Archive for the ‘Family & Friends’ Category

Here with are at Kebab King after watching “Singh is King“. Food was good, service was lousy. Still, having dinner with friends is great!

We arrived safely back to Manila yesterday from our 4 night, 5 day trip to Puerto Princesa, Palawan. It was wonderful, to say the least. The weather was very cooperative and the sun did let us enjoy our adventures to the different tourist destinations within Puerto Princesa. There were places where we went that made you feel that you were in a National Geographic documentary; from the view going to the Underground River and the Underground River trip itself to literally swimming with a thousand fishes and admiring the sea life that Palawan has to offer. Of course, food was essential and treated ourselves with the freshest sea food we could find; lobsters, Blue Marlins, tuna, Shrimps, Parrot fish, flat fish and more.

We’ve also had our share of mini “casualties”. Those very territorial fishes near the shore would bite you once you get near them resulting in my sister’s bite mark on the leg from the said fish. Xiane would also suffer being stung on the ear by a jellyfish while my other sister got stung on her leg. With the sudden onset of low tide, I found myself trapped in a bed of dead corals and rocks and scratched my right leg trying to avoid hitting any of the corals. Still, it was fun!

I’m still processing the photos we took and would post them here as well show you the complete set on our Gallery once I do finish with them. As it is, my family is already harassing me to give them a copy of the photos. And I’ll probably be blogging about our trip in detail once I get time. Need to get some zzzzzzsss….

We went to the Ark of Avilon on the 23rd of June, after checking out of Lancaster Suites at about 10:30 a.m. . We didn’t really know where it was so we asked the receptionist where it is located and found out that is was just beside Tendiesitas and Fun Ranch in Pasig.

Ark of Avilon is basically a small zoo. We found that place to be great as it was clean and the animals were well taken care of. It really wasn’t that big and the animals weren’t that many but the place was quite enjoyable especially that there were just 3 more families at the Ark of Avilon. Children can feed the goats, rabbits, guinea pigs, and tortoises. You’ll also be able to meet Colleen the Orangutan and touch the donkey and the snake. Interesting animals include the Owls, the Beaver (which we thought was an Otter till we realized later on), the albino Macaque (Philippine Monkey), and the Leopard. Entrance to Ark of Avilon costs Php200 (about 20QR). They’ll stamp your wrist so you can go out and go back anytime of the day. I do recommend the place as kids would surely enjoy being close to the animals and be able to feed them.

Ark of Avilon


We’ve been planning for a small party for Xianelle since last month. Since we were going home on the 19th of June, 2 days from Xiane’s actual birthday, we decided that she’ll just have a small get-together party in Makati on the 22nd.

On the day itself, the weather was really bad as there was a typhoon rampaging and signal no. 3 was raised in Manila. We had to take the 1 ½ hour trip so we were really hesitant if we were going to push through or not. We were to leave at 6:30 a.m. but pushed it to 11 as the winds were quite scary. By 11, the winds have gone down and so we braved the storm. We got to Manila at 1:00 as I had to drive slowly than usual as the winds and rain on the highway was terrible. Some of our guests (our relatives) have already eaten, which was good as it was way past our expected start. We had a cake for Xiane, spaghetti, morcon, ice cream, pansit and more. The kids played while the adults chatted. It’s seldom that we get together for occasions like this so we try to make the most of it. Even though the weather didn’t really cooperate, everyone came and stayed. By 5 p.m., we had to say goodbye as we still need to find Lancaster Suites in Shaw Boulevard, where we were to spend the night, as we planned to go round Manila the next day.


10:00 to 11 a.m. – We take Xiane to the dentist for her appointment. I finish all office necessities and handovers before leaving work early. We get home to make sure all appliances are turned-off and that we didn’t forget anything that should be included in our luggage.

11:00 to 12 noon – I bring down our baggage (all 7 of them!) from the 3 floor to the building door. Had to take a quick shower and change clothes. The airport taxi comes at exactly 30 minutes before 12 noon. Experienced no traffic delays going to the airport.

1 p.m. to 2 p.m. – We get to check in easily and bought some DV tapes in Duty Free. Was tempted to buy a ticket to win 1 Million Dollars but decided against it as the ticket costs 950QR. We got hungry and ate at the food center. Mavis bought water which was 10QR each! Check-in was at 1:45 and again, no delays.

2 p.m. to 3 p.m. – We had to ride a bus to get to our plane. We got seated on seats 18D (aisle), 18E, 18F which was close to the exit. Flight QR/PR644 took off on time.

3 p.m. to 4 p.m. – Xiane’s AVOD (Audio Video on Demand) remote was acting up. Took me some minutes before she got to watch Garfield. I looked at the other movies being shown but already watched most of them (jumper, 27 Dresses, Spiderwick Chronicles) so I settled to watching reruns of FRIENDS. Mavis slept as her AVOD system was not working properly. We’re really disappointed with Qatar Airways for not making sure their AVOD works properly.

Food is served! I had beef with rice while Xiane and Mavis had chicken. Food was ok as we were all hungry.

4 p.m. to 10 p.m. – After Xiane finishes her film in the AVOD and one from the Archos, we all slept. We woke up some hours later to pee and freshen up. My AVOD is now completely dead so no more FRIENDS for me. Xiane’s AVOD also conks out. We were faced with blank screens! So off to wonderland again hoping to forget the pain that I’m starting to feel on my butt.

10 p.m. (3 a.m. Manila Time) – We were served our breakfast of Fish Fillet and Garlic Rice. I kept asking Mavis the time and when we expect to land.

11:45 p.m. (4:45 a.m. Manila Time) – Our plane lands smoothly. We pass the immigration counter without hassle and wait for 30 minutes more to get our bags. We see my mom, dad and sis walking towards us as we descend the walkway towards the exit. We head off for breakfast again!

2 p.m. (7 a.m. Manila Time) – We went to Mavis’ aunt in JP Rizal to give her some dates the Mavs brought her. We went to Duty Free Fiesta to buy some stuff for my aunts in Makati as for our own family as well.

7 p.m. (12 noon Manila Time)  We were eating (again) lunch at my grandfather’s (dad’s side) in Makati. We left at around 1:15 p.m. for our supposed to be 1 ½ hour trip to Angeles, a city north of Manila, where we will be staying with my parents for the next few weeks.


About our blog

It's been 10 years since the San Juan Family started their blog documenting their lives in this little spot called Qatar. Follow Chris, Mavis and Xianelle as they share what Doha has to offer.

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