Thursday, December 26, 2013

[Throwback Thursday 12.26.2013] Our first tree

Nearly a year after My Bibe and I moved in together, we got our first tree for Christmas 2006. As with practically everyone else in the Philippines, it was a plastic tree. In this part of the world, not everyone can afford, or would choose to have, a real pine tree since it would have to be imported from halfway around the world, not to mention it would be very costly.

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Our lowly tree, squeezed in between the TV and the bookshelf.

Both of us were in agreement that we didn't want a small tree. Maybe a 5-foot one would do, we thought. However, we were faced with a dilemma in that space was a bit of a problem in our new apartment. Luckily we found a slim-fit tree. Yes, it's not just pants and shirts; Christmas trees come in slim-fit designs, too.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Good old-fashioned circus entertainment at 'MagiKaria'

I was fortunate to have been invited to the gala performance of Circus Vargas' Magikaria, A Fantastical Magical Experience last Dec. 23. A two-hour showcase of some good old-fashioned circus entertainment, it was loaded with acrobats, music, clowns, illusions, and more.

Prepping up the contraption for that classic magician's assistant's disappearing and reappearing act.

It was a rather small setup, with several rows of monoblock chairs flanking all three sides of the stage. It may not have been the most ideal seating arrangement but it was well-suited to the show's intimate and interactive premise. Everyone in the audience can very well see what's happening onstage at any given time.

The show opened in a surprisingly low-key manner with just a single performer who immediately surveyed the audience for all sorts of stuff that he could balance on his chin. From the simplest objects like a baseball cap, he sure was able to hold the audience's attention by quickly progressing to bolder things like a shopping cart and a ladder--to much applause of course! A musical number soon followed.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

[Throwback Thursday 12.19.2013] HHWW

Because it's the season, I'm looking back at the many Christmas parties I've attended in the past. This one here is from 2004 with my colleagues from Internal Audit, which I've officially christened as "HHWW." Not at all meaning "holding hands while walking," HHWW stood for "Hats, Headdresses, Wigs & Whatever." In other words, it was a hat party where wigs and other head gear were allowed.

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Don't I look like Snape here? But with glasses?

It wasn't anything big; just a simple gathering with food, a small program, gift-giving, and some raffle prizes. We were only around twenty then after all. At the time people in our department were notorious for not wanting to dress up or anything for Christmas parties and were content with the usual jeans and shirt. So it was nice how I and the rest of the organizing committee were able to persuade everyone to dress up somehow. Small steps, I thought.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Circus Vargas brings "MagiKaria!" to Manila

The magic of Christmas will be even more captivating – and jaw-dropping – with the arrival in Manila of the internationally acclaimed Circus Vargas troupe, one of the world’s biggest traveling circuses.

Showcasing gravity-defying flights, flashy costumes, fun dance routines, and other deliriously delightful antics, Circus Vargas will be bringing to the country its most exciting production dubbed as “MagiKaria, A Fantastical Magical Experience.” 

Circus Vargas Magikaria Poster TPIrsz

This amazing production will feature the astonishing athleticism, physical beauty and acrobatic prowess of the men, women and children of the circus, promising to deliver the same immense joy and excitement already experienced by millions of people worldwide.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

[Throwback Thursday 12.12.2013] Moving out

Just moved in to a new place we're calling home. While there is, of course, excitement, moving out entails lots of work and causes lots of stress. This was very much the same case five years ago when we first moved out of an old apartment and into a new one--as a couple. And boy did we buy a lot of boxes!

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Just some of the boxes and other stuff ready for the big move in September 2008.

Back then we only had one cat, Kwittie Boy, who was ever curious with all the packing and all the chaos leading up to the big day. (This time we moved four cats with us.)

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Kwittie Boy whispering to me about not doing anything stupid. "Do you see this knife?" he said.

Friday, December 6, 2013

A different kind of donut in Gavino's Japanese Donuts

One of the booths at this year's Blogapalooza was from Gavino's Japanese Donuts. Excited, I was instantly reminded of my first taste of Gavino's back in October, when I chanced upon their booth at Robinsons Galleria in Ortigas. I got a dozen and even asked a colleague to bring me more that same day.

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Tastes as good as it looks.

Interestingly, Gavino's is a Filipino brand. If you're wondering where's the Japanese in all of this, it's in the donuts' consistency. Unlike your usual fried variety, these are mochi donuts that have a chewy consistency bursting with seriously gooey filling. Mmmmm was all I could say when I had my first bite.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

[Throwback Thursday 12.05.2013] Our second cat Foreman arrives

It was around September 2008 and we were about to move into a new apartment. My Bibe, who at the time was into online shopping on Multiply, came across something rather different from what she normally checks out on the now-defunct site. It was a kitten, a black one to be exact. He was up for adoption, hence, the "ad posting," which described him as a "quiet cat."

It hasn't even been two years since we got our first cat Kwittie Boy and I wasn't prepared for another one. My Bibe wanted him and I looked at each photo closely, looking for signs of his behavior or something that would support my hesitation. Secretly, though, the thought of having an all-white fluffy cat (that's Kwittie Boy) and an all-black shorthair seemed exciting to me. But after some discussion between us and while My Bibe checked out the Multiply post about this kitty almost everyday, we decided to adopt him.

The cat formerly known as Snowflake, here with his former mom Rej.

Then on October 1 we met up with this couple, Oneal and Rej (now happily married), at a Starbucks in Makati. They drove us home with our little black baby inside his pet carrier. They called him "Snowflake" but because of our love for House (the TV series) back then, we re-christened him "Foreman."

Monday, December 2, 2013

When love birds make love

I mentioned a few months ago in my review of Acuaverde Beach Resort in Laiya that they've built their restaurant around two trees where they've also set up two mini aviaries housing a bunch of love birds. And then I saw this:


I already noticed these two behaving differently, with the green guy seemingly pursuing the yellow one relentlessly. So this is how love birds make love, complete with pecking and all.
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