Glaciers Galore! – Golden Princess Cruise Day 5

The fifth day of our cruise was another sea day, which meant that we stayed on the boat all day.  However, instead of simply being out in the open sea, our cruise took us to the Glacier Bay Basin.

Only two cruise ships are allowed to enter the basin each day to ensure that it is preserved. Rangers from the park were allowed to board our ship that morning so they can provide the guests with facts and trivia about the place.

When we entered the Horizon Court that morning we saw this right outside our window:

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We were excited to get a closer look so we quickly inhaled our breakfast and went out on deck

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Guidelines for the tourists

The view from the deck:

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There were lots of people out on deck taking pictures of the glacier

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It was pretty cold that day.  The crew set up a small shop near the ice cream bar where you can buy jackets and other winter gear in case you forgot to pack yours

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There were also crew members going around serving drinks to warm people up

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That’s the Margerie Glacier behind us

IMG_2277Closer look

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Occasionally we would see parts of the glacier breaking off and falling into the water

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The ranger told us that the falling ice tells us the direction of the glacier’s movement

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We were also told to watch out for birds flocking around where the ice has fallen. (I forgot why. Something about the ice disturbing the water, which causes the fish to gather there or something …)

It was very cold out on deck.  And it was raining too!

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Week 47/52 : Eighty Eight

I was able to squeeze in this simple photomanipulation in between checking exams and reports last week. I had a difficult time with the blending in this one, but I think the final image looks okay. I’m still not completely satisfied with the shadows on my feet though.

I only have 5 more self portraits left for my 52-week project this 2014. I’m confident that I’ll be able to complete them in time since I’m done with all exams and checking. I only need to finalize my grades, submit them, and my semester is finished :D I keep reminding myself to be extra careful in my computations so I won’t have to go through the grueling process of requesting a change of grade from the university. I almost made a huge mistake the other day but fortunately one of my students caught the error and notified me immediately. Phew~

In case you’re wondering about the title, that’s how many keys there are on a standard piano.

 

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Twin Telepathy in Skagway, Alaska – Golden Princess Cruise Day 4

Our ship docked in the small town of Skagway around six that morning.  My uncle, who had gone on this same cruise three times already, advised us to skip the tours since the town isn’t that big.  He told us we can save money by just going out and exploring it ourselves.  Since we didn’t have a strict schedule to follow, we took our sweet time getting up that morning and eating our breakfast (which was actually brunch because it was almost 10am by the time we made it to the Horizon Court).

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Most of the people were done with breakfast by then so we were able to get a table by the window

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Outside we saw this mountain covered in graffiti.  At first I thought that Skagway had a vandal problem but according to this site, it’s actually the work of the crew members from different ships:

This hill has been “decorated” for years by the crews of different ships that dock nearby. The crews honor their captain by painting the name of the ship and captain on the hill. Legend has it that the higher the name, the more the crew respect and love their captain.

Interesting…

We planned on heading into town between 11am and noon.  We had about an hour to spare so Ezra and I walked around the ship.
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We found this dolphin near the Horizon Court

We went up to the deck to check out the view
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Look at those beautiful snow capped mountains

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There was another cruise ship docked nearby

At around 11:30, we met up with my parents and got ready to explore the town
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A friendly reminder from the crew

Once we got off the ship, we took a few photos as usual

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In front of our Golden Princess

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People queued up for the White Pass Scenic Railway Tour

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Week 46/52 : I will trust in the shelter of your wings

Psalm 61:4

As you may know, the Philippines suffered major devastation last year due to Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda). Cities were wiped out and thousands of people died. Many places still have not recovered from the aftermath. Now, there’s another super typhoon headed our way.

Here’s a clip from an article posted yesterday at interaksyon.com:

MANILA, Philippines — Typhoon “Hagupit” (local name: “Ruby”) is officially this year’s strongest storm and could intensify even further before making landfall, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration said Friday morning.

Soon after, Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas, at a briefing of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, said Hagupit had become a “super typhoon.”

The latest data from PAGASA showed Hagupit bearing winds of 215 kilometers per hour with gusts of up to 250 kph — as strong as typhoon “Ompong” (international name: “Vongfong”), which entered the Philippine area of responsibility in October but did not make landfall.

Hagupit is also slated to be the most powerful storm to hit land this year.

People are still traumatized by the events of last year and the impending arrival of Typhoon Hagupit is throwing a lot of them into panic. On the other hand, there are those who believe that we’re better prepared now thanks to what happened with Typhoon Yolanda. Typhoon Hagupit is expected to make landfall in Eastern Samar later this evening, which means we probably won’t feel it here in Laguna until tomorrow afternoon. I read online that Hagupit’s wind speeds are less compared to Yolanda, but it’s still very strong. Also, it’s travelling very slowly, which means it will stay in a certain location for longer periods of time. Everyone is worried about how much devastation Hagupit will bring to the Philippins. There’s not really much we can do right now but hope and pray for the best.

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INSTABITS : November 2014

I meant to post this earlier but it was our last week of classes and  I barely had time to sleep, let alone blog.  We have finals coming up next week too, although Typhoon Hagupit/Ruby’s supposed to make landfall this weekend so I’m not sure what will happen to our schedule.  All we can do is hope and pray that it won’t be too devastating.

I watched the K-drama Doctor Stranger last month and developed a mild obsession with Park Hae Jin.  I’ve always liked him in Family Outing and I thought he was great in You Who Came From The Stars, but I especially loved him in this drama.  C’mon, a brilliant and hot doctor with a great sense of fashion? Who can resist that?

My  cousin visited me on campus one day and dropped off these brownies for our family.  Thanks Grace!

And later that week Ckloy brought me a dozen donuts from Krispy Kreme. Diet? What diet?

Grabbed this photo from Brinky doodle. We had a very brief meet up at St. Therese one afternoon.

This is why my roommates shouldn’t leave me alone at the office.  I get extremely vain and end up taking lots of selfies.

Posted this for Throwback Thursday.  I found this while browsing some old photos on my laptop. Poor Ezra XD  This was taken back in 2010 when we had our little shoot at the National Art Center (blog entry HERE).

I bought this key cover at the IRRI bazaar.  The only problem is the “strawberry” is so large that sometimes I have a hard time unlocking my door.  It’s a small price to pay for having an adorable key :D

Satur-date with Ckloy.  (He’s wearing huge shades because he didn’t sleep at all that night.)  I think this was the only time I went to SM Calamba last month.  I used to go practically every weekend, but lately I’ve been avoiding the traffic in Pansol (it gets especially bad during the holidays and summer).  I’m hoping they finish construction soon so that the roads won’t be as congested.

Ckloy and I watched Big Hero 6.  I loved it.  It was super cute and heartwarming :)  I want my own Baymax! (Ckloy fell asleep halfway through the movie, lol.)

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Book Review : Black Lies

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I don’t really know if this counts as a review or not because it’s going to be really short.  I’m swamped with deadlines but I just had to tell everyone about this book.  It’s *that* amazing. This is one of those stories that I will remember for a long, long time.

It will be difficult to write this entry without giving out any spoilers, but I promise there won’t be any.  Instead of trying to summarize the story and risk giving anything away, here’s the actual blurb from Goodreads, just so you have an idea what the book is about:

Brant: Became a tech billionaire by his twentieth birthday. Has been in a relationship with me for 3 years. Has proposed 4 times. Been rejected 4 times.

Lee: Cuts grass when he’s not banging housewives. Good with his hands, his mouth, and his cock. Has been pursued relentlessly by me for almost 2 years, whether he knows it or not.

Go ahead. Judge me. You have no idea what my love entails. If you think you’ve heard this story before, trust me – you haven’t.

Honestly, I was very apprehensive after reading the blurb because I don’t condone cheating.  I have no idea why some people find it romantic or thrilling, I just think its despicable. I hate it so much that I’ve actually abandoned books before because the main character was so unfaithful.  But this popped up in my recommendations on Goodreads, and it had incredibly high ratings so I wanted to at least give it a chance before dismissing it.  Words can’t express how glad I am that I did.

This book took me on an emotional rollercoaster.  It was beautifully written and the author did an amazing job telling the story while unraveling its secrets layer by layer.  The characters she created were all incredible too.  I loved Brant.  He was sweet, caring, intelligent, refined, and rich as hell.  I’m talking Tony Stark/Bruce Wayne kind of rich.  Hell, he gave his girlfriend 3 cars as a present and booked a 30 thousand plane ride home just because she wasn’t feeling well.  I don’t think there was a moment in the story when I didn’t love him. With that, you would expect me to despise Lee, the “other guy”.  To be honest, I did hate him for a while, when he first showed up.  How dare he walk in and ruin the beautiful relationship between Brant and Layana.  But, as the story progressed, I grew to love him too.  He was the complete opposite of Brant – rough, crude and a little selfish, but something about him draws you in.  And then there’s Layana, the heroine.  You will love her and you will hate her. You will question her and you may think that she’s the absolute worst.  Personally, I think she’s amazing.  I suggest that you keep an open mind when you read this book.  There were moments when I doubted Layana’s love for Brant and Lee.  After all, why would she do something that would obviously cause them so much pain.  But as the story progressed, I realized how deep her love was for Brant and Lee, and how much pain she was willing to go through for both of them.  I don’t know what I would have done if I was placed her situation.  She is definitely one of my favorite characters of all time.

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Week 45/52 : Happy nine years Ckloy!

Today marks my 9th anniversary with Ckloy. I can’t believe that it’s been nine years since we found each other. I think this year was very important for us because we were able to show that a little distance won’t hurt our relationship. We were able to survive 6 months apart from each other since his job required him to go to Texas. This is the first time that we had to spend that much time away from each other ever since we became a couple. It was difficult, of course, but thanks to technology we were able to get through it :D

We’re still making plans on how we should celebrate this joyous occasion. So far we’ve just greeted each other online. Kinda lame, I know, but what can we do. Our offices are about 60km apart and our anniversary happened to fall on a weekday. Plus, he caught some virus that’s been going around so I told him to just rest for today so that we’ll be able to see each other over the weekend. Hopefully we’ll be able to celebrate properly then.

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