The One With A Quote

“As long as you know where you stand, stay there.”

 

As said by my friend, Jules.

Relevant because so many things in my life right now are kind of wibbly, wobbly (heh. a cookie if you get the reference) and I’m not quite sure which action to take anymore. So there…

 

[edit as of September 3, 2014 10:50am] Ok. I take it back. I’m not actually sure any more where I stand so that’s a new problem altogether.

Kalat Kid In Europe: People are strange when they are strangers


My friends know that I am not the most sociable person in the universe. In fact, people scare me. When I’m on my own, I usually just try to disappear and blend in, trying not to draw any attention to myself. But every once in a while, shit happens and I am forced out of my comfort zone and I end up talking to… PEOPLE. Besides, having spent the last 2 weeks in Oslo and Budapest, a place that hasn’t been taken over by Filipinos (yet), it was kind of impossible to blend in. But it was easy, though, to not be seen… especially when you’re so short and you’re out of everybody’s line of vision. Sometimes they’ll just notice you when you end up face first in their armpits.

So I managed to be brave on this trip (or maybe I was just too bored, only having myself for a company… I can be quite a bore) and met a couple of people who were actually very interesting.

1. Alex (yes, I remember his name) – Location: Oslo.

Found myself in some cafe (which was really a pub) after having walked 30 minutes from my hotel trying to find Grunnerlokka. I found it, but decided not to stay there because it was crowded. Cafe Tamara, a few minutes off the grid was where I decided to have a beer and finish my book in peace. Guy comes over to ask me about my Kindle and then he invited himself over for a chat. I was sociable for 2 hours, ladies and gentlemen! I was freezing, my lips were numb but I still managed to have a good conversation about doing laundry, the perks of travelling for work (me) , living on your own (me) vs living in your parents’ basement (him), having lived in a different country (him), tanning, and people wearing shorts in the freezing cold (it was 15deg in Oslo that time at 7pm). A friend of his joined us and surprise surprise, his friend’s mom works for the company that owns mine! Talked about getting a promotion through his friend’s mom. “Hey, met this cool Asian chick over at Tamara’s. She seems brilliant. Maybe you could get her a job here in Oslo,” was my spiel. Alex decided that it needed embellishment. “Yeah. Went home with the first guy she met.” I decided that it was time to exit after that. Guy was cute though.

2. American Guy with glasses and Simon the Australian Porn director (I actually have no idea what he does for a living but we decided that for that night, he was a porn director) - Location: Budapest.

These 2 I met (well I met them with another Simon who flew in from London to Budapest because he was a good travel buddy, but for the purpose of this blog post and emphasis on my bravery, let’s pretend I just met the rest of these people on my own while I was in Budapest) while having beers at a ruin pub near my AirBnB apartment on my first night on official vacation. I actually can’t remember how we got to talking but we ended up talking about good drunk grub, weirdest food in Manila, babies as a delicacy, how to recruit women and men for porn, and how Guys in Glasses Volume 1 would be a sure hit in the porn industry. We also talked about the worst superpowers a person can every have (e.g. being able to control rain, but you only get droplets) and not having plans at all. Guy in glasses was gonna go back to the US the day after, but will be back in Berlin for a job after a month. Simon, the porn director, has been on the road for months and has no plans of going back home anytime soon. I also learned never to call an Australian, dude. Of course, I called the Australian, “dude”, twice (even after being told not to do it). Force of habit.

3. Hungarian Girl and her Canadian boyfriend, Jordan – Location: Budapest

They were so cute together, my teeth hurt. They just met the night before I met them at Szimpla (another ruin pub) at girl’s cousin’s wedding. Jordan was there with his cousins and they got invited to the celebration. It was basically a meet cute. They asked if they could share the table and I said, yes of course. So I was the unwilling prop to their flirting. Soon enough, Jordan’s cousins joined our little group, along with this Norwegian guy who was sitting in the next table but decided to turn around and give away some Snus. Girl bought us a round of shots. Jordan was telling us about how he’s been on the road for 3 months, and ended up sleeping on a park bench in Oslo one time. He was a landscape architect so he felt right at home. We talked about how safe it was in Canada that he could leave his door unlocked with the keys in the ignition and still have his car there a month later. How these guys managed to get me on my feet and dancing to some random hipster song, I’m not sure. I blame the shots.

4. Submarine designer – Location: Budapest

The bar was about to close by the time this guy introduced himself. I think he was waiting for his friend, got bored and decided he’d talk to people instead. He was English (and cute, too). And then he said the 3 most wonderful words I’ve ever heard: “I design submarines.” Tell me that wasn’t amazing. Of course when he went into the details, like he does it using Excel, I kinda just started drifting off after that. In my head he was this really super cool engineer, with blue prints and shit. I forgot what else we talked about because I got stuck at submarines.

And then of course, there were the special mentions:

1. Guy who opened the door for me while I was at the Oslo office. He worked at the 2nd floor, I was going to the 3rd. Couldn’t get inside the building because you needed a keycard for that, so I ended up waiting for people to go in and I’d just sort of, slink in after them. He asked me about my work, he talked about his, and then that was it. He was just worth mentioning because he was cute and quite the gentleman.

2. Different guy who opened the door for me while I was at the Oslo office. I got stuck and couldn’t get out. Too many buttons! So he opened the door for me and shouted “You’re free!!” Hilarious.

3. Bartender in this random pub in Oslo I just happened to walk into who handed me my beer with a “here you go, love.” What a cutie.

4. Wait staff in Budapest who kinda felt sorry for me because I was on my own (it was a date place, apparently) and handed me my beer and dinner with a “enjoy, love.” And every once in a while asked me if “everything ok, darling?”.

 

It pays to be brave sometimes or at least in my case, forced out of my comfort zone.

Schipol Airport in Amsterdam and the rape of my heart

August 17, at 645am (AMS time), I landed in Schipol airport for my connecting flight to Oslo, Norway.

It was my first trip to Europe by myself so for the first time, I allowed myself to actually look around and take in the visual candy that was this airport. Previous trips were spent keeping an eye on my companion, making sure that I wouldn’t lose sight of her because I’m an idiot at airports and I would probably not know what to do if that happened — especially at Passport control.

So anyway, back to being all alone, hungry and exhausted after a 12 hour flight…

The shops were just starting to open. And people in uniform were milling about: pilots, cabin crew and most importantly, airport staff (and this included shop keepers).

Can I just say: Schipol Airport knew what they were doing when they decided to staff up with mostly good looking people. And by people, I only really gaped at the men.

The baristas at Starbucks. The airport caddie drivers. The immigration officers who stamped my passport (and my heart). Even the workers who were repairing the E gates were good looking.

Security check was pleasant. Because I forgot to take out the small liquid bottles from my bag, security officer asked it was ok if he opened my bag and go through its contents. Of course I said yes. Officer was pleasant and made small talk. And he was probably one of the most good looking boys I’ve seen within the past 48 hours. He asked me where I was going. “Oslo,” I said. He ended up going through both bags and then he smiled at me and said “All good! Have fun in Oslo!”

I should have asked him if he wanted to go with me.

Thank you, Schipol Airport for the gift of good looking guys at 645am. My connecting flight was delayed, by the way. But I couldn’t find it in me to complain.

Top 10

Based on a conversation I had earlier with my friend, Kumi.

Top 10 things one must never show to anybody else:

  1. Feelings
  2. (until 10) Irrelevant

 

Top 10 things one must always show a person of interest

  1. Chemistry
  2. (until 10) Tension

Fitness First (well second, really)

Amazingly enough, I’m still at this whole fitness obsession 1 week later.

I’ve reached my 10k steps/day goal. But I’m trying to make it consistent.

I’ve ran once (lol I promise you that’s a big leap from my always a couch potato routine). And I’ve been trying to increase the distance of the walks I’ve been taking regularly. Even my cleaning is cardio. I downloaded these 2 apps to help me with my goals. One for body workout and one for yoga.

Even my eating has been healthy. Except for when I’m back at home with my mom on weekends though. Which means I have to bring home my running stuff with me when I’m there to offset the food I’ve been stuffing in mouth.

I actually woke up extra early today to do my workout routine (and was not so pleasantly reminded that I need to buy a mat when my fluffy stomach met my dusty floor). When that felt like it wasn’t enough, I scrubbed my floor.

I feel good actually. I don’t think I’ll lose my flab by June (hello Barcelona beach, have you met my flab?) but waking up early to do something other than grunt and complain about how it’s too early for life is actually good for my mood the rest of the day. Even going to sleep exhausted (and not just because of work YEY!) feels lovely.

I should do cross fit next? No? Ok. Let me be consistent on this one first.

Tonight, I will try out my condo’s pool. I’m paying for it monthly! I might as well get my money’s worth right? But not if it’s full of people I don’t know. If it is, I’m going running. :)

Oh Hey It’s April!

It’s been crazy, 2014. And it’s only been 4 months. Welp! 8 more months of crazy!

In bullets:

  • Work’s been awesome! I’ve never been in this much high since… 2011?
  • Finally getting my hands dirty and learning more about Product Management.
  • I’ve spoken in several events (both internal and external) and I’ve presented so many times I don’t think I can be nervous about it anymore… I think.
  • I’ve been to Jakarta and Singapore.
  • I might be going back to Barcelona. I’ve fallen in love with this city. Take me back over and over again.
  • Oh and I’m going to Norway and Budapest in August.
  • Where to next, work?
  • I’ve met so many people. It’s overwhelming.
  • Made new friends. I’d like to think I’ve kept the old.
  • Sorted out several personal issues. I still have some major ones left to tackle, but I’ll get there.
  • I MOVED OUT! Well not completely. I’m just renting a condo now in Makati. 10 minute walk away from the office because I couldn’t take commuting in Manila anymore. 2 hours minimum to get my ass to the office. No thanks! I’m still gonna go home on weekends.
  • Have I mentioned that work’s been amazing?
  • I don’t think I’m going to San Francisco anymore. HULT can wait.
  • I’m trying to get back to that fitness regime. Not to look fabulous anymore but just to fit into my old jeans. :p
  • Trying to target 10,000 steps per day starting today.
  • Yesterday, my target was 5000. I reached it even before I got home.
  • Last night, I couldn’t sleep in my new condo. I guess my body just wasn’t used to that much space. But boy, did it feel lovely.
  • I woke up this morning and for the first time in years since I’ve been working: I’ve had time to have breakfast.
  • I don’t have any problems with being alone. I actually like it. When it’s 11pm and the building is quiet, and I’m on my own. I sit down on the recliner that’s provided by the unit, open the book and I’m good for the rest of the evening. I would stay that way all week if I could.
  • I miss my ate and my dad. They’d be laughing at me for being on this first time being independent high.
  • My job’s been pretty amazing. Can’t wait til Barcelona.

 

Yesterday’s # of steps: 7000/5000 (I forgot the actual count and I deleted it)

 

That SanFo Thing

Sometimes I get really mad because my circumstances (and lack of finances) prevent me from being San Francisco doing what I wanted to do: studying, living on my own and being a different person.

And then when I really think about it, I’m glad I’m not there and I’m here. Because if I wasn’t here, I wouldn’t be able to do all these awesome things or learn all these cool stuff and finally realize what my passion is: my work.

That sound cheesy and boring but it’s true. I really love Product Development. I’m not great at it. At least, not yet. But it’s something I really want to be good at. And I’ve been struggling to find that one thing I want to be great at for the longest time. And now I have. So I’m glad I’m still here. Discovering this. Learning by doing.

This is the first time I actually picked up a book that was related to my work and non-fiction. I even read the introduction. And I devoured it. Every single word. Excited to go back to work to see how I can make real what I just found out.

And it feels really good.

So yeah, maybe SanFo can wait. I have to be here now and do this.