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I ALMOST MISSED MY FLIGHT FROM LOS ANGELES TO MANILA !!!

Solo travelling is not all glitz and glamour (obviously).

I don't consider myself well traveled enough yet but I sure had a lot of airport moments.

I'm a frequent "excess baggage" flyer. 
(But I tell you it has improved through time)
I have the habit of packing a lot- like really a lot. I used to think about all the things that I might need and of course I always end up using one third of everything. Lol. I have all these scenarios of events that might happen and think of all the clothes that would match it. 

Anyway, I'm learning. From suitcases I'm now transitioning to backpacks. Haha 
For travelling that requires a lot of movement, backpack got your back. 

Anyway back to the topic, I've had a lot of (mis) adventures especially when it comes to my baggage and punctuality. I cant count how many instances I had where I was unpacking my stuffs in the airport. Really. 
One time I was flying from North Carolina to San Francisco and my checked baggage weigh more than 50kilos (YESSSSSSSSS GIRLLLLL!) so the attendant told me to put as much as I can in my carry on trolley (which was freaking full already). I swear, I could feel my bag about to burst that time. Haha I even had to tie my scarves on my trolley. 

There were also moments when I fly domestic and I just pray to Jesus that they won't freaking weigh my carryon because I know it's more than 7kg-all the dang time. 

I remember for my flight to HK, I didnt purchase any checked in baggage because I thought they won't weigh it. I was just so freaking lucky because few hours before my boarding, I tried to ask one of my friend and told me that they'll weigh the carry on. and he was so sure about it especially with that airlines.  So behold, I immediately paid for my checked baggage online which saved me a whole lot of bucks because god knows how much would I've paid if it were in the counter. 


Also, punctuality. I never really had any punctuality problems overseas because I try to be as early as I can but gurl, I had way too many moments going to NAIA Airport. Never underestimate the Manila Traffic. For the past few months, I've been flying to and from manila. I never imagined myself actually staying in Manila tbh. I never really liked Manila until I realized that it could be nice too. :) 


Anyway, Manila traffic is the worst.  
I can still remember I paid P600 just to reach Paranaque (uber)
Like for real it was all because of the traffic.


So yeah, as far as from what I can recall. It was a Wednesday morning and I have my flight back to Manila at around 9 am. Surprise! I was still at the skyway at 8:50 am. No, I am not kidding you. I was actually checking the prices for the next flight. It was hella expensive (I know!!!). I was literally praying that I'd make it! That a miracle would happen! That all these cars will just give way coz I'm on SOS. That time I promised the lord that I'd be always on time ever again. I swear! 
The driver was having sweats also. (Haha; I can laugh now). He was also very much pressured. I know he was trying his best to be fast. Rapidoooooo pls! It was really intense, my friend even said that I was crazy for still being at the skyway. 


fast forward (literally), I rushed to the counter and was told by the attendant to hurry up because they were boarding already. (Good thing I was just bringing a backpack that time --see? I'm improving) I was running so fast through the gates. Like really. On my dress. I think I had some eyes on me but oh well for sure everyone was just thinking the same thing - she's late

So yeah, I was panting at the boarding gate. I made it! I FREAKING MADE IT. I was shaking when I got into my seat. I messaged my friend/s that I made it. Haha. Then one airport guy came up inside the plane and went into our aisle and asked about my details. I was like "what? why?" . *drum rolls pls*  I LEFT MY WALLET IN THEIR COUNTER. GOD LOVES ME! I was so thankful- Christ! Cant believe how blessed I was that time! I had all my money (of course) in my wallet and all my cards and important stuffs. I was so thankful to everyone that time! :)

Also, one time while we were on our way going back to Manila from Bataan.
We experienced some car problems and it was raining midway to manila. To cut it short, I was 5 mins away from boarding time. still didn't miss my flight because it got delayed! Well, that was an exception tho because I may have kinda wanted to miss my flight that time but yeah.



ALRIGHT, I HEAR YOU. 
BACK TO THE TITLE OF THE POST. 


Yes, last 2016 I almost missed my flight back to Manila and if I did, god knows what will my parents do to me. It would've cost us a whoooping dollars if I missed it. Missing my flight was really not an option that time.  

So yeah, it's a good thing that y'all know that homegirl used to travel heavy. (Girl, you dont know how much emotional baggage I bring every time I travel!! Hahaha) but yeah let me show you my flight details back to mnl. 






As you can see, I was leaving on the 5th of July. A day after the 4th of July! Rings a bell? 
So we were out in San Francisco during the 4th of July! We watched the fireworks and oh yeah we were actually pulled over by a police because my cousin beat the red light. I was like in the movies, you guys! Haha. I was snapchatting that time because yknow being pulled over only happened in the movies (for young Tanya). My cousin didn't notice the red light actually and the police gave him a ticket. Anyway, off we went to see the fireworks. I was quite worried that time because I know I'll be leaving the next morning and I still havent packed! (Oh wait! Did I ever mention that I am such a last minute packer? I sweaaaaaaaaaaaaar! As much as I plan to do it weeks before or even days, I always end up packing hours before my flight). 

I was also feeling sick during the last week of my stay in U.S. I had such a tight schedule because days before that I just came back from New York for my cousin's 18th birthday. I  was in New York for a week and we all know, It's the city that never sleeps! Me and my relatives who were NYC based gave me a run down of the city (it was my 2nd time to be there but my 1st visit was just 3 days I think? so yeah) So when I was in back in San Francisco, I was also out almost every afternoon exploring downtown. Have I told you that the coldest summer I had was in San Francisco? It was around 10 degrees celsius there and it was a summer okay, a summer. But I loved it! I loved the cool breeze. 


Anyway July 5 came. I barely had any sleep from the 4th celebration and packing. Yes, I was freaking packing only hours before my flight. I had roughly 2 hours of sleep. We went to the airport- excess of 2 kilos but the man was kind enough to let me go. Hehe ;) And then we had to repack my hand carry because it was too big. LOL, I then had to wear this huge GSW shirt over my clothes to give space. Haha I didn't took any photo of myself that time! Hahaha and oh yeah, my nose was bleeding 30 minutes before boarding. I was honestly scared. Lol, I thought I'd faint or something because I was really not feeling well and was so stressed. My family was worried! Hi Ma :D

Anyway when I was about to board, I was asked to leave one of my hand carry. I had 2 hand carry btw. A mini stroller and a beach bag. I wanted to leave the beach bag because I don't want to be dragging it every time. However, the ground attendant preferred to get my stroller anyway.

So off we left, I actually was confused because it wasn't clear whether where will I get my stroller (which has all of my important gadgets and stuff)

I assumed I'd get it at terminal 4. 

Little did I know that assumption would almost put me in freaking trouble.

When we landed, those who were having a connecting flight were asked to take the shuttle.
But I didn't.
I needed my stroller.


So I was at terminal 4, waiting for my bag at the carousel area.
minutes passed by. I was getting worried because there weren't any bags coming out.
everything was clear. my boarding time is getting nearer.

So I went to the baggage office something and surprise, I'd be getting my bag in MANILA.
IN MANILA. HOLY GUACAMOLE.

Then I hurried up! Alright. I had to basically go to the exit and go back to the check in counter. I found the check in booth kios. Tried to input my details but error. Error! *sweattts*

So I asked help from the staff and was told that I couldn't check in there because
I WAS AT THE WRONG TERMINAL 
 I WAS IN THE DOMESTIC AIRPORT/TERMINAL. 

girlllll, yow sistah was pale af. How am I gonna get to Tom Bradley International?
"Walking would be difficult as it is far from here. You can take a taxi but it's quite difficult to get one here".

Lady, I don't have any time to look for a cab.
but anyway I rush to ask another person and she told me that I could still go there by feet.

And mind you, I had a beach bag with me and a leather bag (so sturdy yet so heavy).


No that's not my baggage. Haha but you see that thing where the bags are placed?


Some airports give it for free but at the domestic airport- it wasn't. Costs about $5.
Of course, I was getting stressed, tired, all the feelings. And I have little less than 30 minutes to get to Tom Bradley Intl Airport (I SWEAAAAAAAAAAAAAR I WAS REALLY NERVOUS ALREADY!) 
I CAN'T MISS MY FLIGHT AND BUYING ANOTHER TICKET IS NOT AN OPTION (Just imagine how much would a ticket cost if I'll purchase it same day -LA-MANILA) My dad would probably ask me to go find a parachute. Lol hahaha). I WAS REALLY GONNA GET MYSELF IN TROUBLE (because it was my fault).


i really didn't want to spend $5 for a cart. YES, I still had the time to be frugal at that situation. LOL. 
I was so luckkkyy though, there was one cart which was pulled out and I see no one using it so home girl took it right away and ran! I had to survive okay! Hahaha I just took the cart for free put all my stuff and ran. I was wearing boots btw! girl, I dont care what you think but I can't afford to miss my flight. 

I arrived at Tom Bradley Intl Airport (catching my breath) and was at the Japan Airlines Kiosk when the japanese ladies were so surprised to see me. They were surprised because I was already checked-in and why one earth was I there... and it was almost time! "Everyone's already there". 
Girrrrrl, I needed to go back again to immigration/customs.  YES, AGAIN. WHEN IF I JUST TOOK THE SHUTTLE, I COULD'VE BEEN IN THE LOUNGE ENJOYING MY BEEF JERKY. 
 It was a hell of line. I was praying really - checking the time all the time. When the IO checked my boarding time, she was like "Oh! I hope you make it!". 
I HOPE SO. 


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ANYWAY, I MADE IT. HAHAHA
THANK GOD!
I MANAGED TO FIT ALL THOSE  HAPPENINGS IN AN HOUR AND A HALF.  

********************************************************************
So lemme tell you, don't pack too much and always make sure that things are clear. Also, don't wear boots. If you're up to some running - just don't. Hahaha but yeah, that experience would have probably been really costly if I just cried and didn't take any action. I slept almost the entire flight to Japan and missed my food (I usually will wait for the food then sleep). I had to call the flight attendant and request for my missed food. Haha I can't imagine how exhausting it was but now I can just smile and laugh about it.:)
P.S. I know some had worse. 
On my next post, I'd probably share to you how Delta Airlines gave me $700. 

That's all for now!
Adios :* 

xoxo
Tanya








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Surviving Sagada

After almost a month... Here's my Sagada Trip!
I enjoyed my recent trip so much I needed some time to contain all those feelings. Haha just kidding, work was eating me up so I had barely any time to write. But today's a Sunday, I woke  up at 1 am and now I'm more than eager to finish this post. 

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SURPRISE! I WENT TO SAGADA. 

background: no plans going to Sagada at all nor had any idea about it except that it was in the popular film, That Thing Called Tadhana 

so here's a quick wiki for y'all

Sagada is a town in the Cordillera Mountains, within the Philippines’ Mountain Province. Echo Valley’s hanging coffins are displayed high on cliffs, while centuries-old coffins are stacked in burial sites like Lumiang Cave. The nearby Sumaguing Cave has unusual limestone formations. To the north, Bomod-ok Falls has a natural swimming pool. Rice terraces are carved into the area's surrounding mountainsides.

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Alright?

So before going to Sagada, I went to buy some souvenirs in Banaue and my survival kit for Sagada. 
SURVIVAL KIT?  No, I didn't buy any weapons or whatsoever you're thinking now. 

******* scroll down for my survival kit******






















CANNED GOODS. YES, MAMIII. GOTTA PACK UP THOSE CANNED GOODS. 
BES, TAGAM NA KAAYO KOS PAGKAON SA BANAUE. 

Food prices in Banaue gave me a total shooookt of my life and pretty much I know that the prices in Sagada won't get any better. I packed up all those canned goods. Although, I hate to eat canned food...I pretty much didn't have any choice and it was one of the best decisions in my life evahh. 



Anyhoo, we took a van to Sagada. The van terminal is just in the bus stop of Banaue


Met two amazing friends. Donn and Bryan who were solo travellers too. We decided to just go all together.


Where to stay in Sagada? 

There are so many hostels around Sagada but the most strategically located is the


SAGADA GUESTHOUSE


One downside is that there are no outlets inside the room (just in the hallway). 
Beside it too is the Coda Lines Ticketing Outlet. It's actually across the bus station; very much in the center of the town.

Activities to do in Sagada, 

Going solo in Sagada to do activities isn't advisable (imho) because most activities/spots require entrance fee/tour guide/shuttle fee. 

We pretty much had to pay for everything. Lucky enough we got in a group. 
So, alright.. Just across the hostel too is the hall where you can book all the activities that you want to do. P.S. THERE'S AN ATM MACHINE INSIDE. 
First, pay for the environmental fee (P35). I thought I could get away with it but no, they require you to show it in every entrance of an anctivity/place. 



HERE'S A LIST OF SOME OF THE TOURIST ATTRACTIONS AND ACTIVITIES IN SAGADA.
GUIDES & TRANSPORT FEES
ECHO VALLEY & HANGING COFFINS P200/$4
SUMAGUING CAVE/SHORT COURSE CAVING P500/$10 (1-4 PEOPLE)
P600/$10.50 (6 VISITORS)
P1000/$20 (6-9 VISITORS); 2 GUIDES
P125/PERSON IF 13 OR MORE
OPTIONAL: TRANSPO P350 - TWO WAY
GRASSY LAND/MARLBORO  P600/$12
SHUTTLE FEE P650/$12.50
LANGSAYAN DANUM TRAVERSE P1000/$20 (1-3VISITORS
ROCK CLIMBING  P800/$16) (1 VISITOR)
P400/$4 EACH FOR 2 OR MORE 
MT. AMPACAO TRAVERSE P1200/ $24 (1-10 PEOPLE) 
BOKONG  P200/$4 1-10 VISITORS
TRANSPO  P250- TWO WAY




If you're on a budget better make plans with other people too.  


Check out what happened in Sagada :)










The much raved Lemon Pie. I love Pie especially Buko, Chicken and Egg. I haven't tried Lemon and well... the Lemon Pie tasted like Lemon ;) Haha it was P30-P40 per slice. 



inside the Lemon Pie House


















Hanging Coffins 

Our tour guide gave us an in depth background about the hanging coffins. 


yours truly




then we spent the night drinking with a whole lot of great conversations

spot the canned good over there? haha 


The next day, we went to Mt. Kiltepan for the Kiltepan Sunrise (no hangover! haha jk)
Where That Thing Called Tadhana's  (Filipino movie)  iconic moment was shot
credits from: thepoortraveller.net

The van picked us up at around 4 am and was about half an hour drive


food stalls 

P30-for a coffee?





Then we headed to Sumaguing Cave






tripadvisorpic




We survived Sumaguing Cave!


It was my first time to be in a cave and I swear amazing is an understatement. (I should check out more caves yknow haha). It was tough even if it was the shortest course and probably the easiest. I experienced rappeling okay!?! Hahaha t'was the best. I suggest anyone to visit one of the caves in Sagada, there's more to it actually. Try it out :) but always be cautious inside! Always be cautious and careful. It could be really slippery so always be mindful of your steps.


Bontok Falls



After Bontok, we had lunch at Yoghurt House. 


about P250 x it was good but I was feeling sick by the time we had lunch so I wasnt able to finish it

inside yoghurt house







We left Sagada around 2pm. I didn't want to leave.  It was a short stay but it was more than enough. I can say that I have made many good memories in Sagada. Who'd have though such spontaneous unplanned trip would turn out so good and special? :) 


Let me end this post with this :




Until my next adventure
xoxo,
Tanya


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