Trishia and AC were kind enough to bring Edra and me to Cubao Expo. We met at McDonald’s Taft, rode LRT 1 (Pedro Gil), transferred to LRT 2 (via Doroteo Jose) and got off at Cubao station. From there, we had to walk a couple of blocks before reaching the building. Aside from the signage, it was nondescript and if you didn’t know better, you might just pass by without taking a look at the treasures inside.
Since we arrived early, most of the stores were closed. Apparently, most open at 3 PM onward. Anyway, I like the place because it was full of nice and old things you would not see in regular stores/malls: from vintage toys to vases, cameras, vinyl records, cassette tapes, typewriters, portraits, furniture, books and a lot more. In one store I saw framed Mickey Mouse money, the ones used during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines and I desperately wanted to buy it (among other things that caught my fancy) but they were kind of expensive. Most of the shops do not allow picture taking. Thank God for the reading room where most of our photos were taken.
Trishia whom I also call Dora.
In the Reading Room I saw T.A.P. or Tree art pillows. According to the sign, for every TAP you buy, the store owner would plant a tree in your name in coordination with Baguio City’s Cordillera Ecological Center. It was a good cause as well as a good marketing strategy to encourage people to buy. Reminds me of TOMS and BOBS and others who make consumers feel good about themselves.
And I bought one partly because I like trees and mostly because I have “plant a tree and name it RANI” on my bucket list. But I did not scratch the item off yet because I want Rani the tree to be planted by me (rhyme not intended). This purchase could be some sort of down payment. One pillow costs 100 php and the designs are really cute.
I also bought this lip balm because it was looking curtly at me, it was Japanese and the predominant colors were red and black, incidentally my two most favorites. It was only 50 pesos and it tastes and looks good. Guess I’d be able to scratch off “finish a chapstick/tube without losing it” on my bucket list.
Saw these necklaces made from two joined soft drink crowns. Chabs and I thought of Dai when we saw “Aisshhh” because of a certain night at Maru spawning “Vssshhh”. We knew Dai wouldn’t wear it if we buy her one so we didn’t (palusot).
And an advance underarm pigmentations whitening soap I saw at the counter. Filipinos are still head over heels with a lighter complexion eh. Is it because of colonial mentality? Anyway, I was laughing because just the day before, I was having an underarm conversation with Trix, Dar and Dams.
After roaming around, we decided to have late lunch at Bellini’s, the restaurant famous for the John Lloyd-Bea movie One More Chance. The place was deserted and we were the only customers left after a lone lady finished her meal.
The food was a bit pricey for us professional bums so we only ordered two pasta, a pizza, and one dessert. According to the waiter, their serving was only good for one person but actually, with pizza, two persons could share.
We had spaghetti Pesto. It tastes the way it looks, forgettable and not impressive.
We also had their best seller Spaghetti Tartufo Funghi con Prosciuto (Mushroom Sauce and Prosciutto ham). Apparently, you could request for different kinds of pasta like Penne and Fettuccinne. The waiter suggested Spaghetti since we would be sharing. This one was delicious especially the ham.
Their menu was a bit hard to read for us non-Italian speakers. Some offerings include “Gnocci Ragu con Funghi” and “Bucatini Amatriciana” (Thank you MunchPunch!). Take for example our pizza, it was Quattro Formaggi in the menu. In English, Four cheese. It was very good (thin crust, creamy) and the large serving was worth it at 550 php.
For dessert, we decided to try their caramel dark chocolate cake called Obama. Expensive at 200 pesos per slice but the serving was big the four of us weren’t able to finish it. The cake was served warm and it gave justice to its name, chewy, caramel-y, and chocolate-y. I am not a big fan of cakes and anything sweet in general but this was really good.
Since we had the place all to ourselves, we stayed there long, catching up and exchanging stories after not seeing each other for more than 50 days. Again, good food plus good friends equals awesome time. In the middle of our meal, an Italian which I think is Mr. Bellini greeted us. He was nice, too bad we forgot to take a picture with him.
After Cubao Expo, we went to a nearby second-hand clothes store. I saw a really cute dinosaur costume and was tempted to buy it at 200 pesos but my reasoning won over my impulsiveness. Where will I use the relatively cheap dinosaur costume? It would probably just rot in my closet until my mother sees it and brings it home to the province. Gah! Should’ve bought it.
AC smiling at the camera because we were able to sit during our train journey. If only human traffic in LRT and MRT are always like this.