Monday, June 18, 2007


Enough said.

Japanese Tea Garden, San Francisco December 2006, using my WOCA 120G toy camera.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Prayer mountain

The Philippines and Indonesia are twin countries- from our languages, to our traffic jams, to our food, to our disaster-prone location. But being geologically older, blocks of stone can be hewn from its mountains, allowing monumental buildings and structures to be erected which have stood nature's fickleness and humanities' ineptitude. The example of which is BOROBUDUR, pictured above. This is in comparison with the Philippines lack of such "indigenous" materials, the awful substitute of which is adobe- compacted volcanic soil- which is so much less sturdy thereby making it less likely to survive the heavy stresses of living in the Pacific Ring of Fire and being the Asian Doormat of Typhoons.

But lest I be misinterpreted, the Philippines has a very rich cultural heritage, albeit different and relatively young vis-a-vis Indonesia's standing existing samples. Who know what can be unearthed by Philippine archaeologists in the days to come...

Borobudur, June 2006, using my Canon A430 digicam.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Off to Jakarta

Rushing, rushing to finish everything in my proverbial work inbox before I leave for a seminar-training in Jakarta and Yogyakarta June 3-12.

More details AND pics next time!

I *excite* =]

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

West of Mayon

Rant: Work-related flights are usually the ones which leave Manila around 5am...

Rave: I am privy to the extremes God goes to to rouse humanity from its nocturnal slumber. And the view of steamy Mayon is, ironically, cool.

Flying somewhere over the Bicol region, August 2006, using my Canon A430 digicam.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Where I want to be right *now*

With its quiet charm tucked away from the cacophony of city bustle, Sonya's Garden is the perfect place for the rat-race weary corporate denizen. Good food, envigorating air, colorful vistas, homely furnishings, welcoming staff...

Where's floo powder when you need a handful...

Tagaytay City, November 2006, using my Canon A430 digicam.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Rizal Monumental

He's always standing tall, proud, sometimes legs in midstride, but always dignified, book and coat on hand. You can find him in front of the municipal hall, the central school, the main plaza, or people's park. He comes in various sizes and colors, made from metal, marble, or mortar. I think it is safe to assume that 95% of all Philippine cities and municipalities have at least one monument of our national hero, Jose Rizal.

But I believe that this is the first time I've seen Rizal inspired by Gomez Addams or the Phantom of the Opera...

At the municipal grounds of Sogod, Southern Leyte, August 2006, using my Canon A430 digicam.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Miguel and Antonio go to Manila

Facing the Rizal monument, with your back to Manila Bay, a simple, ornate statue emerges at the corner of Padre Burgos St. and Roxas Boulevard, just as the latter becomes Bonifacio Drive. It commemorates the arrival of Miguel Lopez De Legazpi and his chronicler Antonio Pigafetta and consequent founding of the city of Manila on June 24, 1571. The main subjects of the monument are depicted as two victorious figures holding on to the Flag and the Cross. The base also contains rich ornaments detailing adjunct facets and events to the city's founding.

I came to know about this piece of history while watching the Living Asia channel one morning several years ago. I caught a feature on Manila's forgotten landmarks, structures which are overshadowed by their more famous contemporaries because or hence they have fallen to neglect and disrepair. The Legazpi-Pigafetta monument is practically a stone's throw away from Rizal Park and yet its moat-like water feature is murky and the grass around it unkempt. If it weren't daytime, I would be too afraid to approach it.

The gray, overcast sky shrouding us as a co-worker and I endeavored to visit the monument one afternoon seems to be commiserating with the our poor appreciation of history.

P. Burgos cor Bonifacio Drive/ Roxas Boulevard, Manila, November 2006, using my Canon A430 digicam.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Sugar and Spikes

Technically it was not my first encounter with this Queen Fruit of the South. Whenever my father would come home from a business trip to Davao and its environs, he would bring home packs of durian candy. Being the incurable sweet tooth, that pack would be a goner before you can say, Honey I'm home. Then when I myself was able to visit Davao a decade ago, I got the chance to eat durian ice cream and all the candy I can get my hands on. But still, the fruit eluded me.

Yet the durian and I were destined to meet. In Cagayan De Oro last month, I finally caught a major whiff of and a spoonful of this delectable fruit. It isn't really malodorous; rather, it's sweet scent is so strong that it wallops one's sense of smell. And, at least that particular spoonful I tasted, was Pure Condensed Milk Pretending To Be A Fruit. IT WAS SOOOOO DELIRIOUSLY SWEET. Too sweet and too creamy, even for my own taste buds. I'm sure it's a great fruit, and other varieties are far tastier than what I sampled- but I don't believe I will be rushing to my suking prutasan to devour another durian.

If it is in ice cream form... That's another story.

As my bosses attack a couple of durians at a roadside durian stall, Iligan City, April 2007, using my Canon A430 digicam.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Crossing Roxas

I often use Roxas Boulevard when I go to my UP work, especially during Thursdays when I ought to be off the road most hours of the day because my license plate ends in 7. Roxas usually has traffic enforcers busy making the traffic flow better and they hardly have time to see who's violating the number-coding scheme. And so I was brazen enough to drive ever-so-slowly as I approached this pedestrian crossing, to capture this frame. Little did I know, this will be one of the last photos I will ever have of Honda and our critter-friends...

Roxas Boulevard, sometime October or November 2006, using my WOCA 120G toy camera.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

I Swear

For the life of me, I don't know what this structure is. It is like a boundary marker at the side of the street, a hand held up, with the palm left empty, with a thin bamboo pole impaled on/ impaling the hand. I took this photo just several feet away from the house of the town mayor. An inventive poster area? Symbolism for good government- honesty, transparency, accountability? A botched ode to Christ's crucifixtion?

Dulag, Leyte, August 2006, using my Canon A430 digicam.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Safari Day One

This photoblog is inspired by Dan Eldon, a young photojournalist who was killed while on duty in Somalia. Reckoned by many to have been a premature death, he left an extensive set of journals chronicling a life that was short but truly well-lived. Thank you, Dan, for reminding me that each moment in life is a golden photo opportunity, to be grabbed, savored, captured, framed, and shared...


Traveling is one of the luxuries in life that my parents tried their best to provide for us as we were growing up. Whether they be short drives or trips that cross timezones, these journeys have provide rich learning experiences for all of us, from how to conduct ourselves in foreign lands to the overt lessons in history, art, and culture. Thank you, Mom, Pop, and Ate Chiqui. You are great traveling companions.


Hong Kong is a place that excites all senses. Even in the still of the night sans colors, Hong Kong vibrance is still oh so palpable.

Pratt Street, Hong Kong, with my sister on the left foreground, January 2006, using my Sony Ericsson K500i cameraphone.