Perming at Tony & Jackey Salon.

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Today, I got my hair permed just in time for the new year. Of course, we all have to look our best as we greet 2014 (even if 2014 is a bad year for me according to Feng Shui). After 4 hours in the salon and saying goodbye to PhP3500, I walked out of the salon feeling pretty as ever.

For years, Tony and Jackey Tomas Morato has been my go-to salon. I get a haircut once to twice a year since my hair grows at a snail’s pace. I have also permed my hair there at least 3 times before. My previous stylists have long been moved to another branch or moved back to Korea, but I am still a fan of their services.

My stylist for this time is Mr. Vince. He assessed my hair to be dry and chopped off the previously permed areas. He also tried to convince me to get a Keratase hair treatment prior to having my hair permed, but I couldn’t find it in me to part ways with another Php3000 more. That’s just way too much for the sake of vanity. Continue reading

Holiday Gadget Fun: Freebie Downloads and More.

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The tech world has been all abuzz lately with Apple’s 12 Days of Christmas freebies on the iPad and Steam’s free Left 4 Dead 2 download. Sony did not disappoint with new free releases for PlayStation Plus members. My gadgets have been blazing, drained of juice everyday.

What took my attention quite literally was Clash of Clans. Before this week, I had no idea what this game was all about. And now, I’m at Bronze Level II, trying to defend my land, upgrade my troops, and pillage poor villages. It’s quite addicting especially with the 1 Gem boost offer in-game. It speeds everything up pretty quickly: leveling up, making money and training troops. If the people behind this game wants players to get hooked during the holidays, then yes, they did that quite well indeed. Continue reading

Merry Christmas to All!

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Just an hour away from Christmas… and I’m giddy! Christmas is something special for me. It doesn’t mean opening presents and huge Christmas trees, but beautiful lights, making family memories and the occasional fireworks. I love Christmas for those reasons alone. I’m not deeply religious, so what.

We celebrate Christmas a bit differently in our family. Most Filipino families have huge feasts that continue on to midnight, while us, the Kim family, usually just have home-made shabu shabu at regular dinner times. What differentiates it from normal meals is the presence of colorful lights and flowing red wine.

I just came from one of these family dinners. This time, it was celebrated at my great uncle’s house. I got to meet a several of my paternal relatives. Let me tell you… this rarely happens; but when it does, it proves to be a fun experience for all. Tonight was no exception.

I would like to greet anyone who stumbles across this totally random blog post a very Merry Christmas! I do hope you enjoy your holidays with your families. Better make memories while you still can. Enjoy!

iPad Mini with Retina Display: Is it a worthy upgrade for medical students?

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I have been fiddling with my iPad Mini Retina for a week now, and I must say that the screen has blown me away. Looking back on my first experience with an iPad years ago (first-generation iPad I won in a Christmas raffle), I have never been impressed with it and its successors until now. The first iPad was full of problems, and its reliance on iTunes was certainly frustrating. The next iterations were just faster versions of the same fat kid we all would like to pick on in kindergarten. When the iPad Mini came along, I almost wanted to buy it, except that it ran slow compared to the big brothers. The screen wasn’t bad, but it could be better. After selling my first iPad just a few months after I won it, I have kept away from Apple tablets.

I had the Samsung 7.7 International Version with 3G, which kept me quite happy for more than a year. Then I got a Samsung Note II, which was big enough to function as a tablet, so I gave my old tablet to my dad, to his delight. The Samsung Note II has been my go-to gadget for the entire 2013. Looking up recipes, definitions, and drug references was so easy. Youtube videos were quick to load. Apps that were once Apple-only have caught up with Android that I quickly filled up the 64GB microSD card. I didn’t have much to complain about until it finally got buggy and slow due to the quirks of TouchWiz. I also had a China tablet that was so slow and tedious to operate that I was itching to throw it away. It’s time for an upgrade… And yes, a few days after its release, I got a Wi-Fi only iPad Mini with Retina Display edition.

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Hiatus. Over.

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After a long break from blogging, partly due to my internship obligation in Thailand and Singapore, but mostly due to a flurry of traveling, I am back just in time for the holidays! So what happened to me for the past few months?

The entire August was spent in Thailand, discovering Dermatology, finding it to be my calling, getting to know people from all over the world, and visiting places outside of Bangkok like Chiang Mai and Hua Hin.

September and October were spent in Singapore, basically wallowing in despair over the ennui I felt compared to the sheer bliss in Thailand. Needless to say, I shopped. A lot. You know, just to compensate. I learned how to apply make up, bought a new (and expensive) bottle of YSL perfume, swam in branded clothes, acquired a gadget or two, and drank 3 liters of beer every night to make myself feel better. Oh yeah, all that happened while I was an intern under Singapore General Hospital’s Department of Plastic Surgery.

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The Life of a Chubby Girl.

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There are certain things in life you wish you could change: your face, your eyes, your legs. For me, it was always how BIG I am. For an Asian, I am considered the opposite of petite, and it has kept be obsessed since I started getting conscious about my body. Adolescence was not a period in my life I wish to remember. The envy you feel when someone walks past you, so sexy, so curvy. I have big fat arms with a upper extremities too big for my lower extremities. In short, I was chubby.

My friends have always been supportive. They know what to say to make me feel better about my weight. Surrounded with size 2 pretty Filipino-Chinese girlfriends and equally fit boys, I was always the odd one. As little boys were prone to do, they gave my life hell: made me feel fatter, more ashamed of myself. As we hit 20s, these boys turned out to be the most important friends in my life. Sure, sometimes I’d like to hit them for saying mean things to me when we were growing up… but forgiveness eventually won.

Most days, it is me who give myself a hard time. It is me who tell myself I’m fat. It is me who convince my head to start binge eating and throwing up. It is also me who torture myself with 4 hours in the gym every day. I was my own worst enemy, and I couldn’t help it. The low self-esteem took its toll when I finally became bulimic and everyone started worrying how thin I was. Of course, when I started to recover and be myself, my eating habits returned and I gained weight. Continue reading

Actually, I’m Alive!

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So it’s been a month since I last updated my blog. From Thailand, now I’m in Singapore. I’ve gotten several clothes, gadgets and random knick-knacks that I soooo want to review. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the time when I was in Thailand. Singapore proves to be a more easy-going internship for me. The foreign friends are also not that much fun. So let’s see. Maybe a PS Vita review after this useless post? I miss everyone back home. I miss driving. I miss working in my hospital. But… I’m happy. I met someone special, and I’m content.

Exploring Siam on a Sunday

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It’s my first day alone here in Bangkok, and already my feet were itching to take me somewhere to explore. For someone who has been a Siam fan, I rarely venture out of Siam Paragon. In fact, I never stepped foot in Siam Square. After leaving my Mom at Phaya Thai Station (Interconnected with the Airport Express), I dropped by Siam on my way home.

First stop, BTS National Stadium to walk to MBK Mall. It is not my first time in this mall, but it never fails to look like Greenhills, a prominent mall in the Philippines. Its 4th and 5th floors are filled with shops selling cameras, cellphones, tablets (even fake ones), and random accessories for your gadget lust. I do not advise shoppers to stop by here during Sundays though, since most of the shops are closed and those that do open, open by around 12nn. After walking around the mall, thinking of buying a camera, I walked off the temptation and headed to Siam Square, just in front of it.

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Yummy tea for 60B at Teaholic, SIam Square.

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Animal Ambulance? Never knew such things existed!

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First Day High

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If you think flagging down a public jeepney-style tuktuk is hard, then I challenge you to try to hold on to one for at least 10 minutes. It’s like a crazy Texan-style bull ride, except with noisy traffic, a sweaty thigh pressed against yours, random city smells and the possibility of breaking your neck by falling backwards into the pavement and getting smashed by the passing bus.

With all these things in my mind, and the reality of not knowing where to ask the tuktuk driver to stop, I, Precious Kim, neglected to pay the tuktuk driver 6THB after going down. I was glad that I stopped on the right place. But after realizing 2 hours later that I escaped payment, shame washed over me… and the very deep fear of karma erupted. But hey, I might see the same driver again. I’ll just pay him double.

Upon reaching the confusing grounds of Siriraj Hospital and talking to a security guard who pretended to know English, I found myself lost within the campus. The University Map I printed did not help at all. 15 minutes later, I chanced upon a medical student who kindly pointed me the way to my destiny: the Old OPD Building. This building turned out to be the most dilapidated building I’ve seen since stepping foot in the campus.

First day... and I got lost inside the campus!

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3.. 2.. 1.

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And the countdown begins! Tomorrow I shall be flying out to Thailand to have an elective rotation under Siriraj Hospital’s Department of Dermatology for a month. I’m so excited! And then I’ll be heading to Singapore General Hospital for Aesthetic Surgery for another month. I’m happy as a horse. I swear.

Another adventure begins in my life. I hope my condition won’t screw this up. Let this be something I’ll always remember as a positive memory. Wish me luck!