*taken as part of the 10-day “you” challenge. Day five’s theme is “places”

land·mark /ˈlan(d)ˌmärk/


  1. An object or feature of a landscape or town that enables someone to establish their location.
  2. An event, discovery, or change marking an important stage or turning point in something.
In plain english, it simply means stuff worth remembering. And I’ve got six of them:

1.) Japan – the land of the Rising Sun. Where iron-willed samurais share the stage with big-eyed bishōnen and bishōjo.  Exposing myself first-hand to the nation’s concept of honor (and dishonor) taught me how sometimes the right thing to be done needs to be done regardless of the emotions attached to it. Just ask this little boy.

2.) Singapore – the House that Hard Work Built. No one imagined that a country with little to no natural resources would become a First-World Nation; I couldn’t even after my visit to the Lion City was done. What I could imagine was that a renaissance of this level was not too far off for my own country. There is still hope. Don’t lose heart. 

*on a side note, they make ice cream so good I wanted to go out and kiss the pavement. Just saying.

3.) One summer “AA” camp – Being thrust into a boot camp of sorts after graduation was an iron-sharpens-iron moment I felt I needed before tackling the real world. Waking the campers up at 3am for exercises was a little bit of overkill, in hindsight. Making tons of new friends (brothers and sisters from different mothers) made up for it in a lot of ways.

4.) Inside Mr. BJ’s head – Something I’d like to consider a potential landmark. Being the big brother I never had, I consider Mr. BJ as a doer in life. Coming from a not-too-ideal family, he never let that become an excuse as he graduated college, got a good job and married a wonderful lady, barring a few rough patches(to be honest, who doesn’t have rough patches?). He did all this without the melodrama and fireworks associated to people with colorful past situations, which explains the tendency of most to overlook his depth of character. Scheduling a coffee break to pick his brain has been a long-overdue goal of mine. Now that I’m working, I can actually pay for my coffee.

5.) China – Having last visited there more than a decade ago, I’ll consider this a potential landmark. My return there should give me more than a decade’s worth of brain capacity to absorb the culture and history better. And a decade’s worth of room in my belly to sample genuine, genuine Chinese cuisine.

Yes. A thousand times, yes.

  6.) Downtown – As in the place where my grandparents and parents grew up. Where they learned not to talk to strangers. Where they learned money didn’t grow on trees. And where they learned that everything in  life is 1% inspirational and 99% get-off-your-butt-and-do-it. A potential landmark since the last time my father “toured” me around was as a 7-year-old and despite it being a car ride away, we’re suddenly too busy to do it again. Something I feel I need to do to keep my feet on the ground.

“He who does not know how to look back at where he came from will never get to his destination.”  – Dr. Jose Rizal
Better go pack my bags and schedule my leaves of absence. Which would be nice if I hadany leaves of absences available. Time to eat my frustrations away (which is, coincidentally, the next day’s challenge. Keep posted).

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