Tuesday, 13 January 2015

New York City -- Day 2

Isn't it amazing how time flies?  It's Christmas one minute and the next thing you know it's a whole new year once again.

I'm not quite done with my travel posts, but I'm trying to do my best to blog about them as much as I can because they're so long overdue...  Anyway, this is about my second day in New York where I spent the whole day out trying to see the city on a bus.  Now I like bus tours because you get to see most of the skyscrapers and other attractions the city is famous for from the outside, so even if you aren't able to go inside a particular store or building while you're on the tour bus, at least you'd know it's there and can walk back or hop off to check it out some other time.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Highlights of 2014

There's only less than a day before 2015 arrives and while everyone's busy preparing for the new year, I would like to share and make this post about everything I'm thankful for.

Isn't it funny how time flies?  It's the end of another year again...This year was full of amazing experiences, wonderful people and surreal adventures & moments that I will forever cherish and be grateful for.
One of the highlights of this year was when I visited my dearest friend Tiff, in Jakarta and met some of her awesome cousins, relatives and her friend, Bill.  It was amazing to see a part of Indonesia as well and I thank God for giving me the opportunity to have been there.

Another thing I'm grateful for is my family (sister's not in this photo though)... This was taken during my baby brother's high school graduation.  We are blessed for we were able to see him be done with this stage and see him off to the next.

My brother and I have been busy with our own lives even though we used to live under the same roof.  I had to work on weekdays and he had to do schoolwork or hang out with friends on weekdays or weekends.  Either way, we wouldn't really hang out so much unless there were family occasions/events.  We were close but we would only see each other at home all the time, so we decided to go to HK and spend the day there where we got to eat and bond like siblings should.  (He's currently in the US for college and I miss him dearly!)

One of our friends got married to her other half and we couldn't be any happier for them. :)  

Carlos and I celebrated our fourth year anniversary last June and hopefully, we'll be celebrating more anniversaries in the future.

Being with our sister was the best thing that's happened this year because it has been way too long since we saw each other... Another dream come true is that we were able to go to Disneyworld in the US.  Once again, I'm very thankful for God gave us the opportunity to be together and spend quality time with each other.  Hopefully, next time our dad would be coming with us too.

God also gave me the opportunity to reunite with the friends I met in Paris two years ago in Eureka Springs!  And I had an amazing time with them, not to mention, I got to try a bunch of different things like ziplining and horseback riding!

My baby took me to the Philippines for a family event and this was our first trip out of China and I'm just really happy it happened because it's been years since I last visited the motherland. :)

I got to travel again with my love and meet my dear friend, Tiff in Bali before the year ended!  I never thought I'd be able to step foot in Indonesia twice but I got to and I'm very grateful for it happened.  This is one of the best years of my life despite having no job.  Once again, I thank God for making all of this possible.  We owe everything to Him! :)

Happy New Year everyone and I hope you'll all be able to achieve your dreams in the coming year and remember to keep on praying, working hard and keep on dreaming & believing!  God bless everyone and stay positive!  Cheers to 2015!


Thursday, 25 December 2014

New York City -- Day 1

Two days after we got back from St. Louis, my sister took me to the airport where I had to fly alone because my sister did not have enough days of annual leave...  However, I wanted to go to NYC so badly that I decided to go on my own.  I met up with a friend from college who lives there and stayed with her for a couple of days.

Monday, 22 December 2014

St. Louis -- Cathedral Basilica & Gateway Arch

The next day was a Sunday so we attended mass at the lovely Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis.  I was impressed by how it looked from the outside as it had that sort of medieval look, what with the arches and somewhat pointy towers.

The inside looked stunning as well, the art that were painted on the ceilings were very detailed and colourful.  The church was well lit and huge.  This cathedral is worth visiting because you can get the feeling that you're in Europe.  And maybe it's just me, but I tend to think of European cathedrals or churches in general whenever I see or go to one.  Of course the ones in Macau aren't as detailed in terms of the art and sculptures as the one below, but it still gives me that vibe, considering that it was once a Portuguese colony.

Our agenda for that day was to check out of the hotel, shop for food at Trader Joe's and visit the famous monument of Missouri which is known as the Gateway Arch.  Missouri is a wonderful city by the way, what with all their tall buildings and stuff.  I'm not sure if they can be compared to those skyscrapers in New York, but nonetheless, it's a great city!  I would definitely live there if I get the chance to do so.

We were only able to take pictures from the outside, due to the fact that there was a really long queue to go up and see the whole city from the arch.  I didn't think it mattered though because I know I'll be able to come back if ever my sister decides to move there. :)  I knew both my sister and aunt wanted to get back home asap since they had to work the next day and we didn't want to be on the road after sunset.

I definitely enjoyed my sister's company and I was a bit saddened by the fact that this was our last road trip for this year because I had to go back to Macau in two weeks (I'm back in Macau now, btw, in case any of you are wondering... I haven't really been in the mood to blog about my travels when I got back, until recently...so I'm trying my best to do them now).

Anyway, I do hope you like the pictures taken by my sister and yours truly.  Have a great week ahead everyone and hopefully someday, you can Meet me in St. Louis. :)


Thursday, 18 December 2014

St. Louis -- The Botanical Gardens

We left for St. Louis, Missouri the day after the wedding which was about five or six hours away.  Again, I had no idea what I could do as I remember being unable to sleep in the car because I was so excited about where we would go next and what was in store for us in our next destination.

I know I remember seeing pictures of my mom, sister and my aunt in St. Louis and I thought the places they went to were really pretty.  I just never expected we'd be going to the same places they went to so I'm really glad we stopped by this city before going back home to Little Rock.

We stayed at the Drury Inn & Suites and I was pretty amazed by how nice and lovely their lobby was.  We were greeted by their friendly staff and immediately issued a key.  Now, I don't know how much my sister paid for our room but the one we got was really spacious and it had a wonderful view.

I would definitely recommend this hotel for anyone who's visiting Missouri.  Breakfast is free for guests by the way so this is a yay for breakfast lovers.  They also offer a kind of mini tea time buffet where they had a variety of food such as mac & cheese, sausages, chili con carne and a bunch of other desserts.  We arrived at around noon time so we got to enjoy their yummy mini buffet.  Moreover, guests could have two cocktails for free if I can remember correctly.

At night, guests can get free popcorn and sodas while watching the game near the lobby.  It was nice and very relaxing!


Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Wisconsin -- Cheese Factory/The Art Museum/The Wedding

The weather in Madison wasn't very promising.  It would've been nice if it was only chilly, but noooo it had to rain!  And I believe everyone knows that the cold + the rain won't please anyone.  However, I really can't complain though because I like cold weather!  I love wearing sweaters and jumpers and long sleeved clothing in general.  And I got to do all that in September so hoooraaay!!  If I were in Macau then, I'd be complaining about the heat.

Anyway, I'd say I'm pretty lucky to have a sister who is not one who would like her time to be wasted which is why we got to do a bunch of stuff before her friend's wedding (which was the main purpose of this whole trip).  I would just like to let you know that this blog post will probably be the longest among any of my other posts since I am reluctant to separate them. :P

Our first stop was the Cedar Grove Cheese where we got to see their little factory and got a tour out of it.  Basically, the tour enabled people to read what was on their walls including its history, how they're made and so on, so forth.  I honestly do not remember what was written on those walls because I was too mesmerized by the people behind the glass and pretty much intrigued by how they make the cheese... not to mention, I was also only interested in tasting/buying/eating the cheese.  We ended up buying some of their cheese curds which are to die for!  They were really, really good and those are what I would recommend you to get if ever you're in town or if ever you get the chance to visit them.  You can munch on them while watching a movie and it just makes a really good snack.  It also makes that squeaky sound as you chew on them which totally reminds me of the mice in cartoons. :)

We also passed by the store where we could get some sausages because my sister said they were good.  I think I've only had a few bites and they were alright, but I probably wouldn't come back for more... not unless I crave for them.

Friday, 5 December 2014

Wisconsin -- The Long drive

The weekend after Eureka Springs was followed by our trip to Madison in Wisconsin.  The drive there was just oh-so-long, it can't even be compared to our previous road trips.  We had to wake up really early just so we can be right on schedule.  That didn't happen, of course.  That's what people get for planning ahead... so lesson learnt, don't plan ahead!  Just kidding! :)

We left home at around 3:50 am and during those few hours before the break of dawn, I fell asleep even though I wanted to keep my sister company.  However, to stay awake the entire trip was just impossible.  I'm actually amazed at how my sister managed to stay awake during the entire trip... not that she was given a choice.  I honestly thought that my sister would be switching with our aunt at some point, but they didn't so she had to drive all the way there with a couple of stops.

We had to stop at a bunch of gas stations to get something to eat and drink and use the bathroom.  It's not easy being on the road for a couple of hours, let alone being on the road for 12-13 hours.  The only things I could do was take photos, listen to music, take naps, read my book and of course chat with my sister about stuff while our aunt was asleep because we had a bunch of stuff to talk about.  :)