Sunday, October 28, 2018


I learned how to swim when I was a little girl with my sister Helen at the Rio Grande River (Mindanao) near Villaeron and corner Bonifacio Streets. At that time, there was a newly made makeshift laundry area at the river site with a roof structure and galvanized mesh underneath to protect the clothes from washing away. Few children, my sister and I included used the facility, like a swimming pool to learn how to swim. At first, my mother had a maid followed us to the river to watch over our safety. But seeing that it was pretty safe, we were soon left along to enjoy ourselves. The laundry structure I think was own by some Chinese guy. It was sturdy and quite safe. Being the younger sister, I pretty soon, began to catch up with Helen in swimming. She was bolder and always trying to prove better. I simply tagged along her daring initiatives. Not for long, from the laundry area, we crossed over to the river bank where the banca and motorboats were docked. There were many other Muslim kids swimming around. We tried to follow their maneuvers. The river had strong current but I would hold on to the boats' balancing poles (katig) or sides and traversed from one boat to another. It was challenging and very fun. I specially love the high tide where the river was always nicer, deeper, greener and cleaner. And thus how I learned to swim, not from the university swimming classes that taught the scientific method and/or free style swimming, but rather from the river with the Muslim kids doing the dog paddle, treading and staying afloat all the way. Until now, I can manage to stay afloat on the water for hours, not because I am a good swimmer but because of the buoyancy I guess. Hahaha. My son Roy once told me, that we were inherently natural floaters. I guess he was right. Hahaha.

Anyway, my sister Helen and I stopped swimming on the river when we became teens. My uncle Fernando came home from Manila one day and saw us swimming with other Muslim kids. He scolded my mother about us girls growing up. And hence, thus this ended our river frolicking era as kids. My uncle was right though. Thank you for your concern, Uncle Fernando.

Still, on becoming a youngster and even as an adult, I continued to enjoy the waters by going to Linik or Kusiong beach on special occasions with family, classmates and friends. When my kids were growing up, my husband and I brought them to the beach here in Cotabato during Sundays. My son Roy was asthmatic so if I could, I would bring them to the beach weekly. During summer, our vacation destinations would be to the different beaches here in the Philippines. My children just liked us had no proper swimming lessons. They also learned how to stay afloat on the blue waters of the beaches and resort pools with their siblings. Many kids now a days learned proper swimming from taking lessons on the pool. I guess that is the right way of learning how to swim though. Yet, for me, nothing really beats having so much fun, learning how to swim with your own family and friends.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Few Dancing Pictures....

Spot the young and the old me....Hahaha!

Dance recital with Mrs. Carmen Hoffer (center)

 Hawaiian Dance number


Filipiniana dance - representing Cotabato MMLC Delegation in Dumaguete.

 Dancing with my husband in USA during Halloween Hahaha!.

 Lets get physical - pool dancing. I was out of the pool though. Haha.

Most recent activity - line dance with the MMLC ladies.

Thursday, October 18, 2018


I love dancing. I am not the best dancer but I manage my steps well. I can follow beats and I have rhythm.
When I was young, I saw my sisters Imelda and Jeannette dancing the boogie and the chacha at home. I loved seeing them danced and swayed with the music. There was a six to seven year age gap between us. And even though nobody really taught me how, yet by just looking at them performed and practiced at home, I was able to distinguished between the two different feet movements of the dances and learned their basic steps not for long. When I reached teenage, the Latin dances became obsolete. The popular ones at parties during my high school days were the twist, jerks, boogaloo etc. No holding of hands. Haha. And although my strict father forbade me and my sister Helen to go to dance parties because he thought it was some kind of a decadent influence, yet we secretly danced our nights away. Infact when were studying at college in Manila, each time we came home for Christmas and/or summer vacations, we were popular invitees for parties. Our contemporaries in Cotabato City were eager to look at our latest fashions and dance steps. When it comes to dancing, I was most eager to oblige. Hahaha.
When my mother died in 1971, I came home to Cotabato to finish my college education. For want
of something to do, I enrolled and took Hawaiian and Tahitian dancing lessons under Mrs. Carmen Hoffer. Carmen Hoffer was a good teacher. Thanks to her, to this day I can still do a graceful Hawaiian or a mean Tahitian dance number. Then I got married at the age of 22 and folded up up my grass shirt and became domesticated. During the 70s disco era, I missed dancing so much. My husband Lucas wasn’t into it but sometimes together with him, upon invitation of my sister Jeannette, we would tow with my brothers Wilson and Willie to Disco 201 at Imperial Hotel, owned and operated by the Yu Family (in-laws of my sister Jeannette), free of charge with special reserved seats and treatment yet. My husband was game. He would freely danced with me on the crowded dance floor under the rotating disco ball with the blinking psychedelic lights, and the blaring sound  surround music that could shatter anybody’s eardrums. But it was fun.
One Masonic event, during the founding anniversary of the lodge, Brother Eduardo Rabago and some old timers began dancing the cha cha and the boogie. because I was so intrigued, my husband brought me to Ed Rabago and told him to dance with me. This was my first time to dance with a partner and I told him that I hadn’t really danced the boogie yet. His advised was for me to just hold on to his right hand and follow his guide. This I did so, and wallah, did I dance well? It was so much fun! From then on, I began to prefer Latin and/or ballroom dancing because of their graceful coordinationing movements.
My husband knowing well that I loved to dance, took free cha cha dance lessons every Saturday night at home with Mr. Pete Capocao, a friend (God rest his soul). It took my husband a year just to learn how to move forward and backward and another year to be able to turn around. Hahaha. But now, hurrah! Even though my husband Lucas is not a sauve dancer; still we manage to enjoy together as a couple on any dance floor and yes, we continue to do so to this day. Hehehe.

Growing Old......

Growing old is such a scourge. I will be 67 years old next month and I am feeling lousy. I have dry eyes and cataracts, dry and sagging skin, ear aches, tooth aches. I have pain on my left shoulder and muscle pain on my left leg. My head is throbbing. I have headaches lately. All these aches and pains are located on the left side of my body. Two weeks ago,  I was scared lest I have some kind of a mild stroke. Since last week, I increased the dosage of my hypertensive medicine. Instead of taking 5mg in the morning, I added another 5 mg after supper. This increase of medication I got from my old internist long ago. But still I need to consult my new doctor in Manila and I plan to go to Manila soon for a check up.

Anyway, for my self preservation and survival, I do shoulder and leg stretching exercises to loosen the tightness of my muscles. To sweat it out, I do simple dance routine and encourage my husband and a few friends to join me at home every Saturday. My husband and I also do two rounds of taichi every Sunday. Despite all these, I still feel the soreness in my left body. What worries me most is my headache. I am scared. O God please spare me from any major illness. “Heal me O Lord and I will be whole. Save me Lord, and I will be safe. In you I hope.”

Growing old is such a scourge. The white hair, the thinning of the tresses, the wrinkles and all. I wasn’t even pretty when I was young. Yet I really don’t mind getting old in the manner of our physical appearances as much, as long as I am healthy and fit. O Lord please sustain me.

My husband is 78 years old. He is also trying to keep healthy. He walks a bit slow. I try to improve his gait, by nagging him about his posture and teaching him to dance. My in-laws here in Cotabato are all in their 70s and 80s too. They each have their own physical weaknesses. We are all trying to beat old age, like some maybe taking super expensive stem cell pills, etc. But in reality our only hope is for the Lord to have mercy on us. 

O Lord, do keep me and my husband strong and healthy always. I love you my God.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Shoppers and Accidental Foodies in USA

Shopping and eating.......
 At the Apple Store - trying out the ipad.
 At Paradise visitor center looking for souvenirs.
 Bellevue Mall
 Lunch at Facebook
 Desserts - my favorite frozen yogurt.
 Clam chowder
 Raspberry bread and coffee
 Egg Benedict
Big waffle, sausages, scrambled egg breakfast!
Among many others..........

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Shoppers and Accidental Foodies in Korea

Tourists, Shoppers and Accidental Foodies in Korea....
Shopping at Dongdaemon.

           At the De-Militarized Zone souvenir store

Mackerel and bibimbap and side dishes


Ice cream. Hahaha

                      Ginseng chicken dish
Street food            
                                                                                               Egg tarts        

Tofu soup

                                                                                                            Happy Eating!!!

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Vacation - USA Pictures

          Mount Rainier, Washington                      Hiking at Mount Rainier. Hehehe.
     Crystal Mountain Ski Resort.                          Martha at Reflection Lake  

                      Sunrise Hill                               On the road going to and around Mt. Rainier
                          White River
On the way to the south peninsula - Nisqually Wetland
            Long Beach, Washington           
At Adrift Hotel, Long Beach
North Head Lighthouse
Disappointment Lighthouse, Cape Disappointment
Waikiki Beach, Cape Disappointment 
Playful at Waikiki Beach...
And ....I have many many more pictures but which I can not put them all in this blog because it might just be too much and overwhelming. hahaha! I am just posting few photos to show you how much my family and I did enjoyed our trip to Washington. Pacific North West is truly lovely, scenic and beautiful! Ciao!

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Vacation - USA

After our 6 day vacation in Korea, Lucas, Martha and I enplaned from Seoul to destination Seatac, Wshington, USA. My son Roy took a negative 10 days leave from work. He drove us around. We went to Seattle, to Snoqualmie Falls. to Mount Rainier, to Nisqually Wetland, to Long Beach, Cape Disappointment, Waikiki Beach, to the other side of the peninsula, etc. We love the beautiful outdoors. Pacific North West was truly scenic and beautiful. We enjoyed walking and trekking all the areas we visited. We walked a lot, ate vigorously and enjoyed catching up with each other's lives and stories. We shopped a little too, hahaha. We went to Bellevue, Ikea, Northstorm, Tillimok Seafood Market, outlet mall, Target, Traders Joe, QFC and other grocery stores. I loved eating cherries which was a plenty in season during summer. I liked the warm summer weather yet enjoyed unbashfully the cold climate on Mount Rainier and the cold windy Pacific ocean shores of Washington. I think Washington is one of the most beautiful states in United States. After two weeks thought, we had to get back home. We only planned and scheduled our vacation for such duration. Roy and Martha had to work. I hope and pray that we could come back to visit again in two years time, all in good health and good form. Thank you God for giving us this opportunity to tour South Korea and Washington. I pray that we will continue to be healthy and fit for many other vacations to come. Continue to bless us, O God. Thank you my Lord.

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Vacation - Myongdong Pictures

In Myongdong

 A tourist district
 Lunch at a popular dumpling and noodle restaurant.
 Really yummy! The restaurant was fully packed..
The Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Myngdong.
 Inside the Cathedral.
 Walking the district during maybe the hottest day of the year.
 All drenched in sweat. Hahaha!
Myongdong street food after five.
Transformed into a street food market.
Look at them food! They were all over!