Saturday, December 3, 2016

Annyeonghaseyo Korea

I have been to this beautiful country several times already. It even became my home for two years. But my recent visit was something of a "first" for me. (One of my goals before turning thirty was to travel alone.) On the night of the 4th of August, I embarked on my first solo trip. I have booked this trip several months ago, so you can just imagine the excitement when the day finally arrived. This also happens to be the trip where I got the cheapest promo for my plane ticket (P3,600 or $72 back and forth already). Few days before leaving though, I was too nervous for the very same reason that I was excited - This is my first time traveling alone and I want to make sure that everything would be fine, that I would be safe, that I would meet new people, and enjoy every moment of it.

While I was on the plane, majority of the passengers were Koreans and only a handful were Filipinos. I don't know the exact reason but I felt like I was really all alone at that moment. Add to the fact that I was even seated next to a young, Korean couple. So the best thing to do was just sleep. Haha! Then, there was a game in the plane. The stewardess ask some fun questions about the expressions or things millenials say and I got to answer one of them. They asked about the meaning of LOL, TBH, among other things. How fun was that? A Korean lady, seating opposite to me, asked me about those things. She's genuinely interested and it was nice talking and explaining all those stuff to her. When we arrived in Busan, we talked some more while in the bus going to the airport. She just had a vacation in the Philippines. She's very friendly and I couldn't believe I've met and talked to a new person on my first night in Korea.

Shortly before midnight, I arrived in my guesthouse, located in Gwangali Beach. I hadn't had dinner yet but the first thing that I did after putting all my things in my room was to go to the beach, which is just right at the opposite of the guesthouse. I couldn't believe I made it. I was right in the middle of my first sole adventure! Standing, with the sand on my feet, err, shoes, seeing the beautiful surroundings, inhaling the fresh, summer breeze, was a perfect welcoming moment.

Annyeonghaseyo Korea!

Past midnight, I had my dinner at a coffee shop (dinner = sandwich).

Did a bit of walking after in the surrounding area before going back to the guesthouse in the 9th floor. The walls of the elevator are transparent so while going up, I could see the beach and the people and the the Gwangan bridge full of lights and they are all beautiful.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Tadashi Shoji Pre-Fall 2016

Fashion will always be my happy pill. A new favorite designer I've recently discovered is Tadashi Shoji (see his website here). I am, in particular, eyeing the Pre-Fall 2016 collection. Being a type of person who's not a fan of over-the-top designs, I really appreciate that this collection is simple yet full of intricate details, feminine yet doesn't show too much skin, full of blacks but rich hues are also added.

(all images are from Tadashi Shoji's site)

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Blues and All That Jazz of Grad School Pursuits (More of Blues Though)

It's a cold and gloomy and rainy Saturday morning and I am sitting here in a coffee shop listening to some Christmas songs being played in the cafe's speakers. Gosh, Christmas is just a few weeks away. In other words, the year is almost over but I am still here. It's as if I am still in the same place when the year started. There's no major breakthrough whatsoever. A lot of the people I know are already living their dreams but here I am. At this point in my life, I have only dreamt of one thing - that is to get into graduate school, do my PhD, and be a full-pledged scientist. It's very frustrating when I feel like I have already done so much but all my efforts seemed futile.

I remember, at the start of 2016 (literally on New Year's Eve), I began emailing professors inquiring if they have an available PhD position. A word of caution, it's not a good idea to do what I did. Do NOT email professors on a holiday! For the next couple of months I've been looking at different graduate programs in different continents. I wanted to do a PhD study on the molecular aspect of Alzheimer's Disease so I've been looking at a lot of neurology programs, emailing neurology professors, and applying to several neurology Masters or PhD studies but to no avail. Two things: either the professors do not have a vacant position or I get rejected into my application. It's depressing to receive news like that. More so if it happens not just once, not just twice, but several times. It's like a never-ending cycle - inquiring, emailing, applying, then being rejected. I have to admit, it's so depressing, I get too emotional, I cry. I cry alone and I prefer it that way than cry on someone else's shoulder. Of course, keeping it all to myself is also not a good idea, so sometimes, I talk to some of my friends about it. I'm very selective, so I just tell it to people whom I know understands what I'm going through, or those who have been on the road that I'm into right now. Doing those two things really helped.

While experiencing those emotional ups and downs, I was also reviewing for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). The GRE is one of the requirements when applying to graduate schools in the United States. So even if I was emotionally drained, I had to pick myself up Halfway through the year, I realized there's a 0.00000001 probability of me being accepted to a neurology program so I changed my direction. I looked at molecular medicine programs, molecular biology programs, even back to plant molecular biology. Researching the programs while emailing profs while applying to scholarships while reviewing for the GRE is not an easy task. Add to that, that I also have a job. After a day's work, instead of relaxing at night, I still need to do some graduate school hunting and studying for the GRE (and in some nights, unleashing the dramatic side of me a.k.a. cry). The weekends are also spent like that. You know the drill. Haha!

So, basically, that's what my whole 2016 is all about. There were some fun things that happened on the side though, travelling with my family in May and my solo trip to South Korea in August (which I still haven't blogged about yet). As of now, I'm still looking at graduate programs, still reviewing. I just wish that one day, I will receive some good news - that I get accepted somewhere, where I will grow as a scientist and also as a person.

Wish me luck guys! And, please pray for me.

Whatever you're going through right now, I wish you well on your pursuit of being. We can do this! We will rise above the challenge! We will never give up!

Monday, November 7, 2016


Another one added to my (future) wedding playlist! 

But, seriously, my life is currently full of stress right now, this song/cover is one of the few reasons that keeps me a little bit less anxious.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Where did the time go?

It's already the last week of October!!! *me into a panicked frenzy*

Guys, I'm just droppin' by to say Hello! I hope to get back to writing/blogging (e.g. travel posts, life reflections, and random thoughts) once I'm done with the busyness of life.


image source here

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Today marks another low point in my life.

I cried a little.

I'm afraid though that I'm starting to get used to it.

But then I remember this...

image source here
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