Experiencing Puning Hot Springs

I remembered back in college when my Dad asked me to join their company initiated trek at Sitio Target, Sapangbato, Angeles City. I remembered that there were only a few bloggers that time, meaning information was limited about hikeable and trekkable hills (God, I am really old!). Still, with limited information, my dad, his coworkers, and my 18-year-old self continued to explore Sitio Target.

I remembered bringing my blue China-made iPod Shuffle full of Celtic Music, OST of Narnia and Lord of the Rings and loads of Enya and Kitaro. I was hoping for a meditative hike this time, unlike the one I had in Arayat where the trail was steep and slippery. And with Sitio Target’s charm, my goal to have a reflective hike was achieved. Sitio Target is not really a mountain. It is actually the ancestral domain of Aetas in Sapangbato which is also near the Pampanga side of Mount Pinatubo. My favorite thing about this place were the small canyon-like structures where water from the spring flows. Walking inside them felt refreshing maybe because this kind of nature was something new to me, or it felt like I was in a legendary film where elves and fairies exist. Forgive my hyperboles but this was how I remembered it back in 2008 where there were no such things as Facebook status update and HD Cameras are for rich kids. Continue reading “Experiencing Puning Hot Springs”

Mount Tagapo Hike

I love easy and short hikes. I do not like those long tiring climbs. Give me a 1 out of 5 difficulty level and I am in.

I have my reasons. First, I do not like carrying big bags when climbing. I am not like my dad who is a regular hiker who hordes a lot of hiking gears, bags and shoes. I am his opposite when it comes to climbing. One small bag is enough to fit an extra shirt, a liter of water, my asthma inhaler, an energy bar and a small pack of sour gummy worms. Second, I am a lazy hiker. Long hikes bore me. I love summits but sometimes I find the trail very usual. Third, I consider myself a city guy and not a nature guy. Don’t get me wrong. I love nature and I love appreciating every bit of it, but I still prefer the urban jungle. Ironically, I can meditate and reflect in the hustle and bustle of the city and finds it difficult to stay still and quiet in front of a calm river or a mountain. This was the same reason why I loved noise while studying back in college and while getting ready for a good night sleep.

Last week, my friends and I had the opportunity to climb a level 1 mountain in Binangonan, Rizal. The mountain was called Mount Tagapo or commonly known as the “Susong Dalaga” (Maiden’s Breast) because of its shape. Continue reading “Mount Tagapo Hike”

Monday Recommendations – February 27, 2017

Yesterday, I was on my way to church, riding a Jeepney. I had to travel alone because my parents were in Manila to visit my mom’s uncle in the hospital. I sat near the entrance of the jeepney in front of the teenage guy wearing a white shirt and a red cap. Halfway our church, an older guy carrying a bunch of balloons rode the jeepney. He asked the teenage guy to move a bit and sat in front of me. I got pissed because the balloons were all over my face and blocked the entrance of the jeepney. I was actually in a bad mood that morning because my Sunday pants were all in the laundry. I had no choice but to wear the maroon pants which I only used during our office’s 80s themed party. And I had to commute wearing them. My mood changed when I saw the teenage guy looking at the balloons. He was reading what’s written on them and amazed by the red and blue balloons blocking the entrance. He’s fascinated as if it was his first time to see the balloons.

Continue reading “Monday Recommendations – February 27, 2017”

Minimalism and Drama Queens

Minimalism in my own definition is putting stuff away which do not add value to us. I have written a post about it and I have cited examples of what I did with my stuff, my wardrobe, and my digital space. Some were radical. Some were things I did to simplify.

As my journey to minimalism continues, I realized that the minimalist lifestyle is more than giving away stuff, scanning papers to have more space and deleting useless phone applications. Minimalism also includes managing our emotions, thoughts, and energy towards the people around us. Like letting go of useless stuff, minimalism also allows us to let go of relationships which do not add value and quality to our lives. If we need to be intentional with our material consumption and our inner lives, we should all as well be intentional with our relationships. Continue reading “Minimalism and Drama Queens”

Minimalizing. Is that even a word?

“I can’t go out tonight, I am minimalizing”, I said to my officemates when they invited me to go out for a coffee session last Friday night.

“Really, minimalizing? Is that even a word?”, one of them asked.

So after Googling it, there was actually a term but I am not sure how new the word was except that it has been used several times by those simple living blogs, where I also learned about the word. It’s still on red underline as I write this.

To minimalize the term, “minimalizing” means cutting down the excess. I started practicing this concept a couple of years ago but I fall short every once in a while when my auto-pilot consumerist behavior and tempting advertisements overpower this principle.  Some people would also discourage me and would often tell me that I cannot practice minimalism in the Philippines because we do not have enough. I would always think that minimalism is best to practice in a developing country where we need to challenge and question every capitalist-driven advertisements, products, and services. Where large companies where we hoard products are also the same companies which exploit the poor and abuse the resources of the country. Continue reading “Minimalizing. Is that even a word?”