Being So Immersed in Coloring My Secret Garden

My presence into the world of internet has been reduced for the past week.  This is because I have been busy utilizing my brain’s right hemisphere for the past few days.

No, I have not been reading a book but instead – believe it or not – I have gone crazy with a coloring book.  I know it sounds like another childish silliness, but this coloring book seem to relax me.

the book itself, uncolored, is gorgeous!

the book itself, uncolored, is gorgeous!

my first venture!

my first venture!

Secret Garden: An Inky Treasure Hunt and Coloring Book by Johanna Basford has so far been completely entrancing!  It has been the book that surprisingly calms me and at the same time enabled me to squeeze a lot of my creative juices.

I have yet to know or read an actual science that proves coloring in a coloring book makes the person happier or reduce stress.  But for me, it has been an effective tool for a blissful meditative escape from stress and pressures of daily life.

flowers and the "ipis" (as per nengkoy)

flowers and the “ipis” (as per nengkoy)

primary colors!

primary colors!

my next project...

my next project…

And after finishing three pages by simply coloring away to my heart’s content, I was chilled out to realize that there exist some creativity in me.  This book is so engrossing, it is like being so immersed in your own Secret Garden…

Aminin! Pang Nashonal Myusiyum ang gawa ko!

Catching Fire (The Movie): The Long Wait Is Not Over Yet

catchingfireposterWhile I fell on queue to buy tickets for the movie Catching Fire, I grasped and recognized that finally the long wait is over for the release to the sequel movie of Hunger Games.  It was a long agonizing wait!  The feeling of patiently waiting for its commercial release here in the Philippines was basically the same when I was awaiting for the release of the book a couple of years ago.

The film is definitely entertainingly engrossing and absorbing!  I even wanted to press my left hand’s three middle fingers against my lips then raise it while inside the movie house when defiant revolutionary people of various Districts were raising theirs to show their opposition to President Snow and The Capitol.

peeta & katniss on their way to the quarter quell

peeta & katniss on their way to the quarter quell

I refuse to make a review of this movie since there have been tons of reviews and write-ups about Katniss Everdeen, Peeta Mellark and this entertaining film.  Let me just say which part of the movie that I like most.

The best part of the movie for me was actually the end part of it.  It ends abruptly which will leave you wanting for more.  After being so engrossed watching on how the turn of events happened, the end part would make you realize and be reminded that the movie is a sequel awaiting a sequel.  The ending will simply haunt you.

If you think that the long wait is over, you definitely are mistaken.

Pakibilisan ang pag syuting…

From Selfless To Selfish Birthday Wishes 2014

World peace, good health for Nengkoy and the return of genuine happy smiles from all people severely affected by super typhoon Haiyan are my unselfish wishes for my upcoming birthday.

In terms of worldly materialistic birthday wishes, aside from ten million bucks, the following easy on the pocket tangibles would definitely make my birthday settle in high spirits:

a Book…

morrissey autobiography

i’m pretty sure this autobiography would be an interesting read

a CD…

with or without autograph, i would love to have this

with or without autograph, i would looove to have this

and an MP3 Player …

i prefer the yellow color... this would be nice to carry in my pocket while killing myself on a threadmill

i prefer the yellow color… its as small as a five peso coin. this would be nice to carry in my pocket while on a thread mill

 Wans a yir lang ang bertday! Kaya damihan na ang wishes…


House Rules by Jodi Picoult: A Worthy Story With Sloppy Ending

house rules by jodi picoultI am  glad that my first Jodi Picoult is the House Rules.  For one, there are only few novels I have that in which the story was written from the point of view of several characters including a boy with Asperger’s Syndrome, his brother, his mother, his lawyer and a detective.

The way the story ended for me was a bit of a disappointment.  It looks unfinished.  When I read the last page I thought there must be some page missing I even checked on the binding of the manuscript to see if some page were torn out.  Imagine after spending hundreds of pages learning and understanding the characters all of a sudden the author stopped and decided to abruptly end the story without patching up how an equally complicated scenario would be settled.

Nevertheless, the writing technique of Picoult is impressive.  Her switching into different characters after each chapter and her portrayals of these personalities in the novel were impeccable.  I particularly liked the character of Theo.  I liked him because he is the most human being in the story.  If Picoult would write a novel that concentrates more on this young man’s life, I would definitely read it.

Also, full credit should be given to Picoult for the superior research she has done on the topics the story tackled – asperger’s syndrome, autism, psychiatry, forensic science, law, litigation procedures, etc.  And the way she presented the details of these striking topics were also very impressive.  She was like peeling off the skins of an onion meticulously layer by layer.

Though with such a sloppy ending, House Rules nailed it in terms of being informative, entertaining and insightful.  I definitely was entertained because I would just toss it away (when my Asperger’s syndrome attacks) and would not finish reading it if I did not enjoyed it.

Nakakareleyt ako dun sa bida! Hahaha!

A Piece of Heaven At The Gates Of Hell

It was eleven thirty in the evening.  I woke up drenched in sweat for I forgot to switch on the air conditioning unit before I fell asleep.  It’s already the third week of May and yet the scorching summer heat still lingers here in Metro Manila.  With this roasting temperature, I am starting to believe Dan Brown when he wrote in his latest novel Inferno that found in Metro Manila are the gates of hell.

I tried but could no longer go back to sleep, I slipped into my old blue jeans and put on a freshly laundered singlet.  I proceeded outside the streets of “the gates of hell” to find anything that will cease the torridity off my body.

About a hundred meters away from my flat while walking through Vito Cruz Street I found an eatery.  It’s about to close but I begged the attendant to let me in for I want to order, guess what? Answer: Halo-Halo.

Yeah! There is a new Teresita’s branch here in hell-gate Vito Cruz!!!  It’s no longer just in the far away hell-gate Tomas Morato!!!

teresita's in vito cruz street, manila

teresita’s in vito cruz street, manila

alone inside this refreshment parlor, i did not hesitate taking these photos

alone inside this refreshment parlor, i did not hesitate taking these photos

these ladies must be canonized not as saints

these ladies must be canonized as saints or angels by the vatican

Of course I ordered the “Special” version, i.e. with “minatamis na langka” (sweetened jackfruit) only worth Php 95.  It’s not the generic Filipino halo-halo neither the typical Razon’s halo-halo.  Instead it’s of a grandeur version, that is, with heaps of chunky-to-the-bite banana, brutal portions of glutinous macapuno, the sweet viscous lumps of tasty langka, smooth shaved ice with super generous amount of the vicious and sinful leche flan.  I swear to God they have the tastiest halo-halo in all face of heaven, purgatory and hell.

don't be fooled by the lucid and incomplex look of this halo-halo.  heaven is lodged beneath those shaved ice

don’t be fooled by the lucid and incomplex look of this halo-halo. astonishing heaven is lodged beneath those shaved ice

After paying my bill and start to walk back to my unit, I realized that Tesesita’s Halo Halo is something that can be compared to a piece of heaven and that I am actually glad to be living here in the “gates of hell”.

Makasalanan sa sobrang sarap!

Looking For Alaska Is Inspiring

looking for alaskaThis is the second John Green book that I read this month.  Though it’s not as strong and powerful as The Fault In Our Stars, Looking for Alaska nevertheless is an inspiring work about life and death, about loyalty and friendship, and about the choices we must inevitably make during the tender ages of our life.

I like this book because of its uniqueness of not having a villain or bad person in the story.  Though this book is generally introspective, brooding and contemplative, the story is interspersed with fun hilarious episodes and laughable conversations among characters.

Aside from having normal human beings as characters, the compelling forces that made this novel very meaningful are the literary allusions.  John Green definitely was right in the money for every mention of dead yet admired and/or significant individuals’ last spoken words being mixed through the storyline.

Two connotations referenced in the book that truly stirred me were Francois Rabelais’ “The Great Perhaps” and Simon Bolivar’s “How will I ever get out of this labyrinth?”  Readers at the end will definitely be left with something to think about regarding these two rousing allusions.  I won’t explain further for I don’t want this write-up to be some silly spoiler.

Overall, this book is excellent and is well worth my time.

Eksayting nga naman malaman kung ano “Ang Dakilang Marahil”

Defending Jacob Is Splendidly Exhausting

defending jacobDefending Jacob written by William Landay is such a compulsive read.  The great story telling technique of the writer will make you bone-tired and muscle sore yet you would still wish to continue reading because it is so compelling it will leave you guessing right ‘till the end.  You would think that the story has concluded and the author was just wrapping up but at the last few pages even more exhausting bombshell revelations would crop up.

Defending Jacob is much more than a superb mystery crime novel.  It is also about family battling and striving to hold things together for the sake of an accused child. It will compel you to question yourself on how far would you go to protect your child or what would you do if it happened to your family or how are you going to handle it. You will definitely ponder your capacity for objectivity as a parent while you read this novel.  Furthermore, the style of writing is so effective it will make you feel how devastating and haunting it would be like if you would be faced with such horrific circumstances.  These poignant thoughts that percolated in my brain add up to the exhaustion that I felt while I read this novel.

Defending Jacob may be quite a disturbing story but it is indeed an insightful, informative and enlightening novel as well.  Bravo! It was one terrific read, it definitely kept my attention!