Sunday 23 December 2007

My Exchange Gift!

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and just when I was about to go to sleep, came in an email
from another member of OTAP and dear good friend Sol who
sent this attachment. So for all you beautiful women
and men out there...PROST!

On the 23rd Day of Christmas...dreaming


Or shall I call it dress rehearsal for the final
eating day on the holy night of christmas.
First, the "saling cat-cat na cake"
which according to my girlfriend Yvonne tasted good
and wanted another huge serving but without raisins and
other dried what will be the next request,
no flour, no sweeteners, no joy?

Then she surprisingly came with a real devilish
tasting chocolate cake this weekend for my hubby
who was celebrating his birthday (just in case you
women would be complaining why I got a huge cake
extra while you brought home only some tasty morsels
from our Friday eat and meet and founding night
of the OTAP (Organization of Truly Attractive Pinays!).

Then I got my attack of advent depression
thinking of puto bumbongs and other treats back home
after simbang gabi (mass held during four am!)
so I decided to get my ancient and unused puto bumbong
maker from our cellar (it refuses to get hot in my electric range...
choosy puto bumbong maker)to remind good friends of their
promised pasalubongs when they return to Alemanya in January.
My manita Marilou refuses to go to Chinatown to get my
hopyas even if she has signed a promissory note of pasalubong
(Mitbringsel), saying...oy hindi! no way!

On the 23rd Day of Christmas, my truly love said to me...
when do you clear up?
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Friday 14 December 2007

On the 14th Day of Christmas

Friday, the 14th of December
no sign of snow
no sign of sun
at least the temperature is getting like a typical December weather
and today no rain!
the cleaning of the balcony can wait
but it is Friday
market day
fish day
Sushi dinner for two
do it yourself slicing and soaking the
fresh tuna and salmon
in soy sauce with three cloves of finely
cut garlic
eaten with japanese rice sprinkled with
all sorts of flaky sea weeds
and accompanied by warm sake
quite a shift from the sweet stuffs which
I have been chewing since the start of December:
Krapfen (which is translated as doughnut!)
Spekulatius, Macaroons and Stollen.
Last night I was finishing off a packet of
Macademia nuts and some pistachio left-overs -
must be those sudden pangs of hunger after
my Heilfasting. Anyway, I won my bet with
Nelly that I could lose some weight before
the conference...the only act of losing I really like...
losing in the scale. So now the bulge can come
back and I can throw my weight around, ahah!
Irog, can you mail our Christmas cards, fetch
water and bring down the garbage, pleeeeeeease!

(Actually, I wanted to change the image for my
blog...but it won't work. The new photo refused
to appear on the main page. Too loaded with blogging
images? SOS! or Help!)

(Another booty from the Weihnachtsmarkt, Churros ala Alemanya!
No, we don't serve them with hot chocolate came the answer
from a woman selling Christmas biscuits when I asked if I could
have hot chocolate to go with the fingergoodies. With what then,
with Gluehwein?)

Tuesday 11 December 2007

On the 11th Day of Christmas...


And just when I was about to tell hubby, how people are just using
the internet to send greetings, he brought up the post
with these two Christmas cards coming from our dear Sarah
and John from Bath and the other one from Monica who now
lives in her new parish in Scotland. The first cards
through the conventional postal system in this
rainy Advent 2007. Somehow, it feels different.
Iba ang pakiramdam!
These are real paper cards with real postage stamps.
Some things are just differently nice
and they should stay like that despite high-speed
Skyping and nocturnal chattings.
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Saturday 8 December 2007

Christmas Wishes per Web

from Maya: Christmas greetings.

2. Dez. (Vor 1 Tag)

Give me a smile
for Christmas
oh, so nostalgic
for beginnings
oh, to forget
the folly
and ragings,
lost the innocence
of our birth,

Give me a smile
this Christmas
the skies
are pale in Paris
the chill
in our wombs,
the waning passions
and worry
our dreams,

Give me a smile,
this Christmas,
forget politics
and commerce,
let our Christmas
remember the birth,
the innocence
the healing, the
unfearful loving,
the scent of myrrh,
and hope lighting
the stars, oh,

Give me a smile
for Christmas..

From Maria Thelma

Saturday 1 December 2007

On the first day of December...Adventscalendar

C is for Chocolate. A chocolate calendar given by our bank. That
sounds soooo rich, our bank. But I was dreaming today like
other millions of Lotto tippers...what shall I do with 38Millions
if I win the jackpot?
My villa in Toscana for Pinays in Alemanya?
Chasing an impossible dream or just getting
addicted to a weekly gambling?

Monday 15 October 2007

Days of Tasting the Future...Anuga


Eating is not merely a material pleasure. Eating well
gives a spectacular joy to life and contributes immensely
to goodwill and happy companionship. It is of great importance
to the morale.
Elsa Schiaparelli

From October 13 to 17, Cologne is hosting the most important
trade fair for the world of food and beverages. See
On these festive days of slurping and drinking in the halls of
Cologne Trade Fair, I am posting my own photos of tempting
fingergoodies which I tasted during a recent sojourn in
Italy which is currently the biggest exhibitor in Anuga.
A day visit costs 48Euro. I wonder if it is worth the price as
I am doing my fasting this week. I should have known better.
I've heard that exhibitors lavish visitors with giveaway samples on
the last day, it can fill a whole shopping cart. But that is only a hearsay.
Will the Philippine Alliance Tuna lavish me with fresh tuna if I
visit their hall on the 17th? Will I get some pieces of dried mangoes and other
temptations from Sta. Ana, Tagaloan Misamis Oriental if I hang around near
their stand and wait for closing time? Will see.
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Friday 5 October 2007

When Trains Won't Go...

Friday morning and came the news that Die Bahn started its strike
from 8 in the morning to last until about 11 but passengers
and travellers should expect more delays.
As a frequent train traveller, this is no news...I mean the
delays and not only minutes but hours of waiting for the next
train to rescue us somewhere in the fields between Germany
and The Netherlands. Photo above shows not about the strike
this morning, though. It was my other encounter with the
delays of the trains somewhere in Mannheim this summer where
hundreds of passengers were stranded for more than two hours
of waiting. More than an hour spent waiting inside the unmoving
ICE and the rest of the time looking for the next connection.
Mine was the train bound for Basel and further to Bella Italia.
Nothing in sight except the cold drinks served by the train
personnel at the station.
Well, not really that dramatic, these train strikes today.
Radio is broadcasting about groups of people who are still
waiting at the train station to get the next train for their
weekend excursion, and calls are coming in from passengers
asking when and how they could reach their destination.
No chaos despite the delays. Or is this only a dry run for the
striking train operators who are asking now for about 10 percent
increase in their salary?
That is my bag being carried by this Gentleman.
Whoever you are, you were an angel sent...not by the bahn.
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The first thing I did when I reached Basel after the long delay
was to go to my favorite cake shop and get myself those
lovely Luxumbuergerlis. Hmmmmm, the best panacea for
the bruised travelling spirit. who cares about the next
train connection?
Calling Bahnchef Mehdorn! Die Bahn should have more of these
fingergoodies and comfort food than just plain coffee and
bottled drinks.

Wednesday 3 October 2007

For my Girlfriend Luzviminda

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She texted me announcing that from today she is officially called
Luzviminda. She has taken back her maiden's name leaving
her acquired name, her former tag of being married, the past
behind, and yes, life is wonderful.
In separating from him, she finds her self whole.

For her,it feels like having spring in this start of golden October.
She celebrates her birthday today, a especial gift to her
I thought, the recovery of her former identity which gives her
the feeling of strength to start a new life.
Reunification in Germany, blissful separation
for my girlfriend.

I greeted her wishing that she may have abundance in
life, luck, health and wealth and wonderful friends
like me!

Saturday 22 September 2007


Ciao! I'm back and remembering the old lines..."I see you in
September, when summer's gone", I`ve thought of breaking my
blogging block and start posting this end of September. But as luck
would have it,summer has returned today in Alemanya. What to do?
Wait further for the first sign of autumn to start updating? No,
I decided to start the update today, September 22.

While taking a walk across a nearby field watching the afterglow
on the horizon and the first stars on this early evening, I told
hubby, "Equinox, it is Equinox today."
As expected, he contradicted saying, "it is actually on the night
of September 21 to 22."
"No, it is September 22 and I don't forget that," I countered.
After we've reached our nest and enjoyed our sips of cold
Federweißer, I consulted Wiki about Equinox.
It says: "An Equinox in Astronomy is the event when the sun
can be observed to be directly above the earth`s equator,
occuring around March 20 and September 22 each year."
Reading further, it reads that Equinox in 2007 is on
September 23 at 9:51.
Well, that is too early sun watching or Equinox
for me. I`d rather have sunny-side-up with toast
and marmalade on Sunday morning.
Which reminded me of this state-of-the-art egg
served in one of those hotels near the river
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Tell you, the eggs taste better without the rings.

Saturday 1 September 2007

Try to Remember

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Try to remember the kind of September
When life was slow and oh, so mellow.
Try to remember the kind of September
When grass was green and grain was yellow.
Try to remember the kind of September
When you were a tender and callow fellow.
Try to remember, and if you remember,
Then follow.

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow, follow.

Try to remember when life was so tender
That no one wept except the willow.
Try to remember when life was so tender
That dreams were kept beside your pillow.
Try to remember when life was so tender
That love was an ember about to billow.
Try to remember, and if you remember,
Then follow.

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow, follow.

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow, follow.

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow, follow.

Deep in December, it's nice to remember,
Although you know the snow will follow.
Deep in December, it's nice to remember,
Without a hurt the heart is hollow.
Deep in December, it's nice to remember,
The fire of September that made us mellow.
Deep in December, our hearts should remember
And follow.

Music: Harvey Schmidt
Lyrics: Tom Jones
Book: Tom Jones
Premiere: Tuesday, May 3, 1960

Sunday 26 August 2007

Italian Sojourn Summer 2007


Ciao! I am back to the German nest after a month sojourn in Bella
Italia. Would be posting some photos taken during my stay in Padova,
short visit to Venice, summer camping with Filipino and Italian kids
in Settefrati and a brief holiday in this Città of ever walking tourists,
varieties of pasta and pizza and hundreds of piazza, in this hill now
known as the Palentine, in this city of Roma.

In between saving my drooping "self-supporting" plants and
sorting out emails which landed as spam mails, I would be spending
many late hours of the last summery days this year posting, reading
and touching base with other "webby" pals and friends who could not be
convinced that there are places in Italy which are so stubbornly against
internet cafes.

Other plan is to do some trimmings of the deposited fats (per carità)
after a month of devouring lovely pastas and Gelato(ice cream)and meriendas
of guinataan and pichi-pichi!

What about you? Vi siete trovati bene? Did you have a beautiful time?
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Wednesday 18 July 2007

Things We Do in Summer: Climb Every Mountain

While I listed some summery tags in Bulongbulongan I am posting
here some of my favorite summer photos. These ones were taken
during a trekking tour in Hochgernhaus in Southern Germany
organized by dear friends Moni and Caro for some multi-cultural
mountain trekking neophytes who would prefer to stay in the
beerhouses down in the valley than enjoy the breathtaking view
after the hard climb.
Plans are on the way for another tour and if you wish to join
us, just email and we could arrange a weekend climb if Moni
is still willing to guide us. Meanwhile, enjoy the digitalized
moments without having to perspire.

And finally, beer and shiatsu for the dear guide

Sunday 15 July 2007

Fatima and Her Love Song

She will wring my neck if she finds out I posted
our experimental mini musical in my blogs but
I've taken a liking in her song...humming it
when I am searching for papers, folders or cds
in what I call "life is found in movements" writing
desk. She explained to me once that the song
means "I can not lie to you." I would like to
propose this song to be one of the campaign songs
of our politicians. Will ask Fatima to give me the
complete lyrics before she finds out I have her
immortalized in my pinay kaleidoscopic blog.
So here's our experimental mini musical
"Fatima and Her Song"

Apropos on lying...we do have songs, romantic pledges
on similar lines, right?
I remember these lines...
"Hindi baleng huwag mo akong mahalin
Huwag mo lang akong tawaging Sinungaling."
(It is not important if you won't love me
but just don't call me a liar.)
In the same vein, one could also sing:
"Hindi na baleng ako ay inyong botohin
Pagsisinungaling ay aking galing."
(It is alright if you give me your vote
My best talent is lying.)

Any song you could share about love and lying?
Puede din yun lying and vote loving.

Dear Fat, please don't get mad
if your friends chance on this experimental solo
performance, just tell them you are trying to do
a bit of political awareness raising through this
love song.

Friday 13 July 2007

Mitbringsel or Pasalubong "Perks and Irks"


Blessed are those who do not expect for they will be
given pleasant surprises. But this time I was expecting
because I gave him an extra travelling bag to use for my
ordered "pasalubong or bilins."
So when the Datu came home from his short lecture
stint in the Philippines including a brief visit
to Jolo (the news I found out through another friend
in Manila)and stay in Hongkong and Macau,I was a bit more hopeful
that he would this time surprise me with my ordered
goodies from Chinese silk shirts to moon cakes.
"If only looks could kill," he said, when I saw this
red plastic bag he was holding when he got out of the ICE
train from Frankfurt airport, and the extra travelling bag
was nowhere to be seen. Not a good omen, I thought saying
goodbye to wishful thinking about silk blouses and moon cakes
and all other "bilins" I wrote in this piece of paper which I
tucked into this extra bag for Mitbringsel or pasalubong which
is a compulsory gift given by the travelling partner
to his/her partner who freely opts or forced to stay domestic
than jet-setting.

Pasalubong, btw (by the way) is not only for those who
are waiting for your return from your journey but these
are the goodies given to the nice people of your destination
for waiting for your visit. In short, they are symbolic
small things saying you have not forgotten these people
and if you are married, related, friend, supportive to someone from
this Wow! 7,107-island Archipelago, then you are in such a big
trouble if you do not know what "Pasalubong" is all about.
Well, the Datu has known his trouble and he seems to be
getting used to it. So don't despair, nothing is really
so serious with us people coming from this Wow! 7,107-island
Archipelago if you do not really care about the implication
of not having any Pasalubong.

But to be fair to the Datu, when he opened the plastic
Travel Value bag and started giving me its contents, I was
all forgiving for his forgetting my ordered moon cakes from
Hongkong. He handed me the following treasures which I either
ordered or sent as Pasalubongs by friends and members of my clan
back in the "Madercountry."
* Filipinas Photographs by Isa Lorenzo from dear Ricarda K.
* A Bag out of recycled tetrapaks from Ricarda K.
* Book "How to Win an Election" given by Klaus P.
* Book "The German Club - A History of the German Community in
the Philippines" given by Thorsten F.
* One small bottle of Taba ng Talangka (crab eggs)
* 3 Pieces of JMGoulbourn linen blouses (each piece costing about order and not pasalubong)
* A plastic SM bag full of Choc Nuts, Adobong Butong Pakwan
(dried watermelon seeds),dried mangoes and pastillas from Lengleng
* Malong from Luz M.
* Tausug table cloth from Zeny S.L.
* Badjao pearl bracelets from Zamboanga (no longer called
City of Flowers but Asia's Latin City)
* A necklace of smoked topaz from China
* Two wooden necklace from my elder sister
* Two hundred pieces of calling cards...thanks Paula G. for ordering them.

If I miss mentioning your pasalubong, please do email me and will
hold the Datu responsible for this oversight. Maraming Salamat!
Grazie Tanto! Vielen Dank!
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Wednesday 11 July 2007

Can you spare a 50 Euro bill please?

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While clearing the aftermath of our tiramisu meet and eat
(will post later on this), I heard from WDR 2 something
about fake Euro bills and the release of one German hostage
in Iraq. There is a circulating speculation on the amount
of ransom paid by the German government regarding the release
but I was amusing myself with the thought that there must
be a correlation between rise in counterfeiting Euro bills
and talks about ransom.
If ransom is involved, who would be more keen on
recognizing fake bills from the genuine ones? The giver?
The receiver? Just an amusing thought early this morning.
But I really checked on my 50 Euro bills (not that I have
them all the time at home like a dutiful, economical but
loving wife and please don't confuse economical with
economic says my dictionary of contemporary English) stashed
away in this Da Vinci Code book and googled some tips
on how to tell fake from my faith in these 50Euro bills.
So if you wish, do check these how to tell tips

and take note this short tip from an economically loving wife:
*Bill should not be slippery but according to
the German word 'griffig' which is translated in English
as handy! Hah! Handy Euro bills! With the bill, of course,
we are talking about the paper money, bank note.It should
not easily slip out of your fingers when you are feeling
the note. (Hallo Tita Sol, I know you are thinking
of something else because you are a flute player!)
*If you are managing a paluwagan then be extra careful in
getting the dues from your banking ala Pinay group or get yourself
a fake bill detector.(The detector should not be fake but should
help you in sorting out your notes.)It should be worth the cost as you
could lend it to other economical wives for them to
check bills handed by the dutiful Breadwinners for their budget.
*And just for about surprising yourself with redux of
"Wanted Penpal" in one or two bills, write your sites, links, whatever
and see who will heed your SOS. BTW, I still say that word, Baduy.
You see, living abroad makes you really economical with trendy Pinay
or Pinoy words despite the mighty web. But check your bills and if
in doubt,give them back to the giver. And if you really are sure
you have fake bills in your piggy banking, I could offer these
a) Try depositing them back to your saving banks. According to one
introduction to this phenomenon of counterfeiting Euro notes,
even some banks employees could not tell the fake from the real
ones. So to whom shall we go?
b) Check local Lotto dealer for fake bills detector. If none, pay
the fake note and if you win, don't forget our developmental
projects for our dear Motherland.
b) Try donating them to a church. It has such a power it could
convince any bank to convert their collection to any amount worthy
of time deposit interest. Maybe local banks or your favorite church
will donate them further to a more powerful institution...
the Vatican Bank. Who knows, it could mean that the cycle has been
completed. Just entertaining amusing thoughts this one summery

Sunday 8 July 2007

Cologne: Christopher Street Day Aloha!

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Homo europaeicus geht aufrecht...
Homo Europaeicus walk upright

The traditional yearly Christopher Street Day
was blessed with sunny, dry and really hot weather
and the news said that there were about 20 thousand
participants to this year political demonstration
of gays and lesbians in Cologne.
I am sharing some photos I took while squeezing
my way through the crowd in Heumarkt. I promised Korkie P.
that I would be posting some photos for her. Enjoy them!

Who Are You? Brad Pitt's Avatar? Why are you on the other side?

Equal Rights for All Brides!

Cool Angel in a Summery Cologne City

Stand By Your Woman!

Saturday 7 July 2007

07.07.07 Live Earth Concert and My Pledge for Mother Earth

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Live Earth Tokyo update reported from the ground:
Twenty year old Japanese pop star Ayaka moved many at Live Earth
Tokyo to tears, telling the captive audience, “We now hear a lot
about global warming. This is really everyone’s business.” Ayaka,
who is known for her smash hit “I Believe,” continued, “There are
many things we can do.I want everybody to take action.” Ayaka, the
third performer on-stage in Tokyo, followed Al Gore’s virtual
appearance at Makuhari Messe.
The Tokyo crowd went wild for pop and hip-hop artist Ai Otsuka.
Between sets, Ai said her participation in Live Earth had encouraged
her “to start with [changing] small things.” Ai said she now brings her
own bag to stores when shopping, turns off lights when she’s not
using them,uses water as little as possible and rides her bicycle as
frequently as she can. “I sometimes think we should turn off
everything around the world for just five minutes,” she said.


After opening the Live Earth concert series in Sydney via live satellite
feed, Al Gore launched Live Earth Tokyo this morning in a high-tech,
virtual way – as a hologram.
After a stirring introduction by Lumi, the virtual-reality singer
of Genki Rockets, a head-to-toe-likeness of the former U.S. Vice
President materialized on stage and shared urgent yet hopeful words
to the crowd gathered at Makuhari Messe. The holographic Gore had
an expression of amazement as he delivered the following words:

What an amazing world we live in – I love it that I can stand here
on this stage in Tokyo and speak to you in holographic form. It is
astounding that in just these recent few decades we have invented
technologies that enable us to connect and instantly communicate our
ideas and intentions with people on the other side of the globe.

Because of the communication channels and technologies now
available to us, this venue is, at this moment, connected to the
entire world. You are all communicating to well over 2 billion people
right now -including all the Live Earth audiences in Sydney, Shanghai,
Johannesburg, Hamburg, London, Rio de Janeiro and New York and
the broadcast audience who will be watching on television and the
Internet in over 100 countries.

The human race is also connected by the climate crisis. It is a
global problem that transcends boundaries, languages and cultures.
The climate crisis will impact everyone, everywhere on Earth.

If we look at the Earth from space, it looks like a blue ball coated
with a very thin layer of lacquer, within which the air, water, and
living beings exist.

This fragile layer is all we have. It’s our only home – and we owe
it to our children and our children’s children to protect it.

With Live Earth, we hope to connect people through the power of
music and engage them with a simple, universal message: SOS. ANSWER
THE CALL. The Live Earth concerts have the potential to inspire a
mass audience to take immediate action and build a global movement
for change. You can launch this movement today by pledging to make
meaningful and lasting changes in your life. There are so many areas
of our lives that contribute to the problem of global warming – and
those are the very things that can we can change today and make part
of the solution.

And you can commit to this pledge at

As you are making these critical changes in your life, be sure to
call on your leaders and elected officials to do the same.

It’s time to begin to heal the planet. Together, we can transform
the way we relate to our environment. Global warming is now the
greatest challenge facing our planet, the greatest we’ve ever faced.
But it’s one problem we can solve – if we come together as one, take
action and drive our neighbors, businesses and governments to act as

This is what Live Earth is all about.

To all assembled here in Tokyo, at the special event in Kyoto, and
around the world: I thank you for being a part of Live Earth.

And I ask you to ANSWER THE CALL!


Live Earth Sydney is now underway. The concert at Aussie Stadium
started with an aboriginal welcome and song & dance performance
followed by a surprise welcome issued via live satellite by Al Gore.

In his welcome address, Gore praised Live Earth Sydney’s lineup and
thanked all in attendance for “being the first to launch this movement
to solve the climate crisis”. Gore then read the Live Earth
Pledge and urged everyone in attendance — and everyone watching
from home — to sign their name to the pledge at or by
sending a text message of LEAD to 199 66 777.
The Live Earth Pledge reads:


To demand that my country join an international treaty within
the next 2 years that cuts global warming pollution by 90% in
developed countries and by more than half worldwide in time for the
next generation to inherit a healthy earth;

To take personal action to help solve the climate crisis by reducing
my own CO2 pollution as much as I can and offsetting the rest to
become “carbon neutral;”

To fight for a moratorium on the construction of any new generating
facility that burns coal without the capacity to safely trap and store
the CO2;

To work for a dramatic increase in the energy efficiency of my
home,workplace, school, place of worship, and means of transportation;

To fight for laws and policies that expand the use of renewable
energy sources and reduce dependence on oil and coal;

To plant new trees and to join with others in preserving and
protecting forests; and,

To buy from businesses and support leaders who share my
commitment to solving the climate crisis and building a sustainable,
just, and prosperous world for the 21st century.

Gore delivered his welcome address from a studio overlooking the
Capitol Building in Washington, DC, where he will be presiding over
Live Earth’s special broadcast event at the Smithsonian’s National
Museum of the American Indian
featuring Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood.

Following Gore’s remarks, Australian radio announcer Robbie
Buck took the stage and introduced the first band to play Live Earth:
the Melbourne-based blues/roots band Blue King Brown

My own pledge:
* I will continue sorting out my basura or better avoid basura at all.
* I will bring always my pair of chopsticks when eating at this sushi
bar and will remind the other sushi aficionadas to bring theirs, too.
* I will remind my Japanese friend not to use so much wrappings for
gifts and not to use too many toothpicks!
* Will stop using strong bulbs...switch on to more candles for ambiente.
* Will never use disposables for picnics, gatherings and meetings.
* Will never stop to make kulits to relatives back home to plant trees, sort out basuras, love their rivers and lakes
and walk than just wait for the next tricycle and ex-communicate people who throw basuras out of cars,buses and jeepneys.

What about you energy saving bloggers?