Friday, May 29, 2009

[NUOVO] CINEMA PARADISO


Cinema Paradiso tells the story of Toto/Salvatore, a successful film maker who returns to his hometown after 30 years when he learned that his good friend, Alfredo, passed away. The night before he came back, he had a recollection of his past life in his small town where he developed this profound friendship with Alfredo, Cinema Paradiso's (the theater in his town that Toto frequented when he was just a boy) projectionist.

For some movie critics, this movie talks about a lot of things such as movies per se, the Italian culture, love and relationships, etc. but what moved me is the film's lesson on friendship, enthusiasm and dreaming. I am a people person and I love gaining friends, not the superficial type wherein you just enjoy being with each other.. but more of the Alfredo-Toto kind of friendship. It's about learning and standing by each other even when worse comes to worst. It was a friendship bounded to last even if they haven't seen each other for years. It's not the kind that refuses to let go of someone dear even if it means pursuing his dreams. Sometimes we just have to let go of our loved ones for them to find what will truly make them happy.. as I believe that what would make them happy would also mean fulfillment on my part.

Talk about dreams.. when I was little, like Toto, I had my share of aiming for something. I would often make paper dolls and paper outfit for my friends' paper dolls; draw my dream house; compete in poster making contests; keep a sketch pad and coloring books... I thought I was going to be an Architect, an Interior Designer or a Fashion Designer, but this dream of getting into the Arts didn't materialize. I guess I was just afraid of making an initial step in turning my dreams into reality. I'm not only speaking for myself, I know for a fact that a lot of people don't really get to fulfill their dreams due to fears, lack of means or lack of support from their loved ones. And I admire Toto because of his consistency when it comes to his ambition -- that is to get into something that involves movies, thus, after much trials he was able to make it as a well-known film maker.

I am deeply touched by how an old man developed affection for a little rascal like Toto. It made me realize that friendship knows no age bracket. Also, it is touching how it shows that "fatherhood" isn't always about "blood".. it's a relationship that goes beyond being of the same kin. It's a wonderful feeling of being accepted, supported and loved.

This movie may be a bit sentimental, but it's not like those where you'd see yourself crying all throughout the film. I think I just shed a tear twice -- when Alfredo came in to see Toto in Cinema Paradiso after he met an accident (when the theater caught on fire and Alfredo was burned). I felt the old man's gratitude to Toto for saving his life. Another part that made me teary eyed was the last part wherein Toto watched a film that contained all the kisses that were removed from the movies shown at the Paradiso over the years (kissing scenes were edited out from movies, as imposed by the church/priest). It was assembled by Alfredo as a gift to Toto. The film was beautiful that as Salvatore watches it, tears came running from his eyes.

Cinema Paradiso also involved stories about falling in love, trying out, fighting for your love, disappointments, getting hurt and moving on.. but it didn't get into me as much as what stories on friendship and dreaming did to me. I guess it's because the tale of love in this film isn't the same as what we're going through in present time.. I don't know, or perhaps I was just keen on friendship and the type of culture that Italian people depicted in this film rather than focus on Elena, Toto's one true love. But you know, even in Toto's love life, Alfredo's thoughts also mattered and it always boils down to: going after what your heart says.


Alfredo: Once upon a time, a king gave a feast. And there came the most beautiful princesses of the realm. Now, a soldier, who was standing guard, saw the king's daughter go by. She was the most beautiful one, and he immediately fell in love with her. But what could a poor soldier do when it came to the daughter of the king? Well, finally, one day, he managed to meet her, and he told her that he could no longer live without her. The princess was so impressed by his strong feelings that she said to the soldier: "If you can wait 100 days and 100 nights under my balcony, then at the end of it, I shall be yours." Damn! The soldier immediately went there and waited one day. And two days. And ten. And then twenty. And every evening, the princess looked out of her window, but he never moved. During rain, during wind, during snow, he was always there. The bird shat on his head, and the bees stung him, but he didn't budge. After ninety nights, he had become all dried up, all white, and the tears streamed from his eyes. He couldn't hold them back. He no longer had the strength to sleep. All that time, the princess watched him. And on the 99th night, the soldier stood up, took his chair, and went away.

Salvatore: ... In one more night, the princess would have been his. But she also could not possibly have kept her promise. And it would have been terrible. He would have died. This way, however, at least for 99 days, he was living under the illusion that she was there, waiting for him.

Not crying while watching this film doesn't mean it's not poignant, believe me, I'm so moved I even told my friend Duchess I'm gonna lend her the disc next time we meet.


Alfredo: Living here day by day, you think it's the center of the world. You believe nothing will ever change. Then you leave: a year, two years. When you come back, everything's changed. The thread's broken. What you came to find isn't there. What was yours is gone. You have to go away for a long time... many years... before you can come back and find your people. The land where you were born. But now, no. It's not possible. Right now you're blinder than I am.

Salvatore: Who said that? Gary Cooper? James Stewart? Henry Fonda? Eh?

Alfredo: No, Toto. Nobody said it. This time it's all me. Life isn't like in the movies. Life... is much harder.


Yes, Alfredo, LIFE IS MUCH MUCH HARDER...

Shit happens... and you just have to deal with it. ;)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

052309

This is it. This is finally it. Now, I am finally baring my soul.

It’s been weeks since I started to hold my heart firmly as I am scared. I’m afraid. I’ve always been afraid. That if I let loose of my heart, it would find its way back to you. Something that I don’t ever wanna happen. Not because I don’t love you, I do. And I’m always ashamed of letting you know whenever you ask – it’s enough that you see. I love you. I will always do. It’s just that saturation point is already painted on my face. The threshold has arrived. The pain is too much, hence, unbearable.

It hurts. You are hurting me not or so that you don’t want me anymore. It’s because I freed myself from your trap. A painful circumstance that’s covered by a beautiful episode. Those instances wherein I almost unclothed myself by baring my susceptibility to you. For opening my heart to you. I am distressed, that you knew exactly how I feel yet you’re oblivious of what I’ve been going through. Aren’t those enough? I know somehow you want a piece of me.. but would you mind if I ask you to ask for more? Or perhaps I could ask for something. One thing that I know you’d be scared of doing.

I am consistently against your demeanor. Neither did I feel good looking at you losing your track. Yet I tried to show what’s odd – seemed fine yet throbbing inside.

It hurts me a lot thinking that I am now on the verge of losing you. I love you so much that I don’t ever wanna lose you. But what will I do? Shall I wait for my doomsday? Or shall I walk away with grace.

Either way – I know it would hurt. A little bit or too much. Still, it would hurt. This same old feeling that almost never goes away.

Another strip of band-aid for this wound... please?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

THE ROAD NOT TAKEN


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by ROBERT FROST


Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

____________________________________________________________________

An answer to your questions... and all your almost kinda irresistible words.

** Sorry I have no picture of two roads and ng yellow wood. :D 

Photo taken in Nueva Ecija


Monday, May 18, 2009

NICK & MAY

Who says Long Distance Relationships don't work?

I do. :D

But this couple, despite uncertainty, proved that LDR, indeed is possible. Something that may end in happily ever after. :)

Nick grew up in the States while May is based here in Manila. They were introduced by a common friend (or a cousin of one of them) and their romance bloomed out of the internet. You see, the power of chatting is very sound. :D The groom went home to the Philippines, got to spend time with the bride... and voila! They were so compatible in so many ways.. and fell in love with each other. He proposed and so marriage came in next.

They already got married in civil rites last year. Still, they wanted to have a church wedding so here goes their very beautiful wedding. :)


GALLANT NICOLO TOLENTINO & ROSSERIE MAY CARIAGA
May 16, 2009
Notre Dame Vie de Chapel
Las Pinas City

-----o0o-----

Suppliers:

Hair and Make Up : Princess Misa
Gown : Mia Barlaan
Photo and Video : Ariel Javelosa Photography
Caterer : Juan Carlo Catering
Flowers : 1558 Flowers & Style
Entertainment : JJS Entertainment
Photo Booth : Party Pics Live
Host : Chacha Arevalo

-----

As usual, I was teary eyed throughout the wedding. :D I was there from the hotel preparation, at the mass.. up to the reception. I was working for nearly 16hours on this day. And I'm sooo tired and sleepy, but I can't wait to post these pictures.

So... here they go... enjoy! :)

Oh, BTW... Let me quote a few lines from the bestman (of course, I wasn't able to get the exact words but below is the gist):
Happiness comes either sooner or later in our life. Some pursue happiness, some don't. Some look for it and find it. Some look for it but never find it. Others find it but never get it. You're lucky to have found and gotten the happiness that you truly deserve.

Oo nga noh? Many people find happiness kahit a lot of times pa... however, finding something that would make you happy doesn't always mean you can get it. *deep sigh*

Backstreet Boys of Ariel Javelosa Photography
 

Guestbook, also by Ariel Javelosa Photography
Gown by Mia Barlaan
 

Paraphernalia for the mass
Fernbrook by day (site inspection!)

Notre Dame Vie de Chapel




Flowers by 1558 (already there hours before their call time )

The cake (sorry, I'm shooting from behind)

Slide Presentation (Music: I Wanna Get Close by Freestyle and Kyla), also by Ariel Javelosa Photography (they also have onsite AVP but encountered some technical issues)
Newlyweds
Bridal Car

-----o0o-----



THE TEAM:







More Photos: Click HERE














I Wanna Get Close - Freestyle Feat. Kyla

Thursday, May 14, 2009

OF STRESS AND EMOTIONAL TORMENT

Sometimes I can't figure why a lot of bad things happen at the same time. To test your endurance? Your faith? Your saturation point? Why can't they just come one at a time? I'm really tired. This week has been hell for me. Emotionally and physically.

Yeah, physically. I am not being psychosomatic this time, it's real. I went back to the doctor this afternoon and got the official diagnosis of what I've been going through these days. It's kinda tiring 'coz I'm not really a hospital person, I am not used to going to the doctor even if my sister and her husband are doctors. I am afraid of doctors. I am tired of this medication that's why I promised that I'll try to live a healthy lifestyle so that I can recuperate soon. Apart from being tired of going through a routine, I find it hard to grasp everything.. though I could have been celebrating because it was different from something that I expected, the feeling hasn't changed... this thing that happened will forever linger. Because it is something that forced me to decide about this thing that's hard to do. Kung anuman yon, akin na lang yon. :(

After my own battle with illness, I went a little shopping with my friend as a "therapy" for myself. However, as we go on our foodtrip we got a bad news from our friend that a college friend is in the hospital due to kidney failure. He has undergone dialysis today and needs a kidney donor badly. He is soooo young (our batch) and has been a health buff, but why did this happen to him? :(

After dinner, we proceeded to Medical City to visit our patient friend.

I got one of the biggest surprises of my life when we opened the door of the hospital room. Several guys were inside; his fraternity brods... and my eyes got bigger when I saw a guy in green poloshirt (I was also wearing a green poloshirt). Rastaman. My ex-boyfriend. I was literally shaking as we enter the room. He hugged my two friends, Amae & Che and they were screaming as if they were not in a hospital room.. while me, on the other hand, just passed by and automatically raised my hand and said "Hi" without even looking at the person. I felt strange. Weird. Not that I still have feelings for him, but for an unfinished business.. I think I haven't really asked for forgiveness for everything that I've done and for all the pain that I inflicted on him. For me (as well as for my friends), he's the ultimate lover of all time.. he's the one who really loved me with all his heart. And I just hurt him so bad. We haven't seen and "spent" some time with each other for around 4 years now (except for this one instance when he and his wife saw me at the ground level of my office building a few months ago).

I almost got a stiff neck as he was in front of me and I didn't want to look at his face. My head was stuck at the direction of the patient while my eyes were staring at the TV without even knowing what the program was. When he and his friends left for a quick yosi break, I asked my friends if we can go already. We passed by them at the yosi area. Again, I just nodded, said "Bye" and went straight to a nearby restaurant to eat.

I'm kinda disappointed with myself because I know that it's been years and I should bury the hatchet. It's just sad that I can't even look at him. Out of hiya? Or out of kahihiyan? Or out of disappointment that "hey, I chose another man over you.. but look at me now, I'm such a LOSER".. tsktsk. He's already a family man, by the way. But I heard he's having marital problems right now.

I just hope he and his wife (even if they're not married yet) would be able to fix things.

He deserves to be happy after all.

__________________________________________________________

If seeing my ex-boyfriend was one big surprise, what happened yesterday is a lot more complicated than what I had today. I got a dose of stress because it involved betrayal and emotional pain.

How would you react if you found out that someone you trust betrayed you? Would you freak out? Would you do things to get even? Would you keep your silence and pretend that nothing has happened? Yesterday, I got my own answer to this question. Why would I keep mum if speaking up is the best thing to do.. It was a difficult decision as I would never want to be tagged as someone who's destroying another colleague's reputation. I just exposed what's real. And it hurts because he was not just a boss to me -- he was a friend. On my end, it was real. I just don't know on his. Perhaps, it was a bad decision to get super close with someone at work. Because I am different from what he is, he may be a FORMER friend, but I was never part of his drama.

I had the opportunity to talk to the Chairman to bring up the issues that I have long been wanting to divulge, with the help of the whole team. We had a little planning about what's supposed to happen and what to do with that person. I almost gave up... My tears fell and all I had in mind was TO QUIT. I am not capable of doing things from scratch. How will I get up again after someone ruined everything.. it's really hard to be back to where we began.. I almost gave up, I almost submitted a "love letter".. until the Chairman uttered:

Don't be sad that someone betrayed you. Be happy because you were given the opportunity to grow. It is a challenge.. show him that you're better than him. Show him that his absence will not affect you, in fact it will drive you to do your best.

Yes boss, I know we can. Together. I was just being honest when I told you that I can't do it alone. I am still a neophyte when it comes to all of these. I appreciate the help of the whole team, but me on top isn't enough...

I am still not enough.

I've never been enough. :( :( :(


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

GERALDINE’S SODA FOUNTAIN AND DINER

It's been a while since I posted an entry about food and dining, good thing last weekend we went to Tagaytay Highlands for a day out with my friends. We've been to Highlands several times already but it was the first time that we were able to try Geraldine's located along Camp Highlands Drive.

Geraldine's is a diner and ice cream parlour with 60's atmosphere. The decors hanging on the wall are soooo cute I wanted to bring home Betty Boop. ;) Also, it was fun being a DJ for a day, as the jukebox there is still operating. Of course, the songs are oldies, those that are soothing. Sadly, though, we were not able to find Moon River, but Curlypout played Can't Help Falling In Love for me. Not really my favorite song, but the music from one of my all-time favorite movies -- Fools Rush In. :)

Here are the pictures from our weekend food trip!

Enjoy! :)



Jukebox Queens

Baked Mac
Strawberry whatever :P
Burger
Peaches & Cream

Be sure to try Geraldine's  if ever you're visiting Highlands. :)


A DOORMAT OR A DREAMGIRL?

The bitch I'm talking about is not the "bitch on wheels" or the mean-spirited character that Joan Collins played on Dynasty. Nor is it the classic "office bitch" who is hated by everyone at work.

The woman I'm describing is kind yet strong. She has a strength that is ever so subtle. She doesn't give up her life, and she won't chase a man. She won't let a man think he has a 100 percent "hold" on her. And she'll stand up for herself when he steps over the line.

She knows what she wants but won't compromise herself to get it. But she's feminine, like a "Steel Magnolia" -- flowery on the outside and steel on the inside. She uses this very femininity to her own advantage. It isn't that she takes undue advantage of men, because she plays fair. She has one thing the nice girl doesn't: a presence of mind because she isn't swept away by a romantic fantasy. This presence of mind enables her to wield her power when it is necessary.

In addition, she has the ability to remain cool under pressure. Whereas a woman who is "too nice" give and gives until she is depleted, the woman with presence of mind knows when to pull back. **
--o0o-- 

I've been a BITCH. Several times already. Until now... now that I've been trying my best to veer away from something that's really painful not to be with. Something that's really enticing yet lethal. I'm incessantly fighting with myself to never come near that venom once more. I know I am strong. I am smart enough to know what's real and what's not. I am a strong willed woman who knows what she wants and what she deserves. And yeah, I am a BITCH.

But I was never a DREAMGIRL. Irony, it is.

I've been reading this book (Why Men Love Bitches by Sherry Argov) for days now, and honestly I don't agree with it 100% since it's kinda idealistic and what I think is beyond my competence as a "Lover Wannabe". I am known to be a cynic.. and no rules/guidelines could change the way I see/handle love and relationships. But why did I opt to read this book? Let's just say.. sometimes I tend to be a passive person and when my friends told me it's good, I believed them. Also, I've been hearing a lot about this, thus, I grabbed a copy. I don't say that this isn't good -- it's just that, believing too much in what's written will make it hard for me to create my style.
Everyone has known a "nice girl". She is the woman who will overcompensate, giving everything to a man she barely knows, without him having to invest much in the relationship. She's the woman who gives blindly because she wants so much for her attentions to be reciprocated. She's the woman who goes along with what she thinks her man will like or want because she wants to keep the relationship at all costs. Every woman, at some point, has been there. **

... and that includes ME.

Even if I am known to be a "bitch", still, there are times that I unveil the weaker side of me. I tend to be the the DOORMAT (Argov's other term for nice girl) at times. Well, who doesn't lean toward his/her soft side? Nobody, I guess.. even Manny Pacquiao becomes soft under Aling Dionisia's "spell", doesn't he?

I loved them, and I did everything to please them. Even making myself look like a total DOORMAT. But to hell with those who pity me, I am just human. Remember those times when all I had to do in this blog is to rant and cry my heart out for being the uber giving woman that I was before? (the "old" visitors of this blog can attest to that) I may be past that phase, but I can still be that same person when the situation calls for it.

I may be a bitch most of the time, and rarely a nice girl. Either way, I know that when I fall in love again I would go back to what I always believe in: WHEN LOVE HITS YOU, YOU HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO GIVE IN. No guidelines, no self help books will direct me to wherever.. only my heart will tell me what to do. Just like what most people say: follow your heart.

I could be a very nice girl for the first time, I could also be a combination of a bitch and a doormat... or worse, I could forever be a bitch, but one thing's for sure.. I am a BITCH WITH A BIG HEART. :)


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**Excerpts from Why Men Love Bitches by Sherry Argov

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