Had to go on yet another business trip – this time to Manila – on the weekend of 9 Jun 2007. This trip was made all the more interesting by the fact that I was born there and had not been back for almost 28 years. More specifically, I was born at St Luke’s Hospital in Quezon City during the time when the late President Fidel Marcos was still mayor of St Juan. I was too young to remember this, of course. 😀
As I had not been back for such a long time, I knew that I had to take some nice photos to show my parents. For that, I armed myself with Merv’s trusty Nikon D80 DSLR camera and equally potent but intimidating looking 70-200mm F/2.8 lens. For those who don’t know how this lens looks like, it is almost as long as my forearm, and fatter! In fact, thanks to my equipment, I even got into an interesting conversation with an air stewardess as I was taking this photo.
One of Philippine’s many many many islands.
SIA Girl: Hi, are you a professional photographer?
Me: Noleh, I just take for fun.
SIA Girl: Oh, your camera looks very big and powerful.
Me: Yah! (I then spend the next 15 mins blabbering non-stop about the advantages of a DSLR and its system of interchangeable lenses and bodies)
SIA Girl: So complicated… (at this point politely excusing herself to avoid passing out)
In retrospect, I should have just suppressed the geek in me and asked her to help me take a picture instead. There’s nothing like fond memories of sitting in a nearly empty Business Class munching away on steak with a glass of champagne in one hand. Ok, so maybe it was just sparkling apple juice but still. 😛
Jeepney! Cheapest form of transport in Manila.
Though my schedule was very intense, thank God, I still managed to squeeze in a few hours of time to take photos. Thanks to a colleague’s recommendation, we visited Intramuros, a famous historical area in Manila. We certainly weren’t disappointed, having had a chance to take pictures of Fort Santiago and Manila Cathedral. Later in the evening, we also headed down to Manila Bay, where the sunset is reputed to be one of the best in the world. Unfortunately, due to overly cloudy skies, there wasn’t much of one in the end.
Other highlights of the trip included the amazing buffet breakfast at Shangri-La Hotel, tasting authentic Filipino food and listening to live music at the Green Belt.
Lastly, more photos here!