About almost two years ago, I had go back to the Philippines because my father was ill. It was the first time I reunited with my brother, sister, and my father since I moved to Victoria, BC. The trip was an emergency. However, I took the opportunity to see my friends and relatives at the same time. Redge is one of my best buddies. He is a brother to me. He has been my best friend since high school. Every time I went back to my home land, he would be there waiting for me. For the years we never saw each other, it's like nothing changed. I really hate it when people don't look at you the same way. Fortunately, I have become a member to his family.Anyway, it seemed like each time I visited the country, Redge was sucked into a new hobby. The last time was biking and this time was photography. Since his family is financially well off, he could afford to get the really good stuff. He showed me his new toy and since I was interested about photography I asked him a few questions at which he answered w/ excitement. Fast forward... I returned from my trip and told Jana about starting this hobby. I was surprised to hear that he at some point was into it too. In fact he mentioned that he took some really good photos and made them posters and were hanging in his apartment. I said, that is the idea my friend. You have something that is unique and the great thing about it is that you created it. We both agreed on many things and this one was probably the one that got me to really start doing it.The UrbaChallenge
came to Victoria and there I just got my new DSLR. They were looking for volunteers and I was a bit hesitant -sort of shy- to volunteer taking photos. Jana was there to push and encourage me. He played a big role as to why I ended up taking photos instead of doing something else. At the end of the event, I went up to him and said, "Thanks for doing that, man". "I really wanted you to do it", he replied. "What a good friend", I whispered to myself...Here are the photos...
PN: This is the continuation of Part 3
.I admit, I am not one of those guys who are good with dates. When someone tells me a date of birth you could almost be certain that I would forget the day the next day if I'm lucky -ok, give it an hour instead. It's not that I don't care but maybe I'm not too fond of the feeling of being special - I don't know. I guess that's why my brother and my closest friends got used to calling me an idiot because of flaws like this one.Anyway, one day the four of us exchanged birth days. Obviously, I forgot everyone's especial day right away -except mine. You idiot! However, Jana kept everyone's birthday and made sure he had something for that person on his or her day. He is the kind of person that if you did a favor, he would return that favor twice in some other forms. If you dropped him off the airport, he'd get you something in return right away and he won't take a "NO" for an answer. There was one time he gave me a movie card and I told him, "Hey man. I did that for you in free will. I'm not expecting anything in return". He answered, "The gift is not for you. It's for Cherie". If it wasn't for Cherie, it was for the kids.
I think you get it.Kelly's birthday was coming and her daughters, who became friends as well, were planning a surprise party. All we had to do was to show up in some local bar in Ladysmith.
Jana picked me up during the big night and we hit the road. It's about an hour drive due North. On our way Jana and I talked about our favorite subjects, politics, cars, technology, what ifs, and what not. About an hour later, he pulled over on the address he had written and the parked his truck beside a building which seemed to be a big hall . We could hear some Hawaiian music playing and people cheering from the the nearby door where Jana had parked the vehicle. "This must be it!", I exclaimed while rubbing my palms together with a glee on my face. "It looks like it", Jana answered while we head to the door. As we got in, the room was packed with people and it was unusually dark with only the spotlights lit and aimed at these two gorgeous women belly dancing. Jana and I looked at each other as if we could almost read each others minds
saying "I hope this is it". We were speechless for a brief moment while our eyes were stuck on the stage. Then I finally gained my senses back. I asked one of the guys in the crowd, "Is this Kelly's birthday party"? The guys says, "No", and he mentioned a name of an event that I didn't understand. The "No" was all I needed. I looked at Jana and shook my head and then we stepped out. We looked around the building and noticed a group of people getting out of a place that looked more like a pub. We went in and there we saw familiar faces. By the entrance pictures of Kelly were displayed. She even had this poster size picture taken when she was about 3 wearing some cowboy boot I believe. It was cute. Her daughters definitely pulled it off. A guy was playing the piano while other sang in to the tune. Others were dancing. Jana on the other hand started telling everyone on how we got lost and almost didn't want to leave the other place. Everyone was laughing at us. Finally, we felt like are part of the event.
PN: This is the continuation of Part 2
. Kelly and Susanna are two of the most senior employees at work. They both know the technical aspects of the business inside out. They are my mentors that became good friends. When Jana joined our team, our fellowship became much stronger.Days, weeks, and months have come and gone. Jana had become a really close friend. We would always wait for each other when we go for coffee breaks in the morning or the afternoon. In the morning, Kelly and Susanna would often join us.
Even before getting out of the building Jana would start making his funny comments that kept everyone laughing. At the coffee shop, my girlfriend, I mean my wife Cherie would be sitting by one of the larger tables that she had reserved for us. She'd often wait for us there after dropping off Jeremy and Jacob, our 2 boys, at school in the morning. We would take turns covering the bill for the steeped and honey lemon teas and 1-1-1 and 2-2 coffees. Even at Timmy's, Jana would make conversations with the staff as if he knew everyone there. As we approached our table he would ask Cherie which of the guys she's been checking out at the shop. I in turn would make that Robert De Niro's "I'm watching you." fingers to eyes motion. We'd stay there for about 15 minutes talking just about anything but most of the time, it was about work, or was it?
PN: This is moved from my old site dated Jul 20, 2011.
You might now be wondering about the relevance of Jana to my photography. I'll get into that soon enough and I hope that all my readers would understand why I am giving too much of time and importance to such a tribute.
March came and there was the new guy sitting beside my desk. "Welcome to Maximus", I stated. "Thank you", Jana replied with another handshake and again, with that contagious smile. Colin came by while we were chatting. He asked Jana to walk with him so that he could introduce him to everyone in the office. "Obviously you guys know each other so I'm going to take Jana away from you for a few minutes", Colin jokingly said to me. "He's all yours", I replied cheerfully. I proceeded to my desk and scanned through my tasks for the day...
9am came and my biological system is now ticking for caffeine. I normally would ask Kelly (my long time colleague and coffee gal/buddy) to go with me but now there's a new potential coffee buddy. I educated Jana about our morning ritual and he was hooked right on the spot. He joined us that day which marks the beginning of our daily "Good Morning Maximus" coffee break routine.
Days came and gone and I slowly learned more things about my new found coffee buddy -Sorry Kelly, you are still the original : ). At work, Jana was technically very proficient, very patient, and very professional. He was always eager to learn things no matter how unfriendly the processes are. The few things that really caught my attention though were his friendliness, truthfulness, and most of all was his great sense of humor. I kid you not, he had ways that would make you smile or laugh on a daily basis...
PN: This is moved from my old site dated Jul 20, 2011.
One morning on February 2010, while passing by my boss's office I saw a familiar face. I looked at the guy's face longer while trying to recollect my memories and I finally I stopped walking and said to him, "I know you". He said the same phrase. Our manager at the time, Colin, interjected, "You two know each other? That's great!". "I know him by face from IBM in Markham, Ontario but I never knew his name", I replied. "I'm Jana", the guy answered offering his hand for a handshake. I reached out and shook his hand while saying, "I have to go but give me your number. I'll call you as soon as I become available". Jana gave me his 416 cel number and we parted ways. I understood at that time that he was there for his job interview.
In the afternoon that same day, while trying to complete the task at hand, I thought it was time for a coffee break. I normally check my personal emails on my smart phone while I walk to Timmy's. As I reached for my phone I realized that it might just be a good time to call Jana for a coffee. So I did. He picked up the phone and I asked if he was available for a coffee break. He said he is also in the area so it was perfect. We met up at the shop in Blanshard.
As I turned onto Blanshard from Pandora, I saw Jana standing by the coffee shop's entrance with a big smile on face. "What a small world", I stated. "It really is", he replied. We talked about the city, the company, and the work. In an instant we felt comfort in each other's company. After a few minutes of chatting, it was time to get back to work. Just before we parted ways the second time he asked, "Do you think I'd get the job"? "I'm sure you would and let me know when you are back in town for good", I replied. "For sure", he answered with a smile that seemed to never fade from his face. "What a cool guy", I told myself as I walked back to the office.
This is the continuation of my first blog...
I'm not sure what the rules or etiquette are for good blogging. However, I will try to make mine short but concise so as not to bore my readers. Well, if there are any for that matter. In any event, it probably wouldn't mean much because these are all meant primarily to my most ardent readers - "myselves".
After taking another photo I've felt trickles of rain but it didn't pose any alarm. I scanned the sky once more. To my surprise a rainbow appeared right before my eyes. If you can imagine a 5 year old kid stepping in a candy store, running around not knowing which candies to take, that's how I looked like while looking for a better spot. "This is something that doesn't appear everyday so it has to be taken perfectly.", I told myself almost falling off the ditch. Voila, even I was surprised of how this picture
turned out to be. It's one of my favorites, but the other shots were also great -at least for me. Here's another one
that I thought wouldn't turn out to be as nice because I had to zoom in. Normally you'd lose the quality of the image but I guess the fairly bright light compensated.
There are many other photos I'd like to talk about but I think it's about time to close this blog. This link
will lead you to the rest of the photos. I hope you can enjoy them the way I do, or should I say "we do".
Final thoughts: There's always the sun shining beneath that rain...
PN: This is moved from my old site dated Jul 17, 2011.
This is my very first blog. Not just for my photos but ever...
Our yesterday's planned photo meeting was cancelled. I didn't learn about it until I got home from a tennis game and checking my FB msgs. Anyway, I thought to myself, "What do I do now for the rest of the day?". It looked like it was going to rain anyway so my boys would rather stay home... sure... I took a shower, picked up the camera, and decided to head out anyway despite the unpromising weather condition.
As I stepped out of the building, I felt drizzles of rain. I scanned the sky and I saw that the clouds from northern part of the city was thickening. So then I decided to head south. As I drove further southwards, the rain poured lesser and lesser. I saw some clear sky spots from the Clover Point
and so I decided to head towards that direction. I wasn't disappointed.
The cloud formations surrounding the area were incredible. I parked right by the entrance and started taking some photos. Here's
the very first picture I have taken. To be con'd...
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