Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Macau - Day 1 & 2

Grand Emperor Hotel
Taipa Village
Taipa Houses and Garden


Some of the worst things that can happen to you when traveling is:

1. A canceled, delayed or missed flight
2. Missing luggage
3. A toothache
4. A sprain

Yesterday, while we were walking to do dinner, I was aimlessly chattering away (as usual) when I was suddenly face to face with the pavement.  It took me about a minute to catch my breath and about 3 minutes before I could walk (more like hopping than walking, actually)

So for today I'll just sit at home all day, and cook for myself.  I need this injury fully healed because we're going to Hongkong this weekend, and I'll be in Singapore after that.

Macau's poor little tasty treats will just have to wait until tomorrow :'(

Monday, February 23, 2009


Tawilis (small fishes) in beer batter (A great tasting, albeit failed experiment)

In our house, Sunday = seafood.  Lot's of it.

It's one of the things I sorely missed while I was away and is the only thing that wakes me up on Sundays.

Talaba (Oysters)

On my travels, I do make it a point to eat seafood, where books, magazines, and television say the seafood is great.

Sipit (Crab claws)

And though I don't like putting down other cultures and other cuisines, I am more often than not, disappointed with the fare provided.  Most of them are good because of the additional sauce added or manner of cooking that are done to them.  And even if they are good, they are not great, amazing, or mouthwatering enough that it makes you shiver in anticipation thinking of the next time you will eat it.  I do need to point out that being in a tropical country where our seas are spoiled with a lot of sun, our fishes tend to eat better, thereby, we the hunters eat better as well.  So even if we just boil our seafood, the result is sweet and tasty and does not require anything else added to it (although bagoong with mangga doesn't hurt)

And so, despite that Manila is a place where smog, heat and traffic is so bad, that it will make you turn the other way and run, I braved it all to come home to this:

Crabs and Oysters with white wine

I am so back.

Authors note:
1. No, we didn't have white wine with seafood before, it's one of the lovely perks of being an adult.
2. I am in no way talking about the seafood heavens Singapore and Thailand.  They, in my eyes, perfected the art of blending seafood with sauces so unbelievable, I do shiver in anticipation that I'm coming back to visit them.

Sunday Food

Typical Sunday fare in our house

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Lost in Translation - Manila

Now, I have been born and bred in the Philippines, but sometimes…. sometimes I really don't get what people are saying. 


After a bad couple of weeks at work,  I was desperately looking forward to my vacation.  I come into the new NAIA Terminal 3, impressed at how big the place is, the cleanliness and marveled at the….umm…lack of people in the terminal.  But, as with the other NAIA terminals, the layout is pretty bad, but the absence of running, screaming, crazy people hitting me every 5 seconds makes it less noticeable.


And besides, I was determined to be happy that day, and so I go about smiling at everyone and was at peace with the world.


When I get to the security gate, I asked them if I should take out my laptop and the liquids from the bags, and they said no.  I said to myself, OMG, no need to unfurl my bag?! and take off my shoes?! (insert wide eyes of glee here).  So I load my stuff in the conveyor, take off my belt and that was that.  After spending many harried hours battling with the lines at various airports the previous year, I took it as a good sign that my vacation is going to go great.


As I walk into the security doorway, the security lady points me to the x-ray machine for bags and says, "Step in!"


Startled, I stepped back and looked at her, then tried to enter the doorway again.


She gestures with her hands, this time more firmly, pointing to the x-ray machine and says "Step-in!"


I tilt my head to the right, not understanding what she was saying, and decided to continue and walk up the platform right after the doorway.  Now this incited her ire and she continued to gesture firmly to the x-ray machine and said:


"Step in!"


(I stare at her with a befuddled look)

"Step in!"



Then, one of her co-workers suddenly shouts:



"Put your slippers in the xray-machine!!"


(Step-in is slang for flip-flops in the Philippines)