Saccharine Irony

This site is a compilation of fluid thoughts, a collection of poetry, random glimpses of humor and tragedy, spontaneous notions of an extremely sensitive mind.

Night Swimming Madness March 8, 2010

Filed under: Events,Love,Weather — Aimee @ 9:09 am
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tired from swimming

Sunday nights for the past two weekends had been spent swimming at the spacious and luxurious Marco Hotel, and although I don’t fancy myself a good swimmer, I can at least say that my abilities have improved from poor to not-so-poor. Well, “not-so-poor” means that I can actually reach one portion of the pool from another without sinking and that I can float on my back for quite some time, which is good, because that gives me a chance to stare at tips of the high palm trees, the dark violet sky, and the stars during early evenings.

My swimming buddies are actually pretty good swimmers, so I have no choice but to work extra hard on my freestyle swimming abilities. Well, I’ve yet to learn how to dive without creating a scene and to actually tread water.  It’s just that if I stay in a solitary position while on water, I tend to, well, sink. Perhaps it has got to do with my legs or maybe with my mind, which shouts “sink” faster than my body can respond.  Oh well.

The gang is planning to go night swimming more often, what with all the 5-hour power interruptions and the sultry weather making us all crave for warm waters and cooler breezes. Which reminds me, I still need to buy a swimming cap (Speedo has some really cute albeit highly-affordable choices) and some goggles. Well, maybe a new tankini too, if the finances permit.

The other weekend we were treated to a full sunset and a full moon. I was able to snap some photos of the huge orange sun setting way behind the distant mountains while Carmela was driving her Pajero.

slowly sinking, sinking... sinking

And then of the the full moon that evening, during intervals of swimming, shivering, devouring junk, and setting the camera.

the fat moon

The previous weekend we were not treated to any blazing sunsets or full moons, just a sky dotted with stars. While floating I was able to make out a few constellations of my childhood, and even attempted to find the stars which Chad and I have picked for ourselves, years ago. But that proved to be too heartbreaking so I snapped out of my reverie and swam to the edge of the pool before drying off.

Exhausted and shivering, we decided to have dinner over barbecues, grilled chicken, and ice-cold Cokes.

Looks like summer is finally here. 🙂


Bukidnon Weekend March 2, 2010

Filed under: Faves,Food,Love,Saccharine thoughts,Travel — Aimee @ 2:37 pm
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tribal necklace

I spent the weekend in one of my favorite places in the world, Malaybalay, a small city of pine trees and streams, seated deep into the heart of Bukidnon province.

A year after I graduated from college, I took up a work assignment in this small city for three straight years, until I decided to come home and take up another career.  Yet, the city has always held very distinct memories for me.  Every cafe, park, and street corner tells a story;  and even the stars, brighter than those in the smog-filled city, have their own tales to tell.

I traveled over the weekend primarily to get some downtime – and take some really good pictures – so that’s exactly what I did. And it surely did not hurt that I was traveling with one of my bubbliest friends in the whole wide world, Nashy.  So it was laughter most of the time, and lots of shopping trips on the side.

Kaamulan grounds

quiet streets in the morning

We stayed at the 1st Avenue Apartelle, a cozy inn tucked away in some lonely street off the main roads. Since the Kaamulan Festival had kicked off more than a week before our trip, booths have already sprouted all over the Capitol Grounds, where sellers and a lot of restos have set shop.  Streetdancing weekend was still one week away though, so there were no big crowds anywhere.  The pace was relatively relaxed, with just a few tourists and locals milling all over.

We checked in at the inn by lunchtime. After depositing our bags, Nashy and I chose to have lunch at Amadeo Steak and Asian Cuisine. Kicking our shoes off and putting on our sunglasses, we ordered pasta and seafood and ate in a Bali-inspired cabana in the garden, over candlelight (there were a few annoying bugs, being in the garden and all, so I asked for candlelight). I ordered the saffron pasta, which was divine, and relaxed a bit before heading off to the Kaamulan Park/Grounds for some photographs.

with Nash at Amadeo

Saffron Pasta

There are a good many things  I love best about the Kaamulan Park, especially during the Kaamulan Festival: towering trees, horses and horseback riding, log cabins, and wooden guest homes that look like gingerbread houses. A small stream runs through the park, and on quiet afternoons one can hear the sound of bubbling water tumbling over the rocks. We planned to go horseback riding, zip lining, and even wall climbing that day, but the 2 o’clock sun proved too much for us. So we simply surveyed the park for a few minutes, sat on verdant grass to gaze at the skies, and snapped our cameras.

some provincial office that looked like a house from fairytales

the sun, playing games

lovely trees

We whiled away the rest of the afternoon visiting booths, haggling prices, and shopping for a bit. I bought some anthurium plants and a rose cactus for Mom, while Nashy splurged (with emphasis on splurged, haha) on her purchases. Dinner was uneventful, as power interruptions spoiled our plans of visiting cafes and having coffee, so we simply stayed at the inn, watched some movie with Jim Sturgess in it on cable, and slept early for our eight o’clock Mass at the Monastery of Transfiguration the Sunday after.

The Monastery of Transfiguration

impressive architecture by the late Leandro Locsin

yep, still hope to get married here, someday 🙂

After the Mass, I could not leave the place – of course – without taking home the famous Monk’s Blend coffee, so I bought a small pack, to sample with my new coffeemaker back home. I was looking forward to breakfast at Bukidnon Brew Cafe after leaving the church at the Monastery, but I forgot that they were closed on Sundays. So, after a routine brunch (without coffee! :<) we headed to the shops again to haggle some more. I stopped along a few interesting items, took some snaps, all without giving in to my usual shopping impulses. I almost congratulated myself for not really splurging. Well, mainly because I’ve already bought some shoes on bargain the night before. Ooops.

Abaca bags and beads

some interesting necklace from Dire Husi

pretty rosette necklace from Hinombo

sinamay summer bags!

bright colored wooden beads

So by 12:00 noon on Sunday, we checked out from the inn and stayed at some pastries shop downtown, while Nashy and I waited for her sister, who was driving through Bukidnon from Davao, to pick us up. We finally set for the bigger city before 1:00 PM; the fierce heat and the lovely sight of the trees by the roadside and the washed-maong skies beyond lulling us peacefully throughout the almost 2-hour drive.

check out time

at the Angel’s Log pastries shop. The ensaymada I had was melt-in-your-mouth delicious.

Next time I’m in Malaybalay, I hope to go horseback riding at Quadra Eco Resort, spend an entire afternoon reading the books at Bukidnon Brew Coffee over fragrant coffee, and have my favorite Beef Teriyaki again at Le Cafe.

Having visited the place again after two long years, Malaybalay is still the same, yet different in so many ways. Or perhaps, it is I who have become different, albeit in little, unobtrusive ways. I left this city for good two years ago, convinced that I spent too long a time trying to love a a place that will never love me back. Still, there is nothing quite like the sight of mountains and trees and the small-town feel of a charming tree-bordered town over a short weekend – gone too soon! These are just a few of the wonderful things you don’t get in a crowded, humid city. Different or the same, I know I will always be going back.

Many people have fallen in love with Malaybalay, Bukidnon, myself included, and it’s easy to see why.

until next time! 🙂


A Chaotic But Fun Weekend October 13, 2009

Filed under: Fashion,Travel — Aimee @ 11:07 am
Tags: , , ,

I spent the weekend attending baking classes, working on pending projects, spending dinner and after-dinner laag with a girlfriend, shopping for a new hobo bag (a great steal actually! :)), skipping sewing classes,  going on a Sunday road trip with my brother’s girlfriend’s family, gazing at a waterfall, swimming, taking photos, and pigging out. Phew.

I actually needed Mentopas after the road trip, especially after hiking, swimming, and sitting in the car for almost four hours. It was chaotic, you can say that, but it was also fun. Now I just need to catch up on my sewing classes. We were tasked to sew our very own sleeveless blouse last Sunday (thank God Mae and Estee were there, so I merely copied notes!) – and that involved taking all the necessary measurements, tracing patterns, cutting them, and tracing them again on a blousy piece of fabric. Then the lingerie comes next. And then the dresses. I’m feeling both excited…. and… and… apprehensive.  I can’t imagine sewing my own dress and actually wearing it. That would be phenomenal. 🙂

Now some snaps.

chat, nash, me

chat, nash, me



the girls :)

the girls 🙂