Puerto Princesa in Film

 

I remember the day we booked our tickets for this trip as if it had just happened. It was a rainy December afternoon and I was stuck in traffic with Ralf. I was mindlessly scrolling through my emails when I came across PAL’s announcement for their annual holiday seat sale. I scrambled to sit upright on my seat. I clicked the link and checked our dates for our Palawan trip. Our roundtrip airfare only cost P1600 inclusive of taxes! I opened our Telegram group chat immediately and typed with the speed of light.

“GUYS. ETO NA. SEND ME YOUR DETAILS.”

One by one, the personal details started pouring in. Prior to this, I had never booked a flight through PAL’s mobile website so it was a bit of a challenge since there were 5 tickets in total that I had to buy and not mess up any information. I read it again once, then twice, and one final time before I hit the PURCHASE button. A familiar email ringtone later and I had it: the tickets to our first high school barkada trip together (ever).

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Laguna

It’s become a tradition for me to head over to Los Baños every October for Angela’s birthday. Last year was the first time that my high school friends (minus Louise, Mae Ann and Pauline) reunited for the said trip. We planned months ahead and on Angela’s birthday weekend, piled into Anna’s van and traveled to Laguna.

We only stayed over night but we’re definitely thinking of going back in the future. The farm of Tita Kim was so picturesque, it was hard to put down the Zenit. This photo set doesn’t include alot of events but it captures exactly how the weekend went: a quiet and much needed getaway from busy Manila.

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Sandi’s 23rd

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I’ll be honest, I am a very hard person to please. I think that the life lessons I’ve learned over the years have hardened me as a person. I know exactly what I like/dislike, what I am capable of and most especially, who I choose as my friends. Thankfully, the universe was kind to the angsty, pre-high school me by introducing Sandi into my already-hard life.

Sandi and I have literally been through thick and thin together (we met when I was still a chubby kid but who’s to say that that stage is over?). We graduated grade school, high school, moved to Manila and entered DLSU together. She’s been there for me since the first heartbreak and I’m glad to say that I’m still around for her first love. So many things have happened to us over the past 10 years that fitting them into one post simply isn’t possible.

Sandi was always one for helping others. Probably the most caring person I know, she’s dedicated her life to the betterment of the community. She’s a firm believer in her faith and has been a servant to the poor for as long as I can remember. She and her whole family are so inspiring because all of them share the same values. So when we met up for dinner the week before her birthday, I was not surprised at all that for her 23rd, she decided to plan a special Mural painting Out-reach program with U! Happy Events. The event was at Ospital ng Makati on the 25th of July (yesterday).

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3 weeks prior to this though, I got a Facebook notification that her boyfriend, Ryan, had made a group with all her friends and family. His plan was to collect pictures and messages for everyone and compile them into a super surprise for her. He asked me to help him conceptualise how to present the collected dedications and I suggested that we make them into cards that double as fridge magnets. He gave it to her when we met up at the MRT, right before leaving for Ospital ng Makati.

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Leave it to Sandi for making me come out of my comfort zone and meet new friends as well as reconnect with old ones. I got to spend the morning with Mike and Dianne, her block mates from DLSU that I used to be close to. I was smiling and laughing the whole morning with everyone else. All the good energy definitely uplifted the whole hospital because parents and other children from different rooms were coming to take a peek at the activity.

These pictures were taken by Mike (check out his work here!)  and I just post-processed them for my Twitter account. Still contemplating if I should grab the rest of his pictures and make a full blog post of the day’s events.

Happy happy birthday to my bestest friend! Words can’t describe how much love I have for you. Your light inspires me to shine brighter each and every day.

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