Last Leg: Luzon to Visayas in two weeks (December 2017, Part 5)

So, we are now in the final segment of our Luzon to Visayas adventure trip — and what a ride it has been! Yes, just one more sea travel and two land trips then finally, we’re back to Cebu City; but not after a few memorable days in Bacolod City, of course.

Anyway, while traveling by plane is cool — as you get to your destination faster and thus have more free time when you arrive — traveling by land and sea are simply much better. After all, if it’s adventure you really seek, then long land and (at times rough?) sea travels would get really your juices flowing right off the bat — yep, whether locally or internationally!

Okay, okay, adventure is out there in your intended destination — whatever part of the world it may be — but really, aren’t they just mostly beaches or slices of nature? See?? Then why not make the Philippines part of that experience? Yeah, especially if you’re a local, otherwise, a foreigner who is already in the country or planning a vacation somewhere on earth. See for one, the Philippines’ got thousands of islands to hop around and consequently beautiful sceneries and beaches to relax and enjoy! So.

Last Leg: Bacolod to San Carlos to Toledo.. then eventually Cebu City

Bacolod City to San Carlos City. Bus. 2h 20m. P153. Now while San Carlos is still part of Negros Occidental, understand that it is almost 80 kilometers away from Bacolod, so you got to get to South Ceres Bus Terminal first which is in Luzuriaga Street for that bus ride.

In this trip, you would be passing by the towns of Murcia and Don Salvador Benedicto before reaching San Carlos. There are actually some nice sceneries and tourist spots (like the Negros Chocolate Hills, mountain resorts and some man-made forest of sorts) along the way that if you are traveling by car and got some spare time, you could actually stop first and make some memories. I was in a bus, so the most I could do was take pictures on the go. Not bad.

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Rich sugarcane fields of Murcia, Negros Occidental

San Carlos City to Toledo City. Fastcat. 1h 10m. P150 + P20 terminal fee. It was about 4:10PM when the bus arrived at the San Carlos bus terminal. And I found out that there were still two trips scheduled for Toledo City, 5PM (Fastcat) and 6PM (Lite Ferries) — and so, I started asking around about the place like accommodation, malls, places of interest and stuff. You know, maybe I could spend even a night or two first before boarding the ship to Cebu. Haha.

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Gaisano San Carlos City

Then again, I’ve just been away too long and it’s already a new year so okay, better next time since I am also planning to climb Mount Canlaon (2,435 meters in Negros Occidental) anyway. Yeah, hopefully sometime this year I’d be at its peak. Hopefully.

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Port of Toledo City, Cebu

Toledo City to Cebu City. Van. 2h. P100. Here I took the 5PM trip to Toledo and arrived after an hour. Yeah, it’s nighttime once again. And they say there are only two Ceres buses that ply Toledo that by the time I arrived, only vans remain for trips to Cebu City. And so, after taking some pictures, I then joined some of the ship’s passengers in the tricycle (P10 per head) to the van’s terminal.

20 minutes later, our van left Toledo for Cebu City.

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Bacolod City: Luzon to Visayas in two weeks (December 2017, Part 4)

After more than a couple of days in Iloilo, I could not really say anything negative except for how I wish I could stay there a little longer? Haha. Indeed, I liked the place. Urbanized yet still maintains that cozy atmosphere.

Still, if I would extend my stay, I’d just end up getting behind my schedules so it was simply time for me to pack up and head for Bacolod City, yes, another of those key cities in the country.

Iloilo Fastcraft & Roro Terminal

Iloilo City to Bacolod City. Fastcraft. 2h 20m. P200 + P30 terminal fee. With maximizing time in mind, I took the 10:30AM trip to the City of Bacolod and after a little over two hours, our ferry safely arrived at the port of Bacolod, Negros Occidental. Hmm. Looking at the map, it’s actually like just a stone’s throw away from Iloilo City, however, since we were coming from the river of Iloilo plus we need to navigate around Guimaras Island province, such explains why these fast ferries take over two hours of travel. Right.

Iloilo City to Bacolod City route

Anyway, unlike my earlier trips, I’m fresher here having had a few days of rest and leisure in Iloilo — that in fact, right after I arrived in Bacolod, I just dropped off my luggages in my hotel room and left for “The Ruins” right away. Yeah, The Ruins! And that landmark is even like outside of Bacolod City already!

Of course, I needed to eat lunch first. And so after having Bacolod’s specialty in Chicken Inasal, I was ready and off to The Ruins!

Leaving The Ruins though is more of a challenge since it’s isolated and there are not many tricycles that ply the road out there, so do not be surprised if you are asked for a P50 fare going back to Bata terminal — yeah, even with somebody else on board. I was.

Anyway, we’ll be having a special blog about The Ruins — in pictures!

TRIVIA. Did you know that it was in this tourist spot that I had the most “selfies”? And would you believe that I literally had a thousand photographs in all of this 2-week travel escapade?? Unbelievable, that if I do not be selective and just post each one of these pictures daily, that’s good for like a 3-year spread in social media! Wow!

Coming up, the last leg of our holiday travel spree!

Iloilo City: Luzon to Visayas in two weeks (December 2017, Part 3)

After finally deciding on not pushing through with a Boracay adventure, unlike my other stops, I then immediately took the bus to Iloilo City — yeah, before I change my mind and head to Boracay instead. Ow. After all, it’s really tempting..

Especially when you think of spending the night first in Caticlan! Remember, Boracay is just 15 minutes away. And since I only slept for an hour in the ship to Caticlan, I thought I might get dizzy (you know how the bus could smell when its freshener and aircon are mixed with different odors) if I would just go straight to Iloilo.

225 kilometer route from Caticlan to Iloilo City (estimated time by car travel)

Caticlan to Iloilo City. Bus. 6h. P387. One might say just sleep in the bus since it’s a looong trip to Iloilo, then again, I couldn’t get to really close my eyes that long — since everything around me was new! Oh yeah, I did sleep in my trip from Manila to Batangas but I already know Manila and Batangas was nowhere in sight yet. So.

Halfway to Iloilo City, a nice breakfast stopover

Nonetheless, the trip had a stopover for breakfast which was good considering not just the long trip but for those passengers who wish to refurbish their energy levels. And yes, the bus had free WiFi on board but what’s the use when my phone was almost empty at 10 percent — so better preserve its power for some shots along the way. Still, what’s nice about this bus (which was actually a Ceres Liner) was that it had a toilet on board, certainly convenient so as not to interrupt long trips. It’s located at the middle part of the bus and aligned with the luggage compartment. So just imagine the elevation of the passenger seats and the height of the bus itself!

After six hours of land travel from Caticlan to Iloilo, I immediately sought to check-in to my hotel to unload my luggages then leave for lunch — yes, before returning and taking a brief rest as my phone’s also dead; and so, I could not really take photos of anything yet.

While there were many places I checked out in Iloilo City, guess one of the highlights of my stay was the Iloilo Riverside Boardwalk in Mandurriao. Unfortunately, I visited this wonderful tourist spot right after my lunch at SM City Iloilo the following day. So, why “unfortunately”? Because I was not on the mark for the Iloilo Esplanade River Ride. Notice the schedules in the video?

Anyway, we would be having pictures of my Iloilo trip and the rest of my adventures in the coming blogs once the whole trip back to Cebu has been completed, so stay tuned.

Next up, Part Four of our continuing travels!

Consumer Info: HIV and Sexuality

When one hears of the term HIV, what does normally come to mind? AIDS? Well yes, obviously, since it is the precursor of the dreaded disease. And now, with the continued rise of such cases in the Philippines as in 1,013 new cases as of June 2017 — where 969 of which comes from sexual contact – maybe it is time to especially check on society’s sexual behavior.

But first, a few facts about HIV.

  • HIV was believed to have originated from SIV-infected monkeys in Congo back in the 1920s. It was transferred to humans through ‘hunting’, like, as a result of monkeys being eaten or their blood getting into cuts or wounds of people hunting them.
  • Symptoms which normally appear between 1-2 months include: fever, fatigue, head ache, swollen lymph nodes, achy muscles, joint pains, skin rash, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, sore throat, dry cough, and night sweats. Yes, while these symptoms may sound ordinary, notice that they do appear in many other illnesses as well — since these are signs that one’s immune system is being attacked. Thus, if you are unusually experiencing any such sign, make sure to have yourself checked by a physician.
  • At risk groups include partners of people with AIDS, or those who inject drugs, or hemophiliacs (one with serious disease that causes a person who has been cut or injured to keep bleeding for a very long time) as well as homosexuals.
How HIV/AIDS is spread

Now, sexual behavior. Okay, more than a means to procreate — sex as we may put it is a biological need, thus, even the Bible suggests that one gets married so as not to commit sins of the flesh such as fornication and orgies. However, man would only listen to his urges and those who shares his views. Yet they even pride themselves of having a personal relationship with God?? Worse, ’cause of people’s desire to be appreciated, “in”, or trendy in their styles — they even accuse others of perversion when they are the ones who actually instigate their so-called perversion. Talk of sticking more mud.

Example. If a girl wears kind of revealing clothes (plunging necklines, high slits, short shorts, et cetera) or even doing something that could show more skin than usual, men would generally look at her. Is that being a pervert? No. Why? It’s human nature. Men would always be men. And it is by no means shielding the folly of man. Because you should not have worn such clothing in the first place if you do not want to be stared at. Hey, even the Bible suggests to dress modestly, 1 Timothy 2:9. If you do not follow the Word, you sin. Simple.

Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are. Better be with a few who are righteous.

So see, society’s adamance and misguided beliefs has simply caused even more sexual harassment and rape cases these days.

Still, more than other influences like drugs and alcohol – being with ungodly people (or those who do not really try to follow the Word) only encourages the weaker souls to fall for just about every kind of sin there is, 2 Corinthians 6:14 – my, what with technology being a vehicle of lust and materialism?! And so, powerful, scheming men then just capitalized on this worldliness.

While technology offers convenience and entertainment, it’s also a vehicle of worldliness.

In the end, don’t you think HIV was simply God’s mysterious way of bringing wrath to immorality? And don’t say you use protection or there’s a cure – ’cause God has a million ways to get to offenders.

Consumer Info: All About Brain Aneurysm

Brain Aneurysm. Heard of it? Understandably so, it must be foreign to many — yet because of the recent showbiz news that shocked many in the country, the ordinary Juan Dela Cruz became even more curious about this.

Aneurysm is the ballooning of a blood vessel particularly in the arteries resulting from the weakening of the vessel wall. Now, if you add “brain” to this then it would be self-explanatory that this is a medical case that pertains to the head. And so, let’s proceed.

Brain aneurysm can be ruptured or unruptured — so, imagine the danger it presents if such a bulge inside one’s head would just burst?! Coma. Brain damage. Even death.

CAUSES

Illnesses such as Marfan’s syndrome, some traumatic brain injuries, serious systemic infections, and autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease contribute to brain aneurysm. Moreover, the chances of rupturing increases through smoking, drug abuse, atherosclerosis and high blood pressure.

RISKS 

If any of the risks or symptoms apply, have a check up

While brain aneurysm can develop in anyone at any age — women over 40 years old are at a higher risk for developing this condition especially if she has a family history of it. Yes, not to mention those who are dealing with diabetes, obesity and copper deficiency could be at risk as well.

SYMPTOMS

Signs of a ruptured brain aneurysm includes: Severe headache, stiff neck, blurred or double vision, sensitivity to light, drooping eyelids, numbness, seizures, fainting, confusion, nausea and vomiting.

Now, while approximately 40 percent of those with ruptured brain aneurysm results in death, 50 to 80 percent actually do not rupture. Take note though that some unruptured brain aneurysm can cause pressure on the brain and lead to headaches, blurred vision, neck pain and speech changes. Thus, so long as one gets screened sooner than later, more so regularly, then something could still be done.

DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT 

Many times, surgery may be risky so listen to your doctor
  • The suspected patient should undergo a CT scan or MRI to verify the condition.
  • Treatment depends on the size, location and severity of the aneurysm.
  • Pain medications are prescribed to treat head and eye pain. Prescribed medication is also used to prevent blood vessel blockages or to relieve cranial pressure.
  • Surgery is also an option and this is to cut off blood flow to where the brain aneurysm is or to make repairs — that is, only if the aneurysm is accessible.

PREVENTION

  • Understand that an unruptured brain aneurysm is hard to detect, thus, especially if there were at least 2 in your family that has had aneurysm — it would be good if you have yourself checked every 5 years once you reach the age of 40.
  • A change in lifestyle would be necessary to minimize the risk of developing brain aneurysm, therefore, quit smoking, eat healthy, exercise regularly, use drugs the right way, have enough rest and if you drink, just drink moderately.
  • Monitor your overall health particularly your weight, cholesterol, blood glucose and blood pressure levels.
  • Manage stress levels. Don’t push too hard but take time to relax — life should be a blessing not a burden.

TIPS 

Lifestyle change is necessary for managing health

Take a low dose of aspirin daily to prevent the build up of arterial plaque that can weaken blood vessel walls — however, consult your doctor first if this kind of treatment would be right for you.

Recovery After Treatment. If the brain aneurysm was ruptured then at least a 3-week rest would be necessary before one could resume daily activities. Otherwise, if it was not ruptured, a full week of good rest would be sufficient.

Remember, to be healthy — live healthy.

TODAY: Top 10 Mall Games in Cebu City

It’s the Halloween, and what timing! Longer holidays and sure, people just enjoying their vacation. Well, while many may have gone to their hometowns, else, beaches and other interesting places. Malls still do offer some unique fun, not just movies but in games as well — yes, whether for children or adults!

But before we proceed, here’s an interesting trivia. Did you know that most of these mall games have various names depending on the mall that you’re in? This could be confusing, thus, we just decided to give them our own descriptive name instead — so, just take a careful look at the pictures for you to recognize these games.

Here goes..

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Shooting Hoops

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Kiddie Fun Ride

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Combat Video Game

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Stuffed Toy Grabber

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Car Driving Simulator

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Deep Sea Board Shooting

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Coin Treasure

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Videoke Box

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Gun Shooting Video Game

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2K Basketball Video Game

If some of your favorite mall games are ranked lower, or are not even on this list — then it means they are not found in most malls but are only seen in selected or larger malls in Cebu City. And so if they are not around, how could they be played with, right?

Anyway, there’s just so much more to add or improve in terms of mall games in this part of the world — no worry, we’ll get there.

TODAY: Top 10 Food Kiosks in Cebu City

Okay, let’s now get into kiosks — not those big, fast food chains or restaurants that we instinctively think of but the more popular, little ones that we usually see in the malls of Cebu City.

Yes, while a couple of them may have already found their way out of food carts and onto resto-type spots with a few tables and chairs — they still could not be categorized as a full-fledged food store as they still don’t have enough of such franchises instead many still thrives on kiosks that we know of.

And so, we bring you today’s Top 10 Food Kiosks in Cebu City which we categorized as follows: Current Craze, Fast Rising, and Old Favorites.

CURRENT CRAZE

  • LEYLAM. Now, who doesn’t like beef? Well most everyone does except, understandably, for those bounded by religious beliefs as well as some vegans out there. And with options for rice, noodles or wrap, Leylam has become the biggest hit in Cebu City as you could have them for either a dreamy snack or a delightful meal.
Leylam
  • POTATO CORNER. Fries. And more fries. Guess, it’s more than just those flavorings but it’s simply the love for these delectable slices of deep-fried potatoes that even with just plain salt would do.
Potato Corner
  • HOTDOG ON STICKS. Cheesedog. Bacondog. Save for a real dog, hotdogs have been a favorite practically since time immemorial — that other similar kiosks have sprouted all over town!
Hotdog On Sticks
  • PEDRO PEDRICO’S. For pizza fans, this store must be heaven. While they don’t really have as many flavors as those big players, their options for slices and solo packs gives them that edge on affordability.
Pedro Pedrico’s

FAST RISING

  • TURKS. Here’s more meat and all wrapped for you in Turks — where the only disadvantage could in fact be its classy image and therefore its price, yeah, as we are speaking of the general public.
Turks
  • SANTINO’S SUPREME SLICES. Speaking of class and just like Turks, it’s the layout of Santino’s is what makes it classier than other pizza kiosks. Then again, with mainly just four common flavors, the only advantage it has compared to those bigger pizza chains is that it could be bought per slice — while against other kiosks is of course its size.
Santino’s Supreme Slices
  • LUGAW NI BOSSING. Clearly, many just liked the idea of bringing mother’s arroz caldo out of the kitchen and onto the public through Lugaw ni Bossing as we could see in its reception. But while there may be some differences with mom’s delicious home-cooked delicacy, this is the closest that you can get.
Lugaw ni Bossing

OLD FAVORITES

  • CEBU’S ORIGINAL LECHON BELLY. The simple yet not so simple lechon has been the pride of Filipino cuisine. Yet even with its crispy skin, how could we just forget its succulent belly?
Cebu’s Original Lechon Belly
  • MASTER SIOMAI. Another of Cebu’s pride is the siomai — or the dumpling as known by many other than locals is just as tasty as it could be. And probably the only fix here could be its consistency with the sauce.
Master Siomai
  • WAFFLE TIME. Nope, it’s not really tiring to have especially if it’s cheap and still tasty as pancakes but only with a hotdog or some filling inside. Waffles are simply a good choice for those on a budget.
Waffle Time

Notice that most of these kiosks are just about in every mall in Cebu City?

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