Thursday, October 17, 2013

Bangkok Thailand: The Shopping Paradise

I’ve never thought about how blessed and lucky I am every time I am given the chance to travel and explore the beauty and culture of other countries. Actually, traveling is my best antidote for stress and occasional depression. Yes, you read it right. Just last month (September), despite tons of paper works and multiple tasks on my shoulder, I grabbed the chance to pause and breathe for a while. Another YOLO experience. Actually I had already been to the coastal area of Phuket Thailand in October 2011 during the Virgo Cruise Ship vacation sponsored by the City Government for its department heads. So thankful for the early Christmas gift of our very generous Santa Claus.  However, since we were on a cruise, there was only a very limited time to go around Thailand. So our hopes of lurking around Bangkok were quite impossible to realize because of the distance to Thailand’s main tourist attractions and shopping destinations.

Today, Thailand is considered as one of the best tourist destinations all over the world due to its favorable tourist climate. It’s been my hope and dream to return to this country, particularly to Bangkok, Thailand’s capital city.  Finally, I made it once again! Maybe it’s the result of my persistent hopes and desire to go back to Thailand. As quoted from the book, “The Secret,” by Rhonda Byrne: “Everything is possible, nothing is impossible. There are no limits. Whatever you can dream of can be yours, when you use, ‘The Secret.’ It is based on the law of attraction and claims that positive thinking can create life-changing results such as increase in wealth, health, and happiness.” Positive thinking drove me to go back to Bangkok, and I was so amazed with the available fashion craze- from clothing, bags, foods, garments and even house decors too, from high-end items to cheapest finds. For a person like me who is so thrifty and into cheapest finds, this place is a haven. Let’s start the bargain hunting!

Chatuchak or Jatujak Weekend Market-is the largest market in Thailand and the world’s largest weekend market. Most stalls are only open on Saturdays and Sundays. It is literally closed during weekdays, as we tried to go back on Monday morning to assist one of our companions who happened to be out of our group when we explored the chatuchak market. Our experience to taste Thailand’s delicious coconut ice cream happened here in this market.

Pratunam Market-Is one of Bangkok’s major markets and is Thailand’s largest clothing market. The name Pratunam means “Water gate”. You can buy clothes in bulk order for a cheaper price. The bigger bulk of clothes you buy, the bigger the discounts. I was able to buy here my coach bag in replica. However, I rarely used it, maybe i am still comfortable to use authentic one.
Floating Market-Is routinely crowded with hundreds of vendors and purchasers floating in their small rowing boats selling and buying agricultural products and local food, which are mostly brought from their own nearby orchards. Therefore, it is a very attractive place for tourists to see this old style and traditional way of selling and buying goods. Here, I find most items are quite expensive, unlike in Chatuchak Market. So we just looked around and ate Thailand’s famous sticky rice in mango.

SIAM Paragon Mall- Is a shopping mall in Bangkok, Thailand. It is one of the biggest shopping centres in Asia. This is where signature brands and authentic fashion finds are located. My fashion home base! lol..There are lots of sumptuous meals offered in this mall.

The Grand Palace-Is a complex building at the heart of Bangkok, Thailand. For quite some time since 1782, the palace had been the official residence of the Kings of Siam. But since 1925 the king, the royal family and the government have no longer permanently settled at the place, and have moved to other residences. The place is a “must visit” for those who will come to Thailand for a tour. The place is so amazing.

The Elephant Ride- Always part of the traveler’s “must do” list is elephant trekking, though some people are against using elephants this way saying the animals are not treated well. Elephants are an important part of Thai culture and their way of life. They are a traditional symbol of royal power. My experience here is just as happy and as positive as is seen in the pictures!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Personal Roadmap: The Palawan Experience

The trying hard Game Changer Model :-)
(Photo ops with the senior officers of various government agency, I am honored to have this souvenir photo with them)

(Souvenir Photo with Freeport Area of Bataan (FAB) Planning Officer Mr. Carry Lontoc, Chairman: Dr. Jesus Estanislao-2nd to the Left, and ISA President, Mr. Francisco C. Eizmendi Jr, and City HRM Officer Ms. Cristina Apostol during PGS Boot Camp-Master Class at Hotel Centro, Palawan)

Vision:      A person who is willing to share of himself in whatever capacity he can and make  a difference to peoples life.

Mission:    1. To continuously inclined himself to glorify God and be of service to mankind.
                  2. To be financially able and open in helping people to improved their way of living .

Core Values:   Love of GOD
Since I was a young person, it’s been my hope to make a difference in somebody else’s life. I think most of us will agree that this is a noble vision. However, noble as it might be, it is not so easy to realize. For many of us, perhaps we equate “making a difference” only in terms of sharing material resources.

In college I finished Bachelor in Seconday Education. I had my masters degree in the same field. However, too late in life I realized that it was not what I wanted. I wanted to be able to “help” in more concrete terms. So, I shifted mindset and decided I wanted to be in business. Why business? It’s because only in business can one earn money fast. And what do I need money for? Because I want to be able to help family, relatives and friends in needs in anyway that I can. But business requires capital and I haven’t had much of that. And so, I haven’t had a great many opportunities to help because I am financially constrained. Like most of us, I have fallen into the trap of interpreting “making a difference” just in terms of being able to provide material things to other people without thought for anything else that one could probably share, too.

How I ended up in government service is a great mystery to me as it was not really a serious consideration in my younger years. I am now on my 16th year in public service. I hold a responsible position, which is both challenging and stressful. Still, there is this gnawing feeling inside of me that makes me doubt if I am in the right place, if I am doing what I should be doing. However, where I am now I am also capable of “making a difference.”

I make a difference in my staff whom I coach to improve their performance;
I make a difference in my superior who gets praises for the supports and contribution done by my department;
I make a difference in my relatives, friends and acquaintances who get benefited by information and access from the city government just because I work there;
I make a difference in my family who also share in whatever blessings I may obtain from my work.

Where I am now could well be the best place for me to be, for now, if by being where I am is used to give glory to our LORD GOD through sharing not only my material resources, but my knowledge, my time, my life’s purpose as well.

"We should never judge them by appearance, they have their own beauty and purpose on earth"

"Someday, I will be wearing a real kind of toque too!"