Archive for February, 2015

Bongat sees bullish Naga in 2015 and beyond

February 27th, 2015 No comments
Naga as the center of trade and commerce in Bicol will continue to ram through as the most dynamic economic power in this part of the country until the succeeding years of his administration and even beyond.
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Pacific Island Love

February 26th, 2015 No comments

P o s t e r  D e s i g n  _  E l e c t r o l y c h e e . c o m

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AdNU Press: Youngest, Premier

February 22nd, 2015 No comments

Ateneo de Naga University Press: The youngest university press in the country. The premier resource of Bikoliana in the world.
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February 16th, 2015 No comments


We wanted to go to somewhere that's a bit more road less traveled that's still within the Schegen area. February was the coldest month in Iceland (according to the Lonely Planet) but we thought less tourist might mean cheaper prices and places to see without the crowd.


We opted to try our luck with AirBnb again as we wanted to stay in a residential neighborhood rather than a hotel. Especially, when I saw the Tron-ish church Hallgrimskirkja I really, really wanted to stay near there. We could have opted to stay at Hótel Leifur Eiríksson as it's literally across the Hallgrimskirkja and it was featured in the Simpsons (The Sage of Carl; more reference to that episode, later) but the offer in Airbnb was irresistible.
Reykjavik is pretty small for a capital city. I'd have a harder time navigating Quezon City but it is slightly larger and more vibrant than Naga.
From our apartment everything seems to be walking distance; the city centre is about a 15 minute walk and the harbor is about 20-ish at a leisurely pace.
Moving houses...quite literally

You can see this mobile crane far away.


The Harpa, according to a walking student guide was built when Iceland was in financial meltdown. Talk about Keynesian economics, eh. The inside is impressive but I wish they had a bar on top or something. It is a concert hall but I did hope there was more variety to the things they catered for.

The Lobster Hut, according to my friend, is popular in  TripAdvisor. It was just opposite the Grey Line tour bus (which we didn't get a chance to use) and across the opera house. 
I tried the Lobster sub and it was good (too good, I didn't have time to take a picture) as it was quite tasty and not that filling. My friend had the Lobster soup which was in a coconut-curry base of some kind.
Continuing our food trip, we reluctantly tried fermented shark. Some people don't like it because it's rotten (shark meat is poisonous when eaten without curing) and some just don't like it in principle.
It's an Icelandic tradition so we had to try it.
Fermented Shark
The shark tasted of ammonia so had to wash it with Brennivin.
Shark. Shark fin soup. Hotdogs and Whale steak

The night we came on was, coincidentally, the start of the Reykjavik Winter Lights Festival. It started with a lights show on Hallgrimskirkja - a cool eight minute walk from our apartments.
They also had a snowboarding show in the city centre. So that was cool.
Note to self: Learn to snowboard and get a better camera
They had a picture of Clinton on a small hotdog stand in the city centre. There's always a line but the dogs were cheap and delicious.

A quick tipple before going  home.
Bars and clubs open until 4:30 in the morning but we had to skip that as we had a tour booked in the morning.

The Golden Circle tour starts

The Strokkur geyser
Apparently, the word geyser came from this place. So even though it wasn't as popular as the one in Yellowstone National Park (I'm basing this from pictures) it is still  pretty awesome.
A lot of the people stayed on the far side it was just myself on the other end. I didn't know why, I swear I didn't stink. Haha.

This cute couple got caught in the steam.

Further on we went to this awesome falls. It's called Gullfoss and it looked brilliant with all the snow - very Game of Thrones beyond the Northern Wall vibe.
You know nothing Jon Snow, but if you read this you might learn a thing or two

Mid-Atlantic Ridge

My friend tried the lamb's head and best place to have it is at the bus stop. It's priced alright and that's where bus drivers go - so, locally approved?

The Blue Lagoon was a good experience. My camera would have conked out with all the steam and humidity so didn't take a lot of photos. I would have wanted to try an in water massage but time wass against me that afternoon.
Word of warning, I opted to rent a robe and a towel. They both got lost so I had to ask for replacements (they were lost twice).
The towels and the robe all look the same so some knobhead must have just taken the closest one they could find. My slippers on the other had I couldn't replace anymore.
To be fair, I mistakenly took someone's bath towel in the shower by mistake. How did I know? My friend pointed I had a light brown towel whereas my rented one was darker brown with Blue Lagoon logo on it.  My bad to whoever I pinched that towel from - I swear I didn't mean to.

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Sonétos Gabós: W. Shakespeare in Bikol

February 14th, 2015 No comments

Sonétos Gabós (Sonnets All) presents Gode B. Calleja’s translation in Bikol of all of William Shakespeare’s 154 Sonnets. It will be published in April 2015 by the Ateneo de Naga University Press in time for the opening of the 400th death anniversary (1616-2016) of the great Bard.
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Andi X Cat | Maternity Session

February 14th, 2015 No comments


L /


I can’t wait to learn what you do with your hands
when you’re not holding anything
and how big your handwriting is
and what your face looks like
when you’re reading or listening.




















I want to admire
every inch of your being.


I wonder if I should write these things
But if you’d written them for me
I could easily cry for joy














Thank You -
Andi Manzano – Reyes
X Cat Juan – Ledesma| Styling – Rabbithole Creatives | Hair & Makeup - The MakeUp Studio | Flowers – Teddy Manuel | Shot on Location – The Henry Hotel |

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Amalfi Coast & Pompeii

February 14th, 2015 No comments
Last November, we took a long-ish break to visit the Amalfi Coast.
It's always been known as the playground for the rich and popular, so it's gotta be done. :)
November is the start of the low-season for Amalfi so we weren't able to go to Capri as no boats were travelling but, honestly, we wouldn't have found the time to go the Capri anyway.
When we went, I think the time was just perfect as the sun was out and there weren't that many people. Win-win.
We flew to Naples airport and then took a taxi to the Amalfi Coast. Cab prices were clear, fixed and regulated so take note NAIA.
We were dropped to our apartment that we have rented through AirBnb (Yey sharing economy)
View from the Taxi ride, priceless. Actual taxi ride about 100 Euros for the one-way trip..

View from the apartment. Waking up to this was just bliss
The apartment that we got had the most amazing view of the sea. Waking up early (even on holiday) was worth it.

You'd have to pay thousands of pesos for a view like this on a hotel. We know cause we compared a room with a balcony with the hotel next door!
We went for a walk to the next small-ish town and the deserted coast is just ace. Only the local seagulls kept us company.

Amalfi is known as a playground for the rich. Julio, ihanda ang helicopter!

 There was a lot of walking involved...
 One of my friends wanted to go the the Fjord Furore, if you google it most of the time the beach is almost always full. As it was off-season and the tide was really strong, again, we were the only one there.
That was amazing!

Only good swimmers need to try

 We rented a car and drove to Positano as the even the bus service was restricted, I guess not a lot of locals took the public transport.
Positano is one of the jewels of the coast.

 We waited until the sun came down to see it in its full splendor. I can only imagine what it looks like in the summer -although I imagine it would be crammed with thousands of people.

View on the drive back to Amalfi

Amalfi, of course, is the popular destination for the not-so-rich rich. Positano hotels are almost always posher and more exclusive than Amalfi but I thought Amalfi had more charm.

Peroni. I know Stella Artois is available in Manila now but you wouldn't even touch that after you'd had Peroni.

Posh hotel!

If I was a rich boy da-da-da-da...

The very charming Amalfi Cathedral
 We were worried as they had rain and clouds forecasted a few days before we went to Amalfi but we had the sun the days we were there.
 On the way back, we went on an unplanned visit to Pompeii. We were just gonna head straight back to the Airport but decided to leave a tad early and drop by Pompeii.

Mt Vesuvius

Italian Askals!

Dog 1: Sono Filippini. Dog 2: Si

 The relics around Pompeii definitely deserves a whole day just to go around but as we were pressed for time we only saw a part of it.

The site is massive and well worth the entrance fee.
 Interesting side note, they serve beer in Italian Mcdonald's only Peroni obviously.
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New edition of Allan Popa’s ‘Hunos’

February 13th, 2015 No comments

Allan Popa's first collection of poetry, Hunos, will be republished in April 2015 by the Ateneo de Naga University Press. The new edition includes translations in Katandungan, the poet's native tongue, by Gerry S. Rubio and Arnold M. Valledor.
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Call for Paper for Bikol Studies: Jesuits & Bikol

February 12th, 2015 1 comment

CALL FOR PAPERS: "Bikol Studies: Perspectives and Advocacies" is a peer-reviewed journal published twice a year by the Ateneo de Naga University through its University Press. The journal acts as a forum for critical and interdisciplinary approaches, perspectives and advocacies centered on Bikol, as a region, society, culture, and identity.

Bikol Studies accepts research articles, critical essays, photo essays, translations, commentaries, reviews and other forms of scholarly papers. Submissions should be sent as an attachment to a brief letter of intent to be emailed to Manuscripts must be prepared following the Chicago Manual of Style. The journal accepts submissions written in any of the Bikol languages, Tagalog or English.

For its Volume 2, Number 2, Bikol Studies sets focus on Jesuits and Bikol, with Dr. Rebecca C. Torres, Dean of AdNU Graduate School, as the Issue Editor.

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A walk to centro, imported cheese and mangoes

February 3rd, 2015 No comments
HOW are we today? This I customarily ask our guest who hails all the way from Europe.
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City task force cleans up major city streets

February 2nd, 2015 No comments
MORE than 200 workers of the city government rolled up their sleeves to clean up one of the city’s major thoroughfares last week.
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