April 6 and 7 was my drive to and from Dingalan Bay in Aurora province. On the way I passed by a long bridge and noticed a picnic type resort of sorts below the bridge with hundreds of people enjoying themselves in a nirvana of joy at this enormous natural mountain spring water gushing from the foot of these Sierra Madre mountains where this river starts / begins. The water starts here. These people get first crack at it. Says so right here on google maps (green arrow):Continue Reading
Hey! I just watched the Pacquiao vs Marquez III fight live. I saw Marquez beat Pacquiao in each and every round. Pacquiao just could not get at Marquez’ rhythm and Marquez has Pacquiao’s movement predicted and scores a round win every time.
By the 9th round I was chearing on Pacquiao, come one man, knock him out, that is your only chance. But Pacquiao just could not reach Marquez’ number. At the end of round 12, even Pacquiao knew he lost, even his corner knows he lost… you can see it in their eyes. I as a fellow Filipino accept that he lost. Come on, even fight 1 and fight 2, Marquez just wins over Manny.
Then the judging, I expected a unanimous decision in favor of Marquez. Then comes the results, majority decision… in favor of Pacquiao????? WTH kind of rigged judging is this? This is so unfair for Juan Miguel Marquez for the 3rd straight time.
Marquez WON but the judges again CHEATED Marquez out of victory. Maybe we the Filipino People should give Marquez our own BELT and Thank Him for putting up such a great fight against Manny.
Well, I myself will humbly express my gratitude to Marquez for being such a great fighter and being the antidote to Pacquiao. I hope big sponsors will hire him to do commercials showing how great he is vs Manny. Some public recognition that yeah, with our own eyes we saw Marquez beat Manny Pacquiao.
There is more honor in accepting defeat at the hands of a skilled fighter who just has your number than “win” at the hands of skewed judging.
We are on our first family road trip. We are using a Toyota Fortuner. Loaded with our supplies. We are on the way to our first leg, Banaue rice terraces. SCTEX was fast and easy. We stopped over for lunch in Cabanatuan. I had my raw beef while the family ate at a commercial place.
I stopped by at Zaragosa market and took some market pictures. They had a different way of presenting their produce and fish. Circular was the market fashion. I found some tiny river shrip, the kind used to make live jumping shrimp with onions. The locals ate it that way too but at home, not on the street. I tasted a small shrimp, delicious. No condiments. And it was clean. Much cleaner than the usual river shrimp in our markets sourced from Laguna lake.
We were looking for a certain River Rock resort in Dupax del Sur, but we didn’t find it. We found ourselves in Bayombong City. Found a friend and she suggested hotel Balay Gloria. Adequate accomodations. My son and I went on a killing spree of 5 mosquitoes before sleeping. Dinner time was in Mrs. Baker restaurant. A formal restaurant that is well publicly reviewed as one of the best. I had lamb, told the lady to have it seared, you know, less than 5 seconds, it somewhat came out still rare, no matter, I ate it. It was good. Cooked paleo diet, rare enough that will not upset my tummy.
Annoying was the internet. Somehow my smart cellular internet died. The sun internet cannot connect. Luckily the Globe cellular internet was working bearable, like I’m blogging right now. The hotel wifi is blah bad. The first wifi is totally broke. And the 2nd wifi is buggy broke, connect once, click a site twice and the connection stops. Yes, we are in the provinces.
By 7am we plan to go to market and look for honey, then go up the mountains of Banaue.
Sifu Sam is someone you dream about visiting and treating your entire household on a regular basis. He is a true holistic teacher and healer. Sifu means master / teacher. Sifu Sam a master at the highest levels of acupuncture with moxy plus massage plus tens machine, which he combines with his holistic approach to diagnosing and treating diseases, injuries and blockages in the human body. He combines this with his knowledge of Traditional Chinese Medicine where he also prescribes to you a recommended diet and Chinese herbs. He combines this with exercise where he teaches you hands on about Tai Chi, Kung Fu and Yoga. Sifu Sam is the complete house visiting healer. And he has the ripped physique of a martial arts fighter. A good role model for children. Sam is a treasure.
Racially, Sam is of Jewish descent. Sam grew up in Australia. He learned from his Kung Fu and Tai Chi in Australia’s Shaolin Yau Kung Mun. Sam in his younger days liked competitive martial arts. Then he got interested in healing and learned Traditional Chinese Medicine and a whole lot of acupuncture. His style of acupuncture is both diagnostic and healing at the same time.
Diet wise, Sam’s own practice is of organic nutrition, more or less paleo diet in content such as raw vegetables, raw fruit plus raw sea food and seared sea food. Sam partakes in healthy carbohydrates for his athleticism with brown rice and whole wheat. (he’s not allergic to wheat)
Best quality of Sifu Sam is he speaks straight English and some Tagalog! The secrets of Chinese medicine de-mystified in straight English for you! He has been in the Philippines long enough, his mission in life is to be a healer in the Philippines, to teach the Filipinos a better way of life, and probably set up many healing centers so that an army of future Sifu Sam’s can heal the entire country.
And Sifu Sam is a great story teller and teacher. Fun to be with. For Grandparents, for the parents and for the children.
So how good is Sifu Sam’s healing?
Cured my 75 year old father in law of 10 years of “incurable” back pain. Plus improved his fading hearing on his left ear. Effectively rolled back the years, given my father in law new youth. 3 or more sessions of his masterful acupuncture, some Chinese herbs, a prescription to partake in eating raw oysters regularly and ta dahhhh…. awesome results. When all the western MDs have given up, all the Chiropractors and Dorn healers had given up, Sifu Sam delivers and cures 10 years of back pain. How about that huh?
Some pictures of Sifu Sam
Here is a video of Sifu Sam teaching Kung Fu and Tai Chi.
Diseased? Sick? Back pain? Nerve problems? You are in luck! Sam is usually either in Metro Manila or Boracay. You might be able to get into Sam’s busy schedule by replying here in this blog post. Tell me your problem, your name and cell phone number, and I will get Sam to text you back.
I finally found the time to post some of our Mount Pinatubo trek hike pictures! No stealing pictures. It’s okay to view, but not okay to steal pics. Go take your own pictures! For a descriptive blog about this trek, visit my previous blog post http://www.myhealthblog.org/2011/02/03/my-mount-pinatubo-trek-hike-adventure-february-2-2011/. On to the pictures!
Mount Pinatubo has a special place in my memory. I know the exact date it last blew up / erupted, June 15, 1991… because just the day before the woman of my life agreed to be my girlfriend. I was 21 years old then. Very much conscious of everything around me by that age. And the Mt. Pinatubo eruption rained down a lot of ash fall in Manila for many many days and ravaged Pampanga and Tarlac victimizing many friends and relatives. It’s been almost 20 years now and it’s about time to scale and conquer this massive destroyer of 1991. Trek, hike, adventure of Mount Pinatubo is only for the fit and those seeking excitement and risk. If you are the type who wants his life in total guaranteed safety, this is not for you. Again, Mt. Pinatubo hike trek is for the fit, who appreciate risk, who seek excitement and interest to see such a historic landmark.
In keeping in line with the theme of this blog, this hike trek of Mt. Pinatubo was made possible because I am now fit and healthy. I had overcome obesity, disease and had reversed aging by some 10 years. I now have youth, strength and stamina from a most wondrous raw paleo diet – the original human diet. Of course I packed raw paleo diet food with raw duck eggs and horse ceviche with lots of garlic (ceviche keeps in the pack). As added safety in this risky hike, our experienced trekker friend Vernon lent us walking sticks that gave us 3rd legs to stand on and be able to traverse the entire hike with zero injury. I am a total newbie to trekking. My last trek was some 2 years ago in Taal Volcano crater.
Our trip up mount Pinatubo started with arriving at 6:30am in the small village of Barangay Sta. Juliana, Capas, Tarlac. We registered with the tourist office, got a brochure, then parked our vehicle with the private 4×4 tour operator. There are dozens of private Mt. Pinatubo 4×4 trekking outfits and our experienced trekker friend chose Alvin Bognot’s home stay at Mt. Pinatubo. For 1,500 pesos, you get a 4×4 vehicle to drive you up to a point, and an authentic Ita / Aeta / “kulot” native guide to follow up the mountain. Then upon arriving back home we were prepared a feast of pork chops, spicy chicken, salted duck egg with tomatoes, fried tilapia and chinese fried rice. Our ita guide’s name was Zaldy. They call themselves ita okay? Call them “ita” because that is what they call themselves. It was a beautiful, perfect weather day this day February 2, 2011 the best day in the 8th time our exprienced trekker friend had scaled this volcano.
The 4×4 was a home made 4×4 which was mechanically adequate and powerful enough to go up to Mount Pinatubo. There are no seat belts, and no doors or roofs, but it did have anti-roll-bars. Do not, absolutely do not take your own vehicle up to mount Pinatubo! You are likely to damage your vehicle, or get yourself killed trying. Let the experts drive you up! They know the way, they have daily experience they have radios. Your cell phone is useless here. The ride was bumpy, wet, wild and exciting, more than a carnival roller coaster can give you. The steepness challenge, the wet sand with enormous rocks and dangerous passes is not for the faint of heart. For this climb we passed via the “skyway”, it’s not always open, but they say this is the most expedient way. We drove in a pair of 4x4s, 2 australian women in a 2nd 4×4.
At a clearing, the 4x4s parked and we were now to go hike on foot for 1 hour. Our ita guide Zaldy was not talkative, in fact he didn’t talk, he helped carry heavy stuff and know the safe way up the treacherous hike. We were hiking up water ways full of rocks on the paths, you look up, there are rocks that may fall on you too. You need a walking stick, a 3rd leg so you don’t fall and injure yourself and you need to walk “sakang” / bow legged to maintain balance and you must concentrate on where you are walking and plan where to step. If you do slip at times you will wet your shoes or wet your bum.
The hike was good and slow, enjoyable. Slow because my good friend with us was some 50 pounds overweight so we knew the load he was carrying. I myself was once 50 pounds overweight. We enjoyed the novelty of the rocks. We enjoyed the flowers. And even saw and tasted some wild strawberries and berries. There was a halfway point with toilet and a place you can rest and eat your meals. We decided to eat breakfast early on the hike before the halfway point by big rocks. The wind was rather cold. I decided to keep warm by staying under the sun and taking off my shirt so I can get the full power of the sun on my body which needed a good charge of sunlight vitamin D. We arrived at the foot of Mount Pinatubo crater view after 1 hour and 30 minutes or more.
The mount Pinatubo crater view was road bricked with the stones and materials available in the area. A nice arrangement. Some wooden sign boards. A deck where you take photos, sit down and talk with your tour guide, and a canteen bar where you could order drinks from an ice chest they bring up the mountain. Nobody stays there overnight. You can have a choice of Gatorade, canned soft drinks and coffee. Sorry, no wine and no alcohol nor beer was there at that time. I chose Gatorade, got 2 of them. Hopefully it replenished my electrolytes. It’s not raw paleo diet but it should get me through the day. Magnificent Pinatubo crater lake view. Fantastic. And you can take a closer view down below. This crater view modern area had been established for only 1 year.
You get to walk down to the crater lake itself. There is a stretch of sandy “beach”. But beware, the water goes straight down like a cliff after a few steps. Rumor has it that the last sonar measurement was 77 meters depth in the crater lake, around 252 feet deep. The signboards say “no swimming”, that there are no lifeguards, and that the depth is undetermined. Earily, you look into the water and see there is no animal LIFE in it. Rumor has it people tried restarting life and put fish in the waters, but none survived, probably no plants they can eat. Funny, we keep seeing tourists, foreign white tourists swimming anyway. And we even saw a bunch of swimmers huddled and swam more than 200 meters from the official crater tourist shore. Ah well, it’s their risk. Told you this was only for the adventurous and this is where the adventurous congregate.
The tourists in this Mount Pinatubo adventure trek? A lot! Global. Different nationalities. Some old people too! If old seniors can climb up, then you can too. We even saw a German couple with 2 tiny children: a 2 year old and a 3 year old. We thought they were insane but they may be experienced trekkers. Do not just walk in and expect to be able to go out the same day to trek on weekends. On weekends, there are just too many tourists the 77 four wheel drives are fully booked on weekends. So call first. Reserve first. We went on a weekday. Not that many tourists, but enough of them this Wednesday. We saw German, Dutch, French, Canadian, American, Korean.
On to the boats! You can rent a boat for 250 pesos per person for up to 6 people in each boat. The boatman took us across the lake to another beach where the sand was warmed by the volcanic energy, on the beach, you can see the steam, the water vapor, some of the rocks were hot to the touch and the water may be too hot for bare feet. There is another beach across but it was off limits / forbidden to go to as your human flesh will burn there, in fact parking your boat may burn the boat!
Super luck! We heard and saw volcanic rumblings and a big landslide across from the hot beach. The boatman said they have that everyday but this one was the loudest one he had seen. And we caught it on video!!! This volcano is still active. No doubts about it. The Ondoy storm in 2009 instantly terra formed the crater in various ways, collapsing some caldera segments, and resulted in lowering the water level significantly afterwards.
Going down was much easier. We were the last to go down the mountain.
Safety please: Patronize the Local Operators
On the way back in the vast lahar plains we saw a Korean looking man with his vehicle left rear tire stuck in a hole, we gave a rope and the 4×4 behind us helped tow him out of the hole. Told you you shouldn’t bring your own vehicle and stick with the local tour operators. We were the last vehicles to go down. If we didn’t see him or help him, he would be stuck there overnight!
In the last Ondoy big downpour typhoon in 2009, some foolish persistent French tourists were rejected by the local Pinatubo tour operators because storm Ondoy was coming. They were persistent and drove back to Angeles city and rented a 4×4 outfit there and drove up Mt. Pinatubo. Of course the big bad Typhoon Ondoy hit Mt. Pinatubo while the 4 man French tourists plus their Angeles driver and a tour guide were up the mountains. They all died, their vehicle was never found, possibly buried in a massive landslide, their bodies and body parts were found in several pieces and various locations downstream.
So check the weather. Follow your local Sta. Juliana tour operator. No means NO! When they say it is impassable today, they mean it. When they say it is passable, it is so. The local operators have home stay options for only 500 pesos a night with meals! Let the professionals guide you. Our tour operator contact numbers are:
Homestay / Mt. Pinatubo
Mr. Alvin Bognot
Brgy. Sta. Juliana, Capas, Tarlac.
Cellphone No. +63-919-861-4102
Tell him Edwin Casimero referred you from this blog.
Pictures and videos to be posted soon!
The fitness legend Jack LaLanne died recently. I just know Jack from his juicer endorsements. It’s only now in this tribute article did I learn how great this man was. Check out the quote by Jack, “The only way you can hurt the body is not use it. Inactivity is the killer and, remember, it’s never too late.”
And more quotes from the legend:
When he turned 43 in 1957, he performed more than 1,000 push-ups in 23 minutes on the You Asked For It television show. At 60, he swam from Alcatraz Island to Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco handcuffed, shackled and towing a boat. Ten years later, he performed a similar feat in Long Beach harbor.
“I never think of my age, never,” LaLanne said in 1990. “I could be 20 or 100. I never think about it. I’m just me…
I hope to turn into something like Jack in the future. Probably not as strong, but maybe hope to live a lot longer… say 120 years old.
One thing I learned when you are healthy, is you completely forget about aging. I always feel I’m in my early 20s.
More on the tribute article to the death of Jack LaLanne at http://www.npr.org/2011/01/24/133167438/fitness-pioneer-jack-lalanne-dies-at-age-96