Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Our England Vacation

Greetings to all, it’s so good to be back home! We arrived safely from our England trip on Sunday afternoon. It was raining in London when we left and we returned to a yet another wet city of Boston, rain was the last thing we need .


Our flight to London was smooth overall with only few delays. It was very exhausting though with all the new security procedures in place, things took longer than expected. We queued for an hour just to check in our luggages. Logan Aiport in Boston was systematic though so we didn’t have any problem checking in and going through security check. However Manchester Airport in UK was the exact opposite, it was very chaotic; everybody seemed not to know where to go, there was a lot of confusion. Nobody was directing the passengers on where to queue. We ourselves just went with the flow; we saw a long queue and just joined in it without even knowing if it was the line for security check. If you ask anybody in the line what the queue was for they didn’t know either. It was so disorganized, no system at all, it was really horrendous.

Though we took a direct flight back to Boston, it was even more exhausting. Going back to US was a lot stricter; there were security checks in every point of entry - upon checking in; on the security check area itself; and on the gate. Security check was really very thorough at the gate. A security crew went through all my stuffs, checked every nook and cranny of my briefcase and all the pockets, and requested to turn on digicam and laptop. Strictly no cosmetics in any form were allowed on board even if lipsticks have been previously allowed in one of their announcements, so my Christian Dior lipstick was confiscated. Only one carry-on was allowed and no extra purse, so I had to stick everything in my briefcase.

There were so many hassles if I may say so but I didn’t mind it at all, it’s better to be safe than sorry. If there was one positive thing that resulted in this new security procedure, is that it’s easier and quicker to get off the plane now, the overhead compartments were almost empty with carry-ons due to so much restrictions.


London was a very busy and exciting city and I enjoyed it a lot. However I call it a place where all languages are spoken except English because you hardly hear anybody speaks English. We stayed at the Hilton Paddington London which is just across an Underground Station and beside Paddington Train Station so it’s a real convenient location. We arrived on a Saturday afternoon and we pretty much just strolled around and checked out the area. On Sunday we heard mass at Westminster Cathedral then toured in the Tower of London. On Monday we’ve met with Rob’s nephew John and went to Trafalgar Square, had late lunch at Chinatown and shopped some in Soho district. We had margarita at Hard Rock Café and viewed their collections of musical instruments of famous artists like John Lennon, Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix at their basement vault. On Tuesday we went to St. Paul’s Cathedral where Prince Charles and Princess Diana got married but unfortunately cameras are not allowed inside the cathedral. Afterwards we went to Covent Garden, watched the streets performers and had lunch of their famous pasty at West Cornwall Pasty. At night we went to visit John and his girlfriend Pipper and had dinner at their house in Chesham, a town north of London. On Wednesday we went to Buckingham Palace to watch the changing of the guards. We were very close to the gate but it’s too hard to move around because it’s too crowded. We didn’t get the chance to enter the palace because there was a pandemonium of tourists lining up to get tickets so we just skipped it. We just went to British Museum and Knightsbridge to shop at Harrods.

The next day we decided to just have breakfast in our room so Rob went out to get something to eat while I prepared to get ready for the day. When I was about to take a shower an announcement in the hotel’s PA came on announcing to vacate the area immediately. It didn’t register to me right away and I thought it was just a drill, and then the announcement became persistent. I put back my PJ’s and looked out in the corridor and saw people hurrying up to leave their rooms then it suddenly dawned on me that there must be a fire and then a certain panic kicked in. Believe it or not I was still debating on whether to put on my bra coz I couldn’t find a robe to cover myself so I just grabbed my sweatshirt, put on my flip-flops, grabbed my purse and headed out. All the doors in the corridors automatically shut off and it was like a maze from our room to the exit. As soon as I got out of the hotel, everybody was led to the side of the building by firemen and policemen and after few minutes it was declared safe to go back and it was only a false alarm. Somebody foolish must have just smoked in bed and caused the alarm to set off leaving everybody to panic Then people flooded the lobby, I went to Starbucks to look for Rob while he went back to the lobby to look for me, what a way to start the day. Later that day we had lunch in Chinatown and had some drink in O’Neills Pub, and then afterwards we strolled at Leicester Square, Hyde Park and Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain. The next day Friday, we got up early to join a tour to Windsor Castle, Stonehenge and Bath, it was a nice experience to go back in the days and then we capped the tour for some champagne in the Assembly Room. On our last day in London before leaving for Liverpool, we went to see Abbey Road, strolled down Soho district again and had lunch and watched soccer in a pub. Then we took a 5 hour bus ride to Liverpool with nephew John to visit Rob’s dad and relatives.


Life in Liverpool is quite slow and dragging at least in my opinion anyway. It was always raining every night and most of the days. We didn’t do much unlike in London, but I met most of Rob’s relatives and they were very nice. On our first day we toured around Rob’s dad’s side of the family. In every house we went we had a cup of English tea with either shortbread, chocolate rolls or Jaffa cakes to drink it with. The tea was very good but I had so much of it that it kept me up all night. Good thing there was a good movie on TV so I just watched an old movie Cassandra Crossing till early dawn. It was a bank holiday when we got there so it was a long weekend and they had this Music Festival in downtown Liverpool. We went to see Matthew Street Festival and we had fun. Major streets were closed down and concerts were playing in different stages in the streets, there were also various rides and beers were served just ererywhere. A lot of people were walking with bottles of beer in their hands, most of them very young and wasted. We went to The Cavern Club where the Beatles first played before they became famous, you can hear Beatles songs being sang live everywhere. The next day we drove to Burnley, Lancashire to visit Rob’s mom’s side of the family; it was quite a ways to get there. We also drove down memory lane; we went to the house where Rob was born and another house where he spent his grade school years. We also visited the school where he studied; he was quite amazed at how the place had changed. We visited Burnley twice, and the next time around we went to see the country side of Pendle Hill, oh the view was so amazingly breathtaking. First we had lunch of steak pie, chips and steamed veggies and black currant cheese cake in Harper Inn then we drove to Witches Galore to buy some souvenirs, then we spent most of the day driving around the hills to breathe the fresh scent of the grass, watch the sheeps, cows and horses in the farms. It’s good to be in the country side once in a while, very laid back, and cool. The next day we went to Knowsley’s Safari Park and drove by where wild animals live. The following day we went to downtown Liverpool to see the Metropolitan Cathedral. On Saturday Sept. 2nd, we left for London again and stayed at The Thistle close to Heathrow Airport as we were leaving the following day for Boston. The day we left Liverpool, rain was pouring down and we got really soaked because we walked three blocks from train station to where the bus was parked and waiting dragging our luggages. Oh gee that was quite an experience and we almost didn’t make it on time.

Overall we had a great time in England, I enjoyed all the places we visited and loved the hospitality of Rob’s relatives. Despite the hassles of new airport security procedures, we still had great fun in this trip. So there my friends, I hope you enjoyed reading my post and the pictures I shared. It’s good to be back home!


Thursday, August 17, 2006

England Here We Come

To all my blogger friends and avid readers, there will be no updates here for the next two weeks as I am flying to England with my husband Rob tomorrow evening. This will be the last leg of our summer get-aways before getting back to 'serious business as usual' again . Stay tuned for our vacation photos, I hope to post them as soon as we get back.

Please pray for our safe trip, thanks. See you all soon .


Monday, August 14, 2006

A Weekend of Picnic and Camping

I had a pretty busy weekend last week, but it was a fun-filled one and I had a great time. On Saturday Rob and I attended a picnic with our close friends in Demarest Lloyd State Park in Dartmouth, MA. It was our 2nd time to hold a picnic like this and we agreed to make this an annual summer activity. Unlike last year where we only had a simple picnic - eating, chatting and walking on the beach; this year we also played bingo and badminton and some stayed through the night and camped at the O'Connors 'campground'. The group was also bigger this year with the addition of new friends like Lea, Joan, Khriss, Yen, Jason and Josie.

The weather was perfect, it was sunny but comfortable, with cool breeze. The children had fun playing on the sand and blowing bubbles in the air. We had a surprise birthday cake for Lea who celebrated her birthday on August 1st. However, we didn't know that our new friend Jason, husband of Josie who just moved to MA from Nova Scotia was actually celebrating his birthday on that exact date. It was their first time to join the group so they must be too shy to tell us about it but had they told us, we could have just added another candle on the cake. Click here to see the pics of our picnic.

Late in the afternoon we called it a day and proceeded to the O'Connors to start a yet another exciting night of camping, bonfire and smores. As soon as we arrived we started looking for a good spot and then began setting up our tents. Barb went home first to pick up their camping gears and ran some errands, when they arrived Tim immediately set up their tent just behind ours. At the far end of Michelle's property, Mike set up a pile of woods for bonfire later in the evening.

Michelle made a delicious dinner of baked scallops, spaghetti with meatballs and garlic bread, sinigang na buto-buto (pork bones stew) , salted eggs with tomatoes, fried rice and the most-hated-but-very-tasty danggit (dried fish) . I learned that when you hate your neighbors and you want to kick them out of the neighborhood, all you have to do is fry danggit on your deck everyday . Because as soon as I fry that danggit, all the americans dispersed and disappeared, ha ha, and I overheard Rob who wanted to use the bathroom on his way up to the deck remarked "Oh My God what is that smell?", and he immediately retreated back to the ground . Poor americans, they don't know what they're missing .

After dinner we proceeded to the bonfire area to make marshmallows and chocolate smores, they were yummy not only kids enjoyed them but the adults as well. Then Michelle took out glow sticks, glow sunglasses and sparkles and the children played with them in the dark. We also put a glow stick around Laddie's neck so we could better see him in the dark. Laddie was enjoying the cool and quiet night until Bryan lighted up firecrackers , immediately Laddie jumped up Rob's lap, shaking and wanted to climb all the way up. Poor doggie he just hates loud sounds such as that and thunder. Towards the night there were meteors showers but most of us didn't witness them only Rob and Mike. After they said they did see meteors, everybody slouched on their chairs and looked up till our necks hurt, then we finally quit and forget about it .

It was a lovely starry, cool and quiet night. We called it a night and went to sleep in our respective tents. Our tent became too cold as we tied the flap of the tent up for ventilation, but we slept good, till little Jay-jay screamed in his sleep apparently having some nightmares. Before the camping, Barb and I were teasing about our husbands' snoring, that we might not be able to sleep when the guys start snoring like an orchestra , little did we know that it was tiny Jay-jay who would keep us awake. Click here to see the pics of our camping.

Overall I had a real great time. I enjoyed the company of dear friends and its good to break away from the routine of everyday life.


Monday, August 07, 2006

More on Fishing and Clam Digging

Last Friday Barb, Lanie and I were invited to lunch at our girlfriend Michelle's house. She was the one who invited us to go fishing two weeks ago. We had fresh fish sinigang, fried fish, itlog na maalat (salted eggs with tomatoes) and ginataang bilo-bilo for dessert. The food was so great and we had a good time chatting and listening to Lanie's vacation stories. Barb had to leave early to make dinner for Tim before he goes to work. But Lanie and I decided to stick around, snack on Michelle's freshly picked blueberries and wait for her husband Mike who by the way went fishing again with another group of friends. I wanted to see if Mike could catch better fish now that we were not around, . Anyway Mike and company caught really big ones and I just want to show you how big they were. Remember our fishing escapade from my last post before this one? Had the waters been calm and flat then, these are the kind of fish we could have caught. Click here.

On Saturday, Rob and I went out clam digging again with our friends Yen and Michael at Westerly, RI together with new recruits Lea, Josie, Khriss and Corrine. Actually Rob was not even thinking of coming because he's preparing for a presentation of his project, but I talked him into it with a promise that we will go home as soon as it's over and not go anywhere else. On our way to Yen's place where we will start our convoy, we got screwed up again by Mapquest , we couldn't find our way and we had to call Michael who had a lot of patience to give directions. So we got to the clamming area quite late and we only had 3 hours or so to dig before the high tide comes in. Everybody was so engrossed digging and didn't mind getting wet. I didn't want to get soaked up because I have my 'monthly visitor' so I decided to go back to shore and just eat pancit and biko that Josie brought . Good thing Josie went with me because the gang requested that we bring some back to them. On our way back just about few feet from the shore the water was up to my crease already so I decided to just stay behind.

I sat on the rocks by the shore waiting and having conversation with some guys riding their jet skis. Then when I looked out to check on the clamming gang I noticed that the water was above Rob's waist already so I thought that he might have not noticed that his wallet and cellphone were soaked in the water too. So I tried calling him and Lea but couldn't get through. True enough his wallet and cellphone got soaked and so was Lea's cellphone, they're not working anymore so that explains why my calls couldn't get through . Poor Rob and Lea they have to get new cellphones again. Good thing Lea's was still under warranty as she just got a new one but Rob has to really buy another one.

Anyway, we had a fun time clamming. Mike the pro got 48 clams while Rob an amateur got 25, well that's including what Lea and Josie dug up . They didn't get their share anymore so I promised to cook a good dish and share the food later. I made Linguine with Red Clam Sauce on Sunday and shared it with the girls. Here are the pictures of our clamming escapade.


Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Fishing Experience

Last Sunday, we finally experienced fishing with the O'connors together with the Hunts. For over two weeks we've been looking forward to the day and couldn't wait to see how much fish we could catch. I've never experienced fishing at all though Rob fished a few times while still in Connecticut, so I was so excited like a little child. With Laddie in tow, it would even be a great experience because he loves water so much, he would dive in freezing ponds without any warning but it's too difficult to get him into the shower .

The weather was so lovely, according to Mike the water was so calm and perfect for fishing. So at around 10:30 a.m. we sailed into the ocean, boats were everywhere, people were waving at us and we waved back, everybody seemed to be enjoying the perfect day. Michelle invited me to move to the front of the boat to see the view much better. I was scared at first because the boat was moving fast, and you have to maneuver around the side to get to the front, but she held me tight and guided my way through. Then Rob and Amber followed after awhile. The front was the best part of the boat, the feeling of the breeze touching our faces was exhilirating. But after sometime, the waters became rough and we bounced up and down, and it got a little bit scary. Amber got so scared so we had to move back at the back of the boat.

We were sailing fast and away from the shore, only one or two boats were now in sight, then Mike decided to stop, lowered the anchor, and checked the depth of the water. Mike has a GPS and another gadget to check the location of the fish. While we were anchored, the boat was really bouncy, the waters very rough, and the movement of the boat was very intolerable. It really made me dizzy, Kiefer was the first one to go. I was trying hard to control my feeling of sickness, looking away to the waters to calm myself and divert my mind from puking. Then Mike decided to sail much farther because our location was not good enough. When the boat was moving again, I felt a little better, then Mike assured me that my sickness will come to past after awhile. Then when we anchored again to finally stay there to fish, I got really sea sick, I couldn't hold it any longer, and I finally puked, . Oh geez that was really hard and embarrassing, but very relieving. I didn't know Barb also went.

Mike caught a big sea bass just in less than a minute, so the location was really perfect for real good fish. Then he caught two more but just released them back to the water because they're too small. He kissed them first before finally letting them go . Tim and Rob were not very lucky. Rob felt a bite on the hook but the fish got off before even yanked up. But later Michelle was begging Mike to sail back to the shore because we're getting sick one after the other. Mike kidded that next time only men will go fishing, and the women just stay along the shore . Then we docked for awhile on the shore to eat our lunch and grill the one and only fish we caught, it was really good. Tim, Mike and the kids got off the boat to refresh themselves in the waters. Tyler enjoyed the water so much he cried no end when he was pulled out of it to eat lunch. Poor Laddie wasn't able to swim because the boat was too high for him to climb back, and he's too heavy to be carried on and off the boat.

Overall if not for the picnic on the boat, I'd say fishing was not fun . Maybe if we went initially on shallow waters it would have been more fun. But the farther you go the better fish you can catch. But for first time fisher like I am, it would not matter what kind of fish I caught as long as I get any fish bite my bait . Next time shallow waters will be good enough for me if not I would be smarter to take motion sickness medicine before sailing.

Here are the pictures we took of our fishing experience.


Friday, July 28, 2006

Invasion of Michigan Beauties

We're lucky to be visited again by one of our online friends, another Michigan beauty, Carlota. Yesterday we finally met her in person together with her husband Tom and daughter Julie. We had a simple get-together at our very gracious host Barb's house. It was originally a lunch date but was extended till dinner because of our unending chit-chats . Barb was as usual an expert cook because she concocted a sumptuous dinner in a flash. After lunch, Tom took a much needed nap at the couch charging energy for another long drive back home, while the women took pictures and exhanged stories. I was very fond of Julie, she's so cute and very sweet and most of all was very willing for me to braid her hair . In the afternoon Amber arrived from her camp and instantly she and Julie connected and not long after were playing upstairs in Amber's bedroom. Tyler was grumpy after waking from his afternoon nap but later was in his usual naughtiness showing his antics. It was a great day and we had fun in the company of Carlotz, she was very nice and friendly. Here are some of the pics I took.


Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Summer Get-away in the Midwest

Hi guys, I hope everybody had a great 4th of July holiday weekend coz we did! We’re back from our summer get-away in the Midwest. At first I thought that it’s gonna be a boring trip because Rob always told me not to get my expectations too high since there’s not much to do or see in Indiana, all it has are long open flat fields. Then I asked him why plan a trip this long when there’ll be nothing to do anyway?

Indiana was where Rob and his family emigrated into from England and this was where he practically grew up. His first best buddy was Kris and then later Butch and Steve. They were a bunch of naughty boys with so many funny anecdotes to share; theirs was really one for the book. I enjoyed listening to their daring escapades in grade school to high school. Then in college they went separate ways and attended different universities, Rob went to Purdue University, but even then they never lost touch. Not even when Rob moved out to different states and later settled in Massachusetts, they still got-together a lot, usually on Thanksgivings and New Years.

Unexpectedly, I did enjoy my trip to Indy, not more because of the place but moreso because of Rob’s good friends, they were very warm and welcoming, I felt I was one with them from day one. This was the first time that I’ve ever met them in person except for our gracious host Butch whom I already met in NY in year 2000. Actually the place is not bad at all, it's easier to get around Indianapolis than Boston, but there's more to see in Boston. Here are some of the pictures we’ve taken during our Indy trip.

Since Chicago was only 3 hours away, we also decided to drive there to see my late best friend’s daughter Kitty but unfortunately she had to work so there was no chance for us to meet. On our way to Chicago we swung by Purdue University to drive down memory lane. I was hoping to check out the dorm where Rob used to stay at to take a pic of his name plate by the door of his room, but too bad we're not allowed to come in . Apparently the university puts nameplates of people who stayed in the dorm all the way and graduated. So you must be wondering like I do how much nameplates are there now on the door considering Rob graduated 30 years ago, . Anyway, we only stayed in downtown Chicago for a day but we’re able to join the Fireworks and Architectural & Historical cruises. Rob particularly enjoyed the Fireworks Cruise because of the open bar, . The trip was fun but it would have been more fun if we stayed longer to explore the city even more, maybe next time. Here are some of the pictures we took of Chicago.

BONUS TRACK: Two days before we left for Boston I talked to Barb and got the news that Kookie is coming to town. So we planned for a little get together to meet her and her family. We finally met today July 11th at International Buffet in Quincy, MA. This place is only 5 minutes away to where Lanie lives but unfortunately she was out on vacation to the Philippines, so she was not able to join us. TO KOOKIE -I’m so glad to finally meet and know you Kookie, I definitely had a great time with our chats and laughs. I didn’t know that you love crab so much, if you were just staying for more days we could have brought you to a much better place called Jasper’s Summer Shack in Boston where they serve real fresh crabs on Wednesdays. Maybe we should plan a much bigger get-together next time. Nice to meet you again Ms. Crabby! Here are few pics I took.


Friday, June 30, 2006

Where Are The Burns?

We’re leaving for Indiana and Illinois tomorrow and we’ll be gone for 9 days. Our 4-legged hairy son Laddie will be left behind and stay at a kennel close by so we’re gonna miss him a lot.

To all my dear blogger friends and avid silent readers, I won’t be posting here for the next 9 days but I promise to share a glimpse of our vacation when we get back. I hope to check you out too once in a while if I get the chance. Enjoy the 4th of July holiday and see you when we get back .


Sunday, June 04, 2006

BBQ Season

Since Memorial Day is the official kick-off of the BBQ season, this funny e-mail I got from my girlfriend Gail is so appropriate to remind us women of our role in the summer-long cookouts .

After 4 long months of cold and winter, we are finally coming up to summer and BBQ season. Therefore it is important to refresh your memory on the etiquette of this sublime outdoor cooking as it's the only type of cooking a real man will do, probably because there is an element of danger involved .

When a man volunteers to do the BBQ the following chain of events are put into motion:

1) The woman buys the food.
2) The woman makes the salad, prepares the vegetables, and makes dessert.
3) The woman prepares the meat for cooking, places it on a tray along with the necessary cooking utensils and sauces, and takes it to the man who is lounging beside the grill - Beer in hand.

Here comes the important part:

More routine....
5) The woman goes inside to organize the plates and cutlery.
6) The woman comes out to tell the man that the meat is burning. He thanks her and asks if she will bring another Beer while he deals with the situation .

Important again:

More routine.....
The woman prepares the plates, salad, bread, utensils, napkins, sauces and brings them to the table.
9) After eating, the woman clears the table and does the dishes.

And most important of all:
10) Everyone PRAISES the MAN and THANKS HIM for his cooking efforts .
11) The man asks the woman how she enjoyed "her night off." And, upon seeing her annoyed reaction, concludes that there's just no pleasing some women .

And so that's the story of our outdoor cooking life


Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Weekend in New York

Hi my friends, I was away for the weekend with Rob, and I thought I’d share with you the places we've been to and the things we did. Please read on and I hope you enjoy the trip too!

We had a long weekend in NY and it felt good to escape from household chores once in awhile, . I’ve been there at least five times, and each time I went there were particular things to do – to tour, to shop, to watch broadway shows or to entertain family and friends. This time, it was to apply for UK visa. For the past 2 years, my husband and I have been planning to visit his dad and relatives in England but for some reasons it keeps getting deferred for another time. This year it is finally coming through. Since I’m not a citizen yet I need a visa to visit England and another one to visit other European countries. The interview was very straightforward, the officer just asked me if this is my first time to visit England, and an hour later, I got the visa!

But of course we didn’t go to NY just for the visa, a lot of things happened in NY minute, . Another thing that Rob and I enjoy doing is EAT OUT (meaning pig-out ), we explored different restaurants in Chinatown, Little Italy and around midtown Manhattan where we stayed. Rob is fascinated with restaurants that are Zagat rated. If you want to know the best restaurants around, just refer to Zagat Survey booklet, this will give you the rating of local restaurants in a certain city based on food, décor, service and cost. So you don’t need the help of the concierge actually for some idea of where to go.

But sometimes we also try restaurants that are suggested by friends. On our first day, we felt like eating chinese so we headed for Chinatown to look for Dimsum Go Go, a resto suggested by a friend. It was out of the way from the subway station and it was quite a long walk to get there. If you’ve been to NY, you'll find the subway a bit confusing to use, at least for me anyway , but I admire my husband for having a very keen sense of direction. I didn’t pay much attention to directions and just followed his lead all the time, so I was like a hawk keeping an eye on him, if not I will get lost in the city . On a weekend, Chinatown is overflowing with tourists and sidewalk vendors, so it was so hard to walk without getting pushed, but then it was worth the walk going to that Dimsum place, the dumplings were great but the soup was superb, its called Duck Soup with Chinese Mushroom and served with Shanghai bread. Afterwards we had desserts in Lo Spuntino in Little Italy. Rob had Bitches Brew, a mocha cappuccino with Baileys and Brandy topped with whipped cream, chocolate syrup and cinnamon, while I had fresh strawberry crepe topped with Pistacchio gelato, they were yummy.

On Sunday, we had breakfast at Brasserie Pigalle, a French resto at the ground level of our hotel Hilton Garden Inn Time Square. Then we heard mass at St.Patrick’s Cathedral and it was a Filipino priest who celebrated the mass. Afterwards we went to NBC Studio to buy some souvenirs, I got a Saturday Night Live tee while Rob got a key ring with his name engraved on it. Then we went back to Little Italy again to have lunch at a Zagat rated Positano Ristorante, their mixed vegetable soup was really good. Then at night we just had light dinner of grilled shrimps, crab cake and salad in Brasserie Pigalle again and capped the night with Margarita and Martini.

But the highlight of my visit was my trip to Serendipity 3, the resto that I’ve been wanting to see to taste their popular Frozen Hot Chocolate. This resto was shown in the movie with the same title top billed by John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale. When I saw Oprah featured this dessert in her show and Rachel Ray had it in her $40 a Day show in Food Network, it became my dream to taste it too. It finally happened on this trip, the place was just tiny but very popular, good thing we came in early so we got a table right away. It is so popular that people didn’t mind queuing a long time to get a table. Rob thought the dessert was overrated, but I thought it was really good, anything chocolate delights my taste buds, , but the lunch we had was just ok, not really great.

We couldn't leave NY without having my favorite sushi, sashimi and tempura, so we went in another Zagat rated Japanese resto called Kodama Japanese Restaurant. The sushi and sashimi were so fresh, the salmon and tuna literally melted in my mouth, oh loved them! Plus the staff were so nice and friendly. For a drink, Rob had his favorite hot sake and I had green tea.

Another highlight of our visit was going to Hard Rock Café NY which just opened in August 2005. In every place we go, part of the trip is to always look for a Hard Rock Café, Rob has been collecting t-shirts from the store, he’s got quite a few from every cities and countries he visited, he got two from Hard Rock Café, Makati Philippines too!

Of course aside from good shops and restaurants, NY is known for broadway shows, so we didnt pass the chance of seeing a broadway show, another favorite thing we do together. We saw Spamalot, the winner of Tony Awards for Best Musical, Featured Actress and Best Director. At first I thought it might be boring because I had something else in my mind to watch actually. I wanted to see Three Days of Rain where my favorite actress Julia Roberts is starring in and of course Paul Rudd of the 'Clueless' and 'Object of My Affection' fame, but the tickets were almost sold-out and the only ones left were premium seats that cost $500+ or $1,000+ for both of us which is very outrageous for our budget. So I just settled for Rob's choice, Spamalot which turned out to be superb, very funny and entertaining, we were laughing the whole time.

So that’s how my weekend went, a lot of pigging out don't you think? , I’m sure we must have gained a couple of pounds again, this is just the downside of vacation , but what the heck, we enjoyed it tremendously anyway, .