2016

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Witnessing the whole drama while performing my professional duties is something money can't buy. It's enriching my life and my being.

[PERSONAL STORIES, SPECIAL FEATURE] ► Saying these two words "Thank You" could mean a lot. It only have eight letters yet its message is powerful. It could cross borders. It could unite differences. It could strengthen relationships and let's admit it, at least once in our lives, its message once penetrated our hearts.

In my work setting, I meet all types of people: young, old, poor, millionaire, divorced, convicted criminals, priests, battered wives, rape victims, drug users, HIV carriers, prostitutes, pregnant women, young girls who just had an abortion, politicians, beggars, single moms, businessmen and sometimes, your enemy.

Thank You, My Patients, for Teaching Me Life Lessons
MEETING DIFFERENT TYPES OF PEOPLE MORE THAN I could imagine to provide their health needs is not an easy task. I used to be judgmental when a patient confesses to me he has multiple s#xual partners, hence his STD. I used to look down (figuratively) to a prostitute who inquires to me about laboratory tests to ensure that her reproductive health is in good condition. And when the person who scammed you runs to you for help and still has the nerve to spread lies to tarnish your image, your role changes from a revengeful character to a superhero. Superhero in the sense that you still have to help him/her despite the fact that he/she wants to pull you down.

There are also clients/patients who would mock, humiliate, publicly embarrass or treat me like a slave as if I didn't study for four years in college and passed the board examination. Although that could be the case, I still have to please them. For a physically and mentally demanding, patience-depleting job that does not pay high, you need to endure all of these things. If you have a little patience, I tell you, you won't endure the job—and before I forget to mention, yes, I am a professional nurse working at the hospital. As a nurse, my role is to offer tender loving care whoever the person is, even if he considers you an enemy.

In spite of the challenges I'm experiencing in my work, working as a nurse widened my perspective in life. It broadened my horizon of humanity.

At times, deep in your sleep at 3 AM, you would wake up with a call from the hospital requesting you to report immediately because a pregnant woman needs to have an emergency Cesarian section and the team is understaffed, hence, your service. I have to wake up even if it's against my will because I have to help save two lives. My sleep can wait, but not the lives of two souls in trouble. In spite of these mandatory sacrifices and duties, I still want to thank all my patients, here's why:

At the operating room, the surgeon asked for the knife. She cut the skin of the pregnant woman. Blood spewed. After a few minutes of cutting the different layers of flesh, the surgeon took out the head of the child. She pulled it out from the womb. Everybody was cheering for that healthy little boy. But wait, there's more. It's a twin! We helped these two little souls claim their right to life.

You know what's the best part? When the mother sees her babies for the first time, you're literally seeing the happiest face in the world and that's so contagious. The daddy waiting at the nursery, on the other hand, exhibits the best genuine, heartfelt, passionate smile in the world you could ever see that time and it's equally contagious.

So basically, I'm thanking my patients for opening the windows of my heart—that my work is more than a job, it's a mission. Touching scenes I see in my work setting are enriching my life.



Thank You, Mom and Dad
WITNESSING THE WHOLE DRAMA OF GIVING BIRTH while performing my professional duties is something money can't buy. It's enriching my life and my being. It has made me realize and understand the true meaning of unconditional love my parents had given (and still giving) me. It makes me imagine the day I was born. I know, my mom and dad also exhibited those faces on the first day of my existence, and even until now—everytime I make them proud.

So thank you mom and dad for my existence. I wouldn't be writing this thank you message now if you didn't give me the opportunity to live and although I am not the most perfect son out there, I will try to do my best for you to be proud of me. I also wish that this piece I've written would make you believe that your son is the best story teller in the world (as per parent's judgment and I know you'll be in favor of me always in terms of positivity). Haha.

Ending Thoughts
To all my patients at the hospital, I would also want to thank you. You've made me realize that life is too short and it's a shame to waste it. Thank you for making me a mature individual. Whether you attempted to commit suicide, you committed abortion or you are HIV positive, I'm not here to judge. I'm the one you can count on to whenever you need support and help because looking back on my every experience of assisting a mother in giving birth to her child, all of us became that little soul who was born of innocence. If I didn't meet you to learn your past and present struggles and condition, I think I'm still the old close-minded person now. Thank you for entrusting your lives and personal secrets to me. You've taught me to love others not related to me even on my worrisome days. You've taught me to offer care even on the day I care less about my self. You've taught me that there is always a chance to change for the better and become that person who would fight for his life and dreams no matter what.

Everytime I feel like everything seems to fail, I'd try to remember the times when I take part in helping a little soul claim his right to life out of the womb on their first journey in the world. We were born with a purpose and now that I'm already an adult, I think my purpose is getting clear. My patients helped me understand my purpose in life.

To my mom and dad, thank you for my existence and the love you've given me. To my patients, you guys are my inspirations. I AM A BETTER PERSON NOW and more matured than ever before. Thank you for enriching my life with the life lessons you've taught me as I embark on this journey called LIFE. | end |




At your service, nurse Edmar.

#AirAsia #ThankYou
This post was inspired by #AirAsiaPh's #ThankYou video that aims to spread the spirit of gratitude this Christmas season. Check out the video below and learn to appreciate the simplest and smallest things in life that become big when we have that attitude of gratitude.

How about you? Who would you like to thank this Christmas?




No Applicable Map to Show

MAP OF DAGUPAN
► FOOTNOTES, DISCLAIMERS, ACKNOWLEDGMENT, ETC 

[1] This post was filed under the category "Special Features." There is a section below where you can see other related posts from this category. 

[2] All photos are mine. 

[3] The insights, condition and name of places or properties I mentioned here are based on the facts and situation on the day of my visit. Take note that you may have a different experience when you try or see the properties or places mentioned here. Names of places and properties may also change by time so it's not my responsibility to update all the information on this blog because once published, I already consider it an archive and I won't update my narratives because I want them to become my references of what have happened in the past. I'm very particular of the dates because I want my amazing readers to understand that I am writing stories based on my perspective and insights on the day of my visit. You can see dates almost everywhere on this blog. Exempted from this rule are my travel guide posts that need to be updated.

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This post is a documentation of how the City of San Fernando in La Union dressed herself (city proper) this Christmas season 2016.

[SAN FERNANDO, LA UNION PROVINCE, ILOCOS REGION, LUZON ISLAND, PHILIPPINES] ► Christmas spirit is everywhere in the Philippines—from small villages to big cities. In the capital city of San Fernando in La Union (often shortened to SFLU to distinguish from its Pampanga counterpart), decorations signifying the Christmas season brightened the city proper.

A short walk in SFLU's city proper would already expose you to the Christmas trees, symbols and decorations that reflect the Filipino Christmas spirit. This post is a documentation of how the City of San Fernando in La Union dressed herself (city proper) this Christmas season 2016.

The San Fernando City Hall
Pearly white Christmas lights illuminated the city hall transforming its minimalist facade and design (and the building as a whole) catchy and burning with the fire of the Christmas spirit. Its surrounding was also equally alluring releasing the Christmas nostalgia in me.

San Fernando City Plaza
The Christmas decoration in the city plaza tended to balance the mix so that it would neither appear overdone nor underdone.

Its simple three-kings-inspired decor back of its city plaza stage as seen from the National Highway effectively brought its Christmas message to the public. Indeed, less is more. Simplicity is beauty.


Like any other city in the Philippines, the city plaza of San Fernando also put up its own version of a giant Christmas tree.

The giant public Christmas tree was illuminated with red lights soaring over the busy rush hour in the city. I actually took these photos while desperate commuters patiently waited for a bus space, not necessarily a bus seat, everyone just wanted a space inside the bus where they could stand just to go home. So while waiting for a bus space, I roamed around the city proper and took these photos.


It's nice to see the city of San Fernando with the Christmas spirit living in it. Actually, this day, I visited this city with both ▼ GOOD VIBES AND NOT SO WANTED ENDING

[SAN FERNANDO] ► December Good Vibes and a Not-So-Wanted Ending
_____________________________________
Rush hour in San Fernando is equivalent to all bus seats occupied and the only option you have to pick is to grab a space inside the bus where you could stand.

and witnessing the city proper with the colors of Christmas is just one portion of the whole story.

Like what I've always done, I blogged about this because there is only one 2016. Next year will be a different story so I wrote this story as a reference in the future whenever I'll like to look back. | end |

Related: How These Cities Dressed Themselves This Christmas 2016?

Map Showing the Location of #SanFernando

MAP OF SAN FERNANDO, LA UNION
► FOOTNOTES, DISCLAIMERS, ACKNOWLEDGMENT, ETC 

[1] This post was filed under the category "Special Features." There is a section below where you can see other related posts from this category. 

[2] The maps I used on this post are from maps.google.com.ph.

[3] All photos are mine.

[4] The insights, condition and name of places or properties I mentioned here are based on the facts and situation on the day of my visit. Take note that you may have a different experience when you try or see the properties or places mentioned here. Names of places and properties may also change by time so it's not my responsibility to update all the information on this blog because once published, I already consider it an archive and I won't update my narratives because I want them to become my references of what have happened in the past. I'm very particular of the dates because I want my amazing readers to understand that I am writing stories based on my perspective and insights on the day of my visit. You can see dates almost everywhere on this blog. Exempted from this rule are my travel guide posts that need to be updated.

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Giant jars are the main highlights of this year's Christmas decorations in Vigan. Huge well-lighted jar-shaped displays were placed in key landmarks and structures in the city.
VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016

[VIGAN, ILOCOS SUR PROVINCE, ILOCOS REGION, LUZON ISLAND, PHILIPPINES] ► Year 2016 is about to end and before me and my blog bid goodbye to 2016, I would like to write a general summary of what have transpired this Christmas 2016 season in Vigan. I obliged myself to write this because there is only one 2016. I basically write articles like this for me to look back in the future while contributing to the written history of Vigan using words and photos.

The Giant Jar Concept
GIANT JARS ARE THE MAIN HIGHLIGHTS OF this year's Christmas decorations in Vigan. Huge well-lighted jar-shaped displays were placed in key landmarks and structures in the city. Vigan has an age-old tradition of jar-making. Those huge jar decorations represent the jar-making industry of Vigan.

These jars were placed in front of the city hall, at the Vigan City Convention Center, Vigan Public Market, Simbaan-a-Bassit, Plaza Burgos and Vigan (Saint Paul) Metropolitan Cathedral.

VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016
VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016
VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016
VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016

No Christmas Tree in Front of the City Hall
TRADITIONALLY, FOR THE PAST YEARS, A GIANT Christmas tree is usually placed in front of the Vigan City Hall. This year, the city hall opted to highlight the digital Christmas show projected on its façade, hence, making its Christmas public presents more entertaining and interactive.

It's a new innovation. The City Hall offered something unconventional.

VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016
The Giant Christmas Tree was Transferred to Plaza Burgos
TO GIANT CHRISTMAS TREE FANATIC RESIDENTS OF Vigan, don't feel sad 'cause the giant Christmas tree we have always anticipated just transferred to Plaza Burgos. Sometimes, it's also good to make some changes and I think its new location made it more pretty and mighty. Unlike the previous giant Christmas trees placed in front of the City Hall, this Christmas tree in Plaza Burgos has no obstruction 360 degrees. I think the new location is equally gorgeous.

VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016
The Ilocos Sur Capitol
THE ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL DIDN'T TOTALLY DITCH the traditional Christmas tree. However, what they highlighted this year are its toy factory-inspired Christmas decorations which I think became a big hit among the locals.

The toy factory platform became a favorite place to take photos for both tourists and locals. At night, the two mabolo trees in front of the Capitol are shining bright like a diamond.

VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016

ANOTHER INNOVATION WAS INTRODUCED BY THE VIGAN LGU this year—this is the Christmas night market 2016. If I'm not mistaken, this is the first time Vigan had a Christmas night market.

Commodities are usually sold inside the Vigan Public Market utilizing its central alley prior to and during Christmas day. The Vigan Christmas shopping frenzy was the same this year. The night market addition was a great idea. The Vigan Public Market segment of Jose Singson Street was utilized for the Christmas night market. Food stalls lined the street. However, one thing dominated the expanse of this night market. Guess what? The ukay-ukay!

VIGAN CHRISTMAS 2016
Video
BELOW IS A VIDEO VERSION OF THIS blog post. For more videos like this, subscribe to my YouTube channel.


Ending Thoughts
MY HOMETOWN VIGAN CONTINUES TO EVOLVE. AS a blogger based and making a living here, my blogging role has changed from being just a hobby to a necessity. No one is compelling me to write stories about Vigan but every time I receive a private message or an email asking me various question about Vigan, I know my role as a Bigueño blogger has changed.

For this Christmas season 2016, I made this summary post to inform all the Bigueños all over the world what their hometown Vigan has done. As I've mentioned above, it's my honor to contribute to Vigan's written history on my own little way. | end |

More Stories Covering Vigan Christmas Season 2016
HOW VIGAN DRESSED HERSELF THIS CHRISTMAS SEASON 2016?

Related: How These Cities Dressed Themselves This Christmas 2016?

Map Showing the Location of #Vigan

MAP OF VIGAN
► FOOTNOTES, DISCLAIMERS, ACKNOWLEDGMENT, ETC 

[1] This post was filed under the category "Special Features." There is a section below where you can see other related posts from this category.

[2] The maps I used on this post are from maps.google.com.ph.

[3] All photos are mine.

[4] The insights, condition and name of places or properties I mentioned here are based on the facts and situation on the day of my visit. Take note that you may have a different experience when you try or see the properties or places mentioned here. Names of places and properties may also change by time so it's not my responsibility to update all the information on this blog because once published, I already consider it an archive and I won't update my narratives because I want them to become my references of what have happened in the past. I'm very particular of the dates because I want my amazing readers to understand that I am writing stories based on my perspective and insights on the day of my visit. You can see dates almost everywhere on this blog. Exempted from this rule are my travel guide posts that need to be updated.

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The Capitol's Christmas decoration this year is toy factory-inspired—that's basically the highlight.
ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE, DECORATIONS

[VIGAN, ILOCOS SUR PROVINCE, ILOCOS REGION, LUZON ISLAND PHILIPPINES] ► Here I am again, featuring and writing stories about Vigan. Well, you know, I basically want to do an encyclopedia-type article in the future about Vigan in general and its festivals, important events, historical spots and structures. To do this, I need to continually document the happenings and sights in Vigan from season to season. So for example, in five years time, I could create an article about a certain place or event based on the facts and materials I have gathered for that span of 5 years. On the other hand, doing this means I'm contributing to Vigan's written history.

Christmas season has come and like any other cities in the world that celebrate Christmas, my city Vigan has its way to celebrate the season and one of those is decorating public buildings or structures.

The Ilocos Sur Capitol is a good example for this. Every year, the provincial government of Ilocos Sur decorate it with Christmas lights and displays. The past years, the Ilocos Sur Capitol has always emphasized a giant Christmas tree. This year, it seems that the LGU is following a local trend like what happened in Vigan City Hall wherein the city government opted to ditch the traditional giant Christmas Tree.

For this year, the Ilocos Sur capitol still has the Christmas tree but unlike the past years, it's no longer the highlight. It's no longer as grand and big as the previous years and I don't see any problem with that—better than spending thousands/millions of pesos for a giant Christmas tree that stays there for few weeks without contributing any positive change to the society.

Check out the photos below and see how our Capitol transformed this 2016 Christmas season.

ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE, DECORATIONS
ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE, DECORATIONS
ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE, DECORATIONS
ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE, DECORATIONS
ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE, DECORATIONS
ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE, DECORATIONS
ILOCOS SUR CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE, DECORATIONS

The Capitol's Christmas decoration this year is toy factory-inspired—that's basically the highlight. If you can't seem to see the toy-factory concept on the photos, better yet, pay Vigan a visit if you're just living nearby and see it for yourself. To my fellow Ilocano readers, what do you think of the Capitol's Christmas decorations this year? Any thoughts?

(I would also love to hear the thoughts of non-Ilocano friends out there.) | end |

More Stories Covering Vigan Christmas Season 2016
▼ HOW VIGAN DRESSED HERSELF THIS CHRISTMAS SEASON 2016?[VIGAN] ► How Vigan Dressed Herself This Christmas Season 2016?

Giant jars are the main highlights of this year's Christmas decorations in Vigan. Huge well-lighted jar-shaped displays were placed in key landmarks and structures in the city.



Map Showing the Location of #Vigan

MAP OF VIGAN
► FOOTNOTES, DISCLAIMERS, ACKNOWLEDGMENT, ETC 

[1] This post was filed under the category "Night Explorations." There is a section below where you can see other related posts from this category. 

[2] The maps I used on this post are from maps.google.com.ph.

[3] All photos are mine.

[4] The insights, condition and name of places or properties I mentioned here are based on the facts and situation on the day of my visit. Take note that you may have a different experience when you try or see the properties or places mentioned here. Names of places and properties may also change by time so it's not my responsibility to update all the information on this blog because once published, I already consider it an archive and I won't update my narratives because I want them to become my references of what have happened in the past. I'm very particular of the dates because I want my amazing readers to understand that I am writing stories based on my perspective and insights on the day of my visit. You can see dates almost everywhere on this blog. Exempted from this rule are my travel guide posts that need to be updated.

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