Sharing all things about pet-friendly travels and full-time work from home setup

Wonderin' what kind of coffee is this. Perfect for my eleven p.m to eight a.m shift!

It is  not easy  to work  night shift. Been doing that for six years!  I drink  one  or two cups almost  everyday in my life that just recently I slowed down and prefered teas instead but I always find myself slurping a coffee!  It is like saying , what-is-life-without-coffee to  what-is-Earth-without-the-Sun drama. 

Photo taken from his link

Barbara's Restaurant Buffet Dinner with Cultural Presentation at Intramuros

Wanna  feel what it is like to eat in a fine dining vintage restaurant & watch  the country's cultural dances?   Come  to  Barbara's Restaurant!    As described in their website: “Step into a place reminiscent of old world elegance.  Located along the historical General Luna street in Intramuros, the restaurant evokes the charm and beauty of a bygone era. Go up the intricately-carved staircase and you will be greeted by magnificent silver-gilted mirrors. Walk into the main hall and experience the luxury of fine dining. With high ceilings and crystal chandeliers”

About the menus, I leave it to food critics slash bloggers fingertips but all I can say it is a superb fusion of Spanish and Filipino cuisine. More than fifteen dace shows were show while eating the buffet, complete with colorful costumes and screaming dancers! At the end of the show anyone from the audience can join  and dance the Tinikling with them!   To visit their and website know more of their different packages according  to one's  budget and dining preference: Buffet, Plated & Packed Meals, you may click here

Contact Numbers: 

Plaza San Luis Complex: 527-3893 or 527-4086
Orchidarium: 522-9507
Sitio Victoria, Diliman: 932-8534

Photos credit from Eva Zamora 

What’s wrong with being number two?

Anybody ever read the book Tuesdays with Morrie, written by Mitch Albomha in 1997 that topped the New York Times Non-Fiction Bestsellers of 2000?

In a game  when everyone cheers “We are number one! We are number one!” to the basketball team,  Morrie the main character rises up and yells, “What’s wrong with being number two?”

Yeah, what’s wrong with being number two? Tell me.  

Christmas Ek ek!

Was spending some quiet time (actually looking for a free wifi) at the 37h flr w/c is 13 floors up from where I stay. Noticed so many airiplanes passing by almost every minute. Made me wonder how many people really went home  to celebrate Christmas with their family. But in reality I think there are as much as many people who stayed from where they are compared to  those who wernoable  tsneak out not because they dont  wanna  go home but they are not in the position  to.

Jose Rizal's Padre Damaso: To Whom In Real Life He Got the "Bad" Image From

Why in heavens and earths, Jose Rizal choose his villain the "oh-so-great" Padre Damaso as a Franciscan friar?  Did in any point in his lifetime he met a Franciscan friar whom he had bitter memories at all?In Tomas Gomez' III article "The mystery of ‘Padre Damaso:’ An infinitesimal footnote to Philippine cultural trivia"  by Tomas Gomez III" shares about his family background how he can in a way put some light about a Franciscan friar and the Franciscan order.

The Franciscan order is in fact  "renowned for alms-giving, love and care of the poor, and for having established the first hospitals in the Philippines." he added.

Meeting the real Damaso

Tracing back the history, Rizal in 1873 visited Polo, Bulacan and he was 12 years old at that time to see the parish priest of the town whom he described as a “soothsayer,” being consulted on robberies and thefts. All information points to a certain Padre José Huerce, OFM. He was only 26 years old fresh from the seminary in Spain. Calbayog oral history  tells about an amazon-like Waray-Waray fought alongside Padre Huerce against  Moro raiders and she e was Isabel Berdejo. The author continues "She gifted Padre Huerce the honor of fatherhood with three mestizo boys—Antonio, Simon and Juan." Whew! What?

The author is actually the friar's a great-grandson. To read the whole story you may click here

Photo credit from Xtian Devinart

I Am Imeldific!

Flat shoes, doll shoes,  ballerina shoes... I can feel the Imeldific in me sans those killer heels of course! Reminds me of  the Marikina Shoe Museum where you'll see the 1,500+ pairs of shoes of former  First Lady Imelda Marcos

To read more about it you may click here 

History channel’s ”Hidden Cities” will feature The Philippines on Jan. 4, 2012

Anthony Morse, History Channel host  visited the Philippines for  two weeks last Augustto feature the country in one of the  episodes of “Hidden Cities” tv program. Bayani San Diego Jr. of Philippine Daily Inquirer wrote,  “He visited Intramuros and Malacañang Palace in Manila; the World War II island-fortress in Corregidor; the Iwahig prison in Palawan; and the mountain tribal villages in Kalinga.“

He also met  former First Lady Imelda Marcos but  said he didn’t get to check out the legendary shoe collection. On his next visit, he hopes to meet Pres Aquino and Manny Pacquiao. “Those would be dream interviews,” he said.

 To read the whole article  you may click here 

The Philippine Star's Forgotten Philippine treasures in History's Hidden Cities article posted  November 22  said  “Filipinos have much to look forward to from the series, as it includes an hour-long special on the Philippines. Venturing to places that may not even be familiar to locals, the episode offers a fascinating glimpse of the lifestyle, culture and history of the country, from an enriching visit to the Presidential Palace to meet a former First Lady to a revealing jaunt around historic sites that reflect the Philippines’ traditions and roots.“

                                                                To read the whole article  you may click here 

The map of wherAnthony Morse visited the Philippines taken from  History website
To  check the website you may click here 

The Philippine episode of “Hidden Cities” will be aired on the History channel on Jan. 4, 2012. History is available on SKYCable channel 25, Cablelink channel 44, Dream channel 27 and Destiny channel 56


I Need a Break!

Is dreaming of walking in the beach wearing a sundress and watching the sunset barefoot… away from my laptop, smartphone and workstation Just the sad orange glares from the sun, the naughty wind blowing my hair and the chilly fine sand under my feet to comfort me.


Filipiniana Sunsets is a folk dance series at the CCP’s North Promenade from 6PM to 7PM  showcasing the colorful pageantry of local folk songs and dances set against the world famous Manila sunset by different community-based and school-based folk dance groups  that started since October.

Sindaw Philippines Performing Arts Guild on December 7
UP Filipiniana Folk Dance Troupe on December 14 and December 21

For more information, please call CCP Dance Division at tel. no. 832-1125 local 1602.

Haec est Sibylla Cumana: A Book by Rizal

“A compulsive traveler, he frequented parlors, cafes, bewitching pretty ladies, quarreling with rivals like M.H. del Pilar and Antonio Luna, indulging in hugely wide interests, comic tales, butterfly hunting, sunken vessels, even home decor for the family house in Calamba. Jose Rizal continues to surprise us.” says Carmen Guerrero Nakpil in her article she posted in Manila Bulletin Haec est Sibylla Cumana.

Haec est Sibylla Cumana is a book about a parlor game he invented using a character from the ancient Graeco-Roman culture of occult practices, the Sibylla Cumana, seeress and fortune-teller.

Carmen described  it as a Spin-the-Top-and-Learn-Your- Future game, using a wooden top and a list of numbered questions and answers on popular, worldly matters like love, business and relationships. Packed in an old recycled envelop with a New York City address of a machine shop and a family tree sketch,  an octagonal wooden top, questions and answers in Spanish and two hand-drawn portraits of the Sibylla. He later entrusted the materials for playing Sibylla to his sister, Narcisa who visited him in Dapitan. It is only this year, 2011, the year of the National Celebration of the 150th Rizal Birth Anniversary, that the heirs of Paciano Rizal decided to reveal this family heirloom to the nation. [Photo courtesy of Manila Bulletin]

To read the whole story you may click here 

FREE Villancico concert at San Agustin Church in Intramuros, Dec 6 at7:30 pm

    • The historic San Agustin Church in Intramuros, Manila will be the venue for one the most special Christmas presentations of the year. This is "Villancicos ng Paskong Pilipino," a concert featuring Spanish and Filipino "villancicos", December 6 at 7:30 p.m.

      The "villancico" is an old music form from Spain and Portugal that has come to be associated with Christmas. "Villancicos ng Paskong Pilipino" hopes to create awareness about the Filipino villancico heritage and to bring back memories of Christmas celebrations in the Spanish era.

      Performing the villancicos will be the Tiples de Santo Domingo and the Santo Domingo Male Chorale known as the oldest boys' choir in the Philippines conducted by Eugene de los Santos and the Novo Concertante Manila with Arwin Tan as conductor.

Doble Kara: Rizal In Art and Monuments

What is the significance of  The Rizal Monument in the Luneta today?  Let us look back the story behind the monument from its origin in Switzerland to Manila, the bloody history of Luneta or  Rizal Park and listen how  Rizal is re-presented in art and history. Noted historian Ambeth R. Ocampo will give a “ Doble Kara: Rizal In Art and Monuments” 

This will the fourth and last lecture this year by  Dr. Ocampo  on  Dec 3 at the Ayala Museum lobby. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tickets are P350 for adults and P200 for students, senior citizens, teachers and Ayala Museum members. You may call 757-7117 to 21 local 24/25/35 or email

Philippines aims to attain Guinness World Record for Longest Line ofCoins

There is more to look forward this coming Nov. 30 aside from it is Bonifacio Day, a non-working holiday. Lead by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Officers Club and Employees Association, Philippines aims to attain a Guiness World Record for Longest Line of Coins in a project called "Barya ng mga Bayani: The Power of Small Change". At least 5 million of pieces of 25 centavo coins will be lined up and estimated to measure up to 70 kilometers at the Quirino Grandstand in Luneta Park on Bonifacio Day. ------------

Filipinos are invited to volunteer to line up the coins, bring 25 centavo coins and other coin denominations or be a sponsor to one of hte kilometers for only P12, 500. The organizers hope that through this event not only Philippines bag another Guiness title but to "unify Filipinos to unleash the power of small change and the power of unity through small acts starting at collecting and donating coins for nation-building. The collected amounts will then be used to fund construction of classrooms for public elementary schools in the country.------------

Ever wonder why Quirino Grandstand? Well last year's tragic incident about  the hostage of ex-police that killed Hong Kong tourists gave this place a bad impression so hopefully with this event the image will turn to be a lot better. [Image of the  25 Philippine Peso coin taken from Wikipedia]

Seven Minutes!

Was talking to a customer over the phone last night with a very charismatic voice at the start. Took seven minutes before I pulled up his order info only to find out that it’s cancelled. After hearing what happened, his voice changed like a roaring lion.

Him: “Seven minutes? Took you seven minutes before you tell me that? You just wasted seven precious minutes of my life! I would have been undressed and been undressed someone, made a banal conversation and went all out in seven minutes!I would have done something better of my time!” Well in Paulo Coelho’s blog it’s actually 11 minutes long in a post last 11/11/11 but I did not contest. So I said every positive scripts and anything spiel I can explain which now I forgot what it is all about and he calmed down at the end saying “Anyway it is Thanksgiving…” 

Makes me think how many seven-minutes of doing something good have I wasted in my life compared to this man who thinks like I have wasted seven years of his life. 

FREE Foreign Familiar Photography Exhibition at Shangri-La Plaza

    • 10 November – 21 November 2011
      4th floor, Shangri-La Plaza, Mandaluyong.

      Nine photographers from six western countries who lived and worked in different Asian countries and later developed a strong passion andinterest in Asia will showcase exhibition that puts an emphasis on the modern urban environment with its dynamic development and on the frictions which result from these dramatic and exuberant transformations.

      City of Ambition: FERIT KUYAS / Switzerland – China

      Space- In-Between: OLIVIER PIN-FAT / England – Thailand

      Babel: WOLFGANG BELLWINKEL / Germany – Thailand Indonesia – Singapore

      Home: MARRIGJE DE MAAR/ Netherlands – China

      Bangkok Twilight: NICK NOSTITZ/ Germany – Thailand

      Salaryman Project: BRUNO QUINQUET / France – Japan

      Reflections of Chaos and Calm: PETER STEINHAUER / USA – China – Vietnam – Burma

      Rithy, Chéa, Kim Sour et les autres: LAURENCE LEBLANC / France – Cambodia

      Voyage imaginaire au Japon: GRAZIELLA ANTONINI Switzerland – Japan

Visit International Bazaar 2011 at PICC Nov. 20, 2011

International Bazaar is an annual event where imported, local goods and merchandise are sold to the public, the proceeds are used to finance projects to those who are most in need of assistance. Dubbed as a "shoppers' paradise where the diplomatic and consular posts in the Philippines, as well as local entrepreneurs, sell choice and unique merchandise."

International Bazaar 2011 will be at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) Forums I, II and III at the CCP Complex on November 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Tickets are P100 only. Please call them at 833-13-20 / 834-3054 (phone) or email

Maharlika Filipino Moderno Restaurant Featured in NY Times

Maharlika is a gateway restaurant — an exotic excursion with a soft landing, a chance to discover an unsung cuisine without getting too down-and-dirty.” says the writer of Authetic Filipino Moderno review at NY Times. It started in January as a pop-up weekend brunch then finally got a space in August at East Village. The owners — three young Filipino-Americans, Nicole Ponseca, Enzo Lim Noel Cruz, and Dominican chef, Miguel Trinidad.

The ambiance of Maharlika the way it is descibed is very Filipinoish - like one is eating back home: a Capiz shell lamp, blown-up photos of the Filipina Miss Universe of 1973 Margie Moran, flamboyantly painted jeepney and portrait of José Rizal.

They serve Arroz caldo, Adidas, Bangus, Sizzling sisig, Crispy pata, kare kare and Puqui puqui. A free plate of crisp chicken skin may be offered too. I bet everyone will agee with the writer when she says “More suka, please! ”

To read more of the review please click here  or go to  Maharlika’s website here as I am also curious what a Puqui puqui is. (Image taken from NY Times)

FREE Seminar: 19th Defense & Sporting Arms Show

The Association of Firearms & Ammunition Dealers of the Philippines, Inc. will present the 19th Defense & Sporting Arms Show on Nov 17 - 21 from 10:00am to 8:30pm at the Megatrade Halls 1-2 Bldg. B., SM Megamall in Mandaluyong City.

There will be free seminars in this five-day gun show to be offered for gun enthusiast and other visitors.  For more information you may check their Facebook Fan Page here

Puerto Princesa Underground River is 1 of the New Seven Wonders ofNature

The Philippines’ Puerto Princesa Underground River, the Amazon rainforest, Vietnam’s Halong Bay, Argentina’s Iguazu Falls, South Korea’s Jeju Island, Indonesia’s Komodo and South Africa’s Table Mountain were named among the world’s new seven wonders of nature, according to the organizers of New7Wonders, a Swiss foundation.

New7Wonders was founded in 2001 by filmmaker Bernard Weber in Zurich, which is based on the same principle of the seven ancient wonders of the world. More than 440 contenders in 220 countries aspired then trimmed down to a shortlist of 77, then cut to 28 finalists. The final seven were voted via telephone, text messages or Internet social networks.

The results announced are provisional and based on the first count of votes. It is possible that there will be changes until finally  winners are confirmed which will be announced early 2012 according to New7Wonders.

Vote for Puerto Princesa Underground River for New7Wonders of Nature

Puerto Princesa’s Palawan Underground River is among the 28 finalists in an online search for New Seven Wonders of the Nature. Palawan Underground River is a unique and magnificent river located at the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, declared as a World Heritage site by UNESCO and one of the most biodiverse conservation areas in the world. As described in the New7Wonders website, this place features a limestone karst mountain landscape with an 8.2km navigable underground river, reputedly the longest subterranean river in the world with major formations of stalactites and stalagmites inside. At the mouth of the cave, a clear lagoon is framed by ancient trees growing right on the water’s edge.

Started last September 2010 and will end this November 11, 2011, Palawan Underground River  needs more votes against :  Dead Sea, Mt. Kilimanjaro, Maldives, Grand Canyon, Jeju Island, Bay of Fundy, Black Forest, Iguazu Falls, Angel Falls, Yushan, Uluru, Galapagos, Milford Sound, Bu Tinah Island, Great Barrier Reef, Halong Bay, Komodo, Amazon, Mt. Vesuvius, Table Mountain, Masurian Lake District and Mud Volcano. Most of these finalists are found in Europe and Latin America.( Image from New7Wonders website)


Top  Czech films will  be shown al fresco at the Rizal Park Open-Air auditorium this month November 5, 6, 12, 13, Saturdays and Sundays starting at 7pm.  It will showcase a popular children's animation, a family comedy, a retro-musical, a historical drama-romance, and an Oscar winner.

List of Schedule

Free Entrance to Italian Film Festival at Greenbelt 3

Presenting Moviemov: Italian Cinema Now at Greenbelt 3 from November 9-13, 2011. Moviemov is a travelling festival supported by the General Direction for Cinema of the Italian Ministry of Heritage and Culture. Its opening  will be on November 9, 2011 at Greenbelt 5, Fashion Walk. Italian actors, directors and producers such as Dario Argento, Asia Argento, Lina Sastri, Ennio Fantastichini, Gianni Paolucci, Daniele Cipri, Alice Rohrwacher, Camilla Nesbitt, Claudio Cupellini, Carlo Macchitella, Franco Piersanti, and Luciano Sovena will join  together with representatives of Asiatic Film Mediale, headed by Senator Goffredo Bettini, Italo Spinelli and a few local actors.

8:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Opening Gala


BY Nanni Moretti (Italy 2011 - 104’) CAST Michel Piccoli, Jerzy Stuhr, Renato Scarpa

8:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Tribute to Billante Mendoza


BY Brillante Mendoza (Philippines 2008 - 90’) CAST Gina Pareño, Jacklyn Jose, Julio Diaz

10:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 4

Tribute to Dario Argento


BY Dario Argento (Italy 2012 - 20’) CAST Asia Argento, Rutger Hauer and Thomas Kretschmann

5:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Italian Showcase


BY Ferzan Ozpetek (Italy 2010 - 110’) CAST Riccardo Scamarcio, Nicole Grimaudo, Alessandro Preziosi

5:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Italian Showcase


BY Nanni Moretti (Italy 2011 - 104’) CAST Michel Piccoli, Jerzy Stuhr, Renato Scarpa

9:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Italian Showcase


BY John Torturro (Italy 2010 - 88’) CAST John Turturro, Max Casella, Lina Sastri

9:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Tribute to Bernardo Bertolucci


BY Bernardo Bertolucci (Italy 1970 - 115’) CAST Jean-Louis Trintignant, Stefania Sandrelli, Gastone Moschin

4:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Tribute to Dario Argento


BY Dario Argento (Italy 1977 - 112’) CAST Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini, Flavio Bucci

5:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Italian Showcase


BY John Torturro (Italy 2010 - 88’) CAST John Turturro, Max Casella, Lina Sastri

6:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Italian Showcase


BY Claudio Cupellini (Italy 2010 - 100’) CAST Toni Servillo, Marco D’Amore

7:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Italian Showcase


BY Ferzan Ozpetek (Italy 2010 - 110’) CAST Riccardo Scamarcio, Nicole Grimaudo, Alessandro Preziosi

8:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Italian Showcase


BY Marco Bellocchio (Italy 2009 - 128’) CAST Giovanna Mezzogiorno, Filippo Timi and Fausto Russo Alesi

9:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Tribute to Bernardo Bertolucci


BY Bernardo Bertolucci (Italy 1972 - 136’) CAST Marlon Brando, Maria Schneider, Maria Michi

2:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Italian Showcase


BY Claudio Cupellini (Italy 2010 - 100’) CAST Toni Servillo, Marco D’Amore

4:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Tribute to Billante Mendoza


BY Brillante Mendoza (Philippines 2009 - 110’) CAST Anita Linda, Rustica Carpio, Tanya Gomez

5:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Italian Showcase


BY Marco Bellocchio (Italy 2009 - 128’) CAST Giovanna Mezzogiorno, Filippo Timi and Fausto Russo Alesi

6:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Italian Showcase


BY Alice Rohrwacher (Italy 2011 - 98’) CAST Salvatore Cantalupo, Anita Caprioli, Renato Carpentieri

7:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Italian Showcase


BY Gennaro Nunziante (Italy 2011 - 97’) CAST Checco Zalone, Isabelle Adriani, Nabiha Akkari

9:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Tribute to Bernardo Bertolucci


BY Bernardo Bertolucci (Italy 1987 - 160’) CAST John Lone, Joan Chen and Peter O’Toole

3:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Italian Showcase


BY Alice Rohrwacher (Italy 2011 - 98’) CAST Salvatore Cantalupo, Anita Caprioli, Renato Carpentieri

3:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Italian Showcase


BY Gennaro Nunziante (Italy 2011 - 97’) CAST Checco Zalone, Isabelle Adriani, Nabiha Akkari

5:00 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 5

Tribute to Dario Argento


BY Dario Argento (Italy 1975 - 126’) CAST David Hemmings, Daria Nicolodi, Gabriele Lavia

5:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Tribute to Brillante Mendoza


BY Brillante Mendoza (Philippines 2009 - 110’) CAST Coco Martin, Maria Isabel Lopez, Julio Diaz

9:30 PM - Greenbelt 3 Cinema 3

Tribute to Bernardo Bertolucci


BY Bernardo Bertolucci (Italy 2003 - 130’) CAST Michael Pitt, Louis Garrel and Eva Green

 For more information you may check their Facebook Fan Page   here  or or Embassy of Italy in Manila site here

Jose Rizal and Switzerland

    • “Nothing more than a free spot for making out”, this is what Historian Ambeth Ocampo joking as he describes Luneta Park today. This place used to be valued for its historical significance but people seemed to have lost appreciation for “useless” things like this. In Jose Rizal and Switzerland talk, Ambeth shared though Rizal stayed for 3 weeks, nothing much has been written about it in his diaries. However, one link that Switzerland has to the Philippines is that the Rizal Monument was made by Richard Kipling a Swiss who won the second prize for the design competition of this monument.

      Manila was very boring in the 18th century that after the early morning mass every Sunday, going to Luneta Park and watching a human execution is considered an amusement! Rizal was not the only hero executed in Luneta Park. The three priest martyrs Gomburza whom Rizal said “if not because of what happened to them I would have been a Jesuit” was also executed there through a garrote in 1972. That time Rizal was 11, Bonifacio 9, Mabini 8, Luna 6 and Aguinaldo was 3 years old. Jacinto and Del Pilar were not even born!

      One would notice that at the very back end of Luneta Park is the Lapu-Lapu Monument that is even taller and bigger than Rizal Monument! What is the point of calling it as Rizal Park or when it is shared by other personality? Ambeth said he has nothing against with this brave warrior from Cebu but it is just geographically right to relocate this anywhere not just here in Luneta Park.

      Gomburza and Rizal not only shared same place where they were executed but also the place where they were buried in Paco. Rizal is said to have prepared his death very much that he even told the soldiers to hit him with the riffle bullets in the backbone so he can be quickly killed that shortening the agony of being killed! He instructed to be buried in the ground, place a stone and cross in his tomb, fences ok with him and NO anniversaries please. All of these are were followed except the last one that even the country’s presidents do it.

      As Ambeth ends his talk, he said “Rizal was only 26 when he wrote his novel El Filibusterismo. He wrote 26 volumes of books to sadly… a nation that does not read those.”

"Jose Rizal and Switzerland" at Yuchengco Museum

RIZALizing the Future Culminating Event
Jose Rizal and Switzerland
Saturday, 29 October 2011

3:00 - 5:30 p.m.

Guest speakers: Ambeth Ocampo, Ambassador Maria Theresa Lazaro, and My Rizal 150
Presented in partnership with the Swiss Embassy

Symbolically linking Switzerland and the Philippines are the emblematic figures of two national heroes, Wilhelm Tell and Jose Rizal. Rizal translated into Tagalog Friedrich Schiller’s drama Wilhelm Tell, who embodied the values and ideals for which Rizal gave his life. In his lecture on “Jose Rizal and Switzerland,” Ambeth Ocampo will talk about Rizal’s links to Switzerland. Relations between the Philippines and Switzerland can be traced back to the early 19th century, when Swiss traders, missionaries, and travelers ventured into Southeast Asia. Since the establishment of a Swiss consulate in Manila—the first official representation of Switzerland in Asia—in 1862, exchange between the two countries has flourished. In her lecture on “Switzerland and the Philippines,” Ambassador Maria Theresa Lazaro will discuss the 150 years of diplomatic and trade relations, development cooperation, and cultural exchange between the two countries.

To Read My Review of this Talk "Jose Rizal and Switzerland" Please Click Here

Open to public and with admission (P100 for adults, P50 for students, P25 for children and senior citizens). Ambeth Ocampo's books on Jose Rizal will be available for sale, and a small reception to meet the speakers follows the program.For details, call Yuchengco Museum at 889-1234 or email

The Filipino Twins by Lucy Fitch Perkins

Sharing you a children's book now a collector's item The Filipino Twins by Lucy Fitch Perkins published i n1923. It is very well researched as if it had been written by someone who had visited the Philippines when the author has never been here! Like “It was a busy place,” she wrote about a dock along the Pasig River. “Men were unloading fish and vegetables from other boats…. Other men were piling the produce on carts drawn by carabaos and hurrying away to the markets. Scores of boats were tied along the banks, and in and out and up and down the waterway busy tugs plied back and forth, filling the air with the screams of their whistles and with smoke from their stacks…. There were also ships just sailing away loaded with sugar, tobacco, lumber, hemp, and coconuts.” Except that the family carabao is named Bobtail and the dog Dingo.

The Filipino Twins is part of a series of 26 children's books (1910 - 1930) known as "The Twins Books" about the usual topic always attached to a Filipino setting - struggles of a family to overcome the poverty that threatens them. Most of the stories are twins (The Dutch Twins, The Japanese Twins, The Irish Twins etc) composed of one boy and one girl, the only exception is The Spanish Twins , which is about two boys. Each book took place in a different country or time in America's past. These books are now hard to find now hard to find You're lucky if you have one of these!

New Philippine Peso Bills as One of the Best Currency Series in theWorld

Yahoo News Philippines reports despite its design errors, the new Philippine peso bills called the "New Generation Currency (NGC)" series has been judged as one of the best currency series in the world in an international design competition by the International Association of Currency Affairs (Iaca). 

Sri Lanka bagged the Best Currency Award. Uganda's new series of rupees is one of the finalists as well. IACA is an international organization of central banks, currency-issuing authorities, currency producers and suppliers.  To read more of the news you may click here

FREE Admission: Taiwan Film Festival 2011 at Shangri-La Plaza

 October 21
No Puedo Vivir Sin - 2:00pm
Zoom Hunting - 5:00pm
Gangster Rock - 8:00pmOctober 22
The Magical Washing Machine - 2:00pm
Gangster Rock - 5:00pm
Three Times - 8:00pm
October 23
Zoom Hunting - 2:00pm
Pinoy Sunday - 5:00pm
No Puedo Vivir Sin Ti - 8:00pm

October 24
Three Times - 2:00pm
Jump! Boys - 5:00pm
Pinoy Sunday - 8:00pm

October 25
Gangster Rock - 2:00pm
No Puedo Vivir Sin Ti - 5:00pm
The Magical Washing Machine - 8:00pm

October 26
Jump! Boys - 2:00pm
The Magical Washing Machine - 5:00pm
Zoom Hunting - 8:00pm

For more information, you may check their Facebook Fan Page here

Watch Película: The 10th Spanish Film Festival

Twenty films from Spain and Latin America are now showing from October 5 to 16 at Greenbelt 3 Cinema 1 to celebrate Película, the annual Pelicula Spanish film festival in Manila. There will be special screenings of films: Raya Martin's Buenas noches, España (Good night, Spain) and the classic 1961 Golden Palm Cannes Film Festivalwinner, Viridiana. After watching, you may vote for your favorite film and help it win the Audience Choice Award this year. The screening of the winning film is on October 16, 9:30 p.m. Tickets are at P65 each.

For more information about 10th Pelicula Spanish film festival, visit

An Introduction to Writing About Arts & Culture Writing Workshop

With the growing art scene in Manila and the increasing number of Filipino artists receiving international attention, it is only appropriate to shine the spotlight on Philippine arts, culture, and heritage. Learn how to share and write about these topics to a wider audience. Get an overview of the different fields and opportunities in writing about arts and culture–be it visual arts, architecture, theater, music, or design.” - Writer’s Block Philippines 

An Introduction to Writing About Arts & Culture
October 8 (Sat), 9 am-6pm
November 7, 10, & 14 (Mon-Thu-Mon), 6-9pm
Workshop Fee: P3,500 (10% off WBP members & 15% off for students)

The Yuchengco Museum and Writer’s Block Philippines are offering “Writing About Arts and Culture,” a series of writing workshops that bring together writing skills development, cultural information, and art appreciation. The first workshop in the series will be facilitated by Yuchengco Museum curator Jeannie Javelosa and administrator Dannie Alvarez, alongside Writer’s Block founders Ana Santos, Nikka Sarthou, and Niña Terol-Zialcita. Interested participants can choose either the weekend workshop on October 8, or the weeknight series for three nights of November. This will cover:

  • An overview of Philippine arts, culture, and heritage in contemporary life
  • Telling the story of arts and culture
  • Asking the right questions
  • Q&A, case studies, and a writing exercise

Slots are limited to only 30 participants. The workshop fee is P3,500, which includes snacks, workshop materials, and a certificate. For registration and more details, contact Yuchengco Museum at 889-1234 or email

Be Part of The 30 Postcards Project

This is one of the four postcards sent to Kevin Richberg who is the one behind the travel and tourism project, The 30 Postcards Project. Kevin is inviting everyone to write ANYTHING they want about their city, country, favorite travel spot or just something worthy to be shared. It could something strange, unique, interesting, special, intellectual, odd, fascinating, crazy, controversial, weird, amazing, silly or one of a kind. Something you love, something you hate, something you can't resist, something you can't live with, something you can't live without or something you just have to tell the World!

By the way, this postcard features the Cave Porn in Sagada, Philippines. According to The 30 Postcards Project website, the cave’s official name is the Sumaging Cave found in Luzon. Lonely Planet featured the cave as a top Adventure Tourist destination, but not because of the “unique” formations. The cave is a living cave (it has water with dissolved minerals that grow the cave flowing through it) and it offers spelunking, swimming, waterfalls, and taking your photograph next to formations that can appear “naughty” from the right perspective.

Kevin will be coming to Manila in September to film personally the places sent by the postcards and be included in The 30 Postcards Project. Anyone interested to send postcards, this is his mailing address :

Kevin Richberg

P.O. Box 83

Memphis, NY 13112 USA

Anyone who wants to participate in any way or works in the tourism or travel business and want to support the project this is his email address:

Uncovering Controversial Facts about Jose Rizal

“Rizal’s first reason when he entered UST is to study for priesthood.” says Dr. Paul Domol, a playwright and history professor at the University of Asia and the Pacific. Rizal took Metaphysics as a first year student which is a prerequisite course for anyone wanting to be a priest at University of Santo Tomas at that time. But when his mother’s eyesight starts to fail, he shifted to Medicine on his second year to cure hers. And when he went to Spain, he continued to study Medicine and at the same time Humanities, so basically Rizal at the start seems like he does not know where his heart is.

The Beginnings of Rizal’s Anti-Friar Sentiments                                               As early as he is a first year student, Rizal really wanted to be known as a writer and the only way he can be is to learn and write through Spanish language. The very first time Rizal is known to viciously attack the friars is through his exchange of letters to his brother Paciano, whom the latter informing Fr. Leoncio Lopez the Parish Priest of Calamba at that time just died. Ambeth Ocampo, another historian shared a similar revelation about Fr. Lopez, is actually the biological father of Antonino Lopez, the husband of one of Rizal’s sisters, Saturnina. Antonino used to be introduced as a nephew of the priest in public.

Rizal the Apostate                                                                                                                         In 1883 Rizal while in Madrid, he received a letter from his mother asking him if the rumors that she heard is true that he has stopped attending mass, receiving sacraments and stuff. Rizal replied as though he is lecturing his mother. He said that technically he is not a Catholic anymore, does not believe in Bible and the God that the Catholics believe. The God that he believes is the God that his human mind can reach.

Rizal the Party Pooper                                                                                                             There was an incident during New Year’s Eve that each one in the celebration is asked what food to share but when he was told what specifically he can bring, he took off his hat, and approached everyone like a beggar extending his hand and asks them to drop a coin inside his hat. In another party, Rizal also scolded Filipinos in Madrid who spend more time womanizing, gambling etc. instead of studying and making something worthy to their country.

Visited the house replica of Rizal in Dapitan where he lived and met Josephine Bracken. Click here for details

The untitled last Chapter of El Filibusterismo                                                         All throughout the chapters of Fili are all about against the Spanish government and friars but the last chapter is the opposite. Not only it is untitled but it tells something against the Filipinos themselves. He said Filipinos should not be given freedom until they’re worthy of it.

Rizal as a Playboy                                                                                                                            He is not, but it is true that he loved a lot of women. In one of his letters, he shows his brotherly care to one of his sisters whom he heard always going away with his boyfriend and reminding her to be careful.

Rizal as Hero                                                                                                                                    There was no 'hero'  word nor a meaning of it ever existed during his time. It was through him that he defined his word which is giving one's life to a bunch of people whom most of them he does not know. The term 'hero' only started to exist in the early 1900's.

Photowalk with my brother in Rizal Park and Intramuros, please click here for full story

Rizal and his Retraction to Anti-Catholic ideas                                               Yes, he retracted and went back to his faith. When he wrote his retraction, he signed a Catholic prayer book, recited Catholic prayers,  and a few eyewitness saw him kiss the crucifix before his execution.

Rizal's Relevance Today                                                                                                      While in Dapitan, he opened a school and gave free education to 18 boys. He also setup a free clinic for those with eyesight problems. He made a lighting system, water system using bamboos, adding benches and made a map of Mindanao.

Taken from Dr. Paul Domol's lecture "Controversial Facts About Rizal: Notes Towards a New Rizal Biography" at the Yuchengco Museum September 17, 2011 (Saturday) 3pm. Dr. Domol is also best known for his play "Ang Paglilitis ni Mang Serapio" as his best if not one his bet literary masterpieces. Part of RIZALizing the Future, in celebration of the 150th birth anniversary of Jose Rizal and the 100th anniversary of the Yuchengco Group of Companies (YGC).

Photo source:

Travelife's Sri Lanka FREE Public Performance

Watch Sri Lanka's top performers including their famous songstress free in Travelife's Sri Lanka Free Public Performance on September 24 (Saturday), 4PM  at The Picar Place Showroom. Organized by Travelife Magazine together with the Embassy of Sri Lanka, this is surely a night of cultural event that should not be missed!

 For inquiries and reservations, please call 813-8400 / 892-2620 or see information below:

Bernice Qua
Marketing Coordinator
Travelife Magazine
Tridem Asia Publishing Inc.
Alexander House 2F, 132 Amorsolo St.
Legazpi Village, Makati City
1229 Metro Manila, Philippines

Tel. no: (+63 2) 813-8400, (+63 2) 892-2620
Fax: (+63 2) 893-7539