7 Years with Beauty Brick

I am amazed to find that I have been going to Beauty Brick for 7 long years already! I tend to be loyal to businesses that deliver excellent service consistently and I am glad that I have found a hair salon that can take care of my hair and not make me break the bank in the process.

For the past 7 years I have had more or less 8 digital perms done in this salon. I even blogged about my 1st digiperm experience with Beauty Brick (You can read about it at: Digital Perm at Beauty Brick) .

In the rare times I finish early or not on duty on a Saturday when I was an Internal Medicine resident, I would visit Beauty Brick and would dose off immediately upon sitting down. It was really embarrassing but the staff never said anything to make me feel more embarrassed than I already am. 🙂 And now that I am not living in Manila anymore, I still schedule a visit when I can.

What: Digital Perm at Beauty Brick Hair Salon

Where: Doña Consolacion Bldg, Jupiter St., Bel Air, Makati City

Price: I think about Php3500, 10% discount for previous customers

If you are considering having a digital perm, do consider going to Beauty Brick. You will not be disappointed. 🙂

This is my first digital perm experience way back in 2011! 😃

The red wall now looks like this.
This is after my digital perm. 🙂

Pediatricians are Admirable

I am often mistaken as a Pediatrician by my colleagues in the medical field. They say that I have that “aura” of being a pediatrician, probably because of my demeanor, and looks. I always tell them I chose Internal Medicine as my subspecialty.

When I started medical school, I also enjoyed learning about Pediatrics and loved my rotations in Pedia. However, there are certain situations during my clerkship year that made me decide to pursue a different field.

Let’s me introduce you to Mark (not his real name), he is an active 12 year old who arrived in Manila few days prior from Bacolod City. He came to live with his grandmother in Cubao. He didn’t go to Manila for a vacation, he came to be admitted in one of the premier hospitals in the Metro for pediatric patients. He was diagnosed with osteosarcoma and was referred to this hospital for management. I was a medical clerk that time and got to know Mark from our daily rounds. He would especially talk to me since I speak Ilonggo and he was not comfortable speaking in Tagalog. He would talk about his life in the province, his classmates, his parents. He didn’t know what osteosarcoma is, he just knows that he has this “bukol” or mass on his left leg and that he has a limp when walking. After a few days he developed an infection that needed antibiotics to be given through intravenous route. The first two doses were given but his grandmother couldn’t afford buying it anymore. He would go for days until the next dose can be given, and he would also be in pain. One day we went on our usual rounds and when we passed by his bed, he was sobbing and was inconsolable. He wanted to go home but his grandmother can’t afford his medications, and was still looking for help from the different government agencies. Since I am a familiar face, he looked at me and talked to me with the saddest eyes, tears falling, and told me to please let him go home. I can’t help but stop the lump that was forming in my throat, and fight back tears that were threatening to fall. As an aspiring doctor at that time, we were told to be empathic but must keep check our emotions. I told him reassuringly that his grandmother is looking for ways to get him his medications so he can be managed well and go home. He continued to sob. We moved on to the next patient and I went on with the things that we needed to do that day, but my encounter with Mark haunted me when I went home and was able to reflect on the day’s happenings. My heart was broken because I got to know Mark and was rooting for him to get well but due to their financial situation, he could not be given the ideal management. I didn’t want my heart broken again and again. As an adult I know that I should be objective, but sometimes when situations involve these innocent children, I can’t help but be emotional. They should be playing, studying, and growing up but instead these sick kids are in the hospital. We were exposed to a lot of Pedia patients during our rotations and not all of them had a sad story, most got better. I admire my Pediatrician colleagues a lot.

Going through other rotations, I also enjoyed Internal Medicine more than the others, so I chose it for my residency and I am happy. How about you? Why did you choose the subspecialty you are in? For future doctors, what do you want to be? 💖

Reebok x Line Friends

I have quite a fascination for cute, pink stuff and there’s no better indulgence than getting this sneakers from Reebok in collaboration with Line Friends. I was won over by its cuteness! Aside from being comfortable, it’s such a joy just to look at whenever I wear it. The shoes also comes in mint if you’re not a fan of pink. I’m really happy with this purchase. 💖

Isaac Toast – Delicious Breakfast in South Korea

I had the chance to visit South Korea again last April and I tried one of the popular breakfast toasts around – the Isaac Toast. It is a popular breakfast toast stand in Myeongdong area. There was quite a queue when we went there. I waited about 10 minutes to get my hands on their delectable toast and I must say that the wait was worth it. The ahjummas grilling the sandwiches on the counter were efficient and pleasant. I tried the ham special toast (KRW 2,600) and iced coffee (KRW 2,500) and I was satisfied with the sandwich which had cabbage, egg, and ham on a buttered toast. The meal was enough to give me energy to walk around the Myeodong area shopping district! Do try Isaac Toast when you visit Seoul.

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Located in 105 Toegye-ro, Chungmuro 1(il)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea

Overseas Filipino Workers are Heroes

This post is quite a personal one as this tackles my story and I believe part of the story of millions of Filipinos who have an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) parent/s.

The OFWs are called the unsung heroes of the Philippines, with their contributions giving back billions to the economy annually. A lot has been written about how their sacrifices enabled kids to be sent to school, houses built, businesses put up, and a list of all the benefits that we, their loved ones left here, reap. My story is most probably not unique, but the person who this post is about certainly is.

My father is an OFW. Given his age now, he has lived abroad longer than he has spent here in the Philippines. He saw an opportunity back when he was just a young man and took his chance on working in a foreign country away from everything he is familiar with. Together with my mother, it was difficult to raise a young family in a foreign country so my brother and I were raised by my grandparents, aunt, and cousins. Weekly phone calls, letters, and voice tapes were the form of communication back then, cellphones much more video calling were but a dream.

Every summer my parents would have their yearly vacation to coincide with the months we don’t have classes. Those times were always joyful with trips to the beach, eating out, and playing around. Looking back, we didn’t have gadgets or annual trips abroad but we were happy and my siblings and I kept ourselves preoccupied. Growing up my father would always remind me to be kind and love my siblings. He did not get mad or confront us if ever we were unkind to each other but he would just remind us to love and be kind to each other anyway. He would imbibe his value of being neat and clean so he would always check on our nails if it were too long, and clean our ears for us.

My father has certainly sacrificed a lot. He was not there for most months of the year so he missed out on the little things that make up mundane days – the things that we usually take for granted like being driven to school, doing school projects together, or trying not to wade in floodwaters which only happen during rainy months. But he makes up for it when he is home. He even drove me 40 kms away to my university when I was in college and up to now that I am working, he still drives me and fetches me from work. He must have felt lonely, sad, and longing for most of the time but he is strong enough not to get those emotions get the better of him since he has a family depending on him. We are most thankful for his sacrifice because it enabled us to have food on the table, a roof over our heads, and a chance at a good education.

I would always get sad when he is about to go back abroad and I can’t believe that after decades of feeling like this, it still has not changed. We would never get numb to the feeling, do we? But maybe more so for him. He would always say that if he was given the choice, he would love to stay here. But money goes down the drain faster than we can earn it here in the Philippines as a middle-income family.

How will it be in the next 10 or 20 years? Will it still be like this for us Filipinos? Will it still be a toss up between staying with your family and getting by, as they say “isang kahig, isang tuka“, or going abroad and giving your family better opportunities? The answer is a complex mix of different factors. If there would be jobs here that can sustain a growing family I’m sure that these capable men and women would choose to stay in the Philippines. There is no better feeling than seeing your loved ones everyday, being in your own country and living in the culture that you grew up with. But until then, there would still be millions of people each year that would join the diaspora, there would still be families that get to see their mother, father, or siblings for a month or two in a year.

Are you an OFW or do you have relatives who are OFWs? Share your thoughts. 💖

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Taken during one of our video calls when he found out how to use the various filters. 😂

Dreamgirls (West End)

“All of my life I’ve been a fool
Who said I could do it all alone.
How many friends have I already lost?
And how many dark nights have I known?
Walking down that long road. There was nothing you could buy.
All those years of darkness
Could make a person blind.
But now I can see that
I am changing.”

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The Dreamgirls movie has been quite popular when it was shown in 2006. However, I was not able to watch the movie, and when I finally catched it on a cable channel, I didn’t quite get the story so I channel surfed instead. Eleven years after it was shown, I am glad my beautiful sister “forced” me to watch the West End musical. As with most things, the less expectations you have the more you will be amazed at how exceptional something is. That’s my experience watching this great production which was was staged in The Savoy Theatre.

The cast were magnificent, giving heartfelt rendition of the classic songs we have come to love such as “Listen”,“I am Changing”, and groove to “One Night Only”.  I got teary-eyed when Listen was sung. I was so engrossed with the adventures of Effie, Lorrell, and Deena and wished the acts could be longer!☺️

If you haven’t watched it yet, do catch it as it is still being staged. 💖

 

 

 

Blogging, finally.

“If you never try you’ll never know..”

I have always wanted to start blogging since years ago. I have had a few attempts at blogging throughout the years but I have never got around to maintaining a blog site. As they say, life got in the way, and even if there were tons of things to write about, I just did not have the time and the energy to do it.

I think that this season in my life is the perfect time to start blogging again. Why you may ask? We’ll discover it together as the days go by. ☺️

Thank you for getting this far reading my first post. 💖