Pick a place to go to on your holiday and bravely fly their on your own. This is my 2 cents advise for the ageing single populace of Dubai who are too bored and can't help but feel stuck in a cubicle of dreams and a life unlived.
Get out there, pick a destination, book a flight and discover a world of possibilities and learn from it, really learn and be all geeky about your destination. I cannot stress research enough. We have the internet at our disposal so use it or be all ignorant and get yourself mugged in a city where people speak 0 english. Goodluck on finding your hotel, kiddo.
A few years ago I had an idle time of my life that I set out on a journey to discovering an entirely new country called Georgia. If you ask me, the geographically challenged mutt, I would probably be wondering if Georgia is in the States but lo and behold this country is in Eastern Europe just below Russia and shares borders with Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Iran which to me gives a taste of what Georgia has to offer with it's Europe meets Asia, diversity on steroids feel. I was right on all counts after a brief 5 day visit and flew back to visit again after 2 years and planning to go again this year. It was diversity on steroids like reading the brief history of the world through it's museums, caves, monasteries, churches and just adoring the mere features of a typical Georgian. You will never be able to place their accent nor their nationality just by looking at them.
Flying budget air via Fly Dubai and landing in a very quiet Tbilisi Airport and exchanging currencies on a window with a sleepy middle aged man already gave me an impression of a sleepy laid back Georgia but they have an open feel towards tourists. I did not get the special treatment but everyone seems open like a hundredfold of Filipinos have visited this man's counter before and the same is true for the immigration officer who eyed me and ask how long do I plan to stay and stamped my passport easy breezy.
I opted to discover Georgia on a budget that I booked an old rustic historical looking ancestral hostel called Tiflis Lux in the central spot in Rustaveli, just near McDonald's where I often get my meals. The Hostel not only helped me in my lodging but they also picked me up at the airport and toured me on a fee. The hostel was a good size that it's occupants did not get through my nerves as we rarely see each other with our own busy itineraries except for one occasion when I had a short debate with this Italian tourist about where the shroud of Turin is kept. Wiki has led me to believe that the seamless robe that Jesus wore before crucifixion is kept in a Cathedral somewhere in Georgia. This was a tunic and should not be mistaken to the shroud of Turin which is kept in Italy. No one won the debate as we are both ignorant to this trivial subject and I sped off doing my city tour solo.
Rustaveli is central that it's easy to hail a cab and be out and about in no less than 10 minutes along Freedom Square to walk through museums after museums of the deep historical great finds of Georgia and their contemporary artists depicting life under the Soviet occupation. Its like sinking deep to what it's like living the oppressed nation of Russia but at the same time looking at their finds and historical artifacts with a sense of awe and wonder. Does Greek mythology have a historical significance? Is the Golden Fleece really in Georgia? It's a clever way to use mysticism, meld it with history and promote a culture steeped in religion as a way of life.
I found my way through Holy Trinity Cathedral after painstakingly explaining as best broken english as I could which Church I want to visit. What better way to describe Holy Trinity by doing a sign of the cross to the unsuspecting cabbie. For a while I though I would have to find a translator but thank God he understood where I want him to take me.
Holy Trinity Cathedral is huge and grand, reminiscent to the old Byzantine Cathedrals of the 14th Century. Its endless flight of stairs begging you to compliment its architect for a historically sound, true to its purpose construction of a traditional Georgian Cathedral which was only built in 2004. The view is breathtaking; the hilly expanse of Tbilisi giving you a sneak peek of more things to see as you venture outside its rugged zigzag roads to Kutaisi, to Mtskheta, Kaszbegi and to whichever world you wish to see for now.
A couple of kilometers away you will find Narikala Fortress via a short cable car ride to see Mother Georgia standing tall and proud like a Greek God boasting its stature for the world to see. I was terrified on my way up and my fear of heights really did not help once I am up there walking around the 1500 metre trail on top of the ridge where mother Georgia stands.
Georgia in July is hot and humid and I found myself hiding in the shade at the foot of Mother Georgia after exchanging my impressions of Tbilisi to an elderly Aussi gentleman who happens to teach and advises Filipino exchange students at his Uni. It was the first time on this trip that I get to speak English and to converse with someone freely that I felt a tinge of sepanx when we parted ways.
The next day I joined my Ukrainian and French Hostelmates to go up the zigzag mountains of Kutaisi to visit Gelati Monastery and Prometheus Cave. It was a 2 hour long ride or it could be shorter but it was gruelling for my sickly-short built. I had a migraine attack on my way back to the city but thanks to my Ukrainian hostelmate, she gave me meds to lull off my screaming brain.
Gelati Monastery is like an old museum of religious artifacts to which a great dig to find clay pots is exposed for tourists to see. No one speaks English and I did not dare ask what it's for so I went my own way to take pictures and drink through the spring water of the monastery.
On our way down and through the small zigzag roads leading to the Prometheus Cave, our driver almost got us lost but we found the huge gate to the Cave, got our tickets and booked a Guide but unfortunately he only speaks Russian. Thank God Ms. Ukraine can speak both English (for me) and French (for her companion) so I went through the maze of the cave feeling lost in translation but English thrown here and there saved me from getting sidestepped from enjoying the grand shopping mall of a cave this Prometheus Cave is. That cave was huge, so huge it took a long time to finish the tour with a boat ride out of the cave and me almost hitting my head on it's pointy rocky interior. Thanks to Ms. Ukraine who pushed my head down avoiding an unpleasant head injury for not understanding the Russian Guide when he signaled all of us to dock down while the boat exits the mouth of the cave via its small opening.
Georgia is like a dream, a pleasant one at that and it's not lacking in expletives and wild imaginings of a child caught in a journey-to-the-center-of-the-earth-esque experience to describe this trip. It was a 5 day trip that seemed forever, not because it was a bore and I did not do anything special but i have done so much at a small space of time and I did not travel as far as two hours from Tbilisi to experience history dating from prehistory, middleages and beyond and I even had an extra day to find souvenirs and get lost at a Chinese Restaurant serving Vermicelli with Spinach and a Japanese Restaurant to get fed rice.
I did came back after a few years and see myself going back for more this year.
See you soon, Georgia!
Sunday, July 09, 2017
Today I pulled a Tarot card and found myself staring into the abysmal future that I am not sure will be what I might be in years to come. It was an Intuition and a Third Eye Chakra card that I was secretly excited to pull but scared at the thought of finally succumbing to the depths of my inner calling. My gut tells me to do that thing that I've always been passionate about but scared to pursue as it won't pay the bills and yes I am not good in it either to use it as a God given talent but there's a push in here somewhere, a nudge that seems to be coming from the cosmos.
I dreamt about my recently deceased father and I kept playing his image doing his happy dance over and over again in my head. Papa has found his eureka somewhere in the afterlife and he is not the type who won't share his little celebrations up in heaven. Papa was thrilled about something and he dances to the silent tune of papaumamaw and obladi-oblada while driving his old beat up Suzuki. Maybe he's cheering for me. Did I get the job?
I have this inner calling to influence people, to be someone's little wonder, an agitator of sorts to stir one out of catatonia and begin to dream and to put their dreams into action, to it's tangible and measurable result.
I see a contract being made waiting for my signature.
And yes I might just start re-writing my manuscript of wild ideas.
I may have a reader waiting to get his/her hands of an unedited, unabashed literature.
I dream, I act, I have MS Word counter to count the words. ( laughs).
Posted by Sputnik at 7:01 PM
Saturday, June 10, 2017
I wish I had true friends. I never thought that at 35 all I would really wish is to have even just a single soul/human to lean on and to cry on through life's deepest tragedies. I had years of hustling about supporting each of my friends' whim till there's nothing left for me to consume, left for dead to rot. There's this pain I cannot pinpoint where but this pain vibrates through my core like a bad ulcer. Did I cause them to betray me? Did I really deserve this? I know God has a plan and he did not leave me behind but I have a feeling there's a message here somewhere. God is forcing me to look within to search for life's true meaning, to seek real worthwhile relationships and lasting connections. Somone out there is waiting for me to reach out. Maybe we are both lost. Maybe we need to forge this healthy alliance to a brighter future. I welcome you, my future friend...
Posted by Sputnik at 9:57 PM
Friday, June 09, 2017
No this is not a hate mail. This is not a checklist of things left unsaid. This is not a list of what I expected you to do and did not do. You see, when I met you, you met that part of me that is whole that I did not need anyone to complete me. I dated you without expecting a normal old fashioned relationship and I guess I saw it coming. It is after all, only a matter of time before someone knocks me up and throws me off-kilter and that person just happens to be you. Would you believe we made such an adorable creature? I could die just watching her sleep, yawn, stretch and just be the perfect little person named Chloe. You see, we are not going to end up together anyway and I guess I will never even want to speak to you but God and the heavens above had a sneaky little plan, so sneaky that we end up meeting sitting across each other in popular coffee shop . I thank you everyday that you pursued me. Even in those brief moments, you look me in the eye and swooned me across and I looked at you and saw the real you. Thank you. Thank you for that brief encounter that gave me the reason to go on, the reason to stand up and dust myself and fight till the end. Chloe is so perfect and she's pure joy. I thank you everyday like a mad woman who won the lottery. Thank you for giving me the reason to live. We will never end up together but you filled the void I never thought I have and for that you are special to me and to your little Chloe.
Posted by Sputnik at 2:04 AM
Wednesday, June 07, 2017
The thing about job hunting is that it is painfully hard. It takes so much wasted and unchannelled energy and so much will power to squeeze your way into the intricate web of seemingly ambitious and ardous line up of candidates and a hay stack of resumes and cover letters. You are lucky a recruiter even glances at your profile for a nano second if your noteworthy or even more insulting is if you'r reduced to being a good looking candidate. How will I be looked at as a job seeker whose skills match a role if a single job vacancy has 500 resumes on a single online jobsite? What has the world come to? How could there be 500 bankers wanting to get into a technical junior position in compliance? Is the banking industry at the helm of becoming obsolete? Why are we all jobless in the first place? Here I am even wanting to consider an Executive Assistant job for a CEO of God knows which industry but I need to feed my family and survive this rabbit hole of a desert. I'm trapped like Alice in a not so wonderland of a villa and like in purgatory I try to elevate my status by living through this like one who embraces suffering for my soul's utter salvation. I am exagerrating like I always do best. One has to be creative or I may have to succumb myself to catatonic stupor imagining a life where I am home tending the fields of my father's backyard farming and playing with my 4 month old child. Life is not sparing me with the teeming color of megalomaniac proportions. Life is life.
Posted by Sputnik at 5:16 PM
Sunday, June 04, 2017
Wow... It's been ages... And I have definitely aged A LOT these past few years. What happened to you Spud? What the hell happened to you? I guess life happened. You stumble, you fall, you get up, life goes on. I was immature years ago struggling to be an adult,toying with this crazy idea off settling in(or down) with basically any random guy that would want a relationship with me and I guess that didn't work and it only left me disappointed. I am not in a perfect Utopian place right now but I'm in a good place fulfilling my destiny, bringing up a child and promising the world my existence. I guess I am here to stay, I am here to conquer the world and no one can ever make me feel that I am nothing because of my inner knowing of who I am and my place in this world. It's sad so much has happened and slowly but surely I shed. I shed friends who are only there when you are useful to them, colleagues who no longer know you when the go and gets tough. I feel broken in the process but I know that something good is waiting for me somewhere in the near future. I suck it all in, let myself get used to this painful truth. People are people and most of the time they destroy each other but I know I am different, I won't falter. I don't want to turn into a deprived monster who lives callously causing wreak and havoc to anyone who happens to be in her path. I want to be zen, yes zen through the unemployment, through me being thousand miles away from my sick father and 4 month old baby and a baby daddy who has abandoned me. Life definitely had its surprises that I never thought would happen to me but it did happen and it only made me stronger.
Posted by Sputnik at 1:47 PM
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
If you were me, you'd be gearing up to take over the world by amassing books and media to occupy your days obsessing and then at 7pm doze off and surrender to the dark dark path of deep slumber. There's just something about an old commentators voice that just lulls you to oblivion. At 1:00am your eyes open and you worry about unexplainable things that you caught from your dream. You wake up scouer your thoughts for any real threat, you check your phone, tinker with your iPad and boom, you can never go back to sleep.
Posted by Sputnik at 6:29 AM