Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Edsamail Eulogy

Long weekend. A rainy night. The "5-day-long-weekend" ends tomorrow. The sun has been hiding; I've accumulated enough bedweather for a whole month. Had covert this stored up potential energy something productive. I caught up with some BIG TIME BACKLOG entries on blogging. 

However, the internet has been irritatingly wonky during this 5-day workbreak. I can't even work from home decently because of the slow connection. I saw this revised Maslow's hierarchy of needs posted in Facebook:

Too bad Maslow didn't see this

Facebook, Twitter and Gmail have been loading unusually slow from time to time. It made me think about my other non-Gmail email addys.I remebered: Edsamail!
Edsamail CD anyone?
 
Remember those 56 kbps dial-up days? When the cheapest internet card was Rebel? It was Php 100 for 4 hours, and you can get a free email add with Rebel. Then Pacific offered Php 100 for 10 hours. Then came ISP Bonanza with Php 100 for 20 hours. I remember patting and talking to our dial-up modem to please please please connect to the internet during these days. (If you don't remember, then I guess you are you are younger than me =P)

Enter DSL age. We got Bayantel's DSL package (same provider until now) and kissed the 40-minute-per-mp3-download world goodbye. Hello YouTube!

During those dial up days, Edsamail was the savior of the students who wants to check their email for free. The edsamail CD installers were passed around class. There are these special email addys:
___@mariaclara.ph, ___@climbers.ph, etc. Lotsa jokes and videos were forwarded. I joined a lot of yahoogroups back then. However, there was just a 1MB limit on the size of the email attachments hence you could not forward an mp3. Everyone who had a computer and a dial-up modem had a free access to the email world.

Come my freshie days in 2001, Edsamail announced that their service was not for free anymore. One would have to pay Php 365 a year if you'll continue using their service (Add Php 100 to maintain your special email add). They marketed it in a way that the rate is still cheaper than a cellphone load. I fell for it. So I paid that Php 365. Then next year, they raised their fees to Php 500. I still paid that. And
paid another Php 500 the next year. I maintained my Edsamail email till around my OJT days. Then I got fed up and finally made the switch to Gmail with its Gigabyte capacity. Why was I so stubborn to change for so long? Gaaaah. I bid farewell to lorainefg@edsamail.com.ph. Consumed by my Edsamail memories, I unearthed the free CD they gave out in malls back then.
Free Edsamail CD
I googled up on Edsamail, this is what I found:
Edsamail 2013

That is the same URL of Edsamail during the days I accessed its web-based platform. I sent out my resumes using my Edsamail email address, despite everyone having a Yahoo and Gmail emails. Pinanindigan ko talaga!

Good thing we are now in the Broadband era. Dial-up era is a scary time to remember.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Flight Back to Manila: EU II Closing Thoughts


I cannot find the photos I took on my way to Lisbon airport and my whole flight back. Bummer. Probably, I mistakenly cleared the memory card thinking I saved the photos but I didn’t. Booooo.

 So here it goes with less photos. 

I bought two souvenir shirts from the shop below Good Morning Hostel Lisbon. The guy here calls me out whenever I leave or arrive: “Hey there Philippines!”. I bought two shirts from him for €19 for my parents. 



I had a bunch of euro coins left so I splurged €6,90 in Haagen Dazs for an apple pie ice cream before heading to the airport. 

The bus going to the airport costs €3,50, the stop is right in front of my hostel, so it was very convenient.

I wasted more euros for pasalubong at the airport. I was closely monitoring my spending throughout the trip and I was still way below my planned budget. I never fully utilized the food allowance.

I am blogging almost two years after the trip itself. I already forgot some of the details, I had to Google them in order to tell my adventure. Details are awesome, but you won’t really remember the kings, the wars and all of those stories. But I still remember how I felt in particular events during the trip.

I felt that the living in the city of Prague is like living in the city of Sleeping Beauty. It was a classically beautiful and picturesque city that you can spend hours in thinning the soles of your shoes.

Walking in the streets of Athens felt like walking in Cubao, with ruins all over the place. Athens didn’t give a wow factor at first, but I learned how to like it.




Feta cheese in salads means a block of feta cheese on top of your greens. They don’t scrimp.







We did not have a lot of time in Barcelona. I vow to go back when Sagrada Familia is finished. (They keep adjusting the date though).


And there's a lot more to explore in the Andalucian region.

I am extremely happy and thankful that I was able to go to Europe again. When I did EU I, I thought that would be that. I didn’t think I’d be able to come back soon, even if I wanted to. Cheers to a lower Euro rate. 


Sunday, August 4, 2013

Hostel Review: Good Morning Hostel Lisbon



This hostel shows what customer service is all about! First of all, they treat you as a buddy-friend, and they are willing to answer all your questions. They answered my questions thoroughly and gave me plenty of suggestions.
 


I stayed in a 6-bed female dorm for two nights and a double room for my last night. The 6-bed dorm was spacious. Each bed had its own lamp, socket and a place to put random stuff on. The beds are really sturdy too! It does not creak and squeak as much. A super plus especially because I was assigned at the top bunk. The lockers are huge (bring your own lock) and the room has enough space to accommodate the luggage even if we are all in the room.

The room looks really spartan but the bunks are very sturdy, and they are kept clean!
The common bathrooms were well-maintained, spotless and never runs out of tissue paper. The bathroom had a hook where you can hang your things, although in my opinion, a couple of more hooks/hangers in the shower stall can help. There are 3 shower stalls, 5 toilets and 6 sinks. I never saw the bathroom full.

Food in Lisbon: The Appetizers Ain't Free



Lisbon is famous for its amazing seafood dishes. I met two travelers who said they’ve tasted the best seafood in their life in Lisbon! I raised an eyebrow at that. I would still argue that the best seafood can be found in the shores of Palawan, Surigao and Davao.

Codfish is the specialty of Lisbon. I’m not sure if the codfish is special because it is somewhat unique in Lisbon. It does not have a “Lisbon Codfish Special” recipe. Restaurant menus offer baked codfish, fried codfish, boiled in a sauce and grilled.

I had lunch after my two-hour tour around Lisbonupon my arrival. A very late lunch in restaurant near the hostel, as they recommended. 

The restaurant flaunted this aquarium with sea creatures.

The waiter brought me a basket of (cold) bread, two pieces of croquettes, butter, oil and olives as appetizers.

Swanky set.

The codfish was perfectly baked but the seasoning was too salty. Too much butter and flavor that was too strong to the delicate codfish. The potatoes were also salty and did not offer “break” to cleanse my palette.



Total bill: €23,80. I was surprised at the bill. This is a pricey meal for one. Apparently, the appetizers are not free – my bill lists €5,00 as the cost of the appetizer. Had I known that, I would’ve ditched them entirely. Or maybe not, because I was too hungry at that point.
 
I settled the bill and the waiter came back with my change and a note scribbled in my receipt. This note made me forgive that price. I smiled at the waiter after reading his note. *haba lang ng hair*
The sentence syntax could use some tweaking, but hey...:)
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