Hello friends! I am slowly writing this on the eve of New Year's Eve (most prob will finish this tomorrow in time for NYE), I can already hear fireworks outside.
Days prior this, I was afraid I won't have the energy to post my usual year-ender (essay writing since my Multiply blogging days, hehe). First, I was just too lazy LOL. I have so many travel backlogs, and I can't seem to skip on all of them for this! Secondly, maybe because I don't think I will easily get over 2017, it's as if I don't want this year to end!
During Ashley's wedding, I was seated with her Kawaii PH friends and they brought up this coming 31st. In the two times they did, I have to ask: "Anong mangyayari sa 31?" 😂😅
Although an innocent case of forgetfulness, it's also as if I was subconsciously NOT READY to part yet with 2017. All the other years before this, they were all A-Okay, but 2017 has really been good to me... maybe even the best! I've seen most of my long-time dreams come true this year. While listing stuff to include in this blog post, ang daming beses ko ding nasabi "Grabe this year din nangyari to!?"
And so, after a bit of a long intro, here are the highlights of my favorite year yet:
If 2016 was the start of my solo travels, 2017 was the year when I traveled with the most random people!
While looking through all my trips this year, most if not all of them I was accompanied by either a person or a group that I don't even hangout with! It was the year when I said YES to almost all travel offers either by friends, acquaintances, brands, etcetera, regardless of who I was going to be with--and no regrets! I enjoyed the company of new friends, and learned to open myself up even if just a little bit especially since we're in a venue where one is most true: When out there in a foreign place!
Hike and climb! Masungi Geo Reserve with the most random mix of people from the blogging world!
Food trip and surfing (but mostly food trip!) in Baler with Mother Earth and Kaycee:
Checked my Bohol must-visit places with Team Comco, AirAsia, World Vision, and invited online and traditional media peeps:
The great Myanmar escape with Ruth:
Korea girl-bonding with Youtubers, bloggers, and media peeps for KTO x Cebupac's first Ladies Tour:
10 days in Singapore with my mains Pax and Tracy:
I've seen more of Kuala Lumpur with these travel bloggers:
Turning Japanese! 11 days of Autumn in Japan with Deegee:
Concerts of my most favorite bands ... EVER.
This year granted ALL my dream concerts even before it was mid 2017! Feeling ko tuloy wala na akong concert bucket list UNLESS bumalik sila dito, haha!
A little bit overdue, but finally Goo Goo Dolls went to Manila last January. I don't think any live song or any band will give me that kind of rush again.
A Fan Girl's KDrama Tour.
If I have to pick just one highlight of this year, then undeniably I will choose my early Spring trip in Seoul, or what I will eventually call my Kdrama Tour. It was my third time in Korea, so the night before my flight I decided to create a different and budgeted itinerary to satisfy the Kdrama fan girl in me. I did not realize that a spontaneous and personal travel project of a fan girl will be very well reciprocated online. Mag isa lang ako non, pero parang ang dami kong kasama! :) Thank you!!!
My first stop was at the Goblin's house, I was shaking while walking towards it:
I also made sure to stop by Do Bong Soon's house:
And eat a walnut pie in her ahjussi's bakery!
I knew, since I will be traveling solo, that I don't have anyone who will take my pictures kaya ready ako with my prints:
Korea for Spring, Summer, and Autumn!
If you write down your goals and dreams, I don't think there is any other next step to that than to make them happen! This year, I was lucky to experience the three seasons of Korea, one of the things that I wrote in my travel bucket list before 2017 started. (At this moment, I am still waiting for the go-signal of my Korea winter trip next month, crossing my fingers).
Just like in movies. I got to see these unbelievable sights!
Straight out of a children's book! Dreamy Pyeongchang sheep farm with my whole family:
Never thought I'll see these iconic ancient pagodas and temples of Bagan this year:
Constellation in Singapore's ArtScience Museum:
On my own I was able to reach the faraway Sirao flower garden, or the mini Amsterdam of Cebu #SelfTimer:
I still dream of this scene in my head: A beautiful afternoon in Korea's Yeouido Hangang Park:
I tried a legit (fully-naked!) jimjilbang or public bathhouse in Korea:
I finally saw these sensitive, endangered species in their natural habitat in Bohol's Tarsier Sanctuary:
Climbed a mountain with my family while we were in Pyeongchang, Korea:
Las Casas Filipinas de Azucar in Bataan looks like a painting:
The nerve-wracking JSA tour aka the North and South Korea border with my family:
Calmness and pink sunset in Baler:
Seeing my Korean Idols in the Flesh!
I'm a late bloomer! I only discovered Korean Dramas in late 2016, but I've been marathoning every night ever since. That's 28 Kdramas for just a year, and still counting! Haha!
So imagine catching the craze just in the time when most of our K idols decided to visit the Philippine shores!
Up close with Park Shin Hye during her fan meet in Araneta and Megamall:
Korean oppas Jin Ju Hyeong and and Kim Hyun Woo for You With Me movie Meet and Greet:
My fave Dara and Mario Maurer for the Head and Shoulders Supreme media event:
B1A4, Shinee, CNBlue, BTOB and more....K-Pop and Kdrama Stars overload at the One K Global Peace Concert in MOA Arena! I was screaming nonstop!
Shaking hands with my main oppa Nam Joo Hyuk in his Manila fan meet:
When 2017 started, my only wish was that my family and friends may have the best of health. I prayed fervently for this every morning and before going to bed. I think I've grown a lot when someone dear to me fell ill. I wouldn't want anything else, I wasn't looking for things that are not in front of me, I just want happy and healthy loved ones so we can all enjoy life together. I think this instance made me value the most important things in life. I became easily happy and satisfied over the littlest things, as long as everyone I love is happy and healthy. Yun lang talaga. And when I became so content with what's in front of me, that's when blessings started to overflow.
Ahhhh 2018, you have some big shoes to fill! More than all these great things I listed above, I am the most happy and grateful that my loved ones are all here with me, happy and healthy to enjoy what we have now. I may be nervous to leave something so good, but life won't stop.... So onward and upwards! I just have to believe that EVEN MORE BEAUTIFUL THINGS are yet to come!
May 2018 be our unexpected best year, even better than these beautiful 365 days. :)
Happy New Year!