Sunday, November 28, 2010

Random Thoughts: Photo Calendar

2010 will be over several weeks from today. Just like the other past years, it passes us by too quickly don't you think? What happened to you this year? Have you been lucky? Happy? What are your goals for next year? Would you like to make a difference or start anew? 

What I do sometimes to remind me of what I did the last year is personalize my calendar(I, sometimes print a couple of copies for my friends too). I put photos of the things I did(new experience/s, happy gatherings, etc) in a particular month. It doesn't just put a smile on my face, it also motivates me to do better and explore new things. Looking at it makes me feel like I have to do greater things for the next 12 months so that next year the pictures that I will put on the new calendar will outshine than those from the previous year!

New Year's Resolution#1: DIET!!!
New Year's Resolution#2: Give and Take for a better relationship.
New Year's Resolution#3: More time with Teammates.
New Year's Resolution#4: Do something special for friends.
New Year's Resolution#5: More travel with travel buddies.
New Year's Resolution#6: More surprises for dear ones.
New Year's Resolution#7: Make new friends.
New Year's Resolution#8: Do things I have never experienced before.
New Year's Resolution#9: My birthday gift to myself: Share my blessings
with others.
New Year's Resolution#10: Learn new things from IT people.
New Year's Resolution#11: More physical activities for a healthy body.
New Year's Resolution#12: Be yourself all the time but learn how to 
control your temper and emotions to avoid hurting someone.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Point-and-Shoot: Up-Close

Here are some photos I took...

"Teary-eyed" / Baby Saavedra 2009
"The Punk" / December 2009
"Let there be light!" / 2009
"Daydream" / August 2008
"Korean Peace" / April 2010
"Orange" / December 2009

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Boxing Experience: Session #4

November 18, 2010
Thursday Night in Pictures

our trainers handwrapping us...

stretching before we begin our boxing routine

the thing i hate...i dunno how to use it...nyaaa...

the speed ball...I improved my rhythm! hopefully I can do it the way they punch it...soon...

ok partner...let's do it...but I'm not ready for a sparring in the Ring yet...nah-ah!

a minute break for paw-paw =)

we're done! next, massage...

boys will be boys...

just wanna feel what its like being in the ring with the headgear and gloves...

the punching bag.... requires power!

I noticed the banners hanging in the rafters, they seem familiar... i just learned that most of the photos were our trainers...when they were still active playing the sport.

Boxing is interesting, boxing is fun...boxing helps us keep our body healthy. Try moh! =D

Friday, November 19, 2010

Badminton Profile

I love badminton. I almost mourn when I graduated in college, thinking I can never play it again especially when I start working. But I'm glad I was able to play 'til now with my co-workers and friends! I even had the chance to join some tournaments and able to get a handful of championships.

Here's a story of how I came to love the sport. I would say, accidentally. Why, you ask? Hmmm...during high school I'm very active in sports and I like volleyball the most. I didn't know that time that badminton was actually a competitive sport probably because I didn't hear anything about it on TV or radio, we never had badminton tournaments in our school and we only play it in the streets during summer afternoons.

Since, I was a player back in HS, I have a dream of joining the college volleyball varsity team. I tried out but unfortunately, I wasn't lucky enough to be selected. Frustrated, I tried badminton just to divert my disappointment and surprisingly, the coach told me I have the skills and so I was chosen. I'm happy because I never expected it(but still it felt like it would be better if it was the volley team).

(PHOTOS: MSI Smashers' Club)

And the training begins. I was taught the basics: footworks, hand-grips and shots. I was being prepared for the upcoming Sportsfest. We would go on my grueling routine 2-3 times a week. We would go to Camp Crame(National Police Headquarters) to use their facilities -free of charge(because she's a General's daughter)- and play doubles with some of the off-duty policemen. 

Then here comes the sporting event, poised to play in the semi-finals round but as a rookie, playing singles, I am still scared that I might disappoint the whole IT team if I lost. 'There is no chance I will win this game', I repeatedly said to myself, because infront of me is this tall, athletic girl in her senior, looking pretty confident to win the game. But the crowd were chanting my name, cheering on me each time I score a point...I feel excited, I needed to win!  And guess what, I won the match!(HAH! perhaps my opponent was just intimidated to my constant stare haha...she didn't know how nervous I am). That's the best feeling I ever felt since I graduated in HS!

My partner was set to play in the Finals, but we can't find her within the gym's premises. In 5minutes the umpire will disqualify us if we can't present our player on time. They have no choice but to let me play the game. I am not prepared for that match, obviously. I know how really good my opponent is, a graduating student who has trained so hard to finally get a well-deserved championship medal. I was the one who got intimidated this time around, but I can't lose without a fight... 3rd set... I lost...she won. I'm upset but realized it's her time not mine. My teammates ran towards me and hugged me, admiring how I put my heart into the court.

On my Senior year, I got my first Gold a hard fought battle. =)

From that moment on, Badminton wasn't just a street game anymore...

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Point-and-Shoot: Hands & Fingers

Here are some shots I took...

"Midnight Star"
"Hand Mask"
"Take Five"
"Morning Star"

Monday, November 15, 2010

David and Goliath: 21st Century Face-Off

Manny Pacquiao vs Antonio Margarito
November 14, 2010 (Philippine Time)

I made a prediction weeks ago(click here to view my post) that the Filipino boxer will again show us why he's the pound-for-pound King. And he didn't disappoint me! Like many other fighters he had fought, Manny punished Antonio Margarito and crushed his beautiful face.

We had a betting game(just for fun) at the office, I told them nobody will be knocked down. Pacman has the heart of a champion while Margarito has the strength of a tiger, therefore(i just thought), both will stand up 'till the end...and I was right...again. But I bet for a Round 7 knockdown anyways haha... and so I lost. =D No matter what, I'm happy Pacquiao won yet another world title with a style.

Manny, Manny, Manny! He was all over the place. Eventhough, Margarito got most of the advantages(he was 17lbs heavier with a height and reach advantage) he needed to win the fight, he still came up short in upsetting the Fighter of the Decade.

David's combinations were too strong, Margarito's defense was a non-factor at all, his lefties somehow finds its way to Goliath's face. Relying extremely on his speed, Pacman throws powerful punches relentlessly until his opponent's face became unrecognizable.

At the end of twelfth round, Manny Pacquiao was unanimously announced as the WBC Super Welterweight Champion. His 8th title in 8 different divisions. A new world record. A feat that puts Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s legacy officially on the line.

Antonio Margarito, on the other hand, was beaten so badly he needed to have a surgery to fix a broken right eye socket.

a lesson learned from the master: don't ever underestimate the undersized.

Congratulations Congressman!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Weekend Getaway: An Adventure to Mt Pinatubo

Pinatubo Crater Lake
Mt. Pinatubo, Philippines
November 13, 2010

Our last out of town trip this year...we chose to visit the majestic(as others often describes it) Mt Pinatubo lake. The said volcano by the way, was located at the intersection of the borders of Zambales, Pampanga and Tarlac. Our trip guides fetched us along McArthur Highway in Capas, Tarlac.

waiting to the other group at McDonald's Capas

with our tour guides Perci and Kuya Nardo

soldiers marched early in the morning

We stopped over at the middle of the desert-like 'Lahar' area to take a picture with the scenic view of nearby mountains. Perci said this lahar-stricken area was once a forest and a military base. Buried meters below were tall trees, military tents, tanks and definitely bodies of people and animals unable to escape the volcano's eruption in June 1991.
the trekkers: gel, mace, me and gi

the cloud-covered mountains

With the "skyway"(a road made for 4x4 jeeps all the way to the crater's jump off point) under construction(it was destroyed by the recent typhoons), we have to take the long trail. It could take us 2-3hrs to reach the lake instead of just 20 minutes on the short trek but the advantage of taking the long trail is that you will have the chance to see the "Lahar Canyons". These walls like the one below are pure ashes from Pinatubo's spews years is very dangerous, unpredictable and is super sensitive that even a sound wave can make it collapse.

the bumpy road along lahar canyons

cows resting in the morning

Rubber or closed shoes are not advisable while trekking along the streams as pebbles and sand tend to get in it. Slippers or sandals is of better use. Halfway, sulfur was seen along the streams which means we're getting closer to the crater.
putting back my shoes on

the rust-like brown sulfur

Finally! the jaw-dropping magnificent view of the crater unfolded! The long trek was well worth it. Our prayers were answered as well, it was sunny up there!
just arrived at the hidden paradise! whew!!!

the welcome sign

just having fun after the tiring hours of walk

it is indeed MAJESTIC! two-thumbs up!
Looking at our fellow visitors makes me more proud, all of them were foreigners in different nationalities. They crossed the ocean and have traveled from different sides of the world just to see this fast-becoming popular tourist spot.

a hundred eighty seven steps down the crater

our bonggang-bonggang signature: ang turo-turo duon! hehe...

The crater isn't like the usual from-shallow-to-deep waters. The lake is like a cup, it is 200ft deep, that's why swimming is not encouraged. We would like to try boating and cook eggs at the other side of the lake(where the water is much hotter) but it is only allowed during summer. We'll get back for that on March! =)
taking a quick dip at the cool water

blue-green calm waters of the lake

Perci and his team set up a tent for us and our belongings. After having our lunch and rest, we packed up to avoid a possible rain shower in the late afternoon.

going back up...

a huge volcano rock was torn into pieces as it fell from miles above the sky

The stream's(it was almost empty the first time we passed through it) current becomes a bit stronger but were glad it didn't rain, else it will be too risky for us to continue our trek. Before we jumped on our 4x4 jeep, we took a picture with the Katutubos, the Aetas were the caretakers of Pinatubo and it's surroundings, they were responsible in planting new trees. I personally admire them for taking good care of the once devastated area.

perci assists us in crossing the streams

the friendly aetas

Food was served after taking a refreshing shower at the Spa town. At Php2,500(inclusions: 4x4 jeep rental, morning snack, lunch and dinner, shower facilities with towel and soap, registration and all other fees, porter and tour guide fees with free photo uploads on website), it's all worth it. Next time we will avail the Php4,000 overnight trip, its gonna be a more exciting adventure for sure.
food tastes really good!

We would like to thank the whole team of Pinaykeypoint: Ms Juliet-the head organizer, Kuya Ronald-our 4x4 jeep driver, Perci-our tour guide and photographer, our porter and Kuya Nardo for helping us with our things, for telling us a bit of history of Mt Pinatubo and for providing us a safe day-hike.
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