Hey HK 2017!

I resolved to be more punctual this year. Good thing I didn’t set a deadline for this travel post.

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Since this is a pretty belated post, my sister beat me to blogging about the details (check out her post here). And I may or may not be too lazy to be as comprehensive.

But I can still say a few things:

  1. On our first day in HK, my sister said that it was already her fifth time in Hong Kong (this trip was my third). My brother chimed in that he’s been to HK seven times before. And my mother swept the floor by saying she’s been to Hong Kong at least fifty times, which is ridiculous and also amazing. Apparently, way back in the late 80s or 90s or so, HK was the production powerhouse in Asia. If my mom wanted her commercials/TV advertisements edited with new technology, she had to fly out to Hong Kong for post-production because Manila was still behind the times. Cool.
  2. Surprise? Every time someone asked me last semester if I had any plans over the break, I would shrug and say nothing. I planned to bum out. But lo and behold, my mom suddenly bought tickets to HK maybe 2 weeks before we flew out. Thank you, mom. Though it’s not entirely coming from the left field, since my mom had mentioned wanting to celebrate New Year abroad before.
  3. Going back to a country you’ve been to before is weird, in the sense that you’d expect more familiarity with the places, commute, language etc. But nope. I was still in full on tourist mode. Maybe it’s because the last time I went in 2013, I just went where my family took me. Now I know how to read a map and use Google and everything.


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Newt’s Suitcase! (Stationery Set)

No nifflers were harmed in the making of this post.

I was going through my things a couple of days ago* and I found this gem:


It’s Newt Scamander’s Suitcase (of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them fame)! My brother gave me this stationery set last Christmas –thank you, bro. I have something to write about.

Newt Scamander: Deluxe Stationery Set was released by Insight Editions. The same publisher also came out with other Harry Potter-themed stationery: HP journals (Slytherin, Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hogwarts and Deathly Hallows), FBAWTFT journals (Newt Scamander, Obliviate, City Skyline, MACUSA), and Deluxe Stationery Sets (Gryffindor, Hogwarts and Slytherin).**

I can’t believe they don’t offer Hufflepuff-themed stationery??? What a shame.

Honestly, I’d say the best thing about the set is the box. Yes. The whole thing comes in this sweet magnet-flap leatheresque box with a cute “muggle-worthy” detail.


Continue reading “Newt’s Suitcase! (Stationery Set)”


College Graduation!!!

Well here’s a long overdue post.

Last May? 2016, I graduated from college with a Bachelor’s Science in Biology. I’d like to thank my mother, fam, friends, thesis partner, professors and the UP Manila community at large. And, of course, the Filipino people.

I didn’t post about it so much because it wasn’t the end-all be-all of my life. Graduating from college, while an achievement in itself that my mother and I should definitely be proud of, is only a step towards the greater dream of becoming a doctor.

So here’s a 1-minute Snapchat video.

  1. We stayed in Microtel for my college graduation in UP Diliman, and in Shangri-la for the university graduation in PICC.
  2. I don’t actually have a lot of photos of the event; I also haven’t bothered to scan any of the official documentation.
  3. Thank you to my Lola Doppie and to other members of the extended fam for celebrating with us.

It feels like a lifetime ago.

Blog, Travel

Australia 2016: #LifeDownUnder

AUSTRALIA. What can I say? From efficient transportation to a hint of the great wild, everything’s within reach when you’re in the Land Down Under.

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I love both Melbourne and Sydney (with Melbourne taking the lead). It’s easy to go around either city, and there’s no end to the attractions you can go to. You can walk a few blocks and find yourself in a museum, library or other; and it takes just a train or a short ferry ride to get to the beach or zoo.

But while I love it, I do have some reservations, mainly on aboriginal rights.


Is it offset by the fact that the people we met were progressive about immigration and LGBT rights? Probably not.


Trip Highlights


According to my trusty Alunsina journal, my must-see list for Melbourne included:

  • Melbourne Museum (apparently the largest in the southern hemisphere)
  • National Gallery of Victoria (for the Andy Warhol/Ai Weiwei exhibit!)
  • Victorian Arts Centre
  • Collins & Spring Streets
  • Old Melbourne Gaol
  • St. Kilda Beach
  • Flinders Street Station


For Sydney, this was my list:

  • Sydney Harbour and Sydney Opera House (duh)
  • Circular Quay and Writer’s Walk
  • Museum of Contemporary Art
  • Darling Harbour
  • Dixon St. (Chinatown)
  • The Rocks
  • Taronga Zoo
  • The Royal Botanic Gardens

I recommend every place we went to. For more details and photos of the places we did go to, read on! :)

Continue reading “Australia 2016: #LifeDownUnder”

Blog, Travel

Food: Angeles x Clark

{ Mila’s Tokwa’t Baboy | Cafe Fleur | Jangsoo Korean Restaurant | Hues at Park Inn by Radisson Clark | Patchawaran’s Thai Restaurant }

Thank you to everyone who made this food trip possible: my mom (technically the birthday celebrant), my brother (the driver), my sister, and our generous and lovely tita b and ate m. Pampanga was awesome. I’ll return someday to see sights other than the yummy food!

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Blog, Essays

filipino liberalism, the ties that bind, and the illusion of immutability

M recently remarked that I haven’t been posting anything other than art and poetry (and korean dramas), so here is a rant.

No editing. 💕💕💕 Lots of redundancies. Lots of sense.


Privilege protects me from the consequences of my liberalism.
Continue reading “filipino liberalism, the ties that bind, and the illusion of immutability”

ArtLit, Blog

i’ve been hit by the hallyu fever

and I can’t get up. (I blame The Heirs for the storm that followed).

A couple of weeks ago, I caught a scene of The Heirs on a local TV channel (it was a Filipino-dubbed version). I can’t remember the exact scene anymore, but I remember finding it outrageously dramatic or something. And given all the free time I had last January, I thought I should give the kdrama a try.

My past self should be sorry. I am now obsessed.


The thing about this show is that it’s so over-the-top. It’s like Boys Over Flowers (though tamer), and it features a lot of the same tropes:

  • Poor girl goes to an elite school
  • The elite school redefines the meaning of rich high school students: golf and horseback riding as PE classes, everyone’s the child of a top professional or the heir to a chaebol group…
  • The height of Korean fashion
  • Secret identity (ish)
  • An undertone of abuse within asymmetrical high school relationships

The drama isn’t the best in the world (in fact, out of the three I’ve watched so far, it’s the one I’m least inclined to rewatch). But I figured out a lot of things about my tastes because of it.


This is the character Rachel Yoo, and apparently she’s the archetype of a woman I admire the most. Cold, emotionally-stunted, privileged, and wears great clothes. It’s still a toss-up on whether or not I want to be her or if I want to worship her. In any case, I was rooting for her just as much as I was rooting for PSH’s character.

There’s also another girl I like, and it’s 50% because her character’s cute (I WOULD FORGIVE HER ANYTHING AND CUDDLE HER FOREVER) and 50% because she speaks English well in real life (apparently that’s one of my standards in liking people). Later googlefu told me that she is apparently an idol singer as well.

Why are Korean stars so perfect and well-rounded?  Continue reading “i’ve been hit by the hallyu fever”


Jari in EK: Red, queues and the Montys


This is my face four and a half hours after waking (I woke up around 6AM). I was pretty damn happy because we didn’t have to go through the long ticket and entry lines, since we were in a special group reservation. Plebs.
I was supposed to instagram this shot, but at some point I realized that I need to be a bit more creative about my life. Look at my familiar Japan travel shoes!!! (They ended up dead after this EK trip. Lol.)
All events must be celebrated by multiple selfies. My sisters from other mothers (and one from the same mother). That’s the birthday celebrant in the NOPE cap!!! We actually bought her the very same cap as one of our gifts (so I guess now she’s got a matching set for her best friend).
One of the cutest things about my dad’s side of the family is that we love taking pictures of ourselves, of our families, of our relatives taking pictures of other people…
The biologist/plant-enthusiast inside me was squealing! Scattered within the park are these neat little signs informing people about the fauna.
Aside from an overdue celebration for Rafi’s 13th birthday, last Sunday was also the day before the Chinese New Year! I’m not sure what the sign I was posing next to was saying, but it seems Chinese enough…?
And because I want to show off my (sadly tight) red pants and my (cute) tummy, here’s another outfit shot.
EK Jump Shot
Nothing screams F U N like a well-choreographed (not) jump shot, with well-coordinated (yes) red clothes. (c) Anne&Chav
I’ve never ridden the Space Shuttle attraction before. Sometimes it was because I was too scared, or because the ride was closed and under maintenance. But after riding so many other intense roller coasters abroad, I felt like riding Space Shuttle should be a walk in the park. So I tried.
And I survived. The reverse part wasn’t as scary as I thought it would be; what really got me screaming was the anticipation right before the initial drop. Did I already mention that Space Shuttle was my dad’s favorite ride? Well it was, and that makes this milestone even cooler.
Another milestone: I ACTUALLY WON IN A GAME OF SKILL. Ish. Whatever, do you see the words “Legendary!” next to my jacket-clad self? That means I shot the most zombies in the 7D game. I was the best player of the game, and I still can’t believe it.
This is the cutest image you’ll ever see. LOOK AT MY GODDAUGHTER. LOOK. I can’t wait to start earning so that I can spoil her to bits!!!
Me, distracted by the props inside the haunted house: Ang ganda naman ng lamp na ‘yan!!! Pa’no kaya ‘yan ginawa? || Guy in a scary slasher suit: Mas maganda ka *wooooh* …Anyway, I still screamed a lot.
There’s something really magical about carousels.
I’ll fondly remember Jungle Log Jam as that place where I got wet and my high school best friends loudly proclaimed I looked like I just finished having shower sex.
You know, lining up for this ride for ONE HOUR AND THIRTY MINUTES may have been too much, and the reward too little (and also everything I wore became uncomfortably wet). But being with awesome people helped a lot.
I don’t remember the last time I’ve been up a Ferris Wheel. This last trip gave me a new dream: to dine inside a Ferris Wheel cart with person/s I love. (We had tickets for dinner in the sky, but the Rio Grande ride delayed us).
“The magic stays with you.” I hope it does.


Happy birthday again to my cousin! And thanks for the whole day treat. It was awesome.

I have so many other blog posts planned out, but somehow this came out first. And a belated greeting: have a happy Chinese New Year!

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ArtLit, Blog, Essays, Travel

Jari x 2015

Fifteen minutes to the new year. Time for a 2015 recap!
People x Art x Travel x Advocacy

x People

This year, I learned that relationships don’t always have to be quick and intense, or (conversely) slow-burning and infrequent to be sustainable. I found my time occupied by new and old friends I somehow managed to not get tired of.

So here’s an enthusiastic hurrah for the people who made 2015 awesome, from old friends to new ones, from orgmates to family members. I love you all.

x Art

This year, I’ve done quite a fair bit in terms of my craft. I made good use of the calligraphy set my sister gave, I began to paint watercolor portraits, and I wrote lots of poetry. I even joined (and lost) more essay contests!

And to gain more inspiration, I visited more museums and watched more performance art shows. I learned to stop and smell the roses.

x Travel

This year, my travel diary became quite full. From our unforgettable trip to Japan (x), to the even more unforgettable Bali trip (no blog post yet), to our last-minute Baguio trip two weeks ago –the world had a lot to offer this 2015. I’m looking forward to even more moments in 2016!

x Advocacy

And not to forget the things I believe in: love. This year, I became more aware of the plight of the Indigenous Peoples in the Philippines. I also learned more about intersectional representation, more forms of oppression, and life in general. And I’ve made more of an effort to feature Philippine culture, art and music in this blog, because our country has a lot of wonderful things to offer. #LabanPilipinas #Art

I did a lot of growing up in 2015, and I have a lot of people and moments to thank for it. Here’s to a whole new year of falling in love with life!

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