Skip to main content

Musings for the Season



Before I left for the holidays, this street corner with World Christmas gigantic displays caught my eye. This could possibly be the only part of Brunei that screams 'Happy Holidays!'

It was amazing to see all the non-Muslims flocking to that corner, eager to have their own little piece of something Christmas-y.  People took turns in having their photos taken with the Leaning Tower of Pisa, Eiffel Tower, and Petronas Twin Towers as the background. Of course, the six bearded, smiling, sweet-smelling, Filipino-speaking Santas had the most photos.


In actuality, it looks like a Christmas display in a far-flung town in the provinces. It is small and doesn't compare to the Greenhills Christmas-On-Display show nor the Lights and Sounds show in Ayala, but it does make one excited and giddy, like a child.

I wouldn't be surprised if a Filipino thought of putting this place up to help bring cheer to the expat community. In a Muslim country like Brunei, this holiday passes without much fuss. I imagine that it would be a tough time for people used to festivities during this season. A year ago, I wanted to experience working in another country and see how would I fare. Let's just say that going away in December, far from family and friends, was not a smart idea. ;)

I am so glad I'm home.


Spread the love wherever you are this season! Happy Holidays!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Tinglayan, Kalinga: Sleeping Beauty, Tattoos, and Babkals

To meet the last tattoo artist Fang-od in the village of Buscalan, one has to board a bus to Tabuk for 12 hours, and take a 3-hr ride from Tabuk to Tinglayan.


There are regular trips from Tabuk to Tinglayan at 7 and 8 in the morning, but since misadventures seem to love us, we missed both trips. At 10AM, we stood at the jeepney stop waiting for any form of transportation. I asked around if there were jeeps stopping by anytime soon but I was just advised to sit and wait. And so we did.

Luckily, thirty minutes later, a jeep stopped in front of us, the driver asked the people where they were headed, and finally, he nodded and decided to go to Tinglayan. On the way to Tinglayan we were greeted with sweeping views of the mountains with the endless flow of the Chico River at its feet. The jeep went further upstream for 3 hours.

It was late in the afternoon when the jeepney pulled to a stop and told us that we were finally at Sleeping Beauty Inn. Francis Pa-in, our guide, came out to meet us an…

Face Your Fear: Mt. Makiling and the Bloodsucking Limatik

Coming from a one-year hiatus, I'm back with a pretty hardcore post. Go ahead and watch the video at the end.

I have a long-standing fear of small crawling or flying insects.. generally anything so small that can go and play inside bodily orifices (nose, ear, eyes, and all the other 'holes' we've got). Thinking of these things gives me the creeps. 
Naturally, stories of leeches (locally known as limatik) scare the heck out of me. Limatiks are widely known in the local hiking groups and there are thousands of horror stories that give me goosebumps. Last July 4, I had the chance to.. get acquainted with the little bloodsuckers.

2016: On Things Other Than Traveling

Photos from 2016 show fantastic things that happened to me this year (throwbacks included), but the real best things weren't caught on camera. Traveling was still a huge part of my year but more than these experiences, 2016 was a year of self-discovery. I'll call it the year I came to terms with my own titahood.

The Best of 2016 The gift of VipassanaThe best thing I gave myself this year was a 10-day Vipassana Meditation course. Years ago, I was looking for a meditation class knowing that I had to go deep in my mind as a form of cleansing.  I knew what I wanted: non-sectarian, in-depth, and stay-in. This year, I finally got myself a slot at the Vipassana Meditation Center Philippines
Ten days later, I felt like a different person. Vipassana is life-changing. The practice taught me to embrace impermanence and to make mindful choices. Vipassana was the catalyst that helped me to finally act on my beliefs. Mastering your mind (or at least the attempt to do so) is liberating. Waki…