Red-Faced by the Thomas Jefferson Building

Upon my arrival in Washington D.C. I was super glad to find out that my Bed & Breakfast accommodation is just near the U.S. Capitol Building.  It was only a five minute walk.  That is why after checking-in, dropping my luggage and having no time to waste, I immediately headed to this imposing building.

It was barely 30 minutes before the U.S Capitol visitor center closes that is why I opted not to enter and instead roam the grounds and marvel myself from the beauty and grandeur of the said building.

My carnal body and itchy feet however led me to a gorgeous building just across the U.S. Capitol.  It was too beautiful that I totally forgot how excited I was on seeing and taking shots of the U.S. Capitol.  The fine-looking building I am talking about is the Thomas Jefferson Building formerly known as the Library of Congress Building.

Accepting visitors too for this building was about cease for the day but I opted to enter thinking that I’d rather spend my afternoon’s remaining time inside this less-known building instead of my much preferred U.S. Capitol.  

  The stupidity in me was so high that afternoon that I was actually clueless and was not expecting anything to marvel about inside this building.  But upon entry my jaw simply dropped!  I never imagined that this building’s interior would elaborately be so decorated.  I was astonished to see each of the sections of the building which of course exhibits the richness of the American history and culture.

I thought that the highlight of all highlights was the splendor, opulence and grandness of the main hall.  But when my curiosity attacked, I led myself to a small stairs which looks like it accommodates long queues of people on ordinary days because of the signs posted (but none that afternoon was around since the building was already closing). I discovered an even grander magnificence of this extra-ordinarily beautiful building.  The unimposing stairs led me to the Main Reading Room of the building! And if dropped jaws can further plunge, I guess that was what pretty happened to me during that time!

And when I was done doing the tour of the building, I felt “pahiya” (guilty and embarrassed) because I underestimated the beauty and grandness of the Thomas Jefferson Building which I later found out to be one of the most beautiful buildings in the United States. 

I was at a wow stated when I left Thomas Jefferson Building.  It then dawned in me that my Washington D.C. adventure would be something colorful and spectacular!

clueless

Wow! Hindi ko akalain, gradioso pala sa loob!

An NYC Revisit

I don’t know, but having to travel out of my country makes me feel like I won a prize.  Do you? And one of the best prizes a traveler could get is a trip to vibrant New York.  This is my second time in this city.  Yet, the feeling of exuberance, enthusiasm and delight is so the same.

And though I have been to numerous spots of NYC during my first stay, I again revisited these hip and beautiful sites!  I return because it would feel like you would not completely gone to NY without revisiting these spots again. 

And from my not-so-humble assessment, these sites remained to absolutely be so fascinating.  The thing I felt when I returned did not changed when I compare it during the first time I visited.  It is still absorbing, enthralling and appealing.  My return reaffirmed and reinforced the feeling I had during the first time I visited.  Thus, those feelings were never a fluke and were simply validated. 

Now I wonder how New Yorkers feel when they go out of their city and visit a different spot on the planet.  New York is so vibrant and beautiful, it raises a question in me if they can feel the same way I am feeling when they go out of their city?

Are they already so hard to please? Or since the threshold of their feelings of awesomeness is already so high, do they always feel bland, shortchanged and blunt about the boredom they bear towards a different place they visit?  Or do they have to go out of Earth and visit a different planet for them to feel what I am feeling?

While contemplating on these puzzling questions, here are a couple of photos I took during my revisit to these amazing NY spots…

inside the federal hall
rockefeller center
ny stock exchange
charging bull
central park…
the grand… grand central
me and the flatiron

Ang pagbabalik!

I Am In Ketosis

Let me formally announce to the planet that I am in ketosis.  Yes.  It has been since February 26, 2019 that I decided to try ketogenic diet.  And it has been a grueling struggle to keep under ketosis.

Reason behind this is because I live in a country that is infested with sugar and carbohydrates, the two fatal enemies of this zany diet.  Filipinos like me will definitely go insane if their meal does not include rice.  Rice is in every Pinoy meal from breakfast, to lunch to dinner and even up to midnight snack.  Even desserts of Filipinos can be made of the scandalous rice!  For Filipinos, rice is life!

With regards to sugar, the Philippines has the sweetest varieties of tropical fruits on the planet and only a limited number of cooked dishes are not laced with sugar here in my country.  In fact, it is a well-known fact on the entire planet that only in the Philippines can you find a sweet spaghetti.  Hello Jollibee!  And even the world renowned Filipino Adobo, for it to taste even better must be spiked with the notorious sugar.

Philippines also is so unlike the western countries where keto friendly food and dishes are easily available.  Hello Whole Foods Market!  Aside from being so insanely expensive, It is really a struggle to maintain and retain under ketosis.  In fact, for the last fourteen days that I have been in ketosis, I have survived four social events – including that of Nengkoy’s big birthday party – where cakes, pastas, rice meals and sweet drinks were highlighted.

starting to learn how to cook this expensive keto friendly noodles…

I can actually consider that my reduction in the consumption of sugar and carbs was even harder than when I stopped smoking.  It is because I was born and grew up consuming these that resulted to an autopilot sagacity of my whole persona for rice and sweet treats.  It is unlike smoking, which I started when I was an adult and ceased puffing nicotine also during adulthood.  It is therefore not surprising that I had the worst cold turkey when I was starting ketogenic diet otherwise known as the keto flu for the ketogenic language!

But I guess for every struggle, there is like what Ms. Universe Catriona Gray consider as the “silver lining”.  It has been only fourteen days yet I already lost a whopping 12 pounds!

hope to achieve my ideal weight soon…

Nakaka-aning aning sa hirap!

I Wanna Sing In A Pub Choir!

I think I am a rare Filipino breed.  Reason behind this is because I cannot sing!

When I was in Jerusalem, I was able to meet a bunch of cool Jews in a coffee shop who were celebrating Purim. My sister Ester who toured with me decided to stay in the hotel to read about the Holy Bible’s Queen Ester, her namesake.

These young Jewish people were surprised to know that I was a Filipino travelling as a tourist in their country.  One guy then uttered to the group that Filipinos seem to have the genes for good singing voice. The whole bunch of these cool happy people then started teasing and entreating that I should sing a song for them.

a stock photo of my trip to jerusalem… it’s not rare meeting cool strangers in that city

I tried doing it but they obviously did not liked what they’re were hearing.  I stopped and did not finish.   I was like Cameron Diaz singing “I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself” in the movie My Best Friend’s Wedding.  After my singing, they were gracious enough to clap their hands while doubting if I am really is a Filipino and simply moved on and continued on with the Purim revelry with me.

I remembered all these when I happen to bumped into a fascinating YouTube video regarding a joint where hundreds of strangers inside the pub would learn and sing together a popular pop song.  Watch this…

Internet indicates that Pub Choir phenomenon started two years ago in Brisbane, Australia and the fun and fascinating concept/activity has been booming and expanding all throughout the Land Under. 

And if this phenomenon would finally arrive here in Manila, I would be one of the few Filipinos who could not sing would enlist and would definitely sing my heart out in this event. I and my rare kind of Filipino breed would definitely unleash the Cameron Diaz in all of us!

Handa AWIT!

 

 

 

Malou’s Prayer 2019

In my country, the Philippines, any corporate event or gathering will not be complete without the Invocation otherwise known as the opening prayer.  It is as if the event will not be successful if the organizers chose not to supplicate and plea to the heavenly spirits for guidance, strength and protection while the affair is on-going.

Surprisingly, one of the most popular posts I have in this blog is an Invocation.  I often see my blog’s stats sour high during Christmas season because folks assigned to lead the prayer in their respective event, program or party seem to search online on samples of beautiful prayers.  I can attest that Malou’s prayer has been so popular in the past few years! 

needs to have my photo before the whole stressful yet fun event starts!
malou & edwin, the designated hosts of the program

Last January 21, being the yearly designated organizer of a company’s Employees’ Night Grand Ball, I again designated Malou to compose and lead a gorgeous and inspiring prayer.  Despite having so much going on in my head that night – anxiety, pressure, worries and apprehensions – to ensure and make the party a success, Malou’s pleasing prayer consigned my being at ease.

And because of that, I again requested Malou for a copy.  She said okay when I told her that I am to post it in my blog.  Here it is…

Dear Lord,

Thank you for the blessings of 2018.

Thank you for bringing us together tonight and giving us another reason to celebrate our successes, our friendships, our teamwork, our lives.

We thank you most of all Lord for giving us 40 fruitful years and may we be blessed with so much more.

As we face the New Year, may You grant us the strength and the courage to live each day to the fullest, being a reflection of Your love to each other.

May you grant us the wisdom to perform our daily jobs and bless us with the inspiration to carry on each day.

Deliver us Lord from everything that will destroy us and help us to put our trust into your perfect care.

May we be to each other a beacon of light, a loving and forgiving friend, a strength to hold on to, a joy to look forward to, and an inspiration to keep us going.

May You bless our company with another 40 years of success and may we be a blessing to the people we serve.

All good things are not possible without You, Oh Lord.

 All glory and honor be to You Lord God, now and forever, Amen!

 

Gondohhh, di ba???

Shimmering Soumaya Museum

Modern and present earthlings’ visit and holiday to Mexico City would now no longer be complete without visiting the Soumaya Museum.  Hailed as a new landmark, this weird looking building in the city is a private museum owned by the richest living earthling Carlos Slim. 

Named after the wife of the owner who passed away in 1999, Soumaya Museum building is one of the weirdest-looking modern architecture that I have ever seen!  It is so weird that I could not actually ascertain its geometrical shape.  Add to its weirdness is its being windowless and that the whole building glimmers and sparkles when hit by the rays of the sunshine!

And since the owner is filthy rich, admission inside the museum is free. Only the blind would miss the bronze cast of Rodin’s The Thinker upon entering the open airy lobby.  There’s also a colorful mural (considered to be one of the last works) done by Diego Rivera pointing toward the restrooms.

the lobby!

 

la puerta del infierno (the gates of hell) Ang taray ng title!

look at how tiny the people are at the bottom of this photo

Art collections found inside Soumaya Museum are all so grand and ostentatious.  It is dominated by the great works European artists, including El Greco, Van Gogh, Degas, Matisse and Picasso.  There are also a spectacular section of religious art which includes the Mexican portrait of the Virgin of Guadalupe, the Spanish painting of the Virgin of Toledo and surprisingly intricate ivory sculptures of Jesus hanged on the Cross done by Filipino artisans.

And like in any other museum, it has been my tradition of choosing a collection that I am most impressed with.  Soumaya Museum had three amazing collections that enticed, engrossed and charmed my wits.

El Pansador (The Thinker by Auguste Rodin). I need to have a photo with this masterpiece
Joven de Bou-saada (Young Girl of Bou-saada). It looks so real, it scares me!

If art feeds the soul, Soumaya Museum would definitely have you so full! This was indeed a very enriching adventure! 

Hugis ano?