• Guide on Philippine Airports on Budget Public Transport

    Guide on Philippine Airports on Budget Public Transport

      The growth of Philippine aviation was brought by the concept of low-cost or budget carriers. Ever since its advent sometime in the last decade (2000s), there was a spike of passengers taking the skies as a means to travel in this archipelago nation. No longer the air is ruled by ...

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  • Mindanao Saga: Return to the Land of Promise

    Mindanao Saga: Return to the Land of Promise

    Mindanao—the second largest island in, down south of the republic…very far yet so close to my heart. For most of the urbanites, it is a place that most should avoid because of adjectives associated with it: war-torn, poverty-stricken and home of the “terrorists.” Indeed, the notion of the island has ...

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  • The Heart of Urban Marawi City

    The Heart of Urban Marawi City

    “Even most MSU students don’t dare to go to ‘town,’” a Maranao friend of mine once said. Marawi City has been hampered with so much negative publicity in the Philippine mainstream that for the people of the lowlands, the only thing that makes them go there would be enrolling or visiting ...

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  • Comida Zamboangueña

    Comida Zamboangueña

    We already know about Pampanga’s exquisite yet exotic cuisine, the Ilonggo’s love affair with seafood and broth-based food, and Bicolanos’ penchant for anything chili and coconut milk or gata. However, there is one city in the Philippines that may have been overlooked (or perhaps evaded out of “fear of Mindanao”) ...

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  • An Ode to Bonifacio: Monumento of Caloocan City

    Monumento, one of the few places in Metro Manila that earned its name as a hub and a bustling commercial center. Lagi nating dinadaanan ang Monumento ni Gat Andres Bonifacio pero di natin napapansin na isa ito sa mga pinakadakilang monumento sa ating republika. For most of us, Monumento in ...

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When Manila Commuting Turned Upside Down

It’s currently my first week at my new job. After a year, I’m back at graveyard shift. Yup, I’m back where Edward Cullen and his family take on a rampage to the innocent bystanders. Oops! Not for the green minded! My daytime IS night time. 11 PM to 8 AM!

Although the feeling of nausea and sleepiness is part of this schedule, I am however, blessed by this fact: Going to work is as easy as 45 minutes or even less! Yes, people of the republic-no longer I am subject to the tenacious and seemingly endless cycle of Buhos system of Cavite! No standing at the bus, kissing the doors, being harassed by the bus conductor or by manyaks, and most of all-goodbye sardinas sa bus!
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Cavite-bound Buses Are Back at Lawton

Manila City Hall and Lawton Area
Great news for Cavite residents who study or work in the City of Manila, Lawton-Cavite-bound buses are back! Yes, you heard it right!

The City Government of Manila has now allowed the entry of provincial buses coming from Cavite (Dasmariñas line, Tagaytay line, Mendez-Nuñez line, Ternate/Naic line) at Taft Avenue, all the way to Lawton (Park and Ride) from 5 in the afternoon to 6 in the morning, the next day. Although limited, the Cavite-bound buses are allowed only until Quirino LRT Station before going back to Cavite from 6AM to 5PM, everyday.

No need to wait in chaotic Buendia-Pasay!

This is still subject to changes. Better ask the bus conductors or the Manila traffic officers for more information.

08-23-2010: Bloodshed at Quirino Grandstand Manila

Quirino Grandstand Flags. The location of the hostage drama

Indeed, Quirino Grandstand in Luneta, central Manila, capital of the Philippines, is one historical place. It was here where several presidents took their oaths, celebrate the independence of the country from the United States, concerts and a whole lot more. It is a landmark dedicated to the former President Elpidio Quirino. The Grandstand that I guess all Filipinos know and synonymous to Luneta and Rizal Park-just several meters away from the place. On August 01, 2010, the 15th President of the Republic of the Philippines, Benigno Aquino III, took oath here. On August 23, 2010-a massacre unfolds as a former policeman took hostage of Hong Kong nationals in a stand-off that left the hostage and several hostages dead, and a mark of trauma in the image of the Philippines in the international community. Luneta has seen another blood spilt over her domain.

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Just Dropping by at the Philippine Congress

Batasang Pambansa - The Philippine Congress Main Hall

It was one Monday rainy afternoon. I was in a mission: To drop by at a Congressman’s office for an official endorsement. I have been to Malacañang, the Senate and the Supreme Court, but I haven’t been to The House of Representatives or locally known as Batasang Pambansa-that’s the legislative center of the Philippine Republic.

Yup. The area I guess most of us know as the center stage of the State of the Nation Addresses (SONA) of Philippine presidents, and as some critics would say, “The Crocodile Pit.” The Batasang Pambansa is where the Philippine assembly of legislative representatives from all over the archipelago, converge and make laws for the republic. Given the bicameral nature of our government, The House of the Representatives is the “lower house” while the Senate (which is in Pasay City) is the “upper house.” However, the said lower house is composed of influential people coming from the local governments.

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The Fiasco at Baclaran: Commuter’s Misery with MMDA Dispatch

Roxas Boulevard near Baclaran

PARANAQUE CITY, PHILIPPINES — Today is Baclaran Day, or the day when the devotees of Our Lady of Perpetual Help converge at Baclaran Church in Parañaque City, one of Metro Manila’s busiest and most congested districts. As expected, early morning will be the start of the traffic jam that normally occurs every Wednesdays. But this Wednesday, August 4, was no longer ordinary for me. MMDA failed big time! It failed the commuters way big time!

At around 6:10 AM, our bus from Cavite, bound for EDSA, entered Baclaran’s bus stop for the usual dispatch. They have a new chairman, a former mayor of Tagaytay City. So like always whenever there’s a new king to lead his men, they implement the traffic rules strictly. So those who disobeyed are instantly reprimanded or apprehended. Just to play it safe, the driver of the bus entered the dispatch bus stop area at Baclaran, rather than risking to pay P1,000 fine…from that time on…it was ‘haynakupo!’ for most of the passengers. It’s Baclaran Day, obviously you’re entering the eye of the storm! Read more

This Time, Please Understand NAIA

I was a bit irked earlier this morning when a media person interviewed a NAIA (Ninoy Aquino International Airport) official regarding the flight diversion that happened yesterday, after strong thunderstorms lashed Manila that led to zero visibility around the airport. Of course, I know the fact that ordinary people doesn’t understand the technicalities of airport operations…and so do I. I may not be an official or an expert in aircraft navigation nor a pilot myself, but somehow, I understand the consequences that NAIA faced yesterday. What irked me though was a seemingly sarcastic tone of “mauulit nanaman yan muli?” (“Will it ever repeat again?”). Of course it will! That is about mother nature and life and death! Its the standard operating procedure whenever Mother Nature has gone nuts! Safety over convenience!

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The 112th Philippine Independence Day Celebrations at Luneta: A Reflection

A century and 12 years later, the Republic of the Philippines celebrated its freedom from the Spanish Empire with a float, performance and parade gala at the Quirino Grandstand in Luneta, Manila. Since this is the last year of the outgoing president Gloria Arroyo, the government allotted PhP10 million for the whole programme. The National Historical Commission of the Philippines (Yes, another name change. It was National Historical Institute) was the main organizer of the programme “Kalayaan 2010″ (Freedom 2010). I wasn’t able to see the traditional flag raising at Aguinaldo’s House at Kawit (its too early! Good luck at baka trapik sa Binakayan galing dito sa Imus!) so I went to Luneta that afternoon for the civic and military parade.

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