Back to Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia. Freedom (almost) achieved

Back to Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia. Freedom (almost) achieved

At last! I’m free!!

Well not really. I still have stuff to do back home in the Philippines. But after 2 years of not traveling out of the country, I felt like a bird suddenly out of a cage.

birds in Nepal

Don’t worry I’m not the wild bird type :P

My feelings were mixed of tears of joy and a bit of angst that I wasn’t able to do this regularly like other people who travels to other countries or continent like it’s just going to the Mall. But then I realized, I am still lucky coz there are people who lived their whole lives not traveling.

Or worst, some people travel just because they need to survive.

So I’m contented and my Maslows Heirarchy of Needs is fulfilled.. I feel grateful dear Universe.

destination addiction

I am currently in Thailand, then will go to Vietnam, then Malaysia. Traveling on a budget to make sure other people who don’t have so much budget can travel too. Although I need to make sure I give the right information to the right readers, because you know…. hello thieves. ^_^ I do hope I have converted them to not steal this time.

Books to read while you travel part 3

And I thought I could read more now because most of the time I’m just at home. But the irony is I have read lesser books these previous years.

My mind was pre occupied with getting online projects so I can go back to traveling so wasn’t able to focus so much on this passion. Interestingly, most of the books that I’ve read are all about financial literacy. I hope I’ve learned about them because I’m sick and tired of traveling and going home broke.. and I don’t want to be an OFW who become modern day slaves or second rate citizens in other countries, then go home and live a millionaire lifestyle in a few days, and go broke again forcing them to go back to being an OFW.. so as not to become like the previous chapters of my life, I tried to create more passive income streams so I earn while traveling.

Speaking of income stream, I’ve been researching on alternative medicines and alternative lifestyles so I can compile them in an ebook to sell.. the money received will be invested in travel scholarships and searching for more paradise on earth so others who belong to the low economy bracket get the chance to travel too. If you want to pre-order, let me know.

Meanwhile, here are the books that I’ve read these past years that I haven’t blogged yet.. I don’t necessarily recommended them but it’s still always a good habit to read.

1. Fat Girl Fairy Boy by C. McConkie – this is about a movie star and a gay makeup artist, their posh lifestyle, and how their life turned around when they were kidnapped in South America. The book was a light read, there were many back stories starting from the history of their mother to how they were born and grew up, but it adds up to a good storyline. I like the story because its an adventure, and reminds me of my past loves, whom some have became more beautiful than me, but I’m happy if they are happy ^_^..

fat girl fairy boy

2. Gatecrasher by Sophie Kinsella – a story of a social climber who victimize and attracts widowed men during their wife’s funerals. Then after the widow fall in love and gives money, the gatecrasher then disappears with the money, then finds another victim.
I got the book from a friend who was staying in Boracay and out of curiousity, I wanted to know how social climbers go up the ladder. So I guess, this is one of the ways. #sarcasm101


3. Ang pera na hindi bitin – this is a highly recommended book about financial literacy translated into local Filipino language. Lots of lessons to learn specially in the art of saving and investing. I really like the part of the book where the author writes about those who won the lotto, and end up getting broke again. It’s a lesson I don’t want to experience in my lifetime.. well I don’t bet on lottos anyway:

“Missourian Janite Lee won $18 million in 1993. Lee was generous to a variety of causes, giving to politics, education, and the community. But eight years after winning, Lee filed for bankcruptcy with only $700 left in two bank accounts and no cash on hand”

“Abraham Shakespeare, a truck driver’s assistant, was constantly hounded for his $30 million lotto winnings. Shakespeare’s brother , Robert Brown, told The Associated Press that Shakespeare often wished he had never bought the winning ticket, quoting him as saying, “I’d been better off broke” In April of 2009, Shakespear was murdered and burried in the backyard of his friend.

4. Bridget Jones diary by Helen Fielding – don’t judge me. I just found this book to be 50 pesos only so I bought it out of curiousity. Some people watch movies, I read books. The book doesn’t appeal to me or my current lifestyle despite being single for so long :P.. it’s about a working lady having a relationship with her boss.. so not my lifestyle coz I’m not working a 9-5 day job

The book is just interesting is all I have to say.. At least I get to know other lifestyles.

5. 10 habits of millionnaires by Nick Lee – one habit that strikes me most is that Millionnaires do what they love to do. They love their career or work or whatever they do, so work doesn’t feel like work.. and then eventually, money comes in. It is important to make sure you are happy with the way you are creating your income… I do know so many people who are getting fat paychecks yet very unhappy in their lives, they might be millionnaires but to be truly rich, you must love what you are doing so you can be happy.

Also, it mentions how millionnaires give back:

– donations thru charities
– mentoring and coaching their juniors
– provide a platform for colleagues to develop his or her career
– fund startups to give confidence for younger generations for their spirit of entrepreneurship
– give advices to fellow peers (or even competitors) for them to achieve breakthrough in their businesses

For those who think they are poor and have nothing to give, that’s what I think too because monetary wise, I’m not yet a millionnaire (hello cyber thieves, nothing to declare).. but you can give in so many ways:

– lend time to help a friend in need, whether that means a listening ear, an errand, a shoulder to lean on in times of trouble
– volunteer your skills or services, some organizations even give allowance for those who cannot afford yet are very skilled
– plant and tend a garden, and share the produce to your neighbor, it’s so nice to give.. that’s the true feeling of richness even without the money involved.

6. Investing Strategies For The Newbies – there’s no indicated author here. It’s just a PDF file that I got somewhere in the cyber space. It teaches the basics of investing and trading in the stock market. I’ve been investing since 2015 and learning how to trade. Some blue chip stocks that I bought are roller coaster but I’m using the sinusoidal wave to gain instead. Good and simple book, it’s just a few pages and worth reading. If you want it, let me know and I’ll email it to you.

7. Bakit baliktad magbasa ang mga Pilipino – the book highlights the interesting culture of people in the Philippines in a funny and punny way. Interesting read for those who wants to learn more about Filipinos. It’s a bit outdated already as culture and economy of the Philippines are changing. But it’s still a good read.

bakit baliktad magbasa ang pilipino

For those who wants to know what books I have read before, click here for more book reviews. Hope you enjoyed reading and gained a wisdom or two.

10 Shopping Lifehacks in Metro Manila

10 Shopping Lifehacks in Metro Manila

I don’t like traveling to Metro Manila that much.. the traffic and sea of people don’t want me to go there…

However, because I got a client that pays me to manage a nationwide audit of a tech brand, I got the chance to go and travel around Metro Manila. I took advantage of it to observe different classes of society from the super high end where elitists hang out to food tripping in a place where poverty and tokhang activities are “normal”.. the economic gap in Metro Manila is so high between super rich and super poor, yet they still manage to live near each other.

I also gathered a few tips here and there so you won’t feel ripped off afterwards when shopping. The money you save from this lifehack can make you travel further.. or you can pay it forward as you wish.

shangri la

Here they are. Enjoy and feel free to forward to your frugal minimalist friends too.

1. When you’re a small built, try to shop at the kids section. I do this when buying branded posh clothes with the excuse of buying for my nephew or niece but in reality, I’m actually buying for me. The price there is half the price of the adult counterpart.. sometimes you get to save 50% even without the announced discount.

2. Speaking of announced. Sometimes stores doesn’t announce their sales. This is specially applicable in posh stores. They do offer discounts or sales, just don’t be shy to ask. Because if you don’t ask, they won’t tell.

3. Use rewards points from credit cards, SM Advantage, Robinsons rewards cards or any other similar reward cards. I was able to reduce the price of the stuff that I bought because I got some rewards points.

4. If you have a senior citizen or PWD friend, bring them to grocery shop with you and get 20% discount. There was a time when seniors and PWDs are not treated well by society, now I see families bringing their oldies in the Mall.. good behavior change.

5. Take advantage of free makeups at some cosmetic stores… I did this once because the saleslady took pity on my oily skin so she did some charity work on me and gave me free makeup.

6. You think an item is expensive online? If you’re in the boondocks and can’t go to the city immediately, try to ask a friend if it’s more cheaper in her location.. then you can ask her to buy and ship it to you instead.

7. Mystery shopping to get stuff for free. Sometimes I get expensive stuff for free in exchange of being critic to some branded items. It’s fun and you get freebies in return.


8. Bottled water in the restaurant costs 25 pesos, but if you buy in the grocery section of the mall, or even in the vendor outside the Mall, it will only cost 10 php. So tiis ganda until you reach the grocery section, grab the 10 peso water, line up for 15 mins, and hope you still have your senses by the time you finally pay the drink. Sometimes, there are free water in food courts. Better bring your own water bottle to minimize the use of plastics.

9. 1 whole chicken is 160 pesos, 2 pc chicken at a fastfood has the same price. So sometimes, I’d rather buy a whole chicken at the department store then cook it at home.

10. KFC shots is cheaper and sometimes has more meat than 1 pc chicken with rice… not a sponsored post.. Although I wish it is.

A guide to buffets in Metro Manila

A guide to buffets in Metro Manila

Whenever I go to Metro Manila, I always look forward to do food trips.

Let’s admit it, despite the abundant food in the province, there’s not enough choices of food dishes to eat. That’s why I urge people from the province to travel too, so their creativity be nudge a bit and invent more dishes than their traditional ones.


vietnamese food

I do this when I go back to our forest in Antique, I try to cook different dishes and hopefully my nieces and nephews gets to continue the hobby of cooking foreign dishes too.

Going back to Metro Manila, food choices are unlimited. Korean, Japanese, Indian, French, American cuisines are within reach.. I just need to be careful because I don’t want to be obese because of all these eating.. excessive fat is not healthy too. Here’s a sample of my food intake at buffets:

metro manila buffet2
Food trip is indeed one of my favorite activities to do whenever I travel.. and it’s best to experiene this eating activity in buffets. Because all types of food are in front of your eyes. Sushi on one table, turkey roast on the other table, then unlimited cakes are literally almost like 5 steps away.. oh and the drinks, you can break away from the usual softdrinks, iced tea or orange from fast foods, and delight your taste buds with chai, melon, chocolate, all seasons, and all other drinks possible.

buffet in chiang mai
Did I made you feel hungry? I’m sorry. I feel sorry more if you’re in the mountains reading this and suddenly you crave for your favorite food.. but then it’s like miles away and ingredients are faaarview.

To make those who are in far flung areas feel better, rest in the thought that at least you won’t be obese when you’re not always on a buffet.. too much fat is not healthy too you know, enjoy your fresh food.

Here’s my mom not being impressed in a japanese buffet restaurant.

mom in buffet
Anyway, there’s a catch when you eat at Buffets.. they’re expensive.. coz it’s Metro Manila dear, everything here is expensive and requires money.

Now I miss those buffets in Thailand where 100 baht can solve your hungry tummy specially if you can eat once but the food intake is for two days.

veggie buffet

However, I found ways to hack this, thank you to friends who are also lifehackers. There’s still ways to eat buffets without breaking the bank. Here’s a few ways:

1. Enjoy buffets in parties. This is good for those who have wide friends in the Metro. However, if you don’t have that many friends, welcome to my world. We suck at this tip LOL

2. If it’s your birthday, you get freebies in expensive buffets, just get another paying person and you’ve got no problem. So far, I’ve tried it out in Vikings, Dads Saisaki, Cabalen, and Yakimix… don’t forget to diet before the event.

3. There are actually buffet that are not very expensive and costs only around 300 pesos or 6-8USD. I don’t like to promote it because once I do, when I go back, it might be toooo fully booked and I won’t be able to enjoy my buffet… but feel free to ask and email me and I’ll virtually whisper the tip to you.

4. No birthdays and no parties in sight? There are conferences where member participants are allowed to get 1 companion for free, if you’re worthy, you’ll be invited.. if you are worthy. ^_^ If you’re just another regular gal like me, the next tip is always applicable.

5. Are you located in the province? You might not enjoy buffet selection of international dishes but there’s always fiesta you know… and the best thing about it? It’s free.

metro manila buffet3
Here you go. Do you have some tips to share? Please put them in the comment section and let’s give blessings to others. May you find happiness in food theraphy.

Life and Travel Quotes

Life and Travel Quotes

Hey there. ^_^ Miss me? If yes, thanks, I miss ranting too. If no, why are you still here? :P

The silence was a needed break so I can re-align myself to my true purpose.. so i can tell stories because I truly want to tell stories.. and the silence took a while.. it actually felt like i wanted to be silent from the cyberspace forever.. although I’m sure it will be a wrong move because I make my income online… but let’s see what the future holds.

Life and Travel Quote 1. If traveling was free, you’d never see me again.

if travel was free you'd never hear from me again

so here i am writing another piece of my life’s chapter with what happened these past few months.. not really sure if there’s someone who’s still putting up with reading my brain farts.. but hey I’ve learned this in life:

Life and Travel Quote 2. Dance like no one is watching.

dance like no one is watching

Travel out of the country took a back seat. Writing was hushed. And my creative side was burried. I thought I’m not gonna get my mojo back but here I am at 10pm, pumping some words from my brain. It’s only trickling at the moment so hopefully coffee fuel will do it’s job..

I was traveling but more like mall hopping because I was paid to do it. Yeah I have weird jobs.. did you know once upon a time, I also got paid to break stuff? That was weirder.

My passions were set aside.. but i need to find a way to light it again otherwise the gift of travel and story telling might go away forever.

Life and Travel Quote 3. They tried to bury me, they didn’t know I’m a seed.

they tried to bury me they didnt know im a seed

These past few months, I was focusing on making money. And yep I did made money. I have invested in several income streams and observed what gave me the highest returns.. and to my surprise, it was a farm.

Unfortunately, it was not our family farm, I’ll do a root cause analysis on this later on. So hail to all the farmers, maybe the millionnaire next door is also applicable to the PH too.. I’m not yet a millionaire btw (hello cyber thieves) but I’m fascinated in the potential of the agricultural sector in the PH.. There are still farmers that are poor but there are social enterprises that are helping these farmers out.. let’s hope the future is bright. So to those who are farmers, specially the young ones, despite your simple appearance, without you, we will not have food on the table, I salute you.

Life and Travel Quote 4. It is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the eye.

it is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the eye - little prince

So I was focusing on work, money and creating passive income streams.. but I should remind myself that it should not make the world go around.. I badly need play.. I just need to stay put for a while because I don’t want to go out and travel again then be broke and collect mishaps.. and you know the feeling when you’re sick and suddenly stumble on the road and people just stare? That’s what I felt most of the times, thank you fair weather friends.

I’m so done with that..

Life and Travel Quote 5. I wanted a rainbow so I can put up with the storm.

I wanted a rainbow so I'm putting up with the storm

but if you can’t take my self inflicting habits and deliver me from tormenting myself, feel free to be my knight in shining armour… I just hope you don’t mind about my tendency to want to have more “me” moments..

Life and Travel Quote 6. If you love someone, set them free, if you dislike someone, set them free. Basically set everyone free and get a dog or a cat. People are annoying.

if you love someone, set them free

I still keep a low profile, otherwise super needy friends and family who are more fatter, healthier and sometimes wealthier than you will keep asking for money : )))))…. unfortunately, there are lots of them : )))))

As Jack Ma says, help the needy, and instead of becoming self sufficient, they will find ways to be more needy. Don’t worry I’m not yet that cynical coz I still believe there are good people out there.

I’m still keeping faith in humanity. Despite the ugliness in life, there is a side of it that is still beautiful.. the world is too interesting, we should all aim to roam it before we leave the earth…

Life and Travel Quote 7.
Hurt people hurt people.
That’s how pain pattern gets passed on, generation after generation.
Break the chain today.
Meet anger with sympathy
Contempt with compassion.
Cruetly with kindness.
Love is the weapon of the future.

meet anger with sympathy, contempt with compassion, cruelty with kindness. love is the weapon of the future.