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December 31, 2006

Happy New Year To All!

Happy New Year to everyone! Advance Happy New to others living in different timelines! May the next year 2007 be better and brighter for everybody.

As I write this post, it's approximately 40 minutes before 12 midnight or 40 minutes left for year 2006 before 2007 creeps in and takes center stage.

This is also very significant to me since it's my first time to celebrate New Year away from my family, outside of the Philippines. It's awfully quite around here, well within the vicinity of neighborhood flats. I had a talk with a local taxi driver; he told me that traffic is not that bad even if some major thoroughfares towards Marina Bay and Vivo City were closed since a lot of people stayed at home. It will be a holiday tomorrow and on January the second. So a longer holiday period for everyone here.

But as I've mentioned, it's awfully quite here (a far cry from the noisy yet happy tradition of celebrating the coming New Year, back in the Philippines). I'm used to hearing every December 31st (and even before that day) lots and lots of firecracker explosions that could literally make all pet dogs wince and cower in fear. But now, I am writing this post with only the background sound of the whirling ceiling fan above and outside engine noises of buses at the nearby intersection.

I mark this night as something special. And now it's approximately 30 minutes left before 2007. I want to spend the few minutes left contemplating the year that was. What I have done, what happened, what should I have done, and what could have happened if I did them. Just like I saw in the news about other Muslim nations celebrating Hari Raya Puasa today when they kneel down in prayer and silently contemplate (instead of boisterous celebrations).

I'll stop for a while. I'll post back tomorrow.

Meantime, have a great Happy New Year to all!

December 25, 2006

More Christmas Pictures

More pictures I've taken of Christmas celebration here in Singapore.

Yesterday afternoon, on the eve of Christmas, I got to be invited by a church friend over to their flat and join in a simple Noche Buena gathering with other friends.

HDB Flat Scenes On December 24

It was awfully quite outside as dusk creep in slowly. Actually, it was raining when we got to the flat. I think we were the only group (all Filipinos) who were loudly celebrating that Christmas eve with lively music, movies, soul food, and some treats for the children of couples who came in the gathering.

As some Filipinos would say: Grabe, ang saya-saya talaga dito ng Pasko sa Singapore, no?


After the event, me and my couple of friends hurriedly went home. I thought I would be able to arrive back to my flat before midnight, but I wasn't able to. Christmas Day came by 12, and I was still inside the bus. I just silently greeted Jesus a happy birthday.


A shot of poinsettias, taken from a church altar

Most of the pictures were taken this afternoon down in Orchard Road where the area was closed to traffic and thousands of people flocked around the vicinity to see the events and free concerts.

Ngee Ann City Mall Lamp Decors

Lamps along Ngee Ann City Mall decorated with yellow and red gem like lights

Colorful Parade Float

One of the colorful parade floats featured in the event

People In Orchard Road

Just too many people criss-crossing Orchard road

Dragonfly On Float

A dragonfly paper figure on a float

Butterfly On Float

This one has a paper butterfly and some flowers and lights used as decors on another float

Figure With Harp On Float

A terracotta figure playing a harp

Star Tree At Paragon Mall

I always liked this Paragon Mall Christmas tree decked with hundreds of stars

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas!

Now I go back to work tomorrow.

December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas Everybody!

Well, technically, tomorrow is December 25 (Asia-Pacific timeline) so tomorrow is Christmas day. But let me greet in advance everyone, especially my family back home, my good and true friends, blogger friends, and my old and new officemates a warm Merry Christmas (Maligayang Pasko).

Below are some of the pictures I've taken around Singapore, particularly at Orchard Road where a thousand lights and Christmas decors are out on display to celebrate a colorful Christmas.

Early picture at Orchard With Christmas Decors

An picture at Orchard Road with Christmas decors

Tangs Mall Decor at Daylight

Tangs Mall beautiful gem decors during daytime...

Tangs Mall Decor at Night

...and at night

Christmas Tree Minis

Small Christmas trees

The Paragon Star Tree at Daylight

The star studded Paragon Mall Christmas tree

The Paragon Star Tree at Night

Same Paragon Christmas tree during the night

The Icy Tree

This is so cold

Tangs Mall Colorful Dangling

Tangs Mall colorful Christmas decor that dangles from the ceiling

Steel and Lights at Wheelock Mall

Remember the tree like blue glass structure of a mall featured in my March blog? Well here is the same one, inside, with Christmas lights

The Hitachi Tree

Hitachi. Inspiring the next... the young and old with its colorful tree

Crowded Intersection

Really, last night was so crowded

Giant Takashimaya Christmas Tree

Giant Takashimaya mall Christmas tree

Christmas Balls Up Close

Up close and personal picture with the Christmas balls

The Carton Tree

This is the carton Christmas tree

Christmas Product Kiosk

A Christmas kiosk

Figures and Aunties

Terracotta figures and the aunties. The aunties are real; mind you

I Am Not Part of the Painting

"I am not part of the painting!"

The Silver Man

I remember I featured some silver students before last September blog post. Not meet the silver man...

The Stilt Man

This is one of the stilt mans along Orchard road giving away flyers and paper ads

The Stilt Man Posing

The tall stilt man posing

Looking Underneath

Underneath the Christmas lights...

December 14, 2006

Mall of Asia

I had a wonderful (short) vacation back in my home country, the Philippines, last December 6-11. We had celebrated my mom's birthday as well as my homecoming for the early Christmas season in our house.

But what made me excited and truly inspired was my visit to the talked-about third largest mall in the world today, the SM Mall of Asia, situated at the reclaimed area in Pasay City, Philippines. This mall is bigger than Vivo City in Singapore, and has the touch of class of its own, unlike any SM mall buildings I have known before.

Last Saturday's visit, I had some shots of the controversial place. This could well be a review or sort of preview for those who haven't yet visited this mall (and for other OFWs out there who are taking their Christmas vacation in the Philippines and are still planning where to take their family).

On with the show...

SM Mall of Asia

The name says it all

Spacious Outside Walkways

Very spacious walkways


Blue structures of the mall

Star Parols

Hanging yellow parols (Christmas lanterns)

Spacious Floor Mall

Wide floor areas to stroll by

Wide Areas

We haven't explored much of the mall's features... literally it will take us more than a day to do so

Arena Area

I call this the arena. I guess this is where some big events are held such as concerts and exhibitions.

Ala Al Fresco Food Court

Class type food court

Christmas Garden

A Christmas garden (with poinsettias)

Back of Mall of Asia

The back of the building

Colorful Light Parols

Truly Filipino made traditional Christmas decors. Something I don't see a lot here in Singapore - something exotic and native decorations for Christmas

Giant Christmas Tree

The mall's giant Christmas tree

Ice Skating Rink

Now that's a huge, olympic size skating rink; SM Malls in this tropical country are known for ice skating rinks

Skating Kids

Zooming in on some kids enjoying ice skating

Other Skating People

More kids and adults skating

Santa and Kids

Good thing my digital camera has 12 times zooming when I got this picture of Santa Claus with some kids and their mom. Looks like Mom wants to kiss Santa Claus...

Jose Marie Chan

Jose Marie Chan, a local singer, belting out his famous inspiring Christmas songs


I want my Jollibee (not burgers, but Chickenjoys!)


The Arena - Toby's all sports item stall

Star Lights

Light up the yellow parols

Blue Globe

Luminous blue globe structure at the mall's expansive parking lot


Fireworks display event at 7-7:3O PM

More colorful fireworks display

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Known to be the webmaster of the defunct Taym Matsing website (well, that's old news now...)