Monthly Archives: November 2007

Rituals

It’s minutes to midnight and I’m already in bed, but – felt an urgent need to grab the chance to write something down.

I’ve put everything that needs putting away in the kitchen. I prepared the coffeemaker to brew the coffee after the timer strikes 6am. I have brushed my teeth and moisturized my face (a ritual I do in the morning after taking a bath, too.). I could’ve stayed up but I was tired.

Tomorrow is another day.

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Gathering dust on my bookshelf

Over the weekend, we overhauled our book case in the house and I “exiled” my limited library to the bottom-most shelf, and Angel got the middle shelf for his growing collection of books, and then I surrendered the last three tiers to Alan along with a fourth between the bottom and Angel’s.  By some miracle, he ran out of things to stack there so I actually got one more level.

I dutifully fixed the books in two rows at some point and just fixed them with no particular order.  I was struck by how many books I have yet to read amongst that collection of bargains and books I sought out.

Tonight I started reading John Grisham’s BLEACHERS.  So one thing I’m going to do in the next couple of days is inventory the books I will “schedule” to read, and I promise that I’m not going to buy any books until I’ve read at least three for each one I get.  It brings me back to one of my main frustrations of late which is that I haven’t had the chance to read as much as I have hoped I would at this point. 
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Overheard

Flustered man applying for a Schengen visa at the Belgian Consulate when asked for the papers they require: “Look, I’m a CPA, my health insurance here allows me to go to any doctor I want, maybe I’ll just go to another place…I went to your website and I didn’t see all these requirements you are asking of me.”

I discreetly hand him the 3-page printout of the requirements posted on the Belgian website…”I’ll just go to another country…” — lady behind the counter reminds him that the Belgian requirements hold true for all Schengen countries. Meanwhile, I breezed through with no problems because I had all my paperwork ready.

A friendly reminder: applying for a visa, as the French say on signs posted all over their consulate, is a privilege, NOT a right… So be polite and be nice — being denied by one embassy/consulate can mean being banned by all. I have to hand it to the ladies behind the visa windows — they held their cheerful countenance and refused to be cowed by the attitude the applicant was giving them. Now that’s professionalism.

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Post Long Weekend Blues

Don’t you just hate returning to work after a long weekend? More so a four-day one just like the Thanksgiving weekend that passed. I’m not complaining about the chance to recharge and just take things easy… Rather, I’m complaining about the end of such a break.

At least there’s two more such holidays coming — Christmas and New Year’s day fall on a tuesday, and our company gives us the eve.

Meanwhile, my day has been a bit nerve wracking as we try to get the boss home.

New York City is blanketed in thick fog tonight. The skyline is hidden behind darkness as not even the lights from the 59th Street bridge could be seen from our vantage point on the Queens side. It’s that type of weather that makes you want to just stay home and vegetate. Maybe brew a hot cup of coffee, throw a blanket around your shoulders and then put up your feet as you watch a movie.

Back to work, though… Rain or no rain, off to work we go.

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The Colors of Autumn

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Happy Thanksgiving!

From our home to yours,
here’s to everything that we have been blessed with.
Let us be thankful for all that we have…

Artwork by Angelo Gonzalez

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No little Christmas Tree

They’re not quite done yet but the tree is up.. I snapped this picture on the way to Alan from the Consulate on 5th Avenue, a few blocks away from Rockefeller Center.

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Playing Santa at MoMA

The company I work for is a corporate sponsor of MoMA (the Museum of Modern Art) and I am entitled to free admission plus one guest. (It used to be myself plus 4). I always get a kick out of giving away my free tickets, but I try to be discriminating about whom I choose to treat.

With a $20 entrance fee for adults, $16 for seniors and $14 (or something like that) for students, a freebie is a freebie. I picked 3 kids who had fallen in line and who were quite surprised to get the two tickets I proffered. Call it my Thanksgiving good deed.

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What’s for lunch?

I’m on my way back to the Philippine Consulate on Fifth Avenue to pick up my passport. I’m a tad bit early so that means I have time to pick up something before I get my passport at 2pm. I travelled light today but I packed my camera. Some of the stores have already unveiled their holiday decor, and for the most part, I just want to capture the feel of autumn in the city.

Although it is another cloudy day, it’s been pretty dry. The forecast for tomorrow’s holiday parade is pretty optimistic. They said it will warm up considerably which is good news for all those who will be participating. I’ve never watched one live, but perhaps one day when Angel is a little bigger.

I just passed Bergdorf-Goodman and I am seriously tempted to go down and take pictures. I had taken photos last year and this year’s store window displays are even more breath-taking!

The sun is starting to come out! Lucky for those who are spending their Thanksgiving holiday here in the big apple. Most Broadway shows are still cancelled because of an ongoing strike, but the big event here in New York this week is tomorrow’s parade anyway.

Saks Fifth Avenue has already unveiled its Christmas decor and people are queuing past to view the displays… They are better photographed at night so there is no glare or reflecton of the cars driving by.

After walking around, I saw an Au Bon Pain on 44th and I decided right there and then it was soup for me. I picked up a cup (as against a bowl) of Broccoli Cheddar soup and half a small baguette, and a 20 oz. bottle of soda — all for $6.69. I still have half an hour to kill so I’m thinking of going to Barnes and Noble to pick up a travel book about Belgium. I’m trying to remember where I put my coupons, though. (Foraging around in my purse…). Nope, not there… I have an additional 10% over my usual member discount and I’d hate not to use that. I guess no Barnes and Noble visit for me today.

Gotta head down to the consulate now…

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The Philippine Consulate in New York

I’m finally renewing my passport in preparation for our holiday trip. This is not my first time here as it’s already my second renewal here in New York. Unlike most people, I actually enjoy coming to this place where I find myself amongst our kababayans.

There’s a jovial and pleasant elderly gentleman trying to convince everyone who comes in to open an account at the bank he works for. Unfortunately, I’m already a customer. The non-Filipino lady with him gave me a keychain for being one.

So they told me to pick up my passport tomorrow. So I guess I’ll be back.

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