Done it + Seen it

The MOA Eye

On Tuesday last week, February 21, 2012, I took my first ferris wheel ride. Yep, it took 30 years before I would step in on a ferris wheel gondola. I’ve always just chickened out. SmileI shared the moment with the boyfriend – who almost didn’t get on. It was also his first time!

Who's afraid? Not me!

It was a week day and we both had work but we went to the Mall of Asia anyway to meet up with Alfred’s parents, his older brother Andy, and little cutie Alphonso, his nephew. We were there for a birthday dinner to celebrate Tatay Fred’s 70th birthday!

Here’s the boyfriend’s parents inside the roomy gondola:

Alfred's Mom and Dad

The rest of them had been at the Mall hours before because little Alphonso who’s only 3 years old wanted some play time. I arrived home from work at past 2pm so Alfred and I were only out on the road at past 3pm en route to the MOA. Traffic and wrong turns made our travel time longer – must have been 430PM already when we arrived at the MOA.

We hung out at The Creamery while Phonso cooled down with his favorite ice cream cone. Then we headed out to the bay side restaurants to get dinner. While Alfred and his brother went to market to buy the seafood we would have cooked at one of the restaurants, I took these shots of the MOA Eye –purportedly the biggest ferris wheel in the country today at 180 feet tall:

MOA Eye from afar

MOA Eye Closer

Photo Feb 21, 5 47 29 PM

 

Alphonso was excited and really wanted to ride. It wasn’t difficult to convince Nanay and Tatay to go. But it was a challenge to convince Alfred that this was the day we would finally get on this ride. But convince him we did, and he even paid for it – PhP 150 pesos per person, even for the little 3-year old boy.

Each of the 35 gondolas is air-conditioned, and seats up to 6. There are a few VIP gondolas that offer more privacy – you can’t see inside. They aren’t in use yet and will cost extra. I don’t see the point though. People are too busy either getting scared of being so high, or admiring the view, they won’t have the time to check out the couple next door.

Photo Feb 21, 5 57 05 PM

As for me, I was busy being scared. I didn’t move around much and only took a few photos.

 

Photo Feb 21, 6 05 56 PMPhoto Feb 21, 6 03 21 PM

The ride only took about 10 minutes. It wasn’t shaky at all. I felt quite stable actually.

I’d like to ride again, maybe at night so I can see the lights all around.

For now, I am just proud to say that I no longer fear the Ferris Wheel! Smile

Cebu’s Unique ATMs

While driving around Cebu, I could not help but notice these types found along the sidewalks:

ATM Badian

At first, the boyfriend said that they were loading machines or something, but I didn’t believe him. They were everywhere! I tried snapping photos while inside a moving cab but I never got a clear shot – just a bunch of blurry ones. The driver (who doubled as our tour guide) finally told us what they were: ATMs – Automatic Tubig Machines!

Cebuanos need not go thirsty – there were water stations all over the place. I daresay there’s more of them than there are sari-sari stores. Hehe. You drop coins in, take a plastic cup, and have yourself some cool water. SmileI didn’t get to try it though.

This particular ATM in the picture is located just outside the Matutinao Elementary School in Badian, south of Cebu. Even three hours away from the city, these ATMs exist! Smile

Checkout the my yet-to-be-completed series on our Cebu 2011 trip! Smile


Chill Out

First, read about The Trip (or Cebu 2011 Part 1) and Be Resorts (Where we stayed)

On our first morning in Cebu, we headed down to the small wading pool by the beach to hangout. We weren’t due for the City Tour until around lunch time so we had plenty of time to kill and play around in the water. It was also Tixie’s debut as  a waterproof camera. 🙂 All photos in this post were shot using Tixie.

I spent a lot of time that morning laying on a lounge chair, with a huge umbrella shielding me from the heat of the sun. This, pretty much, was my view:

It was nice to just relax and chill out. Sounds ironic because we were at the beach! But really – it was very cool that day, not too windy but enough to keep the heat from biting. While lounging we talked about our hopes and dreams. In particular, I was dreaming about staying just like so for weeks and not having to go to an office. Oh to be able to live the life! We joked about finding jobs at call centers in Cebu just so we can have weekends like that, haha. Or of me just working online – I could whip out my tiny but powerful laptop and type and surf away – anywhere. I could literally earn while chilling out at the same time! No more having to worry about general management jobs and all the troubles and pressures these jobs bring. Of course, things are just never that easy…

So – back to the pool to have the water wake us up!

Thanks to Tixie, it was all about goofing off and snapping crazy photos 🙂

I’d have to say though, Alfred gets to have so many nice shots and I don’t! He tried getting underwater snapshots of me but I either look like a whale or all he gets are bubbles, hahahahaa 🙂

Oh by the way, these next two photos were supposed to be part of the Be Resorts post but I forgot to upload them.

This is a playset in the hotel’s recreation room. A kiddie sized sala set! I almost stayed behind to hangout here (but I think it was more because of the Rockband set in the room than for this :))

Now this is how the beds look like, there’s two in the room:

 

Sooooo… enough for today. See you around soon 🙂

Be Resorts Mactan – Where We Stayed

This post is Part 2 of our Cebu 2011 vacation series 🙂 Read this, if you want: Cebu 2011 Part 1 – The Trip.

This is where we stayed:

That’s the Be Resort in Mactan. We got a good deal, about 30% discount on the room because the boyfriend knew someone who knew the Sales Manager. The room normally goes for 5400 pesos per night, with buffet breakfast for two.  However, we didn’t get the room upgrade we thought we were getting. No complaints though because we still had both a pool and a sea view:

Nice isn’t it? This isn’t really a veranda, but it’s more of a window. We had what looked like a sliding door that could only be opened a few inches to let the cool sea breeze in.

I loved the hotel as soon as I walked into the lobby. They had mismatched pieces of furniture all over, lots of pretty chairs (I haven’t organized ALL of our photos from the trip yet, so if I find more worthy to share, I’ll post again):

I so wanted to sit on this red chair, what with its comfy white pillows! But I wasn’t too sure it could carry my weight, hahahaha 🙂

My fave chairs have got to be the set right by the elevators on the 3rd floor, where we stayed. As soon as the elevator doors part, what you’ll see is a nice clean mirror above a table and two matching chairs with floral upholstery. There’s a small picture frame on the table that tells what floor you’re on. Match that with the black and white floral wallpaper and it’s just a cute scene! I wanted to go up the other floors and see how the other sets looked like but I didn’t want to show up in the hotel security cameras looking suspicious and snooping around! Specially not with my own cameras snapping away 🙂

Okay… So there’s lots more to tell about Be Resort, but it will have to wait. I want photos to accompany what I say so let me go and sort those out first.

How’s your weekend going?

Cebu 2011 Part 1 – The Trip

The airline tickets for this trip was purchased about six months ago in August 2010, during a seat sale.

It cost us about this much for two round trip tickets (MNL-CEB-MNL):

  • Base Fare: PHP 2,796.00
  • VAT: PHP 339.12
  • Aviation Security Fee: PHP 30.00
  • Web Admin Fee Fee: PHP 224.00
  • World Wide Fund: PHP 240.00
  • Total: PHP 3,629.12

The World Wide Fund item is to offset the carbon footprints for the plane ride 🙂

I know of some people who have gotten their fare for a much lower price – 17 pesos! – but I don’t have their luck and speed when it comes to making online reservations. I also remember regular local airfare costing no lower than 6k roundtrip per person a few years ago, so I know that I’m not getting a bad deal with this price.

A Cord Taxi took us to the airport (this is the name of the new World taxis), and cost only 200 pesos from QC to Pasay. We arrived with a lot of time to spare for our 1515 flight. This despite the fact that I came at noon time from work when I planned to have been home by 10AM. The line at the check-in counters was quite long but we found ways to entertain ourselves ;). We didn’t have much money on us so we decided not to grab any snacks before the flight. I took a few photos with my BB and tweeted them too!

V for Vera!

And the sign pointing to Gate 133

As well as Alfred while waiting to board

NAIA Terminal 3 is a huge place and the waiting areas are spacious and normally very cold. The Gate for our flight was at the ground floor where people from three or four other flights were waiting to board. The place was packed, most of the seats were taken! I guess that’s a good sign for local tourism. The boyfriend played a game on the iPad while I started reading one of the books I brought with me for the trip – Can You Keep a Secret?. I didn’t get too far with reading though – I ended up taking a nap until boarding time 🙂

Since we were at the ground floor, I’d already expected to walk to the plane on the ground rather than through a tube. We actually had to board a shuttle that took us to where our plane was:

While waiting for the rest of the passengers to board the back bus, I snapped a few more photos 🙂

And this was the plane that took us to Mactan, safely:

Although boarding was on time, takeoff was delayed a bit. There was a lot of traffic at the runway. I wasn’t surprised, seeing that our flight was rescheduled a week or two earlier. It was supposed to be the noon flight but was pushed back by three hours.

It was a full flight and all seats were taken. There were a few babies too although I didn’t notice them cry so much because of the pressure on my ears. I thought I was going to endure the pain and get a migraine on my first night in Cebu, until I remembered I could always do the diver’s equalizing trick to relieve my ears of that pressure! I had to do it a few times until after arriving in Cebu, but it was well worth it.

It was a smooth flight, except for the boyfriend spilling his orange juice all over both our legs (yes it was Minute Maid, no I did not win the blog contest :(). Oh, a tip when you’re taking Cebu Pacific on budget airfare – bring your own drinks. The drinks that normally cost 20 pesos at your corner grocery store is sold at 50 pesos! Since it’s a short flight anyway, just drink lots of water before the flight and you’ll be packed until touchdown.

I’ve always commented how we don’t have a lot of photos together, so while on the plane, we took a few goofy ones! haha 🙂

From Mactan International Airport, we took a metered taxi to the hotel. It probably took 15-20 minutes and the fare was about 300 pesos, I felt that that was too high compared to what we had to pay from QC to Pasay, but what the heck.

So that’s part 1 of our Cebu trip. Stay tuned for the next one 🙂

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