Travel Tales: Hong Kong 2014, Day 4

Travel Tales (3)

For day 4, aka my birthday, we went to Ocean Park! Hehehe. We have been to Disneyland in 2012 (on my birthday too) but this was going to be my first time to Ocean Park, hehehe. I told my friends that it was non-negotiable: my birthday will be spent at a theme park, hahaha.

img_0896
breakfast
img_0898
so happy!

It was a weekday so there weren’t a lot of people so yey! No lines!

img_0903img_0907img_0908

The scariest part for us was not the rides, well, that was scary, a bit. But taking the cable car was the worst!!! Maybe because it was smaller than the ones in Ngong Ping, but also, it was open, and it like literally stopped in the middle of the mountain a loooot of times. Fun experience though, lol!

img_0934

Food is a bit expensive inside (like all theme parks I guess), so we opted for the food stalls instead of the restos inside the park. Although, from what I know, there is now a McD’s since last year.

img_0974

Christmas season means Doraemon in Santa costume!

img_0982

img_1001

After a few more rides, we decided to go home. We didn’t want to join the crowd once the park closes. And to cap off my birthday, we had dinner at Tim Ho Wan! Uber legit since we had it at HK!

img_1046

Clean Those Shoes

So, we all have those shoes that we can’t stop wearing until the time we get a replacement or until we forget about them. I have a lot. Like, I just remember about it once I do a general cleaning or once I see my sister or my mother wearing it, hahaha. I have an upcoming trip this October and there will be a looooot of walking. I don’t want to wear open-toe sandals because to be honest, it’s not the most comfy. And so, all of sudden I saw myself looking for my old shoes. Old, usable, a little dirty but definitely comfy for an entire day of walking.

I have these red and white Adidas since 2003. They are definitely making a comeback today but I don’t really want to buy new shoes just because I’m going on a trip. My problem is, the soles are all yellow because of the many years of use and being trapped inside a closet. These are really comfy and I want to bring this on my trip.

img_9209

Another thing I suddenly remember having are my pair of Toms. I’ve had it since 2011? My mom has been using them for the last few months, until yesterday when I saw it again. They are also really comfy and a lot of travelers have this because it’s also lightweight. The only issue here is that it’s too dirty, hehehe.

img_9208

First one, the Toms. Really easy to clean. I used water, liquid detergent, an old toothbrush, and viola! Doesn’t look brand new but definitely looks clean and very much usable.

img_9214

The white Adidas is another story. According to the many suggestions over the internet, the most common and effective would be water, baking soda, detergent, and some hydrogen peroxide. I guess my problem is, the soles are giving an extremely ugly yellow vibe, haha. The internet concoction worked a little. I got tired after brushing the soles for about 30 minutes. I gave up already actually. Until I decided to why not just literally use bleach and see if it works. If it doesn’t, then I’m not bringing it. If it works, good job to me! Hahaha. And guess what happened next????

img_9212

It actually worked!!! It took me almost an hour brushing the soles and praying to the shoe gods to remove those ugly stains and the answer was simply bleach!!!

img_9213

Before and after comparison:

Moral of the story: if all else fails, try bleach. Just make sure you’re using it for white shoes okay, hahaha.

Travel Tales: Hong Kong 2014, Day 2

Travel Tales (3)

The agenda for our second day was visit the Ngong Ping and Tai-O Village in Lantau Island. It doesn’t make sense to wake up really early in the morning because aside from the cold weather, most establishments open between 9-10 AM.

We didn’t want to have breakfast at McDonald’s so we looked for a local fast food chain, and this is what I had:

img_0493

That’s egg, and chicken. And it wasn’t bad.

After our train ride and a few walks, we finally reached the station for our cable car ride on our way to the village. The ride, I have to say, is an experience on its own. It is a little scary, and during the entire ride to the island, my friends and I would joke about what would happen in case there was an accident, like our cabin falling off, hahaha. That’s why I don’t understand why some will even want to get crystal cabins – those with clear bottoms where you can literally feel like you’re falling? Hahaha.

img_0516
start of the ride = no scary feelings yet
img_0526
not knowing how to feel
img_0530
start to imagine crazy things
img_0576
on our way to the top

img_0539

There are stalls for food around the area in case you get hungry. In our case, we were not hungry. We just wanted to try them out. 😀

img_0584img_0589

Aside from the Big Buddha, there’s also the Po Lin Monastery just a few blocks away.

img_0611img_0616img_0615img_0612

img_0643

After a hundred photos, we decided to go to the nearby Tai-O Village. It’s a tiny fishing village about 20 minutes away from Ngong Ping. All you have to do is take one of the buses from Ngong Ping going to Tai-O. I guess you just have to make sure that you have enough time to go around the village and head back to Ngong Ping since the last call for the cable cars back to the city is around 6pm.

Tai-O Village for me is a very beautiful place. It’s an old place run by a lot of old people. But I guess that’s why it’s sooo charming.

img_0667img_0669

It feels like being transported back to the time when there were no cellphones, no internet, and people only have to worry about much simpler things.

There are also a lot of stalls around the area where you can buy snacks, or even buy sun-dried stuff.. like so.

img_0657img_0679

And when I say sun-dried, they literally dry it using the sun!! Laveet!

img_0673

img_0682

These are their houses. Almost all of the houses in the village look like these. It’s like walking in an amusement park with made up doll houses, amazing!! Hahaha. Aliw na aliw talaga ako!

img_0704
taking a break

img_0738

img_0740

After a couple of amazing hours in Tai-O and about a hundred more photos later, we then went back to Ngong Ping Village to take the cable car back to the city. My favorite part is obviously the fishing village. I love everything about it!!! I would go back to HK just to see Tai-O again!

For dinner, we headed over to one of HK’s night market – not to buy pasalubong or anything. Just to look for place to eat ;D

And food we found!

img_0763img_0758img_0752img_0753

Music Mondays

MusicMondays

Our internet has been conking in and out due to the bad weather – it’s been one week of nonstop rains and one week na din of no internet (Hello, PLDT?). So, today, when I woke up, I was wanting to complete my post about my HK trip last 2014, but again, due to internet challenges, I was thinking of just sleeping it out today (it’s the perfect weather to do nothing). While checking my emails, I received a notification from soundcloud about a song uploaded by my brother’s friend. So, I know that I have a soundcloud account, but I don’t remember the last time I have opened it, more so remember the people I follow. But, the email said that Rizza has uploaded a new song so I listened to it. And, because it’s such a gloomy and boring Monday, I am going to share it to all of you, because it’s really good (just like her other covers)!

Listen and make your Monday a little less gloomy. ;D

Travel Tales: Calaguas

In 2013, Calaguas was the first place I went to after nursing a broken heart (wehehe). I guess it was purely fate(naks!) that my college friends were going on this trip and they decided that it would be best that I tag along with them, together with people Idon’t really know as a way to start over (ang drama ko haha). We called this trip 6 Degrees of Separation in Calaguas, because there were about 15 (or 18, 20?) of us who went on this trip and there was only 1 guy who was a common friend of everyone in the group. Coolness! Haha.

We were on a 20-seater van that left Makati at around 1am on a Saturday morning. We arrived the port going to Calaguas around 10-isg (I think?) and arrived the island a little past lunchtime.

IMG_5154
View from the boat going to the island

Yes. The travel time is a killer. So be ready to sleep, get bored, eat junk food, and sleep some more. Like so:

IMG_5155

So just be thankful that you have the view to enjoy while trying your best to not tear your eyes out of boredom.

That is the super-duper skinny and unhealthy looking me. Like what I said, I just had my heart broken during that time okeeey. Lol.

The good thing about the tour group that we booked was that they take care of the food for you – lunch, dinner and breakfast the next day.

IMG_5198

They will also take care of building the tent for you so all you have to worry about is sleeping inside a tent especially if it’s your first time (like me!).

From here on I will just flood this post with photos from this trip!

IMG_5160

IMG_5161

IMG_5167

IMG_5185

I don’t know why but we didn’t really explore the entire island, or the cove at least. But we did get to watch the sunset.

IMG_5209

There is a small hiking trail near us so we went there the next morning to look at the island and watch the sun (from sunset to sunrise diba).

IMG_5217IMG_5208

After trekking was breakfast. Then we all had to pack up and prepare for another looooong boat and van ride home.

IMG_5172

In the end, it was all worth it. 😉

New Year and Resolutions

New Year is always the perfect time to reflect on plans and dreams and goals. And just like a lot of people, I always have my list as well. They say that writing it down and visualizing it makes it easier in terms of doing it and making it happen.

This year, here are the things I hope to consistently do:

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

  • Exercise. The problem with me is that I can never remain consistent with this. There would be moments when I would run at least twice a week, or go to the gym almost everyday, but when I stop, you won’t even see my shadow near the gym for a good two or three months. That’s how crazy my routine is. This year, I hope to really be more consistent in not just exercising but in actually being more healthy. I know for a fact that I have already established good sleeping habits (I am asleep at 10 in the evening) but that shouldn’t be the end all of ‘how to be healthy’. I’m pretty sure I need to slow down on sweets and actually be more picky with the type of food I eat. Also, I have blood clot on my brain and I don’t want to die early!

IMG_2931

  • Go to church. My place is just 1 ride away from he nearest church and I want to start going more. Going weekly is surely great. Don’t get me wrong, I pray to God as much as I can but I also know that going to church won’t hurt. I mean, Don Bosco Church is my favorite since I have always gone there during my saddest and happiest moments. And I want to start coming to church more without any reason aside from because I want to, not because I need something answered.
  • Blog more. My goal is to at least post something on a weekly basis. We all have a lot of stories to tell, but I really hope that this year is the year that I will finally be able to share my stories starting 2013 (because there are a loooot).
  • Read more. Every year, I always put this in my list. To read at least 1 book per week, or month I guess, haha. My problem is: Me. There’s social media, there’s Netflix, there’s forgetting everything and just sleep. There’s just so many useless stuff to read and watch in the wonderful world wide web that eats up a lot of my time! See, entirely my fault, haha.

1403188149083

  • Save more, travel more. I guess this is pretty self-explanatory. I mean I have a separate savings account (which I call my travel fund) from where I get money for all my travel needs. Because why the hell would you not have one, jk.

On another note, if there’s one thing that I hope to happen this year, I hope I get to find that one person I would travel the whole wide world with. Because, who wouldn’t want that? ❤

Travel Tales: Shilin Night Market

After resting for an hour at our hotel, we headed for the train station that will get us to Shilin. Like what I said earlier, it’s extremely easy to go around the city since all of the major tourist spots has their own station. On our first night, we went to Shilin Night Market which is one of Taipei’s most famous. I don’t know how packed it can get but there were lines almost on each stall maybe because it was a Saturday night.

Fresh fruits are always enticing so when my parents saw this stall, our first sampling was of fruits, haha.

Here are some more of the stalls that we saw while looking for food to try and eat.

Not sure what this is but who cares. Hahaha.

This you can say is one of my favorites for the entire trip. This is fried milk. Yes. Fried. Milk. So it’s square-shaped in a barbecue stick, then it gets dipped in some kind of batter before being fried.

I don’t know how to describe it except that it’s crunchy on the outside and gooey inside and it really tastes like milk. Fried. Make sure to try this out okay!

After the fried milk we saw this corndog stall so of course we tried it. Hehe.

It was hot and it was good.

We saw a line at this stall of a guy selling fried cuttlefish so of course, if people are lining up then that means it’s good. Don’t worry too much about the the cost because everything in the market is affordable. Nothing will go above TWD100, but of course depending on how many you plan on buying. In our case, we want to sample a lot of the food so we just had 1 order for each stall that we like.

This is just a regular fruit juice stand but the sign says frog eggs, not sure why but if it adds to the wow factor then I guess go for it? Haha.

So much food, so little time.

We did not try this but I guess we should have. This is candied fruits. The strawberries are put in a barbecue stick then dipped in candy syrup that hardens and I took a picture because the display looks cute and it is a nice concept, right?

These are legit oven-toasted pork buns. The stall we saw was just starting their first batch of pork buns and we were lucky enough to be the third in line, because the line grew pretty quick. It took about 10 more minutes before the first batch were taken out of the oven so it was really freshly-made when we had ours. While waiting, there were two people in front of the stall making more pork buns so you will have an idea how it’s made. The dough is cut into portions then the pork filling is added together with chives. The bun is closed and gets dipped into sesame. I am no chef or foodie but it tastes really good. So please find time to look for this stall and buy some pork buns, no regrets I promise.

Don’t quote me on this but I believe milk tea started here in Taiwan, and you will see milk tea shops everywhere, right beside each other. Very cheap too compared to the ones we have here. There’s so much milk tea shops and stalls that it will be a crime to not try one out while in Taipei.

So this ends my first day in Taipei, going around the city and extremely enjoying all of their food. Good job Taipei! ❤