Online Shopping Has Never Been This Good

Just months after I arrived in the Middle East and after I received my first month salary, I decided to treat myself with something new. I went to department stores in the city and had my groceries good for a month. I went to different stalls in the mall for new clothes, shoes, accessories e.g. sunglasses, jewelries, watches, etc but my God, it is either out of style or too much pricey. So, I ended up purchasing electronic gadgets. I bought a netbook, yes, a 10-inch netbook, a size which is good for traveling. But still I crave for things to wear. I checked the net and suddenly a page popped up on the screen of one of the SNS/ Social Networking Sites. I checked it and was seduced by the products they were selling. I automatically signed up and created an account with them.

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This is a store located physically in Amman, Jordan with branches in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Customer service and support can be utilised online by contacting them real time and their call centres are also located both in Jordan and UAE.  The prices are lesser compared to prices in the malls since they get the items right from the suppliers. Brands like Lacoste, Dolce and Gabbana, Gianfranco Ferre, Michael Kors, Burberry, Ray Ban, Gucci and many more which are world known brands. Other not so known brands like F5 to Refresh, Dewberry, Fred Perry, Moms, Toms, Ice Boys and many more are also available in this site. Sales goes for a day or a maximum of 10 days. For residents of the GCC/ Gulf Countries, delivery fee is  just for US$5 but there are times that the site is offering free shipping like for example during Ramadan, Eid or Hajj holidays. You also have a choice to make a purchase thru credit card or cash on delivery but with CODs you need to pay additional US$5.  The online shop is partnered with a known courier company in the Middle East called, Aramex.

Oopss, I’ve been talking about this shop for about a minute already but still haven’t named them. The name of the online store is MarkaVIP and online shopping has never been this good with them.

In the Middle East, it is way more convenient to do online shopping since traveling is difficult especially for females here in Saudi Arabia. For women to go for shopping, they need to have a male companion to drive them in going to malls or stores for females are not allowed to drive. For female expats, they need to secure a shopping trip permit for them to buy the things they need and want if they are living far from the city. That is why online shopping has been a trend in the Middle East and I, too, planned to bring this idea when I get back home.

Now, I’m just staying at home, waiting for my items to be delivered right at my doorstep. Happy shoppin’ everyone.

Update: Here are the items I got from MarkaVIP. Thanks MarkaVIP.SAM_1744 SAM_1745 SAM_1746 SAM_1747 SAM_1748

P.S. I just bought a necklace for my mum worth US$1,440 and paid only US$210. What a discount! 😉

Diverted Frustrations

Before I left for the Middle East, I was planning to go somewhere up northeast in Asia. If you can still remember my bucket list, one of those is to visit a UNESCO world heritage site. I’ve been doing research and I found out there are a lot of those attractions somewhere in Northeastern Asia. Thus, I planned to visit South Korea and it’s ever famous palaces and temples. I’ve been reading reviews on hotels, hostels, inns and lodges. I’ve been checking on airline rates and quotes on different airline sites. I’ve been ‘googling’ on maps on what route to take going from here to there in SK. I even studied ‘hangeul’, their language and how to write it and also planned my trip in getting my tourist visa in Cebu. Then, one day it was a bit tiring due to traveling too early from my place to another province which lasted for 4 hours.

Upon arriving in the Consulate Office of South Korea which is located in UC Banilad Mezzanine, I directly went inside and greeted them in hangeul and to my surprise, there were all Filipinos, of course they should be Filipinos ;). I asked them and about to hand my visa application when my smile just disappeared upon hearing the words the front desk uttered. I can remember she said, ‘I am sorry but we don’t process visa application here in the Consular Office. You need to apply thru our embassy in Manila or seek aid with our accredited travel agencies.’  I just smirked at her and told her, ‘that is OK.’ I stepped out of the office and thought about the things I’ve been doing for this trip. All of those efforts had gone to waste and my frustrations grew bigger and bigger.

With my frustrations, I diverted it and continued watching Korean Drama series after that incident until I arrived here in the Middle East. I am still planning to visit South Korea one of these days but it will appear that I won’t be able to put a check mark on one of my things-to-do on my bucket list this year. That is sad.

Anyway, I just drowned myself with Korean TV series and I just finished and added three series on my watched list.

First. The romantic teen tandem of Park Shin-Hye and Jung Yong Hwa. It was televised last 2011 but my friends told me to try it, so, I watched it.Heartstrings_Promotional_Poster

It was good, talking about one-sided love but kinda too childish for  me. Maybe I’m too old for this 😉

Second. I’m addicted to Gugak series now due to two recent tv series being shown in Korea recently. I’ve watched Jang Ok Jung: Live for Love.Jang_Ok-jung,_Live_for_Love-poster

It was heartbreaking and definitely one of the best Korean drama series for this year. Two thumbs up for coming up with a great performance and everything that comes along with.

Lastly. The second Gugak series is Gu Family Book starred by Lee Seung-Gi and Suzy. It is a historical action packed fantasy series.Gu_Family_Book-poster

It was better but not to an extent of getting glued to it.

So, those were the series I’ve been watching to divert my frustrations of not getting the plan done. I just keep my fingers crossed so that next time I will be able to keep my planned  trip, bucket list come to reality.

It’s Getting Into My Nerves

I needed a month of R&R (rest and relaxation) but in the end, I’ve got a message that tells me that my certification is up for renewal. For the renewal, I need to submit updated validation and verification from different organizations and offices. I also need to sit on an examination. So, basically it turned my one month needed vacation into a spree of running errands, getting those updated forms, a week of self-review for my test.

I’ve been working for almost straight 2 years and I’ve got no other choice but to finish these tasks. With this kind of weather in the Philippines, I would have gone to the beach, basking on the sun, getting tan, drinking booze, meeting other people, dining out, but what I am doing right now is sickening me and it is getting into my nerves. I am just staying at home, writing this post as my frustrations grow bigger and bigger. Currently, I am listening to audios (conversations of native English speakers), reading passages, trying to interpret a graph, and of course, I’ve been doing monologues. I’ve been talking to myself in preparation for my examination. Now, you got a hint what kind of test I’ll be going to take. Yes, it is. It is indeed, the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Exam.

It has been a long time that I didn’t get myself assessed with any examinations for the last 2 years since I’ve been busy taking care of other thing else. Even though, I love to write but I still find it the hardest thing to do. Conversing in a second language which is English is still uncomfortable for me. This is the reason that I can’t just disregard this examination, I need to make preparation since I am not a native English speaker and my English communication skills is not polished enough.

In addition to that, taking the IELTS exam costs PhP8,986 wherein you can’t close your eyes after shelling out that amount of money. And wait there is more since the location for the said exam will be in Cebu City, so, I still need to find a place to stay which I will need another bucks to handle that matter.SAM_0002

——2 weeks after——

I already took the IELTS examination on the second week of May which was held in SME Training Centre in Cebu. For the location, you can visit this site. With a place to crash, I made a reservation in Cebu Parklane International Hotel since they were offering a Summer Blast promo for PhP2,800 for a night. If you want to try their Summery Splurge Splendid Promotional Offer, you can visit their site, here. The entire IELTS test experience was nerve-wracking but I got to enjoy it since I can unwind and de-stress with the hotel facilities that I stayed in.SAM_0025Two-bedroom with one extra bedSAM_0026Study Table, television, lamp, and the windowSAM_0031Cebu City view outside my hotel room windowSAM_0033the toiletSAM_0035the bathtub

As a conclusion, all I can say is Whooahh. It surely made my vacation penniless. Now, I’m broke, free and just waiting for the result that will be released within 13 days from the written test date. With the result, you can access it online as well as apply for the exam by clicking here, just make sure to choose the right country that you will take the test.

The Addiction Continues

As what I have posted on one of my entries weeks ago that I started getting hooked with Korean TV series when I got sick, it never happen that I stop from viewing it. I felt like I was under drugs that I need to get a daily dose of it every day or I will have symptoms of withdrawal if I stop. It appeared I was addicted to Korean television series and ended up wanting to speak their language, Hangeul. I even post messages in romanized hangeul in my facebook account without knowing it. It is really true that once you started viewing Korean drama series, it’ll become a habit and is harder for a person to stop. Korean drama series has indeed have an amazing and interesting plots, the sudden twist that viewers can’t expect what will happen that’ll make you wanting more. After I got better from my cough and colds, I finished Sungkyunkwan Scandal.Sungkyunkwan14

The story of Sungkyunkwan Scandal was kinda intriguing, talking about treason and corruption within the government. It is not uncommon that all people appointed to govern the country will do all good. I like the lines delivered, the meaning behind those and learnings. I like also the soundtrack, song by JYJ’s Found You.

Then after that, I immediately started another romantic comedy series entitled, Protect the Boss.post_9344_user_9714_1314815539Protect_The_Boss_OST_Part_7

This series was one of the many best comedy stories I have seen. It can happen in real life and it doesn’t show any violence made out of love. If you have noticed other movies or dramas, the arch-enemy always looks for ways to get rid of the main act for the sake of love which is giving the viewers a bad connotation of the word/ feeling, LOVE. It also implies in this series that love doesn’t know or set boundaries with regard to social/ financial stature in life. It was also funny and I got to laugh most of the time when I was watching this. I also like the soundtrack, songs like I’ll Protect You by Kim Jaejoong and Let Us Just Love by A Pink.

Next to that was Cheongdam Dong Alice.45535-baek-ah-yeon-cheongdam-dong-alice-ost-ranks-number-1-on-music-charts

With Cheongdamdong Alice, it taught me the value of money and love. People will say that money makes the world go round, and others would say love is the center of every person’s life. It was nice and kinda new approach of a Cinderella mixed with Alice in Wonderland story but in a lot nicer and complicated way. The saying struck me most, “If a rich person loves a poor person, that is commendable. But if a poor person loves a rich one, they say that’s ridiculous.” It was an eye-opener. I also love the soundtrack, a song from Baek Ah Yeon’s Daddy Long Legs and K. Will’s Love Like This. I totally love it and right after I finished watching it,  I already miss the cast. This series just finished last week of last month. I gave it two big thumbs up!

Due to this, I have liked to stay at home and do nothing, just plainly staring at my laptop til it’s time to eat or sleep. My addiction continues and that makes me Homebound. But even though I stayed at home, I still got time to write and post entries regarding my travels. Well, actually there are not travels, I only feature what is in my neighborhood at the time when I was still there. The memories I have and everything along with it. Probably, I’ll be changing my blog’s name to Korean drama addicts and no longer be a traveler =). Yet still I consider this kind of activity as part of my travel or journey called LIFE.

What Am I Gonna Do At Home

With this current weather condition and the middle of winter season, it is not unusual to have common colds, fever, cough, sore throat and flu. I also got these due to cold weather. Nowadays, viruses spread easily and are more potent than before. As my upper respiratory tract infection progresses, I tend to rest more at home with nothing to do. Then,  I just started thinking what am I gonna do at home since I cannot travel with this type of condition I have. I am weak, feverish and my bloody runny nose makes me more uncomfortable. So, I ended up lockdown at home til I’m good to go. With this week confinement, I haven’t done anything productive. I finished writing this post and most of the days of my week, watched a lot of television series. My eyes are glued with Korean TV series now, with just 5 days I was able to watch 4 TV series and those were:rooftop-prince-17-bolum-izle

Rooftop Prince

My first Korean TV series and I ended up with sleepless nights. The story was great, the plot, the scene, it was definitely addictive. I think I have watched this within 2 days only, my eyes were literally on the screen without a blink watching this. There were no dull moments and as the story goes, it became more interesting that the viewers will look forward on what’s going to happen next, out of curiosity. It was indeed one of the best Korean series I’ve seen so far. Not to mention the soundtrack, songs were topnotch. I placed those songs on my iPod and played it like countless times in a day. Songs were performed by Baek Ji Young titled After a Long Time, Happy Ending by Jay Park and Ali’s Hurt.

Next was, 194838_156816874454612_199687395_oThe Moon that Embraces the Sun

For me, it lacks impact to the viewers. Storyline was not that complicated. At first I have doubts of watching this series but due to high viewer rating when it was aired in South Korea so, I watched this out of curiosity as well. The first half or first 10 episodes were great with humour, and the chemistry between two main child characters was amazing. Yet as the story goes deeper, it lacked spice and became bland in my opinion but still gave it one thumb up for everything.

Considering that I love Fantasy-Period-Romantic genre, third on my list was,315447_127945744015375_849513714_nArang and the Magistrate

It was an action packed, one of the best TV shows I’ve seen also. Everything was perfect, first 5 episodes might be tiresome but it has a purpose since they were building up the plot as it goes to the next episodes. It was brilliant  with minor glitch at the end since the ending was too unexpected. I may think they did a hasty pack up for this TV show with that kind of ending, kinda disappointed though. But still I gave it two thumbs up as an overall experience watching this series. I also like the soundtrack with Baek Ji Young’s Love and Love and K Will’s You are Love.

After my Joseun Era TV shows, I shifted back to current time and viewed,536704_449728668377547_1828288828_nI Do, I Do

It depicts love between career and motherhood. Romantic comedy it is. It was nice. All 16 episodes were amazing and I can’t stop watching them. I have no negative feedback to say about this TV show cause it was flawless. The story was good not so provocative and I just finished watching this not a long time ago.

Now, I’m currently watching Sungkyunkwan Scandal.36300_240597862735069_1129477621_nLet me see what this show has to offer for a sick viewer like me.

Enjoy your day, guys. Make sure to take care of your health and always be fit, take vitamins, fruits, vegetables and drink a lot of water <a simple reminder from a sick *sniff sniff* homebound blogger>. =)