The 100 Day Project

Kabul Beauty School

I believe that we all should maximize our skills to help make the world a better place. In the case if Debbie Rodriguez, it meant teaching the art and business of hairdressing to the women of Kabul, in Afghanistan.

Reading the New York Times Bestseller Kabul Beauty School, I could not help but think about the plight of women all over the world. How many of us take for granted the relative freedoms we experience on a daily basis, and how different another person’s normal could be really like. It is great that there are aid workers risking life and limbs to help make life a little better for other people. More importantly, I am grateful for dreamers and movers who are unlocking possibilities and opening doors where there used to be hopelessness and a quiet acceptance of the cards they have been dealt with.

I also could not stop wondering whether it is now possible to be a tourist in Afghanistan. Despite the security concerns, and the lack of first world amenities, the author painted a picture of Kabul for me that I would love to explore. I have no idea what the situation on the ground is these days, but I would like to know if it would be possible to visit someday.


13 of 100!

Kabul Beauty School is my eleventh book for this year. I set 18 books for this year’s Reading Challenge at Goodreads but it would be great to exceed that by a mile!

2018 Reading ChallengeVera has
read 11 books toward
her goal of
18 books.


I love driving! I really do. I don’t ever really mind when my husband asks me to drive him somewhere, or to pick him up. Except when he falls asleep and leaves me to battle my own sleepiness while stuck in EDSA traffic. I’ll do the driving, but he’s gotta do the entertaining, you know what I mean? πŸ™‚

I would love to take roadtrips more often. Straight boring highways make me sleepy, but winding roads, going up and around mountains, or navigating inner city new-to-me roads – those keep me wide awake. Hmm. Yes, let’s take more roadtrips.

Over a year ago, in January, I had an accident. I was on my way to work, and at past 11 in the evening, it would have been just a 10 to 15-minute drive. One minute I was changing radio stations, just about 50 meters before I turn left at a cross-roads. The next, well, I heard the sound of what seemed to me like crushing metal.

I had made that last crossroads safely, but have no memory of it. I was about a hundred meters away now, at another crossroads – apparently an accident-prone one. I had no idea that I had fallen asleep. It was scary. I crashed into the drivers’ side of the other car so my first thought was to open my window and ask if he was okay. Which thankfully, he was.

One might say that this accident was my crossroads. It had driven the point that I needed to seek help for all that uncontrollable sleepiness. I wasn’t going to wait for another accident that might cost lives, or limbs.

Since then, I’ve had my sleep apnea officially diagnosed, and I’ve been sleeping with a CPAP machine (well, maybe not all the time, but as much as possible). Whenever we have to drive, we also make it a point that I get some rest. Or, that if I get really sleepy, we look for a safe space and park for a quick nap. When driving alone, I munch on nuts or chocolate when I have to. Lately, I feel like things have been better.

Driving is such a big responsibility. Your life, your passengers’ lives, as well as the lives of pedestrians and other motorists are in your hands. That’s been on my mind lately.

I wonder if every driver thinks of it this way?

Lost in Space

There is something about being under the weather that makes it conducive for binge watching a new TV series – although truth be told, I’d take any excuse to Netflix and chill all day.

On Monday, I finally got to meet the Robinsons who call the Jupiter 2 their home.

While I was really amazed by Technology, and how smart and useful they all were, and how beautiful that strange new planet was, I could not help but ponder the bigger questions such as:

  • With it’s finite resources, what will become of the human race when Earth finally has nothing more to give?
  • Are there secret task forces and initiatives right now that are already looking for a new planet humans can colonize?
  • What if there really were planets out there, trillions of light years away, that are just as beautiful as our Earth? Would we know better, and learn to take better care of it?
  • If evacuating to a new planet is possible, who decides on who gets to go? Who deserves to go?
  • Pinoys are all over the world and are doing great things, surely there will be a lot of Pinoys in the new world?
  • Are we really completely doomed, without alien tech?
  • What can we do now to slow this natural death, or at least to not accelerate it?

Surely, the demise of the one planet we call home is far off in the future. A future that we won’t be part of, anyway, because we would have died of natural causes, or man-made diseases. But that far off future would someday become tomorrow. Have you ever thought about that?

11 of 100

Oh, it’s just a list

In July 2012, I decided to take on the Day Zero challenge, and managed to share a (partial) list of 56 tasks (should be 101) to be completed in 1001 days. If you’re curious as to what tasks made it to the list, check this 101 in 1001 post. I will be updating that to reflect which ones I already got to do.

The list is almost six years old now and it’s more than double the 1001-day timeline originally set to accomplish all the tasks. Today I look back at the list and realize that based on what made it to the list, there are some things that changed, while some remain the same. And that’s how life goes, right?

Going through the list feels so much like #ThrowbackThursday. It reminds me of how things were, back then:

  • I was missing baking, and was still dreaming of a full-time home based baking business.
  • I was still very much into digital scrapbooking. Although truth be told, I was more of a hoarder of supplies and a stalker of galleries and wasn’t doing much actual scrapbooking.
  • We loved photography. I guess we still do, even if we don’t use big cameras anymore and just use our phones, even on vacation. But now, I want a new camera (or a better camera phone)! πŸ™‚
  • Sewing and quilting is something I was interested in, and still am.
  • Crochet didn’t make it on this list πŸ™
  • Reading is LIFE. My pile of books keep getting higher and the to-be-read list just keeps getting longer and longer.

Then I felt worried. Doesn’t my list seem filled with trivialities? Was it reflective of the life I was crafting?

Yes, and Maybe.

Yes, at first one might think the tasks are trivial and so simple. But that’s the nature of the challenge – to be simple and clear enough that you can actually do them. So that’s not such a bad thing.

But does it show what kind of life I was creating? Maybe. I think at the core are all those things I want to have in my life. But I probably didn’t approach list-making from that perspective. I didn’t start with – what kind of life do I want and what do I do to get that? I just made a list.

The Good Life

Essentially, we all want a good life. But our definition of a good life might not all be the same. What is that for me? In all the busy-ness of life, am I still making sure that the steps I take are leading me to that life? Is the way I am living right now already part of that life? Because it should. The good life should not be a faraway concept. Not something to envision only for our future selves. We deserve it now.

Of course, oftentimes we find ourselves in a place we never would have wanted to be in. Things don’t always go as planned, or wrong decisions were made. Rather than staying stuck, we must take consistent action aimed at breaking away from those situations. Easier said than done. I’m not in a very bad place – just not exactly where I always thought I would be (even that keeps changing) – yet I’m still not very consistent at taking action. What more if one was in a terrible situation?

Wow. I did not see that thought bubble coming up when I started this post. But I’m pretty glad I went there.

10 of 100


Yesterday, we endured 12 hours of no electricity.

The BAD:

It was difficult trying to sleep in 33-degree temperature with no airconditioning or electric fans.

The only migraine trigger that still exists for me now is heat and (over) sun exposure. I was already feeling bad after a long shower and sitting in front of an electric fan, the power outage made it even worse.

It took Meralco 12 hours to restore service. It would have been understandable if it really was so difficult to address. What makes this response time unaccepatable is that:

  • It took Meralco six hours to get a team to inspect the transformer that got busted. Why did it take so long for them to get here?
  • After inspection, the team said that a boom truck would arrive shortly to change a fuse.
  • I don’t know what time the boom truck got to our street, but they were not prepared to do the repairs needed. Hindi daw sila na-inform na papalitan ang fuse. So they left to get the necessary tools/parts, and came back at midnight.

This really got me wondering about Meralco’s Service level targets. What guarantee do they give consumers when it comes to duration and frequency of power interruptions, response and restoration times? A quick Google search didn’t get me anywhere, except this 2009 Philippine Star article that has no specifics.

I also visited the Meralco website but could not find the information I was looking for. What I haven’t done is send an inquiry thru their Facebook or Contact Us Pages. That will be a Research activity I am saving for another time.

I recognize that we are better off compared to other areas – we don’t experience regular power interruptions, we have power when some areas still don’t. But, we still deserve better service. As consumers, we demand it.

Now, it wasn’t all bad during those 12 hours. There was also some good:

  • Spending time with this happy baby. Because it was too hot indoors, I went down to the common area to hangout with family. Bekah sure enjoyed all the attention she was getting πŸ™‚

  • Halo-halo. No explanations needed.

How was your day?

9 of 100 done!

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