Thursday, June 26, 2014

CELEBRATING THE 11TH YEAR OF FDG CUP

Badminton afficionados got excited again last weekend for the much awaited annual FDG Cup 2014 open and invitational tournament held at Powersmash badminton courts in Makati. It was a two weekend event to accommodate the newly added categories for open division - the men's and ladies singles categories. The last weekend was the highlight of the tournament where the exhibition games, final matches on all divisions, dinner, raffles and program were held.  

Being a member of the organizing committee on this prestigious badminton event in honor of our company's president, Frederick D. Go, we made sure that everything would turn out perfectly as we planned. And it was! It was another unforgettable event especially for a badminton addict like me.

Here are some photos of the event.


The poster.

 Leading the Oath of Sportmanship.

 Ceremonial toss with the major sponsors.

 Photo op with the guests from China - single's players Wang Xin and Wang Li, together with Christina Cobankiat, head of the organizing committee. The other pics shows my little badminton buddy, Gab,  posing with the China guests and Frederick Go.

The following pictures showed myself in actions during the tournament where I reached the final round on the Elite level with my long time partner in court, Einnor.

Elimination Round 1.

Elimination Round 2.

Elimination Round 3.

Semifinals Round.

Final Round. At the beginning of the match, I formally stopped and gave up the game due to inability to continue the match. I was feeling so tired and dehyrated already and in near-cramps condition. Playing 5 games in one day is 'impossible' for me nowadays.  Anyway, I was so happy enough to reach the finals proving myself that at my age I am still competitive with the elite players who are mostly composed of young and energetic varsity players.


The dinner and program set-up.

During the awarding of individual winners.

Aside from the individual award, my team also won as 1st runner up.

Sharing my triumph with Gab and Gian.

My medals and cash prizes.

I won again in the major raffle - a Casio G Shock watch.

Comedian artists Jose and Wally's performance.

Host / Comedian actress Ai-ai Delas Alas.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

FATHER'S DAY DATE

While lying on the bed and watching tv with my daughter last sunday which was a Father's Day, we were discussing on what to do that day to celebrate. First, we just simply thought of having a good lunch in a resto then we thought of just buying some pizza and pasta to take home to share with the other people in the house. On the way out of the subdivision, it suddenly came into my mind to take her to one of my favorite weekend getaway near our place to have lunch - in Thunderbird Resort. There, she can also do some biking which is her favorite pastime lately. So went back to the house to change car and load the bike. Along the way, we called up Gian and invited him to join us. He lives very near the resort actually.

So we had a good lunch at their new outlet named Olives located at their pool area. I enjoyed the tomato seafood soup the most. The best I've tasted so far. Regina had all meat pizza, Gian got salmon pasta and I got chef's recommendation - the deviled chicken. Well aside from good food, this is basically my idea of celebrating special occasions in a very less crowded establishment, serene and tranquil ambience plus scenic views. 

It was a simple celebration yet packed with good memories especially with my loved ones. 








Monday, June 16, 2014

INNER HARBOR, BALTIMORE

Before heading back home in New Jersey from our tour to Niagara, we decided to  pass by at Maryland to visit Baltimore city, which is my sister's favorite. Well, I dont know why. It was another long 7 hours drive to Baltimore so we had to spend a night in the city.

Baltimore is one pretty city. The inner harbor is where one of the city's center of attraction. Restaurants, parks, museum, aquarium, theatre are just some of the establishments around plus the nice view of the harbor. There were too many local tourists when we arrived.

With the two kids along, we first went to the National Aquarium to enjoy marine life before strolling the inner harbor.


City view. 
 Harbor view.

 Some of the harbor's attractions.


 National Aquarium.


Some of the beautiful marine creatures inside the National Aquarium.



Aside from marine life, there are also reptiles, amphibians and birds.

 Enjoying the harbor view.

Some 30 minutes from Baltimore is Bolger Center also in Maryland where we spent a night. All the hotels in Baltimore area were all fully booked that time because it was Memorial Day the following day and this the nearest hotel we checked in the internet with available rooms for us. Its a budget hotel but not bad at all for the place was gorgeous, peaceful and quiet.
 

Bolger Center is actually looks like a convention facility where there are about more than 200 rooms ( all single bed). Picture on top is the reception building and bottom is the hotel buildings.


For just about 70usd a night and with just 1 bed per room, we got ourselves one room per person. Nice.


One thing I really liked about this hotel is the large open spaces and well kept garden everywhere. It was a very relaxing atmosphere in this complex.


Thursday, June 12, 2014

THE MIGHTY NIAGARA FALLS

My sister planned a trip to Niagara falls on my second day in New Jersey. It was a long 7 hours trip to the border of USA and Canada where the falls is located.  So, we filled up the van with food, pillows, blankets and kid's stuffs for a more comfortable and enjoyable ride. During the travel, the kids were busy on their toys, ipads and videos while my parents and sister were always on good naps. I was awake all the time and just enjoying the beautiful sceneries along the way. It was my brother in law who's driving by the way. And talking about driving, we were caught by police for overspeeding when we were approaching Niagara town. I just thought it was exciting and realized how road discipline is a serious thing in America. It was an experience anyway.

Im sure everybody knows Niagara Falls. It is one of America's top tourist destination. All along i thought it was just about the big falls but little did I know that it is also a beautiful park. Aside from locals, there were tourists, mostly Indians, arriving by buses. The first thing that we did when we arrived in the area was to look for a hotel. We checked in at Sheraton Hotel which is just a walking distance to the falls. And after unloading our stuffs and freshening up ourselves a bit, we immediately went to the falls.


The fascinating sceneries along the way going to Niagara.

We had a stop over somewhere in Pennsylvania for some quick lunch at this local diner.


The breathtaking view of the falls as viewed from New York side. The other side (with the buildings) is Ontario, Canada.
At nightime, the falls is illuminated and there's some fireworks display.

Taken very early in the morning. This was my first time for me to get so close with a rainbow.

With my dad while having some early morning walks on the park.

Beautiful gardens.

A cute garbage looter.


With my dad and brother in law.


The Rainbow bridge that connects USA and Canada.

Where we stayed for a night.

The billowing mist from the falls is very visible from my hotel room.


My hotel room.

A boat tour called Maid of the Mist is the main attraction in Niagara. For a fee of 17 usd per head, you will get at close with the mighty falls and get a little wet because of the strong mist. Raincoat will be provided though as part of the fee. The tour is only about 30 mins but the experience is something to remember.


Our ticket to the boat ride.

This is where you ride the boat. Blue raincoat indicates people on the American side while yellow raincoat indicates Canada side.

Groupie and selfie shots.

The rocky bottom of the falls.

The mighty falls.

The towering elevator shaft to descend to the boarding area.

The yellow raincoat indicates people from the Canada side and they have their own boarding area on their side as well.