I'm just a small fish in a small corner of this big Laguna, and this is how I've been swimming it

04 December, 2017

Picture Quality

I used to be an amateur photographer.

I used to take a lot of photos using FILM.

I have stopped being that "photographer" for a little over a decade now.

I used a video camera a LOT as well.

I have not stopped taking pictures...

but I am not that "amateur photographer and videographer" I once thought myself to be.

I guess this is a sort of apology for the bravado I display (read: kapal ng mukha) posting all these photos.

Well...nobody is viewing anyway. (Hmm, fishing...for a comment or two.)

03 December, 2017

Sky & Skyline, Supermoon

December 2, 2017 around 5:30 pm

Supermoon taken 11:47 pm Dec. 3, 2017.  It was supposed to have been at its largest at this point.


Sometime ago I took photos on the stretches of Nuvali blvd toward Laguna Blvd, and the same blvd leading toward the Mamplasan toll exit through Greenfield's road.  I remember posting a photo of a flowering Narra tree on an island just recently.

Boy am I glad I did.  Because really, the road side is now unrecognizable.  Some pylons are already up along that technopark road, along the San Jose villages.  I gasped upon seeing there is actually now a gas station right outside the entrance of the Tamayo's Dalta Royale estate...which is next to Verdana Mamplasan.

I'm sorry.

We cannot have it both ways...the small town ambience, with small roads and trees, and the growing population and volume of vehicles needing more roads.

In the Narra's place will be a major intersection with a flyover.  I do pity the residents along the rear of the Santarosa Estates 1 and the Santa Rosa Villages.  When you buy property, you never imagine parts right outside it will become a highway.

When we bought the lot we are in now, we asked...and asked...about the raw land that is both our green view and beyond our village.  Who owns it, what might their plans be for it?

Alas...we see more vehicles on a road there.  I have heard of friends feeling lost when Waze directed them there rather than the usual road from bgy. Tibig.
I sense a change coming, if not that being actually the Calax's route.

I have largely felt backward and silly, selfish and so not "progressive" ranting about these "developments".  But the other day I also felt assured that this OA of mine is not really OA...I am not the only one being OA (over-acting) about it.
Another mother who also moved here around the same time less than ten years ago, expressed the same...

The same OA that says dang, we are not in Kansas anymore, let's move.

My other friends joked about how insane it is that we complain about the "traffic" on the Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Rd...when it is nothing compared to MANILA traffic.  But really... it is not OA, the dismay is real.  

So is the sight of plastic, paper and other trash on the parking lots (especially of the gravel parking) in Solenad, Nuvali on Monday mornings.

As for NOISE pollution...let me talk about the Nuvali Light and Sound show some other time. I can freaking hear it when I open my windows at home.  The wind carries the sound. And the search lights are no fun either.  But wait, I already ranted about this last year. I remember seeing the bothered birds illuminated by the lights.

I don't know...the show is really COLD.  First, in the daytime it is nothing but an ugly mess of plastic and wires on the green field.  For the show, it is just too techno for my kind of Christmas.  I mean, I grew up in the ear of COD Department store animated displays... and that was HEARTWARMING.

This light show?  No Christmas warm fuzzies at all. Just so...synthetic. Sorry.

The Landmark Festival Mall

Ohhh...it is sprawling...

So nice that they preserved the replica of a statue by Dr. Jose Rizal, as well as the facade of the old center 


That river is an actual river running through the land...

A bit saddened to remember that this area was filled with big old trees...
but amazing to see this area so huge...especially this outdoor park setting.

Evia Mall (Lifestyle Center) Daang Hari

Ohhh...very quaint, cozy...and filled with the good places to eat.  Structure quite unlike our Vista Mall Sta. Rosa...

Oh my child thought we had stepped into Kidzania...

24 November, 2017

Scenes from "development" in Silang

Hope these trees stay forever....many are gone...

Hall of Justice

"Meanwhile...at the Hall of Justice.."  (he he he)

Flag ceremony on November 13, Monday.  Tagaytay City

LTO Tagaytay

     This is my 30th year of driving.  I have been driving in the Philippines for 30 years. 3 decades, in NCR, with the last 8 years Calabarzon.  Wait that means almost the whole 3rd decade in Calabarzon. Whoo. That still amazes me.
Both the fact that this makes me 48 and that I have been a resident of this place for nearly a decade.

  Save for a brief stint in Indonesia where I did not drive, I really have been driving for about 30 years.  I cannot recall each and every license renewal process, but I know that the unavailability of license cards and the length of time the process takes these days is unthinkable.  Instead of improving, the system has gotten worse. 

  I obtained my student permit in Pasay City, took the exams both written and practical for my non-professional license from the FTI terminal, and then later on living in Makati City, went for renewal at the Ayala MRT station branch.  While that branch was a tad more comfortable with its airconditioning, the "drug test" was still a disgusting hassle. I cannot remember if that one was similar to the one in Pasay City where the toilet room doors could not be locked. I remember one not even having a doorknob but a hole in its place!

  Renewing in Robinson's Sta. Rosa was uneventful on my first renewal here.  The second time was crazier.  It took longer,  and when I received my card I saw I had gotten shorter by 2 cms and lost weight! The information on my height and weight was different from my old card. When I asked about this error, I was told their computer could not handle changes.  If they could not handle changes, how did this change in the first place?

  I had never changed my address on my license.  Now, after 4 different addresses, I decided to make the revision.  The problem was, I would have to go to another branch that could do it.

  Calling the LTO Main Headquarters was alright. A polite man answered the phone and was helpful with information.  We decided Binan or Las Pinas were branches I could visit.  I dreaded going to Binan because my husband said he took so long there before, that he decided to return another day to claim his license.  A friend had just taken her son for his student permit and spent an entire day.  Also, Googling Binan LTO resulted in nothing but rants from others who said the processing also took them the entire day.

  I dreaded it so much, that I made random mentions of my errand to random friends and aquaintances. Luckily, a mother suggested I go to the TAGAYTAY LTO!  She was sure they processed revisions, as that is where she applied for her first license.  She also said it was not very full when she went.  We agreed it being located in the vicinity of the Mahogany Market made the trip more interesting.  I could buy Batangas beef afterwards!


There are parking spaces within the gates of the compound, but you can park outside it around the Mahogany Market.

 Medical exams are in this 
building, the first one before the actual LTO building.
Prepare Php 300 for the doctor to sign your certificate after asking you to read the eye chart and stepping on the weighing scale.


A Taho vendor walks by, followed by a wood carved keychain vendor.  

I will talk about the actual experience another time. For now, I will just say I am so glad I mentioned having to go for license renewal to the mom who suggested this branch.  The waiting/seating area is like a lanai, with trees in a vacant spot behind the seats.  There was a cool breeze when I went, and was out of there an hour and a half later.  The thing is, I left without a card, and was told to call prior to claiming it after month.  At least I won't mind the trip, it being in Tagaytay and at the Mahogany Market!  I did bring home a kaffir lime tree seedling from the fruit trees being sold right outside the fence...

01 October, 2017

Silang PNP emergency number

     Saw this poster at a gas station along Emilio Aguinaldo Highway last month...and this one is posted at a BPI branch.

  Postscript to my last post then.
Thank you mayor and PNP.

25 June, 2017

Security in Silang

Took this photo at the Silang Municipal Hall last Monday, Laguna Day and Jose Rizal's birthday.
This was about a minute after missing an opportunity to shoot(a photo with my phone)...a photo of the Mayor outside her office, chatting briefly with constituents right next to where I stood.  It would have been one of those candid shots a la Time, Newsweek or Life (if you remember that mag you are old like me).
I do not know her and did not seek an audience with her, I was there for a transaction. Since I am apolitical and do not have friends nor close relatives in politics, the brief encounter was interesting in iterms of the sensation I felt.  From the way an employee waved me aside saying "dadaan si Mayor" to the way those who wanted to talk to her hunched humbly before her (well she is tall so maybe I exaggerate)...it is evident that change in little towns from reverence of their leaders at near-royal status can be...well..tough. The fact is theirs, like many ruling families in many other municipalities, has led this town forever. 

I must say however, I left Silang City Hall satisfied that theirs struck me as a decent office. This as opposed to other unkempt city offices where the employees, in dress and manner just reek of...corruption. Yes even out on the streets of Silang town proper, cars--2 different cars at 2 different times that morning, stopped to yield to ours going through! It was surprising because the courtesy was obvious...they didn't have to yield but they did.  I don't know if it being Rizal's birthday had anything at all to do with it, but whatever...I salute whoever drove those two (both red) cars.

I would like to know if the building itself is the original munisipyo from the time of Rizal (when was it founded? Climbing its wooden steps feels warm &fuzzy like entering a bahay na bato of the past. Also, transacting with them was fairly pleasant; decent and legitimate.

That was Monday. Tuesday evening, a terrible thing happened in one of Silang's up and coming villages. Wednesday morning, I heard about it. Thieves had broken into a home and shot the father of the family,killing him. By Thursday one of four suspects was  caught. By Friday, the other three were arrested. Incredibly, by today, we hear news that the three shall soon be released "for lack of a warrant". Apparently the police report was also bungled, with inaccuracies initially.

So, mayor, mayor in the hall...is your city one of the fairest in the land at all? The frequency of such similar crimes is common knowledge now. Please! Fix it!!

19 June, 2017

Bake My Day

Okay not only does Vista Mall's All Day Supermarket look pretty and feel nice with jazz playing in the background, they have delicious cakes and bread baked fresh in an equally quaint kitchen...

It looks like mine! With its subway tiled wall & blue paint.. their design concept seems appealing to many moms I know. Their Optimum Bank is being finalized as well... with...voila!  French green & Floral walls.

This bakery's staff is composed of very friendly & nice people. They seem very happy. Who wouldn't  be... in such interiors!

This is their Ube Custard cake. I grabbed a pack of edible flowers from the grocery..et voilĂ 

The Calax

I am just selfish.  A terrible thing happened at 7 a.m. last Friday morning.

About a dozen dump trucks stopped traffic on Nuvali blvd...along the portion behind Santarosa Estates 1&2. This Blvd is heavy with vehicles early weekday mornings... comin and going from Mamplasan...Silang South blvd...and Nuvali.

It was my green road... with trees on the left and green green grass.
I try to ignore the transmission towers.Ere.
Now...I cannot ignore & will have to go through... construction of the Cavite

Laguna Expressway Here

In the words of Darth Vader.... Noooooooooooo!!!!!

21 April, 2017

April Showers Bring Narra Flowers

I know...Narra overload in this blog.  But in the past posts they came in March


, a day after a rainshower too.

These bloomed on April 19.

  Oh here is my pineapple in a pot...I do appreciate pineapples more now...never knew they took long to grow...

I woke up to the narra's fragrance, and looked at them in golden sunlight just after sunrise.

Bye-bye Narra tree, after 8 exactly years!

They do bloom at the same time...like these on Inchican Road...and further up, in St. Scholastica's Westgrove campus...

So have you seen/smelled any lately?  How about in the UP Diliman campus?