Apr 29, 2011

Daily thoughts - a Royal Wedding and a Royal Disaster

I didnt get to watch the wedding of Princess Catherine and Prince William but honestly I wasnt really that keen on watching it anyway.

For those who missed it and want to watch the coverage, this site has photos and information about the event.

I remember when I was a kid and how my parents wouldnt let us change the channel so everyone  was forced could watch the wedding of Princess Diana and Prince Charles.

I was very young to comprehend what the fuss was all about back then. Not much has changed though. Im still apathetic to such events that cause global frenzy.

Nevertheless, I have to admit that over the years, my fascination for with Princess Diana grew. I saw her as this beautiful woman with a kind heart, privileged life, yet was unlucky in love. She was an icon and an enigma to me. I actually cried when she passed away on that fateful day.

Time indeed flew and after almost 30 years after the most watched wedding of the century, her son Prince William now weds the stunning Kate Middleton and repeats history so to speak.

I was tuned in on the other side of the news. I was worried over family and friends who live at the Southern Part of the USA. I wanted to know the extent of the damage of the tornado in the South.

Below is a live footage of the tornado in Tuscaloosa

This site shows other images of the hard hit areas of Alabama.

Its heartbreaking to read the news and go through each photo and see dazed people walking, looking at whatever's left of what used to be their home.

I wonder how the residents will be able to pick up their lives after this tragedy. The economy is unsteady, the number of jobless people has not totally abated and additional catastrophe like this isnt helping. In a time like this all i can say is God Bless America.

Apr 28, 2011

Daily thoughts - Hoping that All will be well..

Last March 5 2011, A  beautiful 18 year old Washington University student went missing after being last seen walking out of a grocery within the vicinity of her school. It has been almost 2 months and to this day noone has a clue where Marizela Perez is.

This young girl is the cousin of Conservative blogger Michelle Malkin. Im an avid reader of Ms Malkin's blog and I read this story on her website and Ive been keeping tabs on any progress over the last few weeks.

This link has the story below :

Marizela Perez: Missing one month

By Michelle Malkin  •  April 4, 2011 11:37 PM

On March 5, 2011, one month ago, my 18-year-old cousin Marizela (“Emem” to her family, “Mei” to her friends) vanished after walking out of a Safeway grocery store in Seattle’s University District.

This is one of the many ClearChannel Outdoor billboards across the West Coast that’s featuring Marizela and our family tip line for information about her disappearance:

This is the awareness-raising bracelet Marizela’s friends are selling to help the family:

One month later, we have on our own searched adjacent parks, streets, and neighborhoods for any signs or clues. We hired a private investigator. We put up a website. We are raising money and reaching out to private professional K-9 search/rescue/recovery teams for assistance.

One month later, it is difficult to get calls returned from the Seattle Police Department.

One month later, it is difficult to get local and national media to follow-up on her story.

One month later, there isn’t a morning or night that we haven’t thought about her, cried for her, ached for her return.

One month later, there isn’t a morning or night that we haven’t prayed for her and her parents.

And one month later, there isn’t a spare moment I haven’t been on the phone working her case, doing research, begging for help, calling up old friends, e-mailing strangers for advice, pulling any strings I can find, and lobbying law enforcement to do more.
Families across the country who have been through similar plights know the frustrations of dealing with intransigent bureaucracies, chronic apathy, and government agencies with limited resources and politically-driven agendas.
They know what it’s like to be told that your family’s case is just “one of dozens, 30, 40, 50, 100.”
They know what it’s like to feel helpless, angry, numb, scared, and overwhelmed by the battle to keep a loved one’s case from sinking to the bottom of some pile of paperwork and red tape.
And now, we know, too.
Marizela could be my daughter or your daughter. Young adults who go missing often don’t get the priority treatment that underage children get. When they turn 18, law enforcement’s attitude changes. The lack of coordination is flabbergasting.
But your children are always and forever your children.
And I know all parents out there reading this would fight with every cell of their bodies to get their children back — no matter whose bureaucratic toes are stepped on, no matter whose feathers might be ruffled. No matter what.
We have faith, friends, and family.
We will continue to lean on your prayers. We will need more volunteers in the Seattle area to keep spreading the word, keep Marizela in the public’s mind, and keep open eyes, ears, and boots on the ground.
I will keep you updated until we find her.
Emem, you are so loved. More than you know. By more than you’ll know.
A reader sent some eternal words of wisdom — for all of us:
“When you get to the end of your rope, reach out and grab the hem of His garment.”
Keeping the faith…

I dont know Marizela or her family personally but I am thoroughly bothered that she has not been found. I have a 3 year old niece and I would never get over it if something ever happened to her. Anyone who has a daughter, niece, cousin, mother, sister or any family member or friend who goes missing would certainly experience the same emotional and psychologica turmoil Marizela's family and friends are probably going through right now. Id be traumatized if someone I love suddenly vanished without a trace.

For many years Ive been reading crimelibrary.com and Ive come across thousands of dreadful stories  that have left me sick to my stomach. The part that bothered me most was not the actual crime itself but how the victims' family members felt and coped with the search and eventually the loss of their loved ones.

I am among the thousands of people still hoping and praying for Marizela's safe return. I seriously hope she doesnt become a statistic.

Below is a video made by her family and friends for a concert to raise funds for the search.

Please visit this website for more information.

Sana sa huli lahat ay magiging maayos...

Daily thoughts - 日本の実行

I put off writing a post on my most recent run because I was waiting for the results to come out. I was told there was none.


I read that there were 7K participants which was more than the 4K forecasted by the organizers. That's really awesome because this run was a fund raising event for the Japanese people and any amount no matter how small, can make a difference. There was was no rfid tag for this race so its rather impossible if the marshalls had to manually take down everyone's clock in time at the finish line. Imagine 7k people.

Im glad I brought my fitness tracker and just manually took my race time. Also I checked the clock display before I crossed the finish line. I think I improved my time by 4 minutes. Yay! I think this was partly because this route didnt have the flyover and also I was able to rest well ( 4 hours compared to 1-3 hours in my previous races).

activity time display
The main reason I joined this event however is because it was for a good cause. I have a soft spot for Japanese people. My first job was at JICA years ago and my bosses there were great. They were hardworking, generous, kind, fun. They were generally friendly very likable.I felt more like I was playing than working. There were times however that we had to meet deadlines and theyd request us to stay over at the office and finish the paperwork. We were well compensated though and were chauffeured to and from work. As a bonus, they even treated me and my colleague to Enchanted Kingdom, a popular theme park in my country.

Even after my stint with JICA, Ive always been fond of Japanese people as a whole, Their quirks, anime, products and their notable work ethics.

with my boss Mr Eiji Teramoto
I lost touch with my Japanese friends over the years. Unfortunately I couldnt find them in Friendster and later on Facebook. Nevertheless, I kinda miss working for them sometimes and I even remember all their names up to now!

  1. Mr Eiji Teramoto
  2. Mr Tohru Omachi
  3. Mr Takeshi Kuibira
  4. Mr Nobuyuki Harada
  5. Mr Tsukasa Kugimachi
When I heard about the tragedy that struck their country, I was overwhelmed with sadness. I wanted to help but I didnt know how since I could only contribute a little due to my budget constraint.

Then I came across this link on runners runner a website I usually check daily for upcoming races. I also read this event information on the Greentennial facebook page. I signed up right away.

Run for Japan kicked off last April 17 2011 at the Bonifacio Global City. Most fun runs are held at BGC  because its in the heart of the city, the roads are paved and the place is generally clean and orderly.

I picked up my race kit 3 days before the event. Unlike most of the previous races I joined, this one did not have any RFID tag and I think its because this was more of a fun run. In my opinion, omitting the need for a time chip will somehow defray the expenses of the organizers. This in turn will allow them to give more of the pooled money to Japan.

Thumper inspecting my race kit

Pre race day I was invited by my college friend Dr Pam to stay at her house. I havent been to her place for over a decade. I used to sleep over way back in college. We hung out after class or sometimes after training from Tae Kwon Do. I lived in a dormitory back then and it was very easy to sneak out. I was glad my folks never found out. hehe

The house was really beautiful and impressive. I told her it deserves a page in an interior design magazine.

The accommodation was first class!  Her mom even cooked singigang na hipon and laing for me. There were fruits lots of rice and I think I finished most of whatever was on the table. Everything was delicious.

We went to 7 eleven after dinner to get Gatorade for the next day's race. I saw this restaurant across the street and Pam told me that this place is always full of people. Next time I go to Pam's place, we are definitely gonna try the burrito at this joint.
Army Navy Burrito

Tour around the house.

dining area

1st dining table

2nd dining table

shelves inside the guest room

Dr Pam!

Shelves full of Medical books

That's 8 ball in there , their rottweiler-husky beast.  (sorry for the photo's poor quality )

the bath was spotless

i forgot to remove the barrel, this guy had a huge dick bound by a spring.  lolz.

according to my friend, kids love to hang out here. 

Look at what I found!

note: My friend just informed me that a tv commercial was filmed in their house just recently. i told her, "told you so! your house is fabulous!"

I was able to sleep for 4 solid hours and I felt great the next day. Pam and I got to the venue an hour before the race and we were able to warm up. I forgot whether there was a delay in the gun start but I started ahead of Pam because I joined the 10km whereas she she joined the 5km run.
start line. photography by Karen Navarroza
drummers at the start line : photography by Karen Navarroza

photography by Karen Navarroza

cosplay by photography by Karen Navarroza
There are hundreds or possibly thousands of photos of this event and I dont have the energy to scan all of it. You can check out more photos on Greentennial Facebook page and Active Moments website.

Overall I had fun during this run. There was abundant water and pocari drink. There were a few marshalls but the directions were clear so its less likely one will get lost. There were garbage cans/boxes a few meters from the water/hydration that really helped since people were more inclined to throw their used cup in it. As always there was a shower provided by Manila waters and there were firetrucks and ambulance strategically located.

photography by Karen Navarroza
The most amusing part of the run was finding people dressed up in weird outfits and cosplay.

photography by Jpeg Mendoza
photography by Jpeg Mendoza
More photos on Greentennial facebook fanpage.

Here are some photos I took with my not so technologically advanced Nokia phone camera.


Mascot of Runners Runner


Dr Pam and her pretty nurses

yours truly!



i dont know who he is supposed to be but his costume was so cool

Cloud strife wants to chop off my head


BSG board game
neat pet bowl i found in one of the closed stores.
I was glad I bought gatorade the night before. There was a long line for the free bottled pocari sweat drinks and I didnt really feel like waiting. I was exhausted but thank God I was injury free. I was content with the improved time for a 10km run. Most of all I was happy to see so many Filipinos take part in this worthy cause.

The only annoying thing that happened to me that day was when I got off at Robinson's Galleria on my way home. I found out that there was a cycling event that caused quite a traffic on the route I was taking. That wasnt fun for me. I had to take 2 rides before I got to town. The trip and the waiting took 2-3 hours of my time.  I was so tired and I felt nasty from the heat and sweat. Good thing there was still running water when I got home. I managed to fill up the buckets and take a shower before the supply was cut off for the day.

The long ride to my house didnt ruin my otherwise great morning. I really had a good time and Im proud to be part of the Run for Japan event. The Japanese people have always been generous to us and its high time for us reciprocate that kindness. They deserve it.