Saturday, August 13, 2022

Rainy Afternoon With David Guison

I finally met David Guison in person and I even attended his “Blog Photography and Styling Workshop” which he conducted together with Lissa Kahayon. It is part of the Canon PhotoSkwela series and it was held yesterday at SM City North EDSA Annex.


David Guison and Lissa Kahayon discussed how they started blogging and showed us their previous pictures. You can see their transformation from their simple style (and simple pictures) to their current achievements in the blogging and fashion industry. David Guison also showed us his previous gadgets that he used in taking pictures before. These gadgets include an old Nokia cellphone, a Canon digicam and his DSLR, a Canon 1100D (similar to mine!). Now that inspires me to come up with brilliant photos as well. He’s definitely a great photographer!

Here are some of the cardinal rules of blogging that they shared. I love their PowerPoint presentation by the way. It’s very artistic.

  • Give back (to your readers) – This can be in the form of blog contests and give-away.
  • Quality (of posts) over quantity – It is better to have few interesting posts than lots of uninteresting ones.
  • Value your audience – Take some time to reply to comments that you’re receiving in your blog.
  • Be humble
  • Never overshare (personal photos or information)
  • Research plus incorporate your own
  • Get your daily dose of inspiration
  • Be patient (for blog traffic to increase)
  • Be consistent – The most important thing in blogging is to blog regularly
  • Be responsible (for your posts)
  • Keep it simple but catchy – Pertaining to blog names and titles. Lissa Kahayon’s blog is Scene Stealer while David’s blog is simply named DG Manila. They also mentioned the importance of branding your blog by having your own logo
  • Keep it interesting
  • Write about what you know

They also discussed the advantages of blogging (like having a job) as well as the disadvantages. They even provided personal anecdote about some of the hate comments that they received and how they took it positively. David Guison also mentioned some of his favorite bloggers: Ponyhunter, Edric Chen, and Tricia Gosingtian.

They even answered the question on which platform would best host their blog. It doesn’t matter, according to them, whether you’re using Blogger, Wordpress, or Tumblr but it’s advisable for a blogger to have their own .COM website. It makes the blog more professional. David Guison started with Tumblr while Lissa Kahayon finds Blogger easy to use. They now have their own .COM sites.

I learned a few more things about David Guison and his works from this seminar. I learned that he also wrote and took some pictures for Inquirer, Ford, Bench, Century Tuna, SM, Multiply, Yahoo, Ray-Ban, among others.

Aside from watching David Guison the whole time (he’s indeed gorgeous), I was able to get some tips on how to improve my current blogs. They also gave some tips on Styling like:

  • Examine what you have (in your closet)
  • Work with what you have and challenge yourself
  • Your personal style is a mix of your tastes, inspirations, aspirations and lifestyle
  • Get inspiration, re-invent then own the look
  • Experiment, take risks, be creative
  • Plan, strategize
  • Exude confidence!
  • There is nothing wrong with repeating clothes
  • Look the part, play the part
  • The way you project yourself and how you want others to perceive you

I had a wonderful time attending the workshop of David Guison and Lissa Kahayon and I can definitely say that I’m a follower. Thank you Canon Philippines for having them as one of your Ambassadors. It’s definitely worth it. Thank you also to Greenwich for the delicious pizza!


Sunday, October 4, 2020

A New Blog!

I’m creating a 2nd el toro bumingo blog. The reason? I already consumed my free 15 GB storage from Google that contains all the images I used on the 1st el toro bumingo blog over the years. I am using the full size of the pictures straight from the DSLR and it’s probably the reason why the 15 GB got full. I also had that blog since 2011 and contains a lot of pictures from my #LocalTravel.

Quezon Memorial Circle

I bike my way to Quezon Memorial Circle yesterday. It’s almost 40 kilometers (back and forth) from my place in Pasig City. It’s my latest #LocalTravel this quarantine season and I did it via bicycle.

I still have tons of backlog from my 2019 travel that I want to share with you guys. Even if I’m working from home since March 2020 due to Covid19, I still haven’t published my photos of:

  • Mangaldan, Pozorrubio, Laoac, Binalonan, and Urdaneta in Pangasinan
  • Alaminos City (where a lot of ancestral houses are located), Bolinao, Lingayen, Binmaley, San Carlos City and Malasiqui  also in Pangasinan
  • Naujan and Calapan in Mindoro Oriental
  • Puerto Galera, San Teodoro, Victoria, Pinamalayan City, Roxas and Bulalacao also in Mindoro Oriental
  • Boracay, Malay Town, Kalibo, New Washington and Balete in Antique
  • Piat Town in Cagayan
  • Callao Cave (Penablanca) in Cagayan
  • Tuguegarao in Cagayan
  • Balloon Festival in Carmona, Cavite – March 2020 (before the Enhanced Community Quarantine)
  • General Community Quarantine (QCQ) Travels – via bicycle – to Cainta, Rizal
  • Trip to Baras
  • Trip to Tondo
  • Trip to Quezon Circle

I’m hoping before the year end, I am up to date with my travel photos. It’s not much but I still love #LocalTravel

I hope that you’ll support me on this new blog the same way as you supported the 1st el toro bumingo blog.

Let’s take care of each other and travel safe this pandemic era.

Saturday, September 19, 2020

Dagupan City (in Pictures)

It’s been a year since I last posted pictures on this blog. There was an issue with the software I’m using to blog (Open Live Writer) and it was only recently fixed with the release of version



I hope I could catch up on posting pictures of my trips locally. I have ample time to do so since I’ve been in quarantine since March 2020. I only travel by public transportation – tricycle, bus, jeepney – and since it’s suspended, my local travel is also on hold.

Here are some pictures of Dagupan I took last year, 2019 B.C. (Before Corona)



























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Saturday, September 28, 2019

Pangasinan Trip 2019

A few weeks ago, I decided to take a 2-day trip to the province of Pangasinan. It was my 2nd time, the first being in the Bangus Festival a few years ago. This year, I started with Pangasinan. The bus I took was Solid North and we left the EDSA station around 2:00 AM.

Before 6:00 AM, I was already at Dagupan City. I was able to take a picture of its church at daybreak. Recently, I’ve been taking pictures of the town’s Poblacion (city center) including the main church, the municipal or city hall, the public market, the public park, Rizal’s monument, ancestral houses and Jollibee stores.

From Dagupan, I took a jeep to the nearby town of Mangaldan. Same routine – walk about the Poblacion, take a picture of the main church, plaza, municipal hall, Rizal’s monument, Jollibee store and some ancestral houses. Then I’m off to the next town of Manaoag, Pangasinan.

From Manaoag, I travelled to Pozzorubio, Pangasinan. It was already afternoon when I decided to go to Pozzorubio and there were no longer jeeps plying to the town. Luckily there’s a tricycle terminal. In Pozzorubio, I did exactly the same thing – go to the town proper (Poblacion), visit the main church, some ancestral houses, municipal hall, Rizal’s monument and public park. I had difficulty finding the Pozzorubio Public Market.

Travelling from town to town is pretty simple especially if the town/province is from Spanish-era period. The design is simple – the church is usually the center of the town. In front of it is usually the Plaza and just a few meters would be the Munisipyo (Municipal Hall) and the Palengke (Public Market). Ancestral houses are usually located around the church. The closer your house is to the chuch, the more prominent your family is. A monument to Rizal is almost, always, present in the Plaza.

From Pozzorubio, I took another jeep to Urdaneta but I stopped by at the crossroads to Laoac and Binalonan. I took a jeep and went to Laoac, which is a a very quiet and small town. The church is simple and the municipal hall is being renovated. I also can’t find the public market of Laoac but there’s a plaza. From Laoac, I rode the Manaoag-Binalonan jeepney.

There’s a Jollibee and McDonalds by the way at the crossroads. The town of Binalonan is also quiet. I was surprised that they have GrabTrike colored green. It’s probably a collaboration of the town to the riding company and it’s applaudable. Binalonan has wide streets around the town hall (municipal hall). There are some ancestral houses near the church and it’s lovely to walk around the Poblacion.

Around 5:00 PM I’m back at the crossroads and rode another jeep towards the City of Urdaneta, Pangasinan. I’m surprised that the church of Urdaneta is not as grand (or big) as in other cities. It’s like Cabanatuan or any other big city in the province. I decided to sleep over in this city but I had difficulty finding accommodation via the Agoda app. Eventually I asked a tricycle driver to take me to the nearest, least expensive inn.
I have visited 7 towns today.

Day 2

I left Urdaneta City early in the morning. I took a bus to Dagupan City and from there, I took another bus to Alaminos City. I had breakfast in one of the town’s ancestral houses repurpose into a cafeteria (the 1st fllor). I was surprised at the sheer number of ancestral houses in this city especially along the street going to the Hundred Islands Park. It was rainy when I reached this town so there were no boats going to the Hundred Islands.

Alaminos City both has Jollibee and McDonalds. I can’t find Rizal’s monument but instead, there’s a monument for Andres Bonifacio in front of the church. From Alaminos City, I took a grueling 2 hour jeepney ride to the northern-most town of Bolinao.

Bolinao is a bit chaotic since the public market extend to the area in front of the municipal hall. Rizal is depicted along with other National Heroes. The church of Bolinao is awesome with its painting on the ceiling. Almost all popular stories of the Bible and about the life of the Virgin Mary is depicted in the ceiling. It was one of the most beautiful churches I’ve seen visited.

Of all the towns I’ve visited in Pangasinan, only Bolinao has a group of vendors selling the town’s unique product – bamboo (rice) cake. It’s like our local suman but instead of being wrapped in banana leaves, it’s cooked in bamboos. It comes with a very sweet syrup similar to that found in Baguio. I commend the local government of Bolinao for marketing a unique product of the town. I hope all other towns will follow their example.

From Bolinao, I took the Bolinao Express bus and went to the capital of Pangasinan province – Lingayen. I was able to take some photos of the towns along the way – Bani, Sual and Labrador. Lingayen is a huge city. Rizal’s monument here is remarkable. There’s Jollibee as well. From the church of Lingayen, I took a tricyle to the Provincial Capitol grounds. The complex is huge and has a lot of trees. It gives the feel of being in Baguio.

From Lingayen, I took a jeep to the quiet town of Binmaley. It’s another small and quiet town. I love the feel of Binmaley. The church is unique because it is surrounded by statues of the Virgin Mary with some of her famous titles. Too bad both the church of Binmaley and the Museum of Binmaley were closed during my visit (Saturday morning). From the statue of a fisherman at the town plaza and from the wide ricefields in town, I can say Binmaley is a farming and fishing town.

My next stop was the city of San Carlos. There’s no direct jeepney route to San Carlos City. I rode the jeep to Dagupan but took off at a tricycle station for San Carlos. I had my lunch here. The city is huge as well. There’s a Rizal Park near the church. The City Hall is right across the street. The public market is not in the vicinity. There’s a Jollibee San Carlos and this city is where publick transportation are located. From San Carlos City you could visit other towns to the West side of Pangasinan. I decided to go to Malasiqui.

Malasiqui is another quiet town. The town hall, church, Rizal Park, and public market are all adjacent to each other. There are a lot of buses coming from Dagupan en route to Manila. I left Malasiqui around 4:00 PM. By 10:00 PM I was back in Manila.

I visited 6 towns today for a total of 13 towns in 2 days. I would post more pictures of the towns I've mentioned here. I would also love to visit the province of Quezon next.

Trip to Mindoro and Aklan

Day 1
I was with my aunt and kuya when we visited Mindoro. It was my first time to visit the island and the birthplace of my aunt – Naujan, Oriental Mindoro.

Our journey started at JAM Liner station in Taft Avenue near Buendia. We left Pasig around 3:00 AM and was at the bus station around 4:00 AM. We left the bus terminal around 4:30 AM to Batangas Port. The signage on the bus says CALABARZON Batangas Port. We arrived around 6:20 AM and missed the Fast Craft (6:00 AM) bound to Calapan Port. We opted for the 7:00 AM RORO ship from Star Ferries – the Starlite Annapolis.

It was my first time to ride a Roll-On Roll-Off (RORO) ship – the one that carries both passengers and vehicles (trucks, bus, cars). The fare was around P400 with P30 terminal fee (which is free for Senior Citizens). We left Batangas Port around 8:00 AM and arrived at Calapan Port around 11:00 AM. It was raining due to storm Falcon (who’s already outside the PAR but is affecting the Habagat). From the Port of Calapan, we rode a tricycle to the town proper – around P100 fare. We ate lunch at Chowking Calapan before riding a jeep to the quiet town of Naujan. The jeepney terminal is just besides the public market.

We left Calapan City around 11:30 AM and arrived there about 12:30 PM. My aunt is very happy to be able to visit her birthplace. We visited the Bonifacio Monument at the heart of Poblacion, Naujan as well as the Municipal Hall. We would love to visit the Simbahang Bato but it’s about 8 kilometers away from the town center, by tricycle. We decided to head back to Calapan City.

I convinced my aunt to ride the Fast Craft at Puerto Galera on their way back to Batangas Port. It was both our first time to be at Puerto Galera. From Calapan City, we rode a jeep. It was a 1 and a half ride from the capital of Mindoro Oriental (Calapan City). We left around 3:30 PM and navigate a route that is zigzag like a trip to Baguio. It seems that we passed a mountain range before arriving at Poblacion, Puerto Galera.

However, a local tricycle driver and female personnel from the municipal hall informed us that the 6:00 PM Fast Craft trips were cancelled due to heavy rains brought about by Habagat and Typhoon Falcon. They recommended to spend the night at one of the resorts near the beach. We rode a tricycle and headed to White Beach Resort. A room with 2 queen size bed were offered to us at P1,200/night from the usual P1,500. It was right beside the famous White Sand Beach of Puerto Galera. After a dinner of Beef Caldereta and Nilaga, we doze off to dreamland.

Day 2

We woke up early the next morning and left the resort at 4:00 AM. We went to Balatero Pier (the one nearest White Beach Resort) to catch a Fast Craft but all trips were cancelled by the Coast Guard. According to the personnel from the 3 shipping lines – Fast Craft can’t dock at the Batangas Port due to heavy rain / waves. It was 6:00 AM. There was a 9:00 AM trip from Calapan City back to Batangas Port via RORO but I decided to stay behind and just spend the day at Puerto Galera and nearby towns.

I explored Poblacion, Puerto Galera and visited the nearest church, municipal hall and market. Poblacion already have 7-11 and other establishments that can be seen at a barangay in Manila. There’s even a Xentro Mall being constructed nearby. Instead of visiting Muelle Pier and Sabang Beach, I decided to go south again and visit the next town.

I stopped by Tamaraw Falls which is located right beside the street after a 30-minute ride from Puerto Galera. It’s a small waterfall with a grotto and a park. Nothing fancy but it’s worth the stop.  I rode a jeep again and drop off by the San Teodoro Public Market. Their municipal hall is being constructed and there’s a church dedicated to the Immaculate Conception nearby. It was a quiet town.

I went back to Calapan City and stopped by the City Library and the Sto Nino Church. I then rented a tricycle to bring me to the Capitol Building, the City Hall, and Rizal Monument (he’s sitting and writing something on a desk).

Since we already visited Naujan, I rode a jeep to Victoria instead. It was about 2-hour ride from Calapan City. It’s also a quiet town like San Teodoro. I visited the church, public market and municipal hall. I didn’t see a Rizal Monument but instead, it was _ that has a statue in front of the new building. I also learned that there are no more jeepney route from Victoria to the other towns south. A local guy from the nearby jeepney terminal informed me that the route “died” a few years ago and was replaced by van (UV express). I rode a van from Victoria to Pinamalayan City.

Pinamalayan City is a busy place. I dropped off by the National Highway and rode a tricycle going to the town proper (near the sea front). The streets are wide, and it has all the establishments from Jollibee to Metrobank. There are ancestral houses in front of the City Plaza, which is huge and has a very interesting mural dedicated to the revolution/heroes of 1896. There’s a Rizal Monument with a rainbow bridge behind.

I went back to the Pot of Gold monument at the National Highway and rode a van to Roxas town. It’s another quiet town but they have a Jollibee. I took a photo of the Sto Nino Church, which is a beautiful church, and some ancestral houses nearby. Some are being sold. There’s a Ceres Terminal near the public market and I was tempted to book a ticket to Cubao (I’m sure it will be another RORO ride at Calapan City to Batangas). I already went to the municipal hall where a statue of Rizal is located.

A staff approached me and asked if I’m doing a documentary. He said I should seek a permit. I told him I’m promoting the town on my blog – but if they want that, then I won’t take any more pictures. This is the first time that I was ever approached by a municipal stop and ask to get a permit (to take a picture of a public building). I guess there’s a political issue in this town.

Roxas has a port that offers RORO trip to Caticlan in Aklan (Panay Island). Since I had a bad experience with the customer service of Starlite Ferries (who won’t reply in time when asked about their trips), I decided to take a RORO at the next town of Bulalacao.

The trip to Bulalacao from Roxas is very similar to my trip from Calapan to Puerto Galera – zigzag road but with a view of the sea. It was almost 6 o’clock when I reached the sleepy town of Bulalacao. The van took us straight to Bulalacao Port. It won’t accept ticket reservation until 7:00 PM so I rent a tricycle for P60 to take me to the town hall, church and market. They have no Rizal Monument at their plaza.

Bulalacao Port is constructed with the help of the Philippine Port Authority (PPA). The trip to Caticlan Port is roughly P460 with a P30 terminal fee. The RORO is new and is operated by FastCat. Our departure time is 10PM so I had some time to eat, take a bath and sleep at a nearby cafeteria.

Day 3

It’s almost 1:30 AM when our RORO reached the port of Caticlan. We left Bulalacao Port around 10:00 PM last night. Compared to the RORO ship we rode in Batangas Port, which has sleeping bunker beds, this RORO ship from FastCat only has seating area at the top most deck (Economy). Even though it’s not fully occupied, I can’t lie on the bench because it has “separators”.

There’s a nearby 7-11 where I had a quick breakfast. The staff asked me a few questions as part of a survey. He asked where I came from and where am I headed to. I initially plan on tour the towns of Aklan but since I’m already in Caticlan, I might as well visit the world-famous Boracay Island even just for a few hours.

There are no boats in Caticlan Jetty Port that is heading to Boracay. I was advised that due to Habagat, the boats are in the nearby port of Tabon. It’s about a kilometer away from Caticlan according to Waze. I decided to walk towards Tabon Port. After the 6 months rehabilitation of Boracay, one of the changes they made in making a trip to Boracay is that you must show a proof of hotel accommodation. I used the Agoda app to find myself the cheapest hotel/inn in Boracay. I found one for a dormitory type (6 beds in 1 room, double-deck) for around P400 located in Station 2.

Since it’s before 6:00 AM, the price of the ferry doubled to P50/person. The environmental fee is P75 and terminal fee is P25. My co-passengers were mostly Korean (or Chinese). The boat trip was about 15 minutes to Boracay Jetty Port. There were e-Tricycles there, but I decided to hire a habal-habal for P100.

I was at the inn along Boracay-Bulabog Road around 4:00 AM. I toured the area and was able to visit Stations 1-2 before sunrise. All the establishments were already closed but I enjoyed the sight of the sea (the moon was bright). Sunrise side of Boracay is the Bulabog Beach where most of the fishing vessels are docked. I took some pictures of Boracay Sunrise along with some Koreans (or Chinese). After that I went back to Stations 1-2, Willy’s Rock and Boracay Church. I returned to Caticlan Port around 7:00 AM.

From Caticlan Port, I rode a tricycle going to Malay Town Proper where the municipal hall and church is located. I was surprised with the absence of jeepneys unlike in Iloilo province. I’m planning to travel each town (Nabas, Tangalan, Makato and Numancia) on my way to Kalibo where I have a flight to Manila at 8:00 PM.

I just took the van from Caticlan to Kalibo for P100. It was almost a 2-hour ride. I had lunch at Jollibee Kalibo and then take a tour of the nearby Kalibo Church, Museum and plaza. The museum entrance fee is only P50 and the display were beautiful, specially the paintings. I rented a tricycle to take me to the Capitol Building (Kalibo is the capital of Aklan), City Hall, Kalibo Freedom Park, and Rizal Monument.

From Kalibo, I took a special trip of tricycle to New Washington, Aklan. The capacity of the tricycles in Aklan is 9 including the driver. Tricycles are wider than the ones in Pasig City. The tricycle driver told me the old name of New Washington (I forgot) before it was changed. He told me that a president of the US visited the place years ago and as a sign of gratitude they renamed the town to New Washington. The driver also told me that Jaime Cardinal Sin has a house in the Poblacion near the church. I took a picture of that along with the church, municipal hall and Rizal Monument.

From the brochure I got from the museum, I learned that there’s a resort in New Washington with a Christmas theme. It’s called Sampaguita Gardens. The entrance fee is P25 and there’s a nice view of the sea. There’s also a house where you can find all sorts of decorations for Christmas. For P25, the place is awesome. It’s very Instagram-friendly.

Around 3PM I was back at Kalibo. I rode a jeep to a sleepy town called Balete. I took a picture of their church, new municipal hall, old town hall, the Rizal Monument and an art gallery called Basura Garden (walking distance from the municipal hall). I met the artist of the place who also teaches art to students. I felt that I was in one of the art studios of Angono.

By 6:00 PM I was at Kalibo International Airport. It’s a small one but has a coffee shop and an expensive souvenir shop. The Cebu Pacific plane was on time and by 10:00 PM I was back to the urban jungle of Manila.

I will post more pictures of each of the places I've mentioned here. Please stay tune

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Saturday, September 21, 2019

The Ancestral Houses of Alaminos City

A few weeks ago, I visited the province of Pangasinan. I took pictures of churches, municipal halls, Rizal monuments, public markets, parks and ancestral houses. It was a 2-day trip and I went from Dagupan City to Mangaldan, Manaoag, Pozzorubio, Laoac, Binalonan and Urdaneta City on the 1st day. On my 2nd day, I went from Urdaneta City to Alaminos City and this is where I found several ancestral houses, to my surprise.

Usually there are still 2-3 ancestral houses around the church in any Poblacion (or town center) but in Alaminos City, I found a lot. Here are some of the ancestral houses I found.

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