May Kwento Ako #55 : Meeting Nobu Chef Matsuhisa

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.


May Kwento Ako #45 : Lipat Bahay ( Moving homes ), in France

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.

Classic apartment building in France. So nice, isn’t it ?
I took a video but I don’t know how to post it. Items are brought up through
this automated ladder!
Yeah, the ladder goes over the pedestrians heads.
That truck below left contains all the furniture and personal effects that will be
brought up into the apartment.

May Kwento Ako #62 : The Goldenberg Mansion, Malacanang Palace Grounds, Manila

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.

May Kwento Ako #61 : A few stories and my photographs Chateaux Vaux le Vicomte

By the entrance of the Chateaux Vaux Le Vicompte

I am so thankful for this Video from YouTube’s worldfrombeyondHD for enlightening me with more details about this fabled and storied chateaux. To the folks behind this feature, I would like to send my appreciation.

And to Doctor Joel Estanislao for taking some fine photos of me. As a tourist traveling with a camera, rarely do I have good photos of myself.

The beauty of the Chateaux lies in the many stories some almost forgotten. In the tv series, Versailles, someone whispered that because it was impossible to use the palace for the film shooting, they scouted for the next best venue and ended up filming in this Chateaux.

I have to search more stories about the people that built this and those that lived here. The immense stories and the tragedies shadowing the happy times that lay hidden behind its thick walls.

The other stories lie in the YouTube documentary attached. Lest not forget the visuals, the experiences and the lessons.

Photo taken from the terrace. A view that was once admired by kings and nobles. There’s more to this property that I obviously missed.
From inside the Chateaux. Awesome, isn’t it?
How they did their accents inside the Chateaux.
They were true masters back in the day. A study of texture and the proportion here done just right.
The balance and composition were never too little nor too much for me.
The facade….imagine this being built before the Palace of Versailles was expanded to what we now know it to be. A study of clean symmetry.
The rear side of the Chateaux is just as magnificent as the facade of the main entrance.

May Kwento Ako #60 : A Neighborhood Directory of Covid19 – Testing Centers

  1. Covid Testing Centers in Alabang, Eastwood and Makati

2. Covid Testing Center in Ayala Avenue Extension, Makati

3. Covid Testing Center in Poblacion, Makati

Thoughout the recent months of quarantine, I have had to rely mostly on sources shared by friends and neighbours through Viber groups, Facebook, etc. To make it easier for me to go back to, I have decided to build this directory for our future reference. We are in this together. But the names and numbers may change so please do not blame me.

Will delete this post once the Covid19 virus has been totally blasted from Earth.

  1. HealthFirst Clinic, Reliance United : Call 0919 056 0490 (Smart); Text 0916 723 1206. 9AM – 5 PM Monday – Saturday. Located in Alabang, Eastwood, Makati, etc.

2. AEGLE Wellness Center : https://www.aeglewellnesscenter.com Call/Text 0917 821 9795, 0949 889 6237 (Smart), 02 8737 0077. Email info@aeglewellnesscenter.com

3. Project Safe Ph : For antigen testing for Php 3,000. Location : Matilde Street in nearby Poblacion. Contact Person : Mr Josh Aquino +63 917 817 1246, : http://www.projectsafe.ph or through Project Safe Ph in Facebook.

4. Executive Screening Center : For antigen testing. Location : 8th Floor of the Centuria Medical Makati near the Century Mall where the International School used to be. https://www.centuriamedical.com.ph/centers/executive-screening-center/

5. One Hospital Command Center is in a referral facility centre for the Metro Manila area. An initiative of the Department of Health in cooperation with the MMDA and other branches of the government.

6. LabMobilePh https://www.labmobile.ph

Covid19 Health Facility Referral Center in Metro Manila

Covid19 Testing Center


8. More recent additions to this page.

October 27, 2020

9. And another.

October 27, 2020

Continue reading “May Kwento Ako #60 : A Neighborhood Directory of Covid19 – Testing Centers”