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Twisted by Jessica Zafra – Pumping irony since 1994
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Archive for the ‘Places’

“Purpose of travel”

October 15, 2014 By: jessicazafra Category: In Traffic, Places, Traveling 3 Comments →

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Our real answers to the “Purpose of travel” item in the visa application form

1. Amok prevention. We love living here, but this city keeps pushing and pushing and pushing us and if we do not take a break we will snap. Take this morning. Please. In sane traffic, it would take us no more than ten minutes to get to the embassy for our appointment. This morning it took us an hour and a half, and the only reason the taxi driver agreed to drive us was because we bribed him. (Yeah there are taxi apps. Same principle: They’ll drive you if you’re willing to pay more. And the “kontrata” system is now legitimized as “tips”. In effect we are incentivizing asshole behavior, but people just want to get home safely and with the least aggravation.)

2. Sanity maintenance. We are very, very, very, very, very tired. We haven’t had a proper vacation in years. All our trips have been work assignments. In fact the last real vacation we had—”real” meaning we could do whatever we wanted and we didn’t have to say nice things about the trip sponsor or shut up when something went wrong—was eight years ago, in the same place.

2rueCazotte

3. Perspective. We love our country when we’re somewhere else and can think about it objectively.

4. The horror of sameness. We need to feel like an alien in an alien land. It makes us think better. Here we only feel like a freak. A bored, enervated freak.

5. The comfort of being in a place where people read books on the train—good books—and cafes give prizes to the best novels written on the premises.

What we wrote on the visa form

Tourism

A Sunday afternoon at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila

September 21, 2014 By: jessicazafra Category: Art, Places No Comments →

met open

We spent a few hours at the Met Open 2014, a benefit exhibition on contemporary art. Five eminent curators selected 208 artworks focusing on abstraction, painting, seriality, pop culture, myth and symbolism.

langenegger
Robert Langenegger

abaya
Leo Abaya

de guzman
Jaime De Guzman

vinluan
Paulo Vinluan

abueva
Napoleon Abueva

The five pieces shown above are among the artworks for sale. Proceeds will support the museum’s education and exhibition programs. Met Open 2014 opened today and will run until Saturday, 4 October 2014.

At the second floor galleries is the survey, The Philippine Contemporary Art Exhibition: To Scale the Past and the Possible.

junyee
Junyee

feleo
Roberto Feleo

eustaquio
Patricia Eustaquio

ossorio
Alfonso Osorio

barredo
Gabriel Barredo

tapaya
Rodel Tapaya

esquillo
Alfred Esquillo

jumalon
Winner Jumalon

The Metropolitan Museum of Manila is at the Bangko Sentral complex on Roxas Boulevard, Manila. The museum is open Mondays through Saturdays from 10am to 530pm. Entrance fee: Php100 for adults and students, Php80 for senior citizens. Visit www.metmuseum.ph or call (02)7087828 for more information.

What did the rest of the outfit look like?

September 18, 2014 By: jessicazafra Category: Antiquities, Cats, History, Places No Comments →

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1,500-Year-Old Claws Intrigue Archaeologists in Peru
By Alan Boyle

Archaeologists in Peru say they have unearthed the previously unknown tomb of a nobleman from a pre-Inca civilization known as the Moche. The tomb contained the remains of an adult male, plus artifacts indicating the man’s elite status, according to the Peruvian newspaper El Comercio.

Among the most intriguing artifacts are ornamental metal pieces fashioned to look like feline paws with claws. The paws may have been part of a ritual costume used in ceremonial combat, El Comercio reported. The loser would be sacrificed, while the winner would get the costume.

* * * * *

We need those gloves in order to level the playing field in our household. Maybe our cats will take us seriously and stop treating us like their serf. Not likely.

Traffic has eaten our lives

September 03, 2014 By: jessicazafra Category: In Traffic, Places 4 Comments →

interphoto_1297212999
Photo from InterAksyon

As lifelong veterans of traffic, we formulate explanations as to why it is so bad. These explanations are not thorough or accurate; in many cases, they’re not even right. They are increasingly desperate attempts to make sense of the black hole that swallows us up every time we go out on the street. They constitute a mantra of urban life.

The traffic is heavy because it is raining.
Because it is rush hour.
Because it is Friday.
Because it is payday.
Because there’s been a vehicular accident.
Because the highway is being repaired.
Because there are shopping malls right along the main thoroughfares.
Because the skyway is being constructed.
Because the truck ban has been lifted.
Because the trains aren’t running.
Because there are too many colorum buses.
Because there is no urban planning.
Because the motorists don’t follow basic road rules.
Because this and that.

Read our column at InterAksyon.

Locking up the “monkey mind” in Luang Prabang

September 01, 2014 By: jessicazafra Category: Places No Comments →

mekong-river-2

Notes from Luang Prabang
by Joven Cuanang

Our favorite neurologist Dr. Cuanang recently retired as chief medical officer of St. Luke’s, giving him more time to teach, see patients, attend to his art collection (Pinto Art Museum in Antipolo), travel, and write. This piece on his trip to Laos appeared yesterday in the Philippine Star.

serrure

According to their belief, every person has 32 minds and everyone is a carrier of a “monkey mind, foolish, indomitable, animal-like; locking one’s mind to his body helps the process of attaining wellness, happiness and encountering success in work-related endeavors.”

Read Notes from Luang Prabang.

Being tourists in your own city

August 18, 2014 By: jessicazafra Category: Places 6 Comments →

We love weekend markets, the ones that sell crafts, hand-made objects, home cooking, stuff you can’t get at the mall. Someone recommended the Saturday market in Escolta. We googled the location and turned up bright and early one Saturday…

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only to find that the market happens on a Saturday once a month, in which case it should probably be called a Monthly Market.

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The building, though, is beautiful, and we gather from the fliers advertising rooms for rent, largely empty.

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So we just pretended we were in Madrid. Then we walked over to Binondo for lunch.

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