Mabuhay Homeland 2014

July – August 2014
Summer Holiday

Tagaytay; Davao City; Boracay Island, Philippines
Shanghai, China

One of the perks of working as a teacher is the summer vacation we get to have at the end of each school year, which is about two months of uninterrupted laziness, waking-up-late morning days, staying-up-late evenings, traveling, eating, movie marathons and all imaginable things worth doing.

To be honest though, on my fourth no-work-day back in June 2014, my body was already used to being in work mode that I got a bit anxious and bored. I was already itching to get back to work so I can do my normal routine –  but that did not last very long. Who was I kidding?

I wanted to go somewhere close, preferably travel time not to exceed 3-4 hours. I packed my bag and left Shanghai to visit my homeland, the Philippines.

Amazing view from People’s Park in the Sky, Tagaytay
Met up with my classmates (since primary school until high school) 
over coffee and loads of calorie-filled sweets
Shared a seafood fiesta dinner with one of our adorkable former Pisay student 
(dishes currently being prepared when this picture was taken)
Reconnected with former work colleagues
Re-lived childhood memories at the beach


Spent a weekend at the beach with the family
Embraced the cool ocean breeze
Celebrated my 4th year as Shanghai expats over brunch at Azur, Renaissance Hotel with Ronald  
Apparently, I was a diligent writer back in 2011 and as my life got crazier and busier, I wrote less. Well, I will try to write more this time, I think I can still fill 2014 up.

Late Entry: US Summer 2013 NYC

October 6, 2013
National Holiday Week
Shanghai, China

I have been intending to update this blog for the longest time but my procrastinating self always overpowers. It has been a long-standing battle but this is as much as I can do for now. I will try to recall as much memories as I can. 

June 28, 2013

Lower Manhattan, NYC
The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Battery Park; Staten Island

I remember Ronald and I going to Shake Shack near Time Square to get the much-hyped burger before we head off to the museum. There was a long queue that starts off from the outside of the shop. There were only a few tables inside, which were all occupied. We were smart enough to buy what we need in take-away bags. I learned from a TV documentary on NYC that shake shack started off by selling hot dogs and so I got myself a Shack-cago dog and a Shackburger. The hot dog did not leave a lasting impression on me but the Shackburger did. It is definitely a place worth going back to, ignoring the calories that goes everything in their menu.

 The Metropolitan Museum of Art  
Anyone can check the pictures of the exhibit displays at The MET online. However there is an indescribable feeling of being in the zone at the museum and observing the awesomeness of everything around you. I leave you to that experience when you end up at the MET at some point in your life.

We got there probably around 4sh pm. For Fridays of this Summer, after 4pm, I think there was an optional admission fee – in other words, you can actually get in for free. However Ronald opted to pay 20 USD for both of us. I thought it was decent enough, considering we get to have the last set of commemorative lapel pins.

Exhibit room near the main entry hall
Main Lobby

I can tell you though that one day is not enough to observe and absorb each story behind each exhibit display.

Battery Park
The Battery park was under renovation when we went there however we found this bus around the area.

Photographs: Ronald Igar