Septic Tank

I am not a big fan of Indie Film but I am a huge fan of Eugene Domingo.  I’ve seen most of her commercial films but this is the second time I’ve seen her act on an Indie Film and I was referring to the movie “Ang Babae sa Septic Tank”.  Her first indie film I’ve seen is 100 days. Both indie films were pegged by Direk Chris Martinez  but the former is in collaboration with Marlon Rivera and both won best picture for Cinemalaya.

I wanted to watch this film and most of my friend who saw this movie will commonly say that this is a must-see movie even if you’re not a fan of an Indie Film. And because I am a fan of Eugene, I really need (take note: Need!) to see this film. So I went to Eastwood, meet my ex-office mate named MC aka Jozef Galvez.  If you’re just wondering, MC stands for Mariah Carey since he impersonate Mariah on his gig and yes,, he’s a gay! So we’re off inside the movie house for the 5:40pm time slot.

Sequence 1. Wide shot. Exterior. Day. blah blah. This is the first scene of the movie, no frills, no sound effects, just pure talks (wow very Brocka!) This movie is about 3 aspiring film makers who believe that that they have a winning script to make it big internationally. Their plot is about poverty in the life of an ordinary woman raising 7 kids in the dumpsite of Payatas named Mila, played by Eugene Domingo.  Oh boy she is unbelieavable superb in this movie no wonder she was able to get the best actress award for Cinemalaya. One of the favorite scenes in this movie is when she is sharing to the 3 films makers that there are 3 types of acting. First is the elevator acting. Second is the TV Patrol acting. And third is As Is Where Is acting.  She did it all with ease! I really can’t stop myself laughing when she interpret these acts. She is so super talented be it in comedy or in drama not to mention she’s intelligent too!  But the highlight of this movie is when Eugene unconsciously fell inside the septic tank which is full of shits and still she continues to act inside the tank! super funny scene! 🙂  Another job well done for Eugene!

If I have 10 thumbs in my hand, I would say this movie is 10 thumbs up!  ~~~08.13.11 / Eastwood Cinema, Quezon City

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Nibbling our way to Chinatown

It was a gloomy Saturday morning  of August 6, Pinoy Volunteer Group decided to do a walking tour within Chinatown in Manila and this free tour is offered by Jeffrey Yap, also one of our fellow volunteer. This is the first time that the group had a non-volunteer activity.

The sun cannot be found in sight, but the good thing is it is not raining either. We don’t want to rain obviously because we will be having our tour on foot.  Before we start our tour, Jeff gave us an orientation and told us that aside from museum and temple tour, we will also visit 5 food stops for food tasting.  All smiles when we hear the word FOOD!, since most of us decided not to have our breakfast at home since we will indulge ourselves on Chinese cuisine.

Our first stop is The Calvo Building located in Escolta built in 1938. It has a museum inside where you can see photographs of how an Old Manila look like.  Special added features are the amazing collection of antique bottle and newspaper publication. It is really amazing how they were able to keep and preserve it for the young generation. A good place for an educational tour.

And who said there’s no Movie Theater during this era? well think I again, this Capitol Theater is very popular among movie-goers.

The highlight of this tour is food tasting… the most-awaited! Our first stop is Sincerity Cafe and Restaurant where we feasted on the authentic Chinese Premium Chicken. By far this is one of the best chicken I ever tasted. I am not a food critic but this chicken is sooo delicious and I wouldn’t mind recommend it to my friend to visit this place. It looks very simple, like an ordinary fried chicken, but once you taste, you will definitely ask for more!

 

Our second stop is New Po-Heng Lumpia House. By the name itself, obviously we will be eating lumpia. I was hoping before we enter the restaurant I said to myself it should be lumpiang shanghai because I don’t eat fresh lumpia. But taraaann… they serve fresh lumpia to customers. Of course I don’t have a choice, it’s either i’ll eat it or watch my friends eat their food. Oh boy this is a food tour so I don’t have any excuse not to taste it just for a bite! Well very simple, if at first bite I don’t like it, then I will not eat it!  But unbelievable, I was able to consume it in less than 10 minutes and my friends don’t believe me that I don’t eat fresh lumpia.  Well this is the first time and I won’t hesitate to go back again to this place. Another resto that can be recommended to friends.

Before heading to our third food stop, we spotted some of an unusual scene that can only be found in Binondo.

       

Our third food stop is Dong Bei Dumpling Food House. They serve different kind of dumplings and this time we will try their traditional steam dumpling and the not so traditional pancake dumpling.  When Jeff told us that we will eat pancake, what cross it to my mind is the usual pancake serve for breakfast. At the back of my mind I was thinking to my delight that we will be eating something sweet this time.  Again I was surprised, after eating steam dumpling, they serve right infront of me is the pancake dumpling. It’s called pancake mainly because they serve it like a pancake itself.  Dumplings here are okay just like similar to any chinese resto who served dumplings.

Fourth stop is Masuki Mami House. Their specialties are mami and siopao which were the staple food for an old Chinese family.  This time we will be tasting their asado siopao. Yummy!!!! taste even better than kowloon. Another place to recommend! 😛

Before we headed to our last food stop, we went to Chinese Buddhist Temple. We were accompanied by a chinese boy named Willy. Their temple is a sacred place for them where they say their prayers, meditate and offer food to their Buddha. Inside the temple you can find a big table in the center with chinese ornaments in it. We noticed several heart shaped made of wood on top of the table and in front of it are small pews all line up. The thing is you will get a pair of those wooden piece, you will kneel down on the pew, make a wish then shake that piece and throw on the floor. If both piece fell on opposite side, it’s a yes. But if it fell on the same side, it’s a no. Most of us wanted to try that traditional chinese ritual and we did not notice that we were already creating noise inside the temple. Some of us laughing, some of us kept on trying over and over again just to get a yes as an answer. This Chinese old lady notices our noise and scolded us. She told us it’s better to leave the place since we’re not respecting their temple.  We don’t really intend to make a noise inside the temple it’s just that we were just carried away with this chinese ritual that all of us wanted to try. We left the place and apologize to the old lady.

Our last food stop is Ling Nam Restaurant. This restaurant is popular that can be found on the malls within the city. Our last meal for the day is Beef Wanton Noodle Soup!  Save the best for last! You can never leave Chinatown without tasting their wanton! What a way to end this tour,, burp! 😛  ~~~08.06.11 / Binondo, Manila

Haribon Tree Planting

PVG decided to join again another tree planting activity with Haribon Foundation in Cavinti, Laguna. This would be the second time that our group would be joining but it would be my first time to join this activity.

Rowell and Angeline organized this activity. We decided to rent 2 vans, one meet-up in the north headed by Rowell and the other in the south headed by Angz. I belong to Rowell’s group since I came from the North.  Our meet up time is around 4:30-5:00am, since we need to arrive at the site by 7am for the orientation before the actual tree planting activity. I think it’s in the system with the Filipino for being late. Since we’re still waiting for latecomers to arrive, our van left Cubao area at almost 5:30am to meet up the second group at SLEX for the convoy. We lost our way to the site but manage to  finally found it.  Our vans  wont be able to go to the exact location so we need to walk on muddy roads to reach the planting site itself. It takes about 1-2kms of walking before we finally arrived. Obviously we are already late since Thaddy from Haribon is already conducting the orientation. Groups from different organization join this activity. Thaddy acknowledge our presence inspite of us being late. We started tree planting almost 9am already but we managed to finished around 11am. Whew that was too fast!!! More than a hundred people join this outreach.

      

      

  

      

      

    

After the tree planting activity, we decided to had a side trip in Daranak Falls. It’s my first time to visit. I am not really an avid fan of falls but I really prefer lake. Daranak Falls is located in Tanay, Rizal and is part of the Laguna watershed. As we entered the park, we would notice arrangement of stones scattered all over since this place is also popular for rock balancing. It’s also an attraction that awe tourist because it takes discipline and skill to balance a stone on top of each other. Surprisingly, even if it’s rainy season, there are many people having picnic at Daranak, it must be a popular place for a weekend visit especially for those living in the east.  We spend about 2 hours there to go for a swim before we headed back home.  ~~~07.30.11 / Cavinti, Laguna