Anglaagan Turned 5

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It’s been a while since my last post, and Anglaagan’s 5th anniversary this March went by silently. It’s been a very busy year…I know I also said that last year, but each year seems to get more and more hectic in the real world. This year I got a full taste of the word “workation”. It’s a newly invented term for modern-day workaholics superheroes who take the office with them wherever they go, and thanks to modern technology, it can now be done. Unfortunately, hapless mortals like me get sucked into that whirlwind of productivity as well. Taking conference calls from the shoulder of a highway? Writing emails in the dead of the night in hotel rooms? Checking messages wherever there’s a scent of a wifi signal? Yup, been there, done that.

But still, we managed to get ourselves a few trips. Most notable of course was our very first vacation to the land of the rising sun. In our minds, Japan was always that elusive prize, that weird, intriguing, hard to reach land that spawned such eccentricities as geishas, ninjas and Voltes V.  Japan wasn’t always very accessible to ordinary Filipinos like yours truly. There used to be strict visa requirements for one, and then there were tales of it being the most expensive place on earth, where money gets sucked like a vacuum and any prince who ventures there returns as a pauper. However the recent relaxing of these requirements suddenly opened wide doors of opportunities for the brave. Suddenly Japan was no longer so daunting. Godzilla suddenly became, ahem…Barney, for lack of a better comparison. Yes Japan, in many ways, is expensive like many have said before, but not impossible. A smart traveler can definitely hack a budget trip in Japan.

We also managed to return to Hong Kong and Macau yet again. Macau was charming as always, and I never get tired of Hong Kong. It’s vibrant, lively, pulsating, active. I know many cities in asia boast the same, but there’s something about Hong Kong that makes it stand out. It’s a western city that’s a little bit oriental, or an oriental city that’s a little bit western. It’s clean, though not as thoroughly sanitized as Singapore. It’s rough, but not as much as noisy, wild Bangkok. It’s not here, it’s not there, it’s…something else. It’s unique. It’s Hong Kong.

And then of course we had that arduously long but rewarding road trip to Bicol to see the majestic Mount Mayon.

For the next year, we can come to expect……more work. But of course, they say the reward for good work is more work, so what can we do? But still, I will travel and write no matter what, for to borrow the famous lines of Sir Winston Churchill – “we shall write on the beaches, we shall write on the landing grounds, we shall write on the fields and on the streets, we shall write on the hills, we shall never surrender!”.

Umeda, Osaka, Japan

Umeda, Osaka, Japan

Museum of Housing and Living, Osaka, Japan

Museum of Housing and Living, Osaka, Japan

Dotonbori, Osaka, Japan

Dotonbori, Osaka, Japan

Dotonbori, Osaka, Japan

Dotonbori, Osaka, Japan

Kaiyukan Aquarium, Osaka, Japan

Kaiyukan Aquarium, Osaka, Japan

Kaiyukan Aquarium, Osaka, Japan

Kaiyukan Aquarium, Osaka, Japan

Universal Studios, Osaka, Japan

Universal Studios, Osaka, Japan

Universal Studios, Osaka, Japan

Universal Studios, Osaka, Japan

Kasuga Taisha, Nara, Japan

Kasuga Taisha, Nara, Japan

Kasuga Taisha, Nara, Japan

Kasuga Taisha, Nara, Japan

Nara Deer Park, Nara, Japan

Nara Deer Park, Nara, Japan

Todai-ji, Nara, Japan

Todai-ji, Nara, Japan

Kinkakuji, Kyoto, Japan

Kinkakuji, Kyoto, Japan

Sumiyoshi Taisha, Osaka, Japan

Sumiyoshi Taisha, Osaka, Japan

Sumiyoshi Taisha, Osaka, Japan

Sumiyoshi Taisha, Osaka, Japan

Imperial Palace, Kyoto, Japan

Imperial Palace, Kyoto, Japan

Imperial Palace, Kyoto, Japan

Imperial Palace, Kyoto, Japan

Nijo Castle, Kyoto, Japan

Nijo Castle, Kyoto, Japan

Nijo Castle, Kyoto, Japan

Nijo Castle, Kyoto, Japan

Osaka Castle Park, Osaka, Japan

Osaka Castle Park, Osaka, Japan

Osaka Castle, Osaka, Japan

Osaka Castle, Osaka, Japan

Osaka Castle, Osaka, Japan

Osaka Castle, Osaka, Japan

Mayon Volcano, Albay

Mayon Volcano, Albay

Laiya, Batangas

Laiya, Batangas

Macau

Macau

The Ruins of St. Paul, Macau

The Ruins of St. Paul, Macau

Sands Cotai Central, Macau

Sands Cotai Central, Macau

Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong

Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong

Nan Lian Garden, Hong Kong

Nan Lian Garden, Hong Kong

Nan Lian Garden, Hong Kong

Nan Lian Garden, Hong Kong

Disneyland, Hong Kong

Disneyland, Hong Kong

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