This is a writing from a personal experience. When I turned twenty-four last year, I felt that my life wasn’t figured out yet and I’m kinda confused of what to do next after the pre-twenties and post-college feels. My twenty three is a transitioning part into a more adult version of myself because it embarks my mid-twenties journey. Twenty – three for me, would surely impact my 30’s.

After a year, here’s the twenty-five year old version of myself.

This year, the goals I figured out from the 24 year old me is building.
Here are the things I learned along the journey between being twenty four and twenty three.

1. LET IT GO  – There are people who came into your life that you can't let go because you believe that friendship and those times spent together should be kept and cherished. You have a life mantra of “when quitting, think why you even started” ---- but that doesn’t apply to all.

You can give yourself a break to this, if you have tried fixing your relationship and you keep on circling to the same situation, it’s time to let go. Remember that some people are not meant to stay in our lives (esp if they cause you too much heartaches and stress), some are just for visits to make us feel human. That is to make us feel hurt, loved, to love and learn. Thank them still, because through them, you keep on learning and knowing yourself.
  Remember that some people are not meant to stay in our lives 

2. CHERISH LIFE MOMENTS – We are caught building dreams and comply on the activities in our schedule that we are cramped up to have a life. Hey! You are just in your 20’s and it’s ok to have a balanced life still, so by chilling out with friends once a month is ok, it won’t break your dreams, actually it might even help!

Stop living the past and worrying about the future. 
Take your mobile phones down and hang up to unnecessary calls. Live that moment right in front of you, be interactive on that moment.

3. SET A GOAL. BUILD AN EMPIRE – The only problem that we have in life is that we just don’t know where we’re heading and that makes most of the people bore about their job and current tasks. YOU NEED TO HAVE A DRIVING FORCE, A DREAM TO LIVE. Find your passion, set minor and major goals for the next few weeks, for the next couple of years and see them fulfill bit by bit, I tell you, it’s gonna be rewarding.
“find something you love, and let it kill you”

4. BEING SINGLE IS OK. (don’t panic!) – Your college friend is rocking his life already, a car, a dream house and their getting married or even expecting a baby, while you, you’re still ain’t got nothing, well ----just yet!.

A moment to be single is a gift. This is the time to know more about yourself, to be free spirited and independent person. Your character is a gift to your partner someday, if you can’t fix yourself and chase for someone to complete you, you will never be completed because that person might someday leave you and you might get incomplete once again.
“I’m busy looking for someone to complete me that I’m already loosing myself and my identity”
-Alice (Dakota Johnson), How to be Single, 2016 Movie [non-verbatim]

5. GET SERIOUS – This is your mid-20’s something, you are no longer that fresh young man graduate guy, you are about to be thirty soon and one day, you’ll be settling down. Give yourself some decency to pay for your bills and taxes by having a stable job and kicking career plan. This is not just for yourself but for your future family. Be that someone who knows how to enjoy life while being serious about responsibilities. Be independent. Be a provider.
Drive that fancy car and live that dream house.

It’s almost about 2:00 in the afternoon when we proceeded to the light house before we went to the beach to settle the day.  [ If you want to know what happened first before we went to the lighthouse, click this for the Part 1 of this post, featuring the EZobel Museum and Santo Domingo Parish Church ]

Tip: When you arrive in Calatagan, I suggest you seek the sites first before heading to beach especially if you only have two days to stay. When you arrive on the beach, there’s nothing to do really but swim and sun bathe.

Cape Santiago Lighthouse

Cape Santiago lighthouse according to the caretaker, Kuya Antonio, has never stopped its operation until today but in World War 2 as this was used by the Japanese soldiers for i-don’t-know-and-forgotten-reason-when-kuya-Antonio-mentioned-it-because-i-was-busy-taking-pictures-and-selfie. This is an 18th century lighthouse and now taken care of by the Philippine Coast Guard. Kuya Antonio is a licensed officer of the coast guard and a volunteer guide/caretaker for the light house.

This is the feels before you enter the lighthouse

This is the first time that I saw a light house and went inside of it.

The lighthouse is facing the Verde Island passage and Lubang Island, which is part of Mindoro already. Said that Lubang is closer to Calatagan but part of Mindoro. The locals of Lubang is closer to Calatagan that they buy their supplies there instead to its mother province itself.

This is located at the front of the lighthouse where you can sit back and relax a little bit

Before heading to the lighthouse, call Kuya Antonio (Caretaker) first because sometimes he’s not around the area. Contact number below this post.

Burot Beach

Finally the destination!

Before you head to the beach, you have to ride another tricycle from the gate of the beach to the beach itself. Burot is a personal owned property and would be the cheapest beach in Calatagan. You can also settle to other beach with resorts, but if you feel like spending less yet filled with adventure type and camp vacation, I recommend you to Burot beach.

When we arrived on the beach itself, the place is crowded so we were kinda disappointed, but I looked and searched around the area----go to the left most part and you will find less people and intimacy with whoever you are with.

Mangroves are located at the left part of the beach

We prepared our dinner through grill and self-made camp fire from the leaves and dry woods around the area. Good thing I came from my granny’s house when I was younger so I knew how to gather woods for camp fire.

The night spent outside the tent in a picnic setting laid ourselves down on the sand stargazing and talked about our life----yeah ok, our love stories and current love affairs. (haha!). 
NightCamp! And this dog loves to be cuddled and interact with the beach visitors, he even laid down with us.

The other day, we spent the morning gathering our things to go home, but I stayed a bit alone to have some ocean dipping.

I told you! Dogs are everywhere and friendly!

Survivor castaway?

precious stuffs.

What to know:
  • There’s only one store on the beach.
  • Electrical supply is out in Burot beach.
  • The store provides tent, griller, camp fire woods, hot water and other food supplies
  • The store also owns the restroom that you have to share with all the people on the beach.
  • Less safer if you go farther on the beach because the security seldom goes there.
I want you to feel the inside of the camp and its view.
What to bring:
  • Insect Repellant.
  • Own camp supplies. --- I mean everything!
  • Own food (or buy at the Calatagan Market)
  • Mallows for camp fire.


Well, if you're looking for a safe place to travel, hospitable locals, and cheap getaway, Calatagan is a place to visit. I wouldn't highlight the Burot beach itself since there's a lot of beach and beach-resort options there, but rather the capability of Calatagan to give you variety of activities ( like wakeboarding!) and places that are available in their place.

Calatagan is a place for travelling lesser time yet jampacked perfect weekend getaway and a touch of 18th century culture that will make you wanna retire early and have a simple life just like Calatagenous.


Here's the Part 1 of the post:

Travel Guide: A Budget Weekend Getaway Part 1 [ EZobel Museum & Santo Domingo de Silos Parish Church ]

You can now download our itinerary and expense sheet (excel) that covers our travel from Manila - Calatagan and vice versa. Click this.
Tricycle tour: Kuya Ruben - 09752638616 | 09997176599
Lighthouse: Kuya Antonio - 9198416486
A lot of employees may take it for granted, but companies in the Philippines are compelled by law to invest in their health and future.

Take SSS, for example: out of the monthly contribution rate which is 11% of the monthly salary, Philippine employers are required to pay 7.37%, while the employee only pays 3.63%. At retirement (usually around 60 years old), the employee will get the highest amount based from any of the three computations below:

1. The sum of P300, plus 20 percent of the average monthly salary credit, plus two percent of the average monthly salary credit for each credited year of service (CYS) in excess of ten years; or
2. forty (40) percent of the average monthly salary credit; or
3. P1,200, if the CYS is at least 10 but less than 20; or P2,400, if the CYS is 20 or more.

That’s not a bad pension figure, after twenty years of working. (And note this: retired professionals also get a 13th month pension, just like any regular Filipino employee!)

But an employee doesn’t need to retire to enjoy the benefits that the government demands the employers to secure for their employees. A sick employee or their dependent can immediately take advantage of Philhealth’s coverage, which can include subsidies for hospital room and board fees, drugs and medicines, laboratory exams, and professional fees.

Likewise, anyone who’s dreaming of owning their dream home can apply for a loan with Pag-Ibig. That doesn’t just mean getting the government institution to help you buy a condo or townhouse—but also a fully developed residential lot (and yes, even finance the construction of a house from ground up.)

What’s good for employees is that, should they decide to concern themselves about these matters, they can always run to their companies’ Human Resources personnel to assist them with these things.

But how about those who opt to go the freelancing route? 

What paperwork do they need to file, to make sure they are also investing in their future? Do they get the same coverage as a regular employee? Are the fees different for self-employed professionals?

“According to the Department of Science and Technology, there are already 1.5 million freelance professionals in the country—and more than 700,000 of those freelancers are registered online on our global online jobs platform,” says Evan Tan, Regional Director for Southeast Asia of “We need to educate these professionals that their untraditional work setups do not hinder them from enjoying the same opportunities and benefits as regular employees.”

To help freelancers understand SSS, Philhealth, and Pag-ibig memberships and coverage more comprehensively,, together with premier workshops organizer Manila Workshops, has organized the Talino Talks event entitled, “Philhealth, Pag-Ibig, & SSS for Freelancers—Explained”.

Featured in the event is Dandy Victa, the founder of Manila Civil Service Review, author of “Work-at-Home Entrepreneurship: A Practical Guide for Filipinos with Disabilities”., and a Master of Entrepreneurship and Innovation degree holder at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

The event is happening on March 19, 2016, Saturday, 1 pm, at the office, 30th floor, Ecotower Building, 32nd cor 9th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig.

Summer is fast approaching so we decided to take a pre-summer break last February 12-14 from the metro and life itself as part of the Life Hacks to Get Your Life Kicking Again. This is not because me and my friends hate Valentine's, it's just a perfect time for cool kids to go out of town and have some fun.

Before we finally decided that Calatagan is the place, there were other options that we considered to make the most of our #WeekendGetaway. But these are the reasons why we chose Calatagan, Batangas, particularly, Burot Beach to spend our first out-of-town trip this year and our Valentine's day
  • Short time of travel (3-4 hours from Manila)
  • Peace and Serenity (Avoid people as much as possible, to spend more time together)
  • White beach adventure
  • Cheap expense rate (costs only less than a thousand (Phil. Peso) per person if you travel by group)

We have a lot of expectations about the place, especially when we learned that aside from Burot beach there's a lot of activities that can be done and sites that we can visit in Calatagan.  These are the Santo Domingo de Silos Parish Church, EZobel Museum and Cape Santiago lighthouse, which all have rich history way back in the 1800s (cool right?)


We started our day at a 6am Travel from Cubao. We rode the MRT and went straight to the UV Terminal at the back of the MRT-Taft Avenue station. There's also other route to Calatagan---buses that can be accessed by riding a jeepney from MRT taft station to coastal mall. Riding a jeepney to coastal mall is a lot of travel for us because we have giant travel bags, so riding a UV is faster and an easier option.


We left Manila at around 7am and arrived in Calatagan Public Market around 11am, too early for us to seize the beach, so we had our lunch first. We met our service driver for the day, kuya Ruben and bought supplies we needed for the night camp since there's no hotel and electricity in Burot beach.

Enjoying our lunch before heading to adventure

Calatagan is a small town since there's just few stores and banks (2 atms) around and most of their houses are far from each other same to their tourist sites. Going around the place is hard due to lack of transportation. So if you plan to visit places, an arranged transportation service is a must, ours happen to be a tricycle. Calatagan seems to be a far place, when actually, it's just a 3-hour travel from the concrete jungle.

I just love how hospitable the people of Calatagan are. They welcomed, helped and accommodated us from our arrival until we left. Seems like they are already used with travelers and tourists in their small town. I can't doubt their honesty and hospitality--genuinely Pinoy!
Food Preppin' for the beach tonight!

The EZobel Museum & Santo Domingo de Silos Parish Church. 

When we arrived, the museum was still closed and we were the only visitors, still they let us in. Again, hospitality and fun was there, thanks to AK for accommodating us, AK is the in-house guide.

We learned so much about the history of living in Calatagan way back from the pre-Spanish colonialism to the Spanish invasion. The excavation of the blue and white ceramics and other archaeological relics were led by Zobel de Ayalas in Calatagan.

Trivia:  The government thru the National Museum of the Philippines granted Zobel de Ayalas to conduct a scientific archaeological excavation on the arrangement that 60% of the relics will go to the National Museum of the Philippines while 40% will be kept by the Zobel de Ayalas as they provided the excavation funds.
The Zobel de Ayala clan particularly Enrique is an icon in Calatagan, they are the Senoritos and Senoritas who own an empire even until today. Just a few to mention, they have the foundation that connects generation of family of workers in Calatagan (AK is a product himself of his great grandpa who also a pioneering worker in the hacienda), Hacienda Bigaa, Ice Plant, San - Miguel Brewery dating back from its establishment before (now they are still part as share holders), Azucarera, Milk producers and many more. 

Info overload right? please do visit the Museum and check it out yourself! There's so much to learn there! You'd feel like you're connected with Zobel de Ayalas, up to the rich history and culture of Calatagan that makes us Filipinos sharing an entire story as a one.

  • EZobel Museum has no entrance fee, but there's a donation box you and your friends can chip-in. 
  • You might wanna bring extra money for souvenirs and  their in-house coffee shop, the Island Store Cafe. 

Here's the souvenir and coffee shop inside the compound of the museum.

We had a 10 minute stop at Santo Domingo de Silos Parish Church. I prayed a bit inside. Based from old pictures and story from EZobel museum, this is an 18th century church, serving locals of Calatagan, established and renovated as time goes by.

Here's the Part 2 of the post:
Travel Guide: A Budget Weekend Getaway Part 2 [ Cape Santiago Lighthouse and Burot Beach ]
You can now download our itinerary and expense sheet (excel) that covers our travel from Manila - Calatagan and vice versa. Click this.
Tricycle tour: Kuya Ruben - 09752638616 | 09997176599
EZobel Museum  - 09175777044

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