Recap: 2016

This year has been a year of growing up – not so much physically, though. I’m only 21 which really is not old, considering the fact that a lot of people are already in their 50’s or 80’s, but I feel as though I’ve aged a lot over the course of 12 months. I guess time is just an illusion after all. Because no matter how many days we count or birthdays we have, growing up and being mature cannot be quantified. You may be 30 but you still act like a kid or 15 but already wiser and thinks of the future ahead.

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Anyways, here’s a look at my year. All of the music, books and films I consumed in the past year. All of the places and people that make up the great experiences I’ve had. All of the learnings and realizations (and “stuff” hahahaha Kylie Jenner).

Listened to:

  • Moose Blood’s dicography especially their 2016 release “Blush”
  • Mat Kerekes – Luna and the Wild, Blue Everything
  • Seahaven – Reverie Lagoon: Music is for Escapism
  • Pinegrove – Cardinal
  • Modern Baseball – Holy Ghost
  • State Champs – Around the World and Back
  • Sing Street’s official movie soundtrack
  • Begin Again official movie soundtrack
  • Submarine official movie soundtrack

Special mentions: (albums that I come back to when things get tough)

  • Real Friends – Put Yourself Back Together
  • The Wonder Years – The Greatest Generation

I’ve also come to like the pre-made playlists on Spotify so here are links to those that I come back to listen throughout the year:

Aside from my alternative scene choices, I’ve learned to like pop music. Some standouts are Hailee Steinfield’s Starving and Rock Bottom, Mike Posner’s I Took a Pill in Ibiza (the stripped-down version), and Little Mix’s singles. My K-Pop self has been on the down low this year so I only really listened to mid-2000’s group’s releases or come back to early SNSD songs.

I also have this Spotify playlist that I constantly update so if you’re really curious about what I’m currently listening to, just drop by here:

Watched

Deadpool, Captain America: Civil War, Suicide Squad, Moana, Don’t Breathe, almost every big movie released this year. I’m not a movie person, and definitely not a movie-goer but this year I’ve watched a lot of movies inside a cinema. This is totally due to the fact that we do movie team nights in our company.

I’ve also been making an effort to finish through my growing list of to-watch movies before it overwhelms me (I’ve listed a lot of movies and I think I’m not even halfway done). Some of the movies I ticked off my list are the best movies I’ve ever seen/ experienced. I liked Submarine and Moonrise Kingdom but honestly, Sing Street is just great. The light-heartedness of the movie, the soundtrack, the actors. That movie is one of the best for 2016.

(photos are not mine)

I also fell in love with the Korean drama Scarlet Heart: Ryeo. I love the story, the aesthetic and the characters in the series. Please do watch it (if you don’t do it voluntarily, I’ll bug you until you do).

Read

  • Falling into Place – Amy Zhang
  • The Trials of Apollo – Rick Riordan
  • Happy Again – Jennifer Smith
  • Spinster Trilogy – Holly Bourne
  • The Lover’s Dictionary – David Levithan
  • Anatomy of a Misfit – Andrea Portes
  • Girl Against the Universe – Paula Stokes
  • The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho
  • Thirty-eight Series – Len Webster
  • November 9 – Colleen Hoover
  • Summer Days and Summer Nights – Stephanie Perkins, et. al.
  • Crazy Rich Asians – Kevin Kwan (so funny!)

I’ve mostly read YA and self-help/ learning books. Yes, I know they are not really the “classics” or “greatest literary pieces of all time” but I enjoy most of the books I’ve read. Also, I FINALLY got a copy of Charles Bukowski’s You Get so Alone Sometimes… book for my birthday. Got it in Davao, Fully Booked Abreeza on my birthday week. Yay!

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One standout that I recommend from the young adult genre is Holly Bourne’s Spinster Trilogy: Am I Normal Yet?, How Hard Can Love Be?, and What’s a Girl Got To Do?. I don’t want to spoil you guys so I’ll move on to the other parts of this post before I start typing out specifics about the books. Read and know for yourself! 🙂

I’ve not really finished a lot of self-help books. I’m halfway done with the New One Minute Manager so that would be the first one I’ll finish reading from cover to cover.

Places with people

I can honestly say that this year is the year I went to a lot of places and be friends with new faces. I got a new set of people in my life, “work friends” and honestly, all of them are good company.

  • Osmeña Peak, Dalaguete
  • UP Diliman – tour around campus with Dara
  • SM North EDSA Skydome, Manila – Neck Deep concert in the PH with Wes
  • Sumilon Island – Holy Week trip with tita Jossan and Gegen
  • Tubigon/ Bohol – reunion with the fam on Mother’s side
  • Davao City – work roadtrip
  • Samal Island
  • La Chevrerie Resort and Spa, Batangas – EQ Ph bootcamp
  • Bantayan Island – finally visited it after being in Cebu for 5 years!
  • Shercon Resort and Ecology Park, Batangas – EQ Ph Christmas Party!

Highlights

This year, I got to experience many things but some experiences are better than others. These are the adventures I’ve had that stayed with me and made 2016 a great year.

NECK DEEP concert in the Philippines. Come on, if you know me, you’d expect this already. This is the first legit concert I’ve been to and it’s honestly one of the best things that happened in my existence. I got to see one of my favorite bands perform their songs and it was there that I realized that watching from a screen was nothing compared to seeing them live. I even got to meet the band (minus Fil) up close and give West a locally-made bracelet. Still gives me the feels, this experience.

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Getting promoted. I’ve never worked so hard in my entire “adult life” than during this time and seeing it pay off was fulfilling. It made all the body aches and mental challenges go away for a long time.

Asian History class trip. I’ve been out of the university for almost a year now. Luckily, the history class by Pep was opening slots for non-students to join in the tour so I grabbed one. Learning once again about Asian religions and their philosophies made me appreciate the diversity of our region.

Chicken Pox. The disease that I have dreaded to catch had finally come to pay his visit. I can say that I was disappointed (which really, I shouldn’t be) because I feel like I did not get the entire spectacle. I was curious since most of the stories I heard about people getting chicken pox paint a gloomy picture – constant itching, fever, loss of appetite, etc. I got close to none of those, not so much itching (only the first two or three days) and that was it. It sucked that I couldn’t eat chicken and recipes with it as an ingredient, though.

One day tour of Cebu city. I did this as a treat to one of my work friends. Stephen and I went to the Taoist temple in Lahug, Museo Sugbu and Magellan’s Cross before going to work the p.m. shift. It was a hot day and we were both sweaty from all the jeepney rides and walking but for me, the experience was one that I have always wanted to do so I was happy to tick that off my bucket list.

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Sugbu Mercado and introvert times. The times I go to the weekly Sugbu Mercado is always with friends and I do love their company. Food, music and friends always make for a good time. On the other hand, my introvert self is always in need of some alone time to recover energy and those times spent alone in coffee shops or Jelly Citea are so worth it.

EQ Ph ganaps: Bootcamp and Year-end Party. Work events are always great. The company always manages to incorporate business with fun. I get to learn new things and reinforce old learnings to be better. Also, just seeing and interacting with new and old work friends is a blast.

 

 

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Honestly, I’m still an in-betweener. I believe that I have more growing up to do and XP points to earn before I become a full-fledged adult; but I also believe that those days of throwing emotional tantrums out of nowhere, answering my parents in a “pilosopo” way, etc. are almost behind me.

Adulting is hard. You need to learn life skills AND apply them. Don’t be afraid to do it and always expect to make mistakes. I always believe that it’s better to make mistakes early on in the journey so that when you encounter them again, you already know what to do.

 

What’s up?

So it’s been a year and four months out of college, how’s the experience going? Here’s a rundown of the things or events that happened.

  • Volunteer work for APEC

In my 2015 recap post, I talked briefly about my experience being part of the Operations committee for the APEC Summit in Cebu. Me and my friend, Kaye were fresh out of university and we kind of didn’t want to get into the “real world” yet. When we found out that the local/ provincial government was looking for volunteers for the meetings to be held in Cebu, we jumped at the opportunity. We got in but in different committees, I was in logistics and Kaye was in registration. We got to stay at the most expensive hotels in Cebu, eat free food and most of the work we do are easy. The experience, as a whole, was a fun one.

  • Unemployment

After APEC, I was still not ready to find a job so I moved back home… to my mom’s basement (no hahahaha we don’t have a basement). I was unemployed for two months. My excuse was that I was finding direction and doing all the things I wasn’t able to do in college. And I did do all the things I was putting aside during college; I read a lot of fiction, learned how to do handlettering and started this blog.

  • Job

Tired of being unemployed, I took to the Internet to find a job. I was not even thinking about getting the “perfect” job for me, I was ready to take on anything. So, I stumbled into a Facebook group where jobs in the development sector are posted, scanned the posts, sent a ton of emails and got only a handful of replies. In the end, I ended up with a job as a fundraiser. I didn’t even know that this was a legit job where you get paid but I said yes when they told me I got hired.

My first week, like most first weeks of getting into something totally new, was full of adjustments and doubts. Can I really do this? Why did I even study Political Science if I’m not going to make a living out of it? I wanted out. But after getting past that first week, I was willing to give it three months. Three months turned into nine, now I’m a senior with a team consisting of two other fundraisers.

  • Personal

Nothing much has happened in my personal life or idk, maybe there’s been some changes. I got new friends from work that are all pretty much good people. Like most people in their 20s, I struggle with responsibilities like keeping up with my finances, getting insurance, etc. I am also doing my best to maintain my work/ life balance, although I sometimes sacrifice time with others for work (but I’m working on not doing that). Introvert time is also very important so on some off days, I just hangout by myself and do what I always do which is drink milktea/ coffee and read books or try to doodle.

Oh, I got chicken pox a week before this post. I was underwhelmed because I feel like I didn’t get the full chicken pox experience. I only had a few spots, no itching or fever. But to be honest, I am thankful that I got by easy.

What lies ahead?

I don’t have any idea what lies in the future. I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do and set my priorities. Hey, I’m still young so I have a ton of time to figure shit out (jk, I need to find direction before the year ends, I think).

 

MNL 1/27 – 1/30 2016

I believe everyone has their own city, one that they are super into and fits their lifestyle needs. What I realized when I went to Manila is that I know for sure that it’s not the city for me.

Manila is crowded. The view from the plane’s window showed an endless landscape of buildings and urban decay. Although it is the capital of the country, I felt like it lacked urban planning and proper use of space. There are also a lot of people from various parts of the country who decided to try their luck in the big city. This meant that the population is sky-high. Pollution and poverty can be seen everywhere. Rule of law seems to be nonexistent and the thought that I could be mugged or kidnapped anytime was never removed from my mind.

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Aerial view

On a good note, I was very happy  because I was able to visit UP Diliman. To me, it seemed like our version of a Central Park in Manhattan. It was a pocket of green in an area full of concrete, glass and/ or metal. Going inside the campus felt like going to my hometown province, it gave me that sense of serenity and peace that I only feel when I’m at home. Well, as an alumna, maybe I am (in an alien-finding-the-mothership kind of way). One good thing that this trip brought was me seeing Dara again. It has been a long time since I saw the 1/5 of Duma and I miss our resident miming (cat) friend.

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Dara, the miming

 

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Mothership statue of the Oblation

Manila has developed a bad reputation as a city — worst traffic, high crime rate, etc. As the plane descended altitude, I saw the city and thought, “well, this was exactly what I had in mind”. I was picked up at the airport by my uncle and as soon as we joined the main road going to their house, we felt the infamous traffic. Cruising the NCR roads, I saw the good, the bad and the ugly.

If you made it in Manila, I salute you!

 

The Sunday Currently Vol. 3

Reading

Posts on the wall of a Venice Anderson on Facebook.

Writing

Nothing, really. Just filling out the sections of this week’s Sunday Currently. No special write-ups yet. The muse is elusive.

Listening

Tonight’s tunes are from the “One Directions Hits” playlist on Spotify by Filtr Portugal. The song playing right now is Story of My Life from the Midnight Memories album.

http://open.spotify.com/user/filtr.pt/playlist/0RqF5xtzNWd1U3PZ3gjOED

Thinking

Is Php 2,000.00 is enough money for my four-day trip to Manila? Will I not be hungry? Short of cash? Also, how do I navigate the unfamiliar streets of Manila? Ugh, Manila.

Smelling

Nothing. I’m not near anything that could give off odor so I’m not smelling anything.

Wishing

I wish, I wish with all my heart to have a job that fits me and that I want to be doing. Also, to have an artist grade watercolor and fine brushes for lettering.

Hoping

I’m hoping that this trip to Manila to see Neck Deep will turn out to be a great one. It will be memorable for sure, I just hope that the memory will be one of those things that I’ll remember for life for all its good parts.

Wearing

An old sleeveless blouse that used to be something I love wearing when going out. It was transferred from the “going out outfits” pile to the “bed wear” pile long ago since it shows too much cleavage. Hahahahaha problems.

Loving

Carpool Karaoke videos on The Late, Late Show with James Corden’s Youtube channel. The amount of time I spend watching and re-watching those videos is ridiculous. I’m checking them out every day. (call me crazy)

Wanting

(Still wanting) A job?

Needing

Money and some time alone to do things that calm my soul

Feeling

Exhausted from the traffic because it’s the Sinulog weekend. But not exhausted enough because I’m still staying up to type this.

Clicking

Some Venice Anderson’s Facebook  profile because apparently it’s funny and trending now. Also, because my best friend told me so and I know that if I don’t check it out I will never hear the end of it.

Issues: The desire to be white

It saddens me to think that society (or at least, the Philippine society) is so obsessed with having that white skin. Pills, tablets, whitening soap, scrubs and whatever shit people do or use to have white skin are all over the Internet and supermarkets. What are you trying to prove or achieve? That being white is better than being of color?

Even worse, teenagers are pressured to get that white glowing skin because their celebrity idols said so in some TV advertisement. What happened to teaching kids to be confident in their own skin?

An old nursery song I learned in Sunday school may remind adults and kids that skin color is not that important.

Jesus loves the little children,
All the children of the world.
Brown and yellow,
Black and white,
They are precious in his sight.

Jesus loves the little children of the world.