Looking Back and Moving Forward

It’s only been a few weeks since we welcomed the new year with hopes and wishes for a better life. But every time I say “last year,” 2014 feels like many months ago. Nonetheless, looking back at the year that was makes me feel contented and fulfilled. I daresay I achieved what I wanted before the year ended – peace of mind and a clean slate to start 2015 with.

I finally had the chance to catch up with my dear friend Cindy after the holiday break. We talked about 2014 and both agreed that it was the most magastos year ever! Why? We both spent our hard-earned money on our favorite activity – traveling. True enough, last year was exciting and fun-filled because of all the traveling I did with friends and family.

First stop – Banaue Rice Terraces, Sagada, and Baguio

The cold weather, the sights and sounds of Sagada, the simple life of the people up north. I will never forget how breathtaking it was to finally see up close the rice terraces built by our ancestors. A.MA.ZING.

sagada, banaue rice terraces


Second stop – Baler

I have a confession to make – I don’t know how to swim. Hahaha. But I loooove the beach, and it’s obvious naman, I went to Baler twice with my teammates. Proud first time surfer here who got on the board a number of times! Yey!

10850024_10152638839791185_9063300470664403559_n baler, museo de baler, surfing


Third stop – Caramoan Islands

It still surprises me how something this beautiful exists and takes my breath away. Because of the awesomeness of the islands that we visited in Caramoan, I vowed to make sure that I will visit more islands in our country in 2015.



Fourth stop – Penang and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

It was a happy, happy birthday for me in October. I got to explore Georgetown in Penang, Malaysia. Corners and streets and walls with street art, yummy street food, and hospitable people – what more can I ask for in a birthday celebration? Maybe no more stalkers while biking around town. LOL. (Yes, I have yet to write about this travel to Malaysia. Soon. :))

1509733_10152548062376185_7498839504645560535_n penang, georgetown, kuala lumpur, malaysia, travel to penang


In between all the traveling, I also managed to discover my love for two new hobbies – running and mountain climbing. I never imagined that I’d fall in love with these activities. You see, I wasn’t an “outdoorsy” type of person before. I hated getting my hands and feet dirty with mud, I didn’t like running long distances, and I wasn’t a big fan of sleeping in a tent. But all that changed when I tried hiking and when I covered 5k, 8k, 10k, and finally 21k in marathons. At first, it was only for fun, only to veer my attention away from thoughts I don’t like lingering in my mind. Yet I found myself joining more marathons and wanting to climb more mountains. I started investing in mountain climbing gear and subscribing to all these websites where run schedules are posted.

Girl vs. Mountain series – Mt. Romelo, Tarak Ridge, and Mt. Natib

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Eat and Run series – AmCham Run for a Scholar, World Vision Run, Energen Healthy Run Manila Leg, Eco R3Run, and Run United Philippine Marathon 3

energen healthy run manila leg 2014

rupm 3


An important event that capped off the year and made it even more unforgettable was the wedding of one of my college best friends, Irene. I was blinking back tears as she walked down the aisle to the arms of her love. It was a simple yet touching ceremony of their union, and of course I was honored to be her maid of honor.




I’d have to say that 2014 was unlike any other year. I let loose, I became more adventurous, I forgot my fears and embraced challenge. Looking back, I can sum up what I feel in one word: Thankful. I am thankful for the people that I met in one of the trails, on the road while running, or on the plane while on my way to one of my destinations. I am thankful for the changes that taught me that nothing’s really permanent, and you won’t be happy if you stay stuck in one place.  I am thankful for another year, another chance to move forward and do right.




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