Showing posts from March, 2008

Back from vacation

I'm back at work, after a week in sizzling Bangkok. I think I'm sunburnt, and I'm still dog-tired, and I'm really happy to be back home. I had a nice time--but more about the trip when I finally get the pictures.

I hardly had any time to go online for fun. We had free wifi, and I brought along my mom's Asus Eee PC, but I only had time for my real work and for some, er, jobs for Dope Wars in Facebook for my pretend work.

A lot of interesting things happened during the trip. I learned a lot about myself.

I can't wait to go on my next one. Homebody me, finally bitten by the travel bug.

In the meantime, however, send me some Facebook love by clicking here:

I ♥ Dope Wars!

English Trainer Chronicles: "Something"

Scene 1: I'm in Manila, at my work station. Learner is in Europe, in what learner calls a "meeting box," which is like a meeting room, but smaller. We are talking about the lesson, and learner is suddenly quiet.

Me: Hello?
Learner: Something is entering my box!
Me: (Instantly alarmed; imagines all sorts of "somethings.") What?
Learner: A colleague.
Me: Oh... (Laughs) You don't use "something" for people!
Learner: I mean, someone!
Me: (Continues laughing) ...
Learner: He is not saying anything. He must not speak English very well.

Two messages from the universe

One, from a British chatmate in Madrid. Another from a French learner in Switzerland. The British guy, when he told me a story. The French learner, simply because she remembered me.

I felt the *tingles* and just knew they were really meant for me.
"In order to change height one must dump ballast."
The words of Bertrand Piccard, a ballonist who circumnavigated the world and set a record. My learner attended his talk, and she said she thought of me. :)
"Getting over means simply to understand there is nothing more because one side says so."
The Brit said, referring to a friend.


Edit, a few minutes later: I messaged another old friend on YM, and got this from her Multiply blog.

Whee. Whee. (And whee, all the way home.)

Good night!

English Trainer Chronicles: Nice saves

Last night, I fell asleep with a cross between a smile and a giggle thinking of these exchanges.

Nice save #1:

Me: Would you like to talk about some English song lyrics? Pick a song.
Learner: I don't really hear English lyrics.
Me: You don't hear English lyrics? Remember the difference between hear and listen?
Learner: Yes, I remember. I meant to say I'm deaf.

Nice save #2:

For a lesson on phrasal verbs.

Me: So, tell me about the last time you showed off.
Learner: The last time I showed off was a long time ago.
Me: Go on...
Learner: I was 80.
Me: 80? How old are you now?
Learner: 31.
Me: So, what comes first, 80 or 31?
Learner: I was talking about a past life. I can still remember it. So, in my past life, I was 80, and I had a new cane...

I ♥ my job.

Missing UP

I can still remember how, before college, studying at the University of the Philippines was somewhat of a myth. My mom was teaching chemistry at De La Salle University-- another university close to my heart and my soon-to-be graduate school alma mater, if things go well--but mass media (movies like Moral and songs of the The Eraserheads) really sold me to the idea of going to UP.

Five years in Diliman, however, can take its toll on a suburban girl like me. Manila is no picnic either, but it's just one comfortable bus ride away from my village, so I chose to go to DLSU for my MFA.

But I've been missing UP lately. I think this a feeling that most alumni get every so often, and this is why they keep going back. I wasn't able to go to the Centennial celebrations, and I've backtracked on numerous plans to go there for whatever. It's high time I go back for a visit, I think--and the universe is giving me signs!

To begin with, this article, written by Gilda Cordero Fernando, was published in today's paper: A gourmet’s guide to UP and other concerns.

At my age, I'm more of the Chocolate Kiss and Chateau Verde type, but I miss these two places:

The best barbecue on campus, however, is found in Beach House beside the Main Library. Unfortunately they’re open only for lunch. But there’s Kha’s place in the arcade near the swimming pool. It serves Middle Eastern food. Their specialties are rice biryani and ox brain soup and they have lassi.
Sadly, though, it doesn't mention this hole-in-the-wall Thai eatery I discovered through my orgmate Vincent Coscolluela. I suppose that one's long gone, because when my MFA classmates and I went there a couple of years ago, upon the insistence of Allan Popa, the place was nowhere to be found.

We did manage to have this picture taken, though:

My DLSU friends and circa-DLSU-again me, posing at the AS Steps, a la Moral. It didn't seem cool to do it when I was actually a student! Besides, we didn't have digital cameras back then! Left to right: Candy Villanueva, Razel Estrella, Heizel Mainar, Jonathan Siason, Allan Popa, and me.

Also, yesterday, this pleasant coincidence:

I forgot I had my own, but wearing it would have been too contrived anyway.

More here.

Les amants d'un jour

This came from my French learner, and I am now sharing this with a certain Paul Kurrien in mind. Hihihi.

And for the English version:

Cute dog, by the way.

The lyrics:

Les amants d'un jour
English Version -- translator unknown

Shine another glass make the hours pass
Working every day in a cheap café
Who am I to care for a love affair?
Still I can't forget I can see them yet

They came hand in hand, why can't I forget?
For they'd seen the sign that said "Room to Let"
The sunshine of love was deep in their eyes
So young, oh so young, too young to be wise
They wanted a place a small hideaway
A place of their own if just for one day

The walls were so bare, the carpet so thin,
But they took that room and heaven walked in
And I closed the door and turned to depart
With tears in my eyes and tears in my heart

Shine another glass make the hours pass
Working every day in a cheap café
Who am I to care, one more love affair?
Love is nothing new I have work to do

We found them next day, the way they had planned
So quiet, so cold, but still hand in hand
The sunshine of love was all they possessed
And so in the sunshine we laid them to rest
They sleep by side two children alone
But I'm sure they've found a place of their own

So why must I see the ribbon she wore
The glow on his face as I closed the door
Be still children, still, your shadows may start
The tears in my eyes and tears in my heart

Shine another glass make the hours pass
Working every day in a cheap cafe
Evrything is fine 'till I see that sign
How can I forget -- it says "Room to Let."

(And the sound of glass breaking.)

Flowers and weeds

On my way to work, I decided to walk on the Bellevue Hotel side. Beside it is an empty lot, and these made me smile.

I don't know what they're called, but they sure look pretty.

This makes me think of my childhood. And reminds me of UP.

I uploaded a few more here.

An almost empty pot of hand cream

One of the small excitements of my life: cleaning out a pot of hand cream (or a jar/bottle of body lotion). It takes me so long to finish an entire jar (think years), it's always an achievement when I reach this point!

If I'm not mistaken, this is only the second pot I've completely used up in my entire life.

Just a tiny little dollop left.

No more! Yay!