Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Thinking of Tingloy

   Pictures of my trip to Tingloy have been surfacing on my FB Memories. Yeah it was in this same month last year. 
    I realized I didn't write about it in this blog. Probably because I got busy with graphic work that usually piles up during the last quarter of the year. 
Well...  look who's got plenty of time now haha!

   Looking back at the pictures just makes me miss what I believe is one of the happiest beach vacations of my life haha! Looking at them also frustrates me. Not being able to go to the beach is just one of the saddest things about 2020. 

    Well, we're just over 2 months from 2021. Maybe we can finally get a dose of vitamin sea this summer, yes?

Boat ride from Talaga Port.
Arrival at Tingloy Port.

          So, let me tell you more about Tingloy. It is a municipality in the island of Marikaban in Batangas. You get there from ports in Mabini (Anilao Port or Talaga Port). Tingloy is known for Masasa Beach with her light beige sand and crystal blue waters... under which sea turtles are usually seen snooping around for food.

Tricycle ride to the other side of the island.
First glimpse of the South coast.

   Tingloy Port is at the North side of the island while Masasa beach is at South. So to get there you take a  2.5 km bumpy uphill and downhill tricycle ride. 

    The coastal town of San Jose, where Masasa Beach is located, is actually underdeveloped and that contributes to its unspoilt charm. Electricity is only available in the daytime. There are no noisy bars and restaurants or souvenir shops. Just sari-sari stores. Not even a carinderia. Transient houses are mostly huts or cottages and it's rare that you will find an air-conditioned room. If these details takes you aback well Masasa isn't for you haha! Go to Puerto Galera or Boracay instead. Tingloy is perfect for those who like to commune with nature and momentarily enjoy the rural life.

    I stayed at the Lagoon Bay transient house where you can sleep in one of their camping tents for only Php 300 a night. Their nice little service boat took me there real quick. It is a kilometer away from Masasa Beach but still along the coast. The shoreline in this area is rocky and it has it's own appeal. This is where u can go pick up shells and coral fragments for souvenir.

  But really I didn't mind walking a kilometer to get to Masasa Beach because of the scenic seaside views and interesting rock formations I saw along the way. 

Sunday, October 18, 2020

El Bohemio at the Art Sector Gallery
and Chimney Cafe

     It feels great to go riding outside the metro again! Never felt so alive in months! Haha! Haven't rode my bike to far places since the start of the Community Quarantine in March. Some of my rider friends were able to go riding after the GCQ (General Community Quarantine) that started in May. But I  guess I was too lazy to join any trips. Then came the rainy season - more laziness haha!

Met up with friends at KRB.
With Shah and her new XTZ!

Just arrived! 

    Anyway, yeah, it's good to see some of my rider friends again. I was invited to a birthday celebration last October 2nd in Rizal Province. We all met at KRB Motocross Speedway in Antipolo for lunch, at Coach Mel's place (known by riders as Mel Aquino's Yamaha Off-road Training Camp woohoo!). Then we headed for Binangonan to this really awesome place. 

    On a hilltop in Eastridge Executive Village stands this white modern-Mediterranean style building that gleams brightly under the sun. It houses the Art Sector Gallery and also Chimney Cafe 360. 

   It is a special events place where not only can you can appreciate fine art while you lounge and enjoy a favorite beverage or snack, but also marvel at the beautiful view of Laguna Lake and the Sierra Madre mountain ridge. You can also see how lovely the sun or moon rises or sets on them from their balconies and decks.

   If you know where to look (and if weather permits), you will see the Pililla Windmills or even Ortigas Center or Makati, or your house if you have excellent vision haha!

Sunday, October 11, 2020

El Bohemio y La Pandemia

     I was looking at my blog and and I feel like a store owner visiting his shop that has been closed down since the quarantine, checking if all his stuff is still in there hehe! Oh but this blog has been "closed" since the start of the year. Let's just say that the owner wasn't motivated enough to fill his shop new goods. 

   Why wouldn't I feel un-inspired? Well I'm pretty sure a lot of people share the same  sentiments. I mean, we all hoped that 2020 would be a better year - a blast of good things, because 2019 seem to had been a tough one. But instead, 12 days after New Year, a volcano did an earth-shaking blast, as if it heralded the coming of difficult times. True enough, not so pretty news continue to flow down on us like lava, both here and overseas. You hear about sudden deaths and they remind you of the shortness of life. You hear about natural disasters and they remind you of the end times. Those reminders makes you wanna go out and seize the day. But you can't go out like you used to. Covid-19 says go seize the day in the confines of your home. (Lucky for you if it's spacious and has a yard).

  Turn a spare motorcycle helmet visor                                       into an anti-covid  face shield.

    So how am I? Well I'd like to think I'm okay. I've been surviving, you know. I survived the Community Quarantine with all its enhancements and modifications (ECQ, MGCQ, GCQ, and MECQ). As well as the negative vibes brought about by government blunders, the people's disobedience, the whining and  criticisms about them all on social media; I survived the paranoia, the boredom, the loneliness, and the temptation of  buying things online that  I really don't need; I survived the heat of the Summer and the anxiety of not being able to go to the beach; I survived the days of continuous rain that added gloom and extra hassle to the already sad situation... It has been more than 6 months now and this pandemic is expected to last at least 2 years and that doesn't sound okay at all.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Last Post for 2019
And Hopefully Not The Last Ever

       My my... Just look at this blog.  Imagine if websites can accumulate dust after being inactive or unvisited  for many months in a row  haha! It's embarrassing, to say the least, with only 3 posts since 2019 came stomping in. Why, I can even see my 2018 year-end post at the bottom of the blog page! I read it again, actually,  and I seem to have the same feelings now as I write this post. Another year is about to end in a few hours and by the looks of this blog it feels like nothing was ever achieved - no milestone, no ground was broken, nothing happened.

     Well here's a reality check: Things did happen. They may not be the big things that I hoped for but I'm glad they happened anyway. I guess I just didn't feel like sharing them here. Either because of sheer laziness or because I chose to lay in bed and rest my back after a day's work.

      But just to convince myself that my 2019 isn't so bad, here's a summary of the year's somewhat-relevant happenings.

     February, I went to see a classical performance at the Bamboo Organ Festival in Las PiƱas for the first time. I think I'll do this again next year.

       Also in February I saw the ArtFair in Makati for the 4th time. Excited about next year's show.

     In March I visited Intramuros after a long while. I'll come back to see the museums I didn't visit.

      Also in March I enjoyed an overnight beach trip in Lemery, Batangas with my folks - something we haven't done in a long while.

     April, another trip to Puerto Galera with friends. Two of my friends in this pic went abroad, though. Looks like Joey and I will have to tag other friends along next year.

     In May, my ride buddies and I rode to Lucban, Quezon for the annual Pahiyas Festival. This was my 2nd Pahiyas since 2017. Hoping to visit again next year. I just love the happy vibe of everything in there.

    Also in May I printed nearly a hundred shirts of varied designs. I think this will be the last time I'll print shirts for a re-seller. It's just not working for me anymore. Maybe I'll write about this and what will become of Buhay Bohemio shirts in another post.

    Early in June I get to enjoy the beach again with my ride buddies in Calatagan, Batangas. It was my 4th time here. Seems like the perfect beach campsite for us and I'm glad we got to do this again before the rainy season started to pour in.

    The rest of June until September, I spent an awful lot of time and energy rehabilitating my garden. It became crowded and cluttered.
    My mom, she has the greenest of thumbs. But she really doesn't know how to plan a garden. So you will find many of a single pot containing 3 to 4 different plants competing for soil and light; also so many pots containing the same kind of plant that she propagated from a parent plant; and a whole lot of other garden no-no's.
   I've been re-potting and rearranging plans for months by myself and I was beginning to question why I started this project in the first place haha! But everything's in order now. Will take nice pics and post them here soon.

     Early in October I'm glad I got the chance to go someplace new and I think this is my most memorable trip of the year. I went to Tingloy, Maricaban Island (Batangas) and met a friend who showed me around Masasa Beach. It was a much needed  break after that back-breaking garden work.
I'd really love to go back to that beautiful island next year.

    The rest of October until early December was all graphics. More image files for the monogrammed / personalized  products of Customized Chic. It was their peak season. They have a new product line that just came out this year - printed fabric items like robes, hooded jackets, bags, pillows, table runners, etc... They're quite tedious to make compared to the plexiglass items they started with.
    Been doing this stuff for maybe 5 years now. I'd be lying if I say I have not grown weary of doing this. I'd also be lying if I said I never needed this job. It is, after all, a source of income - a side-job. But the thing is, the side-job became the bread-and-butter. This is the result of my failure to make my brand Buhay Bohemio a thriving business. I failed to make it my No. 1 priority. Now 8 years after I started to make and sell shirts, here I am working on somebody else's products when I should be working on what is my own.
    These thought have been going through my head as I struggled to complete the last orders of 2019. Feeling burned-out and lost, I fell into a spell of depression. But I pulled myself together as I always do. I had to - I still have some shopping to do. I don't want my folks to think that I'm using depression as an excuse for not getting them gifts haha!

     Third week of December, clearly 2019 wasn't done with me yet. I caught the flu. I endured a week of sore throat while I feel my body fighting this shit for days. I thought if I go riding to Manila to check out the newly refurbished Jones Bridge with my ride buddies will make me feel better. Ah but no. Ended up with a lot of sneezing, a runny nose and aching sinuses. Well at least the cough didn't push through thanks to the syrup I took in advance hehe. I'm feeling better now, btw.

    I've been seeing memes on Facebook saying that 2019 has been hard on all of us. Feels true? We know it's true. We've seen people who had been hit harder even on Christmas Eve!  Sad news here, bad news there - it's easy to feel despairing and discouraged. But it's completely okay to let ourselves experience and appropriately express these emotions for our own well being...  Am I beginning to sound like a shrink? Hehe well, I'm not even a life coach or a fortune teller to give  you the best advice. Who knows what 2020 may bring? All I can say is just welcome the good stuff and accept the bad stuff (that you didn't see coming haha) but never allow negative feelings take over. Happiness happens - so simply ALLOW it to happen.

 So yeah, like I said last year, let us allow ourselves to have a HAPPY NEW YEAR! ^_^