Malaysia: Batu Caves

We were one day early for the Thaipusam Festival. We actually didn’t know about it, so we felt lucky to witness the preparations made by our Hindu brothers and sisters. We were greeted by this gigantic statues and intricate architectural designs. There were a lot of people both tourists and devotees roaming around and performing some rituals.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

People were busy going back and forth. There were also stalls that sell different kinds of stuff. There was one that has a snake photo booth. You have to pay at least 3 RM to have a picture with a snake.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

This picture’s kind blurry. This was the result of zooming in,and no-camera-control because I was hungry and shaking a little.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

This is one the prayer areas.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

Many people entered this, but they had to remove their footwear.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

The big yellow balloon. It was so big, I wondered if it could lift me up.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

The famous Punjabi sweets. I bought 10 assorted pieces. My sister didn’t enjoy it much as I did.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

Another beautiful view… Made me feel like I was in a movie.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

The famous Murugan Statue.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

I was too tired and hungry. i was about 23 steps high when I decided to go down. However, I thought this might be my one and only chance, so I gathered my all my chakra, and climbed the 272 steps high cave. It was worth it.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

As you can see, it was a busy day. Some people were also carrying a pot and they had covered themselves with a yellowish clay.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

I was amazed how devoted the Hindus are. There were very old men who actually managed to perform their rituals. Young children as early as 3 or four were also participating.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

After  the 272 steps exercise, I was awed by the Ramayan Cave. It was my first time to actually enter a cave. I was so overwhelmed. I conquered my fear of falling down,and had crossed out one from my bucket list. Anyway, my sister was waiting for me at the top for at least 10 minutes.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

I was contented by the view, so I didn’t decide to go further. Plus, I thought the Ramayana Cave was already too sacred to intrude.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

I was also surprised because there were two men dressed in these costumes. I believed they were seers. Hindus were whispering something to them, and they also responded.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

Every corner has its own design.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

People were worshiping. I like this small temple-like place.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

These are part of their religious beliefs.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

Another attractions are the monkeys. They were waiting for people with bananas. They would get the fruit and go back to their places.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

The view halfway.

Batu Cave Malaysia

Batu Cave Malaysia

This picture reminded me to be brave and fly.

It’s More Fun in the Philippines: Lake Sebu

I finally had the chance to zipline. I waited for this day. Lake Sebu’s zipline is known to be the highest in Southeast Asia. It’s 600 feet high! Tehre are two ziplines. The first one is 740 meters, and the second one is 460 meters long.My sister and I survived the thrilling ride. We also enjoyed the beautiful scenery. Lake Sebu is also famous for its 7 falls, tilapia (mud fish), and the T’boli tribe. Fly! Hummingbird!

Zipline at lake Sebu

Zipline at lake Sebu

One of the seven falls

One of the seven falls

Lake Sebu

Lake Sebu

I hadn’t fully recovered after the 400 something steps in Tinago. In order to see this view, I had to go down 740 steps. It wasn’t easy for me because my legs were very tired.

Mountain View Resort and Restaurant

Mountain View Resort and Restaurant

After the seven falls adventure, we were hungry as a bear, so we went to Mountain View Resort and Restaurant. They served different kinds of tilapia dish.

T'boli Women

T’boli Women

These are the T’boli women. They handmade accessories. The prices are really cheap compared to those from the souvenir shops.

Lake Sebu

Lake Sebu

It’s More Fun in the Philippines: Mindanao Escapde

My mom, sister, aunt, cousin, and I went on a week long vacation. We traveled from Iloilo to Iligan City, Lanao Del Norte by plane. We rode on the bus for 12 hours to Davao City. We passed by Bukidnon and Cagayan De Oro. We then took another 4 hour bus ride to General Santos City in South Cotabato. After spending a night there, we headed to Lake Sebu. We stayed in Banga for another night. We passed by Koronadal and Suralah. We went back to GenSan and stayed there for two nights before going back to Iloiloi by plane. It was a week to remember. We were all backpackers. It was fun despite the heat of summer.

Maria Cristina

One of the Magagandang Tanawin in the Philippines. It generates electricity.

Maria Cristina falls

Maria Cristina falls (View from the top)

People are not allowed to go near the falls since it is dangerous. You can enjoy the view from the building next to it. Tourists are allowed to go up and take pictures.

Tinago falls, Lanao Del Norte

Tinago falls, Lanao Del Norte

Iligan, Lanao del Norte is a home of more than 20 water falls. From the name itself “ILIGAN” means “to go downstream.”There are a lot of swimming pools with spring water. And you can’t afford NOT going to Tinago Falls. Legend says that the water’s depth is infinite. Well, if you have the endurance to go down 420 steps or more, then you’re sweat will be worth it. A movie was once shot in this spot.

Tinago falls

Tinago falls

Tinago falls

Tinago falls

Tourists can go near the falls. You just have to pay, and you can go there and enjoy a “fresh shower.”

The Cat’s Dead (RIP 2012-2014)

I got my answer last night. The pig or rat said it all. The maybe-dead-cat is dead. I was so scared to open the box. Fortunately/Unfortunately, I was courageous enough to finally take off the lid. What I knew was a little hurtful, but it made my mind finally peaceful.

Lesson: Whenever in doubt whether the cat is dead, alive or maybe dead, face your fear of knowing something, open the box, and be grateful you did, rather than living not knowing at all.

Level 1: Completed!

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It has been a year since I ventured into a new journey. I am proud to say that I did not stay long being a NEET, I became a part of “EET.”

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During the graduate school orientation 2013, I was very tensed. I was not sure if I was bound to enter the next level with my fellow “explorers.” One year passed, our number decreased. From being top 10, one by one, we became top 7. I am actually wondering if one of these days, I shall go AWOL, too.
But to keep the fire burning, I am going to be a hardy. I am lucky to have these wonderful and daring people around me. I am opening my windows. I am cracking my wall. I am welcoming the possibility that these once strangers and newly found friends, would be part of my exploring and growing up stage. With them, I can sing. With them, I can be gay. With them, I show a part of my “I” that I always mask by my “me.”

I am still surviving because of them. I study, I play, I laugh, and I open myself little by little. Hello Strangers! Let’s be friends!

Honesty Comes Handy

Why I love Tonarino Kaiibutsu-kun (My Little Monster)

  • Haru and Mitty are honest. Yes! Unlike other shoujo  manga couples, they say what they want outright. If they like each other, although they were “hesitant at first,”  they were vocal about it. They say “I Like you” to each other not just to express their feelings but to ward-off unwanted “other girls and boys” in the picture as well.  In typical love stories, the guy is usually a tsundere. He is always hiding his love through his mask. A typical manga girl gets attracted to bad guys with mysterious and arrogant character. In Tonari, however, it is somehow mixed. Mitty is the tsundere while Haru accompanied by his “chaotic:” character is the one who professes his love openly. It might not have been “romantic love” at first, but it is enough to crack the walls of tsundere Mitty.
  • Haru, although he has trust issues, never looked at other girls. When Oshima confessed to him, he is also kind enough to turn her down politely. He does not trust himself, and he is unsure about Mitty, whenever he feels he is drifting away, he gives Mitty and himself a check. . . a reminder that he can actually be happy and trust again (little by little). Accordingly, Mitty, being a study-bug and dense at the same time, can never realize that Yamaken is also attracted to her. She is too focused with studying, and of course, what I like her is that, she is also a one-man girl. The moment she says “I like you” to Haru, she does not entertain other guys. She always tries her best to be showy of her feelings. Also, the only competitor Haru has is Mitty’s grade obsession.
  • Yamaken and Oshima are contended with their unrequited love. Yes, they are times when they try to win Mitty and Haru’s heart. Nonetheless, they failed. And they were happy, too. They both know they do not stand a chance, yet, for the sake of being honest, they still confessed.
  • The characters are growing old. I like stories with transition period. It means Mitty and Haru are not only stuck in love as teenagers, but as adults as well. The mangaka is able to capture my ideal progress in the story without making my head hurts (When I watched Bokura Gaita, I wanted to punch the faces of all characters).

In my point of view, Tonari is a manga based on the story of love, trust, and honesty. These three are the most common theme of course, yet I personally think Tonarino Kaibutsu-kun is one of the manga that captured these perfectly. (Aside fro Gakuen Alice, Dengeki Daisy, Koukou Debut, and Kaichouwa-Maid-Sama) If you are looking a light read, you should really try this. I prefer reading the manga since there are many funny and cute scenes. But, I also recommend the animation if you want to see them in action.

Busy and in a hurry

Since all of use are all going to die, I might as well have my own bucket list. It’s a fact that I’m a member of the “generation teenage mutants,” thus, I claim the right to be in a hurry. My life credit might reach its limit soon. The month that I feared the most is over. I bid August goodbye. Hello September! With my not-so-bright-eyes, I look forward to what is in store for me. Let’s “unbox” the cat. It maybe dead or not, I’ll face it head on.