Food, Places

Food in Bloom


Good Taste is the default choice for the very late lunch. Not that anyone would resent that. When it comes to eating out with a large group, Good Taste is really the first thing that comes to mind. And I’m happy because I missed their food! Oh, and they have a new branch now in Legarda, that’s where we ate. (No food porn here, it seems that nobody in this group is used to taking photos before eating.)

After the eats, we parted in groups, agreed to see the Amungan at 6:30 pm. Amungan is a play staged annually by Pagta, an organization based in UP Baguio which our block or mostly members of our block PIC is a member of. Back in college, this event would keep us busy for a good 3 months or so.

I was with the gypsy/non-Baguio residents group (with Dona, Lian and Mara) because we have nowhere to go. Bangs (who adopted Dona and Lian) had a class and left even without having lunch. We didn’t want to just barge in to her house and leave our things, especially it’s only her Dad who’s home. We left our stuff in SM instead, then accompanied Mara to Porta Vaga for her hair cut. Went back to SM and had coffee before heading off to CAP Building just across the street for the Amungan.

I couldn’t understand some parts of the play because they used mixed Cordi dialects so I just kept myself entertained by watching out for this actor everytime he comes out. This bebeboi is cute, isn’t he? lol cougar tendencies!

After the show, we amazed the other older alumni of our presence (yeah yeah our batch is still solid as a rock after all those years, hehe). We didn’t stay long after the show, just snapped some photos and went off. The 4 of us went back to SM for our things, leaving the others to decide where we’re having dinner. After some time, they finally vouched for Pizza Volante, the new one located near Wright Park.

Again, no food porn here. But I ordered the salad with roast chicken and blue cheese dressing, and everyone mocked me for that. What is a couple of days stuffing myself with highland goods. Everyone else had pancakes, except Bangs who had a rice meal. Them people just love carbs so much. Word, haha!

I had to do away with my usual choices when eating in this restaurant, which is either pasta, pancake, or beer, chos. Despite all those horrid stories they had to tell me about people they knew who ate healthy but eventually got sick. YOLO, blah blah. I didn’t really mind because I enjoyed my salad.

We stayed in the restaurant for a while, waited for some people, waited for them to finish eating. Then this band started performing. Perhaps due to lack of things we could talk about, we started focusing on them. We asked for them to play Skinny Love which Joel and Lian had been LSS-ing since lunch. We even gave them a P20 tip (hehe) but they never played any of our requests. It’s alright, they did a very good cover of Angus and Julia Stone’s Big Jet Plane anyway. They played a lot of Coldplay, which I didn’t think fit because it sad music + Baguio weather isn’t a good combination.

Dona started dozing off in the table so we had to leave, and took some time before we decide to just buy some drinks and go to Jom’s place.

Session In Bloom

Another good thing about being in Baguio this time of the year, we got to catch the last day of Session in Bloom, usually the last day of Panagbenga Festival, too. I’m not a fan of Panagbenga, because Baguio during these days is filled with tourists. And by filled, I mean the city becomes too crowded and dirty and hot. But hey, this was first time I experienced Session in Bloom as a tourist!

Last week, while inquiring about the weather in Baguio, I was trying to annoy Bangs by saying I’m gonna do all touristy stuff once I get there. I thought maybe this time, I’m gonna get myself buy something for myself (haha). Because that was something I never got to do when I was a student. Session in Bloom used to just mean shawarma and footlong hotdogs and basura, lots of basura to me. Good thing this year, they have stricter waste disposal measures. The shops don’t even use plastic bags for purchases. Session Road was free trash.

I hoarded hats. This isn’t exactly what I had in mind. I just wanted to buy bonnets and beanies and scarves, but when I saw the lovely (and cheaper, compared to the ones sold in the malls) hats, I impulse-purchased. I wish my friends had been harsher and just told me those hats didn’t look good on me so I didn’t take them. But they were supportive because I kept telling I’m gonna be needing them since I will stop colouring my hair and start wearing hats instead. I even bought a hat for the La Union trip. But anyway, it’s all done. I thought I could just use the hats to decorate my room, because let’s face it, I’m not really gonna wear them, well maybe if I go to the beach or something. And maybe I’ll give a couple to my mom.

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So after the hat and and trying of wigs, the crowd is starting to grow so we turned around and walk up to La Azotea in upper Session. Bangs suggested we check out Azotea Greens Resto & Cafe which is growing popular in the blogosphere. I used to just walk past this restaurant when going to Oh My Gulay, when it’s still located in the second floor of the building. It’s now in the basement where Marian Platz used to be.

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We chose the most laid back area in the restaurant. I would’ve opted for the couch but everyone else ran to that area in the other corner, a Japanese-style diner.

All of us are first-timers so we just relied on what Bangs’ had read and had been told by friends. Also, thanks to this really friendly waitress who carefully described every meal we wanted to order, and suggested items we should try. And so began the story of four girls ordering too much food. Mind you it has only been a couple of hours since we had breakfast (rice meal) at Bangs’.

We ordered Azotea Greens Salad, but the waitress must’ve forgotten to write it down with our orders or they just thought we didn’t really mean to order that much, lol. Upon learning that they haven’t prepared the salad yet, we requested for Cream Puff instead.

When in Baguio, you must eat at Azotea Greens. Really good food! You can read my friend Bangs’ review about the restaurant here.

Food, Places

Stranded in Baguio, But No Lonely Nights

When we were in SM, I brought Diana and Emman to the souvenir shops located at the outer part of the ground floor. While in Sagada Weaving, the two came with a crazy idea of still pursuing our Sagada trip. The plan: they’ll get absent from work for a day so we could spend a day in Sagada. They really, really wanna do it. As for myself, I’ve already let go of the Sagada trip but then if they want to, I’ll have to accompany them. On the other hand, Shyne, Rein and Ren planned to go home by noon time because they’re already short of budget.

The next day, we woke up early. Well, I woke up at around 5:30am but immediately went back to bed (it’s cold!). Besides, with the kind of weather, I was pretty sure there were no buses going up yet. It was past 7 when Emman, Diana and I went out, but we left our things at the Inn because we weren’t really expecting much.

Indeed, it was another disappointment, but then I’ve completely moved on by that time. What we did next was go to the market and Maharlika Complex so they can buy pasalubong. We went back to the Inn and then checked out altogether at past noon.

Although, the day didn’t start well, something made up for it. Finally, Oh My Gulay has opened! We all loved it there so we took tons of photos. It’s nice that there was an ongoing exhibit by all-female artists at VOCAS.

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After the late lunch, we went back to the market for the other 3 to buy pasalubong. We separated ways when the cab driver won’t allow 6 passengers in his cab. Diana, Emman and I went to my sorority sister Jeaneil’s house (the APO house and they call it the mansion :p) where we left our things since Diana and Emman planned to leave later that night.

In the evening, Jeaneil brought us to watch her friends’ gig at Marien Platz in La Azotea, Session Road. There were lots of new bars sprouted around the city, despite the fact that there were already plenty of bahay-inumans when I was living in Baguio. It kind of made me want to look for a job and stay there. :p Jeaneil’s friend’s band was called Rey’s Anatomy, if I’m not mistaken. There were 2 or 3 other performers that night. We were met up at the bar by a fraternity brother and his friend.

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Shortly after midnight, we went back to Jeaneil’s, this time with Kuya Rex who obviously wants to continue drinking. I did open a bottle of Kwatro Kantos I found at ‘the mansion’ and passed a shot around. We had to stop after one round though because my friends needed to leave already. It’s all for the laughs now, but I will never forget that desperate attempt of this certain person to make my friends stay for few more hours, haha! Good times indeed!

After dropping the 2 at the terminal, I found myself at El Costa Bar, the bar just beside Victory Liner, drinking with Jeaneil and Kuya Rex. We drank until 5am. I could say that night was the most epic night of this Baguio vacation, because 1. I got drunk with my old pals, so drunk I forgot where my bag was, we had to walk here and there to find it when it was only at ‘the mansion’; 2. while eating mami at Engineer’s Hill talipapa, we did not have enough money to pay for the food so we asked the personnel if we could just pay it later since they knew Jeaneil 3. of that short action star stint I had to do when we cannot open ‘the mansion’s’ front door, I kicked it open.

I went to sleep at 6 AM but I was already awake before noon. I chose to just laze around since it was still in the afternoon when I’m seeing Bangs. She probably hated it, but I chose to meet her up at SM, where I bought books (lots of ’em) from Booksale. It’s because they’ve got a great selection and way cheaper prices compared to their Metro Manila branches. It was supposed to be a get-together with my blockmates since I rarely go up but Bangs is the only one who made it. We went drinking at Cottage Gi’s.

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Oh wait, I have a side story! You know how I don’t really believe in ‘destiny’ and that sort of thing, but I think this thing happened to me when I almost bumped with someone I least expected to see in the city. This will probably make you think I’m a weirdo but I don’t want to forget about this moment so I’ll say it anyway. So I’ve been crushing on this certain person I’ve only seen in photographs. (Please try not to judge me.) But I probably have heard his voice over the radio (clue!), when I was still in Baguio. We almost bumped each other at the door. Had I seen his face before that, I’d probably bumped into him intentionally, haha! So there he was, hanging out in the same restaurant/bar with his friends. At that moment, I wanted to believe in destiny, unfortunately, nothing really happened aside from that door incident. There was just a split-second eye contact when he glanced at our table and met my eyes, because naturally, I was looking… at him when he went 3 o’clock from me while he was talking with someone over the phone. If I was a Westerner, I’d probably went over to him and made moves and left my number whatsoever. But I’m not, and I probably believe in destiny subconsciously. :p

So after a couple of drinks, we decided to look for another place to hang out. Of course, we went to the first bar we saw down SM — Iris Bar and Restaurant (formerly Cafe Boss) located in Upper Session Road. Then Jeaneil went over and joined me because Bangs can’t stay that long. (A day later in Manila, I learned that a friend from UP Baguio, Ewik was in Ayuyang at that same time, when I was looking for someone to talk to. Geez, why didn’t I think of Ayuyang, really.)

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From Iris, we went to Legarda. I was wearing slippers and I know most of the bars in there don’t allow that but I managed to sneak in at 18BC, giving me the bragging rights over our frat brod Castel who apparently wasn’t allowed inside the same bar that weekend. Must be the coat I was wearing, or the legs logs. :p Some guys at the bar told me I looked like Nanette Medved. Thank you, beer googles. :p

By midnight, I left Baguio with a heavy heart. Although I’ve got lots of happy memories to get me by until the next time I go home. For all these epic experiences, I love you more Baguio.


*Photos from me and my companions