Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam

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We spent 4 days in Ho Chi Minh, formerly called Saigon. However, frankly speaking, in all of my travels, this is the first time that I have witnessed a heavy traffic due to the packed lines of motorcycles.

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But if you really want to soak up local life and culture, the best way to do is to walk! Most of the museums, tourist sights and markets are walking distance from one another. Though we didn’t really walk because majority of my family preferred the comfort of riding in a bus.

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First stop: War Remnants Museum

We always like to start our first day of vacation with a city tour before anything else! The bus took us to the War Remnants Museum which had exhibits relating to the Vietnam War (called the American War in Vietnam).

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“Attention for duty, sir!” Right outside the museum stood the relics of war. American tanks…

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Oil pulling – take care of your teeth

Open Google and type ‘oil pulling’.coconut-1123738.jpg

I know you’re too lazy, but that’s ok, stay here. I only asked you to do it, becasue you would see how many websites and articles there are about oil pulling. But here, I will tell you about my journey with this healthy habit.

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Queen of Hearts

Queen Of Hearts

By: Kevin Norbert G. Lopez

 

You’re not here yet I can feel you.

You’re miles away but it feels as if you’re nigh.

I carry a deck with you, which one, have I no clue.

Guess this, guess that, again and again and I sigh.

 

You’re a person of noble birth,

In a world, only yours, we call earth.

You will always be in my heart.

You’re heart, t’was my desire from the start.

 

You have a king and a jack and an ace,

Nine more hearts in line…

Towards your heart I’m in a race.

With others, I could only wish you were mine.

 

Seventy-two you are in all,

Which one of you would I call

The Queen of Hearts…?

The Latest Bombing in Davao City

THE LATEST BOMBING IN DAVAO CITY

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

 

Now it can be told… the latest bombing in Davao City showed that some Filipinos cannot make themselves feel for the crime victims in their effort to discredit the effort of Duterte to clip illegal drug trade and other form of criminality, in the bud. Instead of sympathizing with and show compassion to the victims, they instead, released unsavory remarks about the “arrogance” of Duterte. For them, the “courage” of the new president to clash head-on with the drug lords and other criminals in the country is a show of “arrogance”. For these detractors, the “laxity” of the past presidents as regards the various menace of the society is “piety” which for them cannot be replaced by any option even in the face of the dreaded threat by the criminals to totally destroy the country’s future.

 

The latest bombing also showed the inutility of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) as instead of dipping its finger in the investigation, it instead, reacted to the declaration of the “State of Lawless Violence” by president Duterte. Obviously, the CHR does not seem to stand on its mandate to protect the rights of the victims of criminalities. What they seem to protect are the rights of those who commit crimes…PEOPLE, WHO BY THEIR CRIMINAL ACTS AGAINST THE INNOCENT, HAVE CEASED TO BE HUMANS!

 

The seemingly lack of interest by the international social media should be treated as a blessing in disguise. The incident in Davao is an obvious isolated smear campaign against the administration and has been anticipated by the military as Abu Sayyaf’s reaction to its incessant campaign to pulverize this terroristic group….some sort of a diversionary tactic. The pronouncement was made by the military after it has reaped partial success against the group. It was purely a terroristic act that, not even first-world nations like the United States, France, and Germany cannot check 100%.

 

As the State of Lawless Violence is intended for the whole country, every Filipino should show utmost cooperation. Detractors should stop messing it up by spreading rumors about its being a precursor of the Martial Law which the president himself, has already denied many times. This is the time for the whole nation to stand as one against criminality in any form.

Just Like a Twinkling Star (Tribute to St. Teresa of Calcutta)

A reblogged poem for St. Teresa of Calcutta on the occasion of her canonization today…

 

Just Like a Twinkling Star

(Tribute to Mother Teresa)

 

By Apolinario B Villalobos

 

Like a tranquil smoothly flowing stream

that ripples at the gentle touch of a falling leaf

and nudge of a rock down its path

your silence so unpredictable

and fragile like a thin sheet of ice

cracks even at the feather’s touch.

 

But just like a twinkling star

your light constantly guides

the wayward souls that roam the earth,

they who need a helping hand to be there –

a place they have been longing for

but just hindered by unseen hands.

 

You untiringly

and unselfishly extend a hand

so that those who have fallen

may again stand.