Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas 2016

This year's Christmas was a quiet affair spent among intimate friends and family. We did not do the usual trip abroad to take advantage of my week-long forced holiday (our Singapore office closes during this time every year), instead we're having a staycation while awaiting my brother's family coming from the Philippines to stay with us for the New Year.

Here are some of my favorite photos from the past few days:

prepping up the Christmas tree

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Garden State of Mind

I'm just in the mood for nice songs today. This one's on the top of my list of go-to, feel-good favorites:


And so was the movie, "Garden State".

Have a merry mid-week, everyone! :)

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Sick Day Saturday

What you can do on sick days, not just on a Saturday...


* Read interesting bits of literature and plunge into depths of musings and ponderings. Here is one good link. And one screen capture:
Very Douglas Adams... my kind of thoughts... (screen capture from e-flux)

What makes interesting literature for me is how the words are arranged in a certain way that creates a sense of rhythm. To the sensitive reader this would feel like reading poetry instead of prose, or even actually feel like listening to music. I do not care so much about vocabulary and grammar because these are just mere technicalities. I prefer to read clean and clear, simple passages minus the unnecessary boastfulness of complex vocabulary.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Nintendo Entertainment System Classic Edition

Ever since I saw an article on the internet that there is going to be a new Nintendo Entertainment System in a mini console with HDMI port, I have been salivating over it. I really wanted to get one for myself for Christmas. Even more so, when I have a colleague who actually managed to buy one and brought it to the office. I've been longing to be able to play my favorite Nintendo games again, especially since I have a full week to spend at home during the Christmas holiday, with my brother coming for a visit along with his family. It would be so nice to play the games with my brother again just like when we were kids in the 80's.


The new Nintendo Entertainment System Classic Mini, released 11th November 2016 (image from http://www.nintendo.com)

Imagine my dismay and shock when I found out that Nintendo did not deliver enough stock. And that a lot of scalpers have taken advantage of this limited stock and are now selling them four times (or more) the original price. See angry comments on Amazon.com. This is really absurd, crazy and unreasonable. And very, very cruel on the part of Nintendo.

I just want to remind people out there that you should NOT give in and buy it for more than the original retail price. Nintendo will surely release more stock in the coming days or weeks. You are just encouraging the greedy scammers. It's just not worth it. You can actually just play the games with your regular computer using an emulator. Or if you are a more technical person, you can just get a Raspberry Pi and install the games.

My colleague's RaspberryPi3

I am actually just wanting to buy this product over pure sentiment and nostalgia... but I do not know for how long this nostalgia-induced "wanting" will last. Nintendo, you better act fast!

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Kitvision Splash Waterproof Full HD 1080p Sample Video

While I was searching for items to buy for myself using my AirFrance miles, I came across this waterproof camera on the SkyShop. I have always been on the lookout for cheaper alternatives to expensive underwater cameras and I just had enough miles to be able to get it without paying any cash, and so I quickly searched the Internet for reviews and sample videos. I was quite satisfied with what I found. For more than half the price of GoPro cameras, the Kitvision Splash Waterproof Action Camera produces quite decent underwater videos. Here is a sample I did this morning:



As you can see, the video is quite clear. And it's just about the only feature that I really care about. I can forgo the shaky video results produced when riding bikes or doing other stunts because I am only mostly going to use it to take underwater videos.

The Kitvision Splash Waterproof Camera just out of the box
Another thing is that once you've put it inside the case, you cannot change the settings anymore. If you're looking to buy this waterproof camera, you will have to forgo a lot of its shortcomings. As for me, these are features that I can do away with. Other than using it for underwater videos, I might also consider using it as an alternative to my iPhone on rainy days but I doubt if I would feel like taking pictures or videos at all in the rain. I don't think it takes very decent still shots or selfies.

In conclusion: this waterproof action camera is definitely wanting when it comes to features that you look for in "action cameras", but if your main concern is just taking underwater videos, then this camera is definitely for you.

Thanks for dropping by and have a good weekend! :)

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Birthday at The Shangri-la in Boracay

It's been ten years since I last visited Boracay. There are so many changes. It is now in a sad, over-exploited state. The once beautiful and pristine stretch of White Beach is now mostly littered with trash, overrun by irresponsible tourists, and the waters on the shores are alga-infested. Somebody has to rehabilitate this whole island. I wouldn't recommend visiting it again while it continues to be over-exploited and neglected like this.

Nevertheless, hubby had always been wanting to see the place. And so, I decided to see for myself how Boracay has changed today. And because of the warnings on most web sites about the pollution and overcrowding, I decided to book a resort that has its own private beach areas. As you will see in my video blog, I made the right decision.



Thanks for dropping by and have a good day! :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Poem in October

by Dylan Thomas

  It was my thirtieth year to heaven
     Woke to my hearing from harbour and neighbour wood
        And the mussel pooled and the heron
                Priested shore
           The morning beckon
     With water praying and call of seagull and rook
     And the knock of sailing boats on the webbed wall
           Myself to set foot
                That second
        In the still sleeping town and set forth.

        My birthday began with the water-
     Birds and the birds of the winged trees flying my name
        Above the farms and the white horses
                And I rose
            In a rainy autumn
     And walked abroad in shower of all my days
     High tide and the heron dived when I took the road
            Over the border
                And the gates
        Of the town closed as the town awoke.

        A springful of larks in a rolling
     Cloud and the roadside bushes brimming with whistling
        Blackbirds and the sun of October
                Summery
            On the hill's shoulder,
     Here were fond climates and sweet singers suddenly
     Come in the morning where I wandered and listened
            To the rain wringing
                Wind blow cold
        In the wood faraway under me.

        Pale rain over the dwindling harbour
     And over the sea wet church the size of a snail
        With its horns through mist and the castle
                Brown as owls
             But all the gardens
     Of spring and summer were blooming in the tall tales
     Beyond the border and under the lark full cloud.
             There could I marvel
                My birthday
        Away but the weather turned around.

        It turned away from the blithe country
     And down the other air and the blue altered sky
        Streamed again a wonder of summer
                With apples
             Pears and red currants
     And I saw in the turning so clearly a child's
     Forgotten mornings when he walked with his mother
             Through the parables
                Of sunlight
        And the legends of the green chapels

        And the twice told fields of infancy
     That his tears burned my cheeks and his heart moved in mine.
        These were the woods the river and the sea
                Where a boy
             In the listening
     Summertime of the dead whispered the truth of his joy
     To the trees and the stones and the fish in the tide.
             And the mystery
                Sang alive
        Still in the water and singing birds.

        And there could I marvel my birthday
     Away but the weather turned around. And the true
        Joy of the long dead child sang burning
                In the sun.
             It was my thirtieth
        Year to heaven stood there then in the summer noon
        Though the town below lay leaved with October blood.
             O may my heart's truth
                Still be sung
        On this high hill in a year's turning.

Still my favorite! Happy humpy day! :)