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...

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,...

February Challenge: Festive

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...

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. 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...

January Blog Challenge: Edge

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

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. 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,...

January Blog Challenge: Transmogrify 

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work. Our blog challenge was inspired by this blog post. Look closely. Can you spot the character from our childhood fairy tales? If you're lucky, you might see it transform into a prince. When I was little, my favorite stories were Beauty and the Beast, The Frog Prince, and the Princess and the Pea. I've always been fascinated by the idea...

January Blog Challenge: Local

This post is my entry to a blog challenge at work. Our blog challenge was inspired by this blog post. What's the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the word "local"? For some reason, I think of an outrigger boat in the sea, with a fisherman balancing on the far end of the boat, preparing to cast his nets. I imagine the fisherman's wife waiting for him on the shore,...

Why Philippines

I think we can all agree that 2016 is the worst year of the decade yet. In the Philippines, we just had ten stressful months where friendships and loyalties were tested. Conversations on social media felt a lot like a GE class where you had to listen to petty arguments by your know-it-all classmate, and watch your more intelligent peers fail to get through to him. (It still feels that...

 My Travel Bucket List

Last month, I started reading a terrific book: Dave Eggers' You Shall Know Our Velocity! The main characters decided to travel the world in a week to cope with the death of a dear friend. While I don't have the money to waste on an impromptu trip to North Africa and the Balkans, I'm intrigued by the idea of getting on a flight to leave everyone I know behind and discover new worlds as...