Photolog – January 2010


31 January 2010

The Mabua Beach acrobat boys….
Surigao City

This fish wall decor made of shells is a product of a Canadian man’s passion for collecting shells around Mabua Beach
Surigao City

Drying clothes, Surigao style

Boat garage

Another boat garage

A fisherman’s daughter

The dramatic sunset at Mabua Beach

A village boy caught these two starfish just for my photo shoot. I asked him to throw them back to sea afterwards.
Mabua Beach

At sunset, all boats are moored inland and will, one by one, disappear again from break of dawn
Mabua, Surigao City

In the Philippines particularly in Surigao, girls as young as twelve do the laundry while their mothers earn a living. The mother of this girl has a makeshift barbecue kiosk where she grills fish for beach picknickers. Grilling a kilo of fish would earn her 25pesos.

30 January 2010

If Cuba has its vintage cars, Surigao has its vintage trucks
Ferry Port, Surigao City

Pedicure in the park, come rain or shine
Luneta Park, Surigao City

Like in Luneta Park in Manila, this one in Surigao also has the statue of Jose Rizal (national hero) in the center. The city cathedral towers in the background.

29 January 2010

Faith knows no bounds


Dinos, our Greek friend, enjoying his last few days in the burning sun of Surigao. He must! For when he goes back to Greece in few days, the icy cold winter will freeze his sunburnt skin away….

“Hand me the pair of scissors, please…”

This is not the first time that we were served this paper cutter. We had it in Dumaguete and Siquijor. Is this a Visayan thing? or a nationwide practice? What are they for? They are used for cutting the coffee and sugar sachets!

28 January 2010

Surigao is a jungle of coconut trees

The verdant, almost unspoiled province of Surigao.
Surigao del Norte, Mindanao, Philippines

The Mactan Processing Zone (on the left) seen from the air. As to the settlement on the right, your guess is as good as mine.
Mactan Island, Cebu

The amazing TURBOPROPS of Cebu Pacific’s ATR plane!

27 January 2010


The altar of the Basilica Minore del Sto Nino. This 16th century church houses the image of the Sto Nino which was brought by Ferdinand Magellan in 1521.Cebu City, Philippinesmagellancross.JPG

Inside the Magellan’s cross, you will find these ladies selling candles. Everytime someone buys a candle (or two, depending on the number of their petitions), these ladies will perform the prayer dance ritual and when it is over, they will then give the candle to the candle-buyer so he/she can light it at the foot of the cross.

24 January 2010


Gated communities in Mactan Island are sprouting like mushrooms! (But as soon as you get out of the gate, illegal settlements (squatters) are not far behind…..)
Mactan Island, Cebu, Philippines

23 January 2010

Day 2 of our arrival in Cebu, the General Manager of the hotel we were staying in threw a grand party. All guests were invited!
Mactan Island, Cebu, Philippines

Painted art at a public elementary school’s wall. There is a large Korean community in Cebu.
Cebu City

23 January 2010

We are staying in Mactan island and have to cross the bridge everytime we want to go to Cebu City.

Bridging the gap between Mactan island and Cebu mainland is the Marcelo Fernan Bridge.

It was built in 1999 to ease the traffic from the older Mactan-Mandaue Bridge


It is a cable-stayed bridge that has one of the longest and widest bridge span in the Philippines

21 January 2010

The airport boys of Mactan International Airport standing at attention while our plane was taxiing down the runway…

15 January 2010

We had enough time to kill before our ferry trip to England so we decided to stop at the village of Hautvillers in the Champagne region

This is the church where the famous monk, Dom Perignon, was buried

The tomb of the monk responsible for concocting what is now called Champagne

The statue of Perignon at the entrance of the restaurant just fronting the church

14 January 2010

I like your outfit, mademoiselle!

Macaroons from Macon

The artistic town of Valence

The vineyards around Lyon in winter

13 January 2010

We left the house this morning to start the drive towards England where will catch our flight to the Philippines. One of our stops is at the port of Valence where we visited our French couple friends who sold their mansion, bought a sailing boat and made it their home. The port grounds were covered in snow, all the boats in the marina were also covered in snow. But it was warm at our friends’ floating home as they have a wood-burning stove in the boat.

12 January 2010


10 January 2010

Around Christmas and two weeks beyond, you will see in French boulangeries (bakeries) and patisseries (pastry shops) cakes with cardboard crowns on them. They are called Galletes des rois or Epiphany cakes celebrating the Three Kings.

Epiphany cake on display

Our very own galette de rois

A tiny surprise such as this one is hidden in the cake and whoever gets it is declared King and wears the cardboard crown.

08 January 2010

Photos of Menton just at the start of the New Year:

Gelato at its best! Mounds upon mounds of rich and flavour-enhanced fresh and creamy Italian ice cream.

The green-themed La Cure Gourmande is always a feast for the eyes!

Another feast for the eyes, olive and almond oil based soaps in the shape and colour of fruits such as mandarin, lemon…

I thought they are perfume bottles….they are lamps, actually!

The famous limoncello of Menton. This is excellent as a digestif after a heavy dinner!

Back home…

Isn’t that too heavy to transport, Mr Citroen?
Roya Valley, France

07 January 2010

_ahoy.jpg ahoy22.jpg
The LookOut
Jardin du Palais Carnoles, Menton

06 January 2010


Saw this guy on the river today. He thought I have some bread for him so he came that close. Luckily for me, I have the camera so hop! that’s a nice close up, pretty boy! Unfortunately, I don’t know what breed of duck he is.
Breil sur Roya, France

05 January 2010


There’s snow everywhere and I thought of making a snowman, but midway, I changed my mind and made a snow pot of mint instead.


To all my loyal readers and to those who just stumbled upon this site today, let me wish you a very Happy New Year 2010!

Sorry for being offline the past few days. As part of my New Year resolution to be more “RESULTS-ORIENTED” this 2010, I have been very busy lately in creating my very own Flickr site. You may ask, what does Flickr got to do with being “results-oriented”? Well, for one, it can be my vehicle to gain even the minutest recognition of my photographic talent. I love photography and have accumulated tens of gigabytes of them and by posting my best shots on Flickr, it is like holding a Photographic Exhibition, albeit, ONLINE. I know there are already millions of more professional photographers doing it but that doesn’t stop me from taking my chance. As the saying goes, “If you don’t try, you will never know!”

Here are two of the images I have already posted there and you are most welcome to go on a virtual tour:


Bratislava, Slovak Republic
They were on a photoshoot at the castle grounds and I couldn’t resist taking a shot of this specific pose. This picture tells all: their happiness, their contentment. No need for a caption really.
To the couple above, please feel free to contact me if you want the original of this photo.

The blue lounge chair

My Flickr site

A Thai gastronomy in London

We’ve been in London lots of times but we always get disappointed about the food. We went to visit our Londoner couple-friends who invited us to a gastronomic tasting at a Thai restaurant in Forest Hill. The quality of the food, the ambience and the service are impeccable. We shall go back there again!

Welcome sign in Thai

I have loads of this umbrellas bought in Thailand donkeys years ago, this is an awesome way to display them!

Love that green chicken curry!

a very warm presentation!

Cocktails a la caribbean!

I like the cutlery…quite awkward to manipulate though

Hautvillers – Tracing Dom Perignon


Did you know that the famous champagne Dom Perignon is named after a 17th century Benedictine monk who discovered the bubbly brew from a cellar of an abbey.

Dom Pierre Pérignon was the cellar caretaker of the abbey of Saint-Pierre  in Hautvillers, a small village in the Champagne region.  In those days, the only wine produced were still and red.  It was during his  experiments that he came out with “sparkling” wine which gained instant popularity especially among the Royals and nobility. And everyone would say, “I’d like to have that bubbling wine made by Dom Perignon!” And the rest is history.


The statue of Perignon at the entrance of the restaurant just fronting the church


Hotel de Ville


He was buried in a section of the Abbey traditionally reserved for abbots.  His tombstone is the one on the left.

IMG_3711bThe Abbey of St Peter of Hautvillers.


Noticeable are the many Iron signs hanging from walls of most houses and establishments.  In the Middle Ages, these signs were aimed at passersby who cannot read.