How to Get Ready for Your First Tattoo



A year ago, I got inked: two small tattoos at the same time! I get asked more often about the details of how I got my tattoo, so I think a blog post is called for.

To read more on where I got my tattoo, how much, and details on the experience, read here.

This post is about tips on how to prep up for your first tattoo experience.
(That is, if you're as meticulous as I am.)

Bantayan Series: Ogtong Cave (Tips and Expenses)





Bantayan Island in South Cebu boasts placid seas and pristine white-sand beaches. But there's also a hidden tourist spot in Sta. Fe: Ogtong Cave Resort. This post covers info on how to get there, the associated expenses, and other tips.

This post is part of a two-part Bantayan Series. To read about the Virgin Island, go here.

Getting There
  1. Bus: Cebu City to Hagnaya
  2. Barge or Ferry: Hagnaya to Sta. Fe, Bantayan
  3. Tricycle: Sta. Fe proper to Ogtong Cave Resort
    • Fare: 30-40php, one way (Tip: Haggle with driver, especially if you're a big group)
    • Seats 4-5 people
    • Travel time: 15-20min

My mother, at the entrance of Ogtong Cave Resort

Ogtong Cave Expenses
  • Entrance Fees
    • Fee: 100php/pax (half rate for children)
  • Food
    • Restaurant is run by Majestic. For the menu, see here.
    • Corkage fee: Yes.
  • Huts
    • No huts, just lounges and chairs.
    • Fee: FREE.
  • Accommodation
    • They have room accommodations, but I wasn't able to check out the rate. For some reason, their websites do not work, but you can check their FB page.
  • Amenities
    • The entrance fee covers the swimming fee for the underground cave, swimming pool, and beach.
    • Swimming schedule: 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Underground cave. The water is clear, but the cave isn't that big, or spacious.

Ogtong Cave Resort is part of the Sta. Fe Beach Club. So here's the beach :-)
Tips
  • Cave: The deepest water level is right below my nose. (I'm 5'3" tall.) So if you're bringing kids, or do not how to swim, stay near the mouth of the cave where the water is shallower. You can also perch on the rock formations. :-)
  • Swimming pool: The edges of the pool are of varying depths, from 2-3 feet. But going to the center, it can get as deep as 9 feet! So if you're not a fair swimmer, stay close to the sides.
  • Beach: Fairly shallow, so no harm here :-)
  • Tricycle: The place is tuyuonon, so I'd suggest having an agreement with the driver for a round-trip ride. Just agree on a time, and of course, the price. There are tricycle drivers waiting outside the resort as well.
  • Motorcycles and Bikes for Rent: Or you can opt to rent your own 2-wheel vehicle.
    • Rate for motorcycle: 300-350php for 24 hours
    • Rate for bicycle: 120-180php for 24 hours
    Ogtong Cave Resort . . . in another angle.

Bantayan Series: Virgin Island (Tips and Expenses)



One of the most prominent tourist spots in Bantayan Island (which is a tourist spot itself) is the Virgin Island. This post covers info on how to get there, the associated expenses, and other tips.

This post is part of a two-part Bantayan Series. To read about Ogtong Cave, Bantayan, go here.




Getting There
  1. Bus: Cebu City to Hagnaya
    • Ride bus from Cebu North Bus Terminal
    • Fare: 150.00php, one way
    • Travel time: 2-3H
    • Stop: Hagnaya Port, San Remegio, Cebu
    • Schedule: Hourly
  2. Barge or Ferry: Hagnaya to Sta. Fe, Bantayan
    • Board from Hagnaya Port
    • Fare: 170.00php, one way + 10.00php terminal fee
    • Travel time: 1-1.5H
    • Stop: Sta. Fe Port, Bantayan
    • Schedule: see photo below
    • Ferry to Bantayan Schedule

  3. Pump Boat: Sta. Fe, Bantayan to Virgin Island
    • Pickup point: To be discussed with boatman
    • Fee: 1,200.00php*
    • Travel time: 1H 
    • Stop: Virgin Island, Bantayan
    • Schedule: To be discussed with boatman
      • *For the above rate, contact Reynold at 0905-1237871


Virgin Island Expenses

  • Entrance Fees
    • 500php for the first two persons (500 still if you're travelling solo)
    • 100php for extra persons
Virgin Island "Entrance Fee"
(I'm scared of the scare quotes)
What happens in Virgin Island, stays in Virgin Island

  • Food
    • Buy fish/seafood and rice at Bantayan Island first before heading to Virgin Island. The boatman can cook for you.
    • Fee: 250-300php
    • There is no corkage fee if you bring your own food. 
    • There is no restaurant there; only a sari-sari (convenience store) where you can buy drinks and snacks.
  • Huts
    • Rate: Starts at 300php.
    • You can also opt to spread a picnic blanket there to save, or you can eat at the pump boat.
  • Accommodation
    • No room accommodation at the island, but you can bring your own tent and camp there.
    • Camping fee: NONE
One of the picture-worthy "decorations" in Virgin Island



Extreme Watersports in Lapu-Lapu, Cebu

Last month, my friend* and I fortunately got a discounted voucher for an extreme watersports package at Serena Watersports for 3,000php with lunch (70% off!). 

Serena Watersports is based in Tambuli Beach Resorts, Pag-utlan, Maribago Lapu-Lapu City Cebu. For some reason, they don't have a website or Facebook page, so I think it makes sense to blog about it (for you know, marketing). Also, Serena Watersports is not to be confused with the Serena Beach Resort in Moalboal, Cebu. :-)

Voucher for 3,000php/pax with lunch

Whale Sharks and Heartbreak



Last weekend, my best friend, his fiancée, his dad, and I went to swim with the whale sharks in Oslob, Cebu.

I'm blogging about it, because a friend told me of an urban legend about Oslob. That whale sharks are instinctively attracted to people who are heartbroken, in an attempt to comfort them, and that is the reason whale sharks are becoming semi-permanent dwellers on the shores of Oslob: Because there are many unfortunate souls in Oslob, nursing a broken heart.

And I can attest to that. Because the whale sharks just can't seem to stay away from me. They like to stay really close!



So here's a guide on how to get to Oslob, details on the whale shark watching, tips, and a sample itinerary.

Vigan: 4-Day Itinerary and Budget


Last year, Kria and I went to Vigan. Two soul searchers, travelling on a budget. After a year of putting off chronicling our trip, it's only now I realized that a blog post is indeed necessary, given the many inquiries I received from friends and family.

So here it goes. This post will be in two parts: (1) the itinerary and budget, and (2) a list of things you can do per tourist attraction.

Calle Crisologo

I opted to exclude our photos, because hell, you can just Google tourist photos in Vigan, hehe!

#JonSnowLives: Fan Theory


This is my own theory, as a book fan, on why Jon Snow may still be alive.

---
"'Ghost,' he whispered...He never felt the fourth knife. Only the cold..."

This part leaves me to believe that Jon warged into Ghost before he died. Therefore, Jon is alive, as Ghost.

Why?

In the books, Jon is repeatedly portrayed as a warg, just like Bran Stark, but a little less trained in the art of warging as Bran was. Nevertheless, Jon is a skin-changer: he can transfer to Ghost's skin at will.

The prologue of "A Dance with Dragons" tells the account of Varamyr Sixskins warging into a wolf moments before his death. What was said in the prologue was thus: 

"True death came suddenly; he felt the shock of cold...Then he found himself rushing over moonlit snows with his packmates close behind him."

This prologue was not for naught; it means something. GRR Martin would not have included this part had it not have some profound context to a major plot in the story.

For those questioning where Ghost was during Jon's death, here's what happened in the books: Jon commanded Ghost to stay behind, since he was to hold audience amongst the Crows and the wildlings, with one of the wildlings Borroq having a "pet" boar. Boars and direwolves are fierce foes by nature, and both Borroq and Jon do not wish for their pets to kill each other. Thus, Ghost must be left behind, away from Jon, so as not to provoke the wildling boar.

Here's my theory: Ghost was out hunting, or somewhere inside Castle Black, where the snow and cold were fierce in their coming as winter commenced. That is what is meant by Jon only feeling the cold as he was "dying": his soul was fleeing to Ghost's skin, and therefore, he lives.

---

Book Review: After You


Title: After You
Author: Jojo Moyes
Genre: Romance
Rating: 5 out of 5


Review:

After You is essentially the sequel to the much more popular book Me Before You, which is why I decided to write a review on this instead of the first book.

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