Monday, April 13, 2015

The Grand Bazaar, Istanbul



The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul is one place where I got my senses assaulted.  I was so overwhelmed I left empty-handed. 

Jess, if you are reading this, which you should be doing when you wake up today--there is one photo here which shows the necklace I want.




Actually I would be ordering a rug from you too, but since Maya came into the house, I've had to remove all my rugs! Having a dog is such a hassle, and detrimental to interior design. But she is so cute so the rugs remain rolled in the laundry room.



Okay, where is that necklace...


It's simple lang, and many of the bazaar jewellers here have copied it. Or maybe they just buy their stash from there and re-sell here.


The only thing I ever bought from the Grand Bazaar, almost 10 years ago, were turkish outfits for the girls who were 2 and 3 years old then. They looked so cute in those outfits and were able to wear it to many costume parties.

I didn't find any turkish outfit shop this time.








Since I wasn't on the look out to buy anything,  I also avoided chatting with the shopkeepers. I'm such a sucker for home decor that I would've ended up buying a light fixture if I started a conversation. Then it will just end up in storage.




Wait, I don't see the necklace is any of these pictures.




Bahala ka na, I trust your good taste! Just buy me something... (but not an evil-eye pendant k?)



Have fun, remember to FOCUS, and don't get overwhelmed!


I'll see if I can google you some other pegs.


This is the guy who showed us around when we were there.
































































Thursday, April 2, 2015

Up North in Batanes




I'm about to take a trip to another beautiful part of our country with the same cast of characters and I still haven't finished my Batanes posts.  So here is one last one--only because these photos are so gorgeous.


and so are we (hee hee)


Batanes has a variety of rolling hills, steep cliffs, and dramatic shorelines. Now and then, they are punctuated by a rustic abandoned structure or  makeshift shed like this one below.

local men playing cards




It would be hard to take a bad picture in Batanes. All these pictures are just snapped by a regular point-and-shoot camera and my phone.


Batanes is a photographer's paradise.


For city kids who are usually staring into a computer screen or looking down at some gadget, this is also paradise.



Okay, I spoke too soon. When you are overwhelmed with your surroundings, a selfie is excusable.


When people see these pictures, they can't believe landscapes like these exists in the Philippines.  


Mind you, this lying down business in not prompted.

It seems to be a natural reaction to beautiful wide open space, clear skies and clean air. Our country has many of these places (just need to discover them), but I think Batanes is in a class of its own



Our guide told us that Batanes was also very popular with couples who like taking engagement photos. The guy above was in a light-colored linen suit and they were taking turns riding the bike, while their guide/photographer took their photos.

(Btw, our guide also provides that service--he can take you around, and document your trip with his own camera too)


The photos will look like they went to some romantic far away place when actually they are only up north in Batanes. But okay, Batanes is still a bit remote.



I hope the people in charge of Batanes preserve the beauty of the province and not let it get run down by commercialism.




From my last visit twenty years ago, more areas of the island are accessible by vehicle, like this spot that looks so much like Hawaii.


Go visit Batanes while you can. It's not cheap, but it's totally worth the trip.


Meanwhile, we're off on another adventure...

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