Category Archives: Fairview Apt.

Life Can Be Simple

Life is what you intend it to be–simple or simply complicated–the choice is yours to make, the power only you have. Do I really believe this? Maybe. I just have to look at some of my favorite pictures, mostly during the contruction phase of Fairview. I’m so grateful to these hardworking simple folks that had touched our lives as we begin our journey back to the Philippines.

break time

One time I went up to the 3rd floor, I found these bunch of rubber slippers and I knew the workers were getting ready for their coffee break. I just had to ran back downtairs to get my camera. The image was so compelling…an artistic representation of hard-working folks finding a temporary peacefulness in one room they can call their own, just for now.

tea time

 As I look inside, my heart skipped a bit–a perfect still-life picture–waiting for everyone to be ready for coffee break.

 grp tea time

This is one of the 3rd floor units that the workers were using as their temporary home away from home if they decide to stay overnight. A few would stay for a week to save transportation money.

Life in a Crowded City

Why would someone choose to live in a crowded city? Family. A very simple and indesputable answer. Last December I came across Goyo’s blog about his [ ] and I enviously followed him on his travel from Dumaguete, Negros Oriental to Cebu where ‘he and Mrs. Goyo plans to retire with her family in the near future’. His blog is full of enticing pictures poignantly chronicled from the eyes of a foreigner with the local’s heart.

And here I am retiring [soon?] in the midst of noise and pollution. But, first–I am a daughter, a sister, and many more to the people around me. Luckily my husband loves them too. So it is where we should start for now…our humble beginning could not compete with hotels. Our 4 walls can only block the noise so much that, if you’re a light sleeper, the sound of the 24-hour tricycle will be your nightmare; and before you can lull yourself to sleep, the penetrating sound of the peddler’s voice will surely awaken you to greet the morning sun. Then it’s time to start a new day!

alley st.frnt clbhse1frnt clbhse3fnt clbhse2

            hi dogsclbhse gtclbhse gt2

This is the Filipino life in motion! It’s not for the faint-hearted or the half-hearted (?)…and, if you have visited Goyo’s blog and read Rain Girl, we have more-of-a-kind here in Metro Manila…even Window Boy!

The Unfurnished Side of Fairview Apartment

Imagine starting life at Fairview without the furnishings…still entering the same gate at the alley side, going up the same staircase, only this time you’ll be making another flight of stairs. Yup! It’s the 3rd floor hallway where the other 3 Units are located: (Same layout as the furnished ones, just different colors.)

 3rd flr hallwaybedroombuilt-in closetGrn U fan

      bg2 U kitchenbge UKblue UK

I might as well include one Unit intended for dorm rooms, or maybe…just maybe, one of these days I should consider opening this area to backpackers. There are 3 similar-size small rooms that can be shared by 4 or just 1 in a room but the kitchen and bathroom will be shared by all dormers.

dorm rooms/hallwaydrm desk4-bed dormdorm-2beds.jpg

dorm kitchendorm bathroom


That doesn’t look right? The Caps Lock again–the culprit. Earlier I was screaming in desperation why my email password is not letting me in. It couldn’t be. It’s my primary account; I use it everyday–almost! I can’t believe my unlucky star today. This morning at work I was locked out of my account after typing 3 password combinations unsuccessfully. Why do they have to make us change our password every now and then? As if it was not bad enough to have one in every place. I know I should have written it somewhere right away. Sure…grey matter fades and it’s getting lighter and lighter from day-to-day. That I should remember!

Then I heard my husband yelled back from the other room, “Is your Caps Lock on?” Nevermind! Some ghost must have accidentally hit it…not me! I guess it’s not just the password stuff that makes life sucks. Worse are the people who believe that to con others is an art. Just because it worked at some point with others, doesn’t mean that it will continue to work. Besides, it’s bad for your conscience. That’s true…if you have one.

Actually, discovering that I worked my tail off this weekend for a scammer didn’t get to me at all. Thanks…at least I started some groundwork though I must admit that teeny weeny bit of sigh–it wasn’t real after all. It was a short-lived surge of hope that there really was an interested prospective tenant. A tenant that is ready to pay the full 6-month rent! Omigosh…but wait…did he say ‘send back part of the money through Western Union’? Coincidence? Benefit of the doubt? What else? Enough…I got it! Somebody pulled this similar trick on my husband with the ‘I have a client who wants a drum you’re selling but send me back the rest of the money through Western Union’ thing. At that time the TV stations did not catch on it yet, but it didn’t sound right. Always good to ere on the side of caution…when unsure, simply visit your friendly police precinct. While I’m at this, let’s give my husband a drum roll–visit his drum collections at and you might just enjoy it, too.

Well, anyway I have the 4 parts of that email ready, so I’ll continue with the 2nd installment of our apartment pictures. It’s the inside part of the funished (air-con) model. All 6 one-bedroom units have the same layout, just different colors.

   alley side gatestairs2nd flr hallwayUnit door

           insidehallway.jpgbilt-in closetfurnished bed roomorange living room 

orange kitchen-DRorange U bathroomcooking arealaundry area

A Test of Patience

Friday was not just another day…it was a day with Craig! Actually more of an evening with Craig, and into the wee hours of the morning. It was not just posting but more of visiting the other ads. Somehow it got interesting to travel from place to place and vicariously visiting different houses, condos, and apartments. When I finally got down to what I really needed to do, it was almost midnight.

The irritating part was discovering what to do (or not to do) for the first time–no matter how simple it could be–doing it over and over and then gone forever when you hit the back arrow and, duh! There’s the edit button! Just as you thought you were done…aha, the FAQ…you read something that says “you can manage your postings better  if you create an account.” Who doesn’t want to make things easier? 

So, time to fill out the info, but ‘lo and behold’ what’s the password for my gmail account? It’s been a few months since I started this blog…oooppps, none of my combinations worked. Time to hit that “Forgot your password” since I couldn’t find my printed info anyway. Secret question? Why is my answer wrong? How could I forget my first teacher’s name? I give up. But there’s that little voice that says check your primary email first. Unbelievably lucky…they sent the password reset. Ha, Ha…Back to the grind and I tried redoing my add from my newly created account. Posting time…how come? Sorry! I can’t post a similar ad? But where’s that first one? I guess I just have to charge it to life’s learning experience.  Back to FAQ…’it takes about 15 min’ before I could see my posting. Let there be hope! My waiting paid off. I’ve seen my first posting…and I did not call out for my husband’s help. He was already sound asleep; he was tired too.

Here’s the best part. Saturday morning–5 hours later from that wee hours before I hit La La Land–an email, invitation for another free posting. Free is good! Then Sunday morning…another email enquiring about the ad, from a father for her daughter. Sounds good to me. I emailed him the info and the pictures in 4 parts.

The first installment included the picture of the building as seen in my previous posts and the view of the area/neighbors from the rooftop.


Craig’s List – a flcker of hope!

Time is of the essence…is it? And, therefore, must not be wasted. Yesterday I was trying to assemble pictures to send to a prospective renter, and I thought I might as well check out Craig’s List…posting it there might have some exposure I so needed. Having prepared the draft, I thought this page could just be as good as any parking space. Better than my PC hard drive. Who knows when I’ll make it to Craig’s List? Will I even make it to Flcker? Maybe I should work harder and earn my keep!

hallwayinside hallwayBR built-in closetFrn BR

           dining arealiving roomfurnished kitchen

From the kitchen, you will see the bathroom door next to it, then another door to the cooking and laundry area.

     orange toiletcooking arealaundry area

Here’s my draft:

Fully Furnished 1-bedroom unit apartment in Fairview, Quezon City. Weekly, monthly or yearly lease rental terms available now. One block to subdivision main gate and right across from the club house. Near supermarket, schools and easy access to transportation going anywhere in Metro Manila, a mere 5-15 min. from SM Fairview, FEU Hospital/School of Nursing & Medicine, NCBA, also close by UP & Ateneo.

Weekly Rates: (Air-con Rm.) PhP 10,000 inclusive of utilities. One week stay minimum. Security deposit of Php 5,000 required but refundable upon check out ( P2,000 / day in excess of one week). Full payment upon occupancy.

*Fan rm. only available for half the price, same security deposit/terms.

Monthly Rates: (Air-con Rm.) PhP 35,000 inclusive of utilities with PhP2,000 / day in excess of one month. Security deposit of Php 15,000 required. (2-5 mos. stay, security deposit of 1 mo.required but refundable / 1 mo. advance) Required payment in full upon occupancy.

*Fan rm. only available for PhP 20,000 inclusive of utilities with P1,000 / day in excess of one month. Security deposit of Php 10,000 required. (2-5 mos. stay, same terms as above)

Long Term: 6 months minimum. (Air-con Rm.) PhP 25,000 exclusive of utilities with two months security deposit plus one month advance payment required. Refund of deposit according to terms and conditions of lease agreement.

*Fan rm. only available for PhP 20,000 exclusive of utilities with PhP1,000 / day in excess of one month. Security deposit /advance – same terms as above.


For long term stay, option to stay on the 3rd flr is available for PhP 5,000 less on both Fan and Air-con rooms. Contact us for unfurnished and semi-furnished units.

Rates and Terms negotiable according to preferred options. Rates may depend on furnishings and the availabilities of utilities (tel, cable, dsl).

*note: Partial deposit required to secure reservation of the unit, and balance payable upon
check-in. Serious inquiries only. Deal direct with owner.


Built-in closet in bedroom
One Full/Queen size bed  (2 single beds must be requested)

Two portable mattresses may be provided upon approval
4-seater dining set with dinner wares, basic cookwares
Refrigerator & 2-burner stove

Living room set plus coffee table
TV with remote control, Cable TV

Computer/Internet connection possible, arrange for time and availability
*Air Con (in bedroom)// 2 ceiling fans (standard in every bedroom & living room)

Hot/Cold shower


For more information, specifications and reservations pls. do not hesitate to contact us:

Tel. #: U.S.- (714) 284-0877 [Cecilia] // Philippines- (02) 461-6917 [Elena]

Thank G** for Little Mercies

 From the moment I open my eyes each day, I give thanks for the little mercies I will find along the way. Today, I received an email of my touched-up place. It was painted when the contractor finished with it, but there were other new ideas that would  come up every now and then. I thought it was 90% finished 2 years ago; however, every summer that we visit the Philippines there were always some costly light-bulb moments. It seems 90% is a magic number for years to come.  


With all anticipation and excitement, I thought July 2007 will be a magic summer. Our new place will be ready to welcome renters…not to mention our first summer to really live in what we will call our retirement home, my husband claims ‘temporarily’- but anyway our home for now. When we got there, I thought it was time to advertise. Then, I will be meeting our renters personally while I finish my kitchen and very own bathroom downstairs. Not too fast!

Things don’t work that easily here…remember? This is the Philippines…not California. You don’t just hop in your car, go to work, and do errands in 4 different places before you go home. Besides, this is vacation time! Time you spend with family.




We left the Philippines with our building still 90% finished…again. The first floor is designed to be our own hide-away space, still no master’s bathroom and kitchen—again relegated to next summer. My sister will continue to work on the rooftop, until I really run out of money. And it’s coming very fast. More reason I should learn the ways of the internet.

Neither a Hostel nor a Hotel!

As I mentioned earlier, my place is unique. It’s not a regular house, not even like most of the townhouses around the village. It’s not an apartment building, either; some might have mistakenly thought of it as an apartelle. Still, others wondered if it’s a school since it resembles the school a block away. Not a bad idea. Although the original plan was to have an apartment, I could always convert it to a school of some sort. Just like me…always wanting the best of both worlds.


Goodness gracious! It’s a retirement place…OK, temporarily. Soon, we will be old, and I particularly wouldn’t want to navigate narrow flights of stairs that would be hard on my knees. One unit for us wouldn’t work. My husband wants his gym and music room, and the rest is mine to worry. That’s when I realized I’d better come up with a creative plan.


Creative, indeed! I have the first floor for my husband’s needs; after all, I have the rest of the floors at my own discretion. I thought of five 2-bedroom units that will rise on the 2nd and 3rd floors above us. The building had to be self-sufficient, with enough income to cover maintenance and sustenance of a senile couple – with huge extended Filipino family. Simple! Wrong, again!



From the outside, it looks like a commercial building, not a residential apartment. Problem #1—permits would be different, and fees a lot higher. Problem #2—neighbors complained: our 3-storey building dwarfed their allowed 3-storey homes/townhomes. And this is only the beginning. After three years of slow construction, even with the unexpected changes and challenges, I am grateful for the opportunity of having a place I could call home. Life is good despite all trials and tribulations as most wise men (esp. women) would say.


Having furnished the 2nd floor 1-bedroom units, I now have choices of 3 dorm rooms, 3 unfurnished units, and 3 furnished ones. Why sink in more money to have furnished units? In my moment of madness, I figured I can have long-term or short-term leases. My sister has reservations having foreigners on weekly basis. It’s a lot of responsibility for her – trail-blazing unknown territories…something new, though I suspect it would give her more headaches to polish her English than to keep the stairs polished.


I have to market my idea…fast; the internet seems to be the logical place to start. So, I thought. I could be wrong again. But it’s the one within my reach at this point. I’ve heard ‘let’s blog’ before; never struck a chord in me. Now, I must have been really desperate to start stalking bloggers. Somehow…my initial concept of ‘blog’ was very negative. I had visions of teen-agers wiling their time away and finding uncanny personalities to say the least. When I heard the blog site WordPress as a possible place to create some sort of a website, I decided to have a fresh look at blogging. What have I got to lose? I need to post pictures and information about our place. We need to work towards early retirement…enough motivation, I suppose. I’ve finally mustered some courage to get this in print!