Seat At The Table

I found this very informative talk/video encouraging, stimulating and hopeful in almost equal parts. While the responsibility lies largely on this generation, it helps paint a brighter future if we start getting our act together as a global community and start working together instead of in silos, enormous challenges in themselves but not impossible. Which other generation has had the privilege to solve the world’s problems with all the information we need at our fingertips?

Another video I found highly informative and inspiring is this ted talk by Simon Anholt. It’s encouraging to know that about 10% of the world’s population share the same values/perspective as global citizens/globalists. That can make up a country with the 3rd highest population in the world. If you think in these terms, know that you are not alone in worrying about our future and where the world is headed.

Let’s Go On A Road Trip

Hello! It’s been awhile since we got together for coffee. Let’s change things up a bit and go on a road trip, grab coffee on the way, shall we? Let’s go.

First early Christmas decor spotted. No halloween things spotted so I guess that’s off the table for most people.

Phew! Didn’t really expect to hit some traffic this early. The skies are a bit gray but I don’t think it will rain, not soon anyway. First order of business: let’s get you and me some coffee in our system.

View of Taal Volcano
More of Taal Volcano, a unique and dangerous beauty found in the south of Manila, Philippines, arguably the smallest active complex supervolcano on the planet. Taal lake partially covers its caldera or crater.
And more. First road trip and nature walk in months!
All squared up for kindasquare

I ordered a latte for myself and a cappuccino for you. These cakes/pastries are making my mouth water. I’ll let you pick this time.

A square cake from a bistro
Burnt Ube (water yam/winged yam/purple sweet potato among its names) Cheesecake goes really well with brewed coffee.
Hubs been craving this for days: apple tart from Rowena’s.
How about some chocolate crinkles?
Sylvannas, anyone?

I haven’t told you, one of the reasons we’re here is to do a site survey. We’re building our first house over there, leaving the busy city and trading condo living for this, maybe for good. Work and business are lining up especially these past months such that we can all work remotely with the teams and hold most meetings online. We’ll probably just go back to the city once or twice a month with the processes we put in place, fingers crossed. I just know I can get more writing done here, go for a hike every week and swim in the lake or nearby beach any time we fancy. And hubs can finally have some space for a workshop for his furniture projects. Having this to look forward to definitely makes the long hours and everything else thrown our way this year more bearable.

How about you, what gets you going/how do you pick yourself up especially on days when getting up seems harder, you feel sluggish or too crazy to work? Do you get those days, too?

Let’s drop by the garden near the fruit stands and souvenir shops we wanted to check out last time. Don’t forget to wear both face masks and shield as some shops don’t let people in without both on. I’m picking a random spotify playlist on. Any rock out song you have in mind for the drive back? Ooh, these are good ones.

Thanks for playing along. You got some nice set of pipes, my friend. Bye for now. Take care and until out next road trip.

The coffee share is hosted over on Eclectic AlliHere’s the link to join in. Also linking to Kinda Square for the cakes and Taal volcano shots.

SoCS – Spell It Out For Me

I used to be really good at spelling, and I credit it to a very good memory I had when I was young. My teachers/school didn’t waste any time taking advantage of this and had me join in spelling/quiz bees left and right. There was even a time when they had me join a talent contest as a replacement for someone who couldn’t make it then (probably chickened out?) because I knew too many songs or didn’t need to practice for a song number I had to perform in just a few hours after that forced recruitment. My aunt (the only one who probably knew this about me) who had several businesses back then benefited from this by having me memorize her phone books then asking me for those numbers when she needed them, or having me study some phrases in other languages then showing me off to her foreign clients by having me join their small talk before meetings. My ‘party trick’ was reciting story books verbatim after reading them just a few times.

This sharp memory quickly deteriorated, as I recall, after I had an operation for a benign cyst they found on my left wrist. Was it the general anesthesia that knocked me out during operation? Or perhaps the effect of several accidents like falling down a flight of stairs as a kid? In hindsight, had I known (though not sure) that that would be the trade off, I would have gladly kept the cyst (since it didn’t really bother me or people I know, except for my aunt) and/or skipped on the strong meds I had to take back then for injuries from those accidents.

After the operation, I remember losing this ability to memorize pages of numbers on a phone book after a couple of tries/read throughs. These days, I have such a poor memory compared to when I was a kid, I have to rely on a dictionary/thesaurus (shift +f7 for Microsoft Office or its equivalent in Mac) a lot for correct spelling, or on notes or photos for important details. Pretty normal stuff but when I remember what I can do pre-operation/accidents, I can’t help but ponder the possibilities of having this sort of mini-superpower.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com
Photo by Kaboompics .com on Pexels.com
It was especially handy on math tests.. Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

This post is part of SoCS and FOWC

Quarantine Watch List Pt. 2

It’s been a little over seven months since self-isolation and while I have adjusted and been a lot more productive now than in the first three months, hubby and I have made a habit of bonding/decompressing over a nice meal, dessert or drinks while watching a movie, docu or series, some days. Here are some recommendations to add to the first list I posted months back here. This time around we decided to give Amazon Prime and Apple TV a shot.

From Netflix:

  1. Cobra Kai
  2. Ratched
  3. Away
  4. The Old Guard
  5. Snowpiercer
  6. Anna
  7. To The Lake (Russian)
  8. Enola Holmes
  9. The Social Dilemma

And these (on days when you just want something really light and/or distracting enough), if you haven’t already:

  1. Umbrella Academy (very interesting plot and well placed twists!)
  2. iZombie
  3. Santa Clarita Diet
  4. Somebody Feed Phil
  5. Ready Player One
  6. Jane The Virgin
  7. Anne with an ‘E’
  8. Warrior Nun
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

From Amazon Prime:

  1. Jack Ryan
  2. Treadstone
  3. James May Our Man in Japan

If you haven’t already:

  1. Upload
  2. Covert Affairs

From Apple TV (coming soon, still checking out a few)

Photo by JESHOOTS.com on Pexels.com

I know, that’s a lot of shows/movies and too much screen time. Enough for a decade or so. Sigh. Anyway hope you find this list helpful. Feel free to make suggestions in the comments and I’ll check some of them on the weekends 😉😉

Happy Breaks and A Vote From a Kid

I’ve mentioned it before in a few other posts that I rarely check facebook nowadays and if I do, it’s only for a few minutes. I did today and found some happy updates/posts. First is an engagement announcement by my cousin c/o his new fiancé. She tagged it as something beautiful in 2020. Indeed 😊. Another happy couple I know got married recently after being together for about 10 years. I guess the challenges this year have made minds clearer on important/urgent things in life or at least, some direction we want to take.

Guess I’m not deleting or deactivating Facebook, at least not yet. Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Another post I saw was from NZ’s PM Jacinda Ardern. She got a letter from a 6 year-old kid expressing how upset s/he was to learn that s/he can’t vote yet. The kid went ahead and created his/her own ballot paper. While I’d rather kids not grow up too fast and carry the world’s problems on their shoulders too soon, It is amazing to inspire them to be involved in society this early, to engage in matters than concern the larger community. That’s worthy of praise and quite an accomplishment, one that I imagine she (NZ’s beloved PM) didn’t plan to do but managed to accomplish anyway.

Here’s the link to the post. I hope it cheers you up as well.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com
Photo by Khaled Akacha on Pexels.com

This post is part of Happy Tuesday and Awww Monday.

Bread Talk

This week, Dr. Tanya’s 5 Things is all about bread. I had a hard time picking just five, though. What can I say, I’m still a foodie, pandemic or not.

Banana bread

Photo by Mimi Moromisato on Pexels.com

Here’s another one.

Photo by Mimi Moromisato on Pexels.com

Baguette

Photo by Mariana Kurnyk on Pexels.com

Garlic bread

Photo by Dana Tentis on Pexels.com

Flatbread

This feels like cheating, but I love me some flatbread. Tortilla, naan, roti, paratha, focaccia, even some frybread. Yum…

Photo by ROMAN ODINTSOV on Pexels.com
Photo by Jep Gambardella on Pexels.com

Shokupan or Japanese Milk Bread

There’s a method to this pillowy soft, fluffy, delicious goodness. Read more here.

a freshly baked shokupan Japanese milk bread loaf on a cooling rack
Photo from http://www.chopstickchronicles.com

Filipino bread

Again, feels like cheating but I want to mention some of them for posterity lol. From the humble pan de sal, asado roll, siopao, hopia to ensaymada, egg pies, buco pies (ok, the latter three are more pastries).

Pandesal
pan de coco
Image from https://www.thespruceeats.com/inside-a-filipino-panaderia-3030321

Dang, that went over 5, not even including bagel. These days, or for almost a year now, I’ve been trying to pick the healthier options like whole wheat, multi-grain bread more often than not and indulge on some of my faves only once in a while.

#5things

More Qs – Mind Over Heart, Dead Plants and Superstitions

I came across another Q&A post and found it to be one by crunchityfrog which pcguyiv rolled into one post (thumbs up, pcguyiv!). Here goes:

In your opinion, is it harder to exercise more or to eat healthier?

Yes, it’s harder to exercise, at least for me. Exercising takes more time/effort although eating healthier can be more costly in most places.

What funny or embarrassing story does your family often tell about you?

I don’t consider them funny or embarrassing, ok maybe kinda funny. They say I used to sleepwalk as a kid but they didn’t realize it until after several instances because they could still have a conversation with me when I was in that state (while rummaging through the pantry or fridge a few flights of stairs from my bedroom lol). They had to add/change locks every now and then because I can still work them in my sleepwalking state.

What holiday did you enjoy as a child but do not celebrate today?

Surprised to realize it’s Lent c/o my aunt who was actively involved in raising me and my siblings. She would always bring us somewhere nice during Holy Week. Now I’m no longer Catholic and even if I still were, it would be an odd, unlikely choice.

Does your heart rule your mind or vice versa?

Vice versa. I always thought my guardian raised me in the military style. I had to work on acknowledging and working on my emotions almost as an adult.

What superstitions do you have regarding the kitchen?

None. Come to think of it, I haven’t heard of any particularly regarding the kitchen.

Does a black cat loitering in the kitchen count? Photo by David Bartus on Pexels.com

Does a person have to be either a night owl or a morning person?

No. I think it boils down to what works for the person. I used to be a night owl, then I became a morning person with traces of night owl tendencies lol.

Have you ever carried a one-sided friendship along? When did you stop watering that dead plant?

Yes, for too long. I had an unhealthy messianic complex up until my late 20s. I stopped when I realized it wasn’t worth it. Life’s too short to waste on unhealthy relationships.

The Feathery Kind

I’m not very much into flowers but these stopped me in my tracks. Thought they were unique and a closer look and feel did not dissappoint.

The petals are feathery soft to the touch.

Although spotted in New Zealand, these protea flowers are native to South Africa and Australia and, in local tradition, are said to represent change and hope.

For Cee’s  FOTD and October Squares/ Kinda Square

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