo collage rather than a photo essay (sorry, Jonjon!). These are my co-workers from my previous job with whom I’ve spent more than two years. I have nothing but good things to say about these folks. In fact, I have every reason to be thankful that I had the opportunity to work (and have fun) with each of them. My first leadership role would not have been as rewarding if I did not have these awesome, talented folks on my team.

photo collage

From the bottom of my heart, thanks, guys! 🙂

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work.

February Blog Challenge: Love

Love is when you can rest easy even when you’re out in a scary world filled with big people. It’s an all-consuming courage that will empower you to soldier on and brave even bigger battles in life even when you want nothing more than to retreat to your tiny comfort zone. To love is to be courageous and bold, even when everything in the world tells you there’s no reason to be.

Do you agree? What’s your definition of love?

cats on a PNR station

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work.

February Challenge: Color

When I was little, I read somewhere that the more colorful the food, the healthier it is. I think that holds true for hot pots as well: the more colorful it gets, the yummier it is haha. I’ve always been a fan of hot pots and what we call in the Philippines sabaw (“soup”) dishes, especially when I get to put all the things I love in the pot: mushrooms, Chinese cabbage, lettuce, onions, shrimp, squid, lentils and more mushrooms.

seafood hotpot

This was my lunch when I went to Alishan National Forest Recreation Area 阿里山國家風景區 in Chiayi County 嘉義縣, Taiwan 中華民國. I have no idea what we ordered (was it seafood hot pot?), but it was delicious and filling.

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work.

February Challenge: Festive

Makati walkway

When I was 16 years old, I almost had an emotional breakdown at this spot. That was more than 10 years ago. I remember being overwhelmed by everything: the men’s suits and their wrinkled ties, the women’s black pencil skirts and modest heels; the number of people mindlessly rambling along, following the rhythm of the beating cold heart of the city. I couldn’t handle how gray everything was; everyone had blank expressions. I thought I was in a Philip K. Dick novel. I broke out in a cold sweat. I had to pause and breathe deeply before I could move along and rejoin the crowd.

12 years later, somebody must have had the same experience, so they decided to decorate this walkway with something that would trick the passers-by into thinking that this is a fun place. That is the only explanation I can think of for those mini-banderitas or flaglet-like installations in this picture.

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work.

February Blog Challenge: Red

The first thing that comes to mind when I hear the word “red” is bricks. I’m drawn to structures and buildings made with red bricks for some reason. I think next to wood, it’s the prettiest material to use in a building.

Church in Liliw

This is me with my roommates from college, Leslie and Grace, posing for a photo in front of the church in Liliw, Laguna. I think next to having a great sister, having good girl friends is the best a woman could wish for. 🙂

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work.

January Blog Challenge: Edge

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work. Our blog challenge was inspired by this blog post.

Buscalan road

This afternoon, as we headed back to the road leading to Bontoc from Buscalan, Kalinga, we found that the road damaged by the landslide from December was still under repair. There were no trails or pathways yet, so our guide picked up a hoe and dug small holes where we can put our foot. 

We scaled the side of the hill to get to the road, stepping on tiny grooves marked by our guide. I slipped and almost fell down the cliff — luckily, our guide grabbed my arm in time. Never underestimate the strength of Igorots, especially those from the Butbut tribe!

January Blog Challenge: Tiny

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work. Our blog challenge was inspired by this blog post. The photo below was taken by my brother, Paolo Narvas.

tiny dragonfly

When I was a kid, I did not like playing with insects. In fact, I was always looking for ways to torture insects. Raised in the city, I thought all insects were meant to be crushed, sprayed on with Baigon, flushed away, swatted at, and trapped with a sticky sheet of fly paper.

My grandmother even encouraged me to set a trap to lure what we called flying ants away from our light bulb. On humid summer nights, I would fill a shallow aluminum basin with water, which I placed directly under the light bulb. The dancing ripples attracted the winged insects, and when they land on the water, they eventually get stuck there and drown. It was fun to watch.

Once, when I was spending the weekend at my grandmother’s house in Laguna, my father caught a large mariposa. I wanted to keep it, but I didn’t want to touch it as it was common knowledge among schoolchildren that butterfly dust will make one blind.

To keep the mariposa alive, my father put it in a plastic bag and punched small holes in it so that it could breathe. (Do butterflies breathe? How do they do it?) He placed it above my bed so I could admire it before I drifted off to sleep. Did I enjoy watching the beautiful butterfly? No, I didn’t. I couldn’t sleep as I watched it squirm and crawl, looking for a way out. It was pathetic.