Posted by: neblinoso | October 19, 2009


IMG_3774After an early morning outdoor jog with Rico and Lloyd, i took a trip with some colleagues to MOA, otherwise known as the Mall of Asia, the largest mall in asia.  We didn’t do any shopping, but were led around by Teo, who took us to some of the mall highlights.   

Our first stop was the indoor skating rink.  We rode the escalators to the second floor and after walking a bit, it was easy to spot the rink’s location by the rising, two-story picture of large, snowy mountains painted on one wall.  I walked to the edge, looking down at the deserted rink.  No one was skating, as the Zamboni man was making loops around the ice to smooth out the lines and crevices made by the ice skaters.

IMG_3778Once we had taken photos we headed back down the escalator to an exhibit of ornately dressed, virgin mary-like statues.  They wore elaborate gowns fixed with pins and jewels.  Frankly, i thought they were a little creepy.  Every so often i looked up at one and watched it looking down at me, but it was not comforting.  It was freaky.  I was moved by the pieta, a life-sized replica of Jesus, blood spilling from his wounds, cradled in the arms of Mary.  I don’t like seeing anguish.  I couldn’t even take a picture.  It just seemed wrong, like paparazzi trying to get a picture of some latest scandal.

 We lunched outside at Gerry’s Grill, located on the outskirts of the mall near the bay.  A variety of food was ordered and we all shared.  IMG_3792We had muscles as an appetizer, something i’ve never had.  It tasted much better than i was imagining, since it fell in that fishy, chewy category of which i’m not so fond.  We also feasted on squid, vegetable rice, chicken, clam soup, sisig (a dish made of pig snout, or some other non-traditional pig part), vegetables, and beef in a peanut sauce.  The squid was good, though a little chewy, but it really had no discerning flavor. 

Following lunch, we left MOA and had a short ride to the Greenhill’s shopping center.  I have heard about this place many times since arriving, but had yet to indulge in this bartering-friendly shopping experience.  It reminded me a lot of a place i went to in China with my sister.  IMG_3798A huge warehouse, with rows upon rows of stalls, selling everything from jewelry to electronics, to furniture, to shoes, to souvenir items.  All for cheap prices, too!  We navigated down each path, squeezing through the crowds, as those attending each stall greeted you with “hello ma’am, bracelets,” or “hello ma’am, shoes,” whatever it was they were selling. 

Rico bargained on behalf of me for all of my purchases and i was able to get a head start on some christmas shopping.  I was very excited about finding a warm-up jacket, in the local colors, that had “philippines” on it.  After some close examination i also noticed there was a volleyball stitched on the back.  What luck!  This was the first souvenir i bought for myself. 

We waited while some of the ladies haggled for good prices on the pearls and then snaked our way back to the entrance where we loaded up the van with our purchases and returned to the hotel.  With the jogging in the morning and the walking we did throughout the day, i have a feeling my legs are going to be sore by morning.  It’s okay, though, cuz i’ll be spending most of my work day sitting in a training room, so they’ll have a chance to rest.


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