Embracing Imperfections

Unknown

In the light, our shadows look the same.

How many times were you called fat and ugly? I heard it many times in my life from my neighbors, classmates, friends and just random people. I don’t have a flawless skin, I have scars on my legs but I have stories on them. Stories of how much I enjoyed my childhood – from climbing trees, cycling around my neighborhood, playing on the ground and swimming in a public beach.
I lived in a community were fair and white skinned people are treated like a royalty. It’s a synonym for being rich and beautiful. They get all the appreciation whereas, people like me with brown skin was like an equivalent to ugly, dirty, and poor. I grew up with a lot of insecurities in life. I grew up comparing myself to others. I wished that I look like this and that. I wished that I had a flawless white skin or a the perfect nose. Believe me, I tried all the whitening lotions and soaps and scar removal creams. Name it. Been there and done that. Yes, it works. My skin went 5 times clearer than before. Then, I stop using all these things. I stopped because I realized that these were just superficial. That skin color or the size of your body is not a measurement of how you are as a person. I am starting to appreciate me, my skin color, the size of my body, my scars and my stretch marks and all that is perfectly imperfect.
I remember not so long ago, a high school classmate of mine commented on one of our common friend’s photo on Facebook, bullying me. Stating that I acted beautifully when the truth is I’m not and to top it off she called me names which were rude. After reading the comment, it made me wonder and I started questioning myself, “ am I that I ugly?”. I looked at myself in the mirror, touching the parts of my body that were not perfect in their eyes and said “If I’ll have this done and that, maybe I’ll be pretty enough for them”. But then, it will not be me. This is the real me and I love everything about me, even the fats in my belly, the scars and the stretch marks on my body. I’m not ashamed of my flaws and I will continue acting pretty and sexy because this is my life. Ladies remember, you are beautiful. Don’t let a single comment question your confidence. Let’s stop online Bullying!

P.S.
I gained 7 kilos. I’m now 46kg from 39kg.
Yes, I’m fat but I’m not.

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious Night

I got a discount code for the Mary Poppins show in  the Dubai Opera last week. I rushed myself to book in order to get a good slot. Fortunately, I got the second front row which was close to the stage. I was booked last Saturday evening and left the house early to meet my friends in Dubai Mall but end up running to the venue as we caught up eating and  forgot that it will take time to reach the area. We reached the Dubai Opera on time (thank God we didn’t miss any acts) .

It was an amazing experience for me as I am fond of watching plays even when I was still in the Philippines. If you watched the movie and enjoyed it , I can assure you that you will have a fantastic night after watching it. Here are some photos of me and my friends during the 30-minute break from the play.

P.S You are not allowed to use your mobile phones or any camera during show as it might distract  the artists.

IMG_4890[1]

Burj Khalifa back drop

IWTO3628[1]

good show, good company

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

in between breaks

NKVC3830[1]

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

Upper Box

NMPJ3696[1]

Mary Poppins souvenirs

IMG_4893[1]

yes, they do serve foods here

The Girl Who Once Dreamt Of Becoming A Flight Attendant

It all started when my second grade teacher asked us to write our ambitions on a piece of paper. Most of my classmates wanted to be a doctor, a teacher or a policeman but I always wanted to be a flight attendant. I wanted to travel the world for free, see different people and culture. Whenever I see an airplane or go to the airport to meet my sister from abroad, I get so excited and always tell myself that soon I will be one of those girls walking straight and proud.

WhatsApp Image 2017-05-01 at 11.06.35 PM

Until I reached college and took up Bachelor of Science in Information Technology, I still dreamt of becoming a flight attendant. Then, I landed my first job on an export company but I never forgot my ambition. So I tried applying on local airlines but they were too strict with the requirements and I lost confidence. I’m just 5’2 in height and you see, they require at least 5’5 (Poor me). I quit my first job and got an offer in an NCLEX processing center before I decided to work abroad as an admin staff.  I have a fair job here, outside of the Philippines. I work in a transportation company and  almost everyday I get to ride in luxury cars. From Ferraris to Lamborghinis, Mclarens to Mercedes with a driver on my way to work. From an economy car to a stretched limousine ride. I tried it all. My friends envy me because aside from the rides, I get free VIP tickets to concerts. Sure, it’s fun but you’ll feel bored with the same routine everyday.

While living abroad, I have learned that you don’t need to be that tall  nor have a fair skin to be a flight attendant and hey, they accept high school graduates (so, rejoice!). I have tried applying to International airlines and in fact, I got invited for an interview many times but I didn’t have the courage to attend them. I was scared, scared because I am so comfortable with the place where I am working now but too bored that I want to quit. I just realized that I don’t want to be a flight attendant  and don’t want to work as an admin staff. I want to be a traveler and write about my travels.  You may think that that’s what your ambition in life is but you will soon see that life has much more to offer. It will take a lot of detours and patience but I’ll be there soon

Tips for Traveling Solo

Traveling alone can be scary specially if it’s your first time. It maybe outside or within the country. Traveling solo has it’s  pros and cons, such as safety concerns and getting bored. Here are some tips on how you can survive out there and enjoy your trip.

 

IMG_3121.jpg

be cautious when hitch hiking

 

  • In booking a hotel/hostel make sure there’s a 24-hour reception service. Inform the hotel/hostel in advance that you will arrive late or early so you will have time to rest and freshen up inside your room before exploring the place.
  • Leave your travel details with your family or your friend.
  • Don’t bring a lot of cash, just enough.
  • Know your destination. Search online on areas that needs to be visited. It will save you time.
  • On getting to your destination learn how to get there before jumping on a ride. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Your hotel concierge personnel  knows better than anyone else.
  • Make friends with the locals but trust no one. After all you are a stranger on the area. Take extra care especially walking alone on dark roads or on a lonely street.
  • Dining outside alone can be boring. You can always look for a diner if you don’t want to feel lonely. Try checking local restaurants or go for street foods if your adventurous enough.
  • Know what you want to get out of your trip. This will help you plan you daily itinerary.
  • Ask for your hotel’s business card and bring it along with you when out. If in case you get lost, you can hail a cab and show them the card to take you back to your hotel.

 

 

 

 

Obtaining Schengen Visa in UAE

Getting a Schengen visa can be a pain in the ass.A lot of Filipinos can relate to the agony that i felt while waiting for my visa.It took me 4 weeks to receive my visa due to the EID Holidays in the UAE. Here’s how to process your visa and the preparation that you need.

There are 28 countries that are under the European Union. You can check the countries below.

Member states of the EU (year of entry)

You can travel to all these countries with only one valid visa.

WHEN TO APPLY?

I suggest that you apply 3 months before your departure date to avoid the hassles and worries.I processed my own visa a month before my departure. I had to hire an agent to do the processing for me because i ran out of appointment slots ( schedule date that you need to book for you to submit your documents and your biometrics/fingerprints ). Make sure to check the website of the country where you will process your visa.

VISA REQUIREMENT

  • Fully accomplished and signed application form.Here’s the link for the form http://www.immihelp.com/visas/schengenvisa/application_form_english.pdf
  • Valid passport (valid at least 6 months from the date of travel)
  • Passport-sized photos in white background (tell the personnel of your favorite photoshop that it’s for the Schengen Visa)
  • Passport photocopy
  • Emirates ID photocopy
  • NOC ( No Objection Certificate)
  • Salary Certificate
  • Travel Insurance
  • Bank Statement with bank stamp (3 months)
  • Round trip ticket reservation
  • Hotel reservation with contact details i.e telephone number and email address and complete address

Don’t worry too much about your bank statement if you don’t have that much money in your account. When i applied for my visa, the amount that was on my bank account was only 800aed (Php 8,000).The money that i deposited two days before i requested my bank statement did not reflect on the printed statement.However, you need to make sure that the salary stated in your certificate should reflect in your bank statement for 3 months, it should be an active account (with incoming and outgoing transaction).Maybe i was just lucky enough that they did not t look into mybank statement that much.

HOW MUCH IS THE COST FOR VISA AND WHERE TO APPLY?

The visa will cost you 60 euros but I spent almost 200 euros or 1000aed (Php10,000 more or less) because as i mentioned above that i ran out of an appointment slot thinking that i can have the appointment at any time. You can apply for your visa at the Embassy of your point of entry or to the country where you will be staying the longest.Note that there are some embassies that may require an interview. You will only need to bring all the complete requirements and  do the biometrics at the Embassy.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR THE SCHENGEN VISA TO BE RELEASE AND WHAT IF I’LL GET DENIED?

Some visas will only take 7 workings days, some will take up to 15 working days.Don’t count weekends and Holiday’s.If you’re denied, you can file for an appeal within 30 days. There’s no guaranteed that you will get the visa.

Here’s how the visa looks like.

IMG_7866

Good luck on chasing your dream

missing you

Have you tried dreaming of your loved ones who passed away and felt so surreal that it made you cry while sleeping?Well, i always do and it happens to me almost every night.I always dream of my mom.I dreamt that something bad  happened to her or that she’s dying and i always awakened by this kind of dream. It makes me want to call my sister back home and to remind her to take care of mom properly since i’m working abroad.Then the sad reality always hit before i press the call button – that my mom died almost 7 months ago. 
mama
last photo with her
I’m the youngest in the family and i was very close to my mom. I think  got my reserved- nagger, ambitious, stubborn and very sensitive kind of attitude from her.I feel like i’m the exact replica of her attitude.She’s my number one supporter, who cries whenever i travel and won’t go home for a day or two because i’m on a team building,vacation or just simply sleeping over on my friend’s place coz i’m too drunk to go home.
mama 2
we love goofing around 
The nanny that every mom wants to have to take care of their baby.She took good care of my baby and even  before my baby, she already took good care of my sister’s children.I’m so lucky to have her that even if i will be given the chance to choose a mom.I will still choose her. it’s because i see her hard work for us, her unconditional love and how she calls me “inday” (precious one).
I feel like no one can understand me on how i really feel inside.You may say that you understand me coz  you’ve been in the same situation before but we always cope differently and we all have different kind of level on how we love our parents. I have accepted the fact she’s gone a long time ago. I have let her go. It’s just that i miss her so much and i really wanted to kiss her, hug her and hear her voice.Sometimes i just wanna get my self so tired so that whenever i get home i would just sleep and hope that I won’t have the same dream again. Sometimes i drown myself to tears secretly at night while my room mates obliviously know what is happening to me under the sheet.No one can understand you like your mother does not even your sister or your best friend.
Wherever she is right now, I know she’s watching over me and will always guide me to the best road of my life. I love you Ma Nesa.

Me on Ice

When was the last time you did something for the first time that you really wanted to try since you were a kid? I remember when i was on second grade my sister would always drag us to the mall to do ice skating. Yes, we used to have an ice skating rink in my hometown( Cebu ) before but, i didn’t know why they closed. Whenever my sister would bring us to the mall to try it, i always get sick a day before so i never got the chance to skate until the mall decided to take it off.

I’ve been here in Dubai for almost 3 years now and I’ve never really got the nerve to try it in Dubai Mall. I’m scared that i might fall down and someone might cut my fingers accidentally by the blades (I’ve seen it a lot in youtube). Okay, enough of these stupid imaginations. I finally had the guts to try it over a week ago. For the first 10 minutes, I was trying to find my balance and just kept holding on the side. Then, i finally learned to walk without any guide. I can even turn around. Infact, i was doing a great job. I never fell down or maybe i’m just trying not to because maybe someone might run over me and cutmy fingers. hahah .I had so much fun doing it and I will probably do it again soon

IMG_6493

IMG_6494

IMG_6497
IMG_6599

IMG_6597

i can skate…yahhoo!

IMG_6596

Holi Festival in Dubai

Holi is a spring festival, also known as the festival of colours or the festival of love. One of the most popular festivals in India. I was curious about it and decided to visit the park where they held the festival. I bought  my ticket in the entrance for 70aed.It’s a must (not really) that people celebrating the festival should wear white.Once you’re in the area, people will start throwing you colors (don’t worry it’s organic) or wiping colors on your face or on your shirt. Everyone is happy and having fun.I guess that’s the highlight of the festival

Bucket List

I’m already 30 and i feel like i haven’t done anything for myself. I’ve been working for almost 12 years for my family. I dont regret doing it but there are just some things and experiences that I haven’t done. Don’t get me wrong, seeing my family happy is my priority especially my mom. I always have her as my inspiration in life.I dedicate everything to her. I lost my mother November last year and i feel like i also died.Not just the half of me but the whole me. I still have my daughter to take care of and i know a lot people love me. I’m a reserved person and i am not great at showing my own emotions to other people. I always have this habit of keeping it to myself and suppressing the feelings. The truth is i lost myself, i don’t know who i am already and what i really want in my life. I am now on a process on finding myself back.So, im creating  my own bucketlist in hoping to  find the lost piece in me.I know, i can’t have my mom back but maybe someday i will  learn to let go and accept the fact that she’s gone. So, here’s the list i want to do.
* travel as much as i can (within The Philippines: Cebu, Masbate,Bohol, Bantayan Island,Dumaguete,Manila,Baguio,Batangas,Tagaytay,Camiguin,Sumilon Island, Boracay, Palawan Outside of the country: Austria,Czech Republic,Hong Kong,Morocco,Oman,Slovakia,UAE,)
*meet new friends around the world
*skydive
*bungee jumping
*hot air balloon ride
*to do a Safari trip in Africa
*to see the northern or  southern lights
*learn to swim
*learn to drive
*camping near the beach and watch the stars
*Hello Kitty Birthday Theme
*make my own snowman
*swim with the Dolphins
*Cruise ship for 15 days
*parasailing
*scuba/helmet diving
*swim with the whale sharks