Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Fiesta sa Pinas, Iba!

Last week, my friend and I had a short vacation in Quezon Province in anticipation of the Feast of San Isidro Labrador or more popularly known as the Pahiyas Festival. From Cubao we boarded Lucena Lines in the morning of May 13. For almost four hour straight, my friend and I were just talking non-stop making up for lost time. And besides, it was our first time to travel together outside Metro Manila. We arrived in Lucena City at exactly 11 am and went straight to the house of my cousin. After having a quick lunch, we were set to our first destination - Kamay ni Hesus, a very huge statue of Christ on top of a hill with His hands wide open. Though my third time to trail the sanctifying 300+ stairways, the experience has always been spectacular. After a literally breathtaking trek, we immersed ourselves in the cold fresh water of Batis Aramin, a resort located just across the street. With P120 entrance fee, we surely enjoyed the relaxing views, the fresh water as cold as ice and a number of photo session. We left the resort at five o’clock with a fairly smoother skin (I think). Then, we had a short visit to a few relatives in Lucena before returning home. Exhausted and starving, we had rice, fried chicken, barbeque and chami (similar to miki bihon) for dinner. And slept right after.
 Kamay ni Hesus

A pool in Batis Aramin

The next day, May 14, we went to Kamayan sa Palaisdaan where we were supposed to have a small meal but ended up just taking snapshots and nothing else. After the short tour, we took the jeepney going to the town proper of Lucban, the very reason why we were on vacation. As soon as we arrived, the majestic whiff of the Pahiyas Festival was already overwhelming. We were very sure that we were going to have a good time. Our first stop was an old Catholic Church where the statue of Lucban’s patron saint was decorated with various real crops. Miniatures of the colorful houses were also displayed inside the church. Then my cousin brought us to Mustiola, the best carinderia I’ve seen in my entire life, and had a sumptuous lunch at relatively affordable price.  Armed with full tummy, we were geared up for an arduous but extravagant walking experience.  Contrary to rumors, the facades of some houses were already creatively decorated with vegetables, fruits, kipings and various natural pieces. We were also lucky to have witnessed a short parade exhibiting their very colorful custom with some Higantes generously giving some entertainment. Of course, a feast wouldn’t be complete without food specially pansit habhab partnered with barbeque, a slice of puto and a cold bottle of Coca-Cola. We had yema cake in Rodillas, where we also bought Buding (cassava cake) and other foodstuff as pasalubong to our loved ones. To complete our Pop Talk experience, we went to Abcede to buy Lucban longganisa.  Unfortunately, we had to leave the same day. It was heartbreaking when the actual merriment was just starting to heat up. But it was a fun, fun, fun trip nonetheless. And definitely, I would love to experience it every year.

Photos during the Bisperas of the Pahiyas Festival  

The street to Tiyangge

Sample House

Getting Ready for tomorrow's event

Higantes @ the parade

Food in the street

Oh yes, it's more fun in the Philippines. :)

Sunday, May 20, 2012

A Short Story of an Impatient Juvenile

When my laptop crashed last month, my network visibility narrowed. With limited time and internet access, I was visiting my stock market account just to see if my target price has been reached or my sell orders were already cancelled. Just to be sure that I won’t miss my target price, whenever there is a chance to go online I will cancel my current transactions and press the sell button again using GTC. However, the market has been bearish in the past couple of weeks. Just when I thought I was about to reach my first 100k mark in May or June. It’s like I’m asking for a miracle. But, who knows?

I have been in the stock market for 10 months already and it got me thinking. The market is low again, is investing in the stock market really worth it?

Just a little flashback. In July 14, 2011, I used PhP 6,000 (which I borrowed from my generous mother) to open an account with COL Financial (formerly Citiseconline). Four days later, I bought 10 stocks in Ayala Corporation (AC) and 100 stocks in Robinson’s Land Corporation (RLC). Did I really understand what I did? By tracing the chart of both AC and RLC, I was convinced that their market price was cheap at that time. As the saying goes ”Buy low Sell high. With that quote in mind and PSE’s price chart as my pillar, I believed that it was a sure way to make money only to realize that my knowledge about the stock market was so juvenile.

My investment continued to grow whenever there was extra cash until it came to a point that our household expenses were mounting. And so the stock market took the back seat. My initial plan to invest small amounts monthly eventually didn’t push through forcing me to use Plan B: Reinvest. From being a supposedly long-term investor I suddenly became a trader. For almost every single day, my attention was glued in studying the critical matters affecting the rise and fall of the market prices, how to interpret the different charts and a whole lot more. I would buy and sell stocks in a span of two trading days to two weeks. But I am such an impatient trader. My short thread of patience resulted to a bunch of regrets. There were many occasions that I entered the market with relatively low price and ended up gaining 2% or even lose money because I didn’t wait long enough. The next day or two, the market price skyrocketed missing a great opportunity to yield larger numerical figures. That happened to AAI (now BLOOM), ABS, AC, ALI, EDC, FOOD, LPZ, MEG, MPI, ORE, PSE and RCBC.

Since last year, I was experimenting to some extent. I was brave to test the water. In effect, I was gaining and losing money at the same time. Blame it to my impatience and bad entrance and exit. But as days passed by, I am becoming more cautious in choosing the stocks to buy and when to sell. At present, I have shares in six companies and my portfolio is completely red. Due to my inactiveness in the market lately, I wasn’t able to sell before the plunge. But no worries, I have learned my lesson in my numerous mistakes. For now I only have two options: (a) do nothing and (b) press the sell button with GTC as term and hope for a miracle that my target price will be hit in situation like this. Otherwise, to wait is absolutely a wise thing to do. 

Hashtag: #Wishing upon a star.

P.S. I’m grateful that my cousin has a laptop. That’s why I’m back with a long blog post. :)

Photo grabbed @

I'm in Love with Mustiola's

I first saw Mustiola's in Pop Talk, a Lifestyle show in GMA News TV. It was a food trip episode in Quezon Province.  Among the three restaurants that were featured, it was Mustiola's that caught my attention the most. It was a carinderia serving typical local dishes in a Spanish inspired old house setting. The entire concept of Mustiola's was so infectious that now I am dreaming of having my own resto in two years.
Few days after the episode was aired, I was able to see it personally. And yes, it’s carinderia. And yes, the tv monitor was not deceiving. It was really beautiful - a classy carinderia. But hey, Mustiola's is not just about ambiance. They are also serving good food. My most favourite is Finura, it’s a halo-halo slash milk shake slash yummier when you sip slash I haven’t tasted anything like that in Manila.

Mustiola's is definitely a must see in Lucban. A great place to eat at fairly affordable price. Pop na Pop!

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