Remember the first time you flew in a plane?

I sure do. It was a small plane my family took to Baguio, back in the ’70s when the Loakan airport was still open.
I was in the back seat with my yaya and our rosaries. We were convinced we would die.
The plane was tiny, maybe 10 seats including pilots. I had claustrophobia.
It was hot inside and had these tiny round blowers you could point to your face for air. It even had a toilet hidden under one of the seats, just in case.
Nobody ever used it though.
We took that plane to Baguio each time, and each time I would beg my dad if I could go with the car instead.
He thought I was crazy.
From that I developed a fear of flying. Now I need to check the plane I’m booking. It has to be a 777. No Airbuses for me.
That said, I cried when I watched this short film about two Dutch grandmas who were riding on a plane for the first time.
I love grandmas and I miss my grandmas who traveled together, so watching them go through this warms my heart.

Who’s afraid of mosquitoes?

“Why are you hoarding mosquito spray?”
We were at Manning’s Hong Kong and my friend Patrice wanted to know.

Mosquito problems

“We have a mosquito problem at home. Don’t you?”
Patrice and I both live in Pasig. In fact all of her three sons have (thankfully) survived dengue.
It started probably a month ago. It was my Dutch husband who first noticed it because mosquitoes just love him.
“You have sweet blood,” I told him.
Then the village issued this letter:

Mosquito problems

Walking around the village the other night I saw neighbours swatting mosquitoes with electronic tennis rackets. They are sold out everywhere. My sister-in-law gave me one, but it conked out after two days.
One day I woke up with ten red dots on my left hand. I thought I had measles.
Last week I woke up with 15 bites on my face, and our bed sheet had various blood stains.

Mosquito problems
Mosquito problems
Mosquito problems

I imagined those bloodsuckers feasting on us while we were sleeping.
Sometimes my husband would wake up from the sound of a mosquito in his ear.
He’s upset. I went to Wilcon to buy cheap Akari lamps. They seemed to work at first, and then it seemed like the mosquitoes became immune to them.

Mosquito problems

Yesterday I woke up with this arm.

Mosquito problems

I realised the mosquito problem was real and thought about the plague in the Bible.
This afternoon I decided to buy a more serious back up. But so far we have heard it zap maybe seven times. Meanwhile the mosquitoes were hovering around me.

Mosquito lamp

I’m not even sure if mosquitoes are attracted to the lamps. What I know is, they attracted to dark colours. Therefore, they are attracted to my clothes!
Thankfully night mosquitoes are not dengous (I made that up).
But so far tonight, inside the bedroom, there seems to be less mosquitoes.
I have never been so terrified of mosquitoes. With that and all the strange misfortunes happening around me, my friends and in the world (a.k.a. the missing Malaysian plane), I wonder if it is a sign of the Apocalypse.
Excuse me while I scratch under my arm.
And oh and before I forget, happy birthday Rob! I hope you are mosquito-free, wherever you are.

The Upper House, Hong Kong

Finally, I got a chance to stay at the Upper House Hong Kong and see if it lives up to its reputation as being the chicest place to stay in Hong Kong.

TUH Exterior Day

Just a few days ago, Tilda Swinton was a guest.

My friends and I decided to make a quick trip to celebrate Patrice’s birthday, before sending off our friend Penny to her month-long trip to the US. This is what our room looked like

Studio 70 Harbour View

It has a couch that doubles as an extra bed and a desk with so many plugs for your chargers.
Plus huge windows with motorised curtains (if you can call it that)

Studio 80

Patrice checked out the minibar

Patrice checks out the minibar

Everything in the minibar is free and refillable, except for the wines


I may know some people who would take/consume all of these :)

Free minibar

Penny used the coffee maker

Coffee maker

while i enjoyed the fresh milk that came in these cute bottles

Milk bottles

The bathroom is the most important place for me in any hotel, so here we go.
The bathroom is huge and separated in two parts. You go down this hallway


To the right is a small closet and dressing table where we parked our luggage.


Further down is this zen-like toilet

Upper House toilet

On the left side are the chuva-approved counter sinks


Right behind the lavatory is the bath area


There’s a huge bathtub with a view from the sinks (therefore, nobody used it)


And an open shower with a view from the left side


I’m not an exhibitionist, so I don’t really like open bathrooms. I also feel that the bathroom is too big and maze-like.
I prefer a simpler layout where you can jump from toilet to sink to shower and not have to walk all the way around.
I like space. At Upper House, there was not much space to spread the luggage.
Because of these, I still prefer the Four Seasons Hong Kong.

Four Seasons HK

Love this closet

Four Seasons HK

Love this bathroom

Four Seasons HK

What I liked most about the Upper House was the beautiful lawn where we spent hours talking

Lawn Stairs

It is currently under renovation, so I hope to take Jeroen there one day, if ever we do stay at the Upper House.
To know more about the Upper House, click HERE.

Men and their Goyards

Yesterday I spotted this fairly chic Japanese dude at Pepper Lunch Megamall.

Man with Goyard

Why do I know he’s Japanese?
1) He looks chica.
2) He’s at Pepper Lunch.
3) He has a white Goyard St. Louis tote.
“That can be for men pala,” noted my friend Alexei Villaraza.
Oh yes, in fact I love seeing Japanese men with Goyard totes, like these two I spotted in Tokyo in 2008

Man with Goyard

and in 2012

Nice Goyard color

Of course it helps kung guapo sana sila, hehe.
Just my two cents.

Scenes we’d like to see

When I was a kid growing up in the ’70s, one of my joys was to read my brother’s MAD magazines.

MAD MAGAZINE 1978 Vintage Illustration BY JACK RICKARD Alfred E. Newman JOHN TRAVOLTA Saturday Night FeverMAD MAGAZINE 1977 CHARLIE'S ANGELS Kate Jackson JACLYN SMITH Farrah Fawcett VINTAGE ILLUSTRATION Alfred E. Newman by JACK RICKARD

Of course I had to wait for him to finish reading before I could get my hands on it.
One of the things I enjoyed in MAD was a page called Scenes We’d Like To See, such as this one:

MAD magazine

I know, how corny right? But I loved it as a child.
Now how about some scenes we’d like to see in real life, such as this vintage footage of Claudine Barretto slipping on ASAP Live

or better, this Dutch reporter’s TV interview gone wrong. Priceless!!

UPDATE: Apparently the whole thing was staged, says the Dutch Telegraaf. It’s a freaking hoax!

Celebrate Easter with promos at Raffles and Fairmont Makati

The Raffles and Fairmont Makati makes a splash this summer with exciting offers, fun activities, and luxe accommodations for Easter.
From April 9 to 20, 2014, book a minimum of two nights at Raffles Makati or Fairmont Makati for a chance to win a three-night stay at the Raffles Grand Hotel D’Angkor Siem Reap, or at the Raffles Hotel Le Royal Phnom Penh, both in Cambodia—or two-nights accommodation at the impressive Fairmont Beijing.

Raffles Executive Suite Bedroom

This offer, valid exclusively for local residents, is available at Fairmont Makati for Php 8,200 net per night, inclusive of buffet breakfast for two at Spectrum, and at Raffles Makati for rates beginning at Php 15,570 net per night, inclusive of buffet breakfast for two, afternoon tea, evening cocktails and complimentary wireless Internet connection.
Those who avail of the room packages will also get 50% off on relaxing Willow Stream Spa treatments; and complimentary free-flowing champagne when partaking of the Luxe Sunday Brunch at Spectrum.

Fairmont Pool Bar Service

Guests staying from April 19 to 20 also receive one complimentary ticket to the Raffles Rascals Easter Egg Painting event at the Ballroom.
The event is open to the public on April 20 from 10 AM to 12 noon. For Php 995 net, each child will receive painting materials, a Raffles Rascals apron and an ostrich egg to decorate and take home.

Easter Eggs

On Easter Sunday, brunch will be served at Spectrum for Php 2,777 net per person. Or enjoy free-flowing Champagne with the meal for Php 3,888 net per person. Children ages six to twelve years old get to dine at half-price, while the buffet is free for kids ages five and below.

Spectrum buffet at Raffles

From 2:30 to 5:30 PM, the Fairmont Lounge invites children to a Teddy Bear Easter Tea Party, available at Php 1,044 net per child.
For more information, call Raffles Makati at 555-9777 or the Fairmont Makati at 5559888.
For restaurant reservations, call 555-9840 or email or

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