By some stroke of luck (or horror—jk), I went out on a Friday. I generally stay away from Friday plans because the traffic here in Manila sort of sets up your Friday for you—you’ll spend at least four hours on the road. “Thank God It’s Friday,” said no one in Manila, ever.
Sidenote: there was a bit of hoopla around a passage in one of Dan Brown’s newest books, in which he called Manila ‘the gates of hell’ or something because of the unforgiving traffic, and I remember indignant people saying, “Traffic here is not that bad!” I wonder if the horrible traffic these days is revenge unleashed upon us by Dan Brown’s guardians of honor. Ahem.
So, Friday. This Friday, I first went to The Collective to look at Ritual, since Sarie really wanted some ice cream, ever since I told her it was good, lol. I ended up taking home some shampoo, an anti-aging serum (of course), and smelling salts for relaxation!
I treated her to some ice cream, but we really wanted to try the butter. I’m coming back for the coarse salt from General Santos because they are amazing and huge. Then we had some dumplings from Wabi-Sabi, which were not as yummy as we remembered.
The lemongrass iced tea was still top-notch and refreshing, though!
My first article for Young Star was a piece on the then-newly opened compound, and I walked around the warehouse to see if some of my favorite “originals” were still in business. Some were, so that was nice. :)
Next, we planned a gallery hop to Manila Contemporary then Silverlens, but MC was closed. Still, I was happy to catch shows by Jonathan Ching, Ling Quisumbing, and a group show by Lyra Garcellano, Jay Ticar, and Dennis Gonzales.
Here’s a preview of the works, which I’m hoping to write about sometime this week. The photos “on the field” are by Sarie, by the way. These exhibits are on display until October 19th.
Cristina Quisumbing Ramilo
Then, we had dinner over at McKinley Hill since I really wanted to try L.E.S. Bagels. Tough luck, we went at around 8:30 and none of the special bagels were available, except for the sesame!
I had the sundried tomato + basil cream cheese, and while it was good, it was not worth Php 180. The bagel, by itself, is Php 40. Sarie wrote about it here.
For dinner, we headed over next door and had the best fries ever! Maybe next to truffle fries. But guys, Rosemary Fries with garlic mayo. Awesome. I hate mayo, but I loved the garlick-y taste with these beauties!
This was over at Main Street, which reminds me of Big Bad Wolf a lot. The fried chicken was delicious, as was the homemade Maltesers ice cream.
Finally, at the sign of the storm, Sarie dropped me off at Shangri-la Makati, where my dad and sister were. My dad’s new paintings were being installed, so I said I’d hitch with them, for the ride home.
The wait turned out to be a wait until 3 AM, but it was fun. My sister taught papa to play Plants vs. Zombies and then we drew a little and ate dismal cake. I’m so proud of my dad, and I know I say that a lot, but he’s just so good at what he does.
We got home pretty pooped, but at least we avoided the traffic.
I know I am incredibly hermitty, and have increasingly been so the past few months, but this was one of the better days, even if we just went around to see a bunch of random things and places. I guess exploration—even tiny excursions like this one—will always make me feel like I’m not in the mood for it. But I know the correct response is always, “Go.” So, I’ll try harder to listen to that voice.