FROM MENDING A BROKEN HEART TO HAPPILY EVER AFTER

“He has made everything beautiful in its time” – Ecclesiastes 3:11

Exactly 4 years ago, I was at my lowest point that I published a very vendetta-y blog post (click here.). My broken-hearted self wouldn’t have a slightest clue that tomorrow (08-October-2016), all that she had written about God’s perfect plan and timing will finally come true.

My Side of the Story. I spent most of my non-committed days by travelling. For the past years, I’ve been to Singapore countless of times, Brunei Darussalam, Kuala Lumpur, Yangon, Bangkok and Seoul (Yes, I’ve been very busy hahaha). My love story I believed began in Seoul last September 2014 while shopping some “pasalubongs” in Namdaemun Market. Among all the shops there, I chose the small one which was owned by an old man. As I recall, I didn’t buy that much since it only costs me around $60. When the owner handed me my change, surprisingly he gave me this couple figurine for free. Because of the language barrier, I had a hard time understanding why he offered me this. I just thought to myself that maybe I am that lucky or maybe he pities me because I was alone walking the streets of Korea. Upon returning to my companions (which are Ms. Emee and Ms. Aila. Shout out to these 2!!!), I told them about the free stuff in that particular store. Being a freebies enthusiast, we went back for more shopping. I expected that “Ajusshi” (korean for uncle) will give them something also for free since they bought a lot of stuffs. Way more than what they budgeted. To my surprise, he didn’t give anything to them, not even discounts (WAHAHAHAHA!). At the end of the day, we concluded that he just pitied me for being alone in the streets (Hahahahaha.. I’m so kawawa daw!).

When I was handing out gifts from Korea, I told my very lucky story to my mom and older cousin (the Korean addicts). They told me that it was a love charm. For Koreans, it is tradition that they would give out free items to strangers for good luck. It was given to me so I could find true love. Cynically, I just laugh it off and made fun of it because those were the days where I accepted that I am ok and happy by myself. I’m contented to have my family who loves me unconditionally and my job who always keeps me busy. Finding love for me is like finding a needle in a haystack or finding anything inside the MRT. The ones which are very impossible to find. Well, hell, I was wrong.

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Wishing for love to come along figurines ❤

Two months after our Korea trip, my boss (Ms. Emee) decided to set me up again. Since it was already the second time, I was a bit sceptic because obviously the first time didn’t work. I just played along during this match-making process since first it will not do me any harm and second, I don’t have a choice. Duh she’s my boss (insert face palm here). The guy who she’s setting me up to? It’s Bien.

Bien and I started chatting thru Facebook (Thank you Mark Zuckerberg. Hahahah Feeling close!) and it was very constant. Any day won’t end without us chatting away and making each other laugh (Yes, even before we just love to laugh). After a couple of days, Ms. Emee decided that we should meet personally. Though our hectic schedule, she managed to pick the date, time and place (The ultimate matchmaker talaga!) and even scared Bien that if he didn’t showed-up, she will never introduce me to him ever (Prinessure pa si Kuya. Hahaha!).

Bien and I met at Tipsy Pig Capitol Commons (oh diba we have the same answer in our STD video! Hahaha) together with Ms. Emee. The feeling? I feel relaxed upon meeting him in person. There was never a dull moment during that meet-up. The three of us talked and laugh the night away. Since this is just a met-up, I didn’t stay long. Once the bill was paid, I came home with Ms. Emee.

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Photo grab from Bien’s facebook page 🙂 – Uploaded after our meet-up (excited! hahaha)

It took a month before we actually went out on a date. One of Bien’s striking personality is that he is super doooooper sweet. Recalling our messages, I have mentioned that I was craving for seafood and he instantly took me to Dampa Seaside in Macapagal. It was the best day ever!! Not only did my cravings been solved; but also, I’ve got the chance to know the most wonderful guy I have ever met. To cut the story short; since that day of endless talking and laughing, we knew that this match is perfectly made and it is for the long run.

Familiarity would best describe the connection between me and Bien. Though we were not given the luxury of time to have met earlier, but I guess this is what GOD’S PERFECT TIMING is all about. It was that kind of “hello” that means “I’ve missed you and I don’t even know you yet”. The way we always think alike in every occasion that we find it socially weird and love it. And that mutual understanding that made everything about us automatic.

Tomorrow, as I embark in this new journey, it made me fully understood the sole reason I have to get through those pains and hardships. It prepared me for something worthwhile that even I didn’t expect it. Even though it took me that long, it made me appreciate and value whoever is in front of me today and in the future. Now I proudly say; THE WAIT IS FINALLY OVER.

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Our very first photo as a couple ❤ ❤ ❤

 

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2013 WRAP UP

 

2013 is the year of CHANGE

Time really do flies fast. It seems like it was only yesterday that I was composing my very first year-end recap and now I’m trying to contemplate my second one (YEY!!).

The year 2013 was a big change especially for my career. My schedule was pretty jam-packed that my blog site became dead, stagnant andcanal-smelling (So sorry *insert sad face here*). But here I am making a big comeback and I promise to keep everybody posted on my new adventures, tricks and travels (pinky swear).

The Great Singapore Adventure. 

 

My very first travel out of the country ALONE and I have never been proud of myself. It was during this adventure that I discovered who I really am and what I wanted to do in my life. Special thanks to FnF family who generously adopted me during those times. You will be forever in my heart. You can read it all in my 5-part posts:

https://joaqly.wordpress.com/2013/03/27/the-lion-city-day-1-2/

https://joaqly.wordpress.com/2013/05/07/the-lion-city-day-2-imma-tourist/

https://joaqly.wordpress.com/2013/05/08/the-lion-city-day-3-a-child-at-heart/

https://joaqly.wordpress.com/2013/06/01/the-lion-city-day-4-animals-merlion-and-chinatown/

https://joaqly.wordpress.com/2013/06/07/the-lion-city-day-5-marina-bugis-and-another-celebration/

Career Shift.

I’m back in the world of Engineering and in Fiber Optics. *Disclaimer: Not my photo*

Leaving Megaworld Corp who took care of me for 3.5 years is one of the hardest thing that I had to do. Since opportunity only knocks once, I took full advantage of it. I packed my stuff and embarked to what seems like an entirely new journey. I’m back to outside plant engineering, full turn key cell sites and fiberization!! ( hell yeah… Ok, I’ll stop with the technical terms already HAHA!)

The Mindanao Experience.

I never thought I would love this city.

Fortunately and thankful enough to my new job, I was assigned to one of the most beautiful city in the country, DAVAO CI-TEY… I stayed in this city for the longest time so I made it to a point I would experience what the city has to offer. Uh-huh I’m gonna share them to you.

My work / travel buddies: Joy, JR and Robert

first stop: GARDEN CITY OF SAMAL.


I am a self-confessed beach bum and this city has a lot of it. I didn’t let the chance to pass by so I went to one of their proudest destination: the Garden City of Samal.

A 15 minute ro-ro (roll on/roll of) ride from Davao City(Sasa Wharf) is all it would take to get to Samal island.

Fun ride with Team Mindanao: Arnel, JR, Jonjon, Mhel and Robert 

 Of course the most wanted photo opt.

Of all the islands situated in Samal, my friend suggested that we go to Isla Reta. Yes, another boat ride coming right up. 🙂

A 30-minute banca ride to Isla Reta

All was worth it.

next: Davao Crocodile Park.

A photo like this is a must in a time like this. 😛

Once you searched Davao in Google this tourist spot will definitely pop-up. Davao Crocodile Park is an establishment wherein it shows the crocodile farming system. Actually it housed the very controversial largest crocodile in the world “Lolong”. Unfortunately he was already dead when we got there (boo-hoo).  For me, a zoo is a zoo. I’ll  gonna give  the park crew two thumbs up because they manage to make it clean and odor free.

Last stop: Britannia Group of Islands – Surigao Del Sur

Good Morning Surigao

This really confirms that I’m one hell of a beach bum. This trip was the most memorable one in my Mindanao career (no joke!). Britannia Islands is located at San Agustin, Surigao Del Sur; a 6-hour bus drive from Davao. I suggest to travel during night time to ease the dreadful voyage pain (lol!).

The bus ride was sooooo worth it since I got to experience the best beaches and islands I’ve been to. Let me post some of the breathtaking photos of the islands we’ve been.

We banca with style 😛

Waves crashing at each other.

Who wouldn’t enjoy this serene place?

Only in the PHILIPPINES 🙂

Group photo with the team 🙂

and we like to goof around.

The total experience was pure AWESOMENESS. Though people tend to think negative things about Mindanao due to its chaotic persona, I do believe that it got real potentials. Like their untouched and uncommercialized beaches, their scrumptious meals and most especially their good-hearted people.

For more photos of my Mindanao journey, please click on the link:

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10152102312532057.1073741843.617807056&type=1&l=79bc30161f

Goodbye Papa.

2013 brought us a loss in the family, our Grandfather. It was hard because we were used to having him around. We are aware that there will be a lot of adjustments now that he is gone. On the lighter note, we know that he is now in a good place where there are no sickness and hardships.

Wherever you are PAPA we love you dearly and we miss you each and every day.

Nike We Run Manila.

I did joined last year that is why there is no reason for me to not join this year’s run. This was the most awaited fun run of the year and I came home to manila for this. What made me more proud was it was held in my homeland, MARIKINA CITY (rock on!! \m/). The route was not that successful as the one held in BGC but still, my Marikeño blood just screams hell yeah HOME PRIDE!

With the “master” Coach Rio

The Christmas Party.

This was the event I always looked forward to not because of the prizes and gift-giving but also it is the chance for me to be in character. For this year, we were asked to dress up as our favorite character. For team Mindanao (in which I am part of) we decided to be united, so we dressed up as…..

THE AVENGERS, starring me as Black Widow (what the…..) also starring….

The White Swan (confusing right?!) That’s my good office friend Cherry who dressed up as my archenemy Black Swan. (double the trouble!)

Here Comes The Future Bride.

When my friend Faith told me she was getting married, I was so ecstatic that finally she will get something she ever wanted. What made it so special was that she’s getting hitched with someone who she loves so dearly and she could get the same from her better half. Of course a wedding would not be complete without a bridal shower. Since most of the photos we took were kind of R-18, I’ll be posting something GP (HAHA!).

Congrats Faith and Gab!! I love you both..

 

Tagaytay Christmas.

This year was really a year of change. For the first time we had Christmas Eve at one of the most relaxing place Tagaytay city. It was the time to bond and share our blessings to each other. We definitely missed my sister because she is currently in Dubai for work. Hope to spend the holidays with you sis. 🙂

 

 

I can’t think for a better ending for this post so……… IT’S A WRAP 2013… 😀

 

Please don’t hesitate to leave a comment or drop an email at joanna.arandia@gmail.com. You could also tweet me @joaqly. Thanks.. xoxo

THE FICTIONAL MEN OF MY LIFE

I love reading books. If I am hooked, it would take me at minimum 24 hours to finish an average 500 pages book. What’s interesting is that I am fascinated with erotic, romantic books. To set the record straight, I am no sex maniac and nowhere near of becoming one (HAHA). Now we’re clear on that, let us go back (Defensive mode, HAHA). These so called romantic-erotic novels surprisingly hits the best seller lists and is now being a craze. No wonder, even I jumped on the bandwagon.

Since the hype of 50 shades of grey, which by the way popularized these kinds of novels, I can’t seem to stop looking for the likes of it. Who wouldn’t go ga-ga over the likes of the dark Christian Grey?

Though Mr. Grey has his share of popularity, I would like to introduce fictional guys who are a lot like him or even better.

CHRISTIAN GREY (Fifty Shades Trilogy)

Yes, he’s gay buy Matt Bomer perfectly fits Christian’s physical descriptions.

Ok let us start with the one who set the standards of men high who possesses power, fortune, fame and practically a very hot physical appearance. All women across the earth including me wanted to be Anastasia Steele for a day and be in the room of pain all day and night. What makes him interesting is that he has his own way to charm a girl. Who would ever forget the time Christian took Ana to sky gliding during the sunrise and the fact he flies Charlie Tango and the most famous tagline “Laters Baby”? Since I believed everybody has read this novel, I won’t elaborate on the storyline. How I wish I could get an email with this signature:

Christian Grey

Twitchy Palmed, CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings Inc. (:P)

First book – Fifty Shades of Grey; Second book – Fifty Shades Darker; Third book – Fifty Shades Freed

GIDEON CROSS (Crossfire Novel)

This picture is kinda blurred but he’s so dark and dangerous.

OH MY GOSH, this guy is my ultimate crush. I prayed each and every night that my Mr. Right would be just like him (a girl can always dream. Haha). Mr. Dark and Dangerous as Eva (the female protagonist) would call him. He is so straight forward and will do anything to get what he wants. Unlike Christian, he is not rough and doesn’t believe in dom & sub relationship. What made me fall in love with him is his possessiveness and he is not afraid to show it. He takes care what is his to the point he killed a man to protect her (Uh-oh spoiler alert). Eva describes him as a sex god so I can’t imagine what kind of aura he possesses (wwwaaahhh!). I could go on and on to the extent I would blabber on how I love this guy. Right now, I have been cray-cray over these books and been re-reading it over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over…… again. So please please please read these books and join my hyperness (lol!).

According to the author, she is planning to have 5 books on this and apparently 3 have already been out.

First book – Bared to you; Second book – Reflected in you; Third Book – Entwined with you; Fourth and Fifth book – TBA

RUSH FINLAY (Too Far Novels)

Rush Crush 😛

Who would not fall in love with this bad boy playboy? He is the only son of Dean Finlay, the drummer of the famous rock band Slacker Demon. He got tattoos, piercings and a hot bod. What’s charming about this dude is that he could be a badass but he is just this charming and sweet guy ready to please his girl. Also, he wouldn’t mind if he stays at home all day as long as his girl is with him. Choosing on who will come first between Blaire (the love of his life) and his family, he manages to make the right choice in choosing his own happiness. Aaawww… now that’s a guy who would fight for the one he loves. (hearts everywhere with eyes twinkling).

First book – Fallen Too Far; Second Book – Never Too Far; Third Book – Forever Too Far

GABRIEL O. EMERSON

Oh, Mr. Emerson.

An old soul. This is the perfect way to describe this guy. A strict but dreamy college professor who specializes and masters on Dante Alighieri. He defined her muse (Julia) as her Beatrice. Who in the hell in the 21st century would call you that? One thing is for sure, no one i know (HAHA!). That’s why this guy is so special. At first he didn’t recognize Julia, his childhood sweetheart and his sister’s BFF, during one of his seminars. They even started at the wrong foot since Gabriel was way too mean and harsh to her. But when he knew Julia’s true identity, the world shifted and they went against all odds knowing about the teacher-student policy. It’s them against the world. Since there are no secrets left untold, there had been a time when a school hearing occurred because of their romantic relationship and he took full responsibility of it. Of course, the school sent him packing. The way Gabriel came back for Julia was the icing on the cake and I won’t tell how (HAHAHA). Just read the book. The storyline is fast because there are only two books for this series and I telly you, Gabriel will be sweep your hearts away by being poetic and a perfect gentleman.

First Book – Gabriel’s Inferno; Second Book – Gabriel’s Rpture

There are books like these which I also recommend for reading but the guys in those novels are not just as moving as these guys above (HAHA). Here it is:

  • Twisted Perfection by Abbi Glines: An extended story of the Too Far Novels in which it features the story of Woods Kerrington. The owner of the club where Blaire had worked.
  • The Marriage to a Billionaire series by Jennifer Probst: As the series implied, marrying a guy with a contract. First book – The Marriage Bargain; Second book – The Marriage Trap; Third Book – The Marriage Mistake.

Well there you have it; you wouldn’t imagine what my ibooks looked like right now with all the reading I’m doing. I hope I inspired you to read these books instead of waiting for the movie version of it. Rest assured, it’s so much better reading rather than watching :).

Special thanks to Jannel (http://thebusystreets.wordpress.com/) and Justeen for providing me some of the info needed for this post and for being my book buddies. xoxo

Do you also have some fictional boyfriends wannabe? Share it by leaving a comment or you could email me at joanna.arandia@gmail.com. Also you could tweet me @joaqly. Thanks and hope you enjoyed.

THE LION CITY, DAY 5 – MARINA, BUGIS AND ANOTHER CELEBRATION

Time really flies fast when you’re having fun. I can’t believe it all comes to an end. For my last day in the lion city my tour guide for the day, Faith, took me to Gardens by the Bay, Marina Bay Sands and Bugis Street.

Riding the MRT for the last time and breaking the rules for sitting at the reserved seats 😛

Gardens by the bay is an attraction where it replicates famous gardens in different countries. What fascinated me were the tall trees which were called the Supertree Grove.

This way to Gardens by the Bay.. 🙂

It’s all so serene

The Supertree grove live in action! 😀

There are bridges around the Supertree grove but unfortunately there is a fee to roam around.

I would strongly suggest to visit Gardens by the Bay at night time because the lights at this place is sooooo beautiful.

Across Gardens by the Bay is Marina Bay Sands.

Singapore’s Newest Attraction

Marina Bay Sands is a newly opened world-class hotel in Singapore. It has a unique architectural design because a large boat is sitting on top of the three towers. I believe the top most part of the hotel showcases their amenities like the club, infinity pool, lounge etc. We didn’t have a chance to come up the hotel because it was way too pricey. We just roamed around and checked the retail shops.

The high class Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands

Another view of the Singapore Skyline. Magnificent isn’t it?

How high class you say?? Louis Vuitton just have this floating store lying around. 😛

 After drooling on the rich and famous hang out place, we went to Bugis Street, the heaven on earth place for the fashionistas.

There it is!!!

Before the shopping begins, we came across what seems like a line-free J.Co.. Very unusual lol!!

Bugis street is the Greenhills of Singapore. It is a 4-storey building with clothes, make-ups, bags, shoes, souvenirs, accessories. You name it they have it without leaving a hole in the pocket (you know what I mean!). Heaven it is!!

Suddenly missed the Philippine Peso. 😦

For our last stop, we had dinner at Once Upon A Bar because it was Fabo’s birthday that day. We decided to dine out to celebrate. We ordered Filipino food of course.

Can’t wait to eat dinner

Happy Birthdate Fabs. 🙂

I so enjoyed myself during my 5-day vacation. I am very fortunate when it comes to my friends because they really took the time off their work just to show me around. I would like say thank you to Faith, Gab, Fabo, Ness, Tomz, Chinny, Gelo, Icon, Mike, Em and Kione (the FnF family!) for being my friends and for taking care of me. I do appreciate them a lot. I think the last time we did this bonding was since college and that was many many many years ago (we are not that old, i just exaggerated the many. HAHA!). Friendship will never be enough to describe what we have for each other. I love you guys for eternity, till next time.. Ciao!

FnF Family.

*photograb from Fabo’s Path page*

That’s all folks for my big and most wanted Singapore vacation last March. I will be back not because of the attractions but because I wanted to spend more time with the people who are close to my heart. ❤

Please don’t hesitate to leave any comments and suggestions. You can also email me at joanna.arandia@gmail.com or tweet me @joaqly. Thanks. 🙂

THE LION CITY, DAY 4: ANIMALS, MERLION AND CHINATOWN

Before I get into details on my next adventure, I would like to set the record straight regarding the dates of my SG Vacation. This took place last March 2-7, a month before deciding to totally move into the country. Yah I know my posts are way overdue, but as the saying goes: “it’s better late than never”. Since that’s been cleared up, let’s go back to my exploits.

First stop: Singapore Zoo

Singapore zoo has an area of 28 Hectares. Imagine how many animals would fit into that. TOO MANY! It is now tagged as “The World’s Best Rainforest Zoo”. I couldn’t agree more because the zoo is not the common ones that we had our field trips on during the pre-school and grade school days because most of the animals were not encased in a cage and there were no high barriers from where I’m standing. To prove my point here are some photos.

*Note: Please forgive me with my repetitive picture poses which are composed of “the peace sign”, “the double peace sign”, “approved”, “two thumbs up”, “pucker lips”, “the rockstar” and “the beh”. (HAHAHA!)*

The otters welcomed us upon our arrival. Though they are not visible in the photo, they are just swimming around there lol!

Singapore’s newest attraction: Giant Panda Forest

The cute red bear.

Shhhhh.. Po is sleeping 😛

This photo is just too cute not to be posted.. LOL!!

Upon exiting the Giant Panda forest, we ran into this panda food store. They offer the cutest food ever. Just look at their panda pao.

Panda overload

This is what I’m talking about the animals who are free to roam around. And yes, they are alive. 😀 With Fabo and Ness

These monkeys can easily jumped on me. Though I’m smiling here, I was so nervous. HAHA

My first time to see a kangaroo. 🙂

True to life Planet of the Apes.. 😛

“There’s something wrong with this photo” photo 😛

This elephant almost ran over me and I’m still happy about it. HAHA

I was not mocking here. I’m really scared for my life for this lion can eat me alive in any moment

Our souvenir photo with the Pandas. 🙂 (Ness, Fabo and Me)

Rock on Singapore Zoo \m/

After walking for nearly 4 hours inside the zoo, FABO and I decided to have lunch at…….

I am against the light. LOL!

IKEA is a like a hardware store but much better (you know what I mean? :P). It showcases DIY furniture like beds, chairs, tables etc. The best part of this store was their food especially their meatballs (yuuuuum!). Unfortunately, the meatballs were not available that day (bbbboooo!). Instead we ordered.

Roast chicken. Look at the size of that thang?!

Next stop: Marina Bay

The iconic water breathing merlion is located in Marina Bay. It also has a great view of Marina Bay Sands (the newest world-class hotel in Singapore), the flyer (the tallest Ferris wheel in the world) and Singapore’s infrastructures. Thanks Fabo, who is one of the best photographers in the world, for these captivating photos.

This photo really deserves a two thumbs up!

Singapore Skyline

The opposite side of the bay 🙂

Just beautiful…. I meant the view.. HAHA! 😛

Last Stop: Chinatown

Do you ever wonder why every country has its own Chinatown? That’s been boggling my mind since I step foot in Binondo (lol). But seriously, why is it? Chinatown is Chinatown. Tiangge (flea market) all over and of course food!

Welcome to Chinatown!

My dinner, lemon chicken. Yuuuummmm!!

Good thing the Chinese New Year decorations are still up.

That wraps up my walkathon day 4. Special thanks to my friends Fabo and Venice for being my tourist guides for the day. xoxo

For more photos please do check out my facebook page or just click on the link. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151464164727057.1073741839.617807056&type=1&l=e9cff422cf

Like what you read and you have the answer about my Chinatown question? Please don’t forget to leave your comments and suggestions. You could email me at joanna.arandia@gmail.com or tweet me @joaqly. Thanks 🙂