Sunday, May 30, 2010

Hong Kong Trip Again

It was my third time in Hong Kong last April 3 and 4, we hopped on a ferry from Macau and it was an hour of journey. We came directly to hostel by taxi and prepared immediately. Our first destination was in Ocean Park, it was my first time so I was kinda excited. We arrived there around 9 in the morning and immediately enjoyed some rides. It was a fun place and we even watched a dolphin and sealion show. I don't know why I was teary eyed watching the dolphin show, I think it was because of the documentary film The cove that I saw the other month and I was really hurt by the scenes of dolphin killings. We also checked the panda habitat, took the cable car and we had our lunch there which was a birthday treat from Razel.

Later that night we decided to visit Victoria Peak and the people were jampacked. When we arrived there, we were all disappointed as the place was full of fog and we can't even view the buildings downside. Twas a good thing that we purchased tickets for Madame Tussaud's wax museum. At least we had a purpose reaching the place. After visiting celebrities and other popular personalities in their wax form, we looked for a Starbucks to have a sip of hot coffee as it was very cold that time.

The next day, we woke up so early to accomplish our schedule. As early as 7AM, we were already prepared and arrived on Ngong Ping cable car at almost 9 in the morning but the station was not yet opened. So we decided to ride a bus that took us to the Big Buddha. Ngong Ping is a highland in the western part of Launtau Island. The big buddha is also known as Tian Tian Buddha which was situated amidst the hills which is about 34m tall. The view of this buddha was magnificent and reaching the top was a very fulfilling. From the top we saw many hills nearby on which we got a closer view when we took the cable car going back to Tung Chung MTR.
After that trip in Lantau Island, the girls went to Disneyland while I took the way going to Sai Kung where I met my friend's mother. Wendel's mother is a resident in Hong Kong and put up a Filipino restaurant. Sai Kung was a very nice place and the second largest district in Hong Kong. There were many boats that you can rent that will bring you to several islands around the area. When I roamed the area further, I saw a lot of dogs! Nice and cute dogs that were being toured within the vicinity. I looked for the restaurant Fiesta Fiesta and had my early dinner and it was a treat from Wendel's mom. The foods were really great and the atmosphere was very calm. I even noticed a special touch and design with the food preparation. Twas two thumbs up!

Sing & Run

Shut up! That was my initial reaction when I was requested to sing in an acoustic night. It was a special event within the subdistrict of Hope Church. I thought they were making fun of me but hey, it was for real! Eventually I agreed to join since I will be performing only one song and it was a duet. The song title was "Kahit Kailan" by the Southborder and I did the part of Jay Durias. Suddenly, my college moments flashed back to me. Twas the time when my college friends used to tease me that I have a resemblance of Jay Durias. What the heck?! Anyway, the rehearsal went on but a week before the performance night, I got sick. I was having a hard cough with matching sorethroat. I wasn't able to attend the last 2 practices. So the 15th of May came and it was an instant nervous feeling. But with God's help, I was able to perform and I was confident singing my piece with Angel who did the part of Brix. I just finished all the performances of our band, Band Aid and i left immediately the place to meet a friend.

After two months of preparation, the 10K Marathon came last 22nd of May. I was with good friends and churchmates who came all prepared and excited. They wore the uber pangit sando, sorry but I really hated the racing shirt provided by the organizing committee. The race went smooth for the first 7.5k, I ran non stop and the phasing was perfect. Then an uneasiness came as the road narrows. I had difficulty to run as some of the racers were walking and blocking the runway. But in the end I finished the race and it was a good feeling moment. Super dinner came as we headed to this buffet steamboat but before arriving to the place, we walked almost 3k. But it was worth it as the foods were really great!

Macau Trip - Day 1

I was supposed to visit Macau last year of December but it wasnt' pushed through because of some important decisions that changed my life this year. Enough of the drama and let's go straight to the wonderful trip I had in Macau. Actually, it was an "anniversary" trip for the four of us, I was with Ate Vinz, Gilyn and Razel. Same companion I had last year with my Cambodia trip. This will be a tradition and we will also have our trip by next year in holy week. It was April 2nd and as we arrived in Macau, it was cold. We went directly to the hotel and left our baggage for a while then we roamed the streets of Asia's largest destination for gambling.

We were first got lost but eventually we found our paths. The structures were a mixture of old and new architectures that are superb in style. On our way, we passed by several churches. St. Lawrence's Church which is an imposing structure, standing in a garden filled with palm trees and can be approached from the rear or by way of grand staircase and ornamental gate, to lend a dignified appearance. Next was the St. Augustine's, a simple, neoclassical church of 16th century. We also saw St. Dominic's church which has an imposing facade of cream-coloured stone with stucco mouldings and green shuttered windows. Of course, the very famous Ruins of St. Paul's which is only a magnificent stone facade and grand staircase remain of the iconic Church of St. Paul.

Also notable place was the Senado Square, it is a destination for the locals and tourists and can be tagged as meeting place. The famous fountain was renovated several times and currently, a celestial globe as used by pioneering Portuguese seamen can be seen in the middle of the fountain, captivating sight under lighting at night. The square is also popular place for holding all sorts of cultural events.

On the same day, we visited the Museum of Macau which is on the hill of the Fortaleza do Monte, a 16th century fort in Macau. The museum presents the history of the city and territory of the former Portuguese colony of Macau, now a SAR of PRC. The museum building is located within the interior of the fortress. The displays were mostly the historic event of Macau and the process of progression. The displays were quite nice, we were also surprised that most of the guards there were Filipinos. There was a kinda scary room in the museum but something really cool about the place was the headset on some of the displays with English, Cantonese and Portuguese translations.

We had our lunch then went back to hotel to change clothes and made some preparations. The last destination that day was the popular The Venetian Macau. Good thing there was a free shuttle near our hotel. The major aim why we visited this place is because of it's grand architectural design inside and out of the resort. We tried the funny ride of Gondola and the singer assigned to us was a Filipina with a golden voice. We passed by the casino area and the smell was ultra high in cigarettes. The place was really magical in design and very big. We almost got lost in looking for a Starbucks outlet. It was a very tiring day but it was worth it!

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