Farewells

Today is my last day here in Dubai. I would love to say, for now but I don’t want to speak to soon.

When my dad surprised me and came to pick me up and take me home with him, I wasn’t sure what to feel. It was on my plans anyway, but it came 2 weeks earlier than scheduled. I had plans, I had booked dates, I had some more things to take care of. ‘

Packing up 2 years of my life here in Dubai wasn’t really hard to do – there isn’t much I have to take and if need be, I could leave it all here and just take one full luggage. It is more of the farewells and the goodbyes that sucks the life out of me.

In a span of 2 days, I have managed to get myself extremely weak and lost for a plan, lost of direction. i just wanted to see friends and people I have been with in this time and spend whatever time I have left with them, although torn as well to be leaving my dad alone in the house doing nothing.

I guess one thing that I realized is that you will never be ready to leave. There will never be a perfect time to do so, and regardless of how much you plan it, you will never, ever be able to say “goodbye” completely.

I pray that plans become concrete and actually happen. I pray that things get better, and I be able to come back soon.. but until then, farewell. 😦

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Of friends and trials

Funny when you reach a point in your life that you are at your lowest, how you truly discover who the real ones are and those who are just there, well, for their own reasons.

If you are in a bad situation, and have actually approached all of those you consider your friends and not a single one of the capable ones is willing to help, who do you turn to? They say do unto others what you would like others do unto you. This is specifically true, proven, “others” will do the same for you, not the ones you expect to.

Friends, there should be a clearer definition of friends. Friends are those who are actually there beside you in moments when you really have nothing and no one, and those who don’t desert you, those who will never judge and try their hardest to understand. Agreeing is one thing, but understanding is another. If you have someone who understands you and your actions regardless of what they may be, and will be willing to help you until the end, then you have found yourself a true friend. Steer away from selfish people, who only think about themselves especially in moments where you doubt yourself.

There are times when I just want to stop thinking and make like a ball and stay in one corner where no one will ask me what my plans are, and isolate myself from the universe… but if I do that, the world won’t stop would it? My responsibilities won’t stop with me. It’s always easier to quit and give up, but what good will that do?

So, I pray. I pray for strength and for clarity. I pray for help. I pray that somewhere out there something is just going to come and happen that will make things better. That is our best weapon, faith in prayer.

Be wise, be kind. Eventually tables will turn, and you will be reaping rewards of being kind.

 

Crossroads, again?

Am I too old to be in a crossroad? Exactly how many years or how many times can one person be at a crossroad in life?

I’m 27, and I think I have once again come to a point where I ask myself, what do I really want to do?

Quite oddly, I have no answer. I have been racking my brains out for the past two hours, thinking of an answer to hopefully aide me in planning my next steps beyond this Dubai adventure I am in.

I used to want to be a lawyer or a teacher. I could still pursue either, but do I really want that now? Maybe yes, but also, maybe no.

I have always had a dream of opening a clothing boutique. I used to do online selling and actual off-site selling and it did get me to places, but I stopped. Don’t ask me why but I just did, and I regret it. Do I still want to do it? Yes, but it’s scaring me as this is a huge risk and I’m not entirely sure where to start now with all the existing big names already. I don’t even design, Lord knows how awful I am at drawing! I just have a flair for what is nice and a love for making people feel good about themselves. That was the edge before. I have an opportunity to do it again now, however my location for a would – be boutique is not ideal, so I am quite skeptical.

I wanted to take Fashion School – they have a Marketing course and that can work for me, if I decide to pursue the clothing store. I also thought of enrolling in Fashion Styling and then use my connections to be someone’s stylist. Then I can also re-train and take more makeup classes. Costly!!! Hard work, but interesting enough.

I also think about applying in other countries… Asian perhaps, maybe those will work better since it’s nearer the Philippines and I can just come home anytime I wanted, with all the seat sales and whatnot. It still seems like a pretty good idea, maybe I will try and explore to see if I get anything and then try? But that also leads me away from another thing I want to do:

I want to come home. Home, to my homeland and be with my family. I will be frank in saying that I enjoy being on my own, although constantly in check with my family, I still enjoy the independence and the freedom that comes with being far. I mean, working here in Dubai does have its rewards and setbacks, and it can get really tiring especially knowing that you really wouldn’t stay here for good. I love the city, but I do not want to grow old here. I want to be with my family to help out in our businesses and of course, we’re too family oriented to even be apart, but after being away for about 2 years now, I cannot fully imagine what it’s going to be like being under my parents’ watch again, having to report to them every so often, explaining where I want to go or who I will be with. Eek.

Oh, and another thought came to me when I was asking myself about two hours back about wanting a dance / fitness studio. That’s interesting but the money involved, not even talking about just the investment required but the profit is just not tempting enough for it to be the next adventure.

Then I started looking at probably taking higher education, get a Master’s degree or something, but on what? Marketing? Events (do they even have that)? Another possibility, but also costly.

Or maybe I could stick to what I do now and put together an events organizing team. I have friends in the industry who are just so good it’s crazy – maybe we can do those together. That will be lucrative, given the talent of the people I work with!

I have a lot of ideas in my head and I am just too confused to even plan something. It can get so frustrating to want to do a lot of things and then wake up again the next day realizing you haven’t started anything – heck not even decide on anything just yet. I envy those who are brave enough to actually say what they want and leave everything behind and just do it.

For now, I will pray. I will pray for a clearer mind and a stronger self, to leave what isn’t working for me behind and begin to do something worthwhile in my life. I’m 27!!!!!

 

 

Rambles.

I pray you have the courage to walk away from something that’s probably not doing you right, from something that slowly kills you every single time as you keep sending a message that doesn’t come across. I pray that you be given strength to realize your worth and actually take notice of it, and not let anyone make you feel so worthless.  Is that really what love is about?

I pray that one day you be strong enough to make people who unconsciously take you for granted realize what they will be missing when they lose you, before it gets late. I pray that one day you meet someone or if you already have met that someone, for things to work out well. Nothing is perfect, nothing will ever be perfect, but there is a difference in both parties trying. 

I wish one day you learn to realize that you can have something great and something actually worth all your efforts and your tears. One who knows what they have and value it. Someone who will always be on their toes for fear of losing you, and not someone so complacent to not see that you may always decide to leave. 

I look forward to the day you look at someone and can simply tell them, it would be an honor to have your heart broken by that person, because whatever suffering or tears you shed is always replaced with a tantamount love you never knew of, all along thinking you’ve felt every single kind there is.

I wish one day you’d notice how open your eyes have been to see the realities which you try so badly to ignore.

I wish one day you’d laugh this off and just have the person prove you wrong.

Whimsical

Looking at my blog tells me how hectic my past months has been to not be able to post a single entry. Just a quick update – since I started working here in Dubai June of 2014 — officially September, and now being August 2015 – I have been through 2 different employers, and now I just started a new job.

WHAT. Aren’t contracts supposed to be for about 2 years or so? Am I so fickle-minded that I hop from one company to another so quickly? Not so much. There are reasons that  forced me to do this but if anything, I would like to hope that the new company allows me to stay for the duration a normal employee should be.

So it’s been what, 10 months since my last post. How has it been? It’s been a whirlwind of adventure I must say. Have I finally been able to settle down or adjust to the life that is, Dubai?

My mom would always do a check on my things – like she keeps an inventory of the stuff I own and the new ones I post. I think I got over the shopping part quickly – which should be a good thing, considering how much damage sales here and there that never end and will surely lure any shopaholic bring. I have been to brunches, parties and so much more. I’d say I’m doing pretty okay.

It still is a challenge most of the time, but with any other place or person who flies off to a different place and start anew- it will always be difficult. It will be your friends and the people you meet who will constantly make up for the loneliness one can feel – but sometimes really, it’s never completely enough.

I am stoked for October – I’ll finally see my parents. Just the thought of spending 7 days with them makes me teary – eyed. God knows how much I miss my family and that though we constantly communicate, nothing beats actual presence. I have been constantly fighting with some of my siblings, or been talking but it still doesn’t change the fact that I miss them too much to even bother. I just keep on looking for new places — the non-touristy much stuff that I can take them to when they get here, and of course, sacrificing or saving up on stuff to be able to show them around comfortably when they come.

That’s about it. Doing this post has given me an hour’s worth of something to do and now less bored, off to do chores! #buhayofw

PS. It is hard and can get really lonely, but you learn – and that’s the most important thing.

On Independence

It’s late and I have nothing on my plate. Tonight is one of those rare nights where I got to go out and have a good laugh.

Now i’m back to my daily stupor.

I chose to work away from home for the obvious reason of being able to earn more, and hopefully be able to save. One thing I know though is that I will eternally be missing my family back home.

Things will probably be better if I had someone here whom I can just talk to any time of the day, or someone to share silly days with. People see a different side of me everyday, but heck go ahead and spend days with me and you’ll get to see. After all, when the day has passed and you have no one, it tends to become really lonely… Ah, utter freedom.

Independence is a word people often take for granted. Sometimes people wish for so much independence and regret once it comes to them. We are often caught off guard and more often than not, go crazy.

It’s a wonderful thing but sometimes it can also be nasty. I guess it all depends on your values and on how stable you are with yourself. Faith, and resistance are two really valuable things. Sometimes we have to remind ourselves to remain grounded otherwise we tend to hurt people we leave behind.

Being alone in a foreign country is hard. I have always been independent, but right now, I wish I weren’t. I miss home.

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3 Months of Waiting

So, it took me 3 months before updating this blog as it took me 3 months to be able to go back here in Dubai. It actually reached a point when I even told myself I won’t be able to go back anymore and just go back to working in the Philippines.

I was lucky to have gone home over the course of time I waited for my employment visa. It wasn’t the company’s fault being that there were a lot of things that happened in between but nonetheless – having been back for 3 weeks already, I’d say it looks promising enough for me to confirm that it is worth the wait. 🙂 So far, everything has been great.

For those planning to apply here, it can be quite a tedious process and make take a while, a certain amount of money and so on but hey if you land in something you’ll actually enjoy — then yeah go for it.

A few tips for those trying their luck:

1. Best to be with a relative. If you can find a relative or a friend where you can stay at for the duration of your application, then go for it. It will save you a lot of time and hopefully money when you do.

2. Send out dozens or hundreds of your application early, preferably between 8 am to 12noon. We all know how it works, there are thousands of applications being received every day coming from all over the globe – so aside from making sure your CV is catchy and impressive, make sure you stay on top of the emails.

3. Explore new industries. If you’re like me and it’s your first time working outside of your home country, don’t forget that your experiences are basically of no value. Yes skills count, and they do read it but end of the day, it doesn’t really count for much. You’ll be surprised to enjoy an industry you’ve never dreamt of working in, ergo, me. 🙂

4. Connections. It is given that in this life, we network with people and use them. LOL. For lack of a better phrase, that is. We meet people, connect with them and eventually they are able to help us out. Exhaust all means, befriend everyone you are connected to to help you out and who knows, it might work for you.

5. Patience, and patience, and more patience. For some, they get hired via applying while they’re still back in their home countries. Most go on tourist visa and apply while they’re here – since normally one is given until 60 days. For some it even takes longer. Nothing is ever definite, but if you want it enough then waiting wouldn’t be a problem.

6. Research, learn, discover. 🙂 Nothing much to elaborate on.

Hope this helps a bit. Feel free to ask! 🙂

When Friends Meet

Having been here in Dubai for a month now, one would think I have met a lot of people already, well, I haven’t. I have friends around but we never really get the chance to bond. Yesterday though, exactly that day I am celebrating my 1st month here, I met up with a long time friend at Dubai mall to do quite a number of stuff. This was also the day we went to get our personalized Nutella jars (which explains the same outfit). Read about that here. She’s celebrating her birthday in three days and since she lives in Abu Dhabi (a different city), she decided to do a pre – celebration here in Dubai.

First stop was the nail spa session (review on that soon!), followed by a visit to the brow bar of Benefit inside Sephora. You can try visiting Sephora branches and see if they have it near you if you’re tired of the usual threading for your brows! It costs 80AED, though I suggest you either call or drop by to book your slot in advance since they’re normally packed. Happy that the “brow master” was a Kabayan (we call other Filipinos that) so we got a free mini-makeover too!

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Posing before the whole waxing and tinting happened, with Kabayan inside Sephora

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After the “make-over”

We also saw “The Other Woman” – really hilarious, it actually gave us both “life pegs” and a whole new desire to go to Bahamas! If you haven’t seen it, run to the nearest cinema – it’s worth your money! 🙂
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Up next was the highlight of the day: cooking “Filipino” dinner for AIESECers all over the world. We made a mad dash to the grocery for the ingredients and as soon as we were able, we started making the dishes. I don’t have photos of the food though. We prepared Chicken Adobo, Adobo flakes, Beansprouts with Tofu and Turon (baked banana).

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Preparing ingredients…

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An incomplete group shot

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Here’s everyone!

The Nutella Experience

Nutella is celebrating it’s 50 years of creating good memories. I’ve seen their display at the mall a few days back but it was only on their last day that I actually went and saw what they’re doing. Now, Nutella has been a household staple ever since I can remember and I was more than happy to be there, celebrating their 50th birthday! Read along as I share with you the Nutella experience.

We got to the exhibit at around 4:30pm, and since we wanted whatever it was they were giving away, we fell in line. Boy was it long. Everything starts with your Nutella story. Best story wins 500AED! Follow the photos!

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This is where you get your paper and write your story!

On their paper, you have to write your name and mobile number, as well as your “Nutella story”. Then you line up and wait for your turn. The line was really long, and I had the chance to take photos of the venue, and of us with some other people using my selfie pod which I got back home. It took us over an hour and a half for our turn and by this time, we knew how to sing “Happy birthday” in different languages.

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my Nutella story

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This is us with Nutella man, trying to entertain people around us!

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Waiting…

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Getting bored now..

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an hour later, with our new found bored friends. haha!

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more photos of the set-up

Finally, it was our turn. You just give out some details, hand your story, and then you have to sing depending on the number of jars your group has. We had two so we sang “happy birthday” in Italian and then in German.

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my friend Denise, giving out her details

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and mine!

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remember, you have to sing along to this! 🙂

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Denise with the screen. haha!

After singing, you get your “PERSONALIZED NUTELLA JARS”. This is what made it all worth it! 🙂 One jar filled with Nutella goodness, with your name on it! Love this!

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YAY!!

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NICOLE Nutella. Want one?

All in all, if I had to do it again, I would but I wish there’d be a better and faster process. The whole thing took us about an hour and a half! At any rate though, I have to thank my friend who I met up with for wanting to get in line so bad, I agreed!

Happy 50 years, Nutella! Keep making delicious spreads! 🙂

Ready?

Well, hello! I finally have decided to start this blog. I have been in Dubai for a few weeks now trying to see if i’m going to be successful here, leaving behind 25 years of my life back home in the Philippines.

I initially wanted to post an introductory video but haven’t been so successful in recording. I’m still trying to wrap myself around this idea for I’ve mostly just kept a personal blog, for ranting about the most ridiculous things there is to rant about, so I do hope you bear with me and please be patient! I’ll mainly be talking about the lifestyle here, survival tips (ha!), my fitness journey and basically to show you around the city as I go along in discovering it!

Wish me luck as I am headed out to another adventure this afternoon. I can’t wait to start sharing things with you!

 

*shameless plug* Do follow! I promise to try and make it as exciting for you as it is now for me!