Small and Intimate

January 22, 2009 at 10:50 PM | Posted in Food and Dining, Lifestyle, Musings | 1 Comment
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I celebrated my birthday yesterday just the way I wanted it — simple and quiet. No big celebrations for me this year. I think when you reach a certain age and your level of maturity grows, you want less and less of the partying and extravagance. Actually I don’t hold big celebrations when it’s my birthday. I usually treat it as any other ordinary day, highlighted only with a small gathering of friends (or colleagues if the situation calls for it).

inside Cafe Bola

inside Cafe Bola

So yesterday I just took two of my friends to lunch at Cafe Bola in Greenbelt 3 and chatted over a delicious meal. Speaking of which, the food at Cafe Bola was good but they had terrible service. One of the staff there forgot to serve our ordered dessert and the service was slow. The staff weren’t that attentive to the customers even though the place was half empty at lunchtime.

inside Amici

inside Amici

Anyway, the lunch treat was followed by a quiet dinner with my close friend, Ghe later that day. We dropped by at the salon before dinner and had pedicures and foot spa. Then we headed for Amici in Makati for dinner. It’s been a long time since Ghe and I got together so our conversation was focused on updating each other with what’s going on in our personal lives. It’s times like these that I really relish spending time with my close friends. Good company, substantial conversation, and good food made my birthday meaningful.

So True

January 21, 2009 at 3:25 PM | Posted in Musings | 2 Comments
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I got this from MSN Astrology. I’m an Aquarian and this article speaks a lot about my personality. Practically all (OK, maybe not everything, haha!) the things mentioned in this article are applicable to me. (Underlined portions are mine.)

Fun Facts: Aquarius

Aquarians present themselves in one of two ways. One on hand, you’ll see someone who is shy and quiet. On the other, an Aquarius can be boisterous, eccentric, and energetic. Both are deep thinkers with a love of helping others. Highly intellectual, this is a fiercely independent sign that prizes intuition tempered with logic. Both personality types have an uncanny ability to see both sides of an argument without prejudice, making them excellent problem solvers. While very much attuned to the energies around them, Aquarians have a deep need to take time out alone and away to rejuvenate themselves. The keyword for this sign is imagination. The Aquarian can see a world of possibilities even when there appears to be none.

Friends and Family

Even though Aquarians are great with groups of people, it takes a bit when it comes to making close friends. Deeply sensitive and cautious, closeness means vulnerability to an Aquarius, and this is not something to be taken lightly. Aquarians’ direct, no-nonsense approach in combination with their strong values can make it challenging to get to know the inner person. Yet those who are able to do so will discover a friendship that lasts through the years. An Aquarius will go the distance for a loved one to the point of self-sacrifice if necessary. They look for creativity, intellect, and honesty in their friends. When it comes to family, the expectations are no less. Although dedicated to a sense of duty to relatives, the Aquarius isn’t one for developing close bonds unless the same qualities they expect in their friendships are there.

Career and Money

Aquarians bring enthusiasm to the work they do, especially when it involves expression. They have an exceptionally high ability to put their imaginative qualities to the task and to think outside the box. Careers that allow for concept development or demonstration can suit this sign well. I know is the key phrase for the Aquarius. High intellect combined with an Aquarius’ willingness to share their talents inspires many who work in the same environment. Being visionary types, Aquarians love to engage in careers that aim to benefit humankind in the long-run.

When it comes to money, this sign really has a knack for keeping a healthy balance between having the things that they need and putting money away. When they are out shopping, the shiny, glittery, and extravagant will catch their attention even though their homes are generally decorated with great taste. It’s not uncommon to find the Aquarius turning heads dressed in daring, brightly colored outfits. Most are well-attuned to their individual sense of style and aren’t afraid to show it.

Careers that suit the Aquarius are acting, writing, teaching, photography, or piloting. The best environment is one that gives the freedom to tackle the task without a lot of strict guidelines. The Aquarius is unconventional, and given the opportunity to show their true talents, they can perform amazing feats.

Love and Sex

Intellectual stimulation is by far the greatest aphrodisiac for the Aquarian. There’s nothing like a lively chat rich in culture and future possibilities to get this sign going. When it comes to love, people best suited are those that are not thrown off by Aquarian frankness. Open, communicative, imaginative, and willing to risk are all qualities that blend well with this sign’s perspective on life. Honesty and sincerity are essential for anyone seeking a long-term connection to this dynamic personality.

Likes
A good cause, being part of a club, scientific ideas, fun with friends, a good listener

Dislikes
Dull or boring situations, people who disagree with them

Strengths
Progressive, original, humanitarian, independent

Weaknesses
Runs from emotional expression, uncompromising, temperamental, aloof

Best Environment
Any gathering of people to exchange ideas

Hot or Cold?

January 16, 2009 at 5:13 PM | Posted in Musings | Leave a comment
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Those who don’t know me really well might automatically assume that I’m a cold, unfeeling person once they meet me. Some might have regarded me as aloof and unapproachable. I know for a fact that my tendency to keep quiet most of the time has thrown off some people. And though I don’t necessarily put myself out there, it doesn’t mean that I’m cold-hearted. I’ve always been the shy type and I’m not a bubbly, chatty person. I can be moody sometimes, brooding even. But once you get me to talk on topics I like, I can be very animated. I don’t show my emotions most of the time but that doesn’t mean I don’t care. I do care about the things that matter to me. In fact, I can be very passionate about the things I believe in. I’m just not that showy or verbal about my feelings. Perhaps that is why I became a writer. Sometimes it’s just better for me to put it in writing than actually say it. That’s me.

The Bridget Jones Connection

January 15, 2009 at 3:07 PM | Posted in Musings | Leave a comment

Here in the Philippines, January is the month of weddings. Many couples get married during this time. In fact, a friend of mine is getting married this weekend. And though I’m truly happy for her, I can’t help but have this Bridget Jones moment again. News of friends and acquaintances tying the knot this month makes me all the more acutely aware of the pressure to settle down and get married. I’m never that woman who feels incomplete without a husband or a baby. In fact I’m a fiercely independent woman who doesn’t think about marriage that much.

But when I hit the age of late twenties, family and friends began asking me when I would get a husband (gosh, that is so 1800’s!) and finally settle down. The question didn’t bother me at first since I was more concerned with building up my career that time. But these past couple of years, I get annoyed when friends and family pester me with that question. Just last month, I sent a text message to my college buddy wishing her a happy Christmas. I got a reply from her with a quip, “How are you? Single ka pa rin?”, as if being single is some sort of crime. She is married for about a few years now and has a baby. Ugh! Smug marrieds (as well as emotional f*ckwits) can be so irritating!

I was really irked by that comment. Why do most Filipino women still have this traditional view on women? In this modern times, you would think that society is already through with this old-fashioned and sexist view. But apparently, not in this country. Most of the women I know still believe that a woman has to get married before or when she reaches 30. How sexist and ageist is that.

Going Smart

January 7, 2009 at 5:23 PM | Posted in Technology | 2 Comments
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I just read a bad review of the Smart Broadband Prepaid services on Multiply and though I sympathize with the disgruntled user, I can’t resist making a comment about it. I’m a recent user of Smart Broadband Prepaid and to be fair, I find their services quite good. The Internet connection is fast and so far, I haven’t encountered any problems at all. I was also able to register my service number quickly and view my prepaid load balance. I reside in Makati so I guess that makes a difference compared to other users living outside Makati who encounter frequent connection problems (I’ve read and heard from other users that location actually counts when it comes to connecting to the Internet). I also use it at different times of the day so time is not an issue.

I do not work for Smart at all. In fact, I have a SIM-locked Globe handyphone. I just decided to avail of the Smart Bro prepaid services instead of the Globe Broadband because I heard that Globe Broadband’s services really suck. Not once I have read or heard a good review of Globe Broadband. Whereas I’ve gotten mixed reviews about Smart Bro from friends and colleagues — some good, some bad. So in the end I settled for Smart Bro, thus choosing the
lesser “evil”. I bought the prepaid kit from Smart’s Wireless Center in Powerplant Mall. The service at the Center was quite fast; I stayed only for about 15 minutes or less (there was only a short line). The staff were pleasant enough too.

Maybe that disgruntled user was just unlucky when she bought her prepaid kit. She probably went to a Smart branch with poor service. And maybe her location wasn’t good. I don’t know. Maybe it differs in a case-to-case basis. The only inconvenience I encounter about Smart Bro is that I have to use a Smart phone when loading. Other than that, I’m pretty satisfied with Smart Bro.

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