The Early Bird Catches The Early Plane

6 10 2008

Last Friday, our female co-workers requested that we accompany them to the airport for their trip the following day. Although we are usually gentlemen *ahem* we were a little reluctant because their flight was at around seven in the morning. This meant that we had to be at the airport at around five… and it is almost close to impossible for my two housemates to wake up that early on a weekend. Still, our gentlemen instincts took over and we ended up saying “Yes”

At first, they wanted us to pick them up at five but, being the pessimistic guy, I told them that we need to be there a little earlier in case “something crazy” comes up. It took us awhile to get their stuff loaded into our cars. Boy, did they go on some shopping sprees… As we were leaving, I motioned for them to go ahead of us since they still have to return the rental car. 

I drove around the airport thrice before I asked Franz (who was in his sleeping clothes) to get out and start looking for them… and I still had to drive two more times before I finally saw them. Apparently, there were some issues with the paperwork of the car rental. I dropped off their luggage and asked my housemates to accompany the ladies to their respective airline counters (since they had different routes) and that I would go around one more time. 

Three more rounds and still no sign of my housemates. I knew something was up. Finally, I saw them… but still with one of our ladies. At first I thought that her flight was canceled but apparently, she had some issues with her luggage (thanks to those shopping sprees I bet). The airline was asking her to pay a whooping $600 for excess weight. Whoa! I pulled up the car but since this was a no stop zone, we just starting grabbing things out of her luggage and throwing them into the trunk. 

This time, I told them that I’d give them a good fifteen minutes before I circle back. I found myself a gas station and grabbed a bottle of Starbucks Mocha because I was just so sleepy. I picked them up, who had a couple more items in their hands (from the luggage), and we finally left the airport at almost seven. 

All I can say is, good thing we decided to shave off those couple of minutes… Whew!

Note: Apologies for the corny title. =P


New York! New York!

12 11 2007

I’ve already posted a couple of entries about my first trip to New York but never found the time to post any pictures.

Here goes:

 New York Trip

Plus the video that made Dids want to jump off the Empire State Building 😉

Other NY posts:

Blogging From Google New York
Worst thing about GTAC?
I Love New York!!!
I Love New Yorkers!!!


1 09 2007

Manila.. I’m coming home to Manila!

Yup, after more than 160 days, I am finally coming home. Although I am not too thrilled about the 27 hour trip home, I am pretty excited about surprising Alaine. She actually thinks that I am on an another business trip to Dallas. =)

I guess this is the perfect time to look back and get mushy on the trip. Yes, it was hard being away from family and loved ones for an extended period of time, but somehow I was able to have fun along the way.

The best part, of course, was all the traveling I did. I was able visit some new (and exciting?) places. The “legendary” [Chicago trip] will go down the history of Navitaire as the craziest road trip done by Manila employees on an onshore project. I was also able to visit LA and see Universal Studios, though the best part was seeing Chien and Nick again. Sure, we’ve all changed since the last time we actually hanged out together but it was still great meeting up.

I was also to go to [Dallas] on a business trip to [Southwest]. Well, I did not really go around but this was the first time I went on a client visit so it was pretty cool. The nice thing about it was that our Service Account Manager told us that the client thought the trip was worthwhile. Yet again, the best thing about the trip was meeting up with Sharon, a high-school buddy of mine whom I have not seen in 13 years.

The last trip was the [New York] trip which I have already talked too much about so I will leave that as is. =) The only bad thing of course is that I did not get to meet up with the rest of the people I planned to meet, [She, Joy, Manre and more.]

I guess all that’s left is to thank the people who helped make this a good trip. My family and loved ones who supported me in this trip, especially Alaine who tirelessly called up and sent me load when I needed it. Our tour guides in Chicago, LA, Dallas and New York for taking us around. My roommates Jeremy and Dan for the late night chit-chats and farting competitions =) The Austin team (special mention to Susan Benites and Mike Arguello) who made me feel welcome. Last, but definitely not the least, I’d like to thank Dids and Lei for letting me hang out and bug them nightly, trusting me with their driving lessons and trusting me with their secrets.

Thanks y’all and see ya soon…

A jet-setting week

18 08 2007

Hmm… Ok, I don’t think I really fit the description of being a jet-setter, but I’ll stick with it for lack of a better term.

Anyway, the next two weeks will be a lot of traveling for me. Here’s how my itinerary looks like:

  • Aug 20 – 22
    • Fly from Austin to Dallas, TX
    • Official business trip
    • Hopefully meet an old buddy from high school
  • Aug 22 – 26
    • Fly back to Austin at noon; Fly to New York in the afternoon
    • Attend a conference – this is worth another entry
    • Meet with Michelle
    • Hopefully meet other friends (She, Joy, Manre, etc)
  • Aug 27 – ?!?
    • Tentatively another official business

Fine, this may be a regular thing for most people but my line of work does not really entail a lot of traveling so this is pretty exciting to me.

For my friends who are in Dallas and New York, let’s meet up…

My roomie is sick

1 07 2007

I did not mean that in a medical or mental sense.. although the second meaning comes pretty close (just kidding, guys!) Actually, he is just feeling a little homesick. Well, maybe not a little but really feeling homesick. I must admit that I, too, feel lonely once in awhile but I guess my experience back in high school made me stronger as far as being away from family and loved ones is concerned.

Here’s a pretty cool song that my roomie sent to us. It pretty much described how he feels:

MANILA by Amber Davis

Lyrics from Lyrics Ko ‘To!
(Take me back to the place I love
Take me back to the place I love, uhuh uhuh huh
Take me back to the place I love
Take me back to the place I love, uhuh uhuh)

I remember when were kids
Having barbeques in the bukid
When the brownouts came, we were never alone
We just played in the streets till the lights came on

Six o’clock in the mornin’
Bakery just opened
We can smell the bread, it was cooking from a mile away
Ain’t nothing like a fresh piece to start your day in…

Manila (Manila, Manila)
I’m comin’ back to Manila
(The only place that I call home, home)
I’m comin’ back to…

Manila (Manila, Manila)
I’m comin’ back to Manila
(The only place that I call home, home)

Signal to the jeepney (pick me up)
Take me to the place where (I grew up)
Back to the kids in the park where we played all day
Some had a shed for a home but it was all okay

‘Cause in Manila, we’re all the same
Everybody’s waiting for things to change
In the barrio, that’s how it is
We didn’t care much ’cause we were kids, oh

(Manila, Manila)
I’m comin’ back to Manila
(The only place that I call home, home)
I’m comin’ back to…

Manila (Manila, Manila)
I’m comin’ back to Manila
(The only place that I call home, home)

I’ve been gone for a minute but I’m on the next flight
And the plane man says we can make it by night
Can’t wait to touch down in my old hometown
Had a girl, we used to kick it but I doubt she’s still around, yoh

It’s all good ’cause I’m back in the jungle
Where the girls in bikinis all come in a bundle
And pain and poverty is everywhere
But when the smoke all clears, it’s only love in the air

I’ve been gone too long

Gone too long
I’m comin’ home (comin’ back to the place I love)
Gone too long
I’m comin’ home (comin’ back to the place I love)
I’m comin’ back to Manila

Yo yo yo yo
I say, babalik ako sa Manila, Manila
Babalik ako sa Manila, Manila
Babalik ako sa Manila, Manila
Babalik ako, babalik ako, babalik
Babalik ako sa Manila, Manila
Babalik ako sa Manila, Manila
Babalik ako sa Manila, Manila
Babalik ako, babalik ako, babalik

I’m comin’ home (Manila, Manila, Manila, Manila)
I’m comin’ back to Manila (comin’ back to the place I love)
I’m comin’ back to Manila (Manila, Manila, Manila, Manila)
I’m comin’ back to Manila (comin’ back to the place I love)
(Manila, Manila, Manila, Manila, Manila)
(Comin’ back to the place I love)
Comin’ back to the place I love
Comin’ back to the place I love
Comin’ back to the place I love

I found a copy you can download on Multiply.

All My Bags Are Packed, I’m Ready To Go…

15 06 2007

Yes, sireee! My colleagues and I took a couple of days off and we are heading to L.A., California. Don’t worry, we are not driving this time since we found some really affordable rates on ExpressJet.

Luckily, I was able to convince everyone to pick this weekend as it will allow me to attend the PhD graduation rites of one of my oldest buddies, Pino. I have also made plans to meet up with other friends like Nick, Jamie, Ayn, Ricky, Jhason and a couple of other friends.

If you are near the area, let me know. You can get in touch with me through my colleague’s friend (who was kind enough to play our host) Pedro, at 714-478-9535. (I will be deleting this number after the trip to make sure that he does not get bugged by tele-marketers.) Of course, you can still SMS me through my roaming Philippine number at +63 915 5164868. Please try not to call me though as the roaming charges are insane.

See ya around!!!

Finally, a long weekend in Austin…

13 06 2007

Since my colleagues and I were assigned here in Austin, we have missed about a week’s worth of holidays. For those not from Philippines, we have more than 20 National Holidays this year. So, when we realized that Memorial Day was gonna fall on a Monday, we immediately started making plans.

It started out with the idea of heading down south of Texas to Corpus Christi (about two hours away) or maybe South Padre Island (about six hours away). At least that was the plan a couple of weeks before but, as they always do, our plans took a sudden change.

To make a long drive/story short, we ended up driving to Chicago. Yes, Austin to Chicago and back in 3 days. If y’all are not familiar about how far Chicago is, imagine driving from Manila to Davao and back to Manila… twice! That’s a total of almost 2,500 miles. Yes, my dear friends, we were that crazy. In fact, when we were introduced to our office mate’s wife during the outing last weekend, she said, “Oh! So you are the crazy folks from Manila who drove all the way to Chicago for the weekend!” And just last week, when we were introduced to one of the directors, they quipped that “they made there mark by driving to Chicago…” (I have more stories like these but you get the point..)

Yes, it was definitely a crazy trip. Something that I would really think long and hard about doing again. But, at the same time, it was really worth it. Sure the 24hour drives took its toll on our body but the scenery that went with it was really awesome. We even passed through a bridge above the Mississippi river (did I spell that right?).

MJSure we only got to spend a day in Chicago but we enjoyed every minute of it. Our sincerest gratitude goes to Kuya Boloy and his family. They really went all out in taking us all over town. They took us to the United Center (the picture on the right is the primary reason why the long trip was all worth it), the Millennium Park, the Buckingham Fountain and even treated us for all our meals, that Jim’s Polish Sausage was awesome. Christina and Julius were also terrific hosts. Not to mention Ate Ditas who, although at work, was constantly on the phone with Kuya Boloy, very concerned about our tour. Again, thank y’all for making that one day in Chicago a day to remember.

More pictures to follow…