Tita Susan

Tita Susan to me, mama or mommy to her husband and children, 'Ne San to her siblings and parents. She went to heaven early this morning, a little past 1am.

That's her beside me (I'm the one in the black jacket). It was only when I zoomed in on the photo that I noticed that her arm was hooked onto mine. This was taken in December last year at a family gathering. I will miss her. I'll miss her hearty laugh, her frankness, her humor, her grace and her strength.

She fought cancer till the end. Even when she couldn't open her eyes anymore and she was breathing through a respirator, you could tell she was fighting. She was stronger than all of us.

We love you, Tita Susan. We'll miss you. Till we meet again in heaven.


Huwag Mo Nang Itanong (lines from the song by the Eraserheads)

"Hika ang inabot ko nang piliting sumabay sa yo... hanggang kanto ng isipan mong parang sweepstakes... ang hirap manalo."

"Field trip sa may pagawaan ng lapis... ay katulad din ng buhay natin -- isang mahabang pila, mabagal at walang katuturan."

This is one of their songs that I really like. I love the lyrics. Parang ang galing ng pagkasulat. I love the phrase "hanggang kanto ng isipan mo". Wow. Blows my mind.

Just sharing. Here's the song. Listen to the lyrics. Enjoy!


Sound Trip #9

When I'm driving and I'm sad about something or angry at traffic, I listen to 98.7 DZFE. Classical music and the talk programs calm me down.

This morning, driving to PGH to visit my very ill aunt, I tuned in to DZFE and caught part of the Bravo, Filipino! radio program.

They were featuring the Kabayao Family Quintet and their rendition of Sampaguita and another traditional Filipino song (I can't remember the title, sorry) and in my small space in the crawling Quiapo traffic, I felt proud and happy to be Filipino. What beautiful songs we have! Hearing those two pieces made me think of Amorsolo landscapes, old black & white movies and a genteel time when the air was cleaner, and people could actually smell the sampaguita flowers and write music about them.

I couldn't find the Kabayao version of the piece but here's the version of the SamaSama project:

Here's Bayan Ko by the Kabayao Family Quintet:

While you're at it, please read about the Kabayao Family and their music mission here. I know it's way past Independence Day. Still, it's never too late to celebrate it.

Good morning!


Rainy Thursday

Woke up 10 minutes before 6am. Had to meet Mang N, the patternmaker at Jollibee at 7am. Dragged C, tempting him with the yummy chicken tocino breakfast.

It was raining, but not the strong rains we were expecting.

Saw this along the way:

Someone's birthday? No birthday should be dampened by a typhoon. And these pretty balloons in shades of blue will certainly bring cheer to anyone.

In Jollibee waiting for our orders and for Mang N, I saw this grandpa reading the paper.

Wouldn't it be nice to have a regular breakfast hangout too? A place where you can go eat something warm and yummy and read the paper in peace.

After the meeting, C brought me home and I tried to get some more sleep. I was fully awake (from the strong Jollibee coffee, I'm guessing) so I decided to get some work done. I have some work leads and I'm hoping they'll pan out well.

After lunch I decided to head to the mall to buy tickets for Transformers and bring magazines to scan for design ideas.

Went to my usual quiet place, Cafe Breton. Had my favorite Butter and Sugar crepe and a cappuccino. All under P200. With no pressure to leave, even if you stay for four hours. Haha.

At the table beside me, there was a family composed of a mom and four siblings in their 40s to 50s. I usually try not to eavesdrop but in this case I couldn't help myself. It was just 3pm and they were looking for wine. One of the sisters wanted beer because "I can't get drunk on wine."

Breton didn't have beer. Only white and red wine by the glass. "Only by the glass?" one of the brothers asked. Finally the perplexed but alert waiter produced a bottle of white. The siblings examined the bottle for where the wine originated and how many proof it was (not sure about that term).

"Okay, we'll get this. Give us four glasses. Ay, five pala because mommy wants some too!"

I sneaked a peek at the family several times. I too, like the waiter, was perplexed. I found them cool actually. The family that drinks and gets drunk together... Just kidding. I just admire their bluntness (we just want to get drunk, period).

I got lost in my magazines and didn't find out if they finished the entire bottle. But by the way they were talking, they were still far from even just getting tipsy. Ah well.

I had to leave them because some more family members (nieces who came from the Zara sale -- yes I peeked at their shopping bags) arrived and they needed some more space.

Well, that's it. The rest of the day I spent checking the Zara sale (didn't like anything) and not really in a shopping mood. I'd rather have something made. Had dinner with C and watched Transformers. Quite nice.

Thos are just some ordinary things that I saw/experienced today. Good morning!


Tweet! Tweet!

I gave in. I'm now on Twitter: http://twitter.com/sillycoffeegirl

I made an account a few months ago and right after I did, I deleted it. They had a prompt that said "aww... was it something we said?". Cute huh? But I just felt I couldn't handle another time waster. There's Facebook already and I have to really be tough on myself so that I don't spend the better part of the day checking out what's happening there.

What made me decide to give Twitter another try? Driving. And road rage. Lately my temper has been short on the CRAZY drivers out there. Buses, tricycles, mga taong singit ng singit, etc. I realized that when I post a status/complaint on Facebook, it makes the frustrating driving experience more bearable and even funny.

So if I tweet, instead of saving up for a Mad Max-style vehicle that could plow through slow moving pedestrians and bully buses, I'd feel a whole lot better and the streets will be a safer place. :) Hee hee. Tweet tweet.

Men In White... Shoes

If you're a guy wearing white shoes, I will judge you.

If you're a guy wearing white shoes (not the athletic kind) and your hair's mussed up in a fashion-y, Korean novela way, I will most certainly judge you.

I'm having fries in McDonald's and I see this guy in line wearing a black sports shirt, dark jeans, a big wristwatch and white, pointy "leather" shoes.

He kinda looks like Piolo Pascual and I think he knows it. I'm sure a lot of his friends have told him he's a Piolo look-alike. And I'm quite sure he's mighty pleased about it. I'm also quite sure that the whole get-up he's in now is to further emphasize that he is a Piolo look-alike. Kinda saying: hey, look at me, ain't I the handsomest second level Piolo you can set your eyes on?

I know I'm being mean. At least the guy tried. I think it's better that you have some sort of fashion sense than none at all.

But... if you're wearing white, pointy "leather" shoes, be prepared to be looked at... and judged. By me at least. Hahaha.


Fashion School

Tomorrow's the last day of the short fashion course I'm taking.

I think I'm the second oldest person in the class. Haha. But who cares, right? Learning should never stop.

It was a good class. The teacher was very patient with us and I really learned to draw. A tough feat because my drawing skills used to be limited to stick drawings. Now I can actually sketch decently and can even use watercolor! :)

Here are some snippets from the class:

Teacher John left us for a few minutes and this is what happened. Someone decided to play pictionary. It was crazy!

This is my workspace. Sometimes the banana is replaced by an apple. When I'm bad, it's replaced by a big bag of chips, Sugus chews and coffee.

Learning to watercolor. Tissue to dab paintbrushes on, to remove excess color.

We got to watch some fashion shows.

Loved the pants on this one. Not sure if you can see it clearly. They walked too fast or I was too slow.

Got to enjoy these:

And these! Hahaha!

And got to applaud a designer and celebrate his creativity and toil.

I now know more about seams, silhouettes, sleeves and sex (oh how fashion people love talking about sex!).

I can draw a decent figure and can actually understand and relate to fabric construction terms the patternmaker or sewer spews out in our meetings. Hahaha. Hindi niyo na ako maloloko! Just kidding!

I can now regale friends with my extensive gay vocabulary. Laos na ang chenes niyo, mga chenelyn!

Pat on the back for this old fogie who endured sitting in a classroom the whole day, once a week, for two months. I'll miss the funny stories, the fashion chismis, the OUTFITS of my classmates (I'll try to take pictures tomorrow), the trips to 7-Eleven and just being around people who, like me, celebrate fashion everyday.


The Sneaky Sincere Smile

This entry is really about chocolates and smiles that sneak up on you. That's a note to myself, in case I end up rambling on about things that are not what I'm supposed to write about.

I was in Mega Mall one rainy day last week. I was late for class and had to buy something at Toy Kingdom. I needed coffee to take with me to class. It's a 9am to 6pm thing in one classroom and believe me, at my age, I cannot keep my sanity sitting down the whole day in one room. I make regular trips to the 7-Eleven in the building, just to change the scenery a bit and get a much-needed caffeine boost.

So anyway... in Mega Mall that day, I decided to try Blenz, a new coffee chain from Canada. Let's forget about the coffee. It was rather uneventful. Walking back to the carpark with my uneventful takeout coffee, a booth selling chocolates caught my eye. As most chocolate-selling booths are wont to do.

It was a four-sided booth in the walkway, with three sides of display cases filled with all sorts of chocolates. I must remember to post pics next time. So sorry but you'll have to imagine with me for now.

What caught my eye was a foil pack of Ghirardelli chocolates. I'm a Ghirardelli fan and I used to always bake these brownies from a Ghirardelli mix and I'd pretend I had made them from scratch. Hehe.

So anyway... I was on the first side of the booth display and was checking out the Ghirardelli foil pouches and the Whitman samplers. They also had Andes Mint and Turtles (hay naman... I am melting even as I write this).

I was asking the shop girl about the prices as I proceeded to check the other side of the booth display. This was when the "sincere smile" sneaked up on me. On that glass display was an array of handmade chocolates from Cacao and Chef Laudico.

I couldn't suppress a wide smile and a giggle. I'm sure you know what that feels like. I smile and laugh a lot but I'm aware of THAT smile that just happens spontaneously, without much thinking on my part. It's the kind of smile that comes from the most instinctual part of us. It just comes out involuntarily. It just surprises you that you are grinning madly from ear to ear. And it feels so damn great when that happens. Suddenly all your troubles melt away and the world is well.

Handmade chocolate did it for me. What with names like buco, dalandan (or calamansi... I have to check), lambanog, etc. I could imagine the taste of each one. I was in heaven. I walked away floating and waving in slo-mo to the shop girl.

I didn't get anything from the store that day. I just made a mental note to make a date of it with myself or C if he's good. I want to go back to that Cacao booth when I'm not in a hurry and I have time to choose what I want to try. Chocolate tasting, instead of wine tasting.

I promise to tell you how it goes.



I've been away from blogging for a long time. Nothing much going on I guess. Nothing so interesting to write about. But I miss writing and I miss interacting with (the very few) people who read my blog.

I hope to write more regularly soon. Hope you guys are doing great. Talk to you soon.