in SwitzerlandLife Abroad

10 Things I’m Loving Now – chocolates in my bag

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Two boys used to go to school together. One of them had a bad habit of stealing the chocolates from his friend’s bag. One day he felt guilty about what he was doing… So he wrote a letter as he didn’t have the courage to confess directly. “I have been stealing your chocolates… I’m sorry for that…’ The other friend smiled reading it, and sent a letter back: “Don’t worry. I know about it… That’s why I keep chocolates in the same place in my bag…’.   – from Paolo Coehlo’s blog

From life’s simple stuff to grandiose pleasures, bring it on!

1. Learning French

JUST CAME ACROSS. FrancoPhil, the 2011 French cultural season in the Philippines, is a play on the word “Francophile,” meaning a lover of French culture, and is a celebration of the ties that bind French and Filipino culture. Click on the image to learn more about this event.

Around two years ago, perhaps out of boredom, I decided to take French classes at Alliance Française de Manille, without any plan as to where and how I can apply what I’d learn. Little did I know that it is going to be a starting point to a rather bigger purpose.

I can’t take away the sly grin after reading my first blog post for the Apprendre la langue Française series. Goal A (write an essay in French) will always entail a battle between character accents and phonetic sounds. I was able to do Goal B (watch a full-length French film) and the film I watched, well, was to vivid for kids to enjoy. I’d just faint on the floor if I couldn’t keep up with Goal C (engage into long conversations in French).

When I am too lazy, I nonchalantly talk back, “Est-ce que vous parlez anglais, s’il vous (super) plâit?” English is still sticking out, apparently.

2. Sipping English Breakfast of Tetley Tea

Speaking of the devil, there is also something “English” I am currently hooked. In these quiet afternoons, Tetley’s Tea’s English Breakfast is becoming a good company at work that keeps me awake and steady. I even put some milk on it, and it tastes somewhat close to my favorite tea latte I used to order at Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf (back in the Philippines).

3. Also sipping Nespresso
Nespresso coffee is the best for me.

If it’s the British Breakfast tea that rules my afternoon, it’s a shot of French espresso (or Swiss, because it’s Nestlé‘s?) that starts my morning. Actually, I still prefer an instant coffee but it seems more time-efficient to drink espresso in the morning rush instead. The caffeine kick is twice as fast as well. Not so bad at all.

4. Craving for Pad Thai
The site says it’s got the perfect pad thai recipe. Wanna try? Click on the image.

There is this Thaï lady (unnamed, we call her simply as that) who comes to our office on certain days and delivers our pre-ordered Thaï menu. I just love her Pad Thaï. Seriously. I wish I could prepare one for myself. Well, it all begins with knowing the recipe, right?

5. Watching CNN
Anderson Cooper at CNN

I’m getting a good dose of world news everyday from CNN.

6. Catching up with friends at Facebook

Our recent gimmick in Facebook, a friend of mine just created a private group for us and he named it after a fictitious coffee house where Rachel, Joey, Monica, Phoebe, Chandler and Ross meet and spend their free time conversing. Yep, it’s Central Perk from the famous American TV series, F.R.I.E.N.D.S.

7. Reading anything via Google Reader

I enjoy reading during my spare time and I am glad that sharing it to everyone is just so fast and easy nowadays. Google Reader has been one of the most reliable web tools I am using so far. On top of it all, it’s free!

8. Editing photos at Picasa

Another best tool I got from Google. Picasa’s indeed a handy and easy-to-use application in editing photos for people like who are on-the-go. The best things in life are those that are free. This is one of them. I love Google!

9. Trying rhubarb pie for the first time

Rhubarbs are herbacious perennial plants and have large triangular-shaped leaves, which somewhat resemble to taro leaves (in Filipino, gabi). In contrast, the stalks of rhubarb are commonly used in pies and other foods for their tart flavor.

In my opinion, the rhubarb pie has a texture of a Filipino buko (coconut) pie but has a taste of a lemon pie. It goes pretty well with hot tea. Try it, you’ll love it!

10. Walking with derby shoes
It is meant for walking, not horse-riding.

A Derby or Gibson (also called Blücher, or an Oxford in the United States) is a style of shoe characterized by shoelace eyelet tabs that are sewn on top of the vamp, a construction that is also sometimes referred to as an “open lacing” where the tongue cut in one piece with the forepart.  The Blucher design is named after Prussian general Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher, one of Napoleon’s more formidable opponents who decided his troops needed better shoes and commissioned a boot with side pieces lapped over the front. This design was adopted by armies across Europe, became a trendy sporting and hunting shoe in the 1850s, and then became appropriate for town affairs in the turn of the century. The Blücher is a step down in dressiness from the oxford.

I’m happy to report that I’ve got a pair to enjoy, yipee. Well, I also have a keen eye for male fashion, you know.

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