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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Mother and Daughters Indulgence in PINOY MOVIES

They say that parents must have a happier life when their children already have their own jobs. This is the time when they are finished worrying about their children’s allowances and tuition fees...and it’s also the time for their children to return to their parents what is due to them and once in a while, pamper their parents (in our case, only our mom. Well. My dad is not living with us…so he can’t really feel the fruits of our labor…)

My mom is a homebody. As much as I want to let her explore on her different activities, she really doesn’t want to go out frequently unless necessary. It takes a lot of persuasion for her to go out of the house and have some fun and pamper herself and for some weird reason, she has two daughters who is way far from being a homebody (especially if payday). As my mom would often say it,

“Kating kati kayo gumastos noh?”

and we will just look at her as if begging to allow us to spend our money…our eyes saying…

”Please mama!!! Payagan mo na kami….ngayon lang naman!” (such a clichĂ©!)

Thinking about it, we should be free to buy whatever we like with our own money. Nevertheless, we understand that she only wants to make sure we know how to spend our money wisely. Although for us, spending for family bonding is more important than the money itself! As my sister would put it…

“It’s the bonding, MOTHER!!”

Going back, being the mother that she is, she can’t resist our “paawa” look and will just give up with a loud sigh…

”Bahala na nga kayo…pera niyo naman yan...”

BUTTTTT….there is always an exception to the rule…Same is true with my mom, there is only one thing that she would be willing to go out for (aside from buying groceries)….MOVIES, specifically PINOY movies!!!! Take note: It has to be a Filipino film because if not, you will just end up waking her up in a 15-minute interval…or worst, you will just hear her snore inside the cinema. Her reason:

“Gusto ko lang manuod ng walang iniintindi…Kaya nga ako nanuod para mawala stress ko..kapag foreign, nakakastress naman un..iintindihin ko pa yung sinasabi nila plus iintindihin ko pa yun istorya....” (I want to watch with nothing to worry about…I watch movies to release stress…Watching foreign movies is stressful. I’ll worry about understanding what they are saying…and understanding the whole story at the same time)

Since then, whenever there is a new Filipino film coming up, I will always reserve it to my mom. I remember in my college days, my friends would ask me to go watch a movie. My default question would always be

“Filipino or foreign?”

for the reason that if it is Filipino, my usual line goes…

“Nako! Sorry…Alam mo naman kapag Filipino, nakareserve kay mama…Siguradong magyayaya yun na panuorin namin yan…” (Sorry…You already know that Filipino movies is always reserved for my mom…I am sure my mom would ask me to go watch that movie..)

My friends understand. Anyway, we can watch a foreign one. They are not as limited and as choosy as my mom with respect to movies.

Movies are a good activity to bond with each other. There, we laugh together when Eugene Domingo slipped in the Septic Tank…
we giggle together in the “sulyap tingin” moments of Lyda and Migui… (guess the movie!!! This is for pinoy movie enthusiasts)

We get angry together on how stupid Basha is for leaving Popoy (that is an easy one…)

 but we also hope together that Popoy gives Basha “one more chance” (give-away naman yun.)
We cry together when Lorna Tolentino finally revealed about having a cancer to her daughter, Bea Alonzo in the movie “Sayo Lamang”…
we cry together in pity of Johnny Delgado in “Tanging Yaman”…
we weep together in the journey of “Thelma”…
and just recently, we get mad together on Anne Curtis’ character as a mistress/bitch (LOL. But she portrayed it very well. Two thumbs up for Anne) in the new film “No Other Woman”..
Name it,,we’ve watched it! Alright…I admit…I am a crybaby when it comes to movies…in fact, in my “crying history” 70% of my tears came from movies that in real life painful situations…and my mom is just the same…we will look at each other in the cinema and will laugh at each other for being such a crybaby…most of the time, my mom is holding back her tears..and I’ll say..

”Ma, huwag mo na kasi pigilan.. iiyak mo na yan!!” (Ma, don’t hold it back..cry it out!)

If there is a word “food trip” there is also “crying trip” and we are fond of that!! Really, we haven’t let any famous pinoy movie passed us by…if there is, sobrang unti na lang yun!

Lest I forget, we criticize the actors/actresses physical appearances in the movie…At the middle of the movie, you can just hear us whispering at each other…(fill in the blanks)
”parang ang taba ni ______ diyan…”
”parang ang itim ng kilikili ni _______”
“parang and laki ng binti ni _______”
“hindi pala maganda si ________ pag nakasimangot…”
“banlag si _________ noh?”

Wait…it was not all negative…we know how to appreciate beauty!!!! Hehehehehehe….check this out!

“ang gwapoooooooooo ni ____________, hayuppp!!”
“ang ganda ni ___________, parang manika lang…”
“diyosang diyosa si _____________”
“ang kinis ni ____________...parang walang kapeklat peklat”
“makalaglag panty naman tumingin si ___________”
“Laway mo ate!!!!” (LMFAO)

Right after every movie, expect a discussion among us…we agree and disagree on how great or how poor the actors were in their portrayal of their respective characters…on how good-looking the actors/actresses were in the movie…on the lessons that can be learned from the movie…on the good endings and bitter endings…and also, on our own version of ending the movie if we were the directors…on how it could be better if Jake Cuenca kills Dennis Trillo in “The Neighbor’s Wife.
Kidding aside, the great part of everything is we talk about things.

All-in-all…it is an ultimate bonding experience with my family especially with my mom.. It’s a great thing that we always discuss and we can open up our opinions in different topics depending on the movie we’ve just watched. Sometimes, we agree/ Oftentimes, we disagree and 90% of the time we disagree, silent treatment. (LOL. Nagkakatampuhan kami. I am highly opinionated and I speak my mind and sometimes, my mom is offended by the fact that I inherit this attitude from her…) From these movie discussions, I have been able to know some of my mother’s opinion in some things like marriage, premarital sex, live-in, mistresses, relationships, success, love, death and life in general. Indeed, children can be more mature in their decisions when they can openly talk about anything with their mom, even topics that are considered taboo in other families. Whatever it is, even if our opinions differ, my mother’s points of view will always be considered in all the decisions I have to make in my life.

Thus, I am looking forward on more Filipino movies with her…on more healthy discussions with her. With a mom with few interests like my mom, you almost want to let her watch movies everyday just to make her happy. So I am wishing for more movies to come. Also, more power to the Filipino Movie Industry.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Sisters' bonding: Humanessence SPA

I have never been a fan of health spas. Perhaps, because everything that I can see in a spa, I have it in the comfort of my own home. Thus, I do my manicure, pedicure, foot spa, body it…I am doing it just by myself. My belief was I can do it better than the staff in a spa. I know when it hurts… I know my pain threshold… I know the pressure I need to put on… I know everything about my own body…plus the fact that I don’t have to pay for my own services…talking about being frugal.

My sister is my exact opposite when it comes to this. (Well, not only to this. We’re opposite in a lot of things. Lol. I should do a different post for that!) She’s a spa lover. If she has extra time, you’ll know where to see her, in the spa having a good massage..literally, almost every week!!! Not to mention the times where she would call her personal masseuse for a home service. She can’t get enough of it. 5 hours of massage, she can handle it; she can be massaged forever actually!!! At first, I can’t get it..I can’t understand why is she addicted to it? What I do know is that she’s tired from work, that’s reasonable; she’s an ER physician having 48 hours of duty. Nevertheless, is that a reason to overindulge yourself into so much pampering?

Well, I really can’t identify with her not until she brought me with her in a spa in West Ave. named “Humanessence Spa”. It is located in the 3rd flr of a certain building near Caltex in West Ave. She availed of……what else? Body massage + body scrub + footspa with pedicure which is in a promo that month which costs 1,050 all-in-all. She forced me to avail of a body scrub as well and a footspa with pedicure, that’s 680.00. Being the frugal person that I am, My jaw dropped big time and my first reaction was “grabe naman, ang mahal..” (Oh my God…it’s expensive.) and my sister said..”ako na!! worth it naman eh.” (My treat. Don’t worry, it’s worth it.) I conceded. Her treat. Who won’t say no to a free service? 


Then my journey to wellness starts….Before you can be allowed to walk in the lounge area, you will be required to leave your footwear in the reception area, a staff will put your footwear in a shoe locker and will give you another set of rubber slippers which is the only slippers allowed in walking around the spa and a key to your personal locker to those availing of the body services. The lounge area is divided into 4 parts, there are 5 lazy boy’s chair towards an approximately 50-in TV. There are two sofa sets adjacent with each other. From here, you can also watch TV There is a bar area but it is not functioning as such, it only functions as an area for preparation of coffee and tea and last is the 6 super comfortable chairs for the footspa, pedicure and manicure services. The lounge area is shared by both men and women but of course, the massage and shower areas are separate. I am not aware if there was a couple massage room, I am single so don’t ask me. (bitter?)

For those who are availing of body massage and body scrub services, you will be asked to take a shower (you can opt not to take the shower if you just took a bath) and you can also use the steam sauna if you want to. After which, a towel, shorts which can fit all sizes (so to my fellow plump ladies, don’t fret) and a cotton bathrobe will be provided.

For those who don’t have the luxury of time and always in a hurry, you might be disappointed with the long waiting hours before you can be accommodated. If you arrived there at 11pm, expect to go home at around 2-3am. Although you are free to take a nap in their comfy chairs (I do it all the time). Anyway, if you fell asleep, they will call your attention if it is your turn. If you are not sleepy, you can also watch TV while sipping a cup of coffee or tea. They serve coffee or tea upon request until supply lasts. And if you are lucky, possibly, you will be left alone in the lounge area and you can watch the TV and treat it your own. Grab the remote control. Browse channels. You can do anything you want actually.

As for the service, it was great! The downside of it, you will have to be naked, (although I haven’t seen a spa that will not require you to take your clothes off) but don’t be bothered, the lights are so dim; the staff can only see your silhouette. So I guess this treatment will not be a relaxing experience for the conservative types. Initially, they will let you lie down on your stomach then on your back. The scrub consists of the actual scrubbing starting from your feet up to your neck. Following that, you will be required to take a shower (this time it is mandatory). Next, your whole body will be applied with honey…as in pure honey mixed with a small amount of hot water. When the staff is applying the honey, I feel like I am a pancake. I can smell myself. I almost wanna lick myself, kidding! The honey will stay for 15 minutes. Shower again to rinse off the honey and it’s done. The service took about 30minutes. The effect fascinates me considering this is my first time. I have done this way back when I was 18 but this was different, my skin was the smoothest. My skin had never been that smooth. The foot spa is also good but nothing extraordinary if you will compare it to other spas. Perhaps, the great thing is the pedicure because I didn’t feel any pain. I nearly fell asleep when they are doing my toenails when I am expecting it to be really painful since I have deep in-growns.

Right after every service, they will give you a tip envelope with their name if in case you want to give them a tip for their service and it is your discretion if you want to give it directly to the staff or leave it in the tip box.

When we got home, I feel the need to avail of these services twice a month or at least once a month. My sister grinned, as if saying..”I told you you understand…” and I immediately defended myself saying “It’s not that I am getting addicted to it…My skin needs it…” ahahahahaahhahaha….

Before, I thought I can do it better myself but I was wrong, it’s a good feeling that you just have to lie down or sit back and relax and let somebody else do it for you. In view of all of these, I highly recommend Humanessence Spa for everyone who is so stressed out (just be sure you have a lot of time to kill). I though this was expensive but upon research of all other spas, it’s cheaper.  (That’s what matters to me the most…lol) So check it out guys!

Who would have guessed? Now, this is my bonding experience with my total-opposite sister! Aside from eating, by the way!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Chic-Boy. So-so.

Since I first saw Chic-boy in West Ave., I have always wanted to try it. Months have passed and I haven't even tried it yet and last week, finally, after going to the spa, i've experienced it with my sister and my mom.

On the outside, it looks like the food will range from 150-250 per person. but upon entering, the ambience can be compared to that of Mang Inasal and I was quite surprised that the prices are cheap. We ordered cebu lechon meal and the inihaw na liempo meal. Each meal is only 99 pesos!!! That's a treat! Mind you, the meal is with an unlimited serving of soup and rice. IN addition to that, if you want unlimited iced tea, you would only add 25 pesos. Thus, all in all, for the 3 of us, we only paid 373 pesos!!! I was happy about that!

However, while I was satisfied with the affordability of the meals, I was disappointed with the meal itself. I am not that good in cooking but it seems to me that my grilled liempo is better than their inihaw na liempo. The liempo was underseasoned and not that juicy as I desired liempos to be. Also, i've already tasted the original cebu lechon directly from Cebu and this is really different but not as underseasoned as the liempo. On the other hand, the soup is good.

And there's something more that made up for it.

There is one waiter there named "Aries" which is outstanding in customer service. You need not tell him to refill whatever. He will approach you before you even call him and the best of it, he did everything with a smile. We can't help but notice him because he stands out from the rest and we want to help him in our own ways so we ask to manager if we can make a commendation for Aries. Indeed, when you are giving good service, you will be rewarded because the supervisor told us that Aries is the "Employee for the month" and we hope that he will stay as is for as long as he is wearing that smile on his face ready to serve the customers and we also hope that all the waiters will take Aries as their model.

Over-all, from 1 to 10, 10 as the highest, i'll give Chic-Boy in West Ave. a grade of  7 and here is the breakdown:
Ambience                7
Affordability            8
Taste                       4
Customer Service    9

DISCLAIMER: I believe that Chic-Boy is into franchising so I would like to make it clear that this review is based on my experience in the West Ave. branch I don't know about the other branches. That only shows that sometimes, franchise agreements can be really risky because every franchisee holds the name of the company so the franchisor of Chic-boy shall really look into this.

If I will go back, maybe I'll try some other branches when I'm out of budget! CIAO!