Shop to win an Amanpulo holiday from Rockwell
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The heat is on with Power Plant mall’s sizzling summer raffle!
Get a chance to win a complete travel package to Aman Resorts, Amanpulo.
The 3-day/2-night package includes round-trip airfare, accommodation, massage, yoga class, snorkeling and other relaxing activities in the island.
Also get a chance to win sunglasses care of L.S. Pascual.

Amanpulo - Aerial View
Amanpulo - Beach Club 2
Amanpulo - Swimming Pool 2
Amanpulo - Casita Bedroom and Sundeck

You’ll get one raffle ticket for every single receipt purchase (minimum Php 2,000) from shops at the Power Plant Mall, One Rockwell, Manansala and Joya Residences. Or spend a minimum of Php 3,000 single receipt purchase at Rustan’s Supermarket.
To get your raffle stubs, present your receipts at the redemption booth near the R1 level escalator, North Wing of Power Plant Mall.
The winner of the vacation package must be at least 18 years old with a proof of Philippine residency.
The Great Summer Getaway Promo ends on April 30, 2013 while the raffle draw is on May 2, 2013.
For more information, go to

Per DTI-NCR Permit No.A2-0321, Series of 2013.

Life before wifi, Part 3
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Sorry, Part 3 took longer than I planned.
It’s because I didn’t realize life after wifi is actually a cornier story to tell.
I do remember the first time I experienced broadband. It was at my dad’s house. I was surprised when I turned on my sister’s computer and was instantly connected. I couldn’t believe it! There was no dial-up sound with toing, toing, toing. My brain could not process.

In June 2003, Jeroen and I finally moved to our new house, away from the parents, along with our two baby boys, household staff and our family computer—a Mac.
The Mac even had its own room. We called it….the computer room!
Ben started using the computer at 1 1/2 years. Markus started much later. But now at ages 11 and 9, both have amazing Minecraft skills.


I had my own laptop in my room where I blogged.
One day I remember talking to Jay Lozada on the phone, who casually told me about wifi.
Apparently it was a wireless Internet that could be accessed in any part of the house.
“You mean I could write in my courtyard?”
“Yes,” he said.
I could not believe it! This was my Mac in 2007—a hand-me-down from my Dad.

My old skin

I think we were relatively one of the first homes that had wifi in Metro Manila—so novel it was, we even had wifi parties at home. This was 2007.

Wifi wrap dinner at home

Things definitely changed when Jeroen also got his own Mac. It became like his second wife.

My boys and their toys

And now computers are very much part of our home. My kids say they can’t imagine life without internet. That makes me feel bad because they don’t even know the joy of patintero.
That’s why this summer, they’re required to step out and do exercise or sports hour everyday, be it basketball or swimming, and they follow.
As for everything else that changed, that would require another blog post. But I won’t be calling it Part 4 because I don’t want you to wait again. Meanwhile, let me catch up with all my backlogged work.
Told you it’s a corny story.

basic human needs

Life before wifi, Part 2
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In 1997, God gave me the best birthday present: I met Jeroen.
Sixteen years later we are still together as married best friends with three boys.
Jeroen had just arrived from Sydney, Australia and decided to stay after meeting me.

Jeroen when I met him
Jeroen at a friend’s house in Mandaluyong, 1997

Luckily my sister was just opening Dôme Café at the Shangri-La Plaza and needed a foreign chef.
Jeroen got the job. Soon after, we got him a pager too.
On his free time he would visit me at home and play Super Mario or watch movies on LaserDisc, which were rented from a store on Mabini Street, San Juan.
When I told our son Ben this story, he asked me to show him what a LaserDisc looked like.
“Oh my God, that’s huge!” Ben gasped, when I showed him this video:

Life was awesome. Here’s Tony Hadley on LaserDisc:

You’ve got mail

Jeroen and I got married on November 25, 2000. He moved in with me, which shocked the hell out of my baby sister when she saw him sleeping on my bed one morning.
“Natulog dito si Jeroen!” she came running to my parents, very upset.

I was already subscribed to a Tri-Isys dial up account, which needed a few tries before getting connected.
The thrill of listening to your dial-up connecting is something today’s kids won’t ever understand, said my Twitter follower.
I still have fond memories of personally going to the Tri-Isys office at Robinson’s Galleria to pay my monthly bill.
We were billed by the hour back then, so we didn’t spend the whole day and night online. And after I went online, I would ask Jeroen, “Do you want to use the computer?” before logging off. Because sayang the minutes!
It was during this time, the year 2000, that I started blogging.

(To be continued)

Life before wifi, Part 1
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I first heard about the information superhighway (or Internet to you) when I was studying at Parsons New York back in the ’90s. My dad told to me to check it out so we could communicate via email, but I didn’t get it then.
Back the ’90s, Internet was really new. My Mac looked like this

My old Mac SE/30

My favorite gadget was the Nintendo Super NES, where I played many games of Super Mario 3.
I remember calling my Dad long distance to ask if it was OK to spend $139 for it. :)


When I went back to Manila in 1995, Internet still wasn’t a big thing—pagers were!
I quickly subscribed to EasyCall 141. My pager looked exactly like this:

Easy Call Beeper

To send a message to someone’s pager, you had to call a 141 number and tell the operator your message.
How awkward it was to say “I love you” to an EasyCall operator. Can you imagine what those people went through, having to hear sappy messages all day long? They must’ve rolled their eyes a lot.
I also remember there were certain words you couldn’t use, like shit or crap. You were not allowed to curse on EasyCall.
My cellphone was a huge Nokia phone with antenna. It was as big as remote control.

Texting wasn’t happening yet, so pagers were still very popular.
I remember the first person I knew who was texting—Ariel Lozada, who directed my first fashion show in 1996.
I would watch in awe as he texted model Joyce Oreña, another early adopter.
When I finally got my phone to text I would text junk to Ariel—that would be the equivalent of people who still send useless email.
So that time, everyone still had the phone and pager combo or just pager and landline.
Take note: the word “landline” was new. Prior to cellphones, we just called it “telephone.” Walang landline.

Death of a pager

Then one day my assistant Melvin Mojica announced he was giving up his pager to buy a cellphone that could text instead. I was shocked because I couldn’t imagine giving up my pager.

We all had pagers: (from left) Rene Perrenoud, Ge Madriaga, Paolo Arévalo, myself, Paolo Raymundo and Melvin Mojica at my fashion show in Fashion Café, Glorietta, in 1999. (Photo: Eddie Boy Escudero)

It turns out Melvin was psychic.
And so it came to pass: more and more people dropped their pagers for a cellphone, and EasyCall, once an enviable company, died a natural death.

(To be continued)

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