An Identifier

I scanned the glass shelf of a perfumery shop looking for that brand which fitted my budget and I couldn’t help but mentally label certain bottles with my friends’ names who use them often, if not all the time. Finally, I found one that gives a light and cool whiff. The purchase is completed and is happy. So you see, I am not inclined to constantly wearing a specific scent. At the moment, I have a few of them and I randomly choose whatever tickles my fancy, so to speak.

The smell of fish and chips whets my appetite. So does grilled fish. Although I am not a fussy eater, I struggle with the strong and penetrating smell of canned sardines in tomato sauce, especially if it’s just been microwaved! I don’t  understand how my son could eat that!

I like the following: scented candles, diffusers, scented plug-ins. My husband hates them! And oh, those car deodorizers! I find them missing every time my hubby borrows my car. And guess where I found them? They were stashed in the glove compartment or in the bin! I did ask why he finds them repulsive, he smugly said, ‘ I like fresh air’. Oh, alright.

While traveling on the highway, one relative said to me, ‘You’ve forgotten to take a shower again!’ Everyone laughed and I realised we were passing through a town where a thriving and massive poultry business is located.

We continued to travel away to where the fresh air reminded us of how amazing it is to breathe and live! Indeed, life itself is a lot like perfume!


I am not perfect
And never going to be
When I make mistakes 
Speak and let me see

When I invite
And you're in my company
I smile from my heart
And that's sincere 
as real as ever be

I'd rather you say no
than stand there and
Use a dagger behind my back
Your piercing tongue so 
deceitful and cruel, too 

Remember this and listen well
Behind a story you think you know 
Is another you DO NOT know
Ergo, cease the judgment, 
leave me be!

You make choices
So do I
You live a life
Let me live mine.
(Aug 2016)

Hometown Landmark (Kapangan, Benguet)

the front entrance

The building has seen better days but I now consider it a landmark.

This is the first and only Catholic Church that I have known in my hometown of Balakbak, Kapangan, Benguet, Philippines. It has spanned four generations (and counting) of my lifetime. It is a pleasant surprise that it’s able to withstand the test of time.

sidewall. the building is surrounded by a wide lawn with a volleyball court on the opposite side

Here’s something else to behold: Hometown Fortress

Hometown Fortress (Dakiwagan: Up Close and Personal)

early morning panorama

a majestic magnificence

I’ve been hesitant about sharing this one other wonder of nature. I guess I’ve seen enough of what happens when some individuals exploit the very thing they admire. I prefer that the world remains oblivious to its existence. Nevertheless, let me put my negativity aside and find the right words to justify such beauty and splendour.

Dakiwagan mountain looms majestically over a tight-knit Kankanaey community of Balakbak, Kapangan, Benguet, Philippines.

There was a time when I have braved the cold, almost frosty mornings to trek to that opposite hill and capture a stunning scene of clouds which to me, seemed to have descended from the sky to kiss and tame Dakiwagan’s gargantuan frame. I have lingered long enough to watch the same clouds dissipate, while the sun maneuvered its way to envelope and waken a slumbering gigantic rock! A priceless panorama!

sun envelopes a giant!

Dakiwagan Is like an enormous mural on someone’s wall. It is the neighborhood’s awesome backdrop and at daytime, it appears to be keeping watch as the folks go about their daily routine wherever they may be; at home, the hills, the farm or the ricefields. I have wandered around this humble hometown of mine with the view of the mountain always visible at every turn.
As the day draws to a close, it gets engulfed in darkness and at first glance, becomes ominous. I have always accorded it a second look and my heart comfortably likened it to a fortress that shelters its people through the night.

Faces keeping watch

fortress through the night

I feel blessed that this magnificence is a part and parcel of my childhood. I took it for granted for a long time. But with more and more people exploring further than the common tourist spots, I now feel very protective of this hidden gem.

Photo credits: dehl/rizza