Things I’m Happy I Tried and Learned Before 30

My previous birthday posts are always in the form of wishlists, things I must absolutely do in this life time, celebrations (mainly food trips haha), and the different lessons life has taught me, with me usually looking back at the challenging parts of my existence. For this year (and since I like making lists so much), I'm going to switch it up a bit and enumerate the moments that I've experienced in my life (good and bad) that I am truly grateful for which helped me grow and be where I am right now.

I survived a break up. Here's the thing why it was a big deal to me: I've only had one relationship and it lasted for 8 years. In all honesty, I thought he was the one. But things took an unexpected turn and we had to let it go. The break up made me realize that I wasn't happy, he wasn't happy, that I needed to work on myself, look at the grand scale of things, and get out of my comfort zone.

I failed... a lot. My family had high expectations of me academe-wise since I've always had good grades as far as I can remember. I was always in the honors list and my parents didn't doubt that I'd still continue that when I went to college. Boy, I was so wrong. College was harder in so many ways I couldn't even imagine. I endured a lot of failures in those 6 years I was in Mapua. Pride kept me going but eventually I fell out of love of Chemical Engineering. I hopped jobs until I landed where I'm working right now. And finally, I am happy.

I had a bad girl phase in college. I'm not really proud of this one and my mom would perhaps kill me if she found out about this. But there was a moment in time when I would skip class, spend afternoons of most days of the week drinking and sleep at different people's friends' houses. I had tons of fun, I'm not gonna lie about that, and I met my college best friends during this phase in my life. I guess it's good that I got that out of my system. Haha.

Loops + Links: Gilmore Girls Edition

Gilmore Girls enamel pin set from here
When I say 'I love Gilmore Girls!' that is absolutely an understatement. I grew up watching during Saturdays (back to back with Will & Grace at Studio 23! Kabarkada mo! :P) the endless mother-daughter witty verbal sparring and fell in love with every quirky character in Stars Hollow. It was an amazing and intelligent show to grow up with when I was just about the same age as Rory. And I identified with Rory: I was one of those book-loving and "Sports? What sports?" private schooled girls of the world. I love how the charming little town of Stars Hollow is, like, hidden from the world and is just a turn of a corner away from being discovered, all the movie and book references, the outrageous amount of junk and Chinese food they consume, the funniest and crankiest character that is Michel, Rory's ambitions, Lane's taste in music, the love triangle, the odd traditions, everything!

I'm writing this because, yes, I've known about the Gilmore Girls revival (which was called Gilmore Girls A Year In The Life) which will be shown at Netflix next month (I swear I cried happy tears when I first learned about this news), and I've been rewatching it for a few days now. Though, okay, I will be absolutely honest here: I've begun to hate Lorelai's character and a bit more things on the show. I have the same feeling as I did when I wrote this after revisiting my favorite film, Reality Bites. I had this light bulb moment: Lorelai is a manic pixie dream girl! (*more exclamation points*) And it dawned me that the worst character on the show is nope, not Emily and Richard, not Jess, not even Taylor, it's Lorelai herself! I hated how even though everyone explicitly tells her Luke always had a thing for her, she dismisses it and toys with him! I guess with age comes wisdom, no? Or maybe I've lived long enough in this world to know that life isn't as peachy as in Stars Hollow or you wouldn't really meet the love of your life by coincidentally having a copy of his favorite book (yes, Team Jess 4EVER!)

Weekend Movies #14

I've forgotten about posting films here (last one was July! wuuut!) because I've been updating more on Facebook. I have this Films 2016 photo album where I put my favorite screen caps of all the ones I was able to watch, with little comments if I had any (so far, I've seen 82 films already haha). Again, I try not to give away too much but still might contain spoilers!

1. Train To Busan. This is everything World War Z should have been and so much more. I had expectations since first seeing the trailer and it didn't disappoint in any way. In fact, Train To Busan even surpassed it. There's no minute wasted, it's a suspense movie through and through! I watched this film with my family at the cinema and I was screaming almost its entirety (and I didn't care one bit because everyone else was too!) No overused crappy CGI, great plot and subplots, the cast was perfect, and with the right amount of drama sucker punched me right to the gut (well, it's a South Korean film, ain't it?) 

2. Your Name (Kimi no Na wa). One thing you could always count on Makoto Shinkai films is the stunning, realistic animation. The animation is art on itself. Tranquility and silence on most part of his films are always evident. Kimi no Na wa certainly ticks all of the box of the usual Shinkai film and it may appear like those typical slice of life animes but I can assure you it is not. It absolutely got me clutching my pearls on most parts, while also never failing to make me laugh and even cry. If you haven't seen any of his works, please do start with this one (just because I think 5 Centimeters Per Second has a slower pace than this, but I still enjoyed it as much)! The film also has an amazing soundtrack!

Zomato #FoodieMeetUp: Single Origin Rockwell

I arrived at Single Origin around 5:00 in the afternoon, surprisingly still made it on time despite the traffic, and was awed by its beautiful interiors instantly. You see, I'm not one to brave the terrible rush hour of Makati, but since this was an invite by Zomato and I was on leave that day, I figured I could spend the afternoon at the Rockwell area because it's been a while since I went to a mall like a normal person. Haha.

There's another branch at BGC which replaced The Cake Club (*sad*) which a lot of people frequent to. But compared to the High Street branch, this is bigger and has a higher ceiling. I love, love how spacious and bright the cafe looks, perfect for hanging out with family and/or friends, or just to chill or get things done on your own! Folks who love the rustic vibe will definitely be smitten with this place as the cafe's theme is a combo of bricks, wood, even glass and injected with industrial elements.

I've read from other blogs how extensive the variety of coffee they offer here, but I'm not going to be talking about that because my knowledge about coffee is so limited, I don't know how to appreciate a good cup if I was given one.

Graffiti Hunt: Art BGC 2016

I have this slight fixation with street art. I don't recall how it started maybe a few years back, but somehow the fascination just continues to grow. I try to photograph as much street art/graffiti as I could when I'm in transit to and from work and whenever I happen to stumble upon one wherever I may be. 

Whenever I'm in Cavite, I usually see murals by BLIC and Lee Salvador, which then in turn led me to know about the existence of Cavity Collective, a group of graffiti artists that originated from Cavite (Cavity is, yes, a word play of the word Cavite). And then there's the Why graffiti all over C5, Pasig and even Makati. Did you know that this Why guy gives away shirts and art pieces for free? He would post a photo on his IG account of the place where he'd leave stuff, whoever gets there first, of course, gets it. Kind of like treasure hunting, which is fun!

So when I learned about Art BGC last year, I did a sort of graffiti hunt so I could photograph all the murals around High Street and I figured why not do it again this year, right?

Coincidentally, it was raining once again when I arrived at BGC. And if there was one thing that this activity further solidified, it was that I am really, unmistakably geographically challenged. Hahaha.

First up are Bunnie Reiss' works. The mural above can be found on the side of the restaurant, Mango Tree, along 7th Avenue. The first two words that came to mind when I saw Reiss' art were magical and cosmic. It's something I would love to have painted on the walls of my future home. Reiss is originally from Europe (Polish and Russian descent), raised in Colorado, and is now Los Angeles based.
Reiss' inspirations range from animals, folk art, and old woodcut illustrations, to magical symbols and the stars. "I want people to feel they have the right to look at beautiful things, to feel good—even for just a quick moment—when walking by one of my murals," she explains. "There’s a kind of freedom one gets from just letting it all go. I believe strongly that what I am doing is part of a larger 'job' and that getting up to create and release every day keeps a small part of this giant universe moving along like an inchworm. I keep things simple, so my work can continue to grow." (x)
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