THE CROSSWINDS EXPERIENCE (PART 1)

Our squad had this long time fascination of travelling overseas. But as we are only typical working adults, we have to plan ahead of time and budget our finances for our dream to materialize. At the meantime, we decided to scrub travel blogs and look for amazing places within the Philippines that would pay homage to some beautiful places abroad. Our consideration would heavily rely on how picture perfect (say instagram worthy of course) the place is; the budget that our group will share; and the comfort that we will get despite the inexpensive price tag. The first among our adventures took us for a long drive from Makati to Tagaytay to visit Crosswinds Resort Suites  – the piece of Switzerland within the pearl of the orient. The place itself is surrounded with pine trees where you can breathe fresh air, and enjoy a life different from the urban setting that we’ve been used to.

The ambiance is very serene, and has this countryside vibe which you can find on English novels – with nature at reach, quiet atmosphere, community-friendly facade and highlands location made us believe that we are really existing on a different continent. As we have expected from our initial research, the place didn’t disappoint us. Every corner is just picture perfect.

We have taken few snaps inside our flat after enjoying our breakfast. However, the weather is in the right mix to take our photography hobby outside and for us to take a stroll as well. Here’s the product of our quick indoor photography.

Outside was bright and sunny, but I have this crazy philosophy that I have to dress the part of being in Switzerland. So despite the semi-humid weather during the time we visited Crosswinds, I decided to wear layers of clothes as if that the cold never bothered me anyway. In reality, I was sweating AF, but we know the drill –  Look calm and play the part of a tourist even just in photos :).

Since we are truly digging in the place, this did not stop us from coming back from this majestic paradise. Stay tuned for part 2 of our Crosswinds adventure  months after. Visit their website for more information on the place and their rates.

Photos are property of GEEKYBF.COM. Please ensure proper credit upon usage.

Ben
GeekyBF.com

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CATCHING UP WITH LIFE FEAT. MISIBIS BAY, CAGRARAY ISLAND

Every working millennial would understand that “tired” is always a part of our existence. Behind our care-free life that we project is an ambition and willpower that burns inside of us. These usually fuel us to exert that extra effort in performing well in our jobs. However, our passionate minds and hearts may also lead us to be deprived of our personal time. It’s very inevitable especially when our capabilities are milked out like crazy to meet an urgent deadline.

When “beaching” is the perfect remedy.

My bff Joana (https://happyrabbittravels.com/) posted a write up regarding the same musings, and we usually talk about how we maintain the harmony of our personal lives. From the looks of it, she already found the right formula to balance her social and corporate life. In my case, no matter how hard I try, it seems that finding the equilibrium for these two is a huge challenge for me. There are just weeks where I would go without rest day to finish urgent matters in the office. Yes, my desk is clear but my head is cluttered. I missed my friends; lazy afternoon naps; and doing absolutely nothing. Just when you are on the verge of overheating comes my much anticipated 8 working day mandatory leave. The much needed hibernation took me to one of the most beautiful places in my hometown in Albay. I must admit that I am guilty on exploring only a few parts of the province despite jet setting to a number of places.

Sunny afternoon in Misibis Bay.

White sand at its finest.

My friend and I found ourselves in Misibay Bay Luxury Resort in Cagraray Island, Albay. After we arrange our stuff in our designated room, we immediately swapped our clothes to our swimwear and head to its famous white sand beach. The sun, the waves and the wind in our faces are the true therapy to combat the overflowing stress.

The feeling of lying down, facing the sun with the sand on your back stops the time like no other. A quick escape from the busy streets and skyscrapers brings an inner peace that melts all the restless feeling that has been accumulated all together. We never mind the burning sensation in our feet. All we care about is how we can make the most out of our time away from harsh reality.

After this short-lived vacay, it made me understood that there is nothing wrong if you allocate a spare time for yourself.  I still have this vacay-aftermath syndrome where I would crave for that pampered feeling, but I know it would be much impossible to have a weekly dose for such due to budget and scheduling concerns. Then again, weekends are there for a reason, and I just realized that I have to maximize this free time to be in the best shape the next working day. I will still render overtime in the future if its necessary, but I’ll make it a point to squeeze in some “me” time even if it is in a form of a long sleep, or a short adventure if possible. Being dedicated (or workaholic in some sense) to your profession is a thumbs up, for as long as we can draw a clear line from our lives within and outside our office.

Ben
GeekyBF.com

THINGS I’VE LEARNED FROM ONLINE DATING

Photo by yours truly.

Establishing an online presence has opened a lot of new things for me. Aside from the opportunity in creative writing and photography, it has allowed me to expand my network and meet the influential people that I truly admire. Being single and loveless made me decided to also try finding true love in cyberspace.

I was one of those who installed those dating apps; spending most of my free time browsing the potential lovers, and diligently responding to the messages of those interested ones. It was really overwhelming to know that someone is really interested to view your profile and send you a message. Hopes were up since some of my friends were able to kiss the right frogs through dating apps/ sites and found their destiny.

To cut the story short, I was able to score couple of dates with some “interesting users”. Later on, I realized that the fun part is only in the beginning. Let’s just say, every date became a “charge it to experience” moment.

SHOWING YOUR TRUE COLORS

If he loves you, he will accept you as a whole and help you become the best version of yourself. However, if he will change you with his superficial standards as his main focus, then better ask yourself if you really want to be with someone like him.

EXPECTATION VS. REALITY

Hopeless romantics (including me) immediately draw stories and fall in love with that perfect imagination. After which, we heavily expect that this day dream would soon be a reality with this potential partner, whom we’ve only gone through a single date. If this doesn’t materialize, we end up heart broken in the midst of singlehood. So fellas, its better to set our eyes to the real world and manage expectations.

Vector and images are copyright to their respective owners. Digital art by yours truly.

READ BETWEEN THE LINES

The greatest sign that a guy doesn’t want to continue on the getting-to-know game is a sudden and unpredictable change. This is when his messaging habits gets limited until he stops and forget about you. In a blink of an eye, he became “busy” from unexplained stuff that extends beyond 24/7. It goes back to the old-age scenario of being awkward in bringing the bad news. Even if it is online, the jittery feeling of telling NO to someone interested in you is hard AF.

Remember, don’t ever waste your time chasing  them. Don’t boost their ego by begging for time, and making them feel that they are worth chasing. We are all grown ups and we don’t want to play childish guessing games. If someone wants you, he will ensure that you will be remember not just when he needs someone to talk to.

YOUR INSTINCT IS YOUR BFF

That whispers in the back of your ear are there for a reason. It’s not overthinking, its your common sense telling you that there is something wrong.

In relation to the previous item, your gut feel on his actions can sometimes tell you if he still wants to pursue you. Just be observant with actions or frequency on messages. He won’t tell it straight to your face (or app in our case), but his actions plus your gut feel will slap you for a wake up call. If that’s the case, then its time to pull the plug.

“LOVE YOURSELF” EXCUSE

One of the overly used term in the millennial world is now being used in the so-called blame game in dating someone you met online (or in real life). To cover up their indecisiveness and for them to dump you, they would usually reason out that “you have to love yourself first”. This is a nice way of saying that “you can have all your love back for yourself”. Most of the time, we tend to stop and ponder deeply if there is still lacking from within. This toxic people make you look like its your fault, when its their unsure nature is the real problem.

Let me tell you this, loving yourself does not necessarily mean that you have mastered loving others. If you can heal yourself alone, then consider yourself lucky. However, there are just situations that you need a loving partner to remind you that you are worth loving despite you being broken. From this, you can slowly eject the loneliness and make room for love. Little than you know, you have grown how to appreciate and love yourself from the support given.

Photo by yours truly.

LOVE IS BEYOND FILTERS

Online dating is synonymous to marketing yourself. As part of this strategy, we tend to post our best-angled shots, and sometimes rely on filters for a little tweaking. But its a different case when the person you are dating has only fell in-love with your images, not the real you.

To share my experience, I’ve gone through a date with douche bags values appearance more than anything. There were days that I was told that either I gained weight (with a brow raised) or  I looked skinnier. This usually became the topic of our convo, and it made me think twice if I still have to finish my food. After which, my stress-related breakouts would become the main topic. I mean dude who wakes up in the morning and walks around with a ring light in his face?  Dating them made me more self-conscious and down, knowing that my value is based on images. Later on, I realized that if that is their perspective, then they are free to print my photos and take those out for a coffee.

USER-FRIENDLY EXPERIENCE

We are not talking about the apps and sites here. The people itself ready to tap your photo are the issue. It may take someone to kiss a lot of frogs to find the right one, or others may find luck in the first tap. Online dating may open possibilities, but its does not guarantee that it will spare you from troubles and depression from dickheads. Just remember to be cautious and be aware of what you’ve signed up for.

 

Ben
GeekyBF.com

 

MODELS TO WATCH (FEMALE) – MANILA FASHION FESTIVAL, THE NEXT

Runway photos from Manila Fashion Festival. Credits to the owner.
Digital art by yours truly. 

There are a lot of serious potential on the girls booked for the latest Manila Fashion Festival. Short listing the models is indeed a tough job. In a season flooded with newbies and rising stars, we pick the top contenders who commanded the fast phased runway, and impressed our selective eyes. We firmly believe that their hard work plus whole package can lead them to the ranks of catwalk supremacy in the Philippines.

Note: List is arranged in alphabetical order.
Runway photos are from Manila Fashion Festival. Credits to the owner. 

Anna Bradborn/ CalCarrie’s/ @bossbradborn

The runway and camera lens can’t get enough of her beauty. Anna is a bankable muse with an excellent track record from the respected people in Filipino fashion business. She simultaneously brushes us with her elegant aura, plus an immensely gorgeous face that won’t let you blink an eye.

Anne De Mesa/ Art Personas/ @annedemesa

Anne is a brilliant student who juggles the calling of academe and high heels. Outside her world of calculator and books, she is known to be the sophisticated girl, with a face made for beauty plus a physique sculpted for fashion. This beautiful geek may have found the formula to be that bookworm in high heels, and I hope she won’t mind giving us a cheat sheet of her modelling prowess. She has made repeated appearances on the runway each season. For the latest MFF, participation with Veejay Floresca, SOFA Graduation show and Azucar has got Anne gracefully marching in full control. She also scored a campaign with beauty brand – Garnier, making her a true runway home girl and the model with the bright future.

Baina Tan/ PW Models/ @bainatan

With the strong commercial nature of the market in Philippines, there will always be a soft spot to love a quirky beauty. The MFF runway is no stranger for Baina. She has graced its runway before and she made a towering comeback for Cheetah Rivera. Baina’s Asian features complimented the clean and minimalist collection, bearing an ethereal touch to her edgy aesthetic. If we have someone we are rooting to see more on catwalk and top glossies, it would definitely be her

Ella Tejana/ Yeoh Models/ @ellatejana

Coming from an agency with a strong reputation of producing caliber models, Ella is surely an asset on their board and the runway. From her introduction on the catwalk, Ella surely got that standout ticket on-hand. Her Asian features mixed with a hint of a Lily Aldridge resemblance is very interesting, thus making her a clear choice to show up in the right places.

Erika Narvaez / Art Personas/ @ikaynarvaez

People may perceive Erika as a timid beauty because of her calm nature. Her recognition of being among the strongest models is credited thanks to her quirky girl-editorial presence which truly works. Favored with a look that is hyped in fashion, this young model has the complete package to soar and create a mark as top model.

Geisha Naganuma/ Art Personas/ @geishacamille

That something that we truly love about Geisha is the mood she brings on the show. She is the real deal when it comes to being classic and edgy. It was nothing but a runway dream, seeing her carve her strut into perfection. The MFF season has wrapped up, but the musings for this Japanese rookie will keep on going.

Joma Bernardo/ PW Models/ @jo.majesty

Having a dark and shaggy bob as a weapon of choice, Joma declared that she is one of the owners of the spotlight. The intensity of her expression and bouncy walked could’ve passed to be the evil twin of top model Tanya Dyagileva. Joma’s stint has seduced the runway with an all-androgynous experience, leaving us with firm admiration.

Kevin Cusi / @imkevincusi

From the time she dipped her baby steps, we instantly became a fan. Kevin is a newcomer, who is obviously gifted with sensual curves; legs that stretch for days; and hypnotizing eyes. There is this tropical exoticism she delivers which puts her above others. No wonder she became one of the most wanted, for her presence will say that there’s no dull moment.

Kira Manansala/ PMAP/ @kiraeowyn

The youthful and sweet newbie of PMAP snaps as a head turner this season. Out of the pool of master walkers, Kira is synonymous to a breath of fresh air, gifted with long legs following the path of the big leagues. Her innocent-doll face and flowing mane only speaks her undeniable potential.

Ksenia Zambon/ Reign Models

When a model’s presence is enough to call it a day, you know she is a hot commodity. Ksenia’s stint in the Philippines is truly a memorable one. She strutted down 14 shows with her piercing expression, commanding the theatrics with her stomp. Her best performance is on her appearance for Veejay Floresca. She set the bar in providing a great amount of energy on such a dreamy collection.  As she explores the globe for modelling gigs, we only hope to see her back again for good in the seasons to come.

Leila Ibanez/ Art Personas/ @leilaibanez

A favorite among local designers, Leila stretches beyond the ordinary and has proven her worth. This model is an alumnus from Face of the Philippines who keeps on getting better each season. She radiates a traditional Filipina aesthetic that is synonymous to opulence and refinement. When it’s her turn on the catwalk, she can surely guarantee to end her turn on a high note. She was truly an exceptional selection on Vic Barba’s collection, winning not just the eye of the designer, but also the hearts of the audience.

Maria Fabiana/ IM Agency/ @mariafabiana_

She is the feistiest import that sweeps us off our feet. Since her appearance, Maria up her game to the nth level, going beyond the initial awe from the on-lookers. Behind that obvious beauty is a fire and energy that she keeps in tune. The good thing about Maria is her versatility. She can easily fit mainstream and crossover to bold- editorial.  We have witnessed her prowess on the spotlight, and we can give her a capital A plus for an effortless breakout star moment.

Maria Rivera/ @immariarivera

An excellent model never bores an audience, whether it’s her looks or her presence. This is the reason why we always have Maria in our mind. Last season, she fearlessly carried a bob cut and booked top tier shows. This time, she flaunts a long-wavy hair, with a strut that punctures our heartbeat. She is mile-high from the day she started, and her chameleon beauty will always welcome a strong following.

Martin Tuanquin/ @martintii

Martin’s feline-like face is something that leaves us all in amazement. Her ever-toned body aligned for swimwear and avant garde is something immaculate that most of us would die for. Our runway star has already taken part of previous seasons of Manila Fashion Festival, but the unsolicited attention will continue as it is. As one of the representation of redefining the modelling business, Martin will always deliver beyond recognition.

Wanda Chen/ @wandachen_

It appears that someone is spreading pink positive all over. Wanda has been fearlessly swapping her looks from time-to-time and always getting positive response. Rocking a not-so-typical hair color is huge risk for models. But Wanda made her color choices as part of her DNA, which blossoms into steady runway bookings and a campaign for Mosimmo clothing. Shying away from that usual baby face-Asian stereotype is unarguably her best move.

Ben
GeekyBF.com

MODELS TO WATCH (MALE) – MANILA FASHION FESTIVAL, THE NEXT

Runway photos from Manila Fashion Festival. Credits to the owner.
Digital art by yours truly. 

There is this unexplained rush they send while walking, and the sensation they left behind from their footsteps have been burned to our fashion memories.  Aside from worshiping the latest collections from the designers, our eyes our also glued on the living mannequins who were true stand outs. A model’s performance on the spotlight is deeper than the minutes spent on the runway. It’s an assessment of whether their attendance can give us a big check on that make-or-break moment. To mix it up a bit, we’ll start counting down the boys first. Note that the models are arranged in alphabetical order.

Runway photos are from Manila Fashion Festival. Credits to the owner. 

Dayal Chowdhary/ @dayalchowdhary

Having an unruly mane with an overgrown facial hair makes Dayal a smoldering commodity to appear this season. As his good looks separate him from the rest, he tends to promote an inexhaustible force on the catwalk that would surely welcome admiration and bookings under his cv.

Diogo Zambon

His Barbaric and rugged visage strides the runways of Darirue, Chris Diaz and Jun Jun Alblaza in overflowing intensity. A memorable performance has cemented an inevitable and charismatic following for this Brazilian. Living his trademark of messy hair and piercing eyes only says that he is destined to join the runway honor roll.

Elys Lim/ @project.el

Who would have thought that the delicate and gentle features of this Asian boy would work through dark and edgy styling? Elys is flexible enough to contradict his cherub-like charm and work well with the designers’ vision, which he also incorporated for the editorial spread he recently booked. We just discovered a fresh talent  who is a “sought-after” in the long run.

Howel Medina/ Art Personas

Howell’s projection alone tells a lot of story. He was promising from his start, and has seen him grow until these days. As an artist himself, he carries his skills to the runway, and turns himself into a walking work of art through his otherworldly features. He is surely someone who ends his appearance with a high note, and we are keeping that in mind.

Iago Faria/ @iagofaria13

The irresistible Brazilian is showing us that blondes really have more fun. It was all natural for him when he commands the runway with an easy-feel good spirit. Possessing a perfect bone structure; god-like height; and eyes that pierce through someone’s soul – guess we found a new buzz generator.

Jake Villumsen / Art Personas/ @jakevillumsen

His gentleman face has appeals between the classic and mainstream market. Mr. Villumsen has a quality that always brought a lasting impression which was requested by the runway royalty. Despite his frequent runway appearances and travels, this handsome Danish secured the passport to land as a marvelous model.

Johannes Rissler/ @superjohans

When we saw him on the runway, he is just too hot for words to describe. His perfectly sculpted jawline, and mesmerizing eyes made him a strong contender on the roll. From that point, we knew that we fell in love with this eye-catching demi-god with a body made for war.

Juan Carlos Schubert/ @schubert.jace

The youthful and refined aura of Mr.Schubert have paved way to becoming a runway distinction this season. He proved his modelling abilities by standing out, and executing an elegant walk behind the theatrical creations of Ablaza. This performance only says that he is more than just a product of a gifted DNA.

Ken Bosch / PMAP/ @kennbosch

You can always see him flashing his bright smile backstage. However, this model means business when it’s his time to shine on the spotlight. Putting his magnetically striking features upfront, and turning that cute charm into a slaying power, he found himself a secured spot and it’s not hard to see why.

Lawrence Cervantes / Art Personas/ @mr.walecner

Artist/ Art Professor/ Model – Seems a lot but a handsome multitasker carries these titles effortlessly. He initially existed in the art world. An almost similar industry, where his deep affection with something beyond normal is cultivated. Crossing borders to fashion seems to be natural for Lawrence. Possessing bold facial features and a lean physique to match made him a vital part of Manila Fashion Festival. He is pretty much successful in his early endeavors, and the fashion world seems to have more in-store for this man-for-all-seasons and reasons.

Mark Jason Go / Yeoh Models/ @markasongo

The relax yet exaggerated features of this model goes along with his strong and remarkable presence in Manila Fashion Festival TheNext. He made an impression as a stand out in SOFA Graduation show owning not just his perfect jaw line and orient looks, but the aesthetic of the pieces he is wearing. We now understand that having him on shows would tell us that he is unintentionally meant to be noticed.

Maverick Lacson / @mavericklacson

He set the runway in heat as he made his stint this season for Manila Fashion Festival. Maverick is the epitome of “individuality” on his stride and absorbs all the attention on the catwalk.  The quirkiness maybe unusual for the commoners, but who cares if you are a citizen built for the runway?

Ben
GeekyBF.com

HER SMELL OF SUCCESS – SOLEIL ET LUNE

Photographed by yours truly.

Our history class uncovered to us that woman back on the early times have been treated as second-class citizens kept in silence. Oppression along with sexism has been the norm up until our sisters fought for change and equality. As the previous leaders were overtaken by a new generation, the old prejudice ideas have been overtaken with a new unbiased environment, slowly opening their minds into recognizing the voice of women. Being in the 21st century, we can see a huge leap from what it was before. Women nowadays are free to express themselves through opinions and personal style. They have promoted the idea of establishing an identity which is free from what the understatement that they have been told to before.

As a companion to her success and self expression, a dab and spray of a perfume has been a part of her weapon of choice. A fancy bottle can define and even become an extension of the person she is. For the modern day women, a scent is more than just smelling good. It is a sort of invisible accessory, awakening her alluring spirit and empowering the individual she wants to be.

With the willpower of femininity in mind, Ms. Kristine Dee and Elizabeth Supetran of The Beauty Mission introduced Soleil et Lune – a fragrance catered to celebrate the Filipina, complementing her exceptional beauty, freedom and aspirations. They also believe that women deserve to enjoy an everyday luxury, that is why they managed to encapsulate this concept in a bottle for her to do so. Soleil et Lune is translated from French as Sun and Moon, with the implication of providing a whiff of the lush life that a woman warrants from sun rise till dark. The range of the Soleil et Lune creations came from the carefully selected oils and essences from Grasse, France to match the seasons of our country. Get to know Soleil et Lune’s variety that airs the promise of an opulent experience.

 

Images from Soleil et Lune. Credits to the owner. 

With an exceptional fragrance, we now understood that success and being remembered are not just about the eyes, but also the nose. Visit soleiletlune.ph or seektheuniq.com to order online. Soleil et Lune is also available at Firma in Greenbelt 3.

Ben
GeekyBF.com

MANILA FASHION FESTIVAL (THE NEXT) GO-SEE HIGHLIGHTS

Photographed by yours truly.

We have witnessed Manila Fashion Festival’s success that merited our slow claps throughout the past seasons. But before the glitz and cheers, they have to conduct first the rigorous practice of model casting.

Just as odds are in our favor, we were lucky enough to be invited to experience another round of casting. It is already my second time to watch this process, but the excitement will always there. My usual lazy Sunday afternoon has been overpowered by model adrenaline as we mingle with fashion experts and model hopefuls. As the stress is evident, seeing the whole selection process makes us feel grounded. You can see the hard work that everyone incorporated in their task – Models brushing off the nerves; looking as if they are having a good time, and the casting committee screening hundreds of models, ensuring that each one of them fits the mold.

Photographed by yours truly.

The day ended with a “sigh” from everyone. One down from their task line up, but there is more to go. Every designer has marked their favorites, and may deliberate to the other models that they may want to consider. For sure, there is a lot in-store for us this season – from models, designer creations and the actual show. At the meantime, enjoy the cut below for the catch on what’s inside the Go-See for Manila Fashion Festival THE NEXT.

Photos are property of GEEKYBF.COM. Please ensure proper credit upon usage. 

Ben
GeekyBF.com