Love, Relationship

That Thing called LDR…

“LDR? Shocks! This will not work for me.”

“WTF, I am going to be crazy because of our distance.”

“Waaah, I hate our time difference.”

“Why can’t I hug and kiss you?”

“When will I see you again?”

“Our distance kills me.”

“Why can’t we be near to each other?”

“Will I stay in love despite the distance?”

These are just a few statements that you utter once you are having or nearly having a long distance relationship or LDR. The thoughts really suck, right? I know that most of the people around the world are trying to avoid this kind of relationship. In fact, millions of couples on Earth are really near to one another, staying by each other’s side whatever circumstances they are in. But, there are also those couples who are so brave to let themselves be in love despite the distance, time zone, culture, age, language and other differences.

LDR is really hard. Who say that it isn’t? Every person who is having this kind of relationship finds it difficult to sustain the communication, to express the love and care for his or her partner, to be more patient and understanding, to be loyal, and to just stay in love.

There are different circumstances behind this LDR thing. First, your significant other is working abroad. Second, you and your family need to migrate and your partner cannot join you there. Third, you need to stay in your country because of visa problem, while your husband or wife is working abroad. Fourth, you have to travel a lot due to your job needs. Fifth, you cannot say no to a great job offer overseas.  Sixth, you’re having a relationship with someone you have met online. Seventh, you just live in two different countries or continents.

Many ask themselves, “Can I really do it?” “Can I really fall for someone who is so far from me?” “Will I survive this LDR?” “Will it not make me crazy and sad?” “Is my partner really loyal and honest to me?” “Are we still in love with each other despite the distance?” Just the thought of these questions make you already sick, right? The thought of not seeing your significant other every day makes you worried or worse, doubtful. Really, this long distance relationship dilemma is always there, always haunting you. Why? Heck, because you and your loved one are not together! Sad thoughts, many doubts, few misunderstanding or should I say plenty of misunderstanding join you as you and your loved one stay in a long distance love affair.

Plenty of people are having LDR, but sad to say, most of them easily give up, or just fall out of love eventually. So, the lovebirds who choose to stay in love despite the distance are really brave and strong. Like what others usually say, long distance relationship is only for brave, strong and patient people. If you cannot wait for a little while, if you cannot trust more and be totally honest to your partner, if you cannot be courageous enough to defy the challenges along the way, then, LDR is not really for you.

Cheers to those couples who truly believe in the beauty of long distance relationship! I admire you for the courage, patience, understanding, devotion, sacrifice, honesty, loyalty, and love you have for each other.

To you, lovebirds, who have doubts if you can really survive this thing called Long Distance Relationship, doubt no more. Just go on and enjoy the great feeling of being in love. Stick to each other despite the distance, time difference, language barrier, and other reasons. Moreover, believe that both of you will also have the great time of your lives soon, that you will also be together eventually. Start hoping that the distance between the two of you will be no longer there, and make it happen soon. Above all, hold on to each other’s love and pray that you will also end up together. Who knows, your love story might also be ‘a Happy ever after’.

So, again, to you my fellow bloggers who still have doubts or hesitations regarding LDR, remember these little thoughts of mine:

LDR will also work for you if only you have the faith.

Being ‘crazy’ sometimes makes you human.

Don’t hate. Just love.

You can hug and kiss his photos instead. Later on, you can do it for real.

Seeing each other again depends on the budget, time and other circumstances. Be patient and it will happen again.

If distance kills you, then why are you still alive and reading this LDR article? Haha.

Patience. Patience. Patience. plus Plenty of Understanding. This answers your question.

Staying in love and being in a relationship are definitely your choice. Period.

 

Life, Love

When You Love Someone…

  1. You are proud of him.
  2. You have time for him.
  3. You are aware of his emotions.
  4. You have a lot of patience for him.
  5. You understand him.
  6. You appreciate his efforts and skills.
  7. You respect his perspectives in life.
  8. You accept what or who he is.
  9. You are loyal and honest to him.
  10. You trust him.
  11. You give him space.
  12. You allow him to grow as an individual.
  13. You are happy for his achievements.
  14. You support him.
  15. You share with him your dreams, goals and secrets.
  16. You stand by his side his during ups and downs.
  17. You also make him your priority.
  18. You care for him.
  19. You think of him most of the time.
  20. You pray for him.
  21. You forgive him.

These are the 21 things you do or you feel when you love someone. I hope that you also share the same thoughts with me, fellow bloggers. If you have other thoughts regarding this post, please let me know so we can also interact. 

Stay happy and in love. 🙂

-J.L. ❤

Life, Travel

Schengen Visa Granted!

European tour? Wow! I could not believe it at first when my beau told me he wanted to invite me in his place. Just wow! Imagine, I would see the land, aside from North America, that lure various OFWs away from home, and captivate the hearts of many travelers from different parts of the world. Yes, I started to imagine vivid pictures of my upcoming Europe tour. I could not wait to see the great Alps, to taste European cuisines, to marvel at lovely and historical spots in every country that I would visit, and to experience the Western culture that’s really different from mine. Plenty of good things about Europe, especially Austria, popped into my mind.

So, back to the invitation of my then-boyfriend, we started preparing things so I would be able to go to Europe in June. I knew it! Reaching the West was really difficult, that I had to endure challenges along the way. When M told me he wanted me to be by his side in June, I had too much excitement and at the same time, worry. Why excitement? Because we would be together again. Why worry? Because I had heard that it’s hard for a Filipino like me to obtain a Schengen Visa, either Tourist Visa or Family Visa.

Anyway, despite the worry, our plan was pushed through. So, I started searching for information on how to apply for a Schengen Visa, specifically Family/Friend Visit. I checked different websites to gather information and I read forums about it as well. In other words, I equipped myself with lots of information and prepared everything before lodging my dream visa.

Austrian Embassy website, VFS Global Philippines site, and TouringBuddy.com helped me a lot during my preparation. You can check out their sites:

https://www.bmeia.gv.at/en/embassy/manila.html

http://www.vfsglobal.com/austria/philippines/Visiting_Family_Friends.html

http://touringbuddy.com/visa-requirements-philippine-passport-holders-–-austria-republic-austria/

All the valuable information I got from these sites became my pass to getting my Austrian visa. My boyfriend and I helped each other in order for me to lodge the Schengen visa successfully, and of course, to obtain that visa. By the way, I could proudly say that I did not resort to any agency for my visa. It was all my effort and my boyfriend’s to research and comply with all the requirements. The good thing here was the list of pertinent documents to be submitted was actually shown on the abovementioned sites. The best thing you could do was just to follow the steps and submit the necessary papers.

Anyway, I signed up with VFS Global Manila for my visa appointment. I provided my passport number, its year of expiry and my birth date. Along with this, I also chose the day and time I would go to the center for the interview.

May 11, 2016 was the day I lodged my Schengen Visa – Family Visit at Austria Visa Application Center, Ground Floor, Ecoplaza Bldg.,  Don Chino Roces Ave., Makati City. I was accompanied by my parents and two friends. But of course, I was just alone when I was interviewed. There were not a lot of people in our area. I was the third one that was called by the personnel. She asked me to submit the copy of the following requirements stipulated in the PDF attachment the Centre provided. I submitted all the required documents, and I also gave my best to answer the questions of the interviewer. Mind you, the questions were really unexpected, but good thing, I already anticipated them. I was able to satisfy the interviewer with all the answers I gave her. Aside from interview, the woman also got my fingerprints (or biometrics) for the visa. In the end, I had to pay 60 euros or 3,504.00 pesos as of this writing for the Visa fee, and I also paid additional 1,752.00 pesos for the VFS logistics fee. Aside from the aforementioned fees, I even availed the SMS Solution which cost me 120.00 pesos and Courier for 370.00 pesos. These were the fees I paid during the whole duration of my appointment day at VFS Global Centre.

My appointment was done. All I needed was to wait.. and wait… After 10 days, my passport with my GRANTED VISUM/VISA attached to it was brought back to me. I definitely cried when I saw that piece of paper on my Philippine passport. At last, it’s already confirmed. I would see my beloved once again, meet his family, and experience the European life even for a short time. Never have I imagined this, but it would happen soon. Hello Europe!

P.S. If you want to know more about the details of Schengen Visa and other visas, contact numbers of the embassy or centre, please refer to the links I have provided above. Also, with regards to the forms or PDFs, kindly see the sites and download the attachments for your own reference. Thank you and good luck!

-J.L. ❤

Travel

Hong Kong: My First Travel Abroad

I did not expect that my Mahal would take me to Hong Kong for a very short vacation. His one-week holiday was just supposedly spent in the Philippines, but it turned out that he had another plan, and that was to spend with me the remaining days of his one week-holiday in Hong Kong. What a real surprise!

So, I packed some OOTDs, make-up kit, toiletries, and other important things inside my then-newly-bought-luggage (courtesy of my then-boyfriend-now-husband). I was kinda anxious, because it had been four years since my last plane ride. To be honest, I had fear of height before (but now gone, thanks again to my husband because we travel a lot hehe).

So, luggages were ready, and so were we. My parents and sister accompanied us to Manila Int’l Airport before heading to HK. We said goodbyes to them and we boarded Cathay Pacific plane around 18:30 for our 19:00 flight. It was actually one hour earlier than our original  flight schedule. Two hours was the duration of the flight, and it was nice, maybe because I was with my forever travel buddy haha.

We arrived safely at Hong Kong International Airport, and I was really in awe when I saw the airport. It was definitely better than what we had at home. (Ooops, sorry, I was just stating a fact ha!) We passed through the immigration, and everything went so smooth. My boyfriend and I took the Airport Express ride toward Kowloon Station, and then rode a taxi to reach the Royal Garden Hotel, our luxury hotel for three days (Actually 2 1/2 days because it was really late when we had our check-in there.)

Our suite was simple yet elegant. We just put our things in the room, and went out to have dinner. It was cold back then, yet I was wearing short jumper and printed black shirt (How stupid of me! I did not check the temperature of HK during this time. Haha). Anyway, so we went out and walked along Mody Road. We were searching for a nice restaurant. By the way, it was already past 23:00 then, so we were really hungry and tired. We eventually found a small Chinese restaurant where my Mahal and I ate Chinese noodles. It was a good meal to make us both warm, because the temperature outside was low, around 14 degrees.

After an hour, we went back to our hotel and slept immediately because we were so tired. In the morning, M ordered a huge Western breakfast. Moldu! It was good for three-four persons, yet we were just two inside the room. I did not eat everything on my plate, but he did. 😁 After eating, we prepared to attend the Easter Sunday Mass. YES! It’s Easter then, that’s why our HK trip was very memorable to me.

We were able to attend the mass, but unfortunately we were at the back of the church. I was almost standing by the door, because of the big crowd inside. What would I expect? Hello, it’s Easter! We were not the only persons who would like to celebrate the Easter Sunday Mass. By the way, the language during the mass was Cantonese (the official language of Hong Kong), but I did not care. So long as I knew the order of the mass, and I went there for Christ, everything for me was totally fine. Mass ended, and my beau and I went to Victoria Harbor, Hong Kong Cultural Center, and Clock Tower to have souvenir photos. These were really memorable to me. Imagine, I was having a vacation abroad, however short it was, with my beloved M! I could not ask for more during this time.

After hours of strolling around Tsim Sha Tsui, we went back to our hotel to take a nap, then we prepared for our dinner with my beau’s friends in HK. I met for the first time his friends working in HK. Actually, we were three couples then, because his friends brought their girlfriends. It was an amazing night with them. We had a BBQ Party in a Chinese restaurant in TST. We also had videoke and game sessions. My boyfriend drank beer with his colleagues, while I was talking to their girlfriends. As much as we wanted to stay longer, but we could not because we still needed to get up early for another day of strolling and buying souvenirs.

Our last day of our stay in Hong Kong was kinda sad. It was also the day we were about to be apart again. We just went to some souvenir stores on Nathan Road, and ate pizza at Brotzeit German Bier Bar and Restaurant. After this, we went back to our hotel to check-out.

After checking out, we left our luggages in the lobby, and went to find more souvenirs. We stopped at K11 Mall, and bought there my pink Columbia rubber shoes, pink waterproof Columbia jacket, gray North Face jacket and additional souvenirs. Then, we went back to the hotel to get our luggages.

Around 5 pm, we were already at the HK Int’l Airport. My beau and I decided to drink and eat something at Le Grand Pokka Cafe, a Japanese restaurant offering various coffee flavors, and sumptuous Japanese and Western cuisines. I ordered American blend and fries, whereas he ordered Blue Mountain No.1 for his coffee. We stayed there for two hours, and then he accompanied me to my boarding gate. We chatted there for a while, took some photos, and hugged and kissed each other. Yes, we were kinda cheesy yet sad at that time, because we would not be seeing each other for 2 1/2 months. Time passed so fast, and we needed to be apart again. It was ironic, for we started our vacation with too much happiness in our heart, but we ended it with sadness. It was one of our most dramatic scenes ever. I hugged him tightly and said my goodbyes to him. I boarded the Cathay Pacific plane to Manila with tears falling down on my cheeks. What a short but meaningful vacation huh!

Back to Philippines again, and he in Europe! Waaah, we wanted to pull the time, so we could see each other again. Another long distance relationship (LDR) time again…….

See you, Europe, after two and half months! ❤ (Another blog post is coming)

P.S. I want to THANK my SCHATZ because our trip was really a dream-come-true for me, to travel internationally, and to go to Hong Kong with him. He is indeed my travel buddy! (By the way, WATCH OUT FOR OUR OTHER TRAVEL GETAWAYS soon! Vielen Dank!)

-Jini