Food, Friends, and Finish Lines

I’ve been out of the loop for quite some time, and I just realized on my way back home this afternoon how much I’ve missed writing. I’ve been quite busy with a lot of stuff – work of course, a week-long leave to travel and meet up with friends for my birthday last month, and *drum roll please* Hay Day. LOL. Seriously. Hay Day has been very helpful in making me feel relaxed after 12-hour shifts at work.

When I found out that I had to refresh my blog’s connection to Facebook, it finally hit me – it’s been ages since I last logged in on WordPress and posted something. And because I want to veer away from negativity (hey it’s Christmas in like three weeks), I’d like to share my top three stress busters despite my tight schedule, the daily strain from commuting and the horrible traffic, the unavoidable fact of life that we need to deal with obnoxious people, and the recent changes at work.

1. FOOD, FOOD, FOOD!

My close friends know that I looooooove to eat. I take the time to check out highly recommended or popular restaurants (but I have yet to convince myself to line up for a bowl of ramen in Ippudo) and see (or rather taste) for myself if they’re just all hype or if talagang pop na pop. My latest discoveries and favorites:

frankie's buffalo wings, frankies chicken wings
Frankie’s Buffalo Wings!! I know I have previously talked about this, so by now you should know how much I love their wings. My officemates and I have a bi-weekly pact to visit our favorite chicken wings place and get our fill of their Classic flavored buffalo wings plus a few beer bottles.
tim ho wan, baked pork buns
Tim Ho Wan, finally we meet! This Michelin 1-star restaurant that started off as a hole-in-the-wall eatery in Hongkong has established a name here in Manila and everyday, there’s a long queue of people waiting to get their hands on the famous baked pork buns. The other day we got lucky – my officemate and I fell in line for just about five minutes and were seated agad. I ate five pork buns! At least generous ako and I shared one piece. Never ever leave Tim Ho Wan without ordering their Mango Pomelo Sago for dessert.
the burger project, the brgr project, maginhawa street burger project
A recent discovery, like this afternoon lang. Haha! BRGR: The Burger Project in Maginhawa Street. Foodies are well aware how this street has turned into a food haven, and The Burger Project has made a name for itself by allowing diners to create and name their own burgers. My verdict – I love my BURGER PATTY! Syempre, love your own. 🙂

 

2. FRIENDS!

I am just thankful for my friends, especially those I’ve known for a long time, for being my constant source of happiness and strength. One group of friends that I will forever cherish would be my college friends. We’ve been through a lot, and when I say a lot kasama na dun ang tampuhan, months of not seeing each other, and the geographic issues (as in LDF – Long Distance Friendship because two of them are abroad for work and studies), but we’re still as close as ever. I had a great time with them during my birthday dinner, and the dinner was made even more fun because my friend who’s studying in Japan happened to be in Manila for a convention, kaya we were almost complete. We had a laughter-filled night full of bullying. Yes, friends talaga kami pero that’s how we show our love and affection for each other. And one event that we’re all excited about – my college best friend’s wedding this December! I’m the maid of horror honor!

With my college best friends (and their boyfriends) enjoying a night out in Eastwood.
With my college best friends (and their boyfriends) enjoying a night out in Eastwood.
You are missed, Nebee!
You are missed, Nebee!
With the student in Japan and the bride!
With the student in Japan and the bride!
Maid of honor duties! Can't wait to see you walk down the aisle, Ai!
Maid of honor duties! Can’t wait to see you walk down the aisle, Ai!

 

3. FINISH LINES!

In life, there are literal and figurative finish lines. I’m glad to have finally reached a figurative finish line by cutting off ties with someone for good.

Another finish line that I reached is one that I wouldn’t mind seeing again. On October 5, I had my first 21k run after a series of 3k, 5k, and 10k marathons in the past few months.  I joined the Alaxan FR 21k division of the Run United Philippine Marathon 3 in SM Mall of Asia, together with thousands of runners and enthusiasts. The race was organized by RunRio, and like most of their marathons, it was fun, orderly, and well-managed. I loved how hands-on Coach Rio was during the event and how he encouraged the runners (myself included) to run the last few meters and dash to the finish line.

It was probably one of the most fulfilling (and tiring) achievements that I’ve had this year. After covering about 15kms and two hours into the race, I was starting to feel my legs tremble, so I had to alternate jogging – walking – jogging – sprinting – walking. It was exhausting, and I was so close to giving up but kept going and thinking of that coveted medal. After a little over three and a half hours and the finish line was a few steps from me, I badly wanted to tear up and give a high five to everyone as one of the usherettes handed me my first ever half-marathon medal. It was truly an unforgettable experience, something I’d like to do again really soon.

rupm 3, run united philippine marathon, runrio
Yay! Pawis at uhaw at pagod at haggard pero it was all worth it!
That Finisher Shirt!
That Finisher Shirt!
This medal deserves a spot next to my medals from college.
This medal deserves a spot next to my medals from college.
My running buddies na hindi makatawid ng maayos after the run!
My running buddies na hindi makatawid ng maayos after the run!
We were all super hungry but didn't have enough energy left to explore the restos in MOA. We ended up having lunch at Savory. Not complaining though, their chicken was still as tasty and juicy as I remember from the last time I ate there.
We were all super hungry but didn’t have enough energy left to explore the restos in MOA. We ended up having lunch at Savory. Not complaining though, their chicken was still as tasty and juicy as I remember from the last time I ate there.

 

Whenever I feel like life’s so unfair, or when I start spiraling down into that abyss of despair when things don’t go my way, I help myself get back on track by enumerating what makes me cheery and excited about the future. I know my friends and officemates have witnessed my sungit moments and stressed-ako-walang-kakausap-sakin days, but trust me, those moments will not last long. I always make sure that my thoughts and emotions are anchored onto something – like these three Fs – food, friends, and finish lines, and they’re enough to bring that smile back on my face. Have a fruitful weekend ahead!

 

Food, food, food directory:

Frankie’s New York Buffalo Wings
G/F City Golf Plaza, Doña Julia Vargas Ave. Ugong, Pasig
(02) 687-1250

Tim Ho Wan
UG/F SM Megamall, Fashion Hall, Julia Vargas Ave cor EDSA, Wack Wack, Mandaluyong

BRGR: The Burger Project
122 Maginhawa St. Teacher’s Village – East, Quezon City
(02) 351-7474

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