(WARNING: Picture heavy post ahead)
When I started my graduate studies at UPD in 2009, my parents helped me search for a place to stay. We looked at different dorms and apartments, but we couldn’t find any that we liked. Fortunately, my dad’s friend heard that we were looking for a place and suggested that we look at a condo unit they were planning to rent out along Xavierville Avenue.
The place was called Residencia de Regina. Tricycle drivers know it as just “Regina”.
The unit was practically brand new when we looked at it. The owner told us that they bought it for their daughter but she decided to study abroad. She slept there once with her friends, but that was the only time she used the place. So basically, I was the first tennant there.
I loved the bathroom 🙂
The place even had a pool on the 22nd floor, although I never used it during my stay there.
Needless to say, we loved the place. I loved how cozy and accessible it was. My parents liked it because there were security guards at the entrance so they felt safe about letting me stay there. (The Regina guards are so strict! Everytime my friends come to visit, they have to log in at the entrance. And the guards would actually call to ask me if I was expecting guests before allowing them to enter the building.)
I moved in officially on May 28, 2009 – just before my first semester at UPD.
My mom helping me move my stuff in. If you notice the fridge is different from the previous picture since this one is ours. We chose to rent the place unfurnished because it was a bit cheaper, but the owner let us borrow the table so we didn’t have to bring our own.
Stocking up the cabinets with all sorts of goodies
So many people came to help me move in
Ezra, Raffy and Kurt enjoying the large mirror on the closet door
My parents and me with Mama darling, tired from unpacking
Raffy got bored while we were decorating the place so he decided to play some games on Bam’s laptop
Ta-dah! A fridge, a toaster and a microwave – the most important appliance for me at the time since I didn’t know how to cook XD I will survive!!!
A pail, tabo and a mat for the bathroom
All done unpacking
Since I sometimes have a hard time adjusting to new places, my parents decided to allot one weekend for the family to spend time at my new apartment and help me get used to the place. They dropped me off for my morning Saturday class at UPD and waited for me to finish back at the apartment.
My parents brought a DVD player to keep themselves amused while Ezra and I just played Insaniquarium on my laptop.
Me, looking so excited
Ezra fixing herself up before we went out to have dinner at Trinoma
It was Father’s Day the next day, so Ckloy dropped by to join us for lunch. This is a shot of him and Ezra in a paper star making competition
Cleaning up the place before we left
Taking out the trash
To be honest, I didn’t really stay much at my apartment during my first semester in UPD. I only had classes on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays so I still spent most of my time in LB – but I did occasionally have sleepovers there with friends and Ezra.
I spent my 2nd night at my apartment with Brinks and Moya.
Making alfredo sauce
Moy cooked while Brinks checked her email and I took pictures
Nom nom nom
During my first few months there, I associated staying at my apartment with sleepovers and malls, probably because it was during this time that Brinks was hunting for a new job and often had interviews at Makati. She would usually stay at my apartment after her interview and we would go shopping at Glorietta, Landmark or Megamall.
There was also that week when Brinks had to attend some kind of training so she stayed with me for several days.
Brinky bought this cute headband with flowers on them
Ezra liked to visit me at my apartment whenever she had the chance too. This was a surprise because she usually hates commuting, but she was willing to ride the bus and the train to get to my place.
At the LRT station. She actually ended up enjoying the train rides, except during rush hour of course. There was one time we took the MRT from Ortigas to Cubao at rush hour, she had to spend the entire train ride standing on one leg and holding on to me for support. At least it was only two stations away.
We liked to go to different malls and shop whenever she stayed with me. (I had a lot of free time back then XD)
Of course it was even more fun when Brinks and Ezra visited me at the same time since they end up doing random crazy things when they’re together. I still remember the time when my entire apartment ended up smelling like burnt popcorn because they got too engrossed with curling Brinks’ hair that they forgot about the popcorn they were making. Or the time when I had to constantly tell them to keep it down because they decided that the perfect time for them to have a Dissidia battle was when I was cramming for a report I had to submit early the next day. Ahh, I miss those days~
During my birthday in 2009, my parents were away on a business trip, so Ezra and I decided to stay at my apartment that week and go mall-hopping. Brinks couldn’t stand the thought of me celebrating my birthday with just my sister, so she actually went to Manila and brought me dessert (Cathedral Windows – she said she couldn’t find a cake at the time XD). Seriously, who could ask for a better friend, right? Thanks kup! Mwah mwah~
When I got back from my class that evening, Brinks was already there, cooking dinner for me and Ezra, awww~
Chicken nuggets, hotdog, eggs and soup. Typical dorm food but still so yummy, especially when cooked by a good friend XD
Ezra and Brinks lighting birthday candles for me
Even though it wasn’t really a cake, Brinks wanted to put candles on the cathedral windows so I could blow them and make a wish when midnight comes around
Happy birthday to me! 😀 We slept after eating some of the jello (thanks Kup!). My parents called a bit after midnight to wish me a happy birthday. The next day, the three of us met up with Ckloy at Megamall and Ezra treated us to brunch at Pancake House (Thanks Ez!). Such a simple celebration, but it was definitely one of my most memorable birthdays.
Raffy also liked to stay over whenever he had the chance. I think it’s because he gets bored at home, being an only child, that’s why he lets Ezra and me get away with all sorts of things when we’re together.
We don’t really do much when we hang out. Normally we just watch movies on my tiny net book, play video games or sleep. Sometimes we’d go to the mall and hang out at the arcade or watch a movie.
Raffy’s Insaniquarium user name, LOL
Cooking breakfast for his dear cousins. He’s trying to imitate the weird expressions we usually see on cooking animes, LOL
Tasting his “dish”. Ezra looks so bangag because she’s not used to waking up before noon. Raffy usually wakes her up for breakfast when he stays with us.
Breakfast iz ready~ This was taken on a different day (I think, since Raffy’s wearing a different shirt).
Pancakes, corned tuna and egg salad, yummm~ I normally don’t make breakfast when I’m alone since I’m too lazy (cereal or pancit canton is usually enough for me in the morning), but when Ezra and Raffy visit, I like having something yummier for breakfast.
I’ve never made french toast before I started staying in Manila, but this was the year when Buzzer Beat came out and Ezra and I were obsessed with the show. There was this scene where Yamapi made some french toast for Keiko, and it looked so yummy that we just wanted to reach into the TV and grab some. So when we had the chance, we Googled french toast recipes (which turned out to be pretty simple) and made some. I’m proud to say they turned out yummy. I made some for Kat, Ate Love and Amie one time too, and they loved it.
Another thing Ezra liked to eat when she’s staying with me is this instant Mac and Cheese by San Remo, so I always had some stored in my cabinet for when she comes to visit.
On my 2nd semester, I stayed at my apartment more often because I had classes on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Amie stayed with me most of the time because we had similar schedules. This was the semester when we took up MSE 225 and spent countless Friday nights staying up answering our weekly problem sets. It was stressful, but I had a lot of fun because Kat and Ate Love usually slept over so we could work out the problems together.
Kat listening to music as she looked over the questions
Ate Love busy answering the problem set
Papers everywhere! The girls have gone crazy from all the problems we had to answer. Ate Love is smiling at the calculator, Kat has collapsed and Amie is ironing Kat’s hair.
Kat, Amie and Ate Love looking busy. (Ezra looking proud of the Miaka buns she put on Kat while she solved the problems.)
Ate Love treated us to a pizza one study session because it was her birthday that week. (Thanks Ate Love)
Hahriz also stayed with us a few times that semester 😀
On my 3rd semester, I didn’t use the apartment that much again, because I only had classes on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, so I’d normally just go home to LB during my free time. Occasionally, Amie and I would stay there when we had stay late in the lab doing XRD analysis for our MSE 216 paper.
I got the most use out of my apartment on my 4th semester and the summer after that. This was when I started to really focus on my thesis. I spent most of my time in the lab and would only go home to LB on weekends. Naturally I stayed at my apartment during those times. This was when I really grew attached to my new home. Amie would usually stay with me because she was doing her thesis experiments too. Sometimes, when we’re not too busy, we would have sleepovers with Beulah.
This was taken during Beulah’s first time staying with us. She bought a box of Cello’s donuts, yumm
I curled her hair for her using my flat iron
Model and stylist, LOL
Beulah, Amie and me. Beulah said I look like some weird blue alien blob in this photo. I was already in my nightie, about to fall asleep, when Beulah decided to start taking pictures so I just wrapped myself up with a blanket.
As you can see, I have a lot of good memories of my apartment. But, as with most things in life, good things must eventually come to an end. Since my lab at NIGS had closed down, there really isn’t much need for me to go to UPD every day anymore. I’ve finished all my coursework, and all that’s left for me to do is finish my thesis. Since I’ve done most of my experiments already, I just have to focus on characterizing my samples, interpreting the results and writing my manuscript. Most of these things I can do here in LB, so my dad decided that it was time for us to let go of my apartment 😦
My contract ended on the last day of June, but I moved out on the 29th since the 30th was my dad’s birthday. I wanted to have one more sweet memory of the place, so Ezra and I decided to stay there one last time. We were hoping Amie, Brinks or Raffy could join us but Amie and Brinks had work and Raffy had to pick up his mom at the airport so it was just Ezra and me. We spent the afternoon going shopping at Trinoma with Beulah, Lynne, Vesma and Jay, then Ezra and I headed to the apartment for one last sleep over. We didn’t do anything special – no cake, no party … nothing that would remind us that this was our last night there. We just hung out, relaxed and played World of Goo. Later, when Ezra fell asleep, I started to pack my stuff so there would be less work to do the following day when my parents arrive with a van to haul every thing back to LB.
*sniff* *sniff* Don’t want to pack up and leave T__T
The first thing I cleaned out was my closet. I bagged all the clothes and random stuff in the drawers.
Good bye dear closet~ (That reminds me, those hangers belong to Brinks, I have to return them)
Then I packed up all my school materials in my little study corner:
I hardly used it for studying (I spent most of my time here playing games on my laptop), but I will definitely miss it. The little piggy was a gift from Ckloy. He got it from a claw machine in Timezone.
I was too tired and sad to continue packing after this, so I just tidied a bit and said goodbye to the little corners of my apartment and took pictures.
My TV corner. I didn’t use the it that much since I preferred to watch things on my laptop, but Amie loved staying up watching random stuff on TV when she stayed with me. The little Pucca doll was a gift from Cat.
My fridge, toaster and microwave – the three things I used the most. I would have starved if it weren’t for these. I normally bought take-out food, kept them in the fridge and just heated them in the toaster or microwave for meals. Or sometimes, Amie and I would cook a lot of food on Mondays, store them in the fridge and heat them up throughout the week. Probably not the healthiest thing to do, but hey, it kept us from starving.
Tiny dining table with cereals, vitamins, condiments and all sorts of instant foods.
My stowaway dish rack under the electric stove. Those plates, bowls and mugs were a gift from Kurt’s family to my mom which she let me borrow. She was confident I wouldn’t break or damage them since they were Corelle XD She also let me borrow that little pink glass pot and the blue glasses. Ezra and I bought the little frying pan at the Japan Home Center for P88 (or was it P66). Those plastic containers are from when I buy take out at Mashita in UPD.
My bathroom. I was lucky that Amie stayed with me most of the time because she hates messy places, especially messy bathrooms. This meant that whenever my bathroom got a bit too dirty, it would annoy her and she’d clean it up XD I’m not really a slob or anything, Amie’s just a really neat person. She would scrub the floors, the mirror and even the shower doors! Thanks Amie 😀 Mwaaaaah~
Sink area with toothbrushes, facial wash, girly stuff and other hygiene products. You can also see the Ajax powder Amie uses to clean the bathroom. She hasn’t stayed at my apartment for a while when I took this, so the glass shelf and the sink isn’t super clean.
Shampoos, conditioners, etc.
Shoe and slipper corner
The wall facing my bed. I love the wooden shelves. I left the top shelf empty when I moved in because the initial plan was that Brinks would find a job nearby and live with me. I reserved the top shelf for her stuff, but in the end she got a job in LB so it remained empty during my entire stay there.
The next day, my parents arrived around 10am. Things got pretty chaotic because we only had about 2 1/2 hours to pack and clean the place since we had to meet my Ninang for lunch.
My mom. Tired, but still smiling. She and Joy (our helper) did most of the packing and cleaning. I spent most of the time running back and forth to the Regina office, taking care of bills and the paperwork required for me to move out. Ezra and my dad were in charge of loading the stuff in the van.
She even scrubbed the stove to make it shiny again
My empty apartment 😦
I made a list of some things I will remember most when I think of my stay at Regina:
- Watching Running Man with Amie during dinner
- Going shopping the entire day with Ezra and returning home to a cozy apartment
- Cooking breakfast and dinner (I normally don’t do this in LB since we have a maid to do that for us)
- Brinky’s job interviews and our gimmiks after
- Staying up late at night while answering problem sets with friends
- Playing games and watching movies with Raffy
- The false fire alarms, especially the ones that go off at 6 in the morning, grrr~ I was told that this is usually because there is someone cooking inside the building and they forgot to turn on the exhaust.
- Going grocery shopping at Rustan’s Katipunan
- Having friends stay over
- The friendly guards. Although there was this one annoying guard who couldn’t seem to remember my face no matter what! That guy has serious memory problems! I would exit the building to order water at the refilling station right next door (seriously, it’s like 20 steps away), and when I try to enter again after 2 minutes, he would stop me and ask me if I lived there. Grrrr~ (I haven’t seen him for over a year though, he must have gotten fired or something.)
- Spending late nights at the lab and not worrying about how to get home because I know I have a place nearby to spend the night.
- Going ukay shopping! I will seriously miss this~ I loved that there was a nice ukay shop within walking distance of my apartment. The ladies who minded the store were very friendly. They were really nice to me and Beulah, probably because we always bought a lot whenever we dropped by their shop XD I’m going to miss them too.
There are many more things I could add to this list, but I will end this entry here because it’s getting way too long already.
It’s really hard saying goodbye to a place you’ve grown to love, but at least it left me with a lot of sweet memories.
One last emo picture of me in my apartment to wrap this entry up:
Goodbye Regina 1503! I will miss you terribly! Thanks for all the good times~