.

If my parents didn’t need me, if I weren’t scared of offending God, and if I didn’t have this speck of tenacious hope left in my spirit, I would have died this year. Like wanted to die. Like actively wished I were dead sort of thing. There were times I’d see glimpses of myself dying in my sleep or wandering aimlessly in a street somewhere being hit by a speeding car or just downright contracting some disease and passing away in MMC.

And no, I don’t say this in a emotard kind of way. I also did not do anything self destructive much as I was tempted to do so many times. I have never been suicidal but I have also never been this tired. 

This has just really been an excruciatingly painful year to live. There were happy highlights, but they were easily killed off by the mostly mundane. 

I am not sure if this is what depression feels. They say being depressed means feeling trapped, helpless and hopeless, so if I still have this speck of hope, then I should be fine.

But what if I lose it?

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Busy

That’s my current state. Well, the state that I have been in for several weeks. I have been enjoying (sometimes, just trying to enjoy) the season I am in. I have been meeting with my closest friends, going to restaurants, seeing comedy shows, listening to live music… Heck, I even got to watch midget boxing again. 😂 

Work is also a big part of why I am very occupied. Our company will be transferring to the Mall of Asia area soon and much as I hate undergoing another phase of separation anxiety, I would also just want to get it over with. I still haven’t decided if I will apply for another post. Not sure if I would like to get out of my comfort zone, even if the comfort zone sometimes doesn’t feel confortable anymore.

Mama and Daddy are still the best two people in my life. You who are this, I hope that you can say a little prayer for their health, especially Mama’s. Our family has been going through some challenges lately and I can only admire the strength and faith of my parents. I really hope that our family endures and eventually enjoy what life throws our way.

There was a time when I wanted to be busy because I wanted to escape. I did not want to deal with whatever bad thing I was feeling. Being busy used to be a magic state wherein I can forget that life was messed up.

Now I am just grateful for all these things, boring and exciting alike, because while I still do not understand the very purpose of why 2016 has been the most challenging year of my almost 35 years of existence, it has surely showed me parts of who I am that I did not know existed or are able to exist. 

Anyway, more of gratitude next time. That or a post about drinks I recently had that are named after Pinoy mythical creatures or about revisiting Forbestown in BGC. I don’t know. Can’t say I really care what the next post will be. 

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Ate Dona, if you’re reading this, please send me an sms. I lost your number. I love you and I miss you.

A Rant on Dishonesty

They say the only thing worse than a liar is a bad liar. I say he’s particularly worse if he quotes Bible verses to make people believe that he is a sheep to cover the fact that he is a wolf out to get the naïve and the stupid. I’m not saying wolves cannot become sheep when put into a situation that will compel them to transform. Just saying that now, while he acts like a wolf, I want to get a rock and hit his head with it repeatedly.

It’s not really the lie that pisses me off. It’s his utter disregard for my intelligence and (stalking) skills of being able to find out. I say it’s not the lie, because I do not really care what he does with his life. I am his friend, not his partner. Whatever he does with the opposite (or same, hahaha) sex is of no concern to me. And as his friend, he should already know by now that I am not shallow when it comes to anything and everything. So what’s the lie for?

Another friend thinks that he might have lied because he is not yet ready for me to know that side of him because he might want to take what we have a to a different level. And I said, “Level niya mukha niya.” Haha, just a typical Iya-hirit. I’m not violent or hateful, I just like snide comments for show. Truth be told, there’s a tender spot in my heart for this person. I wouldn’t be frustrated like this, if there isn’t any. I just really have a big issue with dishonesty, especially after my last relationship. If you want to be part of my life, please do not start off with a falsehood, because if I ever find it out, I will forgive you but your image will most likely be marred for life and you would have to deal with my distrust.

I’m sorry this post is cryptic. I just really want to rant to an audience. I deactivated my Facebook for now because I don’t want to post there for all of our common friends to see. I believe my blog is read by strangers mostly, so there.

Kenshin Izakaya- San Antonio Village, Makati

I am a huge fan of Samurai X so I just had to try this izakaya, not that it has any relevance to the popular anime apart from the name of our beloved battousai. :p It’s located at the ground floor of Linear Building, the condo near Mayapis (flood central of that side of Makati), so I suggest do not go there when it’s raining hard, because you would near a boat to and fro.

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It’s slightly bigger than the izakayas I saw in Japan. Kenshin has about a dozen tables inside and two outside. You can’t drink any alcoholic beverages outside by the way. So for my fellow drinkers who vape/smoke, this might not be the place for you. Too bad they have an interesting drinklist with items infused with sake or Japanese whisky.

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I got the Mix Tempura Set. It has prawn, fish and veggie tempura, a small vegetable salad, diced fruits in syrup, rice and miso soup. This costs 298php. Nothing stood out in this set, except maybe the salad with a Kewpie-like dressing.

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I did, however, love their Matcha  Motchi Parfait. It’s 158php and has red bean paste, corn flakes, whipped cream, mocha and matcha ice cream. This made up for the disappointment I felt over the tempura set.

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One thing that you might want to try when you visit Kenshin is their make-your-own takoyaki for 288php. It’s good for a small group of diners since the takoyaki tray makes 16 big pieces of takoyaki. Pwede rin ikaw lang kung bet na bet na bet mo talaga ang octopus. Tako means octopus in Nihongo, btw. 🙂

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I’d go back to try their ramen and gyoza. Didn’t notice any sashimi or sushi on the menu though.

Oh well… 5 stars for the battousai, 2.5 for the izakaya.

Kenshin Izakaya
Groud Floor, The Linear Makati, Yakal Corner Mayapis Street,
San Antonio, Makati City
+63 9175514605
+63 9498831200
Sunday- Monday : 11am – 3am

Xocolat – Loyola Heights, Quezon City

I asked my Facebook friends for a place near Ateneo that’s conducive for usapang masinsinan and that has good food especially desserts. Xocolat was the most mentioned choice.

I’m not that much of a chocolate fan, but I do like the saying, “A balanced diet is having chocolate in both hands!”

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I can’t believe I lived in Diliman for 2 years and hung out in this area of QC for a large part of last year but it was only last August 27 that I got to try Xocolat out. I guess there is really an appointed time for everything. 😀

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It was also my first time to see the enthralling-awesome-youthful Fr. Jboy Gonzales! I met him in Twitter around 3 years ago, and I’m thankful that he got to spend some time with me before he went to Davao for his new thrilling and consequential assignment .

We had pasta, cakes and chocolate drinks– stuff that you cannot not have when you are in Xocolat. We had Hot Xocolat, Aztec Xocolat (with chili!), Tablea Xocolat, Pineapple Mango Basil Mansi, Lemon Bangus Pasta, (cannot remember the pasta Fads had, I think it was Hungarian Sausage pasta), carrot cake, lemon cake, and matcha cheesecake! 

Everything was good, but I’d go back for the lemon cake and the hot chocolate made with tablea and with chili!

They do not only use chocolate in their beverages and pastries, but in their mains as well- like the Chicken ala Xocolat which is like chicken a la kiev with white chocolate and the Xocolat Pork Belly which is served with cacao-bagoong sauce.

Xocolat is a great choice for having no nonsense good food in a shabby chic setting. 🙂 I liked it so much that I went back there a couple of times by myself. Planning on bringing my South friends there soon. Well, hopefully I get to go back there to meet Father Jboy again. But who knows, the next time I meet him might already be in Davao. Ah ewan. Basta may pagkain na masarap at may masarap na chikahan! 😀

Xocolat
172 B. Gonzales Street,
Loyola Heights, Quezon City
02 9294186
Sunday-Monday, 7am to 11pm
(They also have branches in Greenhills and in Libis.)

Goto Monster – La Paz, Makati

I only appreciate the rain if I don’t have to leave my beloved bed or if there’s food that can combat the cold. A big bowl of goto from this spot in La Paz, Makati surely satisfies. It’s been our go-to goto place (see what I did there? nyehehe) since 2014, rainy season or not.

I already blogged about GOTO MONSTER 2 years ago and I love their food so much that they deserve to be reblogged. 😀

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Needless to mention, the star of the menu is their goto- with its perfect consistency, superb taste and texture and yummy toppings. They now use turmeric, instead of kasubha, for coloring and flavoring. Just in case you don’t know, turmeric is luyang dilaw in Tagalog… the queen of spices in the spice kingdom… and has the scientific name of curcuma longa. :p It has anti-inflammatory and anti-depressant properties. Taray di’ba?

The other dishes worth having in Goto Monster are their tokwa with shiitake, bagnet or eggplants and their fresh springrolls that come with peanut sauce, chimichurri and chili.

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Their chicken adobo has got to be the best tasting adobo, even better than my Mama’s (and she already makes a mean adobo!) I wonder how they made the chicken that tender. Plus who knew chicken adobo goes well with mustasa salad? Don’t forget to drizzle some bagoong!

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ChickAdoboSilog – 120php

Their sisig is very spicy, so if you have low tolerance for spiciness, huwag niyo akong gayahin na kain lang nang kain, I didn’t realize I got to eat lots of chopped chili until it was too late! Buti na lang I had a refreshing and strong glass of Mojito (made with real lambanog… malakas ito, pwede kang ipaglaban.) to the rescue that time!

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It was my first time to try their ice cream pops some weeks ago. I had ginataang halohalo (check photo above) and leche flan (photo below). Both are so worth it for 50pesos a pop. Ang tindi nung leche flan, Napa-leche ako sa sarap. Kaya ko umubos ng lima sa isang upuan! But of course I won’t kasi I have to make way pa for their waffles!

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Leche Flan Ice Cream Pop

Their Champorado Waffles is a treat for those who like the sweet and salty combo. Champorado waffles (they use rice flour) topped with vanilla icea cream, drizzled with chocolate and sprinkled with pinipig and crispy dilis. Definitely a delightful and delicious take on this popular Pinoy dish. Hindi ko akalain na mapapakain ako ng ice cream na tinaktakan ng dilis!

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Here’s my first love… Hindi si Donnie! ‘Yung Bibingka Waffles! I brought my besty a few days before his birthday to Goto Monster, hence the candle on the (rice)cake. I believe his wish was dalhin ko siya uli siya doon at isali ko siya sa Goto Monster Challenge! Bwahahaha!

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Bibingka Waffles with salted egg, ube ice cream, thick strips of bucayo, and salted caramel sauce – P135

I also brought my balikbayan friends Joel and Charm to Goto Monster because Charm loves goto and Joel wanted bagnet! Here we are with the waffles and some streetkids that the future mister and missus treated with some bagnet and tokwa. 🙂

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For drinks, I suggest you try their Kapeng Barako (served with bucayo na parang butterscotch ang dating… sara!), Iced Salabat and Iced Pineapple Kalamansi + Fresh Herbs. ‘Yung mga bote ng lapad sa table nila, condiments po ‘yon, hindi alak. Si Donnie kasi sabi ko, mag-2 bottles kami (after Goto Mosnter) tapos inabutan ako nung toyo at bagoong. :p

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A big thank you to Goto Monster for giving us monsterrific food! Thanks also to the awesome and artistic owner Jean Hill for putting art in the dishes and in the walls (check out her caricatures of famous Pinoy personalities). Keep ’em coming, Jean! 🙂

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Goto Monster
Primo de Rivera Street Corner Pablo Ocampo Sr. Extension,
La Paz, Makati City
09163002600
Open 24/7

The Study : Idea Space – Loyola Heights, Katipunan

One thing I miss about my life as a student is going to cafes and finishing my assignments. For some reason, I couldn’t do it at home. I had to be in a quiet corner of a coffee shop or a restaurant for my mind to function. I guess that reason is katakawan. Haha. My mother also said it’s kaartehan. (Aray!)

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Well, whatever. :p When I was taking my bachelor’s degree (Psychology- San beda College Alabang, 2003) my favorite tambayan was Café Francais, now Mama Lou’s. And when I was taking my master’s (Educational Psychology – University of the Philippines Diliman, 2007), my hangout of choice was Chocolate Kiss. If I were to study again, it would be in Ateneo and I would love to bring my books and my appetite here in The Study: Idea Space. The Katipunan Kids (peg ko every Saturday, hahaha) seem to love their study cubicles and food, so I tried it as well.

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Dapat kapag nag-aaral, may inspiration. Kung hindi mo kasama boyfriend mo, tingin ka na lang dito.

 

I had the Honey Oyster Chicken Rice Bowl (180php) and Mango Slush (130php) for lunch the first time I went there. The slush was average, but the chicken was sooooo good. It’s flavorful inside-out and very tender. I also loved the rice even if it has kintsay/Chinese parsley (not my favorite herb in the world).

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Hindi halata sa photo pero malaki ang serving nung chicken that’s why when I went to class, I didn’t get the free merienda anymore. (Thanks Victory Katipunan for always getting us yummy donuts!)

Gusto ko pang tumambay after class, so I went back to The Study. I had the Iced Cheesecake Latte (130php) and The Taco Pizza (280php). Good iced latte. Lasang cheesecake talaga. 🙂

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The Taco Pizza was maybe a foot long. It’s delicious, but kinda hard to eat because it’s super loaded with meat sauce and toppings”. I didn’t expect it to be that big. (There goes the “That’s what she said!” comments haha)  Super sulit for 280. I did not get to finish it, but I would have if I weren’t still full from lunch.

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I looked for hot sauce in their condiments/cutlery section and I saw these cool ketchup dispensers. Kahit man lang sa pagkain, matuto akong bumaril.

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I was in Regis center again last Saturday for the repeat of our  Day 1 topic in VCF. I left the house early so I’d have time to have lunch before attending class. That’s how much I liked eating and hanging out here. I had the Toasted Java Mallows Frappuccino (145php) and Black Truffle Pasta (240php). I liked the java part, not the mallows part of the frappe. Ang expectation ko kasi toasted rin ‘yung mallows. Hehehe! The pasta, apart from being delicious was heavy on the tummy.

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And hey! They have Pokemons! There’s Squirtel, Pikachu, orange-brown creature and sleeping blue fatty. Forgot the names! :p Sorry na, I’m not a fan, but they’re cute!

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Saw some lovely little ladies lounging outside. I think they’re talking about the love life of their friend when I snapped this. Gusto ko sana umepal eh and say “Books before boys”, but who am I kidding? That wasn’t what I followed rin naman when I was in college. Well, not until the latter part! 🙂

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Na-achieve ko naman ‘yung peg ko na studious Atenean, di’ba? 😀

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The Study Idea Space
2nd Level, Regis Center
327 Katipunan Ave., Loyola Heights
0917 8222437