Vision. A gift that has been neglected and overlooked by most people with perfect sight but one gift not bestowed to individuals such as myself. You see, ever since my first live memory I have always been a four-eyed kid. My fashion in glasses has evolved from classic thick gold frames to semi framed ultra thin lenses that costs ..PHPPP.. a lot! 

but with bright gold rim... yuck!
never fails to burn a hole in my pocket!
 I had a hard time doing outdoor activities or physical activities because of the eyeglasses and so I find my hobbies leaning to reading reading and reading. No wonder people with glasses are oftentimes avid reader! Books consumes my waking hour until sleeping time as I put myself into the shoes of my favorite characters in the fiction books I read. Some says that the strain in reading just aggravates the eye situation but like most of us says, you can’t break what is already broken anyways (>_<). Little kids with eyeglasses looking timid & shy, nudging the center bar upward because the glasses keeps on sliding down the nose holds a special place in my heart. 

awwwww. cute boy
With the advancement in science (I suppose), contact lenses becomes The Miracle to people like myself who finds eyeglasses really burdensome and always in the way! The era of contact lenses immensely improved my activities, schedules, and hobbies. I can truly say that I am a master of popping in the lenses and squeezing it out of my eyeballs!!! These soft contact lenses comes with me wherever I go, overnights, out of towns, etc and always with extra pairs ready just in case I happen to lost my current ones. There were countless incidents with contact lenses that left me teary red eyed with pretty bad sting, it hurts! There were even times I cannot locate the lenses in my eye that I was already gently squeezing my eyeballs, hehehehehehe! I do believe that my eyeballs have been quite abused and overused.

i had gray, blue, amethyst, etc etc Love Colored Lens!
Fast forward to the present. I was quite happy and content with my colored contact lenses changing my eye color every month that when my sister brought up the idea of Lasik, I quickly scrap it off. I know a number of friends who had Lasik done and was happily recommending it to me but the risk involved and the word “operation” associated with it just gives me the shivers! I appreciate so much the beauty of creation and drown in the sight of culture and people and food and life that the idea of risking my SIGHT was nightmare! Nonetheless, the Chinese in me gave in a little when I heard the magic word “promo” hahahaha! You must think I’m crazy now, I did think I was when I asked more about this promo hahahaha! 
something like this for your visualization
The short version of the mechanics to this promo was that if we were three people having the surgery (eeew) it would be 30% off for each of us, “each” being the second magic word! So still scared and undecided, I went for the “Assessment Exam” that costs around P2,500.00 to determine whether I am eligible for the Lasik Surgery. The Assessment Exam was very meticulous and detailed, taking more than half a day to finish and leaving your eyes blurred for the rest of the day. I find myself admiring the detailed procedures and steps they take to really check the eyeball. A quick summary to get you informed: there was the standard computerized grade check, manual grade check, retina scan, cornea check, size of the eyeball, size of the cornea, the softness of the eyeball, and other technical tests. After everything is done, they finally let me see the doctor who would tell me that I passed for Lasik and immediately asked if I want it done right away. I gave a quick “No, I would just schedule it” and chicken out of the clinic. My sister had her surgery a month ahead than mine and thank God, it went smooth and successful. She was very very VERY happy with the results and encouraged me to do it. I prayed about it, weigh the pros cons risks, and finally against my natural judgment, I scheduled my operation.

March 9, 2011 – LASIK DAY
7:00am – Call Time at Asian Eye Institute
7:15am – Prep for Surgery (Change shoes, Wear the surgical gown, Remove Glasses – for the last time! )
all ready but my heart was beating double time this time
7:30am – Took half pill of what I suppose was a sleeping pill to get me calm plus first ANESTHESIA drop on my Right Eye (first eye to be operated)
8:00am – Went in the Operating Room a bit fuzzy but still very conscious. I lie down on the operating bed / table. There were around 5 assistants together with Dr. Ang inside the cold operating room.
1.   My left eye has a cotton pad taped on my skin
2.   My right eye was opened wide and a metal opener was carefully inserted to keep my eye open. I can feel the cold metal but there is no pain at all, a little discomfort maybe.
3.   To hold the metal opener they placed a tape mask on the surrounding areas covering everything except my widely opened eye. :D
4.   I can hear the machines humming and vibrating so it is kinda freaky but a kind nurse (I think she was a nurse) was holding my hand (awwww….)
5.   My right eyeball is completely “under” so I cannot feel anything BUT I can see everything
6.   A procedure is made to cut the opening to the cornea (I won’t elaborate here but you can email me)
7.   I can literally see the motion of opening the cornea flap! Cool!
8.   I was advised that I will smell something liken to burning metal (Shoot! No more turning back! Eeeek!) so I just give a silent “uhuh…”
9.   Then there were green lights appearing at the RED LIGHT I was told to focus on the entire time… Later on, I realized this was the actual laser operation happening. Again, no pain, no sensation at all!
10.        The green lights went off and Dr. Ang started to wipe my eyeballs and flapping back the cornea into place telling me that it was successful. They proceeded to do my Left Eye.
8:20am – Both eyes received Lasik Operation successfully, I was led out of the operating room back to the Holding Area and the very kind nurse administered another set of drops. I was not sure if I have regained my perfect sight because I felt the need to just close my eyes for a moment… before facing the moment of truth hahaha!
8:30am – Second round of drops were placed and I started to look around and checking out my vision as if it was a brand new toy placed on my hands. I kept on blinking to focus my vision better.
8:45am – I was sent home with instructions (I won’t elaborate here but you can email me)
9:00am – I arrived home and slept all day. The pill probably kicked in and though it was just a few hours from when I started, I felt tired. It was maybe due to the stress of the whole ordeal =p
Blade used to slice the Cornea. Used only for me! :)
medicinal drops. good thing they are so cute and colorful.
proof! :-)
Fast forward to today. The moment I wake up everyday, I still get a tingling sensation, a wonderful realization, and a thankful heart in my brand new sight. Seeing the world with my new clear vision was like seeing it for the first time! I can’t wait to use it to climb mountains, go snorkeling, take more photographs, and travel the world with my new hassle-free vision! Truly, you get to appreciate something as basic as sight if you never really had a perfect one. So for those with perfect vision, please be thankful & grateful because you are spared from seeing the world in a blur. Lord, thank you for the wonders of technology that provided this miraculous gift to me!

I had my Lasik at Asian Eye Institute located at the 8th floor of Phinma Tower, Rockwell. My attending doctor is Dr. Ang. You can request to have a DVD of the surgery... I did! :-) Please email me at for your questions, would be happy to share what I can and know. =D

Here is my last photo with glasses on ;-)
buh-bye eyeglasses!

Damoen Saduak Floating Market

Woke up 6am to be on the road by 7am so that we can reach the famous and touristy "Damoen Saudak Floating Market" which is in the outskirts of Bangkok, around 2 hours drive. We hired a private car (on a separate post) that brought the 6 of us to a whole day of sightseeing outside Bangkok! :D

This market is unlike the ones I've been in Ho Chi Minh where it was wholesale market there with barges and huge loads in their long big boats! Here in Damoen Saduak, it's the floating market I've been wanting to experience!

Interestingly, this is the exact place where some popular movies where shot like Bangkok Dangerous and one of the Bond 007 movie series! :D

A lot of merchandise are up for sale not to mention FOOD sprawling around the market! :) 

It was already a very "happening" place as early as 830am when we arrive! Much more when we dock back in at around 10am, there was already TRAFFIC in the canal! :)

Finally one list ticked off! Fun Fun FUN! 

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Baguio's Korean Invasion

Name might sound puzzling for a Korean Restaurant but Wood Nymph is as authentic as it can be. Why is that so? Because upon entering the spacious wooden abode we were pleasantly greeted by a group of Korean customers! My barometer of testing the authenticity of a restaurant especially those specialty ones is to see whether they can attract "their local guests" to come in and enjoy. The restaurant is located a bit off the main road and you need to ask along the way just so you don't get lost in the winding roads of Baguio. Before you hit Nevada Square make a right turn to Old Military Cut Off road then a few meters to your left you will see the wooden gate entrance of Wood Nymph. For those who bought private cars, there is a right turn entrance to a parking lot where we entered. The restaurant was spacious with its open structure. The use of wood just adds to its appeal and cool ambiance. I also spied a heater stand which they might use during really cold months or even at night! Exploring a bit, I also found out that they have function rooms on the adjacent wooden house structure - great!

I was not surprised to see and know that Koreans have invaded Baguio. It might be because of the cool weather, healthy produce, and sprawling golf courses but they sure do bring their food wherever they go :) Koreans eat korean food (period). Where there are koreans, there are authentic kimchi (period). These people are becoming more and more like migrant Chinese. I wonder when they would formalize a term like "Koreatown" since there is a "Chinatown"? I won't be surprised if that happens one day. :)

Off to the Menu. Ever since the korean bug hit Manila, I've been a loyal follower not of those telenovelas but of their simple yet tasty everyday food that is healthy as well. To the extent that I created the "battle of the most number of appetizers served (free of course)" amongst the Korean Restaurants that I had the pleasure of visiting.. and revisiting (for some). I LOVE Korean Appetizers and I can't express that well enough! Those mini plates of fishcake, kimchi, sweet potatoes, sweeted dilis, steamed greens, raddish, and so on are enough for a meal! I will reserve more of this topic in a separate entry ^_^ Where was I? Oh, Wood Nymph... :)

Let's save the good ones at the end, alright?

  1. 6 appetizers served but 4 out of six were transformed and re-transformed veggies. Almost everything is just too spicy. I've had better korean appetizers that's for sure!
  2. Staff are not too knowledgeable on the menu. I also did not see a Korean host (usually there is one or two)
  3. Their tea was not warm and they even admit it.. [me] "Kuya, pahingi ng tea" Kuya brings tea and pour to my cup [me] "Kuya, hindi talaga mainit tea ninyo?" [kuya] "Hindi, maligamgam lang" NGEEEEEK!
  4. They served us with wooden chopsticks while our korean group neighbor were served with korean silver chopsticks... hmmm... very big minus sign. We requested for our silver ones, hmph!
  5. Beef was overcooked :( their explanation.. [WN] "Frozen kasi po eh" NGEEEEK!
  1. Good variety and choices of Korean fares.
  2. Fast service. I did not hear our tummies growl while waiting *_*
  3. Dak Bulgogi was a winner :)
  4. Chap Chae (which was recommended in other blogs) was also a must-order
  5. Their BBQ orders comes with complimentary Sang-Ju (i'm not sure my spelling is right) which is the serving of fresh vegetables, fresh garlic, and the secret korean red sauce (love!)
Going up and down Baguio's steep roads, I did spied on several Korean restaurants and would give these a try the next time I visit :)

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