Monday, December 5, 2011

New life, new country.

Five days from today and I will be celebrating my first monthsary here in Auckland, New Zealand. Until now, it still feels like a dream to me that my plan of living in this country where corruption is low and work-life balance is the priority has been finally fulfilled.

Like many migrants, especially those who came from a third world country like mine, my journey towards this country has not been a walk in the park. Apart from the tedious paperwork and money shelled out for the whole trip, a lot has been sacrificed - physical, psychological, social, and spiritual aspects of myself.

After I received the mostly prayed email from the immigration congratulating me for my approved application, the joy that I felt was short-lived, because I know this is only just the beginning. I spend my remaining months prepping myself for this new chapter of my life. I used this time to meet with friends and family, budgeting, reading news about the country and update myself with blogs of migrants in New Zealand just to know what to expect from the country once I arrive there.

I think it’s better to go there with realistic expectations but with positive mindset. I keep reminding myself that it’s only just me in this new country, so there’s no one to rely on but to myself. If you think you’re comfortable with independence and self-reliance and doesn’t mind talking to strangers, then I think you can manage moving to a new country, otherwise, move your flight schedule and use that time to change yourself to better adapt to this new life.

If you have friends here and have extra cash, I suggest you visit this country first and check if this is the country for you. Personal experience is still better than reading about it. The immigration offers limited purpose visa which is free if you plan to visit the country for not more than 60 days. Just get the feel of the country first, the standard of living, the people and work industry before you invest your hard-earned money in the application and migrating.

As of today, the overall mood of the country is just alright. John Keys is still the prime minister after the elections last week, and it’s now summer season. A lot of part time and casual job offers for the Christmas season. That’s all I can share for now and will try to post more stuff about my new life here.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Take your part in the metrowide cleanup!



Thursday, October 6, 2011

RIP Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs' life reminded us that sometimes breaking from the norm is a good thing. Though I can't afford your iPhone, I still appreciate what you've done to this world. 



Thank you and rest in peace...

Friday, September 30, 2011

I'm tired of hearing: "It's out of stock, just try the dept. store or the other mall..."

Have you ever encountered trying to buy a product and then the salesperson manning the store/stall/boutique/booth tells you that they don't have a stock and try checking department store or the nearby mall?

Image courtesy of zazzle.com


I get really irritated when I hear this!

I mean don't get me wrong, I do understand, the every day plight of salespeople
who stood for hours everyday and almost selling their soul to everyone just to
get that sale. And I even emphatize with them when they almost chase possible buyers
to the point of helping them carry their bags just to have them buy their products.

But to tell me, "Just try the Dept Store or the nearby mall," I think it's a major No-No in the sales industry.

First and foremost, as a salesperson, it's your job to provide that product that the customer is asking. The customer exerted his/her time, effort and gas to directly visit your store and buy your product. And then when they arrived there,
you'll just downright turn them down and tell them to visit another store? What about telling them that you don't have it yet, but you'll make some calls/arrangements to have the product transferred from the other branch to your store? At least, the customer, even if he's annoyed because he's there for nothing, he might feel a little apologetic because he saw you exerted an effort to give him what he wants. And if he's a little patient, he might accept your offer and pay you. And there you have it, a sale was done!

And because of what you did, you might have just earned a loyal customer and this customer will tell his friends about his buying experience and will resulted to more visits to your store. Isn't that a better scenario than telling the customer, "Sorry, we don't have it, try another store?"

Just my opinion. What do you think?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Breaking Dawn tracklist has been revealed!

The Twilight movie franchise is not only famous for introducing the vampire teen phenomenon to us, but many people, including non-vampire fans has been raving about the movie soundtracks because of its indie-feel and has been the main avenue for musicians like Sia, Florence and the Machine, Lykke Li and Muse to break into the mainstream music industry.

Now, the fourth installment in this movie franchise, Breaking Dawn, has released the full tracklist of its official soundtrack.



Leading the pack is Grammy Award winner Bruno Mars with his single "It will Rain." According to an interview, Bruno Mars said that the song will reveal the darker side of love. Listen to the song:



Album art courtesy of http://breakingdawnthesoundtrack.com/

Twilight Breaking Dawn Soundtrack will hit the stores and online on November 8, 2011.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Promoting: Philippine R&B songs!

Thanks to a Filipino R&B station, Wave 89.1, I am exposed to new music especially those "underground" songs that weren't promoted commercially.

These past days, these two songs from www.myspace.com/flipmusicphilippines were constantly playing in my head. I would just like to promote these songs and hope you'll like them as much as I do!





Be proud Pinoy!

Breaking Dawn new trailer!

Twilight fans rejoice!

The moment that we've been waiting for...

The Twilight Breaking Dawn is here!


Video from http://robpattinson.blogspot.com/


Don't forget NOVEMBER 18, 2011 in theaters worldwide.

Friday, September 9, 2011

The Breaking Dawn new poster is here!

Be still my beating heart...

Summit Entertainment, the company behind the production of Breaking Dawn - the fourth installment in the Twilight Saga,has released the poster of the film which will be released in theaters this November.

Two new posters have been released courtesy of Yahoo Movies. One is the poster of Bella (Kristen Stewart) and Edward (Robert Pattinson), and the other one is Jacob (Taylor Lautner).



With the release of these posters, expect a rollout of all promotional materials and television guestings in the coming days. Twilighters will be alive again!

Check the Yahoo Movies on Tuesday, Sept. 13 at 7:30pm ET/4:30pm PT for the exclusive premiere of the official trailer.

Breaking Dawn will be release on November 18, 2011.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Cine Europa is back baby!

Cine Europa, the annual European film showcase in Shangri-la Plaza is back!


Festival will run from September 9 – 18. Though the admission is free, it will be on a first come, first serve basis.

Below is the schedule of the film screening.


If you want to check the synopsis of each film, you can visit this site.

See you on Friday!

Monday, June 6, 2011

New Twilight Breaking Dawn Trailer!

It's here vampelles! The Twilight Breaking Dawn trailer is here!


Youtube video courtesy of naty90fly

In theaters, November 18, 2011.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Spellbound glowworm caves

Two hours away from Auckland is Waitomo, a must-visit place for its famous glowworm caves. Waitomo offers a lot of cave tours to choose from but in our case, we decided to go with Spellbound Glowworm Tours.


Booking is necessary and it is important to tell the guide if you have medical concerns that may affect your caving activity. What I liked about this tour is that the group is limited to 12 people, a smaller group means better view of the cave. Price per adult is $67.50 and includes shuttle service going to the cave and 3 1/2 hour combined tour of the glowworm and walk-through cave. Unlike other cave tours, Spellbound allows you to take pictures inside the cave and the best thing about it is that you won't get wet while touring the cave.


On your way to the cave, the guide will give a short history of Waitomo and how the place evolved into one of the best caving places in the country. On the middle of the ride, you can choose whether you'll have a 5-minute walk to the cave or ride in the shuttle on your way there. I suggest you take a walk to absorb the sights and warm yourself up for a long cave walk ahead.


Before entering the cave, the guide will give you some safety instructions and special caving helmets. You don't need to be worried about your safety inside the cave because the walkway has hand railings, some parts of the floor are matted to avoid slipping. All you have to do is to mind your head for you may bump into low-hanging stalactites. Halfway inside the cave, you will immediately be mesmerized by the glowing cave ceiling. Though photography is allowed, they will appreciate it if you don't use flash inside the cave.






Thirty minutes of your tour will be spent on a raft ride under the glowworms. The raft ride is just gentle and slow which will enable you to look at the glowworms better.



The tour does not end there, after a short coffee break, you will proceed with a tour of another cave.







This cave doesn't have many glowworms in it but you will appreciate its cave features because the Spellbound people worked round the clock building well-lit and safe walkways.

All-in-all this tour is one of the best and well-worth your money because the tour is long and features two caves. The guide is well-informed of the caves' history and friendly.  The cave is well-maintained and apart from the built walkways, there aren't any part of the cave that has been altered so you can appreciate the cave's genuinity and marvel at one of New Zealand's natural wonders.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Jessie St. James is truly back on Glee

If you haven't read my first blog yet about Jessie St. James returning to Glee, then I'll reiterate it again.

THE GROFF IS BACK ON GLEE FOR THE LAST 3 EPISODES!!!

And as proof, here's the sneak peek on the latest episode entitled "Prom Queen." I really can't wait!


Becca Fitzpatrick's Silence Cover

Becca Fitzpatrick, the author of the Hush Hush Series, has launched the cover art of the third book, Silence.

Image from http://beccafitzpatrick.com/


The cover shows Patch carrying Nora somewhere by the sea. I think, based on the photo, both of them just came from a huge battle against their arch enemy. Who is the enemy? I have a clue, but I'm still not sure if it's right. Let's just wait for its release on October 4, 2011.

About Silence

The noise between Patch and Nora is gone. They've overcome the secrets riddled in Patch's dark past...bridged two irreconcilable worlds...faced heart-wrenching tests of betrayal, loyalty and trust...and all for a love that will transcend the boundary between heaven and earth. Armed with nothing but their absolute faith in one another, Patch and Nora enter a desperate fight to stop a villain who holds the power to shatter everything they've worked for—and their love—forever.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

New Transformers and Harry Potter Trailers!

July is now my new bestfriend because of these two movies!

Transformers: Dark of the Moon


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2

Twilight: Breaking Dawn teaser photos

Thanks to Summit Entertainment, People and Entertainment Weekly, we, Twi-hards can now feast our eyes to this new Breaking Dawn photos - which is scheduled to be shown in cinemas this November.


Photo courtesy of Summit Entertainment and People.com

Photo courtesy of Summit Entertainment and People.com

Image credit: Andrew Cooper, Summit Entertainment and ew.com

For more photos, buy the latest issue of People Magazine and Special Breaking Dawn issue of Entertainment Weekly.

New Zealand's National Museum - Te Papa Tongarewa

Te Papa Tongarewa - a walking distance from where we lived in Wellington (YHA Wellington) and in English means "Container of Treasures," is New Zealand's national (and perhaps the biggest) museum with collection ranging from Art, History, Pacific, Maori and Natural Environment.




Entrance to this magnificent building is free but if you want to donate, feel free to drop a few bills in their designated donation boxes.

The five-floor (I think) museum has a cafe, shop, parking, library and a customer service counter for museum assistance and guided tours.

The museum is home also of the perfectly preserved (and perhaps one of the world's biggest) squid.




Apart from their wide collection of preserved artifacts and restored antiques, the museum offers state-of-the-art and interactive displays where you can not only learn, but have fun as well.



A hologram presentation of Maori's Boating Culture. 



Produce your own music with this laser thingy. Just point your hand towards a circle and you will hear a beat/melody.  Run your hands towards all the circles and a song will come up.


The museum is open everyday from 10 AM to 6 PM. Entrance is free except for some halls inside the museum where there are special exhibitions and short-term display of a collection.

All is well in Wellington

People sometimes had misconceptions that Auckland is New Zealand's capital city. Apparently I'm one of them.

Wellington, the so-called Windy City, is New Zealand's capital city. It is where all the major government offices, the parliament, and some biggest companies are located.

If you're traveling by land, it will take you at least 12 hours before reaching Wellington. Thank God for the Wright Brothers, because it will only take you 30 minutes to reach Wellington by plane.

One of the advantages of online shopping is that you'll be able to check the new plane promos like the one from Air New Zealand where we got our ticket to Wellington for less than $50.



Air New Zealand is one great flight! They served us snacks in the plain. You can choose from cookie or lollies and tea, coffee or just plain water for drinks.


Finally after minutes of waiting, we're finally in Wellington. It's freaking windy!!!


Unlike in Auckland, where almost all people have cars, most of the Welly people use the bus, tram and tram bus to go around the city. Maybe because the streets are a little narrow and there aren't enough parking spaces for cars unlike in Auckland. Actually, if you love walking or biking, I think you will be able to go around the city and some of its nearby suburbs.


One of the main attractions of the city is Cuba Street - where shopping, arts and culture can be found in one street.


Apart from brands like Posties, Hallensteins, Valley Girl, etc., Cuba Street is also a mecca for vintage and collectibles shopping. Vintage clothes, music records, paintings, comic books, vintage and collectible toys --- they can be found here.



I love Slow Boat Record store...



Make sure to browse their music catalogue, you may find price bargains for vintage albums and music collectibles. They also sell second-hand music items and vintage movie poster reprints for film buffs.

A few meters from Cuba Street is Quay street. Quay street is like their business district and where all high-end shopping can be done.


One of the marvelous attractions of this city are its old buildings that were restored and were currrently used as shopping and office buildings.


A tour of Wellington won't be complete without a visit to the Parliament House. It is where the prime minister, John Keys works and where all the upcoming house bills are debated and became laws eventually. 


The Parliament House is open for touring. Make sure to go inside and check the schedule of their tours. These are free but you are not allowed to bring any gadgets and cameras with you. Make sure also that you are decently dressed when entering the building. I think those who are wearing sandos, slippers or any kind of house clothes are not permitted inside.


If it's a day of House Debate in the Parliament, after the tour, you can tell the guide that you are interested to watch the Debate. There you'll see the congress people in action.
 
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