Thursday, February 15, 2018

In Place Where Everything Is Made Of (?) (Guangzhou, China)

It was quite recently when China made their crew visa validity into full year rather than the old, 6 months term. I used to exclude China layover on my desired places to bid, as my attempt to avoid the hassle of visa application. When I heard the good news, I knew it was finally time I work on requirements and explore the country where everything is made of.

There's nothing better in Guangzhou than its legit Chinese food. Asians will always be Asians and  although my mother could probably only mention fried rice as the food I can eat all day, everyday; we, Filipinos know just how well we adapted the Chinese cuisine. So a taste of Chinese food in between kebabs, shawarma and biryani is definitely a taste of home.

The prices of these humongous servings are comparable to that of Phils so even the budget itself feels homey. Alhamdulillah my housemate discovered a halal certified restaurant, so eating Chinese food worry-free, became more heavenly.

Above is the address for the mentioned restaurant. Just present it to the taxi driver as communication may be quite challenging when  you have zero knowledge of their native language. I recommend having google translate app ready and a list of places you would like to visit in Chinese translation.

Of course shopping comes second. I had no plan of buying a lot but the low prices are too much to disregard. With good haggling skills, you can get the items for only half of the prices in our local boutiques in Philippines. I came back to our hotel carrying a plastic full of cheap clothes, footwear and whatnot.
Because we went out straight after the flight plus the 10 degree weather I was not prepared of,  I believe any picture of myself on that day isn't worth sharing in this blog. lol. Still I hadn't went through a full tour of the city, perhaps later, when the temperature will feel like that of Philippines.
Short layover indeed, but I can say no regrets on the hassle of visa application. :)

This entry was posted in

Monday, February 12, 2018

Life With Wings : Pros and Cons

I can still freshly recall the days of my admirable discipline when the main thing I prayed for was for me to become a flight attendant. From boosting my self-confidence, to practicing all the easy make up tricks, and maintaining my body weight. Confession: I tried the military diet with little modification, yet the calorie count was overall the same. My fear of exceeding my weight limit was overwhelming I had grown used on having satisfactory stomach, until I got to the point when losing one more kilo and my weight will be under the limit. My undying determination after being rejected on my first attempt is another thing I keep in mind. Remembering such days has become my way of being optimistic on moments when I can no longer picture myself in my all blue uniform years from now. Behind the luxury and glam, flight attendant's life isn't all smiles.

A month ago, someone left a comment on my contact page inquiring about the pros and cons of being a flight attendant. I apologize that it took me a month to respond but I've spent my days recently only in 36000 ft, otherwise, on sleeping off.

So, I figured, for some reason, it's always better to begin with the downside:

  • Health -  changes in timezone, jetlag, not to mention  the long hours of standing which is why I never considered knee-high stockings. The variation in working hours is a major con as well; today I'm having a night flight, tomorrow I'll have an early morning one. How do you adjust your sleep with that? Sleeping pills has become best friend of some, but no matter how naturally made the label claims to be, I always choose the natural way. I believe I have mastered the art of changing my sleeping pattern. 
  • You are never home - on most occasions. Alhamdulillah for our company, they give us the eventuality of going home every once in a while. Some girls do it monthly by the way, yet only after the headache of bidding and trading. Even with such benefit, the probability of being home on every family occasion there is, is impossible. I remember spending my 25th birthday alone in our apartment, relying on the internet connection to bury the truth that despite my gratefulness for all the blessings I received, there was a small part of me that wished I was in somewhere else. The number of monthsaries I spent physically together with my boyfriend is countable within my fingers. I missed both of my parents' birthday last year; and for this year's record, I might not be present on my niece' first ever graduation day. 
  • Pleasing people - is the most usual thing you'd do next to breathing. I remember my old teenage self reblogging typographies on how we should never care what others would think and we are not obligated to please everyone. You may wonder how I survive my everyday work, but I believe that's what maturity does to people. When you start a customer-oriented job, you must prepare yourself  with abundance of patience for people who will blame and complain on you on every possible reason there is. Being open-minded and putting yourself into their shoes help most of the time. Certainly there will be instances when people will become too irrational on you and the thought of it won't easily just go away. Emotions will overrule your senses.I do not tolerate inferiority, but daily and slowly, I'm learning not to take things personally; and maybe, just maybe, I think this has become my fate for me to learn and practice the beautiful patience and understanding (which actually makes me think this could pass on the positive side).
  • You do not get to practice your profession - Obviously a personal note because this is something I miss on random nights. Sure I had passengers with headache, fever, and all that, but these are incomparable on the adrenaline of saving someone in the middle of life and death. 

Plus side:

  • Travel - I've been on destinations I never  thought I could visit before. Explored 13 countries in my less than two years experience in this job; and the likelihood of adding more to that due to other destinations we operate, plus the perks of free and discounted tickets is a major plus. I was never the wanderlust enthusiast and travelling wasn't my top reason why this has become my dream, but as I experienced exploring city one after the other, I understood why someone would save up for it. 
  • Going Home - every once in a while, apart from our yearly vacation is still so much better than going home only once a year. Other professionals weren't blessed with such privilege and this is one of the main reasons why I chose this career and my company.
  • Salary - I tried submitting my application as a nurse abroad, and with my three years of experience in my profession, I was offered with only half of my salary today. Their basis is something I have no idea of, but same thing happens in the Philippines - newly hired flight attendants earn more than newly hired nurses.
  • Different set of colleague every working day - with an exception of my flying partner of course. Conflicts in workplace could be something unavoidable; the good thing is,  the bitch I flew with today will be as good as non existent for the next months or years or forever. Unless I become very, very, very, unfortunate, I will get to work with her again the next day. 
  • You get to learn a little something about other nationalities - Flying to other destinations means interacting with their people as well. Between the small talks and greetings, plus good observation, you can differentiate one nationality from the other.
  • Upgrading your interpersonal skills on the next level - I wasn't always good with small talks and I believe I still am. Obviously I'm still not the "ma-PA" type, yet because I work with various kinds of people everyday, it taught me well how to adjust and become more friendlier. lol

So I think that's that. Please know that everything here is based on my personal experience, so the pros and cons may vary with each person. To end this post, here's a caption I posted just days before my graduation way back in 2016 <3

All these new experiences make me feel that I'm living up to my full potential :-)

Nothing but love, xoxo

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

London, Once Again

When I updated the fiance of my future whereabouts, he responded with an inquiry, that needless to say, I haven't bother to think about for a while. "Pang ilan London mo na yan?" It was four months or so that I haven't had a layover in the place and I clearly remember how the adrenaline and excitement for the coming shopping spree made us left the hotel in quick 10 minutes during my last visit. This month, nevertheless, London was on my priority list, not for me to splurge, but to see the famous Winter Wonderland and witness first hand the lights of Oxford Street.

The fiance's question left me reflecting on how, with the number of times I came to London, why do I get the feeling I have only seen so little of it? The places on my list I have yet to visit was as long as it was last year. Knowing our layover will start in the morning, I was determined to scratch a few destinations off my list.

1. First stop - King's Cross Station
 A tour in Warner Bros Studio is an ultimate bucket list, but since a limited number of tickets are sold in a day, I'm still waiting for the perfect timing. Anyway, the platform 9 3/4 station still fueled with joy my HP fanatic heart.

Beside the station is an HP souvenir shop where they sell all sort of HP stuff mostly categorized by houses - from key chains, magnets, jackets, and what have you. I was eyeing on the Marauder's Map, but since I didn't have extra pounds with me, we left the place with a vow to buy it next time. 

2. Buckingham Palace

A close up photograph will undeniably reveal the fatigue in my eyes. The temperature was dropping as the sun started to disappear beneath the horizon. The pain on my toes was too much to ignore either; but the night was young, and we just started on our second destination.

Notice beyond the gate.

Ayesa and I and the palace behind. :-)

3. Green Park

It was not on my list but I'm happy it's like a pre-destination before you can get on to Buckingham. :-) Not entirely certain if it was the lack of oxygen or too much walking, but my feet demanded rest and with its view, surely there was no better place to sit , relax and rest. I imagine the place would be lovelier in spring. 

4. Oxford Street

So here's a spoiler -  we didn't make it to Winter Wonderland. Because 1. Exhaustion is replacing all my energy and 2. With the temperature, never did I plan to get on the rides, plus all I ever wanted was to see the place. So we spent the rest of the evening admiring the beautiful lights of Oxford Street.

Plus a little shopping. *lol

Oxford Street was jam-packed as always. Year-end sale is just around the corner so tourist and locals will definitely make the most out of it. I couldn't remember the exact time we decided to go home, yet I do know Ayesa and I were sleeping for the greater part throughout the trip. By the time we were just one bus ride away from the hotel, the temperature was too much to bear. What I thought earlier was overdressed was obviously the contrary at that moment. Winter has its ways of making me hate it. 
Nonetheless, I still found myself bidding for London next month <3

Alhamdulillah we arrived in the hotel safe and sound. 
This entry was posted in

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Life Lately Volume 1

So I gave another attempt on Game of Thrones, and the next thing I knew, I finished one season in a day. Brutal killings and betrayals are still not of my liking, but the twist and turn are too much to sleep on. Also, I have been patiently watching Star Wars series - something not of my interest as well, but the boyfriend is an avid fan and I am the best girlfriend, ever (lol). Only halfway done with it so I'm not giving any feedback just yet.

My playlist "Rania's Chill Vibes" on my boyfriend's spotify account is still on repeat just as how it was a month ago. The latest song I added was released back in 1999 by Savage Garden. I am certainly the last person you would want to converse with in the subject of music.

While I continuously fail with my healthy meal, the contrary happens with my water intake. I found myself opting for water more often than before, and my intake of sodas is now limited to 2-3 cans in a month.

All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr - About a german boy and a french girl trapped in the time of World War II. If not for Game of Thrones, I would have finished this book by now. I try to think of a possible ending to its story every time I read, but my brain cannot produce any predictions. Well, I do expect it to be happy, or if not, at least a hopeful one.

Lucknow, India - The city view surprised me a little too late when I had my lunch shortly before our flight back to base. The day previous of that, I just locked myself in my room with internet on like the introvert that I am. Perhaps, next time!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Spending My Days Off (The Rania Way) + Paris Travel Video

  •  If it wasn’t for my conscience, I wouldn’t be carrying yet another plastic bag with me, on top of the other five, full of greens and oranges and all that seems to be good for my well-being. I ain’t sick first and foremost; it’s just my conscience, knocking, reminding me to be good to my system - a byproduct of adulting I believe. To be fair enough, I decided to have junk and greens one after the other, more like a reward and punishment system. Not entirely healthy you may say, and I tell you, still better than nothing. Cutting the chase, I’ve been trying to eat less of fried and adding more of veggies to my daily diet. 
  • Fixed my closet that partly resulted to a dress up game as what I supposed. Cleaned the room, changed the sheets; Finished two cycles of laundry plus did a little handwashing of the delicates. Everything is waiting to be folded and ironed right now. 
  • Binge-watched some of the series on my list. Will be starting on Riverdale’s season two right after this. Is it just me or the show’s ending notes seems to be a good mobile ringtone? yes? And oh, I saw the first five episodes of game of thrones, and, I don't know , just not my cup of tea. 
  • Writing my 4th post, in this month. It’s a record, you guys! plus I got to edit and upload my long overdue Paris travel video !

 I still have clips waiting to be edited, perhaps on my days off next month.
Meanwhile, my seldomly updated youtube channel is here.

  •  Excluding the chores, I literally,  just savored my days off through watching and cooking and eating. Nonetheless, such blissful days will be over soon as I have a busy week ahead. This might be my finale post for the month, wishing you all a lovely November~

Monday, October 16, 2017

What Happened in New York Does Not Stay in New York

I do hope you are not expecting me to be stealing something, using illegal medicines or anything of some sort, as I didn’t.

It was a long and chill 14 hours flight. Our drive to the hotel was enough to regain back some strength but what happened with me was otherwise. My brain would like to sleep yet my eyes were open almost the entire trip looking on what was there to see through the window. Because hello? It’s New York! The city that never sleeps! The chance of having another visit is highly possible, nonetheless, still had that first time feels ~

It felt just about a minute when I took some time to rest and lay down before I started prepping up again as our layover just started. A free bus service to the subway was provided by the hotel so the struggle with directions obviously started within the metro.

Vanessa and I badly wanted to explore the whole of New York yet clearly we only had few hours to spend. Add up the fact that we cannot abuse our bodies much more as our strength were already drained from the flight; with that, we decided to go to the most likely, reachable places.

First stop: Brooklyn Bridge

We were told sunset will be around 6:30 PM and we had only less than two hours left to be there. We were lost at first but eventually found our way just right before the night sky showed up.

What came to view when the moon was up was stunningly beautiful.

Above photo obviously does not give justice to that. It was too lovely my camera cannot even focus on me lol

Wished there was more time to savor the view but time was running and there’s still more to see so we headed to our next goal.

Next and final stop: Times Square

Few hours left till midnight and still, people are everywhere. Several shops were still open so I got to buy my every layover, must have, souvenirs.

I was up and moving for 24 hours or so, that when we reached the center of Times Square, there’s nothing much that I can do apart from admiring the place. We still managed to take couple of photos and did several poses along with this gang, which by the way, we payed for 20 bucks.

I also got to see the famous red stairs which was, by the way, too crowded that night so I was happy enough to see it in person. A shooting of movie or show or whatever apparently happened that time that people were still busy taking photos and videos of what was left, so I took one for me as well. Lol.

We went back to our hotel sleeping along the way as that was how exhausted we were. Alhamdulillah we didn’t miss the stop nor lost our way. The whole experience, despite how exhausting it was, is surreal - the fact that I walked the streets and see places in person that I watched only in movies before. I cannot say when my next visit to NYC will be, but I do hope I'll see the Statue of Liberty by then. *wink
This entry was posted in

Saturday, October 14, 2017


Consider yourself warned, SPOILER ALERT!

Yes. I am seriously making a post for this because I have loved TVD since my early college days and my post series depression isn’t just going away. I don’t think people I talk to everyday would understand my heartbreak over the finale. There is no blame on them as they did not know how way back in my late teenage years I have developed my fascination on this series. Several new shows have been aired and became more popular yet TVD remained my ultimate, favorite one. I still remember my old self getting hooked on its first ever season during the old twilight era and this show had saved me from my Edward Cullen obsession. I was never the one who religiously watch the episodes every single week as life got in the way. But when things are okay and I had the chance, I had spent my time not on the latest award-winning movies, but catching up on this series. You, perhaps, is wondering what was in it that I loved - well, first was the never ending thrill and twist - and I literally mean THRILL; okay, so you see, I am more of a bookish person than a movie one, so I get bored easily with videos and all that, but not with this show - it kept my eyes glued to the screen for the whole 40 minutes and I love just how I always wonder what’s gonna happen next. Beyond that, was the whole brotherly and true love emotions the characters have portrayed excellently. I had shed bucket of tears for each season and every single one reminded me the importance of not turning your back to your family.

So what are my thoughts on its finale?

To be honest, I was imagining a more, happy ending - wherein Damon and Stefan are saved, delena married along with Stelena and Enzo and Bonnie, and everyone of them. I should have known it does not always work that way.

Stefan’s death was just something unimaginable for me as I had watched the two brothers saved each other every single time. I could almost feel Damon’s grief but when I try to analyze everything, Stefan’s life had worked out well enough even before the finale - well I mean, he got back his humanity on and got married to the love of his life - and since there is always a twist for every ending - there is no other character that suits it well more than Stefan. On another note, I wish they made Enzo free from the new dimension so he could marry Bonnie because being stuck there forever isn’t a justifiable ending for his wilidly romantic character. Moreover,  I expected more of the Damon and Elena come back scene - I imagined heartbreakingly lines of how Damon had waited for her for the longest time followed by a long passionate kiss - but, I couldn’t blame them. I’m glad enough that Nina Dobrev came back. It must have been really uncomfortable for the two.  Nevertheless, the last scene couldn’t be more perfect and I was once again impressed as how Paul walker and Ian Somerhalder portrayed between that hug the happiness the two brothers had felt when they saw each other once again.

I will surely gonna miss how those two brothers had melted my heart all throughout these years. I am presently searching for a new series to watch but i don't think i will ever like something the way i like tvd -  just as the way we feel with our favorite pet or our favorite book. 

Thank you TVD, since 2009.