<b>Beyond Pink Stripes</b>

Random musings, stories, snapshots, and reviews from the "little" girl with several abandoned blogs who suddenly finds herself inspired to scribble once again after coming into her senses and realizing that there's more to LIFE than PINK STRIPES.☺

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Boracay + Howie D. of Backstreet Boys = Fantastic Workcation

Just a few minutes ago, I was browsing through my old files and I caught sight of this particular folder with photos of an unforgettable "workcation" (work plus inevitable vacation) which happened during the last week of September 2008. The experience was so fantastic that I now find myself taking a walk down memory lane.:D

September 23, 2008 (or wait, was it 24? anyway...), my feet first stepped on the dazzling white sands of Boracay

Boracay is one of the small islands in the Philippines which overflow with unspeakable charm and beauty, making it one of the country's popular destinations. Its White Beach, with clear blue skies that seem to reflect in the waters, is among the things that entice a lot of people, locals and tourists alike, to visit it all year round. The ambiance can either be serene or boisterously fun, depending on one's exact location in the island at the moment.:)

The White Beach is divided into 3 stations:
Station 1 is considered as the "high-end" part of the stretch and it is said that sand is at its finest in here.  The hotels too are the posh ones in this area. 

Station 2 is the center for parties with its bars and restaurants. People flock here especially at night to eat, drinks, and well, be merry lol. 

Station 3 has budget accommodations which obviously are less expensive than the ones in Station 1.

My 2 and a half day trip to such paradise was made possible by my former company (<--- click the link and like the page). I would like to emphasize that the primary reason for sending me there was work and not pleasure, oh yeah!:D. I was part of the trio (Hello Dianne and Duds!) who had to accompany special foreign guests and make sure everything's alright during their stay in the island. 

Because of our dear guests, we had to be housed in no less than the luxurious (and quite new then) Discovery Shores located in Station 1. That alone was enough to make my first time in Boracay a fantastic one:


Picturesque facade of Discovery Shores
 Some of the welcome goodies: Waterproof Bag, Souvenir Bracelet and Foot Spa. 
We were also given sunblock, body mist, beach bag, among others.
Our suite.:) 
The bed was so large that the 3 of us were able to fit in comfortably. 
There's Duds at the back, in yellow. That's me 4 years ago in pink 
and Dianne on the phone.:)
                            And this is the wonderful view we're talking about! 
                            I'm not referring to my bare back ok??? LOL!!!!:)        
More of the breathtaking scenery. Never mind Mr.Sun who had us squinting.:)
The relaxing pool and jacuzzi in Discovery Shores --- 
a perfect alternative to those who don't want to bask in the sun just yet.:) 
And yeah, during our stay, we were served with a snack of 
sweetened banana while in the pool.

 My tastebuds were just as happy as I was during that "workcation" because of these and more!

Welcome treat from Discovery Shores Boracay.
On the second day, a staff brought to our suite 
this too-beautiful-to-be-eaten leche flan.
We ate it anyway haha.
Our drinks during the day from our hotel. 
And our munchies at night bought at a food station in Station 2.

And the best part of the whole experience?

(UP MUSIC: Quit playing games with my heart, with my heart, with my heart. I should have known from the start...lalala baby...)

HOWIE D. of BACKSTREET BOYS!:) With his wife LEIGH.:) Yeah! He came to the Philippines to promote the single "I'll Be There", a duet with Pop Princess (or better yet, Queen) Sarah Geronimo from her album "Just Me". Part of his itinerary was to see what has once been acclaimed as "Best Island in the World" by a travel magazine. 

Once upon a time, before the K-POP era, I was one of the zillion fans adoring Backstreet Boys from afar. Little did I know that 12 years after, I would be face to face and actually speaking with one of "the boys". I would have died if it had been Nick Carter though haha. Prior to the meeting, I really thought that I had already outgrown the BSB fanaticism. Apparently, I was mistaken.:)

Fangirls LOL!

But then, as always, a wonderful adventure (especially if it's a "workcation" to begin with) is not without stress and crucial decisions to make from beginning to end. But what I would rather remember now are...the nice things.:D 

And that wraps up my reminiscence for today teeeheee.:D

Monday, November 26, 2012

Quick Al Fresco Dining Experience: Marikina Christmas Celebration 2012

Since the onset of Marikina's  Christmas celebration for 2012, the surrounding areas of the City Hall and Sports Complex have been transformed into a bazaar, carnival (complete with games and rides), and venue for al fresco dining.

Coming from our respective work-related events on a Sunday, Hubby and I decided to unwind a bit and our feet brought us to such brightly lit and activity-laden place. Since we were both tired, we thought of just spending less than an hour there. It was impossible for us to cover everything with our limited time so our unanimous decision was to fill our tummies with some street food. We took a stop at McDonald's Avenue, the street filled with food stalls just across Marikina City Hall and at the side of Sports Complex.  

Most of the stalls had "ihaw-ihaw" or grilled goodies (ordered with or without rice) ranging from chicken intestine to pork belly. 

But there were also other tastebud delights available such as pizza, shawarma, bibingka, puto bumbong, ice cream, siomai, and peanuts.

And the prices? I say, affordable!

Thirst quenchers.:)

We bought dugo/ betamax (pork blood) and isaw (chicken intestine) plus melon juice.

Me grinning by the "ihaw-ihaw" stall.:)
betamax and isaw :)

However the place was so packed with people, there were no available tables and chairs anymore so we just took our food and proceeded to Freedom Park where it's more peaceful, far from the eye-watering smoke.

Sea of people :)
Experience was "bitin", as we say in Pinoy vernacular, so we are definitely going back to try other stuff. My priority is to ride the cable car. I'm so shallow, I know haha.

Photo stolen from the Hubby's collection haha :D I will ask permission, rather inform him, later
that I used his photo for this entry LOL!

The Christmas festivities in Marikina will run until January 15, 2013. :D

Friday, November 23, 2012

SHOEwcasing Marikina Shoe Museum

I am proud of MARIKINA, the city where I have lived for more than 2 decades now. It has gone through dramatic changes (for the better) and yet its colorful culture has not been totally eradicated over time. 

"The Shoe Capital of the Philippines"

Such is the title that the city takes pride in because of its remarkable shoe industry that dates back to year 1887. The industry boomed through the efforts of Don Laureano Guevarra or more popularly known as Kapitan Moy. History states that the captain's initial attempt in shoemaking was brought about by his desire to fix the broken soles of his imported shoes. 

Since then, Marikina has risen to be the biggest shoe manufacturer in the Philippines.  Well, I would agree without hesitation if we're referring to the past years. But now? I'm jut not sure. I heard stories of local shoe brands sourcing their products from China because labor is way cheaper there. Hmmmm, I don't want to stir controversy at this point because I have yet to do some research so I'll just stop talking about this matter haha.

Anyway, fact remains that Marikina is something which I would not trade for any other cities in the country. In fact, when foreign friends (Yao, our Taiwanese brother whom we also visited 2 years ago in Taipei and Frances, a pretty British lady) came to visit 2 weeks ago, I thought what better way to spend the day than to tour the city?:)

Hubby and I planned a full itinerary for our friends and our last stop was the Marikina Footwear Museum. (This may sound absurd but it was actually my first time to enter the museum. Thanks to Yao and Frances, I suddenly had time, rather, took the time to visit it. LOL)

Marikina Footwear Museum , or simply Shoe Museum, is one of the popular sites that has enticed tourists and locals alike  since 2001. It houses a quite big and interesting collection of well, shoes. Notable displays are traditional shoes from all over the world and shoes previously owned by public officials, athletes and celebrities. Yeah, shoes and more shoes. 

The displays on the second floor relive the history of shoemaking in Marikina, including the traditional tools of the trade and the awards received by various Marikeno shoemakers. There is also a life-sized dummy of a woman in the process of making shoes. During our visit, I was actually fooled for a few seconds, I thought it was real haha!

And the highlight of Marikina Shoe Museum? IMELDA'S SHOES

The former First Lady, whose significance in promoting Marikina shoes cannot be denied, has several of her shoes showcased in this museum - 800 out of the 3,0000 pairs she accumulated during the reign of her husband Ferdinand Marcos. Her collection boasts of local brands such as Rustans, Jemelyn's and Marlet, as well international ones namely Ferragamo, Givenchy, Chanel, Christian Dior, Charles Jourdan and Bally. The size 8 1/2 pairs make up a vast array of colors (from pastel to metallic) and kinds (from rugged to classy) that is sure to leave any shoe lover in awe!:) 

It is said that Imelda was given an average of 10 pairs every week by local shoemakers. It's no wonder she was able to amass such collection! One more trivia, she never wore high heels when she was with her late husband Ferdinand. Hmmm.

These are some of the photos which I have taken inside the museum. Yes, picture-taking is very much allowed. Enjoy!:)

Outside the Shoe Museum are giant shoes that double as quirky vehicles haha :D Much to my dismay, the battery of our camera was drained so we had no choice but to use a cellphone to take pictures of Yao and Frances with the giant shoes. As expected, the quality of the photos did not turn out to be that ok but I guess the memories left with them are good enough.:) 

The last photo taken before the camera shut off.

Marikina Footwear Museum is located at J.P. Rizal, Barangay San Roque. It is merely a stone's throw away from Our Lady of the Abandoned Parish and the Sentrong Pangkultura ng Marikina which is actually the ancestral house of Kapitan Moy. It is open everyday  from 8:00 am until 9:00 pm. A minimal fee of P50 is required for admission.

Record holder of The World's Largest Pair of Shoes (to date) with a length of 5.5 m, width of 2.25m and height of 1.83 m. This pair was completed in 2002, thanks to the collaborative effort of various shoemakers in Marikina. (Bravo!) One can find the amazing pair at Riverbanks Mall as the museum cannot accommodate it due to lack of space. 
Early on, Yao and Frances were able to have a clear picture taken with the largest pair of shoes so I guess that makes up for the blurred photos above teeehee :)
Have you ever visited to Marikina Shoe Museum? How was the experience?

Sunday, November 11, 2012


To be able to help others find their dream jobs is something which I find fulfilling. Therefore, I have decided to open my own employment agency!

Nah, just kidding.:) That would be a task too tedious, well for now haha. Meantime, I am helping a recruitment agency find the perfect candidate to fill the vacancies.:)

So here is my first ever list of openings for all of you out there in search of work. Note that the ones in red are URGENT requirements but no shortlisted candidates yet as of writing time.

IT / Technical Requirements

1.       C#.Net Developers (14 vacancies) – Location: Ortigas (9), Makati (5), and Quezon 
City; At least 4-7 years experience, day shift; At least 1 full SDLC experience; With experience using VxWorks a huge advantage

2.       C++ Developers – Location: Ortigas; day shift; At least 3 years solid experience using C++ (Visual C++ is ok) as main development language; With OOP and OOD experience; UI development using MFC; Very good English communication skills (verbal and written)

3.       ASP.Net Developers – Location: QC; At least 3 years in software development using ASP.Net using Umbraco (CMS); Willing to work mi-shift (1pm to 10pm); Knowledgeable in full SDLC

4.       Senior Business Analyst – Location: Makati; Must have prior experience in designing solutions frameworks (but expertise is as BA); Working experience using Radian6 (social media monitoring tool)
5.       SAP BobJ / BW / BEx Developers – Location: Makati; 3 years experience in related SAP development (business objects, business information warehouse, business explorer); Experience in end-to-end SDLC

6.       Middleware Administrators – Location: Muntinlupa; Experience using IBM Websphere or .Net; Has managed / supported clients overseas; Willing to work night shift

7.       PHP Developers (Senior / Lead) – Location: Quezon City; Must have supervisory experience; Willing to work mid-shift (UK hours)

8.       PHP Developers (Junior / Mid) – Location: Quezon City; Must have 2 to 3 years experience; Dayshift

9.       Process Engineer – Location: Ortigas; Must have experience in SCADA, DCS, or PLC; Willing to travel; Willing to work shifting schedules

10.   SAP FICO Functional Analyst – Location: Makati; At least 2 years experience as FICO functional analyst

11.   SQL Administrator – Location: Ortigas; Experience in implementing or supporting SQL Server Reporting Services; full SDLC experience; Willing to work night shift

12.   IT Manager (food retail) – Location: Taguig; Extensive IT management experience (lateral only), Specializing in systems, networks, and POS; Extensive project management experience; Not more than 45 years old; Must come from Retail industry (involving POS)

BPO Requirements

1.       Customer Service Representatives (agents) Location: QC; Must have at least 1 year experience as CSR; Must not have joined more than 2 companies in 2 years (at least 1 year stay per company)

2.       Technical Support Representatives (agents) – Location: QC; Must have at least 2 years experience as TSR (non-DSL type accounts; more on software application support, i.e. Quickbooks, SAP); Must not have joined more than 2 companies in 2 years (at least 1 year stay per company)

3.       Spanish-speaking CSRs – Location: Ortigas; Must be degree holder (college grad); willing to work on shifting schedules

4.       Korean-speaking CSRs – Location: Quezon City; Willing to work on shifting schedules

5.       Outbound Sales Representatives – Location: Alabang; Must be degree holder (college grad); Must have Outbound Sales experience; Willing to work night shift

6.       Outbound Sales Representatives – location: Makati, Pasig or Taguig; degree not required (undergrads accepted); no experience required; willing to work night shift

Food / Restaurant Requirements

1.       Research and Development Manager Location: Taguig; Must come from Restaurant / Fast Food industry; Extensive background in Restaurant Research and Development (product conceptualization and development, costing, preparation, etc.); Lateral transfer only(already in R&D Managerial capacity for at least 1 year); Not more than 45 years old

2.       Marketing Manager  Location: Taguig; Must come from Restaurant / Fast Food industry; Extensive and solid background in Marketing in the Restaurant / Food industry (advantage if coming from a restaurant / fast food company catering to Upper to Middle classes); Lateral transfer only (already in Marketing Managerial capacity for at least 2 years); Not more than 45 years old

3.       Training Manager Location: Taguig; Must have come from the Restaurant / Fast Food industry; Must have at least 5 years experience as Training Manager in the Restaurant industry (not food manufacturing); Must come from known Restaurant companies only; Lateral transfer only

4.       Franchise Business Development Manager – Location: Taguig; Ideally coming from the Restaurant / Fast Food industry; Must come from large enterprises only; Extensive and solid background in developing programs, campaigns, benefits, research, site selection, workforce management, etc. with regards to company franchise development; Lateral transfer only

Logistics and Distribution

1.       Crewing Manager – Location: Pasay; Must have at least 5 experience as Crewing Manager; Lateral transfer only; Willing to handle or has handled Fleet Tankers

Sales & Marketing Requirements

1.       Digital Marketing Manager Location: Makati; Must be in the same capacity (lateral transfer only), coming from top advertising firms (McCann Erickson, Lowe, Ace Saatchi & Saatchi, Ogilvy, Publicis, etc.); Projects and accomplishments must have been focused on New Media campaigns (social listening, social media, viral, blogging, etc.)

2.       Sales & Training Officers (Beauty and Personal care industry) – Must be degree holders (college grad); fresh grads are ok; must be female, with good comm skills and good looks

3.       Product Manager (Beauty and Personal care industry) – Must not have job-hopping background (must be less than 2 companies in last 4 years); At least 5 years working experience

4.       Business Development Officer (Beauty and Personal care industry) – Must not have job-hopping background (must be less than 2 companies in last 4 years); At least 3-5 years working experience; 3 vacancies

5.       Regional Sales Manager (Construction products) – Location: North Luzon; Must know Ilocano (preferred), Pangasinense, or other northern dialects; Not more than 45 years old, At least 5 years experience handling sales for construction products (cement, piping, etc.)

HR & Admin Requirements

1.       AVP / Manager for Admin – Location: Ortigas; Must have Customer Service & Concierge background (from known Hotels)

Finance, Accounting, and Banking Requirements

1.       Finance Controller Location: Taguig (Fort); Must come from BPO, or companies with services related to Online Gaming / Online Gambling (i.e. online casinos, sports betting, etc.); Must be a sports fanatic

2.       Mandarin / Fookien-speaking Branch Heads (Banking) – Lateral only; Must come from banking industry and has experience as Branch Head

3.       CFO (logistics and distribution) – Location: Pasay; Extensive knowledge and experience in Taxation; SAP and FACT end user experience; Willing to take online assessment exam before interview

4.       Senior Finance Manager Location: Eastwood (QC); Extensive experience in Auditing and Government/Legal-related Financial Management (PEZA, Taxation, etc.); Must be at Managerial capacity already for at least 5 years; Must come from known BPO company; willing to work mid shift (UK hours)

Manufacturing Requirements

1.       Plant Manager – Must have extensive experience in facilities and equipment / machine maintenance management (i.e. boilers, conveyors, line manufacturing equipment); Lateral only

2.       Warehouse Manager – Must have extensive management experience in logistics, distribution, inventory management, delivery; Lateral only; Must have come from manufacturing company

3.       Production Planing & Inventory Control Manager – Location: QC; At least 2 years in Manufacturing or Production Planning and Inventory Control; Lateral transfer only (must be in the same capacity in current employment); Background experience in GMP (good manufacturing practice)

4.       Research and Development Manager – Location: QC; At least 5 years working experience in all phases of product development; Must have stayed in each job for an average of 3 years each

5.       Product Development Manager – Location: QC; At least 5 years working experience in product formulation, research and development (personal, home, health care products), product performance, efficacy testing; Must have stayed in each job for an average of 3 years each

Once again, those in red are URGENT requirements but no shortlisted candidates yet as of writing time.

Interested individuals may get in touch with me by sending me an email - goldabidz@gmail.com. Please feel free to spread the word to your family and friends.

Happy job hunting! GOD BLESS!:)