January 29, 2017

DOWN SOUTH | I Travel, I Eat, I Got Diarrhea

Last week, I was on a boat of mixed races: Filipino, Chinese, Korean, French, Belgian, and perhaps other races that I overlooked or forgot to ask. It was a happy, odd mix, I would say—a boat of strangers that sometimes ended up as Facebook friends or more often than not, started and ended as strangers. Our boat crew was admirable: they took our pictures, provided a rough course on swimming for those who could not swim, complimented us when needed, taught us Coron’s history, and fed us. Adobo at Malapascua Island, Cebu, Philippines Aside from maneuvering the boat, our captain […]
January 13, 2017
Sinulog Festival 2014

RAPPLER | Sinulog: To Flow with the Current

This narrative and photo essay was first published on Rappler.com on January 19, 2015.  CEBU, PHILIPPINES—“Every year, my Niño comes back,” shared a middle-aged man holding a small replica of Sto. Niño. His must have lost its cross before, now replaced with a rolled-up chocolate wrapper. He was one of the passengers I saw holding a Sto. Niño on our flight back to Cebu from General Santos last Friday. Our flight was packed, and so was Mactan airport. I thought Cebu would not be as crowded as it used to be, with Pope Francis’ visit and Typhoon Amang hovering over […]
January 6, 2017

SUN.STAR | In Praise of Onomichi’s Slowness

  Not to include photos in this essay is intentional. I wonder who would read through everything and leave a feedback; say, it is long and boring. For listicle kind of reading, read “Why I Can’t Stop Raving about Onomichi” on my travel column on TV5’s Interaksyon.com. If you can find Cruising: Going Places, I wrote about Onomichi’s food scene in their July issue.   I fixed the hood of my jacket and made sure my ears were covered. I balled and pocketed my left hand. My right held the ninety-peso pack of sanitary pad—the cheapest I could find on […]
December 13, 2016

TEDxUSanCarlos Talk | How Traveling Shapes Me as a Woman and a Writer

It was TEDxUPCebu that invited me first to debunk the popular dictum [quit your job and travel the world] after some of the students read my open letter Dear Isa, It Is All Right Not to Travel here on BWAB. But I’m leaving Cebu to pursue a year-long trip abroad while fending for myself through jobs online, so I declined their offer. Another opportunity knocked on my door, this time  around from the University of San Carlos. Here is the piece I shared to a very attentive crowd. “Wa ka mahadlok maglaag-laag nga ikaw rang usa? (Are you not scared traveling alone?)” I […]