Origins of Wing-Ju-Bo (Part 2)

The first city I visited outside of Asia was London in 2013 with my parents. We went to various scenic spots and landmarks such as Big Ben and Westminster Abbey , St. Paul’s Cathedral, and Buckingham Palace, which can all be easily accessed via London’s Hop On Hop Off Bus Tours.

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We also watched various musicals (Top Hat and Billy Elliot) at London’s West End.

London is one of the most wonderful cities in the world. It is clean and orderly. The sidewalks are wide,  the air is fresh. Trees and parks as well as historic and beautiful building are abundant. Indeed, London is one of the most beautiful cities in the world.

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London is home to the greatest fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes, and, not known to may, is the birthplace of football, table tennis, roller skating and, yes, boxing.

Although fist-fighting has been in existence since the ancient times, the term “boxing” was first used in London in 1719. The Marquess of Queensberry rules, the progenitor of modern-day boxing, was also drafted in London in 1867.

Interestingly, and as stated in my previous post, that is, Origins of Wing-Ju-Bo (Part 1), I am incorporating various elements of boxing in the martial art that I am developing which is Wing-Jiu-Bo.  The principal method of attack in wing chun kung fu is the straight punch from a relatively square stance. The punch, which may come from either hand, is fast and requires no loading; thus, it is hard to block and anticipate. A person versed in boxing, however, will provide difficulty to person using wing chun kung fu. The wing chun kung fu straight punch will not be as effective, because the jab of boxing will have more reach as the stance in boxing is not as square. The footwork in boxing also emphasizes mobility and continuous movement, which will usually provide a harder target to person using wing chun kung fu, the stance of which emphasizes economy of motion and stability .

The most important aspect of boxing however is its training method. Boxers spend a lot of energy in throwing punching combinations and evading punches. Various offensive techniques include the jab (a quick and straight punch with the lead hand from the guard position), the cross (a powerful and straight punch from the rear hand), the hook (a powerful circular punch), and the upper cut (a vertical rising punch usually to chin). On the other hand, the defensive techniques in boxing include slipping, and bobbing and weaving, and blocking. These various offensive and defensive techniques require a lot of energy and thus training in boxing also focuses on strength and conditioning, to develop endurance as well as power, quickness, and durability, in addition to preparedness, foresight, and precision.

The Rocky movies, that is, Rocky, Rocky 2, Rocky 3, Rocky 4, Rocky 5, Rocky Balboa, and Creed, especially Rocky and Rocky 3, provide valuable insight to boxing training and boxing in general. The bouts of Mike Tyson, especially his numerous first round knock-outs, shows the immense effectiveness of boxing to neutralize opponents at the quickest possible time.

More importantly, boxing, as a complement to wing chun kung fu, provides the additional tools to fight opponents, especially from out-fighting distance. However, boxing, like wing chun kung fu, is vulnerable to clinch-fighting and ground fighting, which necessitates the incorporation of various judo techniques to form the ultimate fighting system, Wing-Ju-Bo.

Thank you for reading and I hope you like this space!

Origins of Wing-Ju-Bo (Part 1)

The first city I visited abroad is the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of China.

This was in 2008 after I took the bar exams. I again visited Hong Kong, this time, with all my siblings, parents, and family, in 2013. We went to various tourist attractions, such as (in order of preference) Hong Kong Disneyland, The Peak, Avenue of the Stars,  Ocean Park Hong Kong, and Hong Kong Space Museum.

Unlike Ocean Park Hong Kong and Hong Kong Space Museum, which are also tourist attractions primarily for kids, Hong Kong Disneyland  offers various attractions for adults as well, such as musical and acrobatic shows (I watched the Festival of the Lion King for a total of three times [two times in 2008 and again in 2013]), beautiful castles and other structures, lively parades and breathtaking fireworks displays. Indeed, Hong Kong Disneyland is one of the happiest place on earth.

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The Peak is the highest mountain in Hong Kong island and offers spectacular views of he city and its waterfront. The best way to go there is via the funicular railway, the Peak Tram.

Avenue of the Stars, on the other hand, has a special affinity to me because I loved watching kung fu movies as a kid and it pays tribute to the same, especially the actors who played in them, such as martial arts icon, Bruce Lee.

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Not known to many, Bruce Lee, aside from being the founder of jeet kune do, was a practitioner of wing chun kung fu, which is  a martial art I am practicing now, together with boxing and judo.

In fact, I am developing a new martial art, that is, Wing-Ju-Bo, which seeks to combine the best elements of the sweet science of boxing and the oriental martial arts of wing chun kung fu and judo.

Wing chun kung fu is a concept-based Chinese martial art and a form of self-defense specializing in close range combat which originated in 17th Century in Southern China. It is believed to be have been developed by Ng Mui, a Buddhist nun and one of the Five Elders of Shaolin Temple that managed to escape prior to its destruction. Ng Mui’s first student of her yet unnamed fighting style was a beautiful young girl named Yim Wing Chun. Its core principles include attacking and defending the centerline, which is the vertical axis of the body from the head to the groin, since ideal targets for striking are on this or near this line, such as the eyes, nose, throat, solar plexus, stomach, pelvis and groin. Another core principle is economizing motion, time, and energy, by utilizing straight punches, strikes, and finger thrusts (since a straight line is the shortest distance between two points) and simultaneous attacks and defense by attacking with one hand and simultaneously using the other hand to  block and/or redirecting the attacker’s force.

Better understanding of wing chun kung fu can be achieved (in the most enjoyable way) by watching the Ip Man Trilogy wherein Donnie Yen stars as the wing chun kung fu grandmaster Ip Man, who is best known as Bruce Lee’s real life martial arts teacher. Watching the kung fu classics Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son also provides valuable insights to wing chun kung fu.

While wing chun kung fu is a complete self-defense system, it is far from being perfect; thus, necessitating the incorporation of various elements of judo and boxing, which I will be discussing in my other posts.

Thank you for reading and I hope you like this space!

It’s More Fun in Boracay!

Last month, my wife and I went to Boracay and spent five days there to celebrate our sixth wedding anniversary and to attend to a friend’s wedding. It’s my second time there and I can say that it is truly one of the most beautiful islands in the world.

We flew via Cebu Pacific from Manila at 6 a.m. and an hour later we arrived at Caticlan, Aklan. From there, we rode via speedboat to our hotel, Shangri-La’s Boracay Resort and Spa. The speedboat ride care of Shangri-La’s Boracay Resort and Spa was smooth and allowed beautiful sight-seeing.

Upon arriving at our hotel, we had breakfast at Vintana Cafe, a fine-dining restaurant typical of five-star hotels here and abroad. Afterwards, we rested and slept at our spacious and luxurious room. The comfort room was elegant and the balcony was equally spacious. The wifi internet was also very fast.

In the afternoon, we attended my friend’s wedding. The wedding was at a garden in the resort and the reception was at the Punta Bunga Beach.  It was a truly beautiful wedding with acoustic music, fire dancers, good food and over-flowing drinks.

The next day, we had breakfast again at Vintana Cafe. I then went snorkeling while my wife lounged at the Banyungan Beach. There was not much to see underwater, and so I just went swimming instead. Since the Banyungan Beach was exclusive to the guests of Sangri-La’s Boracay Resort and Spa, we almost had the beach to ourselves. We then ate pizza at Alon and lounged at the beach. In the afternoon, we attended an assisted stretching class (a blend of yoga and thai massage), went sailing via Hobie Cat, and attended a tai chi class. Sailing via Hobie Cat was truly a remarkable experience. It was exhilarating, relaxing and scary all at the same time.

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In the evening, we transferred to Nigi Nigi Too Beach Resort, at Station 1. It was definitely not as luxurious as Sangri-La Boracay Resort and Spa and the wifi internet was practically non-existent, but I liked the place more. It had soul.

For dinner, we ate at True Food, a beachfront restaurant which served mostly Indian cuisine. We ate chicken tikala masala, chapati, paneer, among others, and the food was excellent.

The following day, we ate brunch at Nigi Nigi Too Beach Resort. We had a nice view of the beach while we ate. The other guests, mostly Russians, were also in front of us sun-bathing. Food was just ok.

We then went parasailing and helmet diving. These were truly memorable experiences for me and my wife. We flew like birds while parasailing (and suffered motion-sickness because of the strong winds). Afterwards, we walked with fishes while helmet diving. I am not a good swimmer so helmet diving was really an adventure for me.

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After an adventurous and tiring afternoon, we had dinner Mamita’s Grill. Since I conquered a lot fears that afternoon, I decided to add one more, and sang in front of the public for the first time in many years with the band. The grilled liempo we ate for dinner was also one of the best meals during the whole trip.

The following day, we had breakfast at Nigi Nigi Too Beach Resort and ate liempo again. We then went to Station 1 to enjoy the beach. The sand was perfect!!!! It was soft, white, and powdery. It is truly remarkable that a perfect beach like that could be so close to so many establishments. This is probably one of the reasons why Boracay is one of the most islands in the world.

I also did a little bit of paddle boating and then I went swimming with my wife. Paddle boating was not as easy as I thought and I had a hard time staying on the paddle boat. Swimming in Boracay however was a lot of fun. The shore descended very gradually and consistently and the sea was like a big swimming pool with its clear water.

For lunch, we ate at Real Coffee & Tea Cafe. We ate sandwiches, a cookie, and a calamansi muffin. The food was ok but I felt the place was over-hyped and expensive. During the afternoon, we lounged at Station 1 and read books. We then had dinner at Red Coconut  Beach Hotel. Aside from excellent food and drinks, we enjoyed wonderful performances from fire dancers and acoustic singers. This was truly one of best nights as we had fine dining under the stars by the beach with performers to entertain us.

On our last day, we went strolling around the beach and had breakfast and lunch at Nigi Nigi Too Beach Resort and Mamita’s Grill, respectively. We also went back Shangri-La’s Boracay Resort and Spa to play a little of bit of ping pong and to chill, while we wait for our speedboat road back to Caticlan, Aklan.

Indeed, I can truly say that it’s more fun in Boracay!

Thank you for reading and I hope you like this space!

 

 

美麗 New Taipei City

Last May, my wife and son and I had the opportunity to experience the beauty of New Taipei City, also known as Xinbei. While Taipei is modern akin to Tokyo, New Taipei City is scenic akin to Kyoto.

We toured New Taipei City via MyTaiwanTour with Gordon as our tour guide.

First, we saw the Golden Waterfall near the Gold Ecological Park. As explained by our tour guide, the water used to be of beautiful gold color as a result of combination of regular rainfall in the area and the abundance of gold deposited in the river bed. Then, we went to view the Gorilla Mountain and Yin Yang Sea, s strange patch of water said to resemble the symbol of the Chinese principle of Yin and Yang.

Afterwards, we went the old seaside village of Juifen. The village was the inspiration for the setting in Hayao Miyazaki’s animated movie “Spirited Away”. The views of the mountains and the sea and the iconic red lanterns really were really charming. We also had taro balls and various other street food along the Juifen Old Street, although somewhat unique, the food was not really that spectacular.

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We then had lunch at the Skyline Tea House were I ate authentic Taiwanese beef noodles.美味!

We then went to Shifen Waterfall, the widest water fall in Taiwan. The water fall by itself was impressive, but the walk to and from thereto was also a worth while experience because of the surrounding trees and lush greenery and the cute pathways.

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Next, we went old and magical village of Pinxi. There, we watched the old rail line and the beautiful scenery. We also released sky lanterns into the heavens, which was really a wonderful experience especially for my son.

Afterwards, we went to the equally magical  Jing Tong Train Station. Hanging bamboo rolls can be seen all around the pathways, and the surrounding mountains were very scenic as well.

All in all, the tour was truly remarkable and we had a wonderful time.

Thank you for reading and I hope you like this space!

Ni Hao Taipei! What a Wonderful Surpise!

Last month, I celebrated my thirty-sixth birthday at Taipei. We chose Taipei because it was a place my wife and I have never been to before. Going there was also relatively cheap and, most importantly, our son, who is have a hard time learning Mandarin, will have the opportunity to practice and learn there.

On our first day, we arrived at the Taoyuan International Airport in Taoyuan City. We then rode by bus to our hotel, Forward Hotel Taipei, at Taipei City. Very tired from the trip, we settled for a restaurant near our hotel for dinner. The restaurant, Cash City Shabu,was a shabu-shabu restaurant and was our first meal in Taiwan. Nothing spectacular but it was a place where the locals go and it was a nice dining experience.

On our second day, we went to the National Palace Musem after eating breakfast at the hotel. The sweeping upward curves of the roof of the National Palace Museum reminded me a lot of the Forbidden Palace at Beijing. The National Palace Museum also had Imperial guardian lions like the Forbidden Palace.

The Museum was huge and there were a lot of Chinese artifacts. Too bad, we were not able to see the Jadeite Cabbage, which was at the Southern Branch of the National Palace Musem in Taibao City at that time.

We had beef noodle soup for lunch at a nearby Taiwanese food court.

We then went to Mengjia Longhsan Temple. Watching the worshipers there was really an unforgettable experience. Thereafter, we went to Taipei 101, the landmark supertall syscraper.

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Our son who loved elevators had a really great time at the Taipei 101. We went to the Taipei 101 Observatory at the 88th floor, 89th floor, and 91st floors. Having been to the Tokyo Sky Tree two years ago, I was not impressed as much.The tuned mass damper and the display of the red coral statues were however a welcome surprise. In fact, I was more awed at the red coral carvings there than the artworks at the National Palace Museum.

Afterwards we went to the basement of Taipei 101 and had around six different kinds of xiao long bao for dinner at Din Tai Fung. YUMMYYYYYYY!

On our third day, after eating breakfast, we went to mass at the Holy Family Catholic  Church near Daan Forest Park. Afterwards, we went to Taipei Zoo. We have been riding mostly by taxi up to this day and we decided to try the Taipei Metro going to the Taipei Zoo. We were sure glad that we did. Not only was it cheaper, it was also very efficient and comfortable. The zoo had pandas, lions, and chimpanzees. We ate at McDonald’s for lunch and a Japanese restaurant for dinner (the restaurant did not have an English name).

On our fourth day, we went to New Taipei City. The details of this trip will be discussed in another post. Suffice it to say, that this was the highlight of our Taiwan Tour. After the tour, we wen to Alibaba’s Indian Kitchen. One of our best meals during the entire Taiwan trip. Truly delicious!!!!

On our fifth day, we went to Huashan 1914 Creative Park. There, we went to the Upside-Down House. Our son really had a great time there. He also ha a great time at the open spaces in the park. We then went to Eslite Bookstore, one of the largest retail bookstore chains in Taiwan, and had lunch at McDonald’s. Afterwards, we went to Taipei 101 Mall and ate chocolate cake at Agnes B. Cafe.

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We then went to Raohe Street Night Market where we ate cheap and delicious street food such as okonomiyaki, braised pork rice, and shaved ice dessert.

On our last day, we went by bus to the Taoyuan International Airport in Taoyuan City. Surprisingly, one of my best meals during the trip was at the airport at Tokyo Curry. The Katsu Curry was really delicious!

All in all, the trip was very memorable and we had a great time.

Thank you for reading and I hope you like this space!

The Magic of Solaire Resort & Casino

A couple of months ago, my wife and I watched music conductor Gerard Salonga and ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra in the show titled “The Magic of John Williams” at The Theater at Solaire Resort and Casino in Paranaque City.

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We totally enjoyed the show as we listened to wonderful musical scores by American composer John Williams from blockbuster movies such as Star Wars, Harry Potter, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Schindler’s List, Superman, and Jaws. The acoustics of the Theater was excellent and comparable to those in The West End of London.

The performance of the orchestra was superb. My personal favorites were the haunting melodies of Schindler’s List and the themes from Superman and Star Wars.  Music conductor Gerard Salonga at various times provided some comic relief in between performances. All in all, the show was excellent and wonderful!!!

Afterwards, we had fine Italian cuisine for dinner at Finestra. The ambiance there is truly amazing and their complimentary breads are definitely one of the best in the country. Our main courses of Carbonara Cremosa and Risotto were not as impressive, but were delicious nonetheless.

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As an added bonus, we got to view various paintings along the hallway with the Mona Lisa Project.  The Mona Lisa Project is a collection of works which integrates Leonardo da Vinci’s famous icon, The Mona Lisa. It is curated by artist Soler Santos.

This is definitely one of our most memorable evenings in 2015.

Thank you for reading and I hope you like this space!

The Most Beautiful Place in the World

In the past three years, I have been to various places in more than a dozen countries, including global cities such as London, Paris, Rome, and Tokyo. And I can truly say, without a shadow of a doubt, that the most beautiful place for me is Coron in the province of Palawan in the Philippines.

It has pristine white sand beaches, clear lakes and lagoons, and stunning rock formations. Coron is truly breathtakingly beautiful!

Last week, my wife and I spent six days in Coron to celebrate our fifth year wedding anniversary.

On our first day, after landing at the Francisco B. Reyes Airport in Busuanga Island, we immediately went to the hotel and ate lunch and rested. Thereafter, we made a tour of Coron Town, the highlight of which, was a relaxing hot bath at Maquinit Hotpsrings.We also went to Lualhati Park and Coron Harvest (Cashew Factory), and basically rode throughout the town. We ended the night with a scrumptious dinner at Lobster King Resto & Bar where we ate, you guessed it, lobsters.

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On our second day, we went snorkling at Twin Lagoon and Kayangan Lake. The rock formations were truly stunning. The experience was like a scene from a movie. Afterwards, we went back to our hotel, Coron Westown Resort, to attend Bo Sanchez Turly Rich Club Superconference 2015. The message of the seminar is indeed very powerful: How to Enjoy the Lifestyle of a Billionaire (Without Being One Yet). While there were probably no billionaire speakers in the seminar, the speakers, all in all, were very inspiring. We then had dinner at Balinsasayaw Restaurant where we were also treated to a fire dance and live percussion performance.

On our third day, we continued with our seminar. Ronnie Siasoyco’s talk on ASEAN Integration was very informative. Some of the other speakers were also very funny and entertaining. After the seminar, we ate dinner at Coron Westown Resort and we were treated to a wonderful musical performance by Al Linsangan and the other  members of the cultural group, Tribu Calamianen. One of the highlights of the trip!

On our fourth day, we attended the final part of the seminar. Bo Sanchez’s interview of Larry Gamboa was truly inspiring, and was the highlight of the whole conference. After eating lunch at Coron Westown Resort, we went for a hike at Mt. Tapyas and its 724 steps. The view of the sunset at the top was very beautiful. For dinner, we ate chicken barbecue and drank buko juice at Kawayan Grill, and then we had cocktails at Coron Westown Resort while listening to the hotel band.

On our fifth day, we went snorkling in Green Lagoon and CYC Coral Garden. Snorkling at CYC Coral Garden is truly a one of a kind experience! The water was very shallow and the corals were very beautiful.  We also lounged at the white sand beaches of CYC Beach and Sunset Beach, where we ate lunch. Afterwards, we went snorkling again at Kayangan Lake, Coron’s most scenic tourist attraction. We then had shrimps and German Brotzeit for dinner at Winnie’s Restaurant, my favorite meal of the whole trip!

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The following day, we basically relaxed and just packed in the hotel. We had a delicious chorizo for brunch.

Truly, Coron is a very wonderful place, and I will surely come back.

Thank you for reading and I hope you like this space