=Vigiland Sculptures in Frognerparken=Tusen takk to my very supportive friend in the blogosphere, Ledrake (http://ledrakenoir.wordpress.com/) for recommending Frognerparken . When I have visited Oslo last summer, the first Scandinavian country I have been, it was 15 degrees centigrade and very cold for me that I have to put on several layers of blanket at night to stop me from shivering. On my second day, we took a mini-cruise in the morning and later in the afternoon I went to see Frognerparken as friends Marija and Janina have to attend a rehearsal for their upcoming concert.Frognerparken is a public park comprises 45 hectares of land located in the Frogner area. It is where the world famous Vigeland Sculptures can be found designed by Gustav Vigeland – Norway’s best loved sculptor as Lonely Planet puts it. The statues depict a variety of “people engaging in various typical human pursuits”. There are also sculptures that are abstract.It was drizzling. There was a feeling of being immersed in the moment. I ruminate on how complex human beings are just by looking at the details, the curves and contours of each sculpture. There’s a deep seated mysteries I can’t explain.
1600 hours. 12 August 2012. Radhusplassen, Oslo
=Oblation in Diliman=
Every time I go back to Philippines, I make it a point to drop by at the Diliman campus just to breathe some fresh air, have a long quiet walk from the main entrance to meet Oblation towards the end; look around for any developmental changes and have a fish ball session afterward. That particular night was a little bit strange because the Security guard suddenly stopped us taking photos of Oble. He insisted to show him my student card. Told him, I’m an alumnus and therefore a student card is not fitting. He threatened us by way of if we didn’t stop he will call the UP Police. He sounded like a pirated CD, repeating the same tune: photographing Oblation is not allowed for security reasons. I shrug my shoulder as I find this incomprehensible and totally absurd. Here’s a snap of Oblation anyway (from UP archives):-Oblation (Pahinungod, in Filipino) is an iconic symbol of the University of the Philippines. The sculpture of a naked man was by an artist Guillermo E. Tolentino. The concept was based on Jose Rizal’s second stanza of Mi Ultimo Adios (My Last Farewell). The statue of a young man with tilted head facing the sky, arms outstretched and open hands symbolizes – an act of offering oneself, a selfless dedication and service to the nation. This has been inculcated in the molding of my mindset as a student and many times if I would sum up my university life, I’d say I have had spent more time joining the mobilization, rallies, demonstration, actively participating in the academic and community outreach program by the sorority I am part of; and working as Student Assistant than actually I had spent in the classroom. As a student activist, a furious teenager, this has been my avenue to express my dislike of the course I was taking at that time which was my parent’s choice.
1848 hours. 28 January 2011. Diliman Campus, Quezon City
=Philippines Election 2013=
Reading the news of the just concluded local Philippine election has left me in a disgruntled state. I have a strong conviction that majority of my fellows has not yet reach a political maturity as they’re always being swayed to elect showbiz personalities and the crooked ones to occupy the government seats. I am ashamed to say this because by doing so I am criticizing my own. But I can’t help my exasperation, (that I have to deviate a little bit from my usual travel blog) – a convicted plunderer ex-President wins to be a Manila Mayor; a wife of a famous boxer leads as Vice-Governor; a daughter of a popular dead actor who failed to make it to Presidency years back has made it to be no. 1 in the Senate and so on, and so forth, to the ad infinitum.Although at the outset, I may appear to be living a care free life and is intending to continue traveling the world; as a youth and deep down me, I am concerned about the future of my country and where we are heading. I don’t know but a part of me feels a pang of culpability.
1228 hours. 16 May 2013. Clementi N2C2 Office, Singapore
=Finding Answers thru Spontaneous Haircut =
Stress has been an overused word lately. I decided to cut my MRT trip back home after work and drop by to the nearby hairdresser located at my previous flat. I then look for the young Chinese lady who cut my hair last September before I go for Sabbatical leave. I learned she already returned to China. The boss referred me to the newbies. When I met their eyes, I was hesitant and had doubts. But my logic was quick: just try coz it’s getting late. I just want to trim the back by I inch, and a semi-layer on the side. I didn’t know that 1 inch to her is actually 100 centimeter? And she could not do the semi-layer. The boss came. They talk in Chinese. She told my request was not possible because my hair was blah blah blah. The supposed layer turned out zigzag. Oh God, why didn’t I listen to my intuition? I borrowed the scissor and comb and showed her how to cut side layer. I ended up cutting my own hair! But I can’t do the same at the back, it’s difficult. I decided to leave asap and just return to my regular hairdresser. I requested for a student rate . Although, if I insist not to pay, I could have done it . But I pity her for the effort. I quickly board the bus and went to Marine Parade. It was 8.30pm. I quickly get inside. And the guy said: “Sorry we’re closed by 8pm”. I said, “Oh!”. “You can come back tomorrow”. “I can’t… coz am traveling from West to East. Daily”. “Sorry, we’re closed” he said again. I was speechless. Then silence. Suddenly a voice volunteered. “Ok I will do her hair”. Final judgment: “I’m loving it ”. Her name was Julia. Told her I will come back again, and she will regularly trim my hair. Then I said Xie xie ne!
1) You’ll never go wrong when you trust your intuition; and
2) The power of going the extra mile.
Of late, I was wrestling internally with something I could not articulate. It’s just a blur vision appearing in my mind. But because of this hair thing, thank you, I finally find answers to my quests. I just thought I want to share it
2030 hours. 13 May 2013. Marine Parade, Singapore
You may ask, so what’s the connection among these topics? I thought we’re all humans with our own idiosyncrasies. After all, we’re all born naked the first time we saw the world . Thanks for being here!