Friday, September 30, 2016

MOVIE REVIEW | Pan's Labyrinth

Rating: 9/10
A highly recommended Spanish film, which I would include in my fave list along with: Y Tu Mama Tambien, Amor Es Perros, Lucia, El Crimen Del Padre Amaro, Volatile Tensions.

Pan's Labyrinth is a non-conventional film that deals with a historical portrayal of Spain in 1944, touching on civil unrest and political turmoil in many parts of Spain. In the middle of the story is the make believe world of Ofelia who is trapped into thinking that she can go back to a world where she's a princess.

I particularly liked the movie because it was unpredictable (apart from the fact that, as I told my German colleague- I like any movie that has sex and violence in it). And Pan's Labyrinth is packed with gruesome violence that in many parts of the film, you'll be forced to look away.

But it was really the ending that made the film memorable. Director Guillermo Del Toro surely made the ending something to make the viewers ponder for days, on whether it's a happy or tragic ending. GDT, in my opinion, projects the same technique as Chris Nolan (e.g. Inception, Batman, etc.) 


Thursday, September 22, 2016

CORPORATE | Retaining Millennials At Work... And Why We Are Self Centered

The question- "So are Millennials really self-centered?" Perhaps, is best answered when one recognize the fact that Millennials have been exposed to the uncertainties of life- what with wars, economic instability, crisis, illnesses, etc. Life is just too short, and as they say #YOLO!

Been reading some articles of Cam Marston, a consultant who specializes in multigenerational communications and marketing. He discussed how to keep millennial employees. This is a very timely piece since we have started in our office, what we call "Thursday Themes", which requests everyone to come to work wearing the theme of the day. The best dress wins a price.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

BOOK REVIEW | Book Challenge for September/October

Book Challenge for September/October!
Read three self-help books and see how this will change your life. 

Well, it's going to be a busy season for this blogger (me!) but that shouldn't stop the reading and learning. I'm actually grateful that my job allows me to both write and read, something that diverts my attention and keep me sane. So with that being said, I am putting myself up to the test. Here are the three books that I am resolute to finish by all means:


Rating: 8.5 / 10
Worth the time and money, so you go watch it on the cinema.
There are only a few movies that engage the audience and make them feel like they are part of what's going on. "Sully" is one of those brilliantly crafted works that plays with the audience and make them believe that what is going on can easily happen to them.
Really enjoyed the movie and it was worth watching it over at Imax,, with all the big screen and surrounding sound; one can easily feel that he's really inside that plane. To be honest, I think I was bracing myself half the time because I felt like I was part of the movie- not an audience, but an actual passenger waiting for my eventual demise.

Couldn't help but recall the 9/11 attack when the terror plane strike the Twin Towers and people in the building were sending or calling their loved ones, telling them they are trapped and they might not see them again. In those very moments, we become human; real human wanting to live and in the face of death, nothing is sweeter than surviving in an otherwise imminent plane crash. And that's what makes "Sully" a hopeful and uplifting piece of film.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

BOOK REVIEW | Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
JK Rowling, Jack Thorne & John Tiffany (2016); 320 pages

Not to spoil anything from the book, but suffice to say that one can finish the thick-paged hardbound edition in four hours, non-stop. It's not really difficult to do that, especially when you get hooked to it.

I think the book was well written, and narrative was well crafted. As in the usual JK Rowling style of suspense, the reader is left guessing who could be the potential "cursed child." And that's what kept anybody who's bought the book, reading through the pages.

I also admire the slight inclusion of LGBT play up between the two main characters- Albus and Scorpius. But since the book was intended for younger audience, of course the taboo will never be the main focus. But anyone who's read the book will also have the same impression- that Albus and Scorpius could have ended as more than being best friends. Well, so much for that.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

JOURNAL | Eid Ul Adha Mubarak!

The Eid Al Adha 2016 Holidays have been announced today, which starts from September 11th to 15th. In Oman, this five day holiday is sandwiched by two weekends, which means there are now 9 days of holiday from work. Whoa, 9 days! Yes, you've got that right. It is a complete 9 days of no work in all sectors. Some companies of course will have to plot their people's schedule by that's pretty much the idea. 
"Eid al-Adha (Arabic: عيد الأضحى‎‎ ʿīd al-aḍḥā, [ʕiːd ælˈʔɑdˤħæː], "Festival of the Sacrifice"), also called the "Sacrifice Feast" or "Bakr-Eid", is the second of two Muslim holidays celebrated worldwide each year, and considered the holier of the two. It honors the willingness of Ibrahim (Abraham) to sacrifice his son, as an act of submission to God's command, before God then intervened, through his angel Jibra'il (Gabriel) and informs him that his sacrifice has already been accepted. The meat from the sacrificed animal is preferred to be divided into three parts. The family retains one third of the share; another third is given to relatives, friends and neighbors; and the remaining third is given to the poor and needy."

Saturday, September 3, 2016

TRAVEL | Travel to UAE from Oman

Will be sharing with you guys the new Immigration process on how to travel to UAE (from Oman), making short leisure trips or for those whose visit visas have already expired. You would know by now that Filipinos used to get visas on arrival in UAE, but due to some issues (of which this writer is not clear of), the rules have now changed. European and American passports remain visa upon arrival status.

As of July 2016, Filipinos in Oman who are going to UAE need to secure a visa on arrival through online processing. 

Another method is to request for a visa service from any UAE travel agency. Please note that the plane counters will not allow Filipinos to board without the following:

  • Pre-arranged Visa to UAE 
  • Roundtrip ticket from Oman-UAE-Oman OR Oman-UAE-another country 

It is best to be ready with these documents, otherwise you'll face a very difficult time checking in.

TRAVEL | Oman Traffic Offences from September 2016

The onset of September 2016 has seen the expected traffic rule changes in Oman. With the hope of curbing accidents and loss of lives due to erring motorists, the fines for each traffic violations have now blown up into amounts that not only hurt the pockets of offenders but could also mean loss of jobs. 

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