How Much Does a Toga Cost, Actually?

… Sorry, this isn’t about toga prices. Not literally. But I hope it’ll give you a hint on the price tag of education…

Date of Writing: 2015 April 02

Lots of people wonder why I only graduated today. It was because I could not afford a toga rent in 2013…

Okay, that’s the short version. Here’s the long one:

After high school, I had to wait for 4 years before I could step into college. During the first two years of “waiting”, I was in Manila, working on any job available… housemaid, yaya, sales girl, seafood plant worker, and a beer house waitress (yes, you read it right ).

It was during those years that my eyes opened at how harsh life can be for a mere high school graduate. I would ride jeepneys along with lively uniformed college students, and my eyes would pop out with yearning, my heart green with envy of the opportunity they have.

And then I found a nice man, 18 years my senior, who agreed to send me to college in exchange for an engagement. And so I got engaged and left Manila with a promise: that I’ll never go back there unless I hold a diploma in my hand.

But then my nice man failed to mention that schooling will have to wait (again) until we build a farm for ourselves out of his 10-hectare land. So I became a farmer’s “unmarried wife” for another two years, in the remotest part of Bukidnon province. For the first time in my life, I learned to use the farmer’s tools… plant, care for, harvest, and sell crops and vegetables. I even learned the ways of the wives of local native tribes. We would wait until a harvest is done, and then forage through what’s left in the corn fields, or rice straws after threshing… all under the unforgiving heat of the sun.

The calendar announced 2008 and my “inner monster” refused to wait any longer.

Not even our constant failure of rice and corn harvests or the disapproval of my fiance’s cousins could stop me from enrolling to college. Stepping into the gates of Bukidnon State University for the first time to take up my entrance exam felt like a fairy tale to me. I drank everything in, hungry and thirsty of the scent of school and everything it offers.

But first year was hardly a fairy tale. I would go home to the farm every other week, my little pocket hoping for some allowances, but sometimes there was not enough.

There were days that I’d have to harvest what’s left of the vegetable garden, or catch one or two chickens, carry them with me to the “barrio” (about 4 kilometers walk from our farm) and sell them from house to house, just so I’d have enough fare for a bus going back to the city. Sometimes, a whole week would pass by with only salt and plain rice for meals, but I was just too happy to go back to school that I just shrugged off every hardship thrown at me. Expenses on school projects seemed like a nightmare, but I managed to comply with the help of my then best friend, Kim Delfin, who’s always ready to lend me money.

For my first required summer OJT, I was fortunate enough to have it at “our” municipal hall. Though it meant I won’t need to spend on rent in the city, there was still the challenge of having to walk up to 8 kilometers everyday just to get to the municipal’s Human Resource Office where I was admitted as Computer Operator intern. Sometimes, there would be “little” adventures on the side when it rains hard and I’d have to cross angry rivers (with the aid of that little flashlight at the butt of a lighter) just to get home.

And since floods and “heat stroke” and occasional rice field cobras failed to kill me, I completed my first year in college… but was forced to stop for a year after that because finances were just not enough. I spent that year with my mom, whose employer opened a plant branch in Surigao City, and so I worked again as a seafood piece-rate worker.

After a year, “inner monster” woke up again and refused to stay any longer with the lobsters and frozen octopus…

When I came back in 2010, I faced the challenge of adjusting to a new batch of “alien” classmates, getting envious with my former batch mates who were already a year ahead of me… and still struggling with tuition fees. My pockets almost gave up again by just the end of first semester. Making things worse, I became a victim to robbery that left a minor knife scar on my neck.

But I refused to get crushed by circumstances and converted them to stepping stones. As soon as the culprit was caught, the native “Datu” who settled the crime demanded a sort of “damage fee” from the culprit’s family. And that damage fee became my tuition fee for the second semester! What better way to end a “tragedy”, don’t you think?

By the end of 2nd semester, It all seemed to me that two years is all I could afford to complete… until one of my classmates stopped schooling, and I became her successor to a scholarship (all thanks to Ma’am Marilou Ondap Espina who recommended me, and to then VPAA Dr. Cornelia T. Partosa who admitted me to the scholarship program).

I managed to pursue my two remaining years through the big help of Negros Navigation Scholarship.

Then came my Internship in OXIOR Inc. (formerly Doworth Corp.) in Cebu City. Because I could not afford to take my two required summer OJTs during my 2nd and 3rd year, I had to take all three of them in OXIOR, including the 490-hour internship. I finished after 8 months (by the end of August, 2013), the reason why I could not graduate together with my classmates in March that year.

A hard work rewarded, the company hired me immediately after my internship. I grabbed the offer, since I didn’t have any money to come back to Bukidnon anyway, which became the reason why I could not graduate in 2014, either.

Then came my regularization at work. With my supervisors, Sir Kenworth Sicsic and Ma’am Nympha Espanueva in all-out support, and with my ever instant “credit card” mom and all-time hero, Rachel Descalso, I managed to earn my keep and finally able to squeeze this day into my schedule… and budget.

Then there’s still the battle with INCs that greeted me as I stepped back into Bukidnon – unreconciled responsibilities caused by my 2-year absence. But all thanks to my understanding mentors, and with the ultimate support of my amazing chairperson Ma’am Rozanne Tuesday Gonzales-Flores, my name has finally joined the list of candidates for graduation… literally, in the nick of time!

And… that’s it.

I am 7 years late in wearing this toga. It’s been a long wait, but it’s all worth it, because now I can officially claim that I am Rose Eden S. Descalso, a graduate of BS Information Technology.

… and now that everything’s said and done, you may now forget my real name and go back to calling me Flame Denise! Thanks for reading 🙂

Why Fans Go Crazy About JKS’ Song “Darling Darling”

To some KPop and JPop fans, JKS’ song “Darling Darling” may seem like just another one added to their playlist. But for JKS’ loyal eels, it’s so much more than that. That is because “Darling Darling” is a song that Keun-Chan dedicates to his fans all over the world.

Most commonly, you fall in love with a song because you can relate to it… because it somewhat tells your own story, or sympathizes with the bliss or sadness you are going through. But when a song is actually dedicated to you, that gives it a super extra boost in winning a special place in your heart.

Our World Prince has been receiving tons of love from his fans through thick and thin, supported him through good news and bad news alike. So now it is his turn to show his gratitude in the best and sweetest way possible – singing a song especially written for them (and of course with some dance moves and cute gestures that makes him all the more adorable)!

So tell us, fellow eels, do you like this song as much as we do? And if you get a chance to request the next song from Prince JKS, what kind of song would you wish for? Let us know in the comments 😉

Music Video

Credits: JangkeunsukVEVO

Lyrics: Romanji

Darling Darling nakitaku naruno
kyu ni tumetaku sareru to
sono kotoba hitotu de mirai mo kawaru
kimi no risoh no koi tte nan desu ka?

matiawase eki ga tikazuku to dokidoki
mado uturu kamigata meiku mo kanpeki

day by day yamazumi no sigoto datte
kyoh no tame owarasete
kokoro ga isogu yo zattoh no naka de
sugu ni mitukeru no kimi no koto wa

Darling Darling uresiku naruno
fui ni yayasiku sareru to
sono egao hitotu de watasi wo kaeru
kon na ni suki ni natte mo ii desu ka?

aeru hi wa speed wo agete tick tack
chotto sita sigusa demo kizuku kan kaku

step by step “kangaeteru koto kurai wa omitohsi sa”
nan te ijiwaru na serifu amaku sasayaite
atama naderu no wa hansoku dayo

Darling Darling setunaku naruno
kyu ni dakisime rareru to
sono tuyoi tikara de watasi wo kaeru
motto suki tte itte mo ii desu ka?

hajimete no koi demo nai noni
kon na kimoti
motto motto soba ni itai yo

Darling Darling aitaku naruno
itumo mo denwa nai yoru wa
sono chakusin hitotu de asita ga kawaru
kimi mo konya onaji kimoti desu ka?

Darling Darling nakitaku naruno
kyu ni tumetaku sareru to
sono kotoba hitotu de mirai mo kawaru
kimi no risoh no koi tte nan desu ka?

Lyrics Source: Metrolyrics

Lyrics: English

English translation: tenshi_akuma

Darling Darling I feel like crying
When you suddenly become cold to me
Just a simple word can change my future
Tell me what your ideal love is

Heading for the usual meeting spot at the station, makes my heart beat faster
Today’s hairdo and makeup looks perfect through the reflection on the window

day by day a pile of work
I managed to finish all for today
I’m getting nervous
Even in the crowd
I can recognize you immediately

Darling Darling I feel happy
When you abruptly become kind to me
Just your smile can change me
Can I love you so much?

When we meet, the clock ticks faster than usual
Even a small sign I can notice

step by step “I already know what you think”
Whispering such a mischievous phrase sweetly,
it’s unfair to stroke my head

Darling Darling I feel a lump in my throat
when you unexpectedly hold me in your arms
That strong power can change me
Can I declare my love for you more?

This is not my first love
But I’ve never felt this way before
I wish to be with you longer

Darling Darling I start to miss you
When I don’t get a regular phone call at night
Just a phone call will change my tomorrow
Do you feel the same tonight?

Darling Darling I feel like crying
when you suddenly become cold to me
Just a simple word can change my future
Tell me what your ideal love is

Lyrics Source: Metrolyrics

From Tissue Rollers to Stylish Canisters

Don’t throw away those tissue rollers just yet! They deserve a second life. How about transforming them into pretty little canisters for your little bits and pieces? They’re very easy and fun to make. You get to save some cash against buying containers and organizers. And in the process, Mother Earth will be proud of you, too 😉

Don’t throw away those tissue rollers just yet! They deserve a second life. How about transforming them into pretty little canisters for your little bits and pieces? They’re very easy and fun to make. You get to save some cash against buying containers and organizers. And in the process, Mother Earth will be proud of you, too 😉

Things you’ll need:

  • tissue roller
  • colored papers (slightly thicker than plain bond papers)
  • adhesive tape
  • glue
  • scissors

Learning Korean through a Song – Teen Top (틴탑) To You

Since I’m a self-proclaimed multilinguist, and a brokenhearted fool (again), and obsessed with both, I thought:

… why not combine them and create a post for this long abandoned blog of mine?

And that’s when I started listening to this song for about 160 times (that’s 8 hours divided by the song’s duration which is 3 minutes), until I was able to come up with this one heck of a translation below. Geez, what an insomniac night it has been, but all worth it! The 한국의 monster inside of me had a wonderful time gobbling up new words! And now that she’s full, I can finally take my zzzZzs.

Wanna feed yours, too? Here you go… oh wait, just help yourself for some laughs at the “broken english” translation (the 3rd line of each). They’re mostly “word for word” and would sound nonsense more often than not. Don’t take those lines seriously and get your monster a constipation!

Digest it well! This is a very good song, I assure you 😉


To You

by Teen Top (틴탑)

We gotta go
Teen Top & Brave Sound

Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo
Hey to you to you to you now
Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo
Hey to you to you to you now

넌 ••••• 내 맘이 •••••• 들리긴하니 ••••••• 모른척하니
neon•• nae mami•• deulliginhani •• moreulcheokhani
you ••• my heart ••• do you hear •••• do you pretend
Can you even hear my heart or are you pretending not to?

왜 그리 •••••• 몰라 ••••••••••• 이 멍청한 •••••••••••••••• 바보야 •••• oh
wae geuri •• molla ••••••••• i meongcheonghan •• baboya •• oh
why so ••••• don’t know •• you stupid •••••••••••••• you fool •• oh
why don’t you know, you stupid fool oh

I’m falling down •• 점점 ••••••••••••• 깊어 •••• 져가
I’m falling down •• jeomjeom ••••• gipeo •• jyeoga
I’m falling down •• increasingly •• deep ••• low
I’m fallin’ down, getting deeper

니 •••• 그리움에 ••••• 너무 •••••• 숨이 •••• 막혀와 •••••••••• girl ••• 오늘도
ni •••• geurieume •• neomu •• sumi ••• makhyeowa •• girl •• eoneuldo
you •• longing •••••• too •••••• breath •• blocked •••••••• girl •• today
Because of my longing for you, I can’t breathe, girl again today

다들 ••••••••• 미쳤다고해
dareul •••••• michyeottdagohae
everyone •• was crazy (I is implied)
Everyone says I’m crazy,

그만 ••••••• 잊으 •••• 라고해
geuman •• ijeu •••• ragohae
stop •••••• forget •• is said (they is implied)
they tell me to forget you

그개 •••••• 안되자나 •••••• woo woo hoo, •• 도대체 왜
Geugae •• andoejana •• woo woo hoo ••• dodaechewae
it •••••••••• useless •••••• woo woo hoo, ••• why (in the world)
But that’s not easy, woo woo hoo, exactly why?

나도 ••• 지칠 ••• 것같애 •••••••• 시간이 •• 흐를수록
nado •• jichil •• geotgatae •• sigani •• huireulsureok
I •••••••• tired •• I think •••••••• time •••• goes by
I think I’ll get tired too as time goes by

변해가는 •••••••••••••• 내 •••• 모습을 ••••••••• 보는데
byeonhaeganeun •• nae •• moseubeul •• boneunde
changing ••••••••••••• I ••••• look ••••••••••• viewing
I see myself changing

It’s like •• 매일 매일, •••••• everyday ya
It’s like •• maeil maeil •• everyday ya
It’s like •• daily daily, ••• everyday ya
It’s like every day, every day ya

내 •••• 맘이 •••• 아파 •• 오는데
nae •• mami •• apa •• oneunde
I •••••• heart ••• hurt •• coming
My heart hurts

답답한 ••••••••• 맘을 •••••••• 니가 ••• 알리 ••• 없잖아
dapdaphan •• mameun •• niga •• alli •••• eopjanha
tight ••••••••••• heart ••••••• you •• know •• cannot
but you won’t know my frustrated heart

It’s like •• 매일 매일, •••••• everyday ya
It’s like •• maeil maeil, •• everyday ya
It’s like •• daily daily, ••• everyday ya
It’s like every day, every day ya

나 •• 혼자 ••••• 슬퍼 •••••• 지는데
na •• honja •• seulpeo •• jineunde
I •••• alone ••• sad •••••• on my own
I am getting sad alone

너는 •••••• 지금 •••••• 어디서 ••••• 뭘 하는데
naneun •• jigeum •• eodiseo •• mweol haneunde
you •••••• now ••••••• where •••• what is doing
but where are you and what are you doing?

Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo
Hey to you to you to you now
Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo
Hey to you to you to you now

오늘도 •••• 니가 ••• 없는 ••••••••• 방안에서
oneuldo •• niga •• eomneun •• banghanaeseo
today ••••• you ••• absent ••••• in the room (방 room + 에서 within/present)
Again today, in this room without you

하루종일, •••• woo hoo woo hoo, •• 눈물짓네
harujongil •• woo hoo woo hoo, •• nunmuljitne
all day, ••••• woo hoo woo hoo, ••• shed tears (눈물 tear + 짓네 to make it a verb)
All day, woo hoo woo hoo, ••••••• I shed tears

모든게 •••••••• 거짓말이야 •••••• 날 ••••••• 사랑한단 •• 말
modeunge •• geojitmariya •• nal ••••• saranghandan mal
everything •• lie ••••••••••••••• I/me •••• one love •• words/speech
Everything was a lie including you saying you loved me

바보가 •••• 됐어 •••••••••• 이렇게 •••• 나 •••••• 혼자
baboga •• dwaesseo •• ireohge •• na •••••• honja
fool ••••••• was •••••••••• like this •• I/me •• alone
I became a fool like this all by myself

야!… •••• 뭐?
ya!… ••• mweo?
Hey!… •• What?
Hey… what?

아 진짜 ••••• 나더러 ••••••• 뭘 •••••••• 어쩌라고?
a jinjja ••••• nadeoreo •• mweol•• eojjeorago?
Oh really •• you want •• what •••• about me?
So what the heck do you want me to do?

날 ••• 떠나 ••••• 얼마나 •••••••• 행복할라고?
nal •• tteona •• eolmana •••• haengboghalrago?
me •• leave ••• how much •• happy?
How much happier do you think you’ll get by leaving me?

끝이란 •••••• 한마디로 ••••••••••• 나는 •••••• 님이 •• 남이되?
ggeutiran •• hanmadiro •••••• naneun •• nimi •• namidoe?
finished •••• saying in short •• you ••••••• by •••• stranger / being someone else?
Can we become strangers again with just one word saying it’s over?

나는 •••••• 못하겠으니까 •••••••••••• 그딴건 ••••••••••••••• 바라지마요
naneun •• mothagesseunikka •• geuddangeon ••••• barajimayo
I ••••••••••• will not ••••••••••••••••• do a damn thing •• don’t expect
I can’t do it so don’t expect that from me

넌 •••••• 너무 이뻤어 ••••••••••• 널 •••• 만나 기뻤어
neon •• neomu ippeosseo •• nal ••• manna gippeosseo
You ••• so pretty •••••••••••••• I/me •• glad to meet
You were so pretty, I was so happy to have met you

하지만 ••••• 넌 •••••• 나와 •••• 달랐나봐, •••••••• huh?
hajiman •• neon •• nawa •• dallattnabwa •• huh?
but •••••••• you •••• out ••••• different, •••••••• huh?
But I guess you were different from me, huh?

널 ••••• 잊고 ••• 사느니 ••••• 나 •• ha.. •• 차라리 •••• 죽는게 •••••••• 낫겠어
neol •• itgo •••• saneuni •• na •• ha., •• charari •• jukneunge •• natgesseo
you •• forget •• living •••••• I •• ha… •• rather ••• dying ••••••••• would rather
If I have to live while forgetting you, I’d rather die

It’s like •• 매일 매일, •••••• everyday ya
It’s like •• maeil maeil, •• everyday ya
It’s like •• daily daily, •••• everyday ya
It’s like every day, every day ya

내 ••••• 맘이 •••• 아파 ••• 어는데
nae •• mami •• apa •• eoneunde
my •• heart ••• hurts •• coming
My heart hurts

답답한 ••••••••• 맘을 ••••••• 니가 ••• 알리 •••• 없잖아
dapdaphan •• mameul •• niga •• alli ••••• eopjanha
tight •••••••••• heart ••••••• you ••• know •• cannot
but you won’t know my frustrated heart

It’s like •• 매일 매일, •••••• everyday ya
It’s like •• maeil maeil, •• everyday ya
It’s like •• daily daily, ••• everyday ya
It’s like every day, every day ya

나 ••• 혼자 •••• 슬퍼 •••••• 지는데
na •• honja •• seulpeo •• jineunde
I •••• alone •• sad ••••••• on my own
I am getting sad alone

너는 •••••••• 지금 •••••• 어디서 •••• 뭘 하는데?
neoneun •• jigeum •• eodiseo •• mweol haneunde?
you •••••••• now •••••• where •••• what is doing?
but where are you and what are you doing?

Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo
Hey to you to you to you now
Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo Whoo woo hoo
Hey to you to you to you now

All I can say is
Please give me one chance to make it right?
This song is… to you

Here’s a bonus:

To download the song:

And to watch the music video (please be a good angel and hit “Subscribe”. Don’t worry, it’s 틴탑’s official channel, not mine):

English translation (broken):
Google Translate

English translation (not broken):

The rest:
My plain common sense 😀 😀

Phew! And now to sleep. I need to self recharge, you know, ‘coz I’ll be singing and dancing to the tune of this song for another 160 times (or more) when I wake up.

PS: If you love Teen Top too, or if you’re also brokenhearted (or if you just happen to hear me snore), just leave a comment or violent reaction below. g’nyt 😉

White Squall – A Movie Review

So, my friend and one of “my boys” (that’s what I’m fond of calling them as I have appointed myself as their official keeper) in the house I’m currently living in bugged me yesterday to watch this movie and help him come up with a movie review afterwards, that’s why I have discovered it.

We watched the movie in The Porch, my favorite part of the house, accompanied with a bag of Marty’s Cracklin’ and a big plate of Nissin’s Pasta Express Creamy Carbonara. And after that, came my very first one-page A4-sized movie review:

White Squall Cover
Image Source: Allflac

Although the story did not take much effort on building every individual cast, still, it was successful enough in portraying each one of them in becoming unforgettable characters.

Chuck Gieg, one of the ship’s student crew and the storyteller in the movie started off and has has maintained to be a neutral type of character – not standing out, not lagging behind. I agree with one of the boys saying that he’s like a glue, making people around him stick together.

The bad boy Dean Preston was annoying enough at first, but gradually grew into an admiring character as the story progressed, being able to accept his weakness and accept help from the very ones whom he used to bully.

Skipper, the ship’s captain, is a type of mentor that the more he becomes difficult to please, the more you would want to please him. This is because he undoubtedly earns respect by proving the wisdom behind his every action. This was best portrayed on the part when he forced Gil Martin, a boy with acrophobia to climb up the sail of the ship. He did this to quickly confirm the boy’s fear of heights, and at the same time make him realize that he has to overcome that fear in order to do his part on the team.

White squall portrays vividly how happy adventures combined with harsh experiences can create a bond between people of different economic backgrounds and personalities. Even the tragic end to the crew’s adventure with the ship was not strong enough to break this bond that was formed among them.

One valuable lesson that this movie brings is that in forming a team, aside from following orders of the team leader, one must not look at his comrad’s strength as a reason to be competitive, but rather look at it as a healthy challenge to also offer the best of his own. Also, one must not look at his comrad’s weakness as a reason to see himself superior in any way, but rather look at it as an opportunity to help and be a part of the other person’s self-improvement. Just like how the ship Albatross’ motto goes “Where we go one, we go all”, being a part of a team means setting aside the desire to stand out and focus on striving to be a part of a bigger entity, by being responsible not only of oneself, but of each other, and realizing the value of friendship, the only thing that remains when everything else ends.

Oh, and I must add:

If you’re a seaman, or a marine or nautical student, or a girl (like me) who’s in love with one of these boys, I recommend you watch this movie. (wink)

Chicken Salad Mania – The Better Version

Chicken Salad by Flame
Chicken Salad by Flame

Last week, I had my first attempt at creating a home-made, cheaper than ever salad. If you have tried making your own using that as your guide, then you may have felt something was missing after you’ve gobbled up your bowl of greens. In fact, there was, indeed, some bits missing in that recipe. So this time, I present to you my second – and better version of Monday chicken salad dinner.

Living healthy doesn’t have to be expensive. All it requires is creativity, resourcefulness, and loads of fun.

My salad experience gets better and better with every bowl! Well, okay, let’s not get carried away. After all, I’m still on the first month of my “one-salad-dinner-a-week diet”. It was self resolution I started 2 weeks ago, along with my daily yoga and semi-vegetarian diet.

SaveMore Salad Package
SaveMore Salad Package

For this week, I decided to try out something way better than the ones before. So earlier today I was there, pushing my blue cart and strolling inside SaveMore Supermarket.

I picked items from shelves as I went down my well-prepared grocery list. Intentionally, I picked my salad ingredients last to preserve their freshness. And when it was time to gather my greens, I went to the vegetable section. The process turned out to be a lot easier and faster than I expected. That’s because I have noticed a package right next to the ball of lettuce I was about to pick. When I checked it out, it was a salad package complete with a Caesar Dressing, to my great delight! And it’s got more varied slices of fresh veggies than I was planning to buy.

What Went into my Chicken Salad

Cucumber with Skin
Cucumber with Skin
Onions, Carrots, Corn, and Turnips
Onions, Carrots, Corn, and Turnips
Seedless Green Tomatoes
Seedless Green Tomatoes
Caesar Dressing
Caesar Dressing
Chicken Salad Ingredients
Chicken Salad Ingredients
Vitamilk Soya Drink and Chicken Salad
Vitamilk Soya Drink and Chicken Salad

I got all of these for only Php75.00. Okay, okay, that costs Php7.50 more than last week’s salad, but what a small amount compared to the added colors (and nutrients) I got, right!

Same as before, all I had to do was to mix everything. Since almost everything were already sliced into bite-sized chunks, the preparation went a lot faster.

How long did we prepare the other salad last week? 20 minutes? Well, this one took only 10 minutes, and presto! Here I am, blogging as I munch on salad pieces in between sentences!

That bottle of drink on the side?

I’ve read a lot of shocking facts about diet drinks and the not-so-good effects of their artificial sweeteners, so I switched to Vitamilk Black Cereal Soymilk this time to go with my salad meal.

More from the Background

Earlier, I had my once a week “eat-anything-I-want lunch” at Orange Brutus. Unaware that I’ve successfully reduced my preferred meal size in just a matter of one week, I was stunned at how large the chicken pieces they serve! I ended up asking the crew to pack for take out one of the 2-piece chicken I ordered. That’s the chicken that ended up mixed into my salad.

By the way, if you plan to do the same thing, make sure not to include the breaded chicken skin. Only the white meat strips should go into that bowl or else, your salad will taste like fast food! It won’t be as healthy as you would intend it to be. Better yet, just use plain boiled chicken, sliced into bite-sized cubes.


Flame and her Chicken Salad
Flame and her Chicken Salad

There you have it! Try this, and you’ll definitely find it more delectable than the first one. Next week, maybe we’ll to find more variations in preparing our salad mania. I can hardly wait!

Brunch at Orange Brutus

It is my self resolution that by the time I finish my OJT and leave Cebu City, I have already dined in most of its restaurants, if not all. So on a Friday morning of February 22, fresh from my 2nd to the last graveyard duty for the week, I changed into comfy summer outfit, rushed to an ATM for my allowance, and decided to check out Orange Brutus.

Outside, the tiny restaurant looked nothing more special than its neighbors McDonald’s, Chow King, and Pizza Hut. In fact, I would say that it’s the least inviting for hungry tummies, because the sound of its name was more like dessert to me than main course. Nevertheless, I gathered my resolve and went in. The door was opened by a slightly chicken-eyed security guard, smiling enthusiastically as he greeted me “Good morning, ma’am!” That livened up my spirit and has tremenduoulsy lowered down the turn off effect the wet floor near the door could have made.

As I ordered, I noticed a transparent shelf displaying round cakes, mostly chocolate, right next to the counter. That was rather unusual, I thought, still having the perception that I’m inside a fast food chain like Jollibee. I received a manually written official receipt of my order, which is another unusual thing as I am used to receiving computerized ones. The cashier had no computer in front of her.

I settled down on a round table near the glass wall, as I always prefer natural light when eating.


After waiting for about ten minutes with my order still not coming, I regretted not bringing one of my books. For me, it’s such a waste of time sitting down for that long without doing anything except watching through the glass wall some people passing by outside. So I asked the guard to look after my order when i t arrives, and went outside to buy some newspapers. After paying the vendor Php25.00 for an issue of The Philippine Star, I went back inside Orange Brutus, and amused myself by reading the front page, as my order still hasn’t come.


After reading about UNA junking away 3 common bets for the upcoming senatorial elections, a uniformed waitress finally approached my table, settling my order in front of me, and informing me that my mashed potato order for take out will just come later. I thanked her and started on munching on vegetable strips from the side of my dish.

I ordered boneless bangus (milkfish) in mushroom gravy served in a sizzling black metal plate rested in a flat, oval, wooden holder, an extra rice which was served heart-shape, and a large glass of Sprite for drinks. It’s almost like a fast food type of meal, except that it was not fast.



I ate my meal rather heartily yet slowly, as I alternated my spoonfuls with the newspaper reading. The bangus was wonderful. It’s one hundred percent boneless, and the mushroom gravy with a pint of butter flavor complemented the slightly salty taste of the fried fish. It was one simple meal I appreciated along with the cozy ambiance of the restaurant and its friendly staff. I really wouldn’t mind visiting the place again soon.

Orange Brutus is located at Ma. Cristina Bldg. Fuente Osmeña, Cebu City. They also have branches at Capitol Site, Ayala, Gen. Maxilom Ave, Robinsons, Cebu Doctors, P Del Rosario, Elizabeth Mall, and Sm City.

(My apologies to the poor quality images because it was only taken using my Nokia L3000. I am so looking forward and hoping to having my very own digital camera soon.)

What Means the World to Me

Here’s a very nice song I recently discovered:
The other day when someone asked me
“Are you living your dream?”
 I didn’t know what to say.
I honestly had to think…

It’s a beautiful song, and I have found it fitting to be dedicated to the world prince. Read and listen to the rest of the lyrics and song through this fan-made video featuring Jang Geun Suk:

Tech-Filled Dusk

I woke up around seven in the evening. I just recovered from a mild cough and fever which struck me early this morning before I went to “my sleep” (I’m nocturnal, by the way). After taking a bath, I packed what I needed and went out.

I stopped at the ATM Machine near the exit gate of our university to get my allowance for the week. After that, I went inside the school premises, stopped at the Data Center’s Kiosk Machine to check on my grades. Only one grade has been added since last week, which makes a total of four uploaded grades out of ten. Then I headed on to NR2, my favorite room when it comes to internet surfing, and checked if it was unoccupied. But before I entered the room, I went to the coffee machine first at the entrance of University Library buliding. I dropped two five-peso coins, and in less than ten seconds, I was heading back to NR2, sipping my coffee. As soon as I’ve set up my place – the teacher’s table at the center – I began my way to the Wireless Fidelity connection and started my internet session.

Just then I realized: Technology sure dominates every part of my life one after the other. Not only mine, but a lot of people out there, as well. Just imagine what could my early evening has been without these technologies…


Without the ATM Machine, I won’t be able to get my allowance, because banks and remittance centers close at five in the afternoon, or earliear than that – of which times, my soul is still roaming the land of dreams. Without the Kiosk, I will have to wait until Monday, and beg the University registrar to give me a dummy of my grades. Without the coffee machine, I will have to boil water and make my coffee, and drink it before I can leave the house, which would chew up valuable minutes from my internet session. And without the WiFi and my laptop, I’d be in the internet cafe right now, squeezing all I can get from my limited hours session, which would also chew up a part of my limited allowance.

I’m just glad I was born in the information age.