We lingered for more than an hour at Statue Square before we crossed the street to the bus stop heading to Man Mo Temple. By now we are used to taking the bus and finding the right bus stops to wait for. What we’re not used to, well at least me, is seeing these large vehicles navigate through some of Hong Kong’s narrow one way roads, just like Hollywood Road. I was looking out on my window as the nearest street to Man Mo Temple was the Ladder Street. And soon I saw Nina from the front signaling us that we’re already here.
Christmas is changing. Honestly, I wish I would be in a place where Christmas is celebrated stripped off the commercialism and senseless countdowns and save some people some stress during this season. I asked a cousin of mine who has been around the world what he thinks about Christmas. I remember him telling me one of the best places he spent Christmas was in Papua New Guinea. People there don’t have much. They don’t have to worry about buying gifts to people and their only concern is coming together as a family, celebrating with what they have. Isn’t that ideal?
The alarm sounded at 9am. Yeah it was late because we’re not really obligated to visit as many places as we possibly can. We were supposed to go to this eatery Nina recommended but has to move that in the afternoon. Instead, we dash to the street to find a good breakfast place. We passed by McDonalds on the street, no way are we gonna eat there. 7-11 Convenience stores? We wanted something a bit local and authentic. Then we found ourselves at Mallory Street staring at this giant wall facade art of buildings and junks done with a paintbrush. It was the Art Community building with illustrations done by Dickie Seto.
Having been to other parts of Palawan like, Coron, El Nido and Taytay, I was looking forward to finally visiting Puerto Princesa because it’s one of the major cities in Palawan and probably the most urbanized among them all. This Hagedorn governed city is the 2nd largest city in the country and also known as one of the greenest and cleanest. Driving through from the airport and making a few stops before reaching the resort, I thought it’s one of those places I could actually live in for a while. Wide roads, well organized city layout and medium sized high rises. I actually like it.
Early morning on to our third day in Macau finds us walking through narrow alleys of an old neighborhood in San Antonio, Macau. Climbing zigzagging stairs, sleeping alley cats and neighborhood shrines to find us gasping a little for breath and realizing we’re already in level of the higher floors of the residential buildings in front of us. I thought this urban landscape of windows, air conditioners and stained walls felt a lot like the Old Manila. But a few more flight of stairs led us to Macau’s largest and oldest park, the Camoes Garden.
It was like a maze if I may say so. Or we were just moving too fast while navigating the inner streets of the old neighborhood of Macau that my sense of direction got lost in the wind. “We better hurry. We got a schedule to keep” reminded Joao, our guide. I couldn’t even remember half of what he told us during our walk. But one things definitely sure, I love walking these streets. It reminds me of Manila, or what it could have been if it wasn’t bombed to the ground.
I wasn’t really planning to run. I haven’t really run for years and my last run for 10k was more than 4 years ago as I recall. I didn’t run competitively after that and just do leisurely runs on the nearby track and field near our home. But morning of the 25th April 2010, I found myself running in a pine covered eco-trail in Baguio at Camp John Hay, catching my breath at least 1500m above sea level and racing to finish an 11k race at The North Face 100 Trial Running Marathon in Baguio. It’s my first time to do a trail run which is so much different on running on pavement. It was fun and it was challenging trying to define my limits.