“The present is the ever moving shadow that divides yesterday from tomorrow. In that lies HOPE.”
Hope. I have written this word in my heart and mind on the first day of 2018 while on a trip going back to the city. I was so rolled up with life’s irrepressible circumstances that dragged me down to the heights of self-pity and loneliness. I cannot say that life is always meant for struggles because in the face of all these circumstances, we will always see the shadows of hope lurking around us.
Just like the picture, the shadows may leave footprints of doubt. We do not know what we will face ahead because we are too much focused on what’s behind us. This life is meant to be traveled on a long and dark pathway. But, along the pathway, we see the light. This only means that we are not in total darkness as we journey. There is still light and so goes with hope.
Hope hides different faces. You might see it in a face in the crowd frowning at you. It might be somewhere under your pillows or even in your pockets smiling back at you. Or with movies while you’re tears roll down at one of the scenes. Or you could’ve read it in a bible passage and you just didn’t focus on it. Life is but a mystery and we will never be able solve its mysteries. All we can do is to hang on even if it seems difficult because there is always hope to help us embrace the fullness of life.
aerial view of Tacloban, Leyte
a beautiful spot uptown Leyte
bamboo bridges and nipa houses
kids rowing and playing
amazing rice fields
I will capture your precious time as your read along a special tour to a place that became known to the world when the Typhoon Haiyan utterly destroyed this province in 2013. I will be your tour guide for the day and if you plan to visit the Philippines, do not forget to look up and search for Leyte.
Leyte is mostly surrounded by water and geographically speaking, it is one of the reasons why this place can be heavily damaged by natural calamities. This and some other reasons may eventually affect the people’s way of life.
Life in Leyte is simple. You can see the aerial view of Tacloban which is known to be the capital city of Leyte. It is not a big city but it is the doorway to the many treasures Leyte hides in herself. Notice the beautiful tree planted between those two bodies of water, a pool and the sea. You can always escape to a fresh and beautiful scene where you don’t need to spend your precious gold. You only need extra hours to do that. Look at the bridges. It is not always made of metal or cement but of bamboos and other special trees. You will experience movements while you walk like those of the hanging bridges in the forests. Dip yourself in the water if you must and savor the splendidly cool sea water. Hear the laughter of the kids while they row their small boats as they enjoy their time while it lasts. Pass a bumpy road on a motorcycle and you won’t even notice that your hair is already full of dust. In a way, it is not at all that bumpy but it is in some area. In addition, do not forget to smell the morning breeze with an aroma of freshly plowed rice field. You will love it.
Close you eyes and imagine all these. You will suddenly forget the noise from the bustling city. Linger onto that for an instant before you slowly turn you worktable upside down.
Have you asked yourself, “Where is My Beloved?” In all fairness, I often ask myself this question. And it may seem so hard to give an answer at this moment but I will in God’s perfect time. Just don’t ask me too often (winks). Okay, let us focus on this challenge because I will again do a different take on this one. The photos I will share were taken randomly with no thoughts and no particular angle. I just wanted to focus on the hopes of finding the beloved we are so waiting for quite sometime now (or should I say, for a very long time).
They say, “there is no forever.” Is it just me or that includes you who is in search of your forever, too? The moon and the stars may not be that aligned for us to meet at this time and so the search goes on and on until it lasts forever. That goes for you as well. They say, “try and try until you succeed.” So, off we go and live the same pattern we always do. And guess what? Sometimes, someone shows up and do the things a beloved does and then we ask ourselves, “Is this the one?” We prayed and prayed until the only answer we get is SILENCE.
a man in search of his beloved
As a result, we try to go and find the answers in the places where we can find solitude and tranquility. Most of the time, we have to wait and let the course of time take its action and we just have to see where the waiting will take us.
a woman who seeks solitude and tranquility in the hope of finding her beloved
And where? Maybe, to the one who completes that missing piece in us. Or maybe to the one whom we turned down at first but never walked away from us. Or to the one who augments being in love in all the places we go. I am not talking about the PDA stuff but about someone who respects us both in public and private places.
a couple who augments love to each other as beloveds
We never know where it will take us. We can only hope and pray for the best. Just wait and keep asking, “Where is my beloved?” Who knows that person might just be around the corner and we do not know just yet. For all the love seekers out here and there, let us storm heaven with our prayers so it will be shaken and give us our only BELOVED!
The Sunken Temple also called Wat Saam Prasob is found in Sangklaburi. This temple is known for being weathered , old and worn because it has been there sitting on the water for more than 30 years.
This temple was in the heart of a small town that was destroyed when Vajiralongkorn Dam in Thailand was built. These are the only remnants that can be seen until today of what was once a pivot place of the Mon and the Karen tribes. Many people visit this place by boat.
Weathered, old and almost forgotten as it may seem but I still wonder why many people still come to visit this place. It may be because of the unfortunate situation that this place went through and people are curious about it or is it because of the history that were rooted when this place was once on the ground and not under water. Oh well, let the place speak alone for itself!
Another meaning of corner is a force where people or animals are placed in a situation that’s difficult to escape. My take this week focuses on animals being cornered and placed in large farms that would make people happy. Even though, they make us laugh and happy for a little while yet in that instance they wanted to shout and say, “Hey, I have feelings, too” won’t they?
In the corner of their eyes, you’ll find a tiny speck of mote! Would that mote mean another thing such as sadness?
And even the beauty of those amazing stripes embrace loneliness or is it just me? (haha)
Is that a grin or a smile? Look at how the corner of it’s eye and it’s mouth! Don’t they coincide?
Oh, hush, precious ones! Don’t worry too much, you are loved by many.
As we get older, we want things done immediately. We don’t like to waste our time. We rush things up to get them done right away. But, whether we like it or not, we always get distracted with the many little things around us.
Some things just cannot escape our vivid minds. They like to stay especially when we are up to something important. They always choose to remain. And they always win. Yes? Of course, who wouldn’t want to think of these sweet little distractions? They make us look shiny, bubbly and feeling light.
When I’m too down, too tired and very exhausted in everything, I take all these sweet little distractions with me. I always take myself down memory lane and reminisce sweet, good, happy and even sad memories. Then, if my mind wanders too much, I will need some ice cream to put me back to focus. But where would I usually end? I will always find myself eating something really good and delicious. And from there, I’ll be able to wrap things up for the day. Oh, shiny!
good memories to look back to
ice cream cake for focusing
spaghetti, good food to wrap up
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.
All these are truly satisfaction. I love ice creams and anything that’s cold and melts in my mouth. Taste a thirst-quenching halo-halo, a Filipino dessert. You’ll love it ’till the last drop!
Halo-halo, a Filipino delight
Kuya J’s halo-halo
Crushed ice sprinkled with condensed milk and flavored drink. Experience the taste of different colors only in Thailand.
Thai iced dessert
Cool flavored drinks that makes you click your camera button. Smileys all over you!
Buko pandan juice with smiley faces
A delicious Filipino salad. Sweet! You will forget your name but you still want to eat more.
But, of course! Chocolates are heaven! I can’t live without them (big smile).
all about chocolates
Whenever I get to eat them, I am already satisfied. Some of my favorite things are simple but they’re so sweet. And I am, too! (winks)
Doing focus at night is really a challenge especially when you’re just a trying hard photographer like me. However, I always have a good feeling when I tried to take that shot and the outcome looks fantastic.
Lights at night, on the other hand, is an extra challenge. My photos for this week are only on a practice basis that turned out okay. I love the Victoria Harbor view at night. It could be a busy night out with family and friends. The doll with a very spectacular beauty shined even more with those dramatic bokeh. But, take a closer look, she’s hiding something inside her. Ohhh…And lamps sold at a night market served its purpose in letting me try out more bokehs. I call it big and small light circles. I also took a photo of a night lamp on a cozy night and an extraordinary firework right on time when it boomed. I thought I could make another beautiful bokeh but it turned out it’s already sleeping time and darkness is soon to arrest me. Happy viewing everyone!
beautiful Hongkong at night..
a doll for a bokeh model
lamps and bokehs