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After returning back to the Philippines 5 years ago, I am settled comfortably in my home country, working in the government - inspiring young minds. Hello Ciao!

Reviews written

since 31/01/2007


What do you think of the Olympic Games 2016? 13/08/2016

Finally after 20 years the Philippines got a silver medal in Rio

What do you think of the Olympic Games 2016? I DO LOVE THE OLYMPIC GAMES! I am a solid supporter of this sporting event which happens every four years. Believe it or not, I did sign the application as a volunteer in the 2012 London Olympic Games. Unfortunately, I did not join due to my decision of going back home immediately after the completion of my postgraduate study program in Northern Ireland. I am not an athletic person, but I do a healthy lifestyle by having regular activities such as running/walking, swimming, and playing badminton since I was an undergraduate student. I also watch local sport activities. Luckily, I was able to watch live the Australian Open in 2003, the Wimbledon in 2010 and the US Open (Preliminary rounds) in Los Angeles on the same year. Ironically, I am still wishing that someday, I will be one of the spectators of the Olympic Games. I am not totally depressed or disappointed for not having watch the Games. Why? With the advanced technology that we have now, we can watch the event via "live streaming" and other websites that provide up-to-date information about the Game. For example, in 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, our university arranged the "live streaming" by allowing students to watch the opening ceremony of the Games in the the big screen inside the sports auditorium. It was full-packed by students, especially by Chinese nationals, took pride as the host country. Aside from watching it on TV or other media forms,in what other ways I support or promote this international sporting event ...

The Olympics - M.Jacque Rogge, L'Equipe 12/08/2016

Photographic memories of the greatest athletes of the Olympics

The Olympics - M.Jacque Rogge, L'Equipe I LOVE THE OLYMPIC GAMES! This is the reason why I bought this hard-covered table book for only 5 sterling pounds (current price of 325 Philippine peso) - a big bargain from its original price of 25 sterling pounds (1,625 Philippine peso). I bought it from Stewart Miller store in Belfast (Northern Ireland) years ago. Generally, a table book is doubled the size (approximately 10.5 inches x 10.5 inches) of the ordinary book and it is usually with a hard cover. The book is normally displayed in a receiving area of an office or the living room of our homes which allow guests or visitors to browse and read it while waiting to be entertained. It contains pages of colorful and stunning images/photos with artfully lay-out captions and blocks of texts to emphasize the description or articles related to the illustrations and graphics. Majority in my table book collection were books related to photography and travels. But this one is exceptional! When I said “I love the Olympics Games,” I do watch this international gathering of best athletes around the world. Well, I watch it on television (cable channel). Not all of the games, but I do watch swimming, badminton, track and field events, lawn tennis, gymnastics, and diving. Prior to the 2012 Olympics in London, I was based in Northern Ireland and did plan to watch and I even signed an application form to participate as a volunteer during the event. Due to unavoidable circumstances, it did not happen. Actually, the table book was the ...

House Rules - Jodi Picoult 09/08/2016

When disability is under legal scrutiny

House Rules - Jodi Picoult THIS IS NOT MY FIRST NOVEL BY JODI PICOULT. Her books are always a delight to read, and this novel has the best plot gauging it from my previous readings such as of My Sister's Keeper, Perfect Match and Second Glance. House Rules is an engaging novel that allows readers to understand the emotional and psychological conditions that confront the characters which is very effective to get the interest of finishing the book (I think so...). Initially, for the first 100 pages of the book, I was tempted to temporary abandoned reading it. But then reaching the middle part of the book, my enthusiasm is building-up considering that I initially did some preliminary conclusions of what happened to Jess' disappearance/death; consequently I found out that, well almost 100 percent I got it right! At that point of my initial assessment of the events, I jumped to the conclusion that Picoult is not clever enough to sustain the suspense element of the story that I was able to predict the outcome of the investigation. On the other hand, Picoult is perfectly intelligent enough to motivate her readers to bring their own initial investigations and validated at the end of the story. The focal point of the story is whether a person suffering from Asperger's syndrome can be convicted of a crime or can be acquitted because the suspect is not capable to validate that his action is right or wrong? As the story progresses, I cant resist to do my own judgment from the evidence presented, and Picoult ...

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W55 08/05/2009

***Paparazzi cyber-shooting with Sony***

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W55 SPRING AND SUMMER ARE THE BUSIEST TIMES of the year for travelling and I can not imagine myself of not having a digital camera to take photos during these seasons. Camera is always my priority gadget to be carried along both in travelling and attending important gatherings. Despite the threat of Swine Flu this week, I could not stop myself planning my next trip to Scotland (where the first case of the infection started in the UK) in June. This is also the time again to test and prove that Sony DSC W55 has the "x-factor" - topping the digital chart. The model hit the market in the early of 2007 and I bought it in April of that year. My brother influenced me to buy this unit after I have used his W70 model when I forgot to bring the battery charger of my old Olympus IR500 during my short visit to the Philippines. There are no major differences in the functionality between these two models (W70 and W55), except for the price which I chose the cheaper one in Curry's at a promotional offer of £149.99, excluding the memory card and carrying case. Having used this unit for almost two years now, it really served its purpose - documenting my passion in photography as well as my interest in filming. This is the reason why I want to share my experience on its functionality that is comparable to other brands available in the market today. The highlights of my review mainly focus on the things beyond the basic specifications of the unit. I discovered them by accidental or ...

If I could... 08/02/2009

If I could have the best job in the world

If I could... I AM VERY DESPERATE to change my work environment at the moment. I started this research work 3 years ago and Im struggling to finish it. No regrets of doing it but as time passes by, my focus and determination to complete is totally diminishing which worries me. Anyway, as early as of this new year, Im now in the process of looking for possible job opportunity, hoping that at the later of the year, I will get the "best job in the world" offered by the Queensland Tourism as the "island caretaker" of the Great Barrier Reef GBR), Queensland, Australia. The location is not new to me since I lived in Brisbane for 2 years but I did not able to visit the Reef but maybe this time, I will be able to visit GBR because of this best job posted online which also catch the imaginations of the people around the globe. What is this global job search? I found the online ad thru Yahoo!news on the 12th January - when Queensland Tourism (QT) announced the new position - island caretaker of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR). The online application started on the 10th January and will end on the 22nd of February. Everybody is invited to apply as long as you have the following qualifications. What are these qualifications? Well QT emphasized that there is no definitive educational and experience requirements, thus a broad range of experience will be accepted. However, the successful candidate should possess: 1. good swimming skills 2. enthusiasm for diving and snorkeling 3. good written ...

Unforgettable Islands to Escape to Before You Die - Steve Davey & Marc Schlossman 17/12/2008

Dying to explore these islands before I die

Unforgettable Islands to Escape to Before You Die - Steve Davey & Marc Schlossman BEFORE BBC BOOKSHOP was closed permanenttly in Belfast last year, I bought several books and DVDs for a half price from the store. In particular, I collected 3 out of the 4 exciting series of books written by international travel writers, Steve Davey and Steve Watkins; and photographers, Marc Schlossman and Clare Jones. Briefly, these travel books include the following: Unforgettable Islands to escape to before you die, Unforgettable Journeys to take before you die, Unforgettable Things to do before you die, and Unforgettable Places to see before you die which I am planning to purchase this Xmas. First, I will be sharing to you the fourth title published in 2007, entitled Unforgettable Islands to escape to before you die! Why the Unforgettable Islands? Well, just to give you first a background of my origin. I was born and raised in one of the 7,107 islands of the Philippine archipelago? Where is Philippines located, by the way? Having a review of geography, my home country is just 3 hours away from Japan and Singapore by plane and almost 5 hours from Australia. Also, this is where Mylene Klass' mother and Nicole Scherzinger's (Pussycat Dolls) father came from. People who are living in the Philippines are known as Filipinos and the country got its name from Spain - colonized "Filipinas" for more than 300 years. In other words, I am an islander who loves the beach, coconut trees, waves, sunset, coral reefs, forest, cool breeze and rivers! The environment I grew up was ...

Apple iPod Nano video 4GB Third Generation 19/10/2008

My pod caters to 1,000 artists

Apple iPod Nano video 4GB Third Generation MUSIC IS AN INTEGRAL PART of our way of living. It is an art form that transcends differences and boundaries. It is indeed a human expression being passed from one generation to another. With the technological advancement, music is much easier shared and very much enjoyed by everyone. From the ordinary turn-table to a radio cassette recorder, and from walkmans to portable media players, our favourite songs can be played at our own convenience, either inside our homes or while walking in the parks. In the latter part of 2001, music became closer to our daily routines - 24/7 activities of work and play when Apple, Inc. launched its iconic brand, iPod. To date, iPod showcases the latest trend of portable digital audio players - from screen-less to touch-screen gadget, including its latest product line, iPod touch. It is fascinating to know the evolution of this stylish music gadget. Apple, Inc. has marketed several models - commonly known as "generation" which differ by functional features, storage capacities and sizes as briefly enumerated below (source:Wikipedia): 1. Classic: It has four generations, from the mechanical scroll wheel to the coloured screen and photo viewing. 2. Mini: It has two generations, from the click wheel to longer battery life-span 3. Nano: It has three generations, from flash memory connection to video-viewing capability 4. Shuffle: It has two generation, from no screen to smaller clip design 5. Touch: The latest/first generation has wi-fi ...

Samsung SGH U600 29/09/2008

SAM truly delivers

Samsung SGH U600 'THE SELECTION OF HANDSETS TODAY is mainly influence by individual's preferences on the main features of the mobile models and the package deals offered by various store dealers and network providers. It is a "pick and match" option where the chosen phone is paired with various network providers - offering a bundle of monthly usage of minutes and texts for cheap deals. When I visited Phones4U store in 2006, I was contemplating back then to have another Nokia handset but when I saw the latest model of Samsung P300 on display, and without any hesitation, I signed a 12-month's term with O2. The contract covered unlimited calls and text for 25 pounds per month. When this contract expired last year, I decided to have a new contract with Phones4U for a longer term - 18 months. Again, I chose the handset that stood out from the rest of the units on display, another Samsung model, SGH-U600. Unfortunately, I could not have O2 network for this handset, but Orange instead for 25 pounds and 225 minutes and 100 texts. Please note that Phones4U requires every contract to have insurance policy at 9.99 pounds per month by direct debit, otherwise I will not be able to get the deal for the unit. I had it a go for a month in desperation to get the contract approved, but after that I phoned the insurance provider (Policy Administration Services Ltd) to cancel it but persuaded me to have the 2.99 pounds a month for the sim card insurance. Well, finally I decided to totally cancel the ... 01/12/2007

~~It's draining my savings~~ ON-LINE SHOPPING IS INCREASINGLY dominating the market today. Believe it or not, every household with broadband connection has experienced transactions and purchases through the internet. Majority of these activities are done using either direct debit or by credit cards. At a glance, it makes things easier and it is less time consuming; however, it is scary due to unscrupulous usages and charges that most of us are not aware of. Until you find out that it is happening to you! I attempted several on-line purchases and majority of these transactions were with Amazon using my dooyoo vouchers. Some of them were clothing websites, and recently with photo imaging/processing services, VISTAPRINT (VP) in particular. ***What's in it? Vistaprint (VP) offers on-line printing of personal and office stationeries like rubber stamps, letter heads, invitation cards, post cards, business cards, return address stickers, notepads, sticky notes, etc. According to the website, VP has more than 18 offices worldwide and specialised for customised printing through the internet in places like the UK, Italy, Netherlands, Australia, Ireland, Canada, Spain, France, and the United States. After searching from the web, it seems that this is an American firm, however I could not find a definite contact details about it which is quite unusual for an on-line service. This leads to poor customer relations in dealing with complaints which the company is under fire nowadays despite having a ...

Digital Photo Magazine 31/10/2007

~~A post-halloween treat from Digital Photo!~~

Digital Photo Magazine BLACK & WHITE are always together. These colours bring varied meanings and have been used for several occasions. B&W are our popular motifs to respect our loved ones who passed away showing our deepest sympathy and mourning. Black is the absence of light. It is indeed the back draft of the night when creatures, monsters, aliens and corpses come alive and scare the living. With the white full moon glows in the night watching the terror of demons, and listening the cries of the wolves and the victims in the wilderness convey suspense, horror, shock and disbelief. Black represents the dark side, blindness, magic and spells, curses and witches, cults, evil and the unknown! But on the other hand, white shows the brighter side of darkness - light, the presence of colours! White represents purity, cleanliness, healthy living, simplicity and holiness. It is the motif of the angels from heaven, the friendly ghosts (like Casper), the beautiful lady in the 'balete' tree, the bride-to-be waiting for the groom to take her hands in the altar, or even our hardworking doctors and nurses and the Wimbledon tennis players. These are some of the things that I could think why 'black and white' are influential in our lives. Being a photo hobbyist, B&W is something unique and it could graphically and effectively illustrate those different perceptions by using camera. I could also relate B&W to mono images which I am happy to share my thoughts on the various special editions of "Digital ...

Samsung SGH P300 19/10/2007

My engagement with simply irresistible S model

Samsung SGH P300 HAVE YOU TRIED TO be engaged for a fixed one-year period with a celebrity model? Well, everyone does nowadays to get a full benefit of hassle-free relationship, easy to manage terms, and be popular with friends. I am referring to my 2006 service contract with O2 and the incredible, slim, stylish and top of the line Samsung handset, SGH-P300. WHY SGH-P300? Prior to my engagement with this eye-catchy S model, I have 2 existing Nokia mobile phones with pay-to-go scheme and all of them have one in common - small and they were once best units in the high street. So, I have to maintain that criteria for new ones. Looking for a new set always requires several visits to the phone stores and this is really a tedious process for me. Not to mention of browsing available on-line consumer sites like dooyoo and ciao to get invaluable feedbacks from distributors and existing users. When I saw this model on display at Phones 4U, I can't get my eyes on it and it was a ''first love as first sight'' moment experience. It was true! Until now my admiration to this credit card or business card size gadget did not change even after my contract ended in June 2007. As the saying goes, ''our relationship is getting stronger every minute, every hour, and every day!'' Our first touch was electrifying and unexplainable - that's the way I can describe it. No exaggeration, but I was really struck with the overall package of SGH-P300. As my left hand gripped this thin combined ...

A Chorus Line 13/10/2007

~~A nonstop singular singing-dancing sensation~~

A Chorus Line LAST SUMMER I had the chance to watch this musical in the US. Having spent a long holiday in California, I had the opportunity to watch this phenomenal stage production before it will be scheduled to open in Broadway late of last year. A Chorus Line is a 1975 Broadway production that captured more than six million people worldwide during its 15 years run. I was lucky enough to witness its first revival shows in San Francisco's Curran Theater. It was a last minute decision to watch on the last few days of the show, and I did not face any difficulty to secure a good seat at $45 in the balcony section of the theatre. This legendary Tony Awardee's musical is a story based upon the lives and experiences of a group of Broadway dancers auditioning for the chorus of a new show. A group of girls and boys tried their luck to take part in the long exhausting process of selection by telling their personal stories - their talents, their families, their dreams and their fears to make it in the final production. Unfortunately, I was not able to watch the original cast and production, but I found out that the 1975 show won 9 Tony awards (1976) including the Best Musical and the Pulitzer Prize (drama). Nevertheless, the remake was really a non-stop singular sensation production from the original choreography and direction of Michael Bennett to the new direction of Bob Avian, who happened to be the co-choreographer of the original staging with Bennett. This new production has 13 ...

Footloose, London 10/10/2007

~~Everybody loves to sing and dance~~

Footloose, London FIRST OF ALL, I have confession to make. Maybe some of you will notice that this product is categorised within London Attractions. Prior to my posting, few months ago I submitted a new category based on Ciao rules. Unfortunately, I was directed to this link instead of creating another link. Well, again some members will argue that posting my review is not in the right category, however I tried to create one but Ciao disapproved it which I think with valid reason. Nevertheless, I am happy to share to you my musical experience with Footloose staged in Northern Ireland and Philippines. FOR THE SECOND TIME around I watched Footloose( The Musical) in the Opera House, Belfast, Northern Ireland early of 2006. The show did a limited engagement around the UK and had a week run in Northern Ireland. I watched the production for the first time in 2005 prior to my trip to Belfast at the Meralco Theater, Manila, Philippines. This is an adaptation of the film (of the same title) released in 1984 starring Kevin Bacon, Footloose was one of the classical-teenage films like Dirty Dancing, Flashdance, Fame and Grease. It was first adapted for the Broadway production in 1998 and had its debut UK tour in 2004 which could be compared to other screen-to-stage productions such as Fame and Saturday Night Fever, or even the newly musical Dirty Dancing that opened this year. The Story It revolves in the life of a teenager, Ren McCormack who happened to moved out (together with his mother) from ...

False Impression - Jeffrey Archer 30/09/2007

~~My first impressions were wrong!~~

False Impression - Jeffrey Archer After his imprisonment, Mr. Archer was able to write another crime and law enforcement story, quite similar to his previous work, "Shall We Tell the President" which I did a review as well. Mr. Archer also managed to write three Prison Diaries - Hell, Purgatory and Heaven while he was in jail. "False Impression" (2005) is much more interesting to read compare to the former (Shall We…), considering that the latter has something to do with 911 (Sep 11) bombing in New York, and I think everybody has still the vivid memory of what happened on that day when America cried and the world was shaken! Three weeks ago, another memorial ceremony was held after the tragedy happened six years ago. I thought this review is worth sharing here in Ciao. There are 8 main characters in the story headed by the beautiful, athletic, artist, intelligent, successful, honest and ambitious woman, Dr Anna Petrescu working in a bank (Fenston Finance) located in one of the Twin Towers. Her life is in danger on the final stage of the negotiation/transaction with her new client, Lady Victoria Wentworth, the daughter of the late General Sir Harry Wentworth (Earl of Wentworth) in London. Unfortunately, without the knowledge of Anna, the heiress died before the 911 bombing and she is set to meet her to discuss the final arrangement for the debts and inheritance, including the art collection - one of them is the art of Van Gogh. Another problems strike - Anna was fired by her boss in connection of the ...

Everything that starts with W ... 24/08/2007

Waste: How we perceive it today

Everything that starts with W ... WASTE MANAGEMENT (both domestic and industrial wastes) is a primary issue of our time due to its significant contribution to global warming and to some extent to extreme flooding in towns and cities. Due to improper collection, treatment and disposal of this waste, it brought a lot of environmental and health implications which affected the lives of thousands of people and cost billions of money in legal remediation costs around the world. But over the years, there is a dramatic change in waste management - from the 'end-of-pipe approach' to a comprehensive system, the 'cradle-to-grave approach'. THREE YEARS AGO, I did a research on how to identify potential sites as location for the final resting place of our wastes which we commonly known as 'landfill' or land surface disposal area. Upon completion of my research, I found out that there are three major groups of people that influence in the development of a disposal site or landfill. These groups have 'power' in providing directions towards successful management of our wastes, consequently in addressing global warming. For the suceeding paragraphs I will try to illustrate these existing attitudes or norms among these groups, namely: the public (you and I), the industries/businesses (companies that provide our basic needs), and the elected political leaders (the politicians who decide how much we pay for our taxes) and find out their 'true colours' in managing our wastes. ***THE PUBLIC ATTITUDE: NOT IN MY ...
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