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23 February 2011

Bacolod - Day 2, Philippines-Mongolia Matchday (Go Azkals!)

Day 2 breakfast was at Circle Inn. Food sucks. Hehe. The buffet breakfast was not that expensive but the choices were super limited so we decided to order ala carte. Rhuel had a clubhouse sandwich. Ako ham and cheese yata. Basta, nothing special.

Lunch was at Bob's. We had lechon macau and inihaw na liempo. It was okay. We also tried their cakes. Not okay. Calea set such a high standard. Hehe.

Then we were off to the Pana-ad Stadium to watch the game. When we got off the jeep, we were told that we need to ride a trike. We decided to walk since the signs say it was only 300 meters away. It was kinda far though. Hehe. 

Pero fun kasi madaming tao.

We were able to get decent seats even if the major sponsors have reserved the best seats already. We felt like we were paparazzis. Daming star sightings. Hehe. Marc Nelson, Dyan Castillejo, TJ Manotoc, Cesca Litton, COMELEC Commissioner Larrazabal, Vince Hizon, Patricia Bermudez, etc. Coolness.

The crowd went wild everytime the Azkals went out of the dugout. The fans were cool. May singing, cheering, wave, etc. Hehe.

I won't go into the details of the game because I am not an expert. Basta, the Philippines won over Mongolia, 2 goals to nil. Chieffy Caligdong made the first goal while Phil Younghusband made the 2nd goal. Yey! The fireworks after the game were splendid. :)

Problem was the ride back to the city after the game. Ang daming tao pero walang jeep. Hehe. We decided to try hitching rides with the vehicles that passed by. They were ignoring us - except the manong truck driver who was going to deliver sugar cane to another town. Yey. Hirap umakyat sa taas ng truck. Hehe. He dropped us off downtown.

We had dinner at the 18th Pala-Pala Seafood Restaurant. Dampa-style siya. You buy fresh seafoods then they'll cook it for you. We had shrimps and barbecue. Yum.

Then back to the hotel to sleep for a few hours. Then it was time to head to the airport for our flight back to Manila. Again, the trip was star studded. We even got Chino Trinidad's seat. Hehe. The Mongolian team was also in the airport but they were taking the PAL flight.

Over-all, the trip was really worth it. I had so much fun cheering for our team. I hope to watch more football matches in the future. And I hope the Azkals will win more games too. :)

Bacolod - Day 1

My husband Rhuel is a big football fan. He follows all those football leagues and would often stay up til the wee hours of the morning to watch his favorite teams (like Liverpool). Initially, I thought the game was boring. They do nothing but kick the ball around for 90 minutes with very little chance of making a goal. But when Rhuel compelled (hehe) me to watch the World Cup in 2010, I became a bit interested. Apart from seeing all these hunks (Iker Casillas of Spain, Mesut Ozil of Germany, etc.), the game was actually kinda interesting. Then the Philippine men's football team won a few games during the Suzuki Cup. I got hooked. By then, I was into the game already and not merely into the hot Filipino foreigners who were playing for our country. There was a buzz that one of the Suzuki Cup games will be held here in the Philippines. Rhuel & I thought of watching. But it didn't push through. When the news came out that one of the AFC Challenge Cup's games was going to be held in Bacolod, Rhuel & I knew that we had to watch. According to Rhuel, it was a once in a lifetime opportunity. So off to Bacolod we go...

We booked Cebu Pacific flights because they had the cheapest rates at that time. We got round trip tickets for P2,500.00 each. We found Circle Inn through Trish's (of Manila and Beyond) recommendations. They offered rooms at P880.00 per night which was a good deal. I was lucky to have a friend who works for the Philippine Football Federation. She took care of our tickets to the football match.

We arrived in Bacolod on Feb. 8, Tuesday morning. The flight to Bacolod was kinda star-studded. Chino Trinidad and Chiqui Roa Puno were on the same flight. Hehe. Chino, our nephew, was even the first officer assigned to our flight.

Cab to the hotel was P150 per head. We shared the cab with 2 other persons. The vans charge the same rate too. If you want to ride the taxi by yourself, I think they charge P500 per trip.

Circle Inn was very accommodating - they allowed us to check-in early. After resting for a few hours, we decided to explore the city.

First stop was at The Ruins. Circle Inn front desk people told us to ride a jeep going to Talisay then to get off at the Pepsi office in Bata then to take a trike to The Ruins. But the jeepney driver told us that it was better to get a trike from Silay because trikes are scarce in Bata. So we followed his advice. We got off at Silay and looked for a trike that will take us to The Ruins. I think the manong agreed to a P300.00 fare back and forth. We thought it was reasonable enough. When we passed by the Pepsi office in Bata, we saw a terminal of trikes headed to The Ruins. Negative pogi points for manong jeepney driver.

The Ruins was picturesque. It's owned by a Lacson family. It's the remnant of a beautiful mansion. There are conflicting stories though regarding the destruction of the mansion. Some say the Japanese ruined it, while some say the family itself destroyed the house to prevent the Japs from using it. The Ruins has a nice garden too. It's a good place to relax. They also serve food (we didn't try it though). We didn't stay that long there. We just took a few pictures and we left the place. Not really worth the P300.00 fare. I'm not sure if the entrance fee was P50.00 or P100.00 per person.

Maybe manong trike thought the P300.00 fare was too much. He decided to take us to another mansion. Another Lacson mansion. Unlike The Ruins, this mansion was not yet a tourist attraction. It was still being developed and renovated before it can be opened to the public. There was even a sign outside which prohibited people from going inside. But since manong was brave, we entered the house. The caretaker was nice and accommodating. She allowed us to explore the first 2 floors. There was a chapel inside. There was also a statue of Jesus which unfortunately was covered. According to the manong, the eyes of the statue were diamonds. Whew!

Afterwards, it was time to visit another ancestral house in Silay. This mansion was owned by the Lizares family. It was popularly known as the house of Tanang Dica. We were turned off by the pricey entrance fee. P150 or P200 per head. Can't recall the exact price. In fairness to them, the house had a lot of old stuff inside. Antique furniture, utensils, etc. There was also a tourist guide who accompanied us. But over-all, we still think the price was too much.

After our tour of the ancestral houses, we decided it was time to eat lunch. We decided to try another one of Trish's recommendations - Chicken House. We both had chicken inasal. Medyo gutom so we had 3 orders. We shared the 3rd order. The chicken was good. Yum yum.

After lunch, we decided to go to the L'Fisher Hotel to meet my friend, Maja, for the football tickets. Unfortunately, she was still busy so we decided to explore the city again.

After leaving the hotel, we saw Calea, a cake place that was highly recommended by Toto (of Gala Pinoy Redux) and Trish. We decided there was still room for dessert so we went inside. Rhuel had the mud pie/ice cream cake and I had a chocolate cake. Both were super good. We also think the prices were reasonable. We even saw Anton del Rosario and Aly Borromeo of the Philippine Azkals, the Philippine men's football team.

After the sumptuous dessert, we went to the provincial capitol. It was really nice. It has some sort of lagoon pa.

Afterwards, we ended up at the Bacolod Museum. It was nice. Can't recall how much the entrance fee was. Pero minimal lang naman. Michelle was our tour guide. The museum contained information and things relevant to Bacolod which was nice.

Last stop was at the San Sebastian or the Bacolod Cathedral. It was huge but nothing special really. Sad lang because some parts of the city looked like Quiapo - chaotic, dirty, etc. Parang city na talaga.

Then we headed back to L'Fisher to get our tickets. We were so surprised because we got VIP complimentary tickets. Hooray. :) Thanks Maja Ano!

Then it was dinner time. We tried another one of Trish's recommendations - Bob's. We actually ended up at Cafe Bob's. Rhuel had a sandwich while I had some pasta yata. Can't recall. We also tried their ferrero rocher-flavored ice cream. It was yummy. :) We even saw Charlie Cojuangco.

We rode the jeep on our way back to Circle Inn. Medyo scary. I felt as if I was riding a jeep in Manila. Yung feeling na pwede ka ma-hold up. Tsktsk. Anyway, on our way to Circle Inn, we saw another Bob's. Not sure if that was the Bob's Trish was referring to. Hehe.