Jo to the world

18 04 2013
Ms_Jo_0413_00

Ms. Jo and her “dearest eNTeNG,” meeting up in Singapore for the very first time ever. I love how she has always referred to me that way.

MANY PERSONALITIES make me up.  So it is always a monumental task for someone to get me “get me”.  When I find people who do, I try not to lose them.

Where I used to work, I have never been made to feel really understood or really important any better than by Ms. Jo Damian.  She used to be the Senior Executive Assistant to a number of our company’s General Managers (think, Country Managers) before taking on the role of Senior Human Resources Business Partner.  At some point, she was – for all intents and purposes – our HR Manager.  She was a major force behind getting us all here in the Lion City, although nothing was in store for her for doing so.  I guess she got something better – unspoken appreciation, lifelong gratitude, and much love.  She is guaranteed of those, at least from me.

I worked with her on the biggest and highest level programs, and together, we handled most of the Site’s communications.  Our collaborative efforts culminated with the coffee table book “Faces of Memory,” to commemorate all the men and women who were part of our former company.  Call it vain, pointless conceit but that book is on my all–time Top 10 List.  Hahaha!

Coffee Table Book Core Team 04

Our official photo as the Editorial Team of the coffee table book “Faces of Memory”. With Ms. Jo and me are Jack (left) and Alfie (right).

 

Coffee Table Book Core Team 01

This was actually my favorite of all the photos. Haha! I love to have been immortalized in this reclining position. Notice the two wristwatches I have on? I do love stacking them.

 

Coffee Table Book Core Team 03

I’ve always felt that Ms. Jo treats me like her own son. Although she’s more like my big sister.

 

Coffee Table Book - Dedications 00

Ms. Jo wrote me a note on this page of my copy of “Faces of Memory”.

 

Coffee Table Book Core Team 02

What Filipino photo shoot is complete without the requisite wacky shot?! Hahaha!

Ms. Jo was here for a couple of days last week.  And while I missed the dinner in her honor, I was at least able to take her to the airport and see her off.  I put more weight to the latter, knowing all too well that that is one gesture I do only for the truly deserving.

Thanks, Ms. Jo.  And I shall see you again!

Ms_Jo_0413_02

We didn’t play with ramen. But we did have it for lunch. Alvin and I with Ms. Jo at Ajisen Ramen on the day of her flight back to Manila.

 

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Welcome back to Changi Airport Terminal 2!

 

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Ms. Jo took a Singapore Airlines flight back. I don’t know a better way to fly.

 

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Just two small pieces of luggage – a check-in in her favorite shade of purple and a carry-on (which is actually her laptop). The red bag contained lots of her favorite Bee Cheng Hiang beef jerky. The lambskin leather bag is actually my Longchamp Parisi, just joining in for the group shot.

 

Ms_Jo_0413_04

Ms. Jo knows me like the back of her hand. So when she had made it to the end of the line to the check-in, she knew that I would be grabbing that opportunity to snap shots away. She turned around on this one just in time to catch me striking a pose. Hahaha!

 

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This is the proper one.

 

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Alvin and Ms. Jo.

 

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Then it was my turn.

 

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Ms. Jo, in head-to-toe Marks & Spencer, against the backdrop of Changi Airport Terminal 2.

 

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Spectacles – Ray-Ban Classic Wayfarers in white. T-shirt – “Last Night The DJ Saved My Life” from Malaysia. Bottoms – Adidas running shorts. Wristwatch – Philip Stein Signature Large. Bag – Longchamp Parisi in lambskin leather trimmed with cowhide and/or goat skin. Shoes – TOMS in red corduroy.

 

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“Goodbye… it’s time for me to go…”

 

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Just one more for the road

 

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My reflection on the stainless steel frame of the departure area gate. We waited until Ms. Jo had cleared immigration.

 

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One more time for a selfie!

 

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Take away some FRESHNESS – a slice of New York Cheesecake and a venti Caramel Frappuccino.

 

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eNTeNG, Starbucks Coffee, Changi Airport Terminal 2, Singapore.

Copyright © 2013 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MunchTime™©.  All rights reserved

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SQ918

28 01 2013
SQ918 13 Wing

Just took off from Changi International Airport. I just always have to have a snap of the airplane’s wing against the land, the sea, and the sky.

IF YOU care for someone, it’s important to remember why they are in your life.

And everytime I’m up in the air that is exactly what I do.

I may have time for a movie – or a part of it (“Pitch Perfect” is on the cover of KrisWorld and “the perks of being a wallflower” and “Arbitrage” are also on the list!) – and most likely all the broadsheets on offer and a couple of magazines I’d pick up at times travel or any other book shop I pass by on the way to the gate.

SQ918 01 KrisWorld

Fat Amy is in the house!

But still, a lot of the three and a half hours I spend airborne is devoted to being breathless in anticipation of yet another homecoming.  And this feeling of being at home starts the very moment I get on board my Singapore Airlines flight.  Sweet.

SQ918 00 Panettone

On this trip, the Panettone was the most precious cargo.

 

SQ918 02 Longchamp Adidas

Before take-off, all carry-on luggage has to be stowed under the seat in front of you. I looked at my two bags and realized that I was traveling with a French and an Italian!

 

SQ918 05 Take-off and Wing

See you again soon, Lion City! … Before long, it was time to take off. I’ve always found my Singapore Airlines flights to keep their schedules really well.

 

SQ918 10 Wing

One of the views I love is when the sun breaks free from the clouds. So a photo is always requisite.

 

SQ918 03 KrisWorld Movies

The New Releases line-up has some of the best movies I’ve ever seen. I didn’t know which to start with.

 

SQ918 14 Fast Facts

The Philippines is featured on the latest issue of KrisFlyer. I love this boxed feature on my country’s “fast facts”.

 

SQ918 18 Passport

Before the food arrives, I make sure that I fill out all the disembakation forms required at the NAIA.

 

SQ918 19 Passport

I love my complimentary Singapore Airlines leather passport holder!

 

SQ918 20 Food

Yehey! The food arrives. That happens to be my third can of Campbell’s Tomato Juice! I always love it when they say, “Would you like the whole can?”

 

SQ918 21 Food

I asked for the fish with vegetables! Delish!

 

SQ918 25 Tissot

I wore one of my Tissots on this trip. And yes, a Charriol.

 

SQ918 26 Tissot

Right on time, we’re taxiing down the runway at the NAIA.

 

SQ918 28 NAIA Arrival

I’m home!

 

Copyright © 2013 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MunchTime™©.  All rights reserved





Panettone

21 01 2013
Tre Marie Panettone 02

TRE MARIE PANETTONE MILANESE SENZA CANDITI, on a seat beside me on board SQ918, departing for Manila. It shared space with my lambskin Longchamp.

MAKING FRIENDS with people from different cultures opens you up to learn about traditions outside your own.  They may be totally different on face value but, for all intents and purposes, quite the familiar.

One of the best gifts I got over the past holidays was TRE MARIE PANETTONE MILANESE SENZA CANDITI. Kuya Michele, who gave me the gift before his months–long assignment had ended, wanted me to have it with my family for the traditional Christmas Eve dinner.  He said that an Italian family Christmas dinner would not be complete without panettone.

So this premise meant I had to exercise all the self-control I could muster even when the pints of Ben & Jerry’s in the freezer had been calling out to me, asking to cozy up to wedges of this Italian Christmas cake, rich and fluffy with eggs and butter, made with sultana raisins, and as brandished on the box, made in the traditional Milanese way.

On my last flight home, I made it a point to handle this cake with utmost care, almost giving it its own seat on my Singapore Airlines flight.

True to expectations, it was devoured by my whole family on our much–delayed holiday dinner the very evening I arrived.  We had it with either regular ice cream or sugar–free frozen yogurt for my mom, together with excellent coffee.

Tre Marie Panettone 01

Taking good care of the cake meant resting it on a pillow. I did try to fit the seat belt around it. Hahaha!

 

Tre Marie Panettone 00

The day I picked up the panettone. Here it is, awash in sunlight at dusk.

 

Italian Lunch - Food 09 Panettone

The panettone at our Italian Christmas lunch at Claudio’s place on Orchard Turn.

 

Italian Lunch - Food 10 Panettone with Gelato

I’ve come to love panettone the way I first served it, with ice cream. Or in this case, with gelato.

 

Italian Lunch - Food 11 Panettone with Gelato

A tight shot of scrumptious panettone with vanilla bean and chocolate gelato.

 

 

Copyright © 2013 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MunchTime™©.  All rights reserved





Long-shum

28 11 2012

The Longchamp Parisis Men’s Cross-Body Bag in lambskin leather, trimmed with cowhide leather.

ONE OF my brothers gave me a genuine calf leather cross-body bag of French provenance that I have been wearing out like crazy (read: pinanghaharabas in the Filipino vernacular).  One lazy day, I emptied it of its contents, looked at it, and realized that I wouldn’t be able to stand to see it literally fall apart.  For purely sentimental reasons.

So what I did was reach for one of my many Kinokuniya (plastic) shopping bags – I must get at least 10 magazine titles from them every month – tumbled all of my daily essentials in and resolved that from that point hence, I would take the incarnation of a literal bagman.  A blue plastic Kinokuniya bagman.

Kinokuniya Shopping Bags

But to borrow the name of that game we used to play as kids – hide-and-seek – delight in the pleasures of natural hide and one shall find one’s self seeking to have it back.  So I had decided to get myself something I would be willing to wear out.

Before long I found myself overcoming my fear of the price tag in some of the shops here in Singapore, walked past their imposing, triumphal archways for doors, approached the first available sales associate, and in a calm voice asked, “Do you have this bag?… But in all natural leather?

Every time, my worn-out Kinokuniya (plastic) shopping bag would endure the stare before it (the stare), in all its expressionless botoxed glory, would move to me.  Often, I got a flat out “Sorry, but no.”  In a few instances, I got treated to a veritable run through of everything in the “spring summer” or “fall winter” line-up before I would just lift up once again my Kinokuniya and say, “Thanks but just like this.”

Then it was time to pay one of my Mama’s favorites a visit – Longchamp at Paragon Mall on Orchard.  For the first time in a long time, I didn’t need to ask for a sales associate’s help.  Because it was there at the top of the shelf at the back of the store, the section elevated by a short flight of steps.  I took it from its all-stainless steel display stand, got immediately captivated by the supple leather, and knew that it was the one.

The Longchamp Parisis Men’s Cross-Body Bag in lambskin leather, trimmed with cowhide leather (and goatskin leather per the sales associate) with palladium hardware.

I absolutely loved it at first sight.  Though I did find the price a bit prohibitive.  So after quite a lingering admiration, I decided to let it go.  But as with all things meant to be, I ended up losing sleep over it.

So one night when there was just simply no way of getting transported to dreamland with persistently nagging thoughts of lambskin leather, I got out of bed, showered, changed, and hopped on the Purple Line, changed to the Circle Line at Serangoon, and in minutes found myself at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands – at way past 10:00 PM.  I know the stores there close at 11:00 PM.

By 10:40 PM, the only piece they had in store was mine.  Happily so.

“LONGCHAMP” perfectly heat-stamped on to the lamskin leather, two handles in cowhide leather, enhanced by two small Russian ears, snap button enclosure also in cowhide leather.

 

 

On the back, the epic brand’s epic equestrian logo heat-stamped on to the lambskin leather.

 

The bag, perfectly slouchy, in the canvass bag bin at Din Tai Fung.

 

At the Orchard MRT Station

 

At the Malaysian Food Street beside Universal Studios Singapore

 

Copyright © 2012 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MunchTime™©.  All rights reserved





Making someone happy

2 11 2011

I can't look at this photo and not think of "Breakfast at Tiffany's"...

ONE OF Brother’s longest-running jokes about me is about how well I was able to save up when I was on assignment in the States for a year and a half, more than half of which we spent sharing the same country code (not the “63”).  Everything in that sentence seems right.  Except when you get to know which “banks” he is referring to – Kenneth Cole, Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Coach, Armani.  You get the picture.

Old habits die hard.  Old habits are hard to break.  But I guess this time, I’m adding a little bit to whatever altruism there is in this world.  I’ve really started to stop thinking of myself and get nice stuff for the people I love.

November 1st officially marked my fourth month here in Singapore.  And I feel so blessed to have had the opportunity to go back home – even for just the weekends on all occasions except the last one – for three times now.  Each of those was more exciting that the one before it.

And each was a chance to get something wonderful to make someone happy.

Coach

 

This is nice packaging.

 

Tiffany and Coach

 

Why so blue? Hehehe...

 

I just love how my trusty, three-year-old Canon IXUS 860IS captured this box.

 

I think it takes special skills to be a Tiffany's associate. I knew I wouldn't be able to recreate the way this ribbon was tied.

 

Cath Kidston

 

I espy another Le Pliage inside.

 

The ribbon is a nice touch.

 

Small leather goods from Louis Vuitton...

 

...and then some.

 

 

Copyright © 2011 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MunchTime™©.  All rights reserved





Something French for Mama

30 03 2011

Le Pliage by Longchamp from the New Collection, S/S 2011

AT THE top of my pasalubong list is a nice bag for my mother.  If I’d fill out a form to describe her, I’d probably tick both “shoe fiend” and “bag addict”.  Not that she is sheer materialistic.  She has actually always been sensible with her stuff.  And when we were growing up, she would indulge herself quite sparingly.

On Orchard Road, there are many names to tempt shoppers.  The more French-sounding, or the more Italian, the more they seem to be expensive and over my budget.  I told Louis, Coco, Salvatore, and Gucci that I would have to wait a few more months before we could get down to business.

But I didn’t also want to settle for the usual Singapore souvenir (think keychains) so I went for sensible luxury.  And I found it with Longchamp.  And since this recent trip, I’ve been saying it just how it is intended in French.  Hahaha!

The Le Pliage handbag by Longchamp has got to be one of the most successful handbag lines worldwide.  It’s made with polyamide fabric, lined on the inside with a protective coating.  The leather trims – the handles, the flap, and the zipper ends – are in cowhide.  To make the purchase more special, I picked from Longchamp’s new collection, debuted on Paragon’s and Ion’s displays just a few days before my arrival.

Meet my mother’s new baby, a beauty inside and out – her embroidered, navy blue, 8¼x8¼x5½ inch Le Pliage by Longchamp!

The lady toting Mama's new handbag has got to be the nicest and most pleasant sales associate I met in Singapore!

 

She's quite pretty too. I think i startled her when she turned and realized I was taking a shot.

 

Longchamp!

 

The bag was actually first put in a nice sleeve before being put in the shopping bag.

 

The sleeve comes with a nice ribbon.

 

The Longchamp has landed!

 

Copyright © 2011 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MunchTime™©.  All rights reserved.