Thursday, May 31, 2012


When I (officially) received a notification that I'm on the list of graduating students for UP OU's graduating batch of 2012, I asked my father to possibly look for a place in Los Banos where we can stay for the duration of my 2-day commencement itinerary. Positively, an invitation letter from UP OU included a list of accommodations to choose from.

At first, I told my father to just check an accommodation inside UP Los Banos. In my mind, since I'll be the one to pay the fee, it's better to get a budget-friendly place.

Surprisingly, my father informed me that he already booked a place. And it's not in any dormitory or hostel of UP Los Banos. Yes, it's in Trace Suites.

So are you graduating at UP Open University and thinking to stay at Trace Suites? Read on.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


May 5 was the graduation day at UP Open University. It was the day that I was sooooooo excited and happy. Finally, I said to myself, after two and a half years of study, I'll be saying goodbye to sleepless nights, tons of paper works, a rack of examinations, and mind-boggling online discussions.

Since we live in FARview (Fairview), the best way to find comfort and not be a casualty of tardiness, our family opted to check in at a nearest hotel. Weeks before my graduation day, my dad booked a room at Trace Suites, which is ten minutes or 100 tumblings away from UP Los Banos, a place where UP Open University Headquarters is housed.

Despite my excitement, I had time to laze around in the swimming pool of the hotel. This happened on the day of my graduation. Thinking that the graduation ceremony will be in the afternoon and the call time is 2 pm, I woke up early and swam in the warm pool.
But here's a catch. There was a major and horrifying boo-boo on my graduation day that (somehow) brought out the "Claudine" in me. And that I will reveal on my blog.

Monday, May 28, 2012


One of the main reasons why I went back to the Philippines in May of this year is because I attended my MA graduation at the University of the Philippines Open University.

Since the graduation venue and UP OU’s headquarters is at UP Los Banos, my family and I decided to book and stay in a nearest hotel. Upon research and my father’s inquiry, we stayed at Trace Suite, which is 10 minutes away from UP Los Banos.

I was so delighted to attend the UP OU graduation. I tell you, it’s unusual and all the graduates were pampered. Everyone was welcomed with great food and superb cultural shows. With the two day affair – the first day is for Departmental Fellowship, Alumni Meeting and Rehearsal and the second day is the actual graduation – I had the chance to meet some of my classmates which I get to interact with via online classes. Positively, I met most of my classmates because of frequent vacation in the Philippines and meet-ups.

So what happened in the first day of the two-day exclusive UP OU graduation extravaganza? Read on to know more.

Thursday, May 24, 2012


Wohoo! After three weeks of hiatus, I'm finally back.

As you all know, I went back to the Philippines, three weeks ago, to enjoy my end-of-contract vacation. Actually, I was supposed to stay longer back home but it didn't happen because I wasn't able to get my renewed passport on time. But no one's to blame. At least, I was able to get a one year extension of my passport and was home in time for my MA graduation at the University of the Philippines Open University.

It's one of the most exciting vacation I've had over the past years of being a Balikbayan in the Philippines. Apart from the usual meet up with friends, food trippin and a line-up of family bonding sessions, everything went spontaneous. Finally, I veered way (a bit) from my structured and stiff schedule. For this year, I just kept in mind who are the people I must meet, food I want to taste, a few places to visit, and moments I want to relive once again. I was also matipid at some point and I exercised... everyday! Oh well, except in the latter part of my vacation.

Let me give you a sneak peak of my vacation! Read on.