N Hotel

I am fresh from Cagayan de Oro City. Wait, while I arrived in the wee hours of this day, I wouldn’t really say fresh because I feel anything but, having to endure yet another delayed flight just before midnight. It’s so sad that flying here in the country is so lousy at this point. In about the twenty times or so that I flew in the last year, my flight was delayed about nineteen times. It is that bad. On the one hand, I am glad at least that they have done something about the lack of seats in gates and waiting areas, and the rest rooms have undergone significant facelifts. Now they just really have to do something about air traffic!

Anyway, before I run out of words ranting about the management of airports here, lemme tell you about the hotel I stayed in Cagayan de Oro this time. I was pretty holed up at the N Hotel the entire time I was in the city. First, I was a speaker for two days at a conference. Second, I was too lazy to go out because I was alone. And third, because I am currently hooked up with a new gaming app that’s gripping the world, and the hotel was prime spot for things to catch, I was more than happy to stay put.

I was not sorry of course. The hotel is located on the major highway just before you enter the city proper. It is not that old but there was that whiff of mustiness when you first enter its premises then the rooms. It goes away after a while though and I began to get settled after the first hour. The room was spacious and big enough for three. Bed was good bordering on great but I didn’t like the lighting that much. I love muted whites and yellows in hotel rooms, and this one’s too orangey. These kinds of rooms make me a little restless. That, coffee at night, and finalizing my presentation did me no good on the first night. Good thing I made up for it the second night.

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This is one of the better hotels I’ve stayed in. As I said, I practically stayed here for three days. I had all my meals here, and I could say it was a-okay, nothing to rave about but okay. If I had the time and the inclination, I would have taken a dip in the pool.

Of lousy customer service

I was royally pissed again last Friday when, for the nth time, my flight was delayed as I was coming back from a business trip. What the hell. Tell me, why is this the new normal? For a private company who promises quality air transportation service, this really sucks. And it is not even a big deal anymore nowadays. Passengers almost have that kind of air of resignation about them, like they were used to it. I am kind of, too. But you know, something must be done about this. We could not go on like this forever. We should not.

I am tired of staring at the walls of airports.

Tired of looking at fellow dejected passengers.

Tired of seeing harassed airline employees.

Tired of sitting for hours on end.

Elizabeth Seton School open house

It’s that time of the year for our family again. We are school hunting! Wow, I can’t believe my panganay will graduate from preschool, and will be a gradeschooler soon. Actually, we are bent on one school at the moment, and we really hope that she passes the entrance exam. I mean, I am more than positive that she will but she still needs all the luck she can get.

This also means that should she get in, we have to tighten our already tight belts even more. Tuition and other fees are more than half of what we have been paying for the past two years. But it’s a good investment. The school has a good following and reputation over the years, and have produced quality graduates in its more than two decades of existence. Of course, it is my dream and goal to put my daughters into the best schools. Nothing like a good foundation for college. Being, ahem, a Iskolar ng Bayan, I will not settle for anything less. Sorry girls. lol.

As a side story, we have been trying to get some of her papers from her present school. Now, I don’t want to jump into conclusions but I really hope they are not sabotaging her chances to get into a good school. It’s been two weeks and they haven’t released a certified true copy of her grades yet. We made some clarifications with her adviser (tried to talk to the principal but she let the adviser talk to us first) because when they issued her progress report for the second trimester, we noticed that there had been major changes to her first term grades. I mean, who does that? Changing (lowering some of the grades in certain subjects) the first term grades in the progress report when you after you release the second term grades? Weird, that one. After that, it’s taking them a long time to release the corrected report. And we needed that so we could already schedule her entrance exam. I hope I am just being paranoid.

Anyway, so the hubby went to the open house of Elizabeth Seton School South. It should have been I, Mischa and Daddy but circumstances prevented us from attending. I had to bring Maxine to the pedia due to a week-long cough, and Mischa had make-up classes. So it was just the Dad. He said there was an orientation followed by a campus tour. He seemed very happy and satisfied afterwards, and it looks like both activities only strengthened his resolve to put his daughter there. Go anak! Again, too bad we didn’t get to submit all the required documents in time.

What I hope my daughters will become:

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Some of the facilities:

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They take pride in their open classroom set up, and assured parents that it doesn’t hinder learning of students. It is also more eco-friendly. The husband tells me it is presko. And I think this instills discipline in kids that they are more orderly, and respects others more.

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Some annoying but necessary improvements

What great timing this one project is, right when we are pooling all of our resources in preparation for my giving birth over the weekend. Sigh. But it is indeed necessary to have this emergency house improvement and shell out part of our limited funds because your kitchen sink and downstairs toilet are not functioning properly. All because of lapses of the construction firm that Crown Asia hired and outsourced the building of our home. If only expletives could kill.

Turns out that our septic tank is overflowing because it is not connected to the main drainage system of the subdivision. Tsk tsk. So here we were last weekend. Instead of doing last minute preparations for baby’s birth, and attending my last children’s party, we were stuck supervising some mini but major construction at home. There was no way to put it off. We are glad at least that the only problem we had was the slow draining of the sink and toilet, and nothing more disgusting than that. We could have had regurgitation of God knows what.

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Two years later, nightmares about dealing with them continue. I hope this is the last.

Glenda-fied

The last week was a bit horrible due to the onslaught of typhoon Glenda, but I was still thankful that her effects were more uncomfortable rather than destructive. At least in our part of Cavite. Ever since Ondoy in 2009, I get a little more tensed than usual. Long gone were the days when rains meant extra hours in huddled in bed. The threat of typhoons now meant being on guard all the time.

The good thing is that relevant Philippine agencies now have the right minds to suspend work and school as early as the day before the expected hit of typhoons. We woke up Wednesday morning (around 4:00 a.m.) when power was cut off, and the wind starting to pick up a little. Between 7:00 and 8:00 a.m., the wind was howling and whistling. Debris, G.I. sheets and other what-nots were flying haphazardly and with no definite direction. For a couple of hours or so, we just stared out the window and watch as mother nature wreaked havoc. There was not much to do anyhow as the electricity was still out. My heart went to my throat as several tegula tiles from our own roof began raining down on our front porch.

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I would have thought that these bricks, being made up of cement, are sturdier and safer than regular roofs made up of iron sheets. They were certainly heavy, but then, that’s just how strong the gale was. One hit the trunk of our car causing a dent and a back light, but at least it was just the car. I was certainly glad when the winds let up around midday. This was how our roof looked like afterwards:

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And thankfully, there was not much rain this time compared with other typhoons. When you live in the Philippines, there is always a threat of flooding every time a typhoon hits. Whew to that at least.

However, for several days after that, electricity has been intermittent. Until the weekend, we had to endure long stretches of brownouts. This also meant that water supply continuously runs out. We had to do everything by candle light, especially at night, had to store water in containers and manually flush the toilet, wash the dishes, etc., and had to fan ourselves like crazy. Makes one appreciate the invention of plumbing and not take things for granted. But as I said, I still thank the Lord that this disaster made us uncomfortable rather than in peril.

Too hot to handle

images (3)This must be the hottest summer ever in the Philippines. Everyday feels like one is a brick oven being toasted for life. It is getting too much to handle. I keep wishing I could stay in an airconditioned room all day, or be continuously plunged in cool water. But our aircon at home also seems to be not being able to keep up with the ungodly weather. I still wake up at night with my forehead or back soaking in sweat. Present weather and pregnancy hormones not a good combo at the moment. I am always feverish.

I hate to say this, but I can’t wait for the rainy season.

Seeing red

I know I shouldn’t write about this. But I have to. Just so I could vent. And that I am always reminded to be on my toes.

But this cannot happen again. You, my dear aunt, will not do that to my child again. Ever.

I was too shocked to react right away. My love for my own mother, your sister, was what kept me rooted to the spot. Clawing at you and tearing your eyes out seemed like a good idea at that time. But it would not do me any good. And it would have given my mother a heart attack, which I cannot afford.

It was almost like watching a bad movie. Yes I watched while you screamed like a banshee at my three-year old daughter for being what was expected of a three-year old–makulit. I really want to kick myself as I just watched while you humiliated my daughter to your heart’s content. You had the nerve and I let you. I am almost as guilty as you picking on somebody way below your size and age and maturity. What you did dredged up those awful memories I had of you when I was still young. How could my own mother let you trample all over us kids before?

But I will not let you do that again. Not in this lifetime. Over my dead body. You will not turn your nose up like that again.

And I thought having been sick and almost at the door of your creator has touched you and mellowed you and made you appreciative of life, love and your family. Guess I was unfortunately so wrong. You never changed. You still think you walk on water. Who else thinks this? I don’t think your own husband and children do. Baka nanay ko lang in all her blinded love for you as her older sister. Next time, hindi ko na sya kayang isipan pa pag niyurakan mo pa ang pamilya ko.

I will be more on guard. If I ever see you again.

Really. What the F.