Archive for April, 2013

Stargazing, Starstruck

Posted: April 14, 2013 in and Explorations, Trips, Visits

UPDATE! – “Hoorah!” , shall I say because there’s an update? 🙂 –

Here’s my second tour. This one’s a bit more special, because of the new pics I got, courtesy of the GOTO Telescope, and my new toy, a Canon 1200D DSLR

IMG_2764 IMG_2760 IMG_2758 IMG_2759

Check the pics here!

My Second Tour at the PAGASA Astronomical Observatory (04/21/2014)

My first ever trip to an astronomical observatory. I must say this is one of the many trips that I have gone for the first time that got me immediately fascinated with. Another childhood dream put into realization.

We were guided in the tour, with our resident Astronomer, Mr. Nico Mendoza, a City of Mandaluyong Science High School graduate of Batch 2007, who also happens to be one of the first three graduates of BS Astronomy Technology in the country. He invited us on a special, private tour inside the Philippine Atmospheric and Astronomical Administration (PAGASA – the G part, which stands for Geophysical is already removed from their administration and is now handled by PHIVOLCS, but they decided to put the letter in the acronym anyway. It would not sound good if they do remove it! LOL)

Was it special? In many ways, yes! 🙂

I have always been fascinated by the heavenly bodies. From my younger years, even when I was in preschool, looking at the pictures of galaxies, planets, and other heavenly bodies from encyclopedias (internet was not yet that available), up to  when I am already am already an adult, watching documentaries from Discovery Channel and Nat Geo, fascinated me.   Good thing I also graduated from a high school that focused on these sciences. There was even one time, during the 2010 Lunar Eclipse, that I stayed up all night, taking a screen shot from  a live video simulcast from an international astronomical website, to create a time lapse slide show of the lunar phases during an eclipse.

And I thought I was already in content with those photos and videos. Until last night.

Having  the chance to look at these amazing creations from the telescope with my naked eye is just an amazing, exhilarating experience. It kinda refreshed my fascination with the stars and whatever else is found there in the outer space. You guys have got to see it for yourselves, as the photos in my Facebook wall would not suffice.

Me and Nico arrived about an hour earlier than the others. While we were taking a look at the moon from the telescopes, I couldn’t help my self but ask him about the things that he does as an astronomer. He personally does not want to be called as an astronomer, as someone who uses telescopes, points them to the stars and assists tourists, who basically has not undergone and earned a degree can also be called one. Well, in fairness to Sir Nico, his credentials can put him on a higher level than some “astronomers”.

Me and Nico also happen to share a common ground of graduating college from the same University and mentored by the awesome Doctor Jesus Torres of Rizal Technological University – me on Political Science, and Nico on Astronomy Technology – a great coincidence, indeed.

And being a space fan that I am, I found myself finishing almost every sentence that Nico started while we were having a quick chitchat, as we were waiting for the others. We were two individuals sharing the same interests,and for me, it was a privilege to be given a lecture by one credible person who knows a lot about something you’d like to know a lot about.

Enter a caption

Here’s Nico, while adjusting the view of the telescope to check on Planet Saturn. The GOTO telescope is the only one, and biggest telescope in the country, with a 45cm diameter lens. It was donated to the Philippines by Japan about a decade ago.

We were also given a brief, yet very informative lecture about astrophotography, by one of our companions in the trip, who happens to have a lot of knowledge about cameras and DSLRs, with the help of Sir Nico’s modules – now I get to appreciate photos more, by understanding the technical stuff and how they affect the output of each photo.

Saturn and its moons

A more focused image of the ringed planet, Saturn

A view of the moon as seen from the observatory

This is one good way to bond with your friends. I guess I am just privileged to have a friend like Sir Nico that we are given the opportunity like this. Normally, you would need to ask permission from PAGASA Observatory for any visit, and they won’t be able to let you use any viewing equipment without enough supervision.

When sleeping over gets too overrated, you get to hang out with your friends (and new found ones) and experience a tour like this!

Here’s the album from our first visit, over four years ago:

Star Gazing – PAGASA Observatory, UP Diliman, Quezon City

Lastly, it could be a good place to date, too! Given that you are allowed all access to the observatory, or you may simply set yourselves outside looking at the stars, peeping from the scopes from time to time, strumming on your guitar while laying down on a makeshift mat beside a special someone looking straight up the stars.

A heavenly view matched with some acoustic music? Your date can never go wrong.

Okay, enough with me being such a romantic! 🙂

We promise to be back to the observatory, and hopefully, on a night when a special astronomical event will be taking place.


Haranang Karoling

Posted: April 6, 2013 in Rhymes

First published on Thursday, 15 October 2009, but the words were written a year ago before it got published.

I was hoping someone would collaborate with me on this one. But up until now, it still remains as a rhyme. Can someone put music on these words already!? 😀

(As inspired by PNE and Kamikazee)

nilalamig at mga daliri ko ay namimitig,

disyembre na ngunit sa larawan mo pa rin nakatitig

marami nang nagkarol, sa aso ay nagpahabol

kaunti man ang aking barya, ayos lang kasi


kahit wala nang lobo, kahit walang regalo

kapag nariyan ka’y araw araw ang pasko

kahit na wala si santa, mga ninong ko’y nagtago na

saki’y laging pasko kapag kapiling ka

kumpleto ang simbang gabi, basta’t ikaw ang katabi

aakyatin ang pinakamatayog na krismas tree

at wag lamang hihilingin na abutin pa ang bituin

kahit kay narda ay aking dadalhin sayo kasi


kahit wala nang lobo, kahit walang regalo

kapag nariyan ka’y araw araw ang pasko

kahit na wala si santa, mga ninong ko’y nagtago na

saki’y laging pasko kapag kapiling ka


bitbit aking gitara, kasama na ang banda

pangarap ko sa paskong ito’y matugtog ang aking kanta

at sana’y marinig, ang musika’t ang tinig,

ang bawat araw ay pasko sayong pag -ibig.


ngayong noche buena, sana ay kasalo ka

habang nagniningning mga parol sayong bintana

ikaw ay aayain, sa balkonahe ay dinggin

ang harana kong ito’y pang krismas karol din…Ü

The Number Three

Posted: April 6, 2013 in Rhymes

First published on on Sunday, 18 October 2009. CHEESY! But I was full of sentiments when I wrote this, three years back. LOL


Three blocks, that’s how far you are, but near to my heart.
We wished we’d end up forever, but did we ever make a start?
And on the Third of November I still can remember
The moment when I first held you while you wept on my shoulder.

It’s been more than three years, yet it seemed just yesterday
When you whispered those three words in the air.
I asked you to repeat them to me, but you hesitated,
Oh, that three longest weeks, the best… the sweetest.

I sought for you just three months ago.
Was just thinking of having someone to talk the tears away
Little did I know, my heart stayed with you, and alone I have gone astray.
From that moment I knew… my heart was home… my heart was home.

Can you give me my heart back if you wish not to stay?

The longest three blocks.
The sweetest three weeks.
The Third of November.

And this is my third year….of longing.. wishing.. hoping.
Will we ever make it to the third chapter of our love?

Love is sweeter the second time around, as they say.
I long not for that.. Give them all they want best.
For me, just a third time for love, and I’d want nothing else.

One Random Morning

Posted: April 6, 2013 in Rhymes

First published on  Wednesday, 18 November 2009


Walking on his usual path home
With a pair if earphones embracing his ears
Listening to the loud music that only he hears
He passes by the church, his feet walk him in it.

Stepped on the marble tiles, stared on the altar from afar
“Why am I here?” he asked, as if deciding for a war
He sat on a pew, beside a random sleeping grandmother
Muted his music, bent his knees, went down on the kneeler.

He realized he has not prayed for the longest time.
He clenched his hands together, held them in front of his face,
Started to mutter a prayer, of thanks, forgiveness and grace.
His eyes closed, he felt a tear fell… and another.. and another…

It’s been two weeks after his birthday.. This man has granted his Creator’s wish. Unknowingly.

By Seth Plate

Posted: April 6, 2013 in Rhymes

First pulished on Monday, 17 August 2009 (as inspired by one of my most favorite movies. Need I mention the title?)

*If that fallen angel were a poet..

There was never a night when she came

I always think of her awake, every day’s just the same.

Yet every day is just like a dream that’s never coming true

I never want to wake up, but I know someday I have to.

The touch of her hand;

The weight of her head on my shoulder;

The scent of her hair makes me want to kiss her.

Just for this night, I wish it’d never end.

The smile on her lips;

The look in her pretty bright eyes;

The way she talks to me makes me want to fantasize.

Just for this night, I wish it’d never end.

But if this night should end, and tomorrow she’ll be gone,

And all that happened will just remain in my memories;

If we’ll never ever meet –

“I’d rather have a a breath of her hair;

A kiss from her mouth;

A touch of her hand

Than eternity without it.”

Just one.

– Seth Plate


Posted: April 6, 2013 in Rhymes

First published on Sunday, 16 August 2009 at 12:08

(This is officially, the first and only song I have ever made by far.)

I have some ambitious attempts of the song uploaded on Youtube and up to now, I haven’t decided yet which version is better. 🙂

I have recently recorded one on Soundcloud. 🙂


Isang gabing kasama ka

Nakatitig lang sa iyong mga mata

Bakit mo pa nagawa

Sa akin na ibigin ka kung…


Mawawala ka lang,

Nang ganun-ganon na lang?



Pinilit mang pigilan ang damdamin

Mahirap man pero sige, tuloy pa rin

At kahit pa anong gawin

Sinisigaw ng puso ko’y ikaw pa rin



Bakit ba di natin magawang

Turuan ang pusong huwag magwala?

Bakit ba di maaring pagbawalang

Pigilan ang pusong huwag masaktan?



Walang ibang nais marinig

Langit sa akin ang iyong mga tinig

At ang iyong mga ngiti

Sa akin ay kumiliti ngunit…



Mawawala ka lang,

Nang ganun-ganon na lang…



Ngayon wala na sa ‘king piling

Pag-ibig mo pa rin ang siyang hinihiling

Sa awit kong ito’y di na malilimutan

Minsan sa buhay ko ika’y napadaan…

Sutsot ng Laman

Posted: April 6, 2013 in Rhymes

First published on Sunday, 16 August 2009

(one of the most intriguing stuff I have ever made… lol)


Hindi mapakali kapag hindi nadarama
Ang tamis at init tuwing kapiling ka
Nawawala sa sarili, mundo’y isinasantabi
Maangkin lamang ang susi ng langit.

Bawat hinga ay may himig, bawat bulong ay hiyaw,
Milya-milyang abot ng kamay sa paggalaw.
Mga mata’y nanlilisik, umaalab
Hanggang sa madama na ang liyab.

Subalit bakt nagtataka?
Nananabik sa iyong halik, pagkatapos ay wala na.
Nilalamon ang saril,
Sinisindihan ang damdamin, hanggang sa maglaho na.

Bumabaon sa ala-ala
Nababaliw kapag naiisip ka
Ang tikman, sa iba’y kasalanan,
Walang magagwa, di na mapipigilan pa

Lahat ay kalilimutan, konsyensya’t kaluluwa –
Ipagpapalit, makuha lamang ang ligaya.