Empty Cabinets, Uncovered Bed and the Remnants of My Corner

Empty Cabinets, Uncovered Bed and the Remnants of My Corner

There comes a point in our lives when we have to leave places that have become our comfort zones. Graduating from college entails the inevitable process of moving out of the place that has been my home for the past five years. It took me a bit longer to move out than expected. There were too many things (clutter) to transfer and I just finished procuring the first set of furniture for the place I’m moving into. But perhaps a part of me just wanted to hang on for a bit longer.

Earlier today, I peeped out the window from S207 and gazed at how beautiful the sunrise was; how the rays extended and brightened the room. That would probably be the last time I’d get to do that. I did not take a photo just to keep the image in my mind. 🙂

After my review classes, I rushed back to the dorm to finish packing the things I still had in the dorm. As I was packing I realized that some of the post-its on my cork board have been there for more than a year. There were even posts from my former roommates (Noreen, Gem and Joey). I segregated things for the last time and pushed myself to let go of unnecessary clutter.

I wanted to bequeath some of my things to some people who have made my dorm life memorable. 😉 But due to the rush packing I did these past few days, I only managed to give out three items earlier today. I have some stuff in the condo that I intended to give to other DMC members and foster siblings. It was hard to let go of the things that I gave because they had some sentimental value. But giving away that box from Paris, that Panda nanoblock toy and the “No One Messes with the Family” ARSA lanyard was a part of the process of moving on. To whoever got these items, please take care of them. :>

As I leave the room, I took a last look and took a snapshot of my little corner in UDS 207. I would miss being woken up by the sunlight. I would miss hearing recurring alarms from roommates’ alarm clocks and phones. I would miss seeing familiar places along the hallways. I would miss the random tambay session at the lobby. I would miss the late night walks and milk tea time in Katipunan. I would miss the place I have called my home.

But my corner now is empty — just like how it was when I moved in during my sophomore year. What’s left are empty cabinets, uncovered beds and I take with me all the memories, experiences, “life lessons,” and friendships that were built within the premises for these residence halls.

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8. Toilet: The Musical #ShitHappens

1. 1779778_10201504431799626_1500508962_nFeb. 20, 2014, Thursday — Every school year, I make sure I get to watch at least one Blue Repertory show: from Rock ‘n’ Rule, to Breakups and Breakdowns and Stages of Love and to watching Stages of Love twice. For my last semester as an undergraduate student, I got to watch Blue Rep’s Toilet: The Musical. It is an original play by Blue Rep with music by Ejay Yatco.

Enzo, Kevin, Jigs, Ange and I were supposed to catch the Feb 12 show to watch Carlos Quiapo. But due to the bomb scare in the Ateneo, we had to reschedule. The soundtrack (click here to listen in SoundCloud) has been playing on loop in my iTunes since yesterday.

Aside from a good soundtrack, the play had dynamic characters. I would say that I am a Tiffany. :’) To those who have seen the show, #FIYOLO! But to spare others from spoilers, I shall speak/write no more.

P.S. Jose Mari Chan was part of the audience. His son is part of the play. 🙂

 

7. Starting Over Again

How can I unlove you?

My love is greater than your failures.

If you insist, how can I resist?

Feb. 19, 2014, Wednesday —- (spoiler alert) Filipino movies are known to be cheesy and corny. But from time to time I allow myself to indulge and give in to my jologs side (and I sort of drag friends along, too). France, Dale and I watched Starting Over Again in SM Marikina. As expected, the movie had cheesy quotable quotes such as the ones above. But thinking about it, these lines seemed to stand out because the viewers are able to relate. On another note, there is something predictable about Filipino movies. You can rely that the ending is predominantly, unless it is an Indie movie. But for Starting Over Again, I like how the ending was realistic and not the happy ending that people expect.

P.S. Let us not kill the Philippine cinema. Let’s catch a Filipino movie once in a while 🙂

P.P.S. Hi, Dale! If you are reading this, I hope you got over the ending already! 😉

6. Longest Day (since that paper for Fr. David’s Class)

6. Longest Day (since that paper for Fr. David's Class)

Feb. 18, 2014, Tuesday — I had to check my 2013 planner to verify whether or not I have broken my record for staying up to finish a paper for a class. I stayed up for 27 hours to finish the 15-page paper for Fr. David’s class last year. Apparently I did break the record by an hour last Tuesday. I was awake for 28 hours because I wanted to finish my project before I go to sleep. (I learned my lesson last time when we almost failed project on time because my roommate and I failed to wake up to our alarms.) The thing is I was already done with all the computations the day before. I even started writing the paper Tuesday afternoon. But it must have been that OC part of me that caused me to stay up so late to produce the project report about the Microwave Link Design. So you might be wondering why I was happy despite having stayed up so late.

Here’s the thing. My room for the past four years has windows facing the east. But I rarely wake up early to witness the sunrise. But on the longest day on the last week of regular classes, I was able to see the sunrise 🙂 The photo was taken on Wednesday, but for me it was still Tuesday since I haven’t slept.

P.S. I slept in the afternoon. When I woke up to submit my project, I felt terrible. Thanks to my roommate, Angela, for volunteering to submit my project.

P.P.S. Please do not do this. I am not encouraging people to neglect sleep. I felt nauseous after.

5. With Graduating ECE Scholars

5. With Graduating ECE Scholars

Holding our empty AASA piggy banks after the Graduating Scholars Meeting with the Office of Admission and Aid. Soon we will be returning these piggy banks with an amount that could help other students to have the opportunity to study in the Ateneo. ❤ I am forever grateful for the gift of education our benefactors gave us 🙂

Ramblings, Scramblings and the thought of Happiness

It is always at the start of the year when the feeling of uncertainty is heightened. At the same time, a sense of hope overwhelms us thinking about the possibilities that could occur. We are all pumped up to make the world a better place. We start listing things that we want to do with our lives and with these lists we create a mold that would perfectly shape a version (insert age here) of ourselves.

I am heeding a friend’s advice for this year. Through that number game on Twitter, a friend told me to “find happiness in being ordinary.” The thought has been lingering in my mind ever since. A lot of us want fame and fortune that we forget how nice it is to be ordinary. We could wallow in a space where we could go unnoticed, out of sight from the scrutiny of other people. But I guess that was not my friend meant. I wanted to ask my friend what he meant exactly. It is possible that I could be over analyzing things. But then again, there is no harm in provoking the mind to think some more. I guess being ordinary is getting rid of that spotlight. It is a matter of freeing one’s self from the selfishness that’s been nesting on the inside. It is acknowledging that the world does not revolve me and being okay with it.

But for me it must not stop in finding happiness in being ordinary. I must also learn to find happiness in things that are ordinary. There are things that go unnoticed if we don’t take a break from all the hustle and bustle. One of the things I learned to appreciate is the bliss of silence. Don’t get me wrong. I like to talk, I like to listen to music. But the silence allows me to think (about life and all its conundrums or about solutions for a bug in the code I am working on.) Another thing I have been doing more often is gazing at the moon and stars. We were on our way to church and I was in the back seat of the car. I stuck my head out the window and saw that the night sky was clear and stars glittered. To my amazement, I just blurted: “Wow!” (If my memory serves my right, my mom and sister were a little bit confused. Hahaha!) To a person whose sky is polluted by light, a clear sky with stars shining is a sight to behold. One thing I miss though is seeing the sunrise. I want to be a morning person but I’m failing miserably in trying to become one.

The talk about ordinary things reminds me  a Bosconian teaching — that we must also do ordinary things extraordinarily well.  In the process of finding happiness this year, I hope that we all go through what life has to offer. No rewinds, no fast forwards. No pause nor stop. We might find happiness in being ordinary in the ordinary. Let’s find happiness in being ordinary and in the ordinary but let’s do ordinary things extraordinarily well.

Cheers to chasing happiness and dreams this year!

The view from my dorm room’s window as I the sun rises. ❤

P.S.

I came across this 30-Day Challenge called Zero to Hero. The first post should be an introduction about me but in line of being hopeful I ended up writing an introduction to a facet of the person who I want to be. Also, if you are interested in keeping a blog the Zero to Hero is a good way to get you started 🙂

Aichi’s Adventures (and Misadventures) 2013

Inspired by the short video that Krystal made for our Binondo Trip, I wanted to come up with a simple montage of the moments and the people that made 2013 a great year. 😀 Pardon me for the my lack of skill in video and audio editing. I tried to make this in just an hour or two (as part of taking my mind of the MATLAB code I am working on). I also told myself not to post this unless I have a substantial progress for the MATLAB program I was working on.

How about you? How was your 2013?

Disclaimer: If there are events that do not appear in the montage, I may not have the pics on my laptop or the “2013” folder I screened.

The video features the following (in order):

  • New year pics with family
  • Pig out session with Mico and Verlyn
  • Reunion with cousins, Janelle and Ms. Dumaguete (Kaye)
  • World of Fun and lunch with HS friends (Jboy, Lord Louis, Greg, Geo and Benjamin)
  • TEDxADMU with Janiz
  • First Binondo trip with Coleen, Jun, Steve, Romell and Jan
  • Life of Pi movie night in Eastwood with Angela
  • A random shot of me while Sir TJ was discussing about Optics (c/o Carlo)
  • ARSAFEST 2013 with Janiz, Angela and Khalid
  • Golden Times at Shangri-La with Angela
  • DMC Valentines event
  • Theology 151 group project with Angela, Pat, Anika and Lucy
  • Random KFC moment with Benjz and Enzo (I think Angela was the one who took the photo.)
  • Batangas outing with ARSA Batchmates (a.k.a the weekend I decided to somehow give up on TCOM 122 and have a YOLO moment instead)
  • Blue Rose 2013 (Oh hello, China boy!)
  • First day of work in PLDT with Jess and Maeka
  • MVP Olympics Opening
  • Go Green in the City (GGitC) Philippines
  • Birthday treat for Ma’am Reese
  • PLDT Summer Camp Team Building at Camp Explore
  • Close up Summer Solstice with Angela and Jordz
  • Dinner date with Coleen, Dea and Larz
  • Adventures in NLEX with PLDT Student Campers
  • France’s birthday “surprise” (He surprised us with doughnuts.)
  • GGitC – East Asia and Room 804 moments in Jakarta
  • Food trip with Angela, Nicko and Enzo at Ramen Oh
  • Birthday surprise for Angela
  • PLDT Summer Camp Graduation
  • Summer in Dumaguete which includes trips to the beach with family, random moments with the sisters, food trip with family and friends, pig out session with Mico and Verlyn and KTV with Adrian and Mommy A
  • ARSA OrSem 2013: Unleashed
  • Paris adventures during the Schneider Electrics’s GGitC Global Challenge
  • Birthday dinner with Angela in Eastwood
  • Baguio Weekend with Boat 2
  • ADHOC with France, Jojee and Luigi
  • Two-week internship in Nara Institute of Science and Technology in Japan
  •  Long overdue meet up with childhood friend Kasoy a.k.a Humba
  • Book sale adventure at BGC
  • Dinner in Serendra and trip to Resorts World with mom
  • Random meet up with Aids in SM Aura
  • Late night with ARSA Chorale playing Love Bird :))
  • My Thai, Rue Bourbon Catching fire @ Eastwood with Nath, Anna, Likha and Mykee
  • The Soprano 2 girls with Diana and Patricia
  • Blue Harmonies 2013 with ARSA Chorale ❤
  • Frozen and Christmas vibes in Gateway with Kurt, Kuya Francis, Jojee, Sarah H., Krystal and Aliza
  • Star gazing while Geminids were visible
  • ECE ’14 Christmas Dinner
  • High school mini reunion
  • Christmas 2013 with family in Dumaguete ❤

It was a great ride, 2013!

Years are made up of moments that become memories that would last a life time. Though moments are fleeting and time may slip from our hands, we try to remember and cling to those moments. They need not necessarily be as extravagant as travelling around the world or going on YOLO adventures . They might be mundane moments spent in silence that go unnoticed by others. It is however good to look back at these certain points of what has elapsed – to try fit in a timeline what has been. I believe that it is in looking back that we may learn (even if our memories are imperfect.) Please bear with me as I dissect my 2013 experiences.

THE PLACES

Some may say that we dream to travel to rid ourselves of the permanence or mundane living. But I have always sought out to travel because I see it as an opportunity to meet people, learn about different cultures, marvel at

the beauty that the world has to offer and take home those lessons.  In 2013, God has taken me to places but has always led me back home.

  • Paris, France for the Go Green in the City 2013 Global Challenge (with stopovers in Guangzhou and Amsterdam)
  • Jakarta, Indonesia for the Go Green in the City 2013 – East Asia (with stopover in Singapore)
  • Nara, Kyoto and Osaka, Japan for the 2-week internship at Nara Institute of Science and Technology
  • Cabiao, Neuva Ecija, Philippines for the Ignatian Build organized by  Gawad Kalinga – Ateneo
  • Batangas, Philippines for the ARSA Batch 2013 outing
  • Pampanga, Philippines for the PLDT Student Camp Tour
  • Baguio City, Philippines for a weekend with friends (Boat 2) which became a food trip
  • Dumaguete, Philippines for a time well spent with friends and family 🙂

THE EVENTS (The firsts, the reunions and YOLO adventures)

  • My first time to see a shooting star! It happened while I was walking with DMC friends to Manila Observatory. It was magical! And yes, I made a wish. 🙂
  • Adventures with my roomie, Angela — Spring Film Festival @ Shangri-La, Close-up Summer Solstice (Thanks to Jordz David for the tickets!), Birthday Celebrations, movie nights (Life of Pi, Bakit Di Ka Crush ng Crush Mo, Tuhog, etc.)
  • Hotel Mulia Room 804 with the GGitC – East Asia participants :> (What happens in Jakarta, stays in Jakarta!)
  • Got lost in Paris! (with Enzo, Mita, Adam, Ujjwala, Aybuke, Abhishek, Sindhu, Surhendar)
  • HS mini reunion in C&L Hotel (“after party” in Hayahay)
  • Catching up with the A Team over KTV, Lunch and cups of coffee
  • Observing the passing of time just sitting outside Starbucks in SM Aura
  • ARSA Chorale practices and that Blue Harmonies related performances.
  • Random Binondo trip with DMC friends
  • Hours of waiting in the airport..Twice in Mactan Airport and NAIA Terminal 2 (Oh hi, France Tan!)
  • Painful and sad arguments 😦 (I’m sorry)

THE PEOPLE

I think that it is the people who we are with who make the event or trip memorable. In 2013, I was blessed to have the company of friends. I also got to meet a lot of people during the trips. And I would like to take this opportunity to thank the people who made 2013 complete.

THE LESSONS

While catching up with an old friend over a cup of tea, we came to talk about how we have moved on in some ways but remained friends. That conversation made me realize that relationships indeed can be fragile IF you let it be and the passing of time would continually test these relationships. Bottom line: Fight for people who are worth keeping in your lives.

2013 has strengthened my notions about dreams. First, We should dream BIG so that if we fall short of that BIG dream, it will still be a little bigger than just a dream. Second, The only way to turn dreams into a reality is to do something about it.

We also need to learn to have a disposition that is grateful for each moment is a gift, that is hopeful, and a disposition that is open for all the possibilities that God can do with our lives. Prayers are heard and dreams do come true.

It was a great ride, 2013!

Last Day @ Ito-Lab, NAIST

Leaving is never easy. It comes with the burden of saying farewell and not knowing when you will be able to meet again. I spent two weeks here in Japan as an intern in the Foundations of Software Laboratory under the Graduate School of Information Science (IS). Professor Minoru Ito and Assoc. Prof. Naoki Shibata were my mentors.

I was working on a traffic simulation project. I started out clueless about Simulation of Urban Mobility (SUMO). One of the students, Jiaxing Xu helped me out with my project. I was able to present my progress during last Thursday. All IS interns also presented about what they did in the laboratory. Prior to my presentation I was able to take photos with the other students in the laboratory. From left to right:  Ojetunde Babatunde, Alyssa Vintola (Me!), Prof. Ito, Tomoyuki Ueda & Takuya Tominaga.

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These were the people I interacted with during my internship at the laboratory. It was nice to meet these senpai. I will never forget our late dinners in shokudo (university cafeteria), the time I surprised Ueda-senpai and asked him to explain his research in English, the time they taught me how to order small serving of rice at the cafeteria, how to say “See you tomorrow!” and other simple Japanese phrases. Although my stay was very brief, I really enjoyed it. 🙂

Yesterday was my last official laboratory day in Ito-Lab at Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST). Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to take a photo together with Xu-senpai and Prof. Shibata. They were not around. But I was able to take another photo with Prof. Ito. (The pics are not with me yet. I will update this post as soon as I get them.) Also, I got to take pictures with the two “TOMs” I got confused with —- TOMoyuki and TOMinaga : >

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Before leaving the laboratory, the two of them gave me souvenirs and gifts as a farewell treat :”>

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I was indeed an honor to be part of the Foundations of Software Laboratory even for a while. :> Hope to see you all soon in the future! But for now, I say farewell to my spot in the laboratory…

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Along the River Seine

After all the hard work we put into our presentations, Schneider Electric took us to Paris for dinner. Michel Orlhac, SE’s VP for Marketing, acted as our tour guide as we drove along the Champs-Élysées. We were along the Champs-Élysées when I caught my first glimpse of the Eiffel Tower.  We also passed by the Arc de Triomphe. But what took my breath away was the sight of the Eiffel Tower as we drove by. Someday, I will be back to go to the top of the Eiffel Tower. But for now, it shall have to wait.

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Once we got to the docks the riverboat was not there yet. We took the time to get to know more about the other participants and the people from Schneider Electric. We could not mask the excitement that we have while we marvel at the scenic  view.

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The riverboat finally arrived and we found ourselves aboard Le bateau-mouche Capitaine Fracasse. We wined and dined while we cruised along River Seine. The sun sets really late in Paris but when sun did set and the moonlight shone, Paris was simply a breathtaking sight to behold.

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We passed by Eiffel Tower, Le Louvre, Notre Dame and many more interesting architectural structures. But perhaps one interesting thing that I noticed were the young Parisians who were sitting by the river, holding a bottle of beer, enjoying chatting with friends and just having a good time. It must be good to be young and feel young in Paris. One thing I wish I could do is just blend in and get lost at the heart of Paris. But nevertheless, I feel blessed to have been given the chance to cruise along the Seine.

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Throwback Thursday: Friends, Birthdays and that Sophomore Year

The Aegis (yearbook) write-up is due soon and I am trying to dish out all the best memories I have in the Ateneo to date. I to realize how throughout the years, my decisions have become more calculated; how they have become decisions that would constitute the future. But there was a time when I did the most random things even before the term YOLO (You Only Live Once) existed.

I must have been very lucky to have met people in the dorm, especially my roommates,  that are as crazy and random as I am. Going back through the things that compose my list of randomness, most of them occurred in my sophomore year.

The time Gem and I were bored in our new room, UDS 207.

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The times when we had picnics on the Cervini cliff.

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The times when we celebrated birthdays.

We used to organize birthday surprises and eat out to celebrate a roommate or a friend’s birthday. Topping my list would have to be Joey’s 18th birthday. We gathered at midnight on the cliff and  surprised her with a cake and 18 paper roses.
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Later that day, we had dinner at Pizza Hut Katipunan.

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P.S. Belated happy birthday, Joey! I was supposed to post this on your birthday. Sorry I didn’t make it on time.

 

Whoooops and Whips!

I hereby declare that today, September 30, 2013, is a day dedicated to finish all tasks related to my History 166: Philippine History class. Apart from a comprehensive final exam scheduled next week, we are required to be part of a historical debate and come up with a photo project. These requirements are to be done by group. I am in a group with Ghe Munar, Jigs Sevilla, Jon Mariano, Justine Esguerra and Issa Naguid. Our home departments, Electronics, Computer and Communications Engineering (ECCE) and Department of Information Systems and Computer Science (DISCS) are located in Faura Hall. Hence, we call ourselves Faura Friends.

Ghe, Issa and I were initially set to debate in the first week of September, before Ghe left for France. Unfortunately, there was an error in coming up with the groupings and schedule. There is an odd number of groups and there was not available group to go against us. We were supposed to debate as Government with the motion: “The American annexation of the Philippines was justified over the colonial rule.” Since we had no opponent, our professor decided to let Ghe read her speech. Then Issa and I will be debating on the same topic against a team composed of volunteers from different classes handled by the same professor.

BUT that didn’t happen. Our professor decided that it would be easier if we signed up twice for the second round of debates and just debate on the new motion. (Tsk! Preparation for the first debate went down the drain). But our professor believed that we could pull it off. He was even kind enough to put our whole team in the opposition side. Earlier today, we had to debate as part of the second rounds of debates. Jigs, Justine and Jon battled it out against Team Historectomy. Issa and I went against Team Verbal Conquistadors. We were opposition for both debates on the motion: “This house believes that the Marcos regime was an economic success.”

For both debates, Government skewed the debate to their side by defining economics as macroeconomics. We challenged the definition so as to tackle aspects concerning microeconomics during the regime. We almost bagged the two debates. As our professor put it, we had the right facts, the right arguments but lack the push. But at least we managed to win one out of the two debates.

Having witnessed the first debate where Jigs, Justine and Jon debated, we had an edge in terms of anticipating the arguments of government. But we actually had a good grasp on the matter even during the first debate. But I have to say that I officially suck as the Leader of the Opposition. Although I tried to redeem myself as the Opposition Whip (someone had to speak twice from our team). Jigs and I (as the whip) won as best debaters. Woohoo! Btw, thanks for the photo, Jigs! 🙂

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But we have one more group project to finish which is due on Thursday. I was supposed to finish the write-up tonight. But the American Historical Collection closes early so I wasn’t able to finish jotting down the facts I needed for the Philippine Census in 1945.  As a preview of our photo project, here are the photos we have so far. Disclaimer: These are not the photos to be submitted as part of the photo project. These are the ones who did not make the cut. 

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Surviving the last stretch of the semester

Surviving the last stretch of the semester

Crunch time! With less than three weeks till the semester ends, my blockmates and I are faced with the last set of requirements for the different subjects we are taking. Two things that are not helpful: cold weather that is making me lazy and Candy Crush that just promotes procrastination. Hope we get through this! 😀 *fingers crossed*

Tip: To those who want to organize their to-do-lists, bucket lists or any lists for that matter, you can check out http://todo.ly/ . It is a nifty app to use for organizing lists 🙂

P.S.
The tasks related to our final year project are in a separate file in my todo.ly list. So as other things like preparing for my internship on October and preparing the files to have my internship in PLDT credited for that 1-unit subject in my curriculum.