Texture

Textures are everywhere. They can be interpreted with how we see things, how we describe things and how we even feel. All these make up the texture of the things that surround us.

My photos are stone formations of a Buddhist belief done in a particular area in Thailand. You see the stones as hard and rough. But how do you feel seeing these stones piled like the way they are? Having seen them for the first time drew my attention to getting the reason behind this belief. I, somehow, managed to know the reason but I could go on and on asking many whys. So, I may just conclude that what we make in our lives are textures of how we live that life.

Unusual

River Kwai (pronounced as Kw-ey) is an unusual exciting place to visit while in the Western part of Thailand. The best time to visit this river is first thing after sunshine. I can guarantee an awesome and unusual experience when you get up close as an inch away from a passing train. People stand on the railways to take photos and selfies as the train approaches. We do not get this kind of experience in other places. If ever you find your way in this place, do not miss the chance to take a selfie on the passing train along the River Kwai bridge.

Culture Heritage

Exposing the beautiful artifacts of The Land of Smiles – Thailand.  These are few of my photo collections from many years ago.

Thai culture has so far been untouched.  No matter how much people are exposed to the modernity of this world, they were able to keep their culture just as how it was planted to them by their forefathers.  They have kept this heritage for more than 100 years.  Just as it is.  Amazing Thailand!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Ambience

via Photo Challenge: Ambience

These photos were taken during a trip on a Christmas-New Year holiday to the West of Thailand.  This is considered one of the biggest provinces in the West with extravagant hidden beauty inside it.  A trip to Kanchanaburi is worth on the top list places to visit when in Thailand.

I’ll be featuring a place called Erawan Waterfalls – where you need to cross different paths going to the 7th level.  You can play in the water as you go along the levels and of course enjoy beautiful scenery around.  Koi fish roam around every level in the water.  So, free foot and body spa. SPLENDID!  Take some selfies and have fun.

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Level 1

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Level 2

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Level 3

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Level 4

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Level 5

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Level 6

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Level 7

BON VOYAGE 2016

2016 is almost at its end of trail and before I reach the final trail, I want to look back at how this year has been for me.  Some people may have prospered a lot in 2016 – all praises to God for His providence. Others may have stayed the same and wasn’t able to find what they wanted in their lives – keep searching, doors may open soon.  But, for me, 2016 has been a diverse year.

At the first quarter of the year, God blessed me with unexpected blessings.  I was given an unexpected favor at work.  I advanced to a higher position in my workplace.  I must admit, it felt good having been recognized as a good example among other foreign teachers.  I did my job well.  On top of that, I was given a salary raise.  It was not that much but it made me happy.

Then, I was able to travel with my family.  One dream accomplished, although, I am looking forward to more travels with them.  We went to the place where my best friend, ate Dexie, and I planned to go.  So I let her come along with us.  Must I say, two dreams accomplished in a row.  I am thankful to God for allowing us to experience beautiful things while we still can.

Unfortunately, it didn’t go well on the third month.  Ate Dexie got sick and became very ill.  I had to bring her to the hospital.  Thailand hospitals were never a good experience for me. I felt repulsive at some staff and doctors where communication was always the problem.  At an emergency room of one of the famous public hospitals in Pathumthani would never accept patients without fever, cut or bruise.  It was disappointing when you cannot explain what you really need to explain.  And with my little knowledge in speaking Thai, did not help explaining to them that Ate Dexie needs immediate aid because according to them her vital signs were all normal.  Goodness!  That time, she haven’t had eaten for a day and you call it normal!  To hell with vital signs – the person was not at all in her USUAL state!  Excuse the language.  So, I decided to bring her to an expensive hospital.  One night stay was worth a lot and we had to borrow money so she could be checked and be taken cared of.  They did endoscopy and biopsy altogether.  After seven days of waiting for the final results, the doctor only confirmed that she had cancer and it was malignant but he didn’t know what stage and what to do next.  She was recommended to see another doctor.  And then again, I was disappointed.  Doctors are supposed to be life savers but it was not like that at that time.   So, I had to encourage her to go home and do further check-ups in the Philippines where communication was never a problem.  We were thankful to our church pastors; Pastor Gutlay, Pastor Pran and members of Grace Baptist Church, Suanprigthai, Pathumthani for being an encouragement at that time and also for giving out financial support to her.

It did not end there, though.  I had encountered a lot following that.  After knowing her real condition, which was gastric cancer (stage 4), I had to do something to help her.  I had to sell our important things and I had to raise some funds to help her in her medication.  Doing it alone was not easy.  I asked help from my, her and her sister’s friends’ list in Facebook but few have responded.  I cannot complain because it was a matter between life and death.  All I knew was to do what I can do to help her.  Few months before the third quarter ended, I decided to go home and visited her.  I wanted to tell her that I would always be there for her.  I wanted to show her what it’s like to have a real friend – wondering what it would be like when it’s my turn to be on my deathbed.

Entering the fourth quarter was the hardest.   I had lost one of the best people in my life to cancer.  I lost one precious stone that cannot be replaced.  I will always treasure her as one best part of my existence.  This experience has changed many perspectives in my life.  How am I right now?  I would always say, “I’ll be fine,” but, seriously, I have to overcome the greatest fear I have – losing people in my life.  I am not fine but I will be – in time!

Unexpected things happen and it is not easy to accept these unexpected changes whether it is good or bad.  I may leave the footprints of 2016 behind but I am hoping I could immediately let go of the crucial things that happened to me this year. I am sad of losing my best friend but I know that we will meet someday in Heaven.  I just have to learn to accept this lonely stage of life.  I am blessed I still have my family and praying that God will grant our wishes as a family.  I expect more challenges in 2017 as I place in my heart the happy and hurtful things in 2016.  I hope God will give me more courage and strength to face my life’s battles fearlessly and fiercely as I say BON VOYAGE 2016.

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looking forward to a Prosperous 2017 (Kanchanaburi-Dec2016)

Weekly Photo Challenge: Extra, Extra

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Sarasin Bridge, Pa Nga, Phuket, Thailand

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right side view going to the bridge

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extra view from the bridge

Extra, extra it is! This is a good place to see when one plans to come to Thailand. These were taken at Pa Nga, Phuket – the famous Sarasin Bridge. Road trippers usually get off the road when they pass by an outstanding blue-green sea water and amazing blue sky along the way. They usually make a U-turn at the end of the motorway on picture #3 if they really want to savor the view of the bridge. A nice late afternoon walk is preferable when the stunning sun is on it’s way to bed.

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Threshold

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Arch Passage

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Piazza Grande, Pakchong

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the window to a new experience

Threshold is an opening to a new state or experience.  This was a new place to discover – an Italian setting located around 1 hour from the main roads of Pakchong, Thailand.  It was a good adventure I would always fondly recall.

The adventure started when I and my friend, Dexie, decided to go on an adventure on our one day holiday.  We don’t want to sit and sleep all day so we hit off the road early morning and head off to an unusual place we don’t usually go.  What made the adventure fun was that we don’t know the place, we don’t have a map, we speak little Thai and we don’t have much money.  But, we did it anyway. It was worth the risk.  Thankful that we were bold enough to go, at least.  I had much fun.

 

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflections

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a must see sunrise in Rayong, Thailand

This week’s challenge is all about Reflections.  A crisp early morning is a good way to reflect the way how your day goes.  I have always loved sunrises and even sunsets.  It reminds me of how to start a good day and how to end it well.

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Rayong, Thailand

It also reminds me of my God that never sleeps and never leaves His beloved. Indeed, He’s always there.  I am thankful that it’s always shown in every sunrise I get to capture in my camera.

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Bang Na Palace, Ayuthaya

And when I feel sad and really tired from everything I face in the world, I try to find a spot that exactly looks like this and I will feel refreshed.  For sure, I’ll go home renewed.

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Grace Baptist Church

But, when nature doesn’t help and I feel down and really troubled, I go to church to find God and seek peace and I always find Him there.  He will whisper to me, “Don’t worry my child, I will take care of you.”  Thank God, He’s always at my side. (FYI: it’s not good to go to church when you badly needed Him, it’s always good to be with Him every week 🙂 )

These are some of the ways I reflect at any situation I am in.  It has always helped me.  I must say, NATURE + GOD = PEACE.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Abandoned

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Taken in Chiang Mai’s Art in Paradise.  It’s an amazing 4D picture of an abandoned ship.

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Taken in one of the famous places ravaged by the strongest typhoon in 2013 – Haiyan (locally known Yolanda).  This is an old chapel in one of the city’s tourist spot – The Sto. Nino Shrine.  It was once the mansion of our First Lady Imelda Marcos.