I have to thank friends for pointing me to this direction. First, I asked where to go for Sunday Mass. There was one Roman Catholic Church literally outside the window where I was staying in but I would not be able to understand most of the Sunday Service.
Hence, I went to a nice chapel frequented by Pinoys living in the city in the 8th Arr. And it felt good to me. Basta. The Service went very well. : )
Using the borrowed wifi that I brought with me, I walked towards this place which I only knew by name and nothing else. It was not a modern hotel but I am glad it was not. But it had a lot of good visual treats which I thought was always perfect for a walk around town.
Candidly, I asked the two young ladies at the desk if the restaurant was open and I could take a long around. They said that it would be opened soon but I could not dine without a reservation. Playing it cool, I simply said “Ok, thank you.” Until the maitre d’ walked in and asked what. They said I wanted to walk in and look around but did not have reservations as the evening was fully booked. The maitre d’ who was about my age asked me “Alone ?” I said, Yes. He asked “Would you want to dine ?” I said “Yes but no table according to the young ladies”. Then, he said … “I can give you a table if 1.5 hours was enough for me.” So, I said, “1.5 hours is plenty”. And it was a nice, nice evening. And he dropped by my table every now and then for a chat. And once I told him, “My 1.5 hours is almost over but I am just a little over half way with my dinner”. Then, he winked. So, we both had a good brief chuckle! Message sent, message received. Hahaha. Hay naku, Ginoo!
Learned that the interiors were done not too long ago by Philippe Starck.
The extra treat of the evening was meeting Chef Matsuhisa, a nice, young man who spoke good English, of course. He asked me if I had dined in the Nobu in Manila. I was a bit embarrassed not to have had the pleasure. He proudly claimed in a very pleasant way that he had spent 2 weeks during the opening of the Nobu-Manila which one day, I hope to have the pleasure of dining in.
But not during these times of quarantine, unfortunately. In due time.
In more modern cities where there are high rise buildings, modern conveniences like service elevators or lifts are common. But how about in centuries old cities like Paris where elevators are uncommon and often a luxury in homes. Oftentimes, only two people can fit into the elevator; suitcases excluded. Would they bring up the goods by the winding staircases ?
The thought of how people brought up their beds, sofas, dining tables in centuries old apartments in France has crossed my mind. But I parked the thought until one day, someone mentioned to me how it was done. And luckily, I witnessed an actual move shortly after.
There is an automated ladder that hauls up the goods in crates and someone up there receives it, presumably to unload and unpack.
I was amazed and glad it is now automated, probably only in recent years.
I took a video but I don’t know how to post the video of the actual crate going up the ladder – yet. Someday, hopefully.
It is not everyday that we find 19th century homes in the Philippines still. This home, the grand mansion known as the Goldenberg Mansion was one of those that stood tall and proud by the exclusive enclave by the presidential palace, the Malacanang Palace in the Santa Ana, Manila area post world war 2 but I was told that in recent decades, this home has also been lost.
Much has been written about this mansion which I will not write about. But I want to say that once upon a time, a friend invited to join them as they cover an event in this mansion composed mostly of professional photographers with me and my friend as blurring hobbyists.
I post this as I fear that my external hard drive may one day crash and I will forever loose these photos and not enjoy them in my old age. Meanwhile, allow me to share these photos. Some of them blurred, I was in my first year taking up photography. I didn’t have the lens then. My crusty Nikon D80 and I were just getting acquainted. So, whoever said that it was easy …. I disagree.