Welcome to Marinduque-My Island Paradise

If this is your first time in my site, welcome! If you have been a follower, my heartfelt thanks to you, also. Help me achieve my dream, that someday, Marinduque will become a world tourist destination not only on Easter Week, but also whole year round. You can do this by telling your friends and relatives about this site. The photo above is Mt Malindig in Torrijos.
Please do not forget to read the latest national and international news in this blog . Some of the photos and videos on this site, I do not own. However, I have no intention on the infringement of your copyrights. Cheers!

Marinduque Mainland from Tres Reyes Islands

Marinduque Mainland from Tres Reyes Islands
View of Mainland Marinduque from Tres Reyes Islands-Click on Photo to link to Marinduque Awaits You

Monday, August 30, 2010

Are there Optional Clothing Beaches in Marinduque?

Love Formation in the Nude-Image from dannystewart.net

I posted a question in FaceBook recently about "clothing optional" beaches in Marinduque as follows:

Several friends here in Northern California are asking me if there are "clothing optional" beaches in Marinduque or any where else in the Philippines. I really do not know. But,I know of several secluded coves in Marinduque that you can sun bath in the nude if you wish. Any body from Marinduque or the Philippines have the answer?

I received three comments from FaceBook friends. Here are their comments.

1. David there are private beaches/cove in Torrijos or some of the islets around like south side beach of Gaspar Island in Tres Reyes. It is secluded and my foreign friends are using those areas but they should be discreet.
Isolated Cove at Gaspar Island-Plenty of Privacy for Sun Bathing

2.As long as they are discreet and not being a nuisance, I've found that you can pretty much do as you wish.(Note to everyone... No one wants to see what I've got!) Not certain about "official" nude beaches, but there are so many secluded, nearly empty stretches of beach here, and hundreds of little islets in the country, finding someplace shouldn't pose a problem.

3.Anybody may do what they want provided it is not causing public disturbance. Marinduque is still considered as conservative place with people warm and friendly, yet will react if they see nude body under the sun.

Image from the dailybeast.com
I have also heard that there are clothing optional beaches in Palawan and Boracay!

In this video are optional clothing beaches of Southern California and Santorini, Greece ( definitely not in Bellarocca Resort of Buenavista, Marinduque). Enjoy!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Santorini Island, Greece and Bellarocca Resort, Philippines

Santorini Island, Greece
The architectural design of the buildings in Bellaracco Resort, Marinduque has often been compared to Santorini, Greece. This did aroused my curiosity and so I am posting this six minute video about Santorini. View it and judge for yourself. Is the comparison valid or just plain baloney or humbug from the promoters of Bellarocca?.





The first three photos are from Santorini and the last three photos are from Bellarocca

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The Twenty Most Beautiful Places in the World


The Niagara Falls at Night as viewed from the Canadian Side

Here's a video of the 20 most beautiful places in the world. Of the 20 listed, I have visited two of them, the Grand Canyon and Niagara Falls both in North America. The other places in my wish list are Machu Picchu of Peru, the Great Wall of China and Great Barrier and Coral Reefs of Australia. However, in my retiring years, I will be happy to enjoy these places in front of my computer.

How about you? Have you visited any of the 20 places listed in this video? If you are young and healthy, but no money, then work harder to save and see the places listed in person before you are too old to travel. However, today just enjoy this video with me (background music will commence after 2.10 minutes). Comments?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

List of Type 2 Diabetes Drugs-Old and New


My wife and I are type 2 Diabetic. Having work for new drugs development at FDA for a number of years, my interest in drugs has not diminished even though I have been retired from FDA since 2002. The following article is a reference for new, and old diabetic drugs for Type 2. This is a must read of you are a type 2 diabetic.

It was compiled by Debra Manzella, R.N., former About.com Guide and updated May 2, 2010.
"It's been an exciting time for diabetes treatment - in the past year or so, several brand new medications have been approved to treat type 2 diabetes. These are not just new meds, they're completely new categories of drugs. What does that mean? These new medications work in completely different ways than the standard medications.

But does that mean that science is giving up on the old stand-by drugs? No, it doesn't. The oldies-but-goodies still do a good job, and coupled with the new kids on the block, blood glucose levels can stay even closer to normal and tighter control may be easier to maintain.

New Classifications and Medicines


DPP-4 Inhibitors: These drugs block an enzyme (DPP-4) that normally deactivates a protein (GLP-1) that keeps insulin circulating in the blood. Slowing the deactivation process helps reduce sugar production, lowering blood glucose levels.

* Januvia (sitagliptin phosphate): The first of the DPP-4 inhibitors to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Januvia is an oral medication which is taken once a day, either alone with diet and exercise, or in combination with other oral diabetes medications.

Incretin Mimetics: These mimic the action of incretin hormones which help the body make more insulin. They also slow the rate of digestion so that glucose enters the blood more slowly. People on incretin mimetics feel full longer, which reduces food intake, which helps some people lose weight while on the medication.

* Byetta (exenatide): Byetta is an injectable medication that is used in combination with other oral diabetes medications. It is not an insulin and it does not take the place of insulin. It is used for type 2 diabetes only and cannot be given with insulin. Byetta comes in a pre-filled injector pen. The dose is 5 mcg. to start, twice a day within 60 minutes prior to your morning and evening meals. Your doctor may increase the dose to 10 mcg. based on your results.

Antihyperglycemic Synthetic Analogs: These are medications that are created as synthetic versions of human substances, in this case a human hormone called amylin, which is used by the pancreas to lower blood glucose levels.

* Symlin (pramlintide acetate): Symlin is an injectable medication which is used with insulin for tighter blood glucose control. Symlin can increase the risk of severe hypoglycemia, therefore patients who are put on Symlin are selected carefully and monitored closely by their healthcare providers.

Older Classifications and Medicines

Sulfonylureas: These medications are the oldest of the oral diabetes drugs, and until 1995 they were the only drugs available for managing type 2 diabetes. Sulfonylureas stimulate the pancreas to release more insulin into the blood stream. Hypoglycemia can be a side effect of these drugs. Sulfonylureas can also sometimes stop working after a few years.

There are several "generations" of this classification of medicines. Second and third generations are more widely prescribed today.

* First generation: Orinase, Tolinase and Diabinese
* Second generation: Glucotrol (glipizide), Glucotrol XL (extended-release glipizide), Micronase or Diabeta (glyburide)
* Third generation: Amaryl (glimepiride)

Biguanides: These lower the production of glucose that is made in the liver. It also makes the body more sensitive to insulin. Cholesterol levels may be lowered as well.

* Glucophage, Glucophage XR (metformin): There is very little risk of hypoglycemia when metformin is used alone. Lactic acidosis can be a rare but serious side effect.

Alpha-Glucosidase Inhibitors: These delay the conversion of carbohydrates into glucose during digestion. This prevents blood glucose levels from peaking too high.

* Precose (acarbose)
* Glyset (miglitol)

Thiazolidinediones: Sensitizes muscle and fat cells to accept insulin more easily.

* Avandia (rosiglitazone)
* Actos (pioglitazone)

As of May 21, 2007, the FDA has issued a safety alert regarding the possibility of heart attacks or other fatal cardiovascular events when taking Avandia. Please call your physician to discuss alternative medications for managing your diabetes.

* Avandia May Cause Risk of Heart Attack and Death
* Avandia Linked to Increased Heart Attacks

Meglitinides: These stimulate insulin production when there is glucose present in the blood. If blood sugar is low, the drug does not work as well.

* Prandin (repaglinide)
* Starlix (nateglitinide)

If you are not a chemist( I am a chemist), the above names of drugs are hard to pronounce and spell, but I hope after reading this article, you did learn a little knowledge how these drugs regulate blood sugar in your body.

Also remember drugs is not everything! Watch out for your diet, exercise a little bit and avoid stress if you want to live longer in spite of your diabetes.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Enjoy Marinduque For Less than $80 A Day(For 2)


The Beach House with a 180 degree Balcony overlooking the western Marinduque Sea

You do not have to spend a fortune( Bellarocca Resort) to enjoy the beaches, hot and sulfur springs, caves and underground rivers, cliffs and coral reefs, diving or snorkeling or just relaxing in your beach house balcony over looking the coral reefs of the Amoingon Coast, in Boac, Marinduque, Philippines:
If you stay at Chateau Du Mer Beach Resort in Boac.

Note: Chateau Du Mer is a 3-bedroom HOUSE not a HOTEL Room. All rooms are either air-cooled or air-conditioned. There is a kitchen with small refrigerator and a microwave oven. There is hot water for showering. There is daily maid service. Massage therapy, manicure, haircut and transportation services are available with one day advance notice.


HOTEL rooms will cost around $20 to $40 per day depending on location and amenities in Marinduque.

A decent hotel room in Manila will cost you around $100 to $200 per day plus 12% tax. Bellarocca's Resort cheapest hotel room is about $329 per day without meals. Lodging and accommodation is a BARGAIN in Marinduque with the exception of Bellarocca. If you are not looking for night life, Marinduque is an excellent alternative to Boracay in Aklan ( http://marinduquemyislandparadise.blogspot.com)

The cost of the beach house for two is only $ 60 per day. Your food will cost you around $12 to $15 per day for two depending on the meals you desire. Transportation cost will vary from $10 to $15 depending on how far you travel from the resort. Curious? Visit http://chateaudumer.blogspot.com.

The resort is owned and operated by David and Macrine Katague, Filipino-American Retirees who spend their retirement time half of the year in Marinduque and the other half in California, USA.

Here are some of the things to DO and SEE( videos) while you are in Marinduque-My Island Paradise.
Isolated Cove at Gaspar, Tres Reyes Island

Monday, August 23, 2010

Only in the Philippines-Put a Smile in Your Face


The Tarsier-world smallest primate(Monkey) in the World. Can be found only in the Philippines in the island of Bohol.

The following article, I have read a couple of years ago. But today, a friend e-mailed it to me. I can help but smile and I decided it to share it with you my blog readers. If you have read this before, my apology. It was written by a British journalist, Matthew Sutherland, stationed in the Philippines. His observations are so hilarious but true!!! !

MATTER OF TASTE

"I have now been in this country for over six years, and consider myself in most respects well assimilated. However, there is one key step on the road to full assimilation, which I have yet to take, and that's to eat BALUT.

The day any of you sees me eating balut, please call immigration and ask them to issue me a Filipino passport. Because at that point there will be no turning back. BALUT, for those still blissfully ignorant non-Pinoys out there, is a fertilized duck egg. It is commonly sold with salt in a piece of newspaper, much like English fish and chips, by street vendors usually after dark, presumably so you can't see how gross it is.

Food dominates the life of the Filipino. People here just love to eat. They eat at least eight times a day. These eight official meals are called, in order: breakfast, snacks, lunch, merienda, merienda ceyna, dinner, bedtime snacks and no-one-saw-me- take-that- cookie-from- the-fridge- so-it-doesn' t-count.

The short gaps in between these mealtimes are spent eating Sky Flakes from the open packet that sits on every desktop. You're never far from food in the Philippines . If you doubt this, next time you're driving home from work, try this game. See how long you can drive without seeing food and I don't mean a distant restaurant, or a picture of food. I mean a man on the sidewalk frying fish balls, or a man walking through the traffic selling nuts or candy. I bet it's less than one minute.

Here are some other things I've noticed about food in the Philippines :

Firstly, a meal is not a meal without rice - even breakfast. In the UK , I could go a whole year without eating rice. Second, it's impossible to drink without eating. A bottle of San Miguel just isn't the same without gambas or beef tapa. Third, no one ventures more than two paces from their house without baon (food in small container) and a container of something cold to drink. You might as well ask a Filipino to leave home without his pants on. And lastly, where I come from, you eat with a knife and fork. Here, you eat with a spoon and fork. You try eating rice swimming in fish sauce with a knife.

One really nice thing about Filipino food culture is that people always ask you to SHARE their food. In my office, if you catch anyone attacking their baon, they will always go, "Sir! KAIN TAYO!" ("Let's eat!").

This confused me, until I realized that they didn't actually expect me to sit down and start munching on their boneless bangus. In fact, the polite response is something like, "No thanks, I just ate." But the principle is sound - if you have food on your plate, you are expected to share it, however hungry you are, with those who may be even hungrier. I think that's great!

In fact, this is frequently even taken one step further. Many Filipinos use "Have you eaten yet?" ("KUMAIN KA NA?") as a general greeting, irrespective of time of day or location.

Some foreigners think Filipino food is fairly dull compared to other Asian cuisines. Actually lots of it is very good: Spicy dishes like Bicol Express (strange, a dish named after a train); anything cooked with coconut milk; anything KINILAW; and anything ADOBO. And it's hard to beat the sheer wanton, cholesterolic frenzy of a good old-fashioned LECHON de leche (roast pig) feast.. Dig a pit, light a fire, add 50 pounds of animal fat on a stick, and cook until crisp. Mmm, mmm... you can actually feel your arteries constricting with each successive mouthful.

I also share one key Pinoy trait --- a sweet tooth. I am thus the only foreigner I know who does not complain about sweet bread, sweet burgers, sweet spaghetti, sweet banana ketchup, and so on. I am a man who likes to put jam on his pizza. Try it!

It's the weird food you want to avoid. In addition to duck fetus in the half-shell, items to avoid in the Philippines include pig's blood soup (DINUGUAN); bull's testicle soup, the strangely-named "SOUP NUMBER FIVE" (I dread to think what numbers one through four are); and the ubiquitous, stinky shrimp paste, BAGOONG, and it's equally stinky sister, PATIS. Filipinos are so addicted to these latter items that they will even risk arrest or deportation trying to smuggle them into countries like Australia and the USA , which wisely ban the importation of items you can smell from more than 100 paces.

Then there's the small matter of the purple ice cream. I have never been able to get my brain around eating purple food; the ubiquitous UBE leaves me cold.

And lastly on the subject of weird food, beware: that KALDERETANG KAMBING (goat) could well be KALDERETANG ASO (dog)...

The Filipino, of course, has a well-developed sense of food. Here's a typical Pinoy food joke: "I'm on a seafood diet.

"What's a seafood diet?" "When I see food, I eat it!"

Filipinos also eat strange bits of animals --- the feet, the head, the guts, etc., usually barbecued on a stick. These have been given witty names, like "ADIDAS" (chicken's feet); "KURBATA" (either just chicken's neck, or "neck and thigh" as in "neck-tie"); "WALKMAN" (pigs ears); "PAL" (chicken wings); "HELMET" (chicken head); "IUD" (chicken intestines), and BETAMAX" (video-cassette- like blocks of animal blood). Yum,yum. Bon appetit..

WHEN I arrived in the Philippines from the UK six years ago, one of the first cultural differences to strike me was names. The subject has provided a continuing source of amazement and amusement ever since. The first unusual thing, from an English perspective, is that everyone here has a nickname. In the staid and boring United Kingdom , we have nicknames in kindergarten, but when we move into adulthood we tend, I am glad to say, to lose them.

The second thing that struck me is that Philippine names for both girls and boys tend to be what we in the UK would regard as overbearingly cutesy for anyone over about five. Fifty-five-year- olds colleague put it. Where I come from, a boy with a nickname like Boy Blue or Honey Boy would be beaten to death at school by pre-adolescent bullies, and never make it to adulthood. So, probably, would girls with names like Babes, Lovely, Precious, Peachy or Apples. Yuk, ech ech.. Here, however, no one bats an eyelid.

Then I noticed how many people have what I have come to call "door-bell names". These are nicknames that sound like -well, doorbells. There are millions of them. Bing, Bong, Ding, and Dong are some of the more common. They can be, and frequently are, used in even more door-bell-like combinations such as Bing-Bong, Ding-Dong, Ting-Ting, and so on. Even our newly appointed chief of police has a doorbell name Ping . None of these doorbell names exist where I come from, and hence sound unusually amusing to my untutored foreign ear. Someone once told me that one of the Bings, when asked why he was called Bing, replied, "because my brother is called Bong". Faultless logic.

Dong, of course, is a particularly funny one for me, as where I come from "dong" is a slang word for well; perhaps "talong" is the best Tagalog equivalent!! !
Repeating names was another novelty to me, having never before encountered people with names like Len-Len, Let-Let, Mai-Mai, or Ning-Ning. The secretary I inherited on my arrival had an unusual one: Leck-Leck. Such names are then frequently further refined by using the "squared" symbol, as in Len2 or Mai2. This had me very confused for a while. Then there is the trend for parents to stick to a theme when naming their children. This can be as simple as making them all begin with the same letter, as in Jun, Jimmy, Janice, and Joy.

More imaginative parents shoot for more sophisticated forms of assonance or rhyme, as in Biboy, Boboy, Buboy, Baboy (notice the names get worse the more kids there are-best to be born early or you could end up being a Baboy).

Even better, parents can create whole families of, say, desserts (Apple Pie, Cherry Pie, Honey Pie) or flowers (Rose, Daffodil, Tulip). The main advantage of such combinations is that they look great painted across your trunk if you're a cab driver. That's another thing I'd never seen before coming to Manila --taxis with the driver's kids' names on the trunk.

Another whole eye-opening field for the foreign visitor is the phenomenon of the "composite" name. This includes names like Jejomar (for Jesus, Joseph and Mary), and the remarkable Luzviminda (for Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao , believe it or not). That's a bit like me being called something like "Engscowani" (for England , Scotland , Wales and Northern Ireland ). Between you and me, I'm glad I'm not.

And how could I forget to mention the fabulous concept of the randomly inserted letter 'h'. Quite what this device is supposed to achieve, I have not yet figured out, but I think it is designed to give a touch of class to an otherwise only averagely weird name. It results in creations like Jhun, Lhenn, Ghemma, and Jhimmy. Or how about Jhun-Jhun (Jhun2)?

How boring to come from a country like the UK full of people with names like John Smith. How wonderful to come from a country where imagination and exoticism rule the world of names. Even the towns here have weird names; my favorite is the unbelievably named town of Sexmoan (ironically close to Olongapo and Angeles). Where else in the world could that really be true?

Where else in the world could the head of the Church really be called Cardinal Sin?

Where else but the Philippines "!

Note: Philippines has a senator named Joker, and it is his legal name.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

List of Hypertension Drugs-Old and New


I have high blood pressure since I was 40 years old. Thanks God with medication and a healthy life style, I am still around to write this blog. As a retired Chemist involved in the development of new drugs from FDA, I still have an undiminished interest on new drug development specially in the field of hypertension drugs. The following article is written by Richard N. Fogoros, M.D., of About.com Guide and updated updated March 01, 2010.

"The following is a list of the most common drugs and drug combinations used to treat hypertension (high blood pressure). With so many approved drugs to choose from, settling on the "best" drug(s) for you will take careful collaboration between you and your doctor.

* Here are the things you and your doctor should consider when choosing the "best" drug(s) to treat your hypertension.

In this list, the (G) indicates that a generic form of the drug is available.

Diuretics

Diuretics ("water pills") increase the amount of sodium and water excreted into the urine by the kidneys. It is thought that they lower blood pressure mainly by reducing the volume of fluid in the blood vessels.

Diuretics commonly used for hypertension:

* Acetazolamide (G) - Diamox
* Chlorthalidone (G) - Thalitone
* Hydrochlorothiazide (G) - HydroDiuril, also sold as Microzide and Esidrix
* Indapamide (G) - Lozol
* Metolazone (G) - Zaroxolyn, also sold as Mykrox

Diuretics less commonly used for hypertension:

* Amiloride hydrochloride (G) - Midamor
* Bumetanide (G) - Bumex
* Ethacrynic acid - Edecrin
* Furosemide (G) - Lasix
* Spironolactone (G) - Aldactone
* Torsemide (G) - Demadex
* Triamterene (G) - Dyrenium

Beta-blockers

Beta blockers block the effect of adrenaline on the cardiovascular system, slow the heart rate, and reduce stress on the heart and the arteries.

* Acebutolol (G) - Sectral
* Atenolol (G) - Tenormin
* Betaxolol (G) - Kerlone
* Bisoprolol (G) - Zebeta, also sold as Ziac
* Carteolol (G) - Cartrol
* Carvedilol (G) - Coreg
* Labetalol (G)- Normodyne, also sold as Trandate
* Metoprolol (G)- Lopressor, also sold as Toprol
* Nadolol (G) - Corgard
* Penbutolol - Levatol
* Propranolol (G) - Inderal, Inderal LA
* Timolol (G) - Blocadren

Calcium Channel Blockers

Calcium channel blockers can reduce blood pressure by dilating the arteries and, in some cases, reducing the force of the heart's contractions.

* Amlodipine (G) - Norvasc, also sold as Caduet and Lotrel
* Diltiazem (G) - Cardizem, also sold as Dilacor and Tiazac
* Felodipine (G) - Plendil
* Isradipine (G) - DynaCirc
* Nicardipine (G) - Cardene
* Nifedipine (G) - Procardia XL, also sold as Adalat
* Nisoldipine - Sular
* Verapamil hydrochloride - Isoptin, also sold as Calan, Verelan, and Covera

Angiotensin Converting Enzyme Inhibitors

The angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (the "ACE inhibitors") can lower blood pressure by dilating the arteries.

* Benazepril (G) - Lotensin
* Captopril (G) - Capoten
* Enalapril (G) - Vasotec, also sold as Vaseretic
* Fosinopril (G) - Monopril
* Lisinopril (G) - Prinivil, also sold as Zestril
* Moexipril (G) - Univasc
* Quinapril (G) - Accupril
* Ramipril (G) - Altace
* Trandolapril (G) - Mavik

Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers

The angiotensin II receptor blockers (the "ARBs") also reduce blood pressure by dilating the arteries.

* Candesartan - Atacand
* Irbesartan - Avapro
* Losartan - Cozaar
* Telmisartan - Micardis
* Valsartan - Diovan

Other, Less Commonly Used Hypertension Drugs

* Clonidine (G) - Catapres
* Doxazosin (G) - Cardura
* Guanabenz (G) - Wytensin
* Guanfacine (G) - Tenex
* Hydralazine hydrochloride (G) - Apresoline
* Methyldopa (G) - Aldomet
* Prazosin (G) - Minipress
* Reserpine (G) - Serpasil
* Terazosin (G) - Hytrin

Combination Drugs For Hypertension

* Amiloride and hydrochlorothiazide - Moduretic
* Amlodipine and benazepril - Lotrel
* Atenolol and chlorthalidone - Tenoretic
* Benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide - Lotensin HCT
* Bisoprolol and hydrochlorothiazide - Ziac
* Captopril and hydrochlorothiazide - Capozide
* Enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide - Vaseretic
* Felodipine and enalapril - Lexxel
* Hydralazine and hydrochlorothiazide - Apresazide
* Lisinopril and hydrochlorothiazide - Prinzide, also sold as Zestoretic
* Losartan and hydrochlorothiazide - Hyzaar
* Methyldopa and hydrochlorothiazide - Aldoril
* Metoprolol and hydrochlorothiazide - Lopressor HCT
* Nadolol and bendroflumethiazide - Corzide
* Propranolol and hydrochlorothiazide - Inderide
* Spironolactone and hydrochlorothiazide - Aldactazide
* Triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide - Dyazide, also sold as Maxide
* Verapamil extended release) and trandolapril - Tarka

I have tried diuretics,calcium channel blockers and beta blockers but my personal preference are the combination drugs. Again, consult your doctor for the right drug single or combination for your needs. Watch out for your diet, everything in moderation, exercise a little bit, avoid stress and hopefully you will live longer in spite of your high blood pressure.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Top 6 Attractions of Marinduque-From Boosh News


The following article attracted my attention. It was published in Boosh News dated August 21, 2010. The author is Lilliane Cobiao-see last sentence in this report for details.

Marinduque is an island province in the Philippines most popularly known for the unique Moriones Festival. Tourists, local and foreign, flock to the island to take part in the colorful parade where locals dress in Morion costumes and masks.

The province is also infamously known for the multi-billion dollar mining industry in the 60s that resulted in an accident that brought the industry into a halt. It also caused great damage to the environment and the people of the island. A pending lawsuit with the multi-billion dollar companies responsible for the disaster, Marinduque slowly get back to its feet. While tourism isn’t a major source of their economy, it should.

Here are my take on the Top 5 Attractions of Marinduque.

(1) Scuba dive or snorkel in the clear waters of one or all of the tres reyes islands: Melchor, Gaspar, Baltazar.

(2) Explore the caves of Bathala in Sta. Cruz. Get a local guide and roam the spunky damp cave where bats and python dwell. There is a little climbing involved.

(3) Dip into the therapeutic water of the hot spring in Malbog in Buenavista. It is known to cure health condition such as migraine and skin asthma.

(4) Walk the old town of Mariduque and basked in culture with old stone houses, locally known as “bahay na bato”. There are also several old churches around the island with Cathedral of Boac being an important national historical landmark.

(5) Indulge in the luxury of Santorini inspired Bellarocca built on the Elephant Island. First class amenities such as golf, spa, yoga, infiniti pools, and various water sports are available. Finally,

(6) Shop for souvenirs or “pasalubong” at the local handicraft makers and famous uraro at Rejanos.

Marinduque Island is reachable by a number of ports and by air via Gasan Airport. There are also bus companies that brings you to Marinduque by ferry.

Lilliane Cobiao is an avid traveler, photographer, and scuba diver. If she’s not actually doing one of the 3, she is either talking or writing about them. Join her in her wanderings at http://www.wanderlass.com

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Picture is worth more than Thousand Words

We need a bigger tent
It's time for pictures that will make you smile,I hope. Have a Good Day!Images from golmao.com
A Beach Shower
The Art Class
The airplane that got lost!


Addicted to Twitter or FaceBook?

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Bayanihan-Philippines National Folk Dance Company

Dance of Lights(Pandango Sa Ilaw)
I saw my first live performance of the Bayanihan Dance Company way back in the early 1960's in Chicago, Illinois. I have never forgotten, how good and polish was this dance company performance at that time. Today, I am proud to reminisce with you via this video, a performance of the company in 2006. I hope you enjoy this video and related videos.

In case you have not heard of Bayanihan Dance Company, here is a short article from Wikipedia for your reading pleasure.

"The Bayanihan Philippine National Folk Dance Company is the oldest dance company in the Philippines. A multi-awarded company, both nationally and internationally, Guillermo Gomez Rivera has called it the "depository of almost all Filipino dances, dress and songs."
The company was founded in 1957 by Helena Z. Benitez and debuted May 27, 1958 at Expo '58, the Brussels World Fair responding to the request of then President Ramon Magsaysay. Since then they have made at least 14 major tours to Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, US and the Middle East. It has performed in 6 continents, 66 counties and 700 cities worldwide. They perform folk dances from throughout the Philippines and from other countries. The group takes its name from the Filipino word bayanihan which means working together for a common good.

In appreciation and recognition of their pioneering efforts and international success in the realm of Filipino dance, the people of the Philippines through the 10th Congress enacted R. A. 8626 declaring the Bayanihan Philippine Dance Company as The Philippines National Folk Dance Company".

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The New 7 Wonders of the World( also 7 Natural Wonders)


Here's the new 7 wonders of the world. Of the seven, I have been only to two. The Coliseum in Rome, Italy and Chichen Itza in Mexico. I have plans of visiting Great Wall of China and Machu Picchu in Peru in my younger years, but in my aging years, I am just happy to view the following video. In the related video, the old 7 wonders of the world are also listed.

Do not forget to view the related videos specifically the new 7 natural wonders of the world. Of the seven new natural wonders, the only place I have visited is the Grand Canyon in US. The Philippines Longest navigable Subterranean River in the world made it to the top 28. For detail information visit, http://www.7wonders.info.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Time for Music from our Filipino Singers/Bellagio Fountain


The video below is a duet rendition of the song made famous by Celine Dion and Josh Groban- The Prayer. There is also the Dion-Bocelli version that I have heard several times. I love this song and this is the first time I heard it sang by Dulce and Robert Sena. I hope you love this video and the related videos as much as I do.

Note that the Dion-Groban duet of this song has been heard by more than 2 million YouTube viewers. This Dulce-Robert Sena version has only been viewed by less than a thousand viewers, however, I like the Filipino singers duet better than the Dion-Groban interpretation of the song. The choral background by MADZ is excellent.



DO NOT Forget to view Church/Bocelli Duet of Time to Say Good Bye with the Fountain of Bellagio, Las Vegas as background. Macrine and I have been to Bellagio several years ago to view this fantastic and unforgettable water show while having cocktail in the Bellagio Palace Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was an experience of a lifetime.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Bizarre, Unusual and Sexy Names of Towns in US

Can Anyone tell me where is the town of Winner in the US? What state and the nearest biggest city?

The following weird, unusual and sexy names are real names of towns in the United States. For a complete lists visit www.accuracyproject.org/towns.html

Go to Hell - Hell, Michigan, of course!
Hell, Michigan
Hell Hollow, New Hampshire
Hells Corners, Ohio
Half Hell, North Carolina
Devil's Backbone, Connecticut
Devils Den, California
Devils Elbow, Missouri
Devils Lake, North Dakota
Devils Slide, Utah
Devils Tower, Wyoming
Devil Town, Ohio
Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina
Red Devil, Alaska

Get your mind out of the gutter!

Loveladies, New Jersey
Hooker, Oklahoma
Hooker Hole, Louisiana
Romance, Arkansas
Horneytown, North Carolina
French Lick, Indiana
Sweet Lips, Tennessee
Fanny, West Virginia
Busti, New York
Bird in Hand, Pennsylvania
Big Beaver, Pennsylvania
Butts, Georgia
Buttzville, New Jersey
Dicktown, New Jersey
Erect, North Carolina
New Erection, Virginia
Dickshooter, Idaho
Intercourse, Pennsylvania
Loving, New Mexico
Climax, Georgia
Conception, Missouri
Fidelity, Missouri
Manly, Iowa
Eros, Louisiana
Dickey, Maine
Fort Dick, California
Beaver, Arkansas

Heaven only knows

Angel City, Texas
Angel Fire, New Mexico
Angels Camp, California
Angeltown, Tennessee
Heavenly Hills, California
Heavenly Valley, California
Little Heaven, Delaware
Heaven Heights, Massachusetts
Convent, Louisiana
Pray, Montana

Any one knows if there is a place called "Loser" in US or anywhere else in the world?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Longest Underground River in the World-Palawan


If you plan on visiting the Philippines and have a couple of days to spare, schedule a trip to Palawan for the longest navigable subterranean river in the world. This site has been been nominated as one of the seven natural wonders of the world. However, if you are short of time, a mini version of an underground river has recently been discovered in Marinduque. Marinduque is only 30 minutes from Manila and you will save at least one day. However, do not expect the underground river in Marinduque as spectacular as the one in Palawan. Enjoy the following video.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Marinduque-Photographers' Delight


Marinduque is a photoblogger dream. The province is endowed with unspoiled white sand beaches, pristine blue waters, fringing reefs, virgin coral reefs, coves, limestone caves, meandering rivers, mountain peaks, cascading waterfalls and streams, fabled sulfur and hot mineral springs,old churches and of course beautiful sunsets. The Internet is filled with photographs of the scenic beauty of this island not only from the local professional photographers but also from amateur photographers all over the world. The province has more than six big islands popular to beach lovers, scuba divers and snorkeling enthusiasts. It has Mt Malindig known to mountain climbers and hikers. It has Bathala and Tarug Caves popular to spelunkers and just curious seekers. In one of the eight caves of Bathala, there is a resident python, believed to be enchanted. If he shows himself when you visit the caves, it is suppose to bring you good luck.
Sunset over Tres Reyes Islands- Photo from panoramnio.com
The nearest and most accessible islands from the capital town of Boac are the Tres Reyes Islands ( Islands of the Three Kings), Gaspar, Melchor and Baltazar in the town of Gasan. The local names are Laki, Pangkog and Man-nga ( see map above). These islands are located southwest of the mainland. The other three group of islands bigger in area and more populated are Polo, Maniwaya and Mongpong Islands. These are located in the Northeast part of the mainland in the town of Santa Cruz. Maniwaya's Polo Maria White Beach is being develop as an alternative to Boracay. There is a bigger island, Salamongue Island which is not as well known to the tourists and residents.. I really do not know the reason, but I believe it is not as accessible from the mainland . Moreover, it is not as developed( no electricity or running water) compared to the other islands.

One of the most popular white beach located in the mainland in the town of Torrijos is Poctoy White Beach. It is about a 70 minutes drive from downtown Boac. Poctoy White beach with Mt, Malindig as the background is the most photogenic and the most photographed scenery in the island.

Just late last year, the former Elephant Island in Lipata, Buenavista, owned privately, was renamed Bellarocca Resort Island and Spa. It has been converted to look like Santorini Island, Greece with buildings all painted in white sticking in the cliffs. From what I heard, this resort is one of the most expensive and luxurious resort in Southeast Asia. The cheapest room charges $300 per night excluding meals and other amenities. When I was in Marinduque last year, I met a few rich and famous Filipinos( businessmen, actors and actresses, TV personalities)) from Manila as well as Korean and Japanese tourists at Masiga Airport in Gasan on their way to the resort. From the resort advertisement, I know that the most expensive accommodation is a 3-bedroom villa with its own pool and jacussi charging over $ 1000 per night without meals.

Dong Ho, Oggie Ramos, Ferdz Decena, Allan Barredo, Sydney Snoeck and Dennis Villegas are some of the photographers that I know who have photo blogs about Marinduque. Their pictures are beautiful, unique and mesmerizing. It is worth your time to visit their photo blogs sites. Looking at their photographs of Marinduque, its Tradition and Culture will surely make you proud of the beauty of our island paradise.
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