Archive for November, 2011

WE ROAM – Travel Photobook

Posted: November 16, 2011 in Blog, Photobook, Travel
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To roam is to search for something new, going halfway around the world to places you have never been.

Covering a great distance in the shortest period of time or a short distance in a great period of time.

They say that the journey can be more important than the destination, on a journey there is no destination.

– excerpts from ROAM

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All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

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Baguio, You’ve Never Seen!
Part2
ITLog No. 12
(28 October – 1 November, 2011)

Woke up around 0600hrs to prepare ourselves and hear mass at St. Vincent Parish at 0830hrs. After hearing mass we headed downtown to The Café by the Ruins and have an early lunch, after settling in our chairs, we ordered some coffee (I had a pot of herb tea) and had some cheese lumpia straws, yogurt with fresh fruits for our appetizers to pass the time we were seated. We then ordered Longlife Tofu Pockets, Baguio Bagnet with Tomatoes and Padas, Bistek Tagalog, Fresh Lumpia, Arroz Montañosa and Kintuman Rice for lunch. While eating it started to rain and thought that after eating we would just stay home and laze around. After our lunch, we ordered Lime Sorbet for dessert.

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It was still raining when we went out of the restaurant, so we took a cab and headed back home to rest. At dinner time we ate some Baguio Longganisa, watched some episodes on TV, then retired to bed.

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We woke up early to prepare ourselves, ate longganisa and fried rice with eggs for breakfast, and by 0900hrs, we left the house and headed for Dominican Hill to see the Famous 10 Commandments which they say is included in the Guinness World Records. Arriving at the place, we headed first for the ruins onThe former Diplomat Hotel in Baguio City, Philippines sits on top of the Dominican Hill. It used to be a rest house and a seminary way back 1911 before it was developed into a hotel.

During the World War II, numerous nuns and priests were beheaded there and this was believed to be the reason why headless apparitions can often be seen during the night inside the hotel. The employees and guests also claimed that they have been hearing strange sounds.

Since the death of its owner, Spiritual Healer Tony Agpaoa, in 1987, the hotel ceased its operation and has been closed to the public. It was declared off limits to visitors as well. However, the people who are living nearby would often be disturbed by sounds coming from the Dominican Hill at night. They would hear banging of doors and windows, clattering of dishes and voices of screaming people, who seem to be agonizing.

A lot of documentaries have been written about this mysterious and panoramic building. Until now, a lot of curious people would like to see its ruins in person, the once grand hotel, which boasts of its large rooms and striking combination of qualities.

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Then just beside Diplomat Hotel is where they erected a building and on its sides is where they painted the 10 Commandments. I was hoping that it would look bigger and more looking like a landmark but was disappointed when it was just painted on the sides.

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Walking down Diplomat Hill Road, we then headed for the our Lady of Lourdes Grotto, where we gave thanks and took some photos, then walked down the steps and while waited for a jeep to take us to the center of the city, we had buko juice to quench our thirst.

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Walking along the side streets heading to Session Road, I remembered a place, where in high school we would eat our lunch and make us full and the price is cheap. Located in Diego Silang Street, Cathy’s Fastfood started their business in 1980, and still is serving their signature dish to this, which I think would be really good for mountaineer, it is called “Cathy’s Rice”, this is a plate of rice with a piece of chicken, a good serving of veggies (cooked chop suey style) and fried egg, which is what I ordered while carol had Lechon Rice. Upon serving our food in the table, we found that even though the Lechon was covered with the sauce of the veggies, it was still crispy and you could still hear the chicharon popping. And they serve other good tasting food, compared to Jack’s Diner, for Cathy’s Fastfood is better!

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After our fulfilling lunch, we walk around Baguio, passing thru the Former Skyworld Building, where it is now an Ukay-Ukay center, we also passed-by Casa Vallejo and wanted to see Cinemathique, but it was closed for the Holiday. Heading up to SM Baguio, where be bought some grocery and would be cooking our dinner which is pasta with basil. Arriving home and then preparing the pasta, we headed out to market to buy all those pabilins and pasalubong so we would not go out anymore the next day. Heading back home, and fixing our things, we rested for a while, after which we ate our dinner.
Then next morning was just spent at home telling stories with my parent, and then prepared lunch of left overs the previous nights. Leaving the house at around 1500hrs, we headed for the Victory Bus Station and waited for our time to board the bus, boarding it at around 1700hrs, and headed back to Manila.

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It was a great time spending time with my parents, having some bonding time with them (since I was always at work in Manila, and could not spend most of my time with them). Saying our goodbyes would always be hard and would hear a comment “dalawa nalang ulit kami, di na magulo dito,” but they would be also happy and would look forward to our return every time. And that return would be soon!

Till our next travel…
HAPPY TRAILS!!

All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

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Baguio, You’ve Never Seen!
Part1
ITLog No. 12
(28 October – 1 November, 2011)

After my last day from the company I have been working for, for the past 11 years, I promised my parents that I would be visiting them and would stay with them longer than the usual 2day visit that I do, we headed for the Victory Bus Station and took our 2320hr bus reservation up to Baguio. Arriving in Baguio at 0530hrs and bought tickets for our trip back to Manila, so we would not go back again to the station and buy our tickets. Took the taxi going home and upon arriving in the house we rested a bit for our next destination later in the day.

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We would not only visit my parents in Baguio, but to see other places not usually visited by visitors in Baguio, unlike Mines View, Wright Park, Mansion House which visitors to Baguio often flock to, I have been searching the web and found a couple of nice places to go to, including the Balatoc Mine Tour.

Woke up around 0800hrs and prepared to go mine touring, left the house at around 0900hrs ad headed to downtown Baguio, we took the jeep going to Acupan, in front of the Petron Gas Station beside Baguio Chinese Patriotic School, which costs Php25.00 each and took our seats in the jeep. After the jeep was full, we headed for Acupan passing thru Loakan Road.

We were dropped off at the tow of Balatoc and walked our way to the entrance to where the Mine Tour is, asking the guard on duty if we could join the tour. After a phone call, we were escorted to the Staging Area of the tour near the Balatoc Tourism Office. After registering our names and paying Php250 per person, we were issued our tags or what they call “chapa”, this is what miners are given to identify each miner going inside the mines. I was issued number 137006 BC and carol chapa is 137007 BC, then we were issued wellington rubber boots and hardhats for our safety, I was asking why there are no miner’s light were issued to us, and they said that we would not need it because the mine is well lighted.

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Benguet Corporation was established in 1903 as a “sociedad anomina,” known as “Benguet Consolidated Mining Company.” It pioneered with the first modern mining operation in the Philippines when it opened the Antamok Mines in 1908 at Benguet province.

In the 1920s, the Company introduced a profit-sharing system with small mining companies and individual owners around the Itogon area, wherein with this technical expertise and financial resources, it would bring into production promising mining properties, which would otherwise be left idle because of lack of capital and engineering know-how.

It was during this formation that it required interest in the Balatoc and Acupan Mines, which led to the formation of the Balatoc Mining Company.

Perhaps, the new company’s charm was in the name “Balitoc” which is the igorot word for gold and the igorots had certainly managed to mine gold out of the mountains.

In 1956, the company was incorporated under the name Benguet Consolidated Inc. and later renamed “Benguet Corporation” in 1980.

Its new corporate name Benguet Corporation spearheaded a diversification of operations in different parts of the country. This was when the original underground mines named the Benguet Gold Corporation.

The glorious moments of the BGC have been seriously threatened in the late 60s with the decline in metal prices ad increase in operating cost.

The problem was aggravated more when a major portion of its Acupan underground was flooded as a result of the July 16, 1990 earthquake that has an intensity of 7.8 in the Richter scale.

The Balatoc Mines Tour is the first show mine in the Philippines and thus said to be the most unique attraction. The mine site once had nine main levels and nine sublevels. The entrance of the mine is at 600meters above sea level, the lowest level is at 425meters below sea level, 1.025meters below the entrance. Access to lower levels was provided by a mine-shaft.

The Mine Tour is planned to resemble the daily life of the miners, so it starts with the issuing of Chapa, which serves as an ID to the miners. These chapas will tell whether a miner still has not left the mines and will also reveal where one is trapped inside the mine in case of a cave-in.

We started the tour near the statue of “The Miner”, then proceeded along the rail tracks to where they bring out the Gold Ores. After showing us all the equipment used, we then proceeded to enter the mine entrance known as the Vegas Tunnel. Our Guide, Derehlene Ayson, showed and explained to us what the miners do and use, how they work in the cave and what miners usually do on emergencies. We reached a part of the tunnel where we were introduced to Bartolome Toyoken, who I is a miner here in Itogon for 35 years and was honored by an award in Malacañang. He showed us how the drill works and even showed me how to operate it.

We then headed to the part of the cave where they set up some blast pattern on the wall and showed us how to install dynamites inside the bored holes and how the dynamite should be triggered to blast to be effective, then Mr. Toyoken went to a part of the mine to light up a dynamite, which would be the highlight of the tour, but since he was not the one who set-up the dynamite it miss fired and went back to set it up again. This time we could hear a heavy thud and a gush of air passing thru us indicating that the blast has occurred (and he just used half a stick of dynamite), what more if it was more than one stick of dynamite. Upon feeling the blast of the dynamite, we were given samples of rocks where you could see some glittering stuff which they call “fool’s gold”, then you could here the mine cart coming which will take us out of the cave just like mine ores.

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Going back to the main center where we were issued our certificates indicating that we have completed the tour of the Balatoc Mines and then getting to know the tour guides and getting their names, I told them the one reason I wanted to visit the Balatoc mine was, because my Grandfather worked here as head of the Power House, and they say you are always known for our alias and the alias of my lolo was tisoy because he looks like a foreigner.

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Saying our good-byes to our guides, we headed out to and wanted to try some local foods, so we ended up in a local eatery where we ordered white beans with fish, ginataang tuna, inihaw na liempo and rice. After a hearty lunch we walked back to where we were dropped off by the jeep and took pictures of the locals including their bunk houses, I wanted to go in and see how they live but a vacant jeep arrived and boarded it headed back to Baguio.

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Going down at North Drive, then walked towards Pink Sisters Convent where we said some prayers and thanks for the graces we received, then planned to proceed to Our Lady of Atonement Cathedral, passing along Gen. Luna Road, when I remembered a place where we played in high school that a few people would visit, this was the Emilio Aguinaldo Museum.

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The Emilio Aguinaldo Museum was erected to house personal memorabilia of Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo which include the different uniforms and barong tagalogs he once wore, his photographs and those of his family, a work desk, and the wheelchair which he used when he was confined at the Veterans Memorial Hospital. Also on display is a three-dimensional miniature scene depicting his inauguration as president and a replica of the Philippine flag, which was originally designed by the general, with revolutionary words embroidered on it.

Here is where you could see the original Philippines Flag (due to its old and fragile state, no photos are allowed to be taken inside the museum) is shown, where they say when Marcos declared Martial Law, he tried to seize the Original Philippine Flag, but was hidden in a bank named Monte de Piedad, which was hidden and not properly preserved from element, was almost to fragile when it was discovered and displayed.

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After our tour of the museum we then headed for Our Lady of Atonement CathedralOur Lady of Atonement Cathedral or better known as Baguio Cathedral.

Construction on the cathedral itself was begun in 1920, under the leadership of the then-parish priest, Fr. Florimono Carlu. The building was completed by 1936, and consecrated that year, dedicated to Our Lady of Atonement.

During World War II, the cathedral served as an evacuation center. It withstood the carpet-bombing of Baguio City in 1945. The remains of thousands of bombing victims during the war are interred within the grounds of the cathedral.

The cathedral has a distinct pink facade with a rose window and twin square bell towers with pyramidal roofs.

Within its large courtyard is a view deck that overlooks Session Road and the downtown commercial district of Baguio City. The cathedral is accessible to pedestrians from Session Road through a 100-step stone staircase, or through the adjacent campus of Saint Louis University.

Was not able to take a good photo of the interior of Baguio Cathedral because there was a wedding going on so we just headed back outside and took photos of the exterior of the Cathedral.

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Heading to SM Baguio to have a cold drink and buying some food to take home, after waiting for a cab at the taxi stand we headed back home to rest from the long day we had which was about 1700hrs. Going to bed early to wake up early the next day to hear mass.

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Thanks to:

Benguet Corporation
Balatoc Mine Tour

Our Guides:
Derehlene Ayson
Alma L. Caballero
Bartolome Toyoken

Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo Museum
Geam.info@gmail.com
0918.759.0303
Our Guide:
Noel Ramirez

All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

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Puerto Azul?
ITLog No.11
(22-23 October 2011)

When you think of Puerto Azul, you think of a tourists’ paradise in the outskirts of Ternate town in Cavite, boasts of flowery bushes, verdant hills and forests, blue sea, and fine sand beaches. Here, one can imagine one’s self in the Biblical Garden of Eden (a little bit in the modern era, though).

Situated on the southern entrance to Manila Bay and opposite Corregidor Island is Puerto Azul, a beach resort that offers a breathtaking sight with all its elegance and mystique.

The resort complex, which nestles within a 3,300-hectare nature reserve, houses two entities: the Puerto Azul Beach Hotel and the Puerto Azul Beach and Country Club. The club manages a world-class golf course designed by Gary Player and Ron Kirby and completed in 1978.

Owned by the Panlilio family, a noted cronies of the Marcos’s, which also owns the Grand Boulevard Hotel and the Grand Airways. You could see them being picked up at their beach front house by a helicopter, but debt and foreclosures has hounded the family, and with that came the end of the Beautiful Puerto Azul.

Now what is left of it, are the dilapidated pier, the rundown Clubhouse and the un-kept golf courses with its tall grasses and un-manicured greens.

Never the less, Puerto Azul is still a nice place to go to, to relax peacefully without the maddening crowd and noise!

Till our next trip again!
HAPPY TRAILS!!!

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All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.

Pamilyang Halaan

Posted: November 3, 2011 in Blog

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Ng kami ay nagpunta sa isang dalampasigan para makita ito, may napansin akong isang pamilya na nasa mabatong parte ng dalampasigan at para bang may hinahanap sa mga gitna ng mga bato at inilalagay sa isang malaking lalagyan ng tubig.

Ng aking natanong kung ano ang ginagawa nila doon, ang sagot nila ay…

Sir, nag hahanap lang po kami ng halaan.

Ano po gagawin nyo dyan? Ibebenta nyo po ba?

Di po sir, ito po ay para sa ulam namin.

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Dito ako napaisip, na ang buhay pala sa probinsya ay napaka sarap, dahil ang pagkain ay libre basta matyaga ka lang maghanap at kumuha, at ika’y di magugutom.

Di tulad dito sa syudad na kahit anong pagkakayod mo ay gutom ka parin, at kung wala kang trabaho, lalo kang magugutom.

Bakit nga ba ang mga tao na nasa probinsya ay gustong-gustong pumunta ng syudad, kung ang pamumuhay sa probinsya ay masarap at walang problema, at madali lang makakuha ng pagkain basta matyaga ka lang?

All photos are owned and copyrighted by Joey Rico (also known under these names: alien_scream).
All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized use, copy, editing, reproduction, publication, duplication and distribution of the digital photos, without his explicit permission, is punishable by law

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.