Finally Vaccinated!

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More than a year since the pandemic, I finally got my first dose of vaccine today! It feels good to finally have one knowing that I have an added defense in me against COVID-19, especially at a time when a rising number of cases is happening in Davao.

Over the past weeks, I’ve been checking on how to have my vaccine because some people I know already have theirs even if they’re classified as A4. I’m an A3 though due to my allergic rhinitis. I registered about 4 weeks ago through Davao Safety QR website but I haven’t had my schedule from the city. I texted and called the hotlines but I don’t get any response LOL. I also considered walking in in the hopes of getting a slot but I’ve learned it can take to as long as 7 hours of waiting!!

So how I got my vaccine?

This is not sketchy, if that’s what you’re thinking!! I’m living with someone who works in the hospital as a nurse. So the hospital (or is it a health department protocol?), after the dependents of the employees already got their own vaccines, opens new registration for people living in the same household as their employees who are health workers. I fall under that category, Ex-A1.

Is this the hospital’s way to protect their employees? Protect too who they have direct contact with. It’s ingenious! HAHA.

Vaccination Site Processing and Waiting Area

The process was pretty smooth all throughout. It took me 2.5 hours from the verification of the documents (they’re kind of strict about this) to the monitoring area. The person in-charged to have my blood pressure checked didn’t bother to check it at all. He told me while smiling that this age isn’t the type who can be hypertensive. Like, seriously? Pero okay, bahala ka. haha.

The nurse who injected the vaccine told me that my arms is hard because she can’t get the needle in. lol. Thanks for the compliment, though! I was just a bit doubtful at first that she indeed pushed the vaccine in from the syringe. Aside from it happened so fast that I didn’t realized I was already pierced by the needle, have you seen the viral video in Makati where the vaccines was not successfully injected to the patient? That gave me paranoia. haha. But no, I’m convinced that the mrna is in me.

May be an image of one or more people and text that says 'NAIS MAGKAROON NG DAGDAG PROTEKSYON LABAN SA MALUBHANG COVID-19 AT PAGKAMATAY? MAGAGAWA 'YAN NG MGA BAKUNANG MAY FDA EUA! BAKUNA PROTEKSYON MULA SA SEVERE COVID-19 AND DEATH* 100% 100% ASTRAZENECA PFIZER SINOVAC 100% SPUTNIK V 100% *BASE SA PHASE III CLINICAL TRIALS DATA LIGTAS ITO!' WAG NA PAHULI SA BIDA BAKUNATION! Healthy Pilipinas OLUSVON NT RESBAKUNA KASANGGA NG BIDA'

Anyway, so when I was on the site, the doctors give different brands of vaccine depending on who lives in the household with their employee. This kind of question me the photo above. The health department is campaigning about perceived equality of all the vaccines available. Yet, why do they classify who gets who? That for sure won’t help in changing the perspective of the public that a brand is less effective, or better, than the other. But that’s for them to think through.

Just thankful that I feel safer now. I hope my immune system works perfectly fine after the two doses. And I hope all of us gets the vaccine asap so we can live again free from the fear of COVID-19.

Welcome back, self!

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First of all, I’d like to apologize to that part of me who loves to write about my thoughts. I didn’t realize until today that it has been 3 years since I last posted on my blog. 3 long years!! I hope it’s not too late to rekindle that part of me. I would like to bring back that side of me who just writes about my life regardless of who reads it. Anyhow, life has been pretty okay for the past months. So I hope to allot some energy into writing.

The thing, I think, why I stopped writing in 2018 was because that period was a little tough for me that I hate to share what was I up to – until I forget about writing.

And then the COVID-19 happened which made all things a little worse at the beginning. So here’s what kind of happened from my very last post ’til today.

(Left) When Saori was hospitalized | (Middle) my newly upgraded photobooth set up | (Right) Badminton when face mask was not required

2018

This is a year after I resigned from my job without any solid plans at all. It hunted me that I don’t know where specific I was going to. I was directionless. I feel like I was just hustling to survive. My small photobooth business was actually doing pretty well that time (actually took off, like 200% growth vs. 2017) but it was so hard because all the operations and marketing was on me. It was a one-man show. Ako lahat nagbubuhat ng gamit, set up, take ng photos, etc. I do enjoyed it, only that, I felt all alone doing it.

During this period, I was questioning my choices in all aspects of my life. And what’s so hard was the fact that I was away from the people I am closed with, from family and friends. I don’t have friends in Davao so my routine was just home and if I have errands for the business. That’s pretty much what my life was in 2018. I didn’t travel too because that’s a sacrifice I made when I resigned from my job so I can focus on growing my ’empire’ which obviously didn’t materialized at all haha.

I also got Saori my dog who played a really huge part for my sanity. I got a companion and a friend (and headache hahaha).

(Left) La Union trip with my barkada | (Middle) Christmas dinner with family | (Right) My new amazon beshies

2019

This was a breakthrough year for my photobooth business. I made more than half a million in revenue (which was very huge for me at that time haha). The year kind of relaxed me for a time. ‘Kind of’ because I am that type who gets anxious about the future. I felt like all good things will come to an end which I am afraid of haha. Like every month, I was worried about what if I get lesser customers for the next months. This is so wrong in so many ways, I know. It’s just hard to unwire the brain from it.

Anyway, in the 4th quarter of 2019, I also invested in another business which is Amazon selling wherein I was able to build my own ecommerce business. This point somehow help reshaped my life, especially in 2020 when nobody really expected a pandemic in this modern era. This period also opened my journey to ecommerce and its endless possibilities. I still didn’t know if I was in the right direction, but I think I was making progress.

Oh, and I made friends online! haha. My Amazon batchmates are awesome and I love how we support each other with our respective businesses. I met my Amazon BFF named Andrea who’s the best in our batch. Until now we still talk to each other about not just Amazon but life, chismis, and other things in general.

(Left) Day before the lockdown in Davao City | (Right Top) Wedding of my friend despite pandemic | (Right Bottom) Dined in with mom and sister with mask

2020

The start of the year was pretty hard and slow for me, which was before the looming danger of COVID-19. My photobooth business was slow which made me so worried. However, I got a coaching stint together with Andrea (it was a dream come true!) for an Amazon course which pays pretty decent for a part time position. So that kind of offset what I lost from the business.

And then lockdown happened..

And so I have to close down the entire photobooth business which was so hard for me (although I was already thinking about selling it to focus on ecommerce). Until now, it has not generated any income but once we’re back to normal, I think I would hire people to help me operate it.

And then I met a Canadian client (Jeremy) whom I admire for his ambitious goals and humble demeanor. He’s an electrician who wants to build his own Amazon and Ecommerce agency. So I help him achieve that. I still work with him and we have seen rapid growth since we started.

About that coaching stint I had, I left them after 7 months. haha. I know I have to leave when my principles is different from the organization. I don’t want to be involved anymore from something I stopped believing in.

And then, and this is the best part of my 2020…

In September 2020, I successfully launched a local ecommerce store here in PH. Since then, it has reached milestone after milestone every month. That’s for sure was the highlight of my 2020. It gave me a totally different and new sets of confidence and direction and vision of how my future could be.

I don’t know how much impact this pandemic has to me because I felt like the year just passed so fast. I mean, I sure missed the normal life of no masks in public and the gatherings outside. But probably because I don’t really go out a lot haha. I’m a home boy. I spend a lot of time in my room. I didn’t gain weight as others. Didn’t get bored so much because thats basically my life in general – on a lockdown hahaha.

(Left) Brought Saori during our Badminton play | (Middle) Inside the quarantine area upon arrival in the airport while waiting for the result of my swab test | (Right) Dinner in Bangkerohan after Badminton

Present

I started the year confidently mainly because of my growing ecommerce business and a good run with Jeremy. Plus the fact that I was able to help my sister to have a source of income is really something I am proud of.

I am aiming for my local store to grow significantly in the next few years. The brand I am building I think will create an impact to our society. It’s an ambitious goal that I recently set. I don’t know how will I do it, but I hope this time, I stick to what I wanna do (because I tend to jump to different things). I hope I can find investors too who will believe in this project. Or if not, I hope my current business can earn enough to fund the project.

Also, I fall in love on a whole different level with badminton. I just love playing (and I tend to be competitive too haha). I play everyday and train twice a week. I actually miss the court right now because we are on strict lockdown again since June 5. I also made friends because of joining different groups. They are funny and happy to be with.

This year is also the period where I do few donations to contribute in helping few people who are much affected of this pandemic. I always pray to have the heart to give. I know all these blessings I am receiving is God’s way of blessing others.

That’s pretty much the “in-betweens’ of the life I missed to write. It revolves around business and “all others” because that’s basically me. I’m a boring guy with huge ambitions. Nothing interesting hahaha.

I just wanted to say too that I wish this pandemic will come to an end very soon. I know that’s what we all want to happen. I hugely miss the normal life with no fears of getting a contagious virus, where we can all be carefree as we go to the mall, eat street foods in the night market, play Badminton, dine in to restos, travel to different places, and all those normal stuff that people would do pre-pandemic. Although the reality that we can’t truly get back to what and who we were before COVID-19 is as bright as the sun, I’m very much positive about living under a new normal where fear about the virus is non-existent. Cliche as it may sound, but this for sure will just be a thing of the past.

Oh, lastly, I hope I can get my vaccine very sooon. :(

Matigol Falls, Arakan, North Cotabato

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We celebrated Independence Day, June 12, in one of the places I didn’t thought will be greatly mesmerizing. I just joined Ram’s group (his workmates) in this adventure. I didn’t even google our destination just to check what’s waiting for me there. Haha. In fact, I thought we’re going to Bukidnon instead of North Cotabato. And  I can’t even pronounce the right name of the falls. Hahaha. (You can check my Youtube Vlog about the Matigol Falls here)

Anyway, Matigol Falls in Arakan, North Cotabato is just less than two hours away from Davao City. We arrived in Arakan at around 5AM and started the trek right away. From the jump off area, there will be a 30-45 minutes trek to the registration.

Registration Fee: PHP 35.00 per person

Tour Guide: PHP 300.00 per group

All fees will be paid in the registration area.

From there, an hour of mesmerizing mountain climbing awaits. Why? These photos will tell you why!

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After few minutes of break, we started to climb up the trail of the falls. Here’s when the climax started. The trail is too steep, just like any other mountain when you are near the summit. However, it’s all worth it!

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Forget about getting sunburn and getting tired. Just enjoy the moment, feel the cold fresh water and dive into it. Being on top of the mountain, away from the city life, brings so much calmness within.

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To see our entire experience, check out my vlog about Matigol Falls. It will give you much more idea of how the experience will be. Enjoy!

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SIDE TRIP:

After Matigol Falls, we went straight to Bemwa Farm to get some refreshments. You can take a lot pictures in the farm as they offer different crops such as Strawberries!!! There’s a minimal entrance fee to the farm.

We also had some merienda (in my case, lunch haha) in Seagull Mountain Resort. Make sure to have your cameras ready! You’ll be transported to Baguio while in Mindanao! LOL. Seriously, there are a lot of instagram-worthy spots in that area. You gotta try also their Hot Tsokalate and Suman. You must!

That’s it! Thank you for dropping by! Comment your questions if you have one. :)


If you are looking for a place to stay in Davao, you may want to try Red Planet Davao for a discounted price! Just click the photo below.