Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Don't need no fancy dance studio

The last time I came here, Jay, Lagy, Kev and I walked past the Plaza on the way home and saw a big group of teenagers practicing a cheerleading routine. When we gave it a closer look, we noticed a small group of break dancers who were showing really incredible skills! Right then and there I was inspired and amazed at the extent of the street dance culture in our country today. 

For the past 3 days that we've been here, my brother and I have been visiting the same plaza every night, hoping to catch a glimpse of the dancers during rehearsals, and so far, they have not disappointed us! Today however, was quite monumental for us because we finally got up the courage to get down into the pit and ask them questions that we've been so curious about. 

(Lots of cool and dangerous techniques! They even told me about the difference of Powermoves and Style nowadays and how important Style is when making bboy combinations during battles! So true!)

Just like back home, there are apparently a lot of dance competitions out here too! In fact, we'll be able to catch 2 of them this weekend, one ABDC style, and one purely 3-on-3 breakdance battle style! Yay! :D They love watching videos on Youtube too, and despite the lack of any formal and hands-on training here, they learn just as well on their own! I sooo admire their passion for dancing because the fact that there are NO dance studios here doesn't stop them from learning some more! They gather at the plaza every night and stay till 4am rehearsing and battling each other for fun, no matter if the floor is so dangerously made out of cement and that any fall could seriously cause them bad injuries. 

(Seeing more of the street culture here! L-R: People chilling in the plaza at night and watching all the amazing performances, just like us! Really good skateboarders try tricks on the benches, and BMX bikers working it on the ramp!)

I was happy to share what the dance community was like in Manila, talk about the group that I'm part of and was humbled when he mentioned that they join competitions so that they could actually travel to Manila and try competing there! I realized how we can sometimes take advantage of the facilities we have back home and how amazing it is to get the chance to be trained by some of the best instructors in the country. Some people only dream about it! :O

He shared that one day, the first person to make it big will fulfill their dream of putting up the first dance studio with a high ceiling here so they could perfect their stunts! I'll be sure to include that in my prayers from now on! :D 

Ahh... inspiration always comes when you least expect it to! 

Doing a little extra for the Earth!

How'd you spend Earth Day 2009? 

(In true fashion blog fashion... Left: My Favorite t-shirt. Right: Dress: Made out of my grandma's old skirt, Bag: Vintage, Necklace: SM)

Exploring the city has been a real treat for us since we aren't heading for the beach till a few more days. We chanced upon the Earth Day celebrations here and I was really happy to see a lot of people attend and realize how important it is to do our own little parts to save the earth! There were lots of things to do around the bay area, such as watch the city's PEP Squad perform (I have a weakness for watching all kinds of dance performances), rent a bike and go from end to end like what my brother and I did (and unfortunately at the same time endure the stench that flows from the sea right beside you... think Manila Bay air!), and buy all kinds of little knick-knacks like glowsticks, toy balloons, etc. 

(My mom just happened to be wearing her Earth Hour t-shirt tonight too! Did you participate last time?)

Here's something I picked up from the Earth Day Network ( -->

What can I do for Earth Day?

Since the first Earth Day, April 22, 1970, Earth Day has been an annual event for people around the world to celebrate the earth and renew our commitment to building a safer, healthier and cleaner world for all of us. There are many ways you can get involved. Volunteer. Go to a festival. Install solar panels on your roof. Organize an event where you live. Change a habit. Help launch a community garden. Communicate your priorities to your elected representatives. The possibilities are endless! Do something nice for the earth, have fun, meet new people, and make a difference.

So yay! :D That's one more step to save the Earth! I hope to be able to do lots more things in the next days to come. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Summer So Far

In my quest to be productive, I....

... finally brought my friends to one of the places I call home, just like I always dreamt! 

(Palawan trip with Lagy, Rj and Kevin)

...performed for the last time as an active member of LSDC-Street during our year-end recital, Revive!

(Pictures care of Adrian Gonzales! For more, log onto

... got to catch up with my fellow "unemployed" blockmates at our mini reunion
(Gotta love Steph's rockband!)

... went back to Palawan a second time, but now with my group of friends since High School!
(Days and nights filled with games, walks around the island, playing with the starfishes and sea urchins, roasting marshmallows on the bonfire, and of course, learning a dance or two! Sorry, i bit choreography from Gino's Shake Your Pom Pom routine! I like it too much! Haha)

... helped my friends hold a garage sale and spent an afternoon playing dress up!

(Photos care of The two little misses are my blog inspirations!)

... and most recently attended my cousin's first show as a swimsuit designer.

(Love the first model! Congratulations, nix!)

Right now it's back to Palawan with my family, and we've got lots of adventures lined up ahead! :D I've been missing our cousins back in Manila though, what with our movie all-nighters and late night takeouts, and random swimming days at home with different groups of people! But there's a whole summer ahead with lots more things to do and explore! Hoorah!


About 2 months ago I found myself realizing that I was about to have my first real summer in almost 4 years. Most of my college summer life had been devoted to long training days, paper work and meetings during the latter years and hurried vacations that were spent sending reports nonetheless and finding a computer shop in the middle of nowhere so that i won't miss a deadline. It's no surprise that I was always know to be MIA during family get-togethers. Then, i graduated.
 (The best thesis girls group ever! Steph, Monika, Me, Zarness and Laura)

... and that made all the difference. Suddenly I had all the free time in the world, looking for places to go, catching up with people i haven't seen, and being more present at home than ever. Although the pressures of being part of the "unemployed" community were there, I kept telling myself that there's no other time in my life when I could be as free as this. And so I relished it so much, to the point that I realized I was going in no real direction. I didn't know what I wanted to do once summer was over and the time to really work will begin, and I started to question if my free time was spent productively at all. 

And at just the right timing, an invitation to a summer retreat camp fell into my hands and I knew right away that it was exactly what I needed.

Pictures from L-R: (taken by Laura)
1-Diagnose Retreat poster
2- "Lacoste ad" fun shots during breaktime                                  
3- Gino & Street sharing their talents during the Dance Elective
4- Playing "Wanders" on the swing after a muddy afternoon in Football Elective
5- Warm bonfire at night
6- My lovely D-group with leader Laura and the pinkies
7- Relishing the last of our prayer sessions

I went to camp praying that in the end I'd know EXACTLY what I want to do with my life and be so ready with my plans. In the end, I didn't get it. But just like the amazing person that He is, He made me realize that it won't take a 5-day retreat to have all my plans laid out in front of me. Instead, it involves me making the most out of the 2 months I have left being productive in lots of different ways - being more prayerful about what I really want to do, explore and widen my job options, find ways to serve others, catch up with people I lost touch with, and be more present in my family. Sooner or later everything will fall into place. 
   "I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11)

And so in the mean time I'm being patient, and at the same time enjoying every single minute of it. Looking forward to the most exciting adventures in my life here on out! :D