My Mount Pulag Experience

Sunday, October 2



mt.pulag summit view


 Never in my life have a dreamt such an adventure.  At first, I wasn’t sure why I decided to join a group of mountaineers going up the 3rd highest peak in the Philippines, Mt. Pulag. This is my first climb and it’s already a major climb. I am nowhere fit with endurance for this kind of adventure, but why I decided to do this? Aside from overcoming my fear of heights, and proving to myself and the people around me that I can do this, what removed all my hesitations is the group that invited me to achieve my first summit:  Green Mountain Tribe (GMT), with our Team Leader Maia, and Mon, a good friend of mine, both encouraged me to try something I thought was out of my league.


So the adventure starts:

Mt. Pulag  via Ambangeg-Ambangeg
Bokod, Benguet

Day 0 – 23 September, 2011, Friday
We had our assembly at Victory Liner Cubao around 11pm. I met my other teammates and everyone has experience in mountaineering which made me more nervous that time. Being the only newbie, I was scared of being left out. Moreover than that, the rain began to pour that night. Oh, just the thought of the muddy trail with my heavy baggage made me think twice of my capacity to do this.

The bus ride going to Baguio was smooth, although I wasn’t able to sleep. I was seated with one of my team mates Hajji and on my other side was Gudang. I was envious of how they look, dreamy on their seats, while I am wide-awake thinking of any possibility of jumping off the window without being noticed.  Funny, eh? But that’s how I felt.

Day 1 – 24 September 2011, Saturday
We arrived at the terminal of Baguio City at around 5 to 6 am. It was cold and the fog was all over, and visibility was limited even in the town, so what else to expect in the mountains? A jeepney was waiting for us in the terminal. It was an hour or so of bumpy, zigzagging ride up the slopes when we arrived at our first stop-over, where we had our breakfast.  The name of the local restaurant is “Pinkan Jo Eatery and Videoke”. We had Nilaga and there’s also another viand called Black Bean Soup which tasted a bit like Tinola. The food was really nice, large servings, and cheap prices. After the meal, Mon helped me packed my stuffs properly. It was raining, so it’s important to waterproof everything. I was amazed how they can fit all of these things inside a bag.  I only have a few things and their bags consist of other necessities such as tents and cook sets. Mine was just clothes, foods, toiletries, water, and personal needs, but it was already full. So now I will remember to ask for a bag packing lesson before my next climb. J

We traveled again for our next destination. Although it was foggy, I had a few glimpse of the mountains, pine trees everywhere, rivers or swamps, and plots with all sorts of leafy vegetables which will remind you of a delicious salad bowl. We also passed children playing in the cold soil without any shoes, villagers having a huddle or just having some talks, farmers carrying crops on their backs. The life there was so different from what we have in Manila. It was so carefree and simple.

Another few hours of rough ride, my body was already sore and I have headache from bumping my head a few times. We arrived at our next stop DENR office, where we had an orientation. We already bought some shirts here as souvenirs.  After that short stop, another ride up to the Ranger Station where we had our lunch and our final preparations.

 From the Ranger Station we met our guide “Kuya Jersey” and some of us took porters. They were all so nice and they look approachable with smiling faces. It was about noon we started trekking. It was really cold up there, what else up high?! I was really nervous then, doubting if I am prepared for this high altitude. But then again, I should go on as the rest of my team were preparing for our ascent.  The trail was fit for one person at a time, so we’re walking in single file.  Our guide Kuya Jersey started the trail, followed by my team mates Ian, Clement, Mon, Maia, Grub (me), Page, Arlyn, Hajji, Gudang, Rox, Poch. The first few steps were okay. I thought this was easy, but afterwards the trail became muddy and slippery.  There, I saw floras and berries, pine trees and also slopes of crops. Then it became a rocky terrain with forests each side of the trail. This was just the start of a long day, and I was beginning to feel numb from the cold weather. It was hard for me to adapt to this environment, which is why I was so thankful that the itinerary we’re following was very accommodating especially for beginners like me.

I wasn’t aware of the time we reached Camp 1. There was already another group inside the small nipa hut, so we just stayed outside and made ourselves comfortable by sitting on the rocks. We had a few snacks, and there were also some locals selling bananas. My other team mates bought some, and were amazed by how sweet the red bananas were. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to ask the proper name of these bananas. Our guides, as well as our porters interact with us, sharing with our snacks, and joining our conversation. We felt welcome, and they not only took care of our belongings, but also offer us some raincoats due to the rain.


After a few minutes of rest, we began our ascent. Some of the team was way ahead of us: Hajji and Gudang were the fastest with some of our porters, followed by Ian and Clement. The middle group was Page, Arlyn, me, Mon and Maia. And lastly Rox and Poch which was our sweeper accompanied by another guide.  We started our trail again, and it became harder and harder for me. The rain started to pour, slippery trail, very cold weather, and visibility was really bad. According to my team mates, if not for the upcoming storm, there should be a good view of the grasslands, the forests and even the mountains. Unfortunately, there wasn’t any view. It was so dreadful, and the wind was starting to be cruel. I was beginning to lose hope. I was tired, and my fear of heights began to take over my will. I was just walking and walking, wanting to reach our campsite, but the more I anticipate we were near, the more I lost hope.  I was also afraid that time that my body will soon give up, but because I don’t want to be a burden to anyone, I just continue walking. There was this steep trail that really made me felt sick. Moreover than this was the cold weather, and when I try to remove my gloves, in just a few seconds my hands felt numb. I was about to ask help from Mon and Maia, but when I looked back I realized they weren’t there. Am I walking too fast or did anything happen to them? They were my closest in the group, and I lost them. The only person with me was Arlyn. I was shy to tell her I can’t go any further. And I think she realized that I was scared stiff, that’s when she started having a conversation with me. And thanks to her, after what seemed to be hours of frightening slopes, the terrain became smooth sailing again.

I didn’t realize if we passed the water source or not, because we’re so busy to reach the camp where we will spend the night. I reached my breaking point a few miles reaching the camp. When I saw Maia and Mon, I began to cry. The thought of them leaving me behind on those steep trail took over my feelings, and I poured together with the rain, sat down on the trail and don’t want to continue anymore. Our guide even offered to carry me, but I declined. But then, after I burst out everything, I continued to walk and reached the Saddle Camp. I lost track of time, but it’s beginning to get dark on the camp so I believe it’s about 6pm.

According to them, the first one who arrived the campsite was Hajji, followed by Gudang, and then the rest. I stayed in the banker, sitting there all wet and tired. I thought everything will be okay by then, but I was wrong, it was just the start of a much more weary evening.

In the saddle camp, Team 1 via Akiki Trail under Team Leader Ceejay was all dried up, and preparing their dinner, while we team 2 took our tents and organized in the campsite. It was my tent buddy Gudang, who did all the setting up of the tent. He’s really kind, he even carried my bag to the tent and gave me time to prepare myself. I was about to finish arranging my things and laying garbage bags and earth pads when I realized water was dripping from the roof of the tent. Due to that, Gudang changed our tent. I was there trying to help him out by giving light with a flashlight out of a cigarette lighter. However I try, I know I wasn’t giving much help to him, so I asked help from Mon, and Ceejay also aided us. I was again on the verge of crying, when they finished setting up the tent. How I feel so noob that time, not thinking of bringing a proper flashlight or headlamp. I stayed inside the tent and didn’t want to have dinner and socialize anymore.

It was Maia and Arlyn who prepared our dinner. Although I felt secured inside our tent, I felt hungry and had no choice but to go back to the bunker. The way from the saddle camp to the banker was just a few steps, but it’s so dark, muddy, slippery, and tall grasses all around you, and it felt eerie walking past this path (maybe just for a newbie like me).

Although the bunker has roofing, it has bare walls so it was still cold inside. Everyone was standing, and chatting. I was really numb, I just want to rest. While waiting for the meal, soup from team 1 was offered to us. I was starving then, and as I remembered it felt like it was the best food I’ve ever tasted. Menu for that night were fried pork chops with gravy and another soupy viand. After the dinner, everyone was replenished and energized. We had the chance to socialize, and had a few shots or liquor to help us from the cold, and it really did help me! I realized I was already chatting and having a fun time with the group. Lights out was 11pm, but we continued our chitchats on the saddle camp. It started to get even colder, near-freezing level. The cold started to took over me, so I decided just to sleep. I tried sleeping, but it was so hard. The flooring was so cold. I have layers of clothes, but my teeth were clattering, and it won’t stop. And this was the part I don’t remember anything or I just don’t want to remember. My selective amnesia recalled myself crying again, losing all reasons to stay, and wanting to go home. I remember Maia, Mon and Ceejay giving me encouraging words. I don’t know how long it last, but I when I thought I was beginning to fall asleep, someone was already waking us up.

Day 2 – 25 September, 2011, Sunday


The guides said we were blessed we had a clearance regardless of the weather, and we will be able to witness the sea of clouds, which was the main reason why we’re up this mountain. But it was 4am, and I didn’t think my body can still go up the summit. It was freezing cold. I was about to decide not to go up, when Gudang encouraged me. I don’t know what really gave me the courage, but I was up, climbing the summit even though some of the members decided not to go. My buddy was really patient carrying a big lamp because I don’t have a headlamp. It was still dark, the path going up was slippery, and it was really hard for me. Many times I slipped, and I want to give up. We’re amongst the slowest in the group. But when I sat down, admit defeat and I know I’m such a burden, my buddy cheered for me and patiently waited for me. Finally, we reached the summit, and that was the greatest view I ever had. I’m on the top of the mountain, and this is the third highest peak in the Philippines. I was just quiet sitting on one side of the peak, and honestly I want to cry that time because I finally did it. When I was on the campsite, I was already having second thoughts of doing this again. I can’t recall any reason why I was there, and the sea of clouds removed all my doubts.  It was worth all the hardships. It was a view words cannot describe, but the feeling it gave me was comfort I never imagined.

It was already sunrise when we descent from summit to saddle camp. The feeling of the sun gave me energy. When we were in the camp, I stayed inside the tent, and I didn’t realize I was having a good sleep. I was awakened after a few hours with some noise. It was breakfast time, but my body already felt sore I didn’t want to move. I had coffee and breakfast in bed, thanks again to my buddy. I was really lucky he’s so kind and patient. After breakfast, as much as I want to sleep, we need to get ready for our descent. I believe it was around 10:30am when we started descending. The sun was up so the view that we weren’t able to see during our ascent was all around us. The scene was amazing, the landscape, grasslands, and mountains. Although I was much more cautious that time because I have a clear view of down below if I stumbled and fall. But all over, it was better than having limited visibility and cold weather.

We were already running out of water when we reached the water source. It was cold water, refreshing and sweet. This is “real mineral water”, water we will never have in Manila. If I can just take galloons of it with me I would do it, but anyway a bottle of it was enough baggage for me. J

After that was hours of trekking again. Good thing our guide was so nice he made me a wooden stick to help me on our way down. It was slippery, and he said he saw me crying on our way up the other day, that’s why he made one for me. I was embarrassed, but all of those memories were laughing matters now. 

We passed Camp 1, but we didn’t stay there. We continued our descent, and after hours of walking, and my neck started to hurt because I kept looking for signs of our team mates ahead of us, finally we arrived at the Ranger Station. We were the last ones who arrived, and luckily we were already there when the rain begun to pour. Our transportation going to Baguio City was already there waiting for us. We bid our goodbyes to our guides and porters. These villagers were really accommodating, and helpful. I was so grateful they were there to help us.

The jeepney ride from the Ranger Station to our next stop was one hell of an experience. My body was already sore, and the bumpy ride made me dizzy. We had our first stop, and had our lunch which was soupy native chicken. We also had the chance to clean up there.  Afterwards was another long, dizzy ride from there up to the DENR office, where we need to log out. As I think about it, the jeepney ride was way harder than the climb. Many of us got sick. It was one hell of a ride.

We had another stop over at the village restaurant, just to take some rest from the ride and bathroom breaks, and then we continued travelling all the way to Baguio City. I think it was already 9-10pm when we reached Baguio.  This time, I already felt my body aching. I can’t walk, and  bruises started to appear in my body.

We had our dinner at a nearby restaurant, and then another 5 hours trip from Baguio to Manila. I was asleep most of the journey going home.

Day 3 – 26 September, 2011, Monday
We reached Manila around 6am. There was an upcoming typhoon, and we’re lucky we were finally home before it poured.

                                 ………………………………………………………………………………………………………........

Even though it was really tiring, I got sick and the muscles all over my body aching, accomplishing my first mountain climb Mt. Pulag was something I’m so proud of. This was something I never fantasize nor intend to try, but here I am writing my first experience. This climb made me discover the strengths, I never thought I have; made me realized that God created so many wonders I should learn more; and most of all this adventure gave me new a family: “Green Mountain Tribe”.

Green Mountain Tribe

OKTOGON FUSION RESTAURANT

Sunday, March 28



Leipziger Platz 10, Berlin 10117

Nowadays, fusion restaurants are very popular. Many tourist and travelers around the world prefer eating in diners of this kind. Fusion which literally means blending or combination of two styles meant the same in the food world. The idea of fusion cooking is born mainly because many people love to the travel so the combination of culinary flavors and techniques of eastern and western dishes are well appreciated by diners.

In Berlin, one of the most sought after eating place is the Octogon Fusion Restaurant. This is a restaurant known for its exotic and delicious cuisines from around the world. It is the first and singular fusion restaurant in the place. You will not only notice the combination of styles in the food menu but also in the architectural design of the building. The place is set with the stunning view of the sky in Potsdamer Platz. The decorations which are deep-red will remind you of Asian arts while the contoured lay-out is very German in manner. The ambiance of the restaurant and the taste of food is an experience like you’re travelling around the globe.

Octogon Fusion Restaurant serves food of high quality. The fusion of food can be quickly noticed in the menu. A very exquisite dish is the “Dim Sum with Maultasche” or what German folks call Swabian ravioli filled with cheese and spinach or veal cutlets that are roasted to perfection with sautéed sweet potato and wild mushrooms. Other foods listed in the menu are seasonal creations and may vary from to time to time. Dishes are not only world-wide in taste but also the wine. Octogon Fusion Restaurant has an impressive selection of drinks from all around the world. You can choose from eighty kinds of wine.

Octogon Fusion Restaurant is a place tourist and even ordinary people must visit, because this place will make you feel that you’ve traveled the world.



Where to get your Babies' Needs?!

Saturday, March 6

For parents who are searching for a great online store, where they can avail all babies' needs in one stop and offers great buys, baby product deal is the website where you will surely find what you are looking for.

DVD Home Cinema

Wednesday, February 3

Ever dreamed of having your own home cinema? Almost every home wants to have one, but cannot afford the luxurious price. Now, you can have your own dvd home cinema in affordable prices, yet with quality.

Digital TV Recorders

In the coming years, all television services will be switched to digital. Although this will be implemented throughout UK, citizens should need not to worry because there is no need to avail a new television. You just need digital tv recorders to enjoy your favorite shows.

A General View of Hotels in London

Wednesday, January 27

Travelling in London may require a large expenditure but many tourists would agree that visiting the place is worthwhile. The city offers a vast range of tourist attractions which is why you can find a wide selection of hotels, guest accommodations and suites that varies according to your needs. Hotels in London can be found in different locations all over the city whether you’re in Hyde Park, Marble Arch, Croydon, Wimbledon or Paddington, be assured that you can easily locate a hotel in accordance with you’re requirements.

If budget is the case there are guaranteed cheap and mid-range hotels in London in competitive prices ranging from £50 to £100 per night. These kinds of hotels give the best deals and last-minute offers that present great value for your money. Even though some requires refurbishment, don’t worry because a low rate hotel doesn’t mean that the establishment lacks comfort and cleanliness. On the other hand, if you’re after elegancy and charmingly decorated hotels, Luxury hotels will suit your wants. These are often found in great locations and expect that the place is thoroughly arranged and equipped with lifts and concierge desks all over the place. Price varies but most hotels charge over £150 per night. Another type of hotel is the Fiver-Star Hotels which are internationally recognized. Features include quality of the highest standard and enhanced services with lavishly designed rooms. Still a tourist should be aware of hotels evaluating their place independently and award themselves star ratings because surprisingly there is really no required standard in rating a hotel but in Britain there is still AA and VisitBritain, two well-known organizations in assessing accommodations and quality of hotels in London. There are also what they call Boutique Hotels here in London, these are the types of hotel styled individually and traditionally. Staying in Boutique Hotels is quite an experience like you’re just in the comforts of your own home and most are special and exclusive only. Contrary to this, there are Hip-Styled Hotels with contemporary, stylish and gives a trendy look and feel. In London you can also find Corporate Hotels that are business styled and with facilities for conference where large numbers of people can stay. There are also Airport Hotels that are available if you are searching for a place to stay with easy entry and exits within the area.

These are just some of the types of hotels in London that is in accordance to any traveler’s needs and wants. Before lodging in a hotel it is better to be knowledgeable about the price range, proximity to tourist spots and ratings of the establishment. These are important information that will ensure a good London visit.

Shazzebeth's Creations November Giveaway

Monday, November 2

October ended yet Shazzabeth is starting a new contest that runs the whole month of November... So guys join now because she's giving away awesome price! Full details here: Shazzabeth's Creation


"Price"
$40.00 to splurge on her Etsy Store

"Contest runs til Dec. 1st so join now!"

The Brickhouse

Wednesday, October 28


The Old Truman Brewery, Brick Lane, London E1 6RU

Renowned for its delicious modern British cuisine, The Brickhouse is a favorite amongst Londoners. The name of the restaurant is inspired by the location which is alongside houses made of blocks of clay. The interior of the restaurant is an idea based on 1930’s clubs with three-floors. Downstairs is a simple dining area with customary tables and private booths while the other floor is a cool bar area. What makes this restaurant exceptional can be found on the top level, where four flush beds are set with dim lightings that creates a sophisticated mood. Abstract sculptures and arts stand-out in this place and add a warm feeling in the restaurant. Anyone will be amazed by the cozy setting of the place where friends and family can hang out and relax after a delicious meal.



The atmosphere of the restaurant attracts young, cool crowd. The place offers incomparable experience pairing eclectic dishes and an array of alternative performances. Some are very interesting acts that is an embodiment of a unique place.



The Brickhouse offers six course options ranging at £35 to £45. They also offer tasting menus and special menus designed for vegetarians. The dishes provided are indulging and distinctive in taste. One particular starter dish that a diner should try is a fine plate of fresh tuna with wasabi foam, the delicate taste of the fish adds well with the wasabi spice. For main dishes they offer a wide variety of meat and fish dishes. Some of the must tries are “Confit Duck Croquets” served with pesto and chutney, “Pan-fried Salmon” with Fennel, Cress and White Wine Veloute. Polish off these meals with a perfect selection of desserts such as “Cappuccino Crème Brulee” and a delicate pudding of Summer Fruits, served with Champagne Jelly and Mascarpone Ice Cream. The drinks here is also a must try. They have wide selection of cocktail-lists and suits everyone’s taste and budget.

If you’re into something different and want a distinctive experience, then The Brickhouse is a perfect choice. The restaurant will surely give anyone a very interesting experience that diners certainly won’t forget.

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photo credits:
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2307/1810651322_8183b426b4.jpg
http://www.cascadeae.com/Images/brickhouse.jpg 

http://www.bunrab.com/dailyfeed/dailyfeed_images_aug-06/df06_08-02_roll.jpg

The Empress Jewel Giveaway!

Tuesday, October 27

Blog hopping again for contest and here I joined another one.. The giveaway was from Jenn of The Empress Jewelry and hosted by The Sunshine Studio. Full interview about the jewel maker and contest details here: The Sunshine Studio


"Price"
Silver Moon Pendant Earrings

"Contest ends on Nov. 1st, so join now"

Just a thought!

Monday, October 26

I am planning to change my blog lay-out.. I'm considering a three-columned template! I also want to add smilies in my comment form but not yet able to learn how.. I also want to add some follow me buttons with subscribe through email, facebook button, twitter follow me button.. I'm planning so much but not getting started..

I hope one day I can make all this work..
Have any suggestions?!


Sunday, October 2

My Mount Pulag Experience

Posted by iya at 7:45 AM 0 comments


mt.pulag summit view


 Never in my life have a dreamt such an adventure.  At first, I wasn’t sure why I decided to join a group of mountaineers going up the 3rd highest peak in the Philippines, Mt. Pulag. This is my first climb and it’s already a major climb. I am nowhere fit with endurance for this kind of adventure, but why I decided to do this? Aside from overcoming my fear of heights, and proving to myself and the people around me that I can do this, what removed all my hesitations is the group that invited me to achieve my first summit:  Green Mountain Tribe (GMT), with our Team Leader Maia, and Mon, a good friend of mine, both encouraged me to try something I thought was out of my league.


So the adventure starts:

Mt. Pulag  via Ambangeg-Ambangeg
Bokod, Benguet

Day 0 – 23 September, 2011, Friday
We had our assembly at Victory Liner Cubao around 11pm. I met my other teammates and everyone has experience in mountaineering which made me more nervous that time. Being the only newbie, I was scared of being left out. Moreover than that, the rain began to pour that night. Oh, just the thought of the muddy trail with my heavy baggage made me think twice of my capacity to do this.

The bus ride going to Baguio was smooth, although I wasn’t able to sleep. I was seated with one of my team mates Hajji and on my other side was Gudang. I was envious of how they look, dreamy on their seats, while I am wide-awake thinking of any possibility of jumping off the window without being noticed.  Funny, eh? But that’s how I felt.

Day 1 – 24 September 2011, Saturday
We arrived at the terminal of Baguio City at around 5 to 6 am. It was cold and the fog was all over, and visibility was limited even in the town, so what else to expect in the mountains? A jeepney was waiting for us in the terminal. It was an hour or so of bumpy, zigzagging ride up the slopes when we arrived at our first stop-over, where we had our breakfast.  The name of the local restaurant is “Pinkan Jo Eatery and Videoke”. We had Nilaga and there’s also another viand called Black Bean Soup which tasted a bit like Tinola. The food was really nice, large servings, and cheap prices. After the meal, Mon helped me packed my stuffs properly. It was raining, so it’s important to waterproof everything. I was amazed how they can fit all of these things inside a bag.  I only have a few things and their bags consist of other necessities such as tents and cook sets. Mine was just clothes, foods, toiletries, water, and personal needs, but it was already full. So now I will remember to ask for a bag packing lesson before my next climb. J

We traveled again for our next destination. Although it was foggy, I had a few glimpse of the mountains, pine trees everywhere, rivers or swamps, and plots with all sorts of leafy vegetables which will remind you of a delicious salad bowl. We also passed children playing in the cold soil without any shoes, villagers having a huddle or just having some talks, farmers carrying crops on their backs. The life there was so different from what we have in Manila. It was so carefree and simple.

Another few hours of rough ride, my body was already sore and I have headache from bumping my head a few times. We arrived at our next stop DENR office, where we had an orientation. We already bought some shirts here as souvenirs.  After that short stop, another ride up to the Ranger Station where we had our lunch and our final preparations.

 From the Ranger Station we met our guide “Kuya Jersey” and some of us took porters. They were all so nice and they look approachable with smiling faces. It was about noon we started trekking. It was really cold up there, what else up high?! I was really nervous then, doubting if I am prepared for this high altitude. But then again, I should go on as the rest of my team were preparing for our ascent.  The trail was fit for one person at a time, so we’re walking in single file.  Our guide Kuya Jersey started the trail, followed by my team mates Ian, Clement, Mon, Maia, Grub (me), Page, Arlyn, Hajji, Gudang, Rox, Poch. The first few steps were okay. I thought this was easy, but afterwards the trail became muddy and slippery.  There, I saw floras and berries, pine trees and also slopes of crops. Then it became a rocky terrain with forests each side of the trail. This was just the start of a long day, and I was beginning to feel numb from the cold weather. It was hard for me to adapt to this environment, which is why I was so thankful that the itinerary we’re following was very accommodating especially for beginners like me.

I wasn’t aware of the time we reached Camp 1. There was already another group inside the small nipa hut, so we just stayed outside and made ourselves comfortable by sitting on the rocks. We had a few snacks, and there were also some locals selling bananas. My other team mates bought some, and were amazed by how sweet the red bananas were. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to ask the proper name of these bananas. Our guides, as well as our porters interact with us, sharing with our snacks, and joining our conversation. We felt welcome, and they not only took care of our belongings, but also offer us some raincoats due to the rain.


After a few minutes of rest, we began our ascent. Some of the team was way ahead of us: Hajji and Gudang were the fastest with some of our porters, followed by Ian and Clement. The middle group was Page, Arlyn, me, Mon and Maia. And lastly Rox and Poch which was our sweeper accompanied by another guide.  We started our trail again, and it became harder and harder for me. The rain started to pour, slippery trail, very cold weather, and visibility was really bad. According to my team mates, if not for the upcoming storm, there should be a good view of the grasslands, the forests and even the mountains. Unfortunately, there wasn’t any view. It was so dreadful, and the wind was starting to be cruel. I was beginning to lose hope. I was tired, and my fear of heights began to take over my will. I was just walking and walking, wanting to reach our campsite, but the more I anticipate we were near, the more I lost hope.  I was also afraid that time that my body will soon give up, but because I don’t want to be a burden to anyone, I just continue walking. There was this steep trail that really made me felt sick. Moreover than this was the cold weather, and when I try to remove my gloves, in just a few seconds my hands felt numb. I was about to ask help from Mon and Maia, but when I looked back I realized they weren’t there. Am I walking too fast or did anything happen to them? They were my closest in the group, and I lost them. The only person with me was Arlyn. I was shy to tell her I can’t go any further. And I think she realized that I was scared stiff, that’s when she started having a conversation with me. And thanks to her, after what seemed to be hours of frightening slopes, the terrain became smooth sailing again.

I didn’t realize if we passed the water source or not, because we’re so busy to reach the camp where we will spend the night. I reached my breaking point a few miles reaching the camp. When I saw Maia and Mon, I began to cry. The thought of them leaving me behind on those steep trail took over my feelings, and I poured together with the rain, sat down on the trail and don’t want to continue anymore. Our guide even offered to carry me, but I declined. But then, after I burst out everything, I continued to walk and reached the Saddle Camp. I lost track of time, but it’s beginning to get dark on the camp so I believe it’s about 6pm.

According to them, the first one who arrived the campsite was Hajji, followed by Gudang, and then the rest. I stayed in the banker, sitting there all wet and tired. I thought everything will be okay by then, but I was wrong, it was just the start of a much more weary evening.

In the saddle camp, Team 1 via Akiki Trail under Team Leader Ceejay was all dried up, and preparing their dinner, while we team 2 took our tents and organized in the campsite. It was my tent buddy Gudang, who did all the setting up of the tent. He’s really kind, he even carried my bag to the tent and gave me time to prepare myself. I was about to finish arranging my things and laying garbage bags and earth pads when I realized water was dripping from the roof of the tent. Due to that, Gudang changed our tent. I was there trying to help him out by giving light with a flashlight out of a cigarette lighter. However I try, I know I wasn’t giving much help to him, so I asked help from Mon, and Ceejay also aided us. I was again on the verge of crying, when they finished setting up the tent. How I feel so noob that time, not thinking of bringing a proper flashlight or headlamp. I stayed inside the tent and didn’t want to have dinner and socialize anymore.

It was Maia and Arlyn who prepared our dinner. Although I felt secured inside our tent, I felt hungry and had no choice but to go back to the bunker. The way from the saddle camp to the banker was just a few steps, but it’s so dark, muddy, slippery, and tall grasses all around you, and it felt eerie walking past this path (maybe just for a newbie like me).

Although the bunker has roofing, it has bare walls so it was still cold inside. Everyone was standing, and chatting. I was really numb, I just want to rest. While waiting for the meal, soup from team 1 was offered to us. I was starving then, and as I remembered it felt like it was the best food I’ve ever tasted. Menu for that night were fried pork chops with gravy and another soupy viand. After the dinner, everyone was replenished and energized. We had the chance to socialize, and had a few shots or liquor to help us from the cold, and it really did help me! I realized I was already chatting and having a fun time with the group. Lights out was 11pm, but we continued our chitchats on the saddle camp. It started to get even colder, near-freezing level. The cold started to took over me, so I decided just to sleep. I tried sleeping, but it was so hard. The flooring was so cold. I have layers of clothes, but my teeth were clattering, and it won’t stop. And this was the part I don’t remember anything or I just don’t want to remember. My selective amnesia recalled myself crying again, losing all reasons to stay, and wanting to go home. I remember Maia, Mon and Ceejay giving me encouraging words. I don’t know how long it last, but I when I thought I was beginning to fall asleep, someone was already waking us up.

Day 2 – 25 September, 2011, Sunday


The guides said we were blessed we had a clearance regardless of the weather, and we will be able to witness the sea of clouds, which was the main reason why we’re up this mountain. But it was 4am, and I didn’t think my body can still go up the summit. It was freezing cold. I was about to decide not to go up, when Gudang encouraged me. I don’t know what really gave me the courage, but I was up, climbing the summit even though some of the members decided not to go. My buddy was really patient carrying a big lamp because I don’t have a headlamp. It was still dark, the path going up was slippery, and it was really hard for me. Many times I slipped, and I want to give up. We’re amongst the slowest in the group. But when I sat down, admit defeat and I know I’m such a burden, my buddy cheered for me and patiently waited for me. Finally, we reached the summit, and that was the greatest view I ever had. I’m on the top of the mountain, and this is the third highest peak in the Philippines. I was just quiet sitting on one side of the peak, and honestly I want to cry that time because I finally did it. When I was on the campsite, I was already having second thoughts of doing this again. I can’t recall any reason why I was there, and the sea of clouds removed all my doubts.  It was worth all the hardships. It was a view words cannot describe, but the feeling it gave me was comfort I never imagined.

It was already sunrise when we descent from summit to saddle camp. The feeling of the sun gave me energy. When we were in the camp, I stayed inside the tent, and I didn’t realize I was having a good sleep. I was awakened after a few hours with some noise. It was breakfast time, but my body already felt sore I didn’t want to move. I had coffee and breakfast in bed, thanks again to my buddy. I was really lucky he’s so kind and patient. After breakfast, as much as I want to sleep, we need to get ready for our descent. I believe it was around 10:30am when we started descending. The sun was up so the view that we weren’t able to see during our ascent was all around us. The scene was amazing, the landscape, grasslands, and mountains. Although I was much more cautious that time because I have a clear view of down below if I stumbled and fall. But all over, it was better than having limited visibility and cold weather.

We were already running out of water when we reached the water source. It was cold water, refreshing and sweet. This is “real mineral water”, water we will never have in Manila. If I can just take galloons of it with me I would do it, but anyway a bottle of it was enough baggage for me. J

After that was hours of trekking again. Good thing our guide was so nice he made me a wooden stick to help me on our way down. It was slippery, and he said he saw me crying on our way up the other day, that’s why he made one for me. I was embarrassed, but all of those memories were laughing matters now. 

We passed Camp 1, but we didn’t stay there. We continued our descent, and after hours of walking, and my neck started to hurt because I kept looking for signs of our team mates ahead of us, finally we arrived at the Ranger Station. We were the last ones who arrived, and luckily we were already there when the rain begun to pour. Our transportation going to Baguio City was already there waiting for us. We bid our goodbyes to our guides and porters. These villagers were really accommodating, and helpful. I was so grateful they were there to help us.

The jeepney ride from the Ranger Station to our next stop was one hell of an experience. My body was already sore, and the bumpy ride made me dizzy. We had our first stop, and had our lunch which was soupy native chicken. We also had the chance to clean up there.  Afterwards was another long, dizzy ride from there up to the DENR office, where we need to log out. As I think about it, the jeepney ride was way harder than the climb. Many of us got sick. It was one hell of a ride.

We had another stop over at the village restaurant, just to take some rest from the ride and bathroom breaks, and then we continued travelling all the way to Baguio City. I think it was already 9-10pm when we reached Baguio.  This time, I already felt my body aching. I can’t walk, and  bruises started to appear in my body.

We had our dinner at a nearby restaurant, and then another 5 hours trip from Baguio to Manila. I was asleep most of the journey going home.

Day 3 – 26 September, 2011, Monday
We reached Manila around 6am. There was an upcoming typhoon, and we’re lucky we were finally home before it poured.

                                 ………………………………………………………………………………………………………........

Even though it was really tiring, I got sick and the muscles all over my body aching, accomplishing my first mountain climb Mt. Pulag was something I’m so proud of. This was something I never fantasize nor intend to try, but here I am writing my first experience. This climb made me discover the strengths, I never thought I have; made me realized that God created so many wonders I should learn more; and most of all this adventure gave me new a family: “Green Mountain Tribe”.

Green Mountain Tribe

Sunday, March 28

OKTOGON FUSION RESTAURANT

Posted by iya at 4:25 AM 4 comments


Leipziger Platz 10, Berlin 10117

Nowadays, fusion restaurants are very popular. Many tourist and travelers around the world prefer eating in diners of this kind. Fusion which literally means blending or combination of two styles meant the same in the food world. The idea of fusion cooking is born mainly because many people love to the travel so the combination of culinary flavors and techniques of eastern and western dishes are well appreciated by diners.

In Berlin, one of the most sought after eating place is the Octogon Fusion Restaurant. This is a restaurant known for its exotic and delicious cuisines from around the world. It is the first and singular fusion restaurant in the place. You will not only notice the combination of styles in the food menu but also in the architectural design of the building. The place is set with the stunning view of the sky in Potsdamer Platz. The decorations which are deep-red will remind you of Asian arts while the contoured lay-out is very German in manner. The ambiance of the restaurant and the taste of food is an experience like you’re travelling around the globe.

Octogon Fusion Restaurant serves food of high quality. The fusion of food can be quickly noticed in the menu. A very exquisite dish is the “Dim Sum with Maultasche” or what German folks call Swabian ravioli filled with cheese and spinach or veal cutlets that are roasted to perfection with sautéed sweet potato and wild mushrooms. Other foods listed in the menu are seasonal creations and may vary from to time to time. Dishes are not only world-wide in taste but also the wine. Octogon Fusion Restaurant has an impressive selection of drinks from all around the world. You can choose from eighty kinds of wine.

Octogon Fusion Restaurant is a place tourist and even ordinary people must visit, because this place will make you feel that you’ve traveled the world.



Saturday, March 6

Where to get your Babies' Needs?!

Posted by iya at 10:18 PM 2 comments
For parents who are searching for a great online store, where they can avail all babies' needs in one stop and offers great buys, baby product deal is the website where you will surely find what you are looking for.

Wednesday, February 3

DVD Home Cinema

Posted by iya at 11:52 PM 2 comments
Ever dreamed of having your own home cinema? Almost every home wants to have one, but cannot afford the luxurious price. Now, you can have your own dvd home cinema in affordable prices, yet with quality.

Digital TV Recorders

Posted by iya at 11:34 PM 1 comments
In the coming years, all television services will be switched to digital. Although this will be implemented throughout UK, citizens should need not to worry because there is no need to avail a new television. You just need digital tv recorders to enjoy your favorite shows.

Wednesday, January 27

A General View of Hotels in London

Posted by iya at 1:39 AM 3 comments
Travelling in London may require a large expenditure but many tourists would agree that visiting the place is worthwhile. The city offers a vast range of tourist attractions which is why you can find a wide selection of hotels, guest accommodations and suites that varies according to your needs. Hotels in London can be found in different locations all over the city whether you’re in Hyde Park, Marble Arch, Croydon, Wimbledon or Paddington, be assured that you can easily locate a hotel in accordance with you’re requirements.

If budget is the case there are guaranteed cheap and mid-range hotels in London in competitive prices ranging from £50 to £100 per night. These kinds of hotels give the best deals and last-minute offers that present great value for your money. Even though some requires refurbishment, don’t worry because a low rate hotel doesn’t mean that the establishment lacks comfort and cleanliness. On the other hand, if you’re after elegancy and charmingly decorated hotels, Luxury hotels will suit your wants. These are often found in great locations and expect that the place is thoroughly arranged and equipped with lifts and concierge desks all over the place. Price varies but most hotels charge over £150 per night. Another type of hotel is the Fiver-Star Hotels which are internationally recognized. Features include quality of the highest standard and enhanced services with lavishly designed rooms. Still a tourist should be aware of hotels evaluating their place independently and award themselves star ratings because surprisingly there is really no required standard in rating a hotel but in Britain there is still AA and VisitBritain, two well-known organizations in assessing accommodations and quality of hotels in London. There are also what they call Boutique Hotels here in London, these are the types of hotel styled individually and traditionally. Staying in Boutique Hotels is quite an experience like you’re just in the comforts of your own home and most are special and exclusive only. Contrary to this, there are Hip-Styled Hotels with contemporary, stylish and gives a trendy look and feel. In London you can also find Corporate Hotels that are business styled and with facilities for conference where large numbers of people can stay. There are also Airport Hotels that are available if you are searching for a place to stay with easy entry and exits within the area.

These are just some of the types of hotels in London that is in accordance to any traveler’s needs and wants. Before lodging in a hotel it is better to be knowledgeable about the price range, proximity to tourist spots and ratings of the establishment. These are important information that will ensure a good London visit.

Monday, November 2

Shazzebeth's Creations November Giveaway

Posted by iya at 6:00 AM 4 comments
October ended yet Shazzabeth is starting a new contest that runs the whole month of November... So guys join now because she's giving away awesome price! Full details here: Shazzabeth's Creation


"Price"
$40.00 to splurge on her Etsy Store

"Contest runs til Dec. 1st so join now!"

Wednesday, October 28

The Brickhouse

Posted by iya at 7:10 AM 6 comments

The Old Truman Brewery, Brick Lane, London E1 6RU

Renowned for its delicious modern British cuisine, The Brickhouse is a favorite amongst Londoners. The name of the restaurant is inspired by the location which is alongside houses made of blocks of clay. The interior of the restaurant is an idea based on 1930’s clubs with three-floors. Downstairs is a simple dining area with customary tables and private booths while the other floor is a cool bar area. What makes this restaurant exceptional can be found on the top level, where four flush beds are set with dim lightings that creates a sophisticated mood. Abstract sculptures and arts stand-out in this place and add a warm feeling in the restaurant. Anyone will be amazed by the cozy setting of the place where friends and family can hang out and relax after a delicious meal.



The atmosphere of the restaurant attracts young, cool crowd. The place offers incomparable experience pairing eclectic dishes and an array of alternative performances. Some are very interesting acts that is an embodiment of a unique place.



The Brickhouse offers six course options ranging at £35 to £45. They also offer tasting menus and special menus designed for vegetarians. The dishes provided are indulging and distinctive in taste. One particular starter dish that a diner should try is a fine plate of fresh tuna with wasabi foam, the delicate taste of the fish adds well with the wasabi spice. For main dishes they offer a wide variety of meat and fish dishes. Some of the must tries are “Confit Duck Croquets” served with pesto and chutney, “Pan-fried Salmon” with Fennel, Cress and White Wine Veloute. Polish off these meals with a perfect selection of desserts such as “Cappuccino Crème Brulee” and a delicate pudding of Summer Fruits, served with Champagne Jelly and Mascarpone Ice Cream. The drinks here is also a must try. They have wide selection of cocktail-lists and suits everyone’s taste and budget.

If you’re into something different and want a distinctive experience, then The Brickhouse is a perfect choice. The restaurant will surely give anyone a very interesting experience that diners certainly won’t forget.

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photo credits:
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2307/1810651322_8183b426b4.jpg
http://www.cascadeae.com/Images/brickhouse.jpg 

http://www.bunrab.com/dailyfeed/dailyfeed_images_aug-06/df06_08-02_roll.jpg

Tuesday, October 27

The Empress Jewel Giveaway!

Posted by iya at 8:22 AM 1 comments
Blog hopping again for contest and here I joined another one.. The giveaway was from Jenn of The Empress Jewelry and hosted by The Sunshine Studio. Full interview about the jewel maker and contest details here: The Sunshine Studio


"Price"
Silver Moon Pendant Earrings

"Contest ends on Nov. 1st, so join now"

Monday, October 26

Just a thought!

Posted by iya at 7:58 AM 2 comments
I am planning to change my blog lay-out.. I'm considering a three-columned template! I also want to add smilies in my comment form but not yet able to learn how.. I also want to add some follow me buttons with subscribe through email, facebook button, twitter follow me button.. I'm planning so much but not getting started..

I hope one day I can make all this work..
Have any suggestions?!